Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-24-2016, 06:25 AM   #1
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 7
Hello old skoolies

I've been following your forum for a few days now, finding most of it helpful with things I haven't and have thought about. I'm thinking about jumping into the RV world full time, I initially picked out a 1990's toyota micro/mini, but decided I wanted to haul my 2000 chevy metro just for convenience and ease of use if I find local work from place to place, Has anyone had issues with the back end bouncing when it comes to trailers, I remember that would be my favorite place to sit because one bump on the route to school would launch me up out of my seat. I have tracked down a potential victim, 1997 navistar 3800, with the T444E powerplant mated to a 5 speed, with 170K, asking $2500. She's a mid size compared to most I've seen on here 47 capacity aka 8 window, leaving me with I'm guessing around 20' of living space.

My goals are to withstand below freezing temps, my budget is around $5000, what tips tricks hindsight do you have to offer for making this machine little more airtight, and not worry about plumbing freezing out. I remember sitting on a bus as a kid and hating the drafty window seats, I've thought about deleting most of the windows with sheet metal and foam board, any upgrades when it comes to a view?

I've located most appliances used on my local CL, and Ebay, my only setback is choice between a 3 way fridge/freezer or an A/C power 7/10 cubic foot dorm size fridge/freezer ($650 vs $120). I would love the option to boondock, even if it were for a few days. Up front I don't want to buy an electric generator/solar but would like to leave the option. I've thought about tank sizes, at least 46 gallon tank with a 50 gal grey/black, I want to divert most of my grey water out and away. I've also had issues trying to set up the bathroom, I'm trying to find the shower/toilet/sink pan & liner all in one. i'm looking for just enough room to sit on the toilet pre rinse, lather & scrub then rinse off, so maybe 24x36, I understand the curved roof poses quite a problem for my nearly 6' I just want to engineer it to be fool proof, leak free. Lastly i'm torn between heating and cooling, I do own a small wood stove (32Lx25Hx16W) this would be prefect for to put next to the front entrance, but I'm not sure how much more I would have to spend into fire proofing VS buying a propane or diesel heater, Has anyone had luck with diesel semi cab heaters, I know diesel is cheaper but as far as how gallons compute to BTU is beyond me, and lastly I could kill two birds with one stone and get a complete heating and cooling roof unit, but then I would have less chances of boondocking. I'm glad to hear any ones 2 cents, I see a lot of good info, excited to see if anyone can talk me into pulling the trigger!!!
dodgeoboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2016, 09:32 AM   #2
Bus Crazy
 
Scooternj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: EHT New Jersey
Posts: 1,134
Year: 2003
Coachwork: AmTran
Chassis: International 3000RE
Engine: T444E/AT545
Rated Cap: 75
You may want to look for a newer International, 2000 or later, if you don't plan a roof raise. They have 12" windows, which'll give you more headroom inside, even if you have to lose some to insulate the floor. Since you're planning on fulltiming, gut it down to the ribs, top to bottom. This will allow you to replace the crappy fiberglass insulation with foam- either spray or board.

As for upgrades with windows, RV windows would work better. Just remember that two ribs per three school bus windows, and box frame the new window hole.
__________________
Hey! That's not an RV, that's a school bus.
Well thank you for noticing, Captain Obvious

Captain Obvious on deviantArt
Scooternj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2016, 09:45 AM   #3
Bus Nut
 
