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Old 05-27-2015, 12:27 PM   #1
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Too Much Info. Can't Parse

All of these threads are way over my head when it comes to my search for the appropriate bus.

Dumb it down for me please

I want to be able to pull a trailer with an old VW Bug, and I want to go down the highway at a reasonable speed while doing it.
What should I be asking about when I go shopping for my bus/home?

I already know that most buses are built to start and stop frequently, and probably only go about 45 MPH.

What do I need to ask about in order to get a bus that will do what I need? Doesn't matter if it's currently in running condition to me. I can get it fixed.
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Old 05-27-2015, 01:50 PM   #2
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Most full size school buses (25-40' in length usually) can do 55mph and if you want to tow a VW bug, any full-size school bus would be up to the task and you probably wouldnt even notice it. Make sure you have a correctly sized tow hitch and that it is installed properly. I wouldn't recommend a gas bus. Diesel is better.

Try and learn as much as you can, even if it's over your head. Find someone to have a conversation with either over the phone or in person who can explain your options in a way you will understand.

Be aware that buying a broken bus is almost never going to be a good idea unless you are a skilled mechanic with a lot of time on your hands. It is WAAAAY better to spend a couple extra thousand on a bus with no rust and no issues in good shape than to try and spend all the time and money polishing a rust turd bucket. Unless you have a lot of disposable income. In which case, talk to me and you can hire me to build you one ;)

Best of luck out there, I hope this helps. The waters warm but really deep out here!
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Old 05-27-2015, 01:51 PM   #3
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I know what ya mean... I've been here a few weeks and I haven't scratched the surface. Everyone's got their opinions of which powertrain configuration is best or worse.
I'm just going to have to find a bus and let it sell itself.
That's what I do with personal vehicles... by doing that I've found older vehicles that were treated better than newer vehicles.

Another thing I'm noticing... Son is in search of a 2005 - 2009 Dodge Charger.
Seems like everything's starting out at 165,000 miles and up!
Dealer friend tells me that he's seeing a lot more like that too.
People are hanging into their stuff.
I derailed from the thread, sorry

Just saying, there's a lot of good info here!

edit:
And I've never even owned a diesel engine, so I'm having to learn about them also
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Old 05-27-2015, 02:05 PM   #4
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If you're planning on visiting a lot of campgrounds, flat-nose transit style passes better as an "RV" than a long nose. Cummins and Navistar power plants are more wallet friendly than CAT engines.
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Old 05-28-2015, 08:59 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by charles_m View Post
Most full size school buses (25-40' in length usually) can do 55mph and if you want to tow a VW bug, any full-size school bus would be up to the task and you probably wouldnt even notice it. Make sure you have a correctly sized tow hitch and that it is installed properly. I wouldn't recommend a gas bus. Diesel is better.

Try and learn as much as you can, even if it's over your head. Find someone to have a conversation with either over the phone or in person who can explain your options in a way you will understand.

Be aware that buying a broken bus is almost never going to be a good idea unless you are a skilled mechanic with a lot of time on your hands. It is WAAAAY better to spend a couple extra thousand on a bus with no rust and no issues in good shape than to try and spend all the time and money polishing a rust turd bucket. Unless you have a lot of disposable income. In which case, talk to me and you can hire me to build you one ;)

Best of luck out there, I hope this helps. The waters warm but really deep out here!
Thanks for the reply!

I was leaning towards a short bus, but I guess I should be looking at something bigger now.

I already know I want a diesel, but I've read that there's a 6 liter pusher out there that's terrible. I can't find where I read about it any more, so I'm trying to figure all of that out.

I won't be polishing a rusty turd (LOL)! I'll be sure to thoroughly inspect everything.

I don't have a lot of disposable income, but I do have a step-father with about 50 years of diesel mechanic experience. He's retiring this Friday, but I didn't want to start flooding him with questions until I'm ready to go buy something. He's never worked on a school bus either, so he may not even have any answers for me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by milkmania View Post
I know what ya mean... I've been here a few weeks and I haven't scratched the surface. Everyone's got their opinions of which powertrain configuration is best or worse.
I'm just going to have to find a bus and let it sell itself.
That's what I do with personal vehicles... by doing that I've found older vehicles that were treated better than newer vehicles.

Another thing I'm noticing... Son is in search of a 2005 - 2009 Dodge Charger.
Seems like everything's starting out at 165,000 miles and up!
Dealer friend tells me that he's seeing a lot more like that too.
People are hanging into their stuff.
I derailed from the thread, sorry

Just saying, there's a lot of good info here!

edit:
And I've never even owned a diesel engine, so I'm having to learn about them also
One thing I know about a good diesel engine, is that it can go forever. 165,00 miles is just a warm up lap for them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Scooternj View Post
If you're planning on visiting a lot of campgrounds, flat-nose transit style passes better as an "RV" than a long nose. Cummins and Navistar power plants are more wallet friendly than CAT engines.
I'm not planning to travel much at all. I do know that I like the dog noses better, but mostly because there's only the wheel wells in the back to deal with and steal space.

Thanks for letting me know about the Cummins and Navistar power plants. I'll be researching those for a few days (or more)
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