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Old 10-21-2017, 10:27 AM   #1
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Introducing Dazzling Blue

Hi Everyone,
We are Drew and Kristen, on July 26, 2017 we won an online public surplus auction for a 65 passenger 1996 Amtran with a mechanical DT466 250HP engine paired with an MT643. It's got air brakes and a retarder, air ride in the back, automatic chains, storage bins, a Bostrom air ride driver seat, and as we found out over the last 3 days of driving a great attitude, too!
The bus was owned by the same school for it's entire life and came with 21 years of service records, plus the manuals for everything from the engine, to the retarder, to the seat, and even the radio!
Since the bus was located around Vale, CO and we're outside of Chicago we hired Josh at Tiny Visions, Inc to check it and the 3 other buses on the auction before we started bidding. He told us which was the pick of the litter and we managed to win it (sorry EastCoastCB ! That started our relationship with Josh (a wonderful young man!). We then hired him to pick up the bus for us and do all of the grunt work that we knew we didn't have the time, space, or energy to get done.


On Oct 11th we left Chicago with a salvaged RV seat in the back of our Nissan truck, as well as a tow bar and various tools. Met Josh on the morning of the 13th and got to work installing that stuff and learning to drive the bus. By the 18th we were ready to hit the road for our first adventure in Dazzling Blue (thus named for the Paul Simon tune, as well as the vibrant paint job).

After 3 very full days and around 1200 miles of driving we just gotta say OMG WHAT A BUS!!! She likes best to run between 56-58 mph, but will go faster without complaint. We don't know how much faster because our towed has a 60mph limit, but the times we needed to pass on the highway we easily got to 65. She pulled long steep hills like a champ, even with the 5000lb truck tied to her.

We will spend the winter building it into our home, hopefully to have it mostly completed by the spring. Drew gets to retire in July 2018 after 30 years of drafting for the city of Chicago. We'll spend the summer accenting the charm of our 90 year old bungalow while trying to downplay it's not so charming aspects, and hopefully get the house sold and hit the road full time by fall of 2018.

We're so grateful for all the resources and amazing people this site has to offer, and we're happy to be a part of the skoolie community!

Kristen
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Old 10-21-2017, 11:03 AM   #2
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Welcome!

how exciting, a brand new adventure. That bus has the creme of the crop, wow.
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Old 10-21-2017, 11:27 AM   #3
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Welcome and thanks for the really good intro---arg, 30 yrs at anything, you more than deserve some fun travel time! Jack
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Old 10-21-2017, 06:42 PM   #4
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Thanks Carytowncat, it sure seemed to check all the boxes when we were bidding on it, but we didn't know what we'd really gotten into until last week when we got to see and drive it. Total lucky break!

Hi ol trunt, and thank you. Drew's a trooper, all right! Poor man has spent 30 years at a desk in a small room with 5 other people. If it had been up to me we'd have been living under a bridge somewhere eating dandelions! I got to stay home and raise our 3 sons while growing a bunch of vegetable to shove in their always hungry faces. A much better deal
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Old 10-21-2017, 07:22 PM   #5
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Ha! I had been bidding on that bus! I wondered who got it. I even had Turf ready to drive it to FL for me.
If you ever get rid of it I want first dibs!
It would be great to come up with a way of saving ourselves from bidding against each other.
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Old 10-21-2017, 07:34 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
Ha! I had been bidding on that bus! I wondered who got it. I even had Turf ready to drive it to FL for me.
If you ever get rid of it I want first dibs!
I won't be beaten again, next year I can buy ANY bus I want.
I know you were bidding, and I want to feel bad for you but I'm just too happy for us! We promise to bring it 'round your way when we're full timing, we'd love to meet you!
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Old 10-21-2017, 07:36 PM   #7
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I no longer publicly mention the GOOD buses any more. Not unless I'm SURE I can't win.
Congrats on a great bus. Keep good care of my baby!
And yeah, bring it to FL anytime- we'd love "visitation rights" lol.
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Old 10-21-2017, 07:53 PM   #8
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Welcome! Mighty sweet combo you found there. Keep the pics coming.
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Old 10-21-2017, 07:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
I no longer publicly mention the GOOD buses any more. Not unless I'm SURE I can't win.
Congrats on a great bus. Keep good care of my baby!
And yeah, bring it to FL anytime- we'd love "visitation rights" lol.

Thanks! We'll bring it to Florida eventually, we want to make it to one of the Skoolie meetups, and it seems like there's a lot of folks from FL. We're looking forward to a winter vacation somewhere on the gulf. We ended up bidding against a rafting outfit that was bidding on all of those Vail buses.....I think they got 2 of the 4.
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Old 10-21-2017, 08:19 PM   #10
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Hi Tango, thanks!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg DBpassengerside.JPG (585.7 KB, 43 views)
File Type: jpg DBfrontdoor.jpg (250.1 KB, 35 views)
File Type: jpeg DBSeat.jpeg (274.4 KB, 39 views)
File Type: jpeg DBinside.jpeg (285.6 KB, 43 views)
File Type: jpeg DBBackdoor.jpeg (268.6 KB, 31 views)
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Old 10-21-2017, 08:52 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Drew Bru View Post
Thanks! We'll bring it to Florida eventually, we want to make it to one of the Skoolie meetups, and it seems like there's a lot of folks from FL. We're looking forward to a winter vacation somewhere on the gulf. We ended up bidding against a rafting outfit that was bidding on all of those Vail buses.....I think they got 2 of the 4.
So glad it went to a GOOD home!
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:04 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
It would be great to come up with a way of saving ourselves from bidding against each other.
We didn't know you were bidding on that bus until after we won, but you're right it would be nice not to drive the price up against each other.
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:19 PM   #13
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We didn't know you were bidding on that bus until after we won, but you're right it would be nice not to drive the price up against each other.
I just wanna find out who's got the shorty I was looking at in NY.
Too much rust underneath and a top speed of 55 kept my bidding very low.
I like the color scheme yall got goin on, btw.
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Old 10-21-2017, 09:55 PM   #14
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what a cool bus!!! its kept the classic WARD lines to it!! neat!! just be careful of that windshield!!!
-Christopher
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Old 10-21-2017, 10:06 PM   #15
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just be careful of that windshield!!!
-Christopher
Uh oh, Why? It's already got a chip in it
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Old 10-21-2017, 10:52 PM   #16
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a chip can be fixed.. I only say that because it is a wierd shape.. those werent made much after 96.. a glass place might have to cutom make that windshield unless someone has new old stock on it.. but a chip is no big deal.. chip repair at a windshield place like safelite auto glass can do it pretty cheaply without replacement.
-Christopher
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Old 10-21-2017, 11:07 PM   #17
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Kristen,

What auction site did you find your bus on? Where do most of the Colorado busses sell? I've been watching gov deals and public surplus but havn't seen much.

Thanks

Ted
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Old 10-21-2017, 11:19 PM   #18
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Kristen,

What auction site did you find your bus on? Where do most of the Colorado busses sell? I've been watching gov deals and public surplus but havn't seen much.

Thanks

Ted
Never mind I answeared my own question. This would have been one of the "supreme busses" EastCoast told me I had just missed on public surplus.

Congratulations on the nice bus!

Ted
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Old 10-22-2017, 01:52 AM   #19
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It would be great to come up with a way of saving ourselves from bidding against each other.
It might be easier for you to tell us which buses you aren't bidding on.
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Old 10-22-2017, 06:53 AM   #20
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Kristen,

What auction site did you find your bus on? Where do most of the Colorado busses sell? I've been watching gov deals and public surplus but havn't seen much.

Thanks

Ted
It was on Public Surplus.
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