skoolie_n00bie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 447
Year: 1988
Coachwork: Ward
Chassis: International
Engine: Navistar 5.9 Diesel
Rated Cap: A butt-load...
Cool Welcome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
I've been following your forum for a few days now, finding most of it helpful with things I haven't and have thought about. I'm thinking about jumping into the RV world full time, I initially picked out a 1990's toyota micro/mini, but decided I wanted to haul my 2000 chevy metro just for convenience and ease of use if I find local work from place to place, Has anyone had issues with the back end bouncing when it comes to trailers, I remember that would be my favorite place to sit because one bump on the route to school would launch me up out of my seat. I have tracked down a potential victim, 1997 navistar 3800, with the T444E powerplant mated to a 5 speed, with 170K, asking $2500. She's a mid size compared to most I've seen on here 47 capacity aka 8 window, leaving me with I'm guessing around 20' of living space.
From what you tell us about the bus, seems in good condition, and I'm sure the power-train is more than capable of towing your compact car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
My goals are to withstand below freezing temps, my budget is around $5000, what tips tricks hindsight do you have to offer for making this machine little more airtight, and not worry about plumbing freezing out. I remember sitting on a bus as a kid and hating the drafty window seats, I've thought about deleting most of the windows with sheet metal and foam board, any upgrades when it comes to a view?
As far as "extreme temps" withstanding, insulation is key. Find what works best for you for example on "usability vs cost"; some people go all out and spray foam (almost) every surface of the bus. Other use styrofoam of rolls of fiberglass.
Sure, lots of people on large scale conversions replace windows with sheet metal, then strategically put RV windows based on inside floor model.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
I've located most appliances used on my local CL, and Ebay, my only setback is choice between a 3 way fridge/freezer or an A/C power 7/10 cubic foot dorm size fridge/freezer ($650 vs $120). I would love the option to boondock, even if it were for a few days. Up front I don't want to buy an electric generator/solar but would like to leave the option.
When you get used appliances, I'd be careful not to get them too old, and try to get energy efficient ones. You don't want to buy someone else's headaches...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
I've thought about tank sizes, at least 46 gallon tank with a 50 gal grey/black, I want to divert most of my grey water out and away. I've also had issues trying to set up the bathroom, I'm trying to find the shower/toilet/sink pan & liner all in one. i'm looking for just enough room to sit on the toilet pre rinse, lather & scrub then rinse off, so maybe 24x36, I understand the curved roof poses quite a problem for my nearly 6' I just want to engineer it to be fool proof, leak free.
I have a 33gal fresh water, and am expecting to use our "camper" only for week-ends at a time. If you are planning on boon-docking a lot, you might want to consider something larger. However, you know how much water you use better than anyone else
Can't say much about the shower part, as my plan for that is...baby wipes!
If cutting the curves of the shower stall (or any other divider wall for that matter...) is in question, start collecting large cardboard boxes (full size fridge), so you can use them for templates. More on that here
As far as headroom....well...if your bus doesn't have it, either raise the roof...or chop your feet at the ankles...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
Lastly i'm torn between heating and cooling, I do own a small wood stove (32Lx25Hx16W) this would be prefect for to put next to the front entrance, but I'm not sure how much more I would have to spend into fire proofing VS buying a propane or diesel heater, Has anyone had luck with diesel semi cab heaters, I know diesel is cheaper but as far as how gallons compute to BTU is beyond me, and lastly I could kill two birds with one stone and get a complete heating and cooling roof unit, but then I would have less chances of boondocking. I'm glad to hear any ones 2 cents, I see a lot of good info, excited to see if anyone can talk me into pulling the trigger!!!
Unfortunately, i don't have much experience with wood stoves or gas/diesel heaters to give any input Best suggestion i can give is, if you go the wood, gas or diesel route: make sure to have smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. And always use them with a window ajar.

I'm sure everyone else will start to chime in soon, so if i'm BSing, guys please keep me honest.

Break a leg on your journey, and have fun!
__________________
n00b build > http://www.skoolie.net/forums/f27/th...ily-10122.html
Not my fault if anything I post results in someone losing a finger...
Errare humanum est, perseverare diabolicum
skoolie_n00bie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2016, 10:36 AM   #4
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 7
All very solid points, I'm pretty sold on the bus being its a manual, I'm not so worried about the roof I spend most of my time in my living space sitting or sleeping haha.

I thought about initially doubling my fresh tanks, but I decided against it being I can add one later if I'm going to hide them under my bed to keep away the cold, I would rather spend that money on spray foam, good tip I forgot all about that.

As for used appliances I'm trying to work on a tight budget and I agree I believe in "buy it once buy it right" I feel a $100 used 4 gal water heater is better than a $600 tankless I can afford later, and I would love to drop $1500 brand new 3way fridge ice making freezer, a used $120 ac power will keep my groceries fresh just the same for now. But who knows I have a house full of junk and a 1967 charger I never got around to restoring and a 87 ram 50 4x4 I never finished putting a turbo on, so I may have a bigger budget later.

Has anyone taken the time to make there own fibreglass bathroom, I've seen people tile but I just see lbs racking in my brain. As for water usage I'm at 400 gal a month on my home bill but that's 15 min showers every day flushing toilet washer with the occasional use of the garden hose.
dodgeoboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-24-2016, 12:57 PM   #5
New Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeoboy View Post
Has anyone taken the time to make there own fibreglass bathroom, I've seen people tile but I just see lbs racking in my brain. As for water usage I'm at 400 gal a month on my home bill but that's 15 min showers every day flushing toilet washer with the occasional use of the garden hose.
I think I've answered my own bathroom question about making my own fiberglass bathroom thoughts?
dodgeoboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:51 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.