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Old 08-25-2019, 01:18 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 23
Newbie in SF Bay Area needs advice

THANK YOU all for this great site. Been reading for 2 years. Now I have the money, the plan and am looking for the bus.

About me: long time resident of San Francisco Bay Area ready for one last long-as-it-lasts full time road trip. I am over 60, use a wheelchair, don’t drive, and never met a challenge I couldn’t solve with ingenuity, community and laughter.

WHAT I NEED in a bus:
• insulated and finished structure (insulation and walls, flooring and ceiling panels)
• boondock capable power and water systems
• mid-size
• strong engine with low “this always breaks” problems
• automatic transmission
• good tires
• rust dealt with


WOULD BE NICE to have with purchase:
• fridge
• individual portable induction burners
• composting toilet
• lithium batteries
• inverter
• LED lights
• generator
• easy to open windows
• wheelchair lift (but this is easy to find so not a big need)
• bathtub


WHAT I DO NOT need in the bus I purchase:
• furniture (I will take it out to make interior wheelchair accessible in ways that work best for me)
• stove / oven
• any bus seats
• shower


WHAT I HAVE:
• layout plans
• decisions about cooking (portable induction burners), sleeping (2 bunk beds), work area (one long counter with built-in kitchen sink at one end), toilet (composting)
• lots of commitment, designated builder helpers (but now skoolie-literate), sense of humor


STILL FIGURING OUT
• fridge (upright or horizontal on pull-out slides)
• adding self-operated lifting system (for getting in and out when no power)

THANK YOU for any advice or suggestions.

Corbett O
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Old 08-25-2019, 01:39 PM   #2
Bus Geek
 
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
Posts: 7,551
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Genesis
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466/3060
Rated Cap: 77
What's your budget?
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Old 08-25-2019, 02:02 PM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 23
Thanks for the question. For the bus it really depends on what it comes with. For the entire conversion, want to keep everything except the furniture under 15k.
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Old 08-25-2019, 06:17 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
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Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Huntington beach
Posts: 700
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: T/C 2000 28 foot Handy Bus
Engine: Cummins 5.9 Mechanical
Rated Cap: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by CorbettO View Post
THANK YOU all for this great site. Been reading for 2 years. Now I have the money, the plan and am looking for the bus.

About me: long time resident of San Francisco Bay Area ready for one last long-as-it-lasts full time road trip. I am over 60, use a wheelchair, don’t drive, and never met a challenge I couldn’t solve with ingenuity, community and laughter.

WHAT I NEED in a bus:
• insulated and finished structure (insulation and walls, flooring and ceiling panels)
• boondock capable power and water systems
• mid-size
• strong engine with low “this always breaks” problems
• automatic transmission
• good tires
• rust dealt with


WOULD BE NICE to have with purchase:
• fridge
• individual portable induction burners
• composting toilet
• lithium batteries
• inverter
• LED lights
• generator
• easy to open windows
• wheelchair lift (but this is easy to find so not a big need)
• bathtub


WHAT I DO NOT need in the bus I purchase:
• furniture (I will take it out to make interior wheelchair accessible in ways that work best for me)
• stove / oven
• any bus seats
• shower


WHAT I HAVE:
• layout plans
• decisions about cooking (portable induction burners), sleeping (2 bunk beds), work area (one long counter with built-in kitchen sink at one end), toilet (composting)
• lots of commitment, designated builder helpers (but now skoolie-literate), sense of humor


STILL FIGURING OUT
• fridge (upright or horizontal on pull-out slides)
• adding self-operated lifting system (for getting in and out when no power)

THANK YOU for any advice or suggestions.

Corbett O
Do you have a place to park it?
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Old 08-25-2019, 08:14 PM   #5
Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Fresnope, CA
Posts: 109
Quote:
Originally Posted by CorbettO View Post
ready for one last long-as-it-lasts full time road trip. I am over 60, use a wheelchair, don’t drive,


Corbett O
I seem to be missing something here?
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Old 08-25-2019, 08:43 PM   #6
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Central MN
Posts: 148
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC RE
Engine: 8.3L
Maybe someone is going with the OP?
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Old 08-25-2019, 09:34 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 23
JustKip,

Yes I have a place to store and to work on it. It's a storage place with a wood and metal shop.

CorbettO
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Old 08-25-2019, 09:37 PM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
Posts: 23
JustKip,
Not sure what you are asking but happy to answer your questions.

I am planning on living in the bus full time with frequent long stops (2-4 weeks). Either a friend will join me to do the driving or I will hire a driver to get me from one long stop campground to the next.

CorbettO
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Old 08-25-2019, 11:10 PM   #9
Bus Nut
 
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Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Huntington beach
Posts: 700
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: T/C 2000 28 foot Handy Bus
Engine: Cummins 5.9 Mechanical
Rated Cap: 2
Quote:
Originally Posted by CorbettO View Post
JustKip,

Yes I have a place to store and to work on it. It's a storage place with a wood and metal shop.

CorbettO
Congrats you have just passed the biggest hurdle . Everything now will be a matter of budget, timing and the aranngement of talent to help you. My advice would be to get whatever you buy in 110% mechanical condition as your first priority. If you are disabled, you have no room for breakdowns. Attempt minamalist approach as you start and build on that. Good Luck!!
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Old 08-25-2019, 11:17 PM   #10
Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Fresnope, CA
Posts: 109
Quote:
Originally Posted by CorbettO View Post
JustKip,
Not sure what you are asking but happy to answer your questions.

I am planning on living in the bus full time with frequent long stops (2-4 weeks). Either a friend will join me to do the driving or I will hire a driver to get me from one long stop campground to the next.

CorbettO
Sounds like a great plan!

I think that, although you're right about how many used chair lifts there are out there for cheap, the wheelchair lift door itself would make a huge difference, as I think those doors are a little wider than the folding door in front.
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