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Old 10-16-2017, 10:08 PM   #1
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New to the world of Skoolies!

I am interested in the idea of converting a school bus into a semi-simple, family-friendly RV. I've been in love with RV's forever and I really like some of the conversions I've found on this site. I have some general skills with wood (not as much with metal). I work for a school district as a band director and I have recently talked with our transportation supervisor and learned that the district is planning on retiring some buses soon. The same supervisor told me he would be happy to help me remove the seats if I were to purchase one of the buses. I am hoping that I can find some helpful information and helpful people to help guide me through the conversion process.

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Old 10-16-2017, 11:39 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by bandman894 View Post
I am interested in the idea of converting a school bus into a semi-simple, family-friendly RV. I've been in love with RV's forever and I really like some of the conversions I've found on this site. I have some general skills with wood (not as much with metal). I work for a school district as a band director and I have recently talked with our transportation supervisor and learned that the district is planning on retiring some buses soon. The same supervisor told me he would be happy to help me remove the seats if I were to purchase one of the buses. I am hoping that I can find some helpful information and helpful people to help guide me through the conversion process.

bandman894
Well, you know all about the buses with basement storage and highway gears, so you'd want an activity bus.

Tell us more about where you are located and what you want out of your RV, how many people/pets.

You have a huge leg-up on most with your bus connection. What instrument did you play? I played sax, but I don't like to toot my own horn.
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Old 10-17-2017, 05:34 PM   #3
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Well, you know all about the buses with basement storage and highway gears, so you'd want an activity bus.

Tell us more about where you are located and what you want out of your RV, how many people/pets.

You have a huge leg-up on most with your bus connection. What instrument did you play? I played sax, but I don't like to toot my own horn.
There are actually two buses that I'm looking at. One is an 84 passenger that can (according to our bus supervisor) hit 80 on the interstate, but it does not have any under-carriage storage. The other bus is a 77 passenger (basically one row of seating shorter) and is governed around 68, but has under-carriage storage. Do you think it's worth it to have the under-carriage or should I look for the extra horsepower and length?
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Old 10-17-2017, 05:43 PM   #4
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There are actually two buses that I'm looking at. One is an 84 passenger that can (according to our bus supervisor) hit 80 on the interstate, but it does not have any under-carriage storage. The other bus is a 77 passenger (basically one row of seating shorter) and is governed around 68, but has under-carriage storage. Do you think it's worth it to have the under-carriage or should I look for the extra horsepower and length?
Storage Storage Storage
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Old 10-17-2017, 06:46 PM   #5
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Btw...I was a saxophone player when l was in college. I haven't played a lot since I've been directing for 20 years.
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:31 PM   #6
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Basement definitely.
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:05 PM   #7
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Do you think it's worth it to have the under-carriage or should I look for the extra horsepower and length?
68 Mph is plenty fast. Buy your buddy lunch and ask him to take you for a spin in both, trust his recommendations.

I'd prefer a shorter bus than 40' unless you have a big troupe. More horsepower is nice if you are towing a vehicle.

Give us the engine and trans specs for both buses- Tires are spendy, rust bites and headroom is a big consideration. There is usually a sticker above windshield- post the pics and we'll chime in.

What State are you in ???
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:26 PM   #8
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I'm in Arkansas. I'll try to get some bus pics I can post pretty soon. Maybe before the weekend. I'm in the north-central part of the state near Russellville.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:49 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by bandman894 View Post
There are actually two buses that I'm looking at. One is an 84 passenger that can (according to our bus supervisor) hit 80 on the interstate, but it does not have any under-carriage storage. The other bus is a 77 passenger (basically one row of seating shorter) and is governed around 68, but has under-carriage storage. Do you think it's worth it to have the under-carriage or should I look for the extra horsepower and length?
Take the HP and length. Storage can be added much easier.
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Old 10-18-2017, 12:16 PM   #10
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Tell us more about where you are located and what you want out of your RV, how many people/pets.
In reference to Rusty's question, I am in the north-central or west-central part of the state of Arkansas in the foothills of the Ozark mountains. I probably won't stay a whole lot in national or state parks, so boondocking will probably happen often. When I vacation, I usually am not staying out a full week, but 2 weeks might occur rarely. Right now, it's my 3 kids ( 18, 13, and 8 ) and my wife and me. I need a bus that can pull hills but hopefully will be on interstate most of the time. I don't want to overcomplicate the bus, so I'm thinking maybe a composting toilet instead of plumbing in a black tank. The cooking arrangements will probably be simplified as well. We'll use a microwave and a small dorm-style fridge. We will need a TV and power for a gaming system and movies for the kids. I want to build a 3-tier bunk for the kids and have a full/queen size bed in the back for my wife and I. I would also like to have a roof a/c unit and wifi hotspot for the bus. I'm also considering back-up camera(s) and laminate flooring. I want it to look relaxing and homey, but not necessarily "fancy."

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