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Old 03-28-2019, 02:08 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: dover, nh
Posts: 16
Am I going for a Unicorn? :|

So, a bit over a year from my introduction post (and ~3.5 years sooner than "planned") we've pretty much hit our financial goals for being able to start the bus search. I've spent a lot of time reading, and reading, and reading, and watching youtube too, so I'm now pretty confident that I'll be able to do most of what I'd like to accomplish in the build (I'm the handy one in the house). The current next "step" is asking the older gentleman down the street if we can rent a spot on his empty lot (he "farms" half of it, the other half is bare), and he's generally really nice and talks to me and my son when we're outside so I'm crossing my fingers it'll be a yes.

Once that's accomplished, or some alternative site is secured, the bus search will really begin. I'm worried that it might be hard to find what I want, any make/model RE with 8.3 Cummins or DT466 and one of the Allison 3000 series transmissions, little rust, and while not absolutely necessary, I'd like it to have a high top and storage underneath. BF is only 5'5" and I'm 5'4" so we could survive a regular height roof, but I think I'd like the open feel of a few more inches. The budget for the bus is probably roughly 10k, though I'd obviously like to spend less, but would definitely pay more if we found something that hit every single mark. We have no timeline though, so I guess we can wait as long as necessary for the right bus (even though I'm itching to build like so freakin' hard).

I originally considered a roof raise, but ehhh I guess I don't feel super confident in my ability to do that, and wouldn't want to raise it very high anyway so I'm ditching that idea. I'm probably going to be the one doing the majority of the conversion, my sibling is a carpenter so they can help with building out the inside if necessary, and the BF will probably help when he's not working.

Other thoughts: Might title in Vermont (we live in NH so we could even get it inspected) just for simplicity, but there is no insurance requirement for vehicles in my state so at least while building it that won't be an expense, we'll "discover" the fun of trying to get insurance once we're road-ready I guess. Considering buying a small bit of land here, just so we have an address/home base, but also maybe some of the really cheap AZ land to sit on if we ever feel like not moving for a while in warmer weather.

Anyway, I think I just mostly wanted opinions on whether or not this is going to be difficult to find :3


Oh, one more note, does anyone know if there's a Discord server for Skoolies? (It's basically 2019 AIM) I'd love the ability to pick brains in real time instead of forums that I may or may not forget to check
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Old 03-28-2019, 02:25 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 18,268
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
Sounds like a standard RE bus out west would fit your needs. Watch WA, OR, CA and that area.
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Old 03-28-2019, 02:35 PM   #3
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 4,801
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE (A3RE)
Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
Rated Cap: 72
Not a unicorn..,

I found my 8.3, MD3060 RE Bluebird at auction in Oregon. 170k miles and no rust problems.

Bid $3450 and won.
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Old 03-28-2019, 02:49 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: dover, nh
Posts: 16
Yay! That's what I wanted to hear

Now, time to be patient. Patient-er..
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Old 03-28-2019, 03:00 PM   #5
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 18,268
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
Be patient, but don't hesitate when a good one pops up. Be vigilant and ready!
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Old 03-28-2019, 03:11 PM   #6
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 4,801
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE (A3RE)
Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
Rated Cap: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by diannetea View Post
Yay! That's what I wanted to hear

Now, time to be patient. Patient-er..
I watched and bid on buses for 18 months before I found the right one.
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Old 04-02-2019, 03:00 PM   #7
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Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 7
Give Rick a call at STA in Riverside, Ca. I just git my bus from him and he mentioned he had 20+ busses coming in this month that he will end up listing at auction. His number is 951.295.8811. I just got a 2010 with 80k miles on it for 5k it has a 8.1 with an Allison 2000
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Old 04-02-2019, 04:58 PM   #8
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 18,268
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
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Originally Posted by tschneringer View Post
Give Rick a call at STA in Riverside, Ca. I just git my bus from him and he mentioned he had 20+ busses coming in this month that he will end up listing at auction. His number is 951.295.8811. I just got a 2010 with 80k miles on it for 5k it has a 8.1 with an Allison 2000
Is the 8.1 a propane engine, or what?

I'd be real careful buying a bus that new!
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Old 04-02-2019, 06:15 PM   #9
Almost There
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Foot of the siskiyou mountains Oregon.
Posts: 99
Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas / international
Chassis: International
Engine: Dt 360/ spicer 5 speed
Rated Cap: 42
Check out Wolf Creek skoolies out in Southern Oregon.
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