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Old 09-19-2018, 01:18 PM   #1
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Question 1985 GMC 6000 5-speed gas

Hello all,

My wife and I are looking at purchasing a 1985 GMC 6000 gas engine 72 passenger bus with 171,000 km on it. This bus is already converted into a skoolie and has been used locally (only moved once a month to keep things from seizing up).
Our plan is to drive from Ontario to the west coast with it & we're wondering the reliability of this type of engine & what kind of gas mileage this may get (especially in mountain terrain).

Any info/tips/suggestions on this engine would be greatly appreciated!

With gratitude,

Simon
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Old 09-19-2018, 01:51 PM   #2
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Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
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Welcome Simon,

There is a strong preference for diesel rigs here due to fuel economy and longevity.

I would expect the bus you mentioned to get 5-7mpg. By comparison, my 8.3 Cummins gets 9-11mpg.

Regarding the mileage, a 32 year old bus with only 171,000km showing is suspect. It can happen but rarely in school bus service. It is fairly common to see instrument clusters replaced leaving you a little in the dark as to actual miles. Newer electronic engines also store the actual mileage on the computer giving you something to compare to.

My recommendation for a cross country bus would be one with a larger diesel.

I may be a little biased.... I love my 8.3...
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Old 09-19-2018, 01:55 PM   #3
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what you are lookin at

Well tis 35 years old. But that kind truck is still haulin, dirt, construction debris, farm products etc even today.

Its not fast, dont even think you are going to be in the fast lane. The fuel mileage might shock you. It will do the job. This bus was at the advent of diesel school bus era.

reliability should be good. Find an expert in carburetors or learn to be very good with them yourself. Learn how the choke works, even if you pay some one else to keep it in tune. I don't know what the fuel mileage will be but 6 to 8 mpg would not surprise me. If you keep this in very good tune, the timing chain, and distributor is in very good condition, you may be able to tune for better mileage but it is work.

Most here wont do an manual transmission. Later, if you desired you could swap for an automatic, The 643 four speed auto would do okay, but you put more power to ground with the manual transmission- in most cases.

william
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Old 09-19-2018, 02:57 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW_Steve View Post
Welcome Simon,

There is a strong preference for diesel rigs here due to fuel economy and longevity.

I would expect the bus you mentioned to get 5-7mpg. By comparison, my 8.3 Cummins gets 9-11mpg.

Regarding the mileage, a 32 year old bus with only 171,000km showing is suspect. It can happen but rarely in school bus service. It is fairly common to see instrument clusters replaced leaving you a little in the dark as to actual miles. Newer electronic engines also store the actual mileage on the computer giving you something to compare to.

My recommendation for a cross country bus would be one with a larger diesel.

I may be a little biased.... I love my 8.3...
My old Ford gasser got like 4mpg.
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Old 09-19-2018, 03:15 PM   #5
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Join Date: May 2016
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
My old Ford gasser got like 4mpg.
Ethanol improves fuel mileage.

I knew a gent with a 366(?) equipped bus that managed around 6 mpg.

Give him a couple of Scotch's and it went up to 8mpg.......
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:37 PM   #6
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Ethanol reduces mileage, has less energy content per gallon, 60% the energy of gas, only advantage to ethanol is that it's octane rating is close to 120, so you can have really high compression and make ridiculous power
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Old 09-19-2018, 10:03 PM   #7
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What Kuba said. Ethanol will also eat rubber gas line over time. Most stations will tell you that regular gas contains 10% ethanol.
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Old 09-20-2018, 10:35 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Kubla View Post
Ethanol reduces mileage, has less energy content per gallon, 60% the energy of gas, only advantage to ethanol is that it's octane rating is close to 120, so you can have really high compression and make ridiculous power
Kublai,

We didn't put the Scotch in the fuel tank, we fed it to the driver as we sat around the campfire talking about buses, trips and comparing fuel economy. The more Scotch he drank, the higher his mileage claimed climbed.
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Old 09-20-2018, 05:32 PM   #9
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my 1978 Loadstar with a 392 Gasser running really lean gets 6-8 MPG at 55 MPH... (2500 RPM).. the bus is an 11 window conventional..if I richen it up to where its happiest then it gets 5-6 on average

-Christopher
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Old 04-15-2019, 01:18 PM   #10
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I have the same bus and we run it every weekend. You can expect about 33L/100 km or about 7 MPG.
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