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Old 05-11-2015, 01:20 PM   #1
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advice for the Bus buying virgin

hi everyone,

well i am just about to buy my first short school bus, its a 1983 international model 1723, automatic, gas, 36 passenger in great condition. I would love as much advice as you all have for me on converting this to a RV. (Im very excited)

Also, I was told by the school mechanic that its top speed is 50 mile and it is not built for highway driving???? as high speed will cause the back end to lose control????? (not quiet sure what this means) so as i would like to take it on highways, can i upgrade this engine??? approx cost???

It also comes without any heating or aircon, so looking at getting that installed as well as part of the conversion.

would love to hear from you all with as much advice, plans, ideas and info as possible.

My little bus will be located in tampa at my home for renovations.

many thanks
Tanya
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Old 05-11-2015, 02:25 PM   #2
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Location: Eustis FLORIDA
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Year: 1992
Coachwork: Ward/AmTran
Chassis: International
Engine: dt466
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I'm about an hour and a half from you. Located in Apopka/Sorrento.
My first bus was a gasoline engine bus and they suck. They struggle to get 4-5 mpg and don't have nearly the grunt that a decent diesel does. For your purposes this bus would not be ideal, in my opinion.
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Old 05-11-2015, 04:33 PM   #3
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Location: Andrews,Indiana
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Year: 1991
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Chassis: AARE
Engine: 3116 Cat 250hp
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I agree

Quote:
as high speed will cause the back end to lose control?????
If that is true, there is something wrong with it.

Quote:
Also, I was told by the school mechanic that its top speed is 50 mile and it is not built for highway driving????
Many route buses have low rear end gear ratios, but that seems a bit low even for that.

I'd look for something else. The amount of money spent getting that one up to speed could be better spent getting a bus that can already go that fast.
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:06 PM   #4
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Location: West Ohio
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Year: 1984
Coachwork: Bluebird
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Engine: 6.9 International
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How much traveling do you plan on doing? That really dictates where you're priorities will lie when buying a bus.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:54 PM   #5
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well i have decided to take the plunge and buy and convert as i am sick of renting RV year after year. i plan on using it a few times a year for 2- 3 week vacations around america and canada... and weekend trips away every now and then... but i will be using the highways and open roads to get to most of the places. And i dont really want anything bigger than 21ft (i like that size to drive) So any advice on type of bus, model, engine, desiel/gas ect would be most helpful.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:58 PM   #6
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check out tygercubs build...it's a nice size...bigger than you want by a couple feet;
but it has big diesel engine,big tranny and big air brakes...win,win,win

and 10/12 mpg to boot
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by miss_rockford View Post
well i have decided to take the plunge and buy and convert as i am sick of renting RV year after year. i plan on using it a few times a year for 2- 3 week vacations around america and canada... and weekend trips away every now and then... but i will be using the highways and open roads to get to most of the places. And i dont really want anything bigger than 21ft (i like that size to drive) So any advice on type of bus, model, engine, desiel/gas ect would be most helpful.
Gas is going to cost you a fortune. Your trip to Canada is going to cost you so much in gas you'll be kicking yourself if you go with gasoline over diesel.
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Old 05-12-2015, 06:11 PM   #8
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Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
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I wrote a really profound post earlier and my internet connection crashed and I lost it all.

I have driven many a mile in a gas powered IHC chassis school bus. They were great driving buses. The S-Series was a great improvement in driveability compared to the Loadstar chassis buses.

The best fuel mileage we ever got in an S-Series with a gas engine was 4-5 MPG and that was with the MV404. The buses with the MV446 were lucky to get 4 MPG and it wasn't unusual to be under 3 MPG.

I have driven several buses with IHC chassis that the top speed was geared to 47 MPH and many more that were geared to a top speed of 57 MPH. Going faster didn't do anything to the rear end. Going faster could cause an engine to blow up.

If you want a smaller bus with a diesel we have several used ones in stock with prices under $5,000.00 with great rubber and in super condition. And best of all--these are western buses with no rust.

Good luck and happy trails.
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