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Old 02-24-2015, 10:32 AM   #31
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
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Year: 1978
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Engine: 406 Ford
Rated Cap: 25
Hi Misi-
I used to dwell in Lawrence, KS, and when there, they had a fairly nice bus dealer- Midwest Bus, if I remember correctly. They might still be around...
I ended up winning a bus off of EBAY, and picked it up in N. Dakota. It was sold to the person I bought it from by Harlow's Bus Sales- a wonderful operation, imo.
Anyhow, I thought I'd throw that out there.
Also, there are a few different packages offered in the bus world- climate being a big factor. One great thing I like about school buses from the cold Northern climes, is that they all have a Winter package- more insulation- in the walls & floors, block heaters, and sometimes even a cold start ether injection system (be careful with ether, though, you can really screw up your engine if you don't know what you're doing).
Best of luck to you in finding the right bus. The whole process is one great time, that I wish was shared by more!
Cheers!
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Old 02-24-2015, 08:13 PM   #32
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Posts: 1,328
Year: 2000
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That looks like a nice layout for full-time living. For your use, and especially considering the availability of front-engine buses, FE seems like a great choice!

Depending on how you feel about stairs eating up your interior space the entry through the rear wall might be a really nice design. You could build stairs that mount on the outside of the bus and remove, flip up, etc for travel. I think rear entry sounds like a great idea, especially if you want to have some "living room" sitting area for guests just inside the door. That layout could make the whole thing novel, yet familiar to new guests.

Double-check that rear emergency door height. Maybe it varies among brands and years. The emergency door on my former 1991 Blue Bird front engine flat nose was the same height as the side windows. The opening must have been around 48-54 inches. I'm about six feet tall, had to bend over a fair amount to walk through, and at least once scraped my back on the top of that doorway. Ouch!
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:09 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
no it isn't.. honestly he was probably just a bit ignorant.
Its not really a big deal. I definitely wouldn't buy a bus simply based on the presence of factory flooring. A good number of us rip that out anyway.
Are you talking about "no pain dave" on Youtube?
It was "no stress Mike" ...probably the same person. He did not strike me as very knowledgeable. I kind of look at it as, if it's in good shape then I would (presumably) already have a surface suitable for flooring without spending on plywood, BUT if it has had any moisture to it then there is probably surface rust on the metal beneath it. So it could be good or bad. Why do some rip it out? Damage?
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:18 PM   #34
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Originally Posted by bus-ted View Post
Hi Misi-
I used to dwell in Lawrence, KS, and when there, they had a fairly nice bus dealer- Midwest Bus, if I remember correctly.
Also, there are a few different packages offered in the bus world- climate being a big factor. One great thing I like about school buses from the cold Northern climes, is that they all have a Winter package- more insulation- in the walls & floors
As I've mentioned, I'm avoiding dealers so that I can buy as cheaply as possible. I pretty much have to buy at no more that $3,500.

I did not know that about winter packages though, thanks.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:24 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by family wagon View Post
I think rear entry sounds like a great idea
Excuse me while I roll around laughing for the next several moments. I had envisioned the necessity to put some sort of sign on the front door to direct people who came knocking...now the whole thing is made HILARIOUS! Oh the signs I'm seeing in my head! LMAO
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:34 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by family wagon View Post
Depending on how you feel about stairs eating up your interior space the entry through the rear wall might be a really nice design. You could build stairs that mount on the outside of the bus and remove, flip up, etc for travel. I think rear entry sounds like a great idea, especially if you want to have some "living room" sitting area for guests just inside the door.
I'm not understanding how stairs in the rear would eat up interior space but...
What I have in mind is a couple of different options. One, if I could get away with it as far as maximum length of vehicle allowed on the road, would be to have additional steel frame welded onto the rear making a porch...stairs that would flip up onto that for travel. Another would be essentially the same thing but really just a frame, that either flips up or is removable, with removable decking boards. My floor plans allows for about 8 feet of living room space.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:35 PM   #37
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Yeah, I kept seeing notes about automatic tire chains. I have no idea what that is but I picture tire chains hanging in the fenders waiting to be deployed at the touch of a button. Yikes.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:37 PM   #38
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That's pretty much exactly what automatic tire chains are.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:23 PM   #39
Skoolie
 
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Year: 1978
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Engine: 406 Ford
Rated Cap: 25
Well, prices are different everywhere, but I just bought a '93 FE Amtran Genisis for $2500- marked down from $3200. It was from a dealer- Harlow's. They were eager to clear out some of their older stock, and I got a sweet deal, imo. It needs nothing (yet), and I don't really foresee it needing anything in the immediate. It starts great, runs great, stops great.
Anyhow, just thought I'd suggest it again, because not all dealers are crooks.
And if you're able, try and look up Midwest Bus. I was seriously considering a bus from them. They had many to choose from, and were willing to make a deal- I just happened upon a better deal. If you sweet talk the mechanic that services the buses, you could likely get him to point you out to a choicer bus!
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Old 02-25-2015, 03:00 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Misi View Post
It was "no stress Mike" ...probably the same person. He did not strike me as very knowledgeable. I kind of look at it as, if it's in good shape then I would (presumably) already have a surface suitable for flooring without spending on plywood, BUT if it has had any moisture to it then there is probably surface rust on the metal beneath it. So it could be good or bad. Why do some rip it out? Damage?
Some of us rip out everything to rust proof and/or insulate.
The "northern insulation" is probably just fiberglass batting. Not really worth much.
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