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Old 04-26-2016, 11:23 PM   #11
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: chicago, il
Posts: 220
Year: 2003
Chassis: IC CE
Engine: T444
2) Tips for initial gutting of the bus (tools needed and such)
an angle grinder, an impact driver or drill, a large crow bar, eye protection, ear protections, a breathing/painters industrial mask, head cover/rag. Lots of #2, #3 bits, at least 5 angle grinding disk (the thicker 1/8in one's). A place to recycle the gutted material

3) Is insulating a good idea? (we plan on making this our primary mobile residence for the winter & will be in cold and snowy areas in the Rockies ski touring, with wood burning stove)
Yes!!!! especially because you want to live in it during the winter. R10-R14 is achievable in 2 inches.

4) Links to forum threads on installation of a bed and storage etc...
That would take awhile, i suggest youtube search as a lot of helpful videos are available there.

Additional information make sure you have easily accessed power for your power tools. Otherwise your project will hinge on a generator and fuels costs can slowly add up. Make sure you have work clothes you do not mind getting destroyed. the greywater tank installation will depend on if it is internal or you build an external structure to house it one. If it is internal it is easily kept in place by wood structures. If you make the greywater external and go to subzero climates you will need to insulate the external bay and make sure it gets heated or can maintain above freezing temps. it can be as complex or as simple as you want. side note a sauna? what are you giving up in return for that space?
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Old 04-27-2016, 07:58 AM   #12
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torque and HP ratings mean nothing until you look at the RPM curves.. just max HP and max torque are what the ratings are usually listed as.. however typically an Inline engine reaches peak torque at a nice LOWER RPM compared to a V-series engine.. so it all depends on what you are doing.. in my opinion a bus is going to spend most of its time requiring HP and torque at lower RPM..

this also depends on how the engine is built.. camshafts, fuel injector timing, shot amount, etc.. the engines are often tuned for what the main purpose of the vehicle is.. ie a school bus engine will be tuned more for slower speed urban environments.. as to maintain driveability and MPG's in that environment..

turning it into a motorhome that crosses the country, it may not be optimal.. the newer electronic busses are more complex but will tend to adapt themselves to changing driving conditions..
-Christopher
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Old 04-27-2016, 09:37 AM   #13
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Location: GA, by way of NC and VA
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Year: 1995
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Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
if you are going to run the bus in the dusty west i would choose a non-electronic engine if you can, though they are tough to find in busses newer than 1995.. the electronics are of course more susceptible to dirt getting in connections, vibration, wild temperature swings.. not to say electronic engines are not reliable, because many are.. but as they age they can become susceptible to the things above..

that said, I have run my Jeep wranglers over canyonlands, moab, etc without issue and they are far more electronic..

blue-bird busses are good heavy busses.. as are thomes and carpenter.. my carpenter is a 7 row and has a GVWR of 27500 so its a HEAVY bus...

the DT466 is more powerful than a DT360 .. if you are pulling hills you will want the MT643 transmission much more than the AT545...

-Christopher

What if, while parked in the dusty West, you cover the hood/grill with a tarp?
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Old 04-27-2016, 09:45 AM   #14
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Remember this, wood burning stoves require wood, require space, shorties don't have much of........

Water is about 8 lbs per gallon. A 50 gallon tank would add about 400 lbs if you were deciding to run with it completely full, which is something most never do. Remember a 55 gallon barrel is close to the size you'd need for a tank, but can get them flatter and more narrow if need be. As far as the shower goes, I'd recommend an on demand propane style. The Eccotemp L5 is what I bought. I tried it out just hooked up to a garden hose and a gas grill bottle. It is fantastic! Robot Check

Welcome to the group and good luck on your hunt!

-Doc
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Old 04-27-2016, 11:30 AM   #15
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Location: Willamina, Oregon
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I agree with Doc. The wood stove isn't such a space hog, the wood itself takes a lot of room and it's always dirty and carries bugs. That's why people store their firewood outside.
I do have a wood stove in my bus, and it's not tiny. However during the winter I'm parked in my driveway and have access to a wood pile. If you're traveling at all firewood is difficult to find in most camping areas because people have been picking it up and burning it for years. Then there's the people that sell little bundles of firewood for $5 or $8, good for about a 30 minute fire to cook on or heat.
I'm still tickled about having a wheel chair lift because I'm going to wheel that wood stove right out of the bus until the weather gets cold again.
A wood stove is marvelous compared to propane, and it comes with it's own built in exercise. Sometimes you just don't need the heat as long as a fire will last, like on cool mornings when your feet are cold. Then propane for off grid and small electric heater for with shore power.

I'm amazed at the amount of automation people are installing into their buses on this site. These are not hippy buses you guys are building. Everyone is so concerned with safety and efficiency. Pretty cool.
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Old 04-27-2016, 12:03 PM   #16
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Toilet first priority when traveling.. After a couple public restrooms most will agree on this one.

I'd have my own toilet if i had to stick it on the roof,.

Our shorty does NOT like hills. But it gets up my daughters N.Georgia incline from hell driveway and going down is always a breath holder. .
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Old 04-27-2016, 12:49 PM   #17
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Yeah, there does need to be some kind of basic facilities.
What is astounding to me is the cleanliness, or uncleanliness, of public restrooms around the country. Here in the NW public restrooms are generally quite clean in comparison, but while traveling along the southern border most public restrooms had copious amounts of skin flakes on the toilet seats. The kind of situation that makes you clench your cheeks and leave unsatisfied. We kept renting motels to get access to a clean toilet and avoided bringing home any new skin conditions.

That toilet on the roof. Good gravity flow, but I'd install some hand rails.
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Old 04-27-2016, 01:04 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Robin97396 View Post
Yeah, there does need to be some kind of basic facilities.
What is astounding to me is the cleanliness, or uncleanliness, of public restrooms around the country. Here in the NW public restrooms are generally quite clean in comparison, but while traveling along the southern border most public restrooms had copious amounts of skin flakes on the toilet seats. The kind of situation that makes you clench your cheeks and leave unsatisfied. We kept renting motels to get access to a clean toilet and avoided bringing home any new skin conditions.

That toilet on the roof. Good gravity flow, but I'd install some hand rails.

,darn forgot the hand rails, thanks for the 'heads up'.
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Old 04-27-2016, 01:25 PM   #19
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Yeah, when that bus is going down the highway and you're up there on the roof doing your thing you might need those hand rails.

I can visualize bits of tissue getting away at cruising speeds.

Ok, no more sideline toilet jokes. It's a serious issue, at times.
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Old 04-27-2016, 01:25 PM   #20
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well if your looking to save space and time, a kitty litter latrine isn't a terrible option, after you're finished, just add more litter, when you reach your dumping point, pull the bag, tie it up, and in the garbage it goes!
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