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Old 01-29-2018, 10:36 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Somewhere Pretty
Posts: 16
Could I please have your opinion on this bus?

So, I've been reading through message boards on this site like crazy for the past month. I've fantasized about skoolie life for a real long time, and I'm hoping to take the plunge soon. Here's the thing: I'm not particularly handy and have no experience doing anything like this at all. Go ahead and laugh if you'd like.

I'm a seasonal national park ranger, and I'd really love to have a home on wheels. The biggest factor driving my decision is that I have two dogs who I love like crazy, but they're not allowed to live in park service housing. The family members back east who had looked after them while I rangered in the past can't do it anymore. I can either give my dogs away which would be heartbreaking, or I could buy an rv or bus and bring them along for the ride. RVs feel too cramped inside for me and two large hounds, so I've decided to move forward with the bus.

My start date is mid April, and since I don't think I can build one myself by then given that I have no experience, I'm looking for a completed conversion. My budget is kind of limited, since I mostly get paid in cool hats and beautiful sunsets.

I found this guy on tiny house listings. It looks lovely to me, and the folks who built it say it starts right up and that the tires are good and there's no rust.

Would anyone be able to offer up some solid advice? Should I do it? Will it get me around? It would have to be able to make the annual drive from Northwest Montana to Southern New Mexico! That's a lot of time in the Rockies.

Here's the link:

https://tinyhouselistings.com/listin...loveblue-bird/

Here's the specs:

ts an 87 Bluebird 40′ long
Non turbo CAT diesel with a new injection pump. Runs Great! 137,000 miles and 8,603 engine hours.
Has an RV AC/Heat pump unit in roof and a wood stove that really makes it cozy in the winter!
Purchased from a local school in 2015 and we converted it in 2016.
*Has a propane cooktop, mini fridge, full size kitchen sink, and a crafted gorgeous cotton wood table in the kitchen!
*Shower and self contained Porta potty in the bathroom. Bathroom is VERY roomy!
*A 30 gallon water tank and a 6 gallon electric water heater

Skoolie community? I'm at your hands. Please be nice and forgive my navet.
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Old 01-30-2018, 10:39 AM   #2
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Location: Willamina, Oregon
Posts: 6,409
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That's a nice looking bus the way they have it set up.

Are you pretty sure you can drive a 40'er through the backroads where you'll need to go?

One of the first things that caught my eye was the metal skins on the interior of the bus. Those are usually removed to allow a thorough insulation process to take place. If you're talking about staying in the bus during the winters in NW Montana, you're going to be disappointed when the weather gets cold. That metal interior will transfer outside temperatures into the bus making so much condensation that you'll think the roof is leaking.

I believe what you're looking at there is a southern bus. They don't need the heavy insulation to stay warm like we do up north. It's attractive inside, but I wouldn't recommend it for northern climates.

Since you appear to have some time remaining, I'd suggest hanging out on this site for a while and see if we can't find you something better. It's good to have lots of eyes looking.
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Old 01-30-2018, 10:55 AM   #3
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I agree with Robin. For the money they're asking for that bus, you should be able to find something that could better suit your needs.
I saw you said NW Montana...are you at Glacier NP??

John

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Old 01-30-2018, 11:13 AM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
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Thanks, you guys! I really appreciate the input!
Yes, I'm at Glacier National Park - my favorite one!
The owner said there was fiberglass insulation in the ceiling, but I didn't ask about the walls and floor. Is it possible that there's fiberglass under the metal? Would that be useless with the metal over it?
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Old 01-30-2018, 11:17 AM   #5
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8000 hours and $20K is high. Rocky-Mountain high.
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Old 01-30-2018, 11:57 AM   #6
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Glacier!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Asantana View Post
Thanks, you guys! I really appreciate the input!
Yes, I'm at Glacier National Park - my favorite one!
Our favorite too! This summer will be our 6th season there! Are on the East or West side?

My wife is a VUA on the East side, and I am the Assistant Location Manager at Glacier Park Lodge in East Glacier. Welcome to the Skoolie madness and I hope we can help you find something that will work for you!

John & Beeks
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Old 01-30-2018, 12:44 PM   #7
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Yes, the yellow insulation that was factory installed is garbage. That's why so many of us go trough all the labor of removing the interior and insulating properly.

Even if you're going to sped you time down south you'll still need insulation to keep cool during the summers.

Many of us use sprayfoam insulation which I'm sure you're familiar with by now. That is one of the most expensive options for insulation, but it does seem to be very efficient. As a less expensive alternative it's not that hard to cut rigid insulation panels to fit in your walls and ceiling. You'll want insulation in the floor too unless you can deal with cold feet.

Are you anywhere near that grashopper glacier I've heard about?
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Old 01-30-2018, 01:11 PM   #8
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Engine: Cat 3126
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asantana View Post
So, I've been reading through message boards on this site like crazy for the past month. I've fantasized about skoolie life for a real long time, and I'm hoping to take the plunge soon. Here's the thing: I'm not particularly handy and have no experience doing anything like this at all. Go ahead and laugh if you'd like.

I'm a seasonal national park ranger, and I'd really love to have a home on wheels. The biggest factor driving my decision is that I have two dogs who I love like crazy, but they're not allowed to live in park service housing. The family members back east who had looked after them while I rangered in the past can't do it anymore. I can either give my dogs away which would be heartbreaking, or I could buy an rv or bus and bring them along for the ride. RVs feel too cramped inside for me and two large hounds, so I've decided to move forward with the bus.

My start date is mid April, and since I don't think I can build one myself by then given that I have no experience, I'm looking for a completed conversion. My budget is kind of limited, since I mostly get paid in cool hats and beautiful sunsets.

I found this guy on tiny house listings. It looks lovely to me, and the folks who built it say it starts right up and that the tires are good and there's no rust.

Would anyone be able to offer up some solid advice? Should I do it? Will it get me around? It would have to be able to make the annual drive from Northwest Montana to Southern New Mexico! That's a lot of time in the Rockies.

Here's the link:

https://tinyhouselistings.com/listin...loveblue-bird/

Here's the specs:

ts an 87 Bluebird 40′ long
Non turbo CAT diesel with a new injection pump. Runs Great! 137,000 miles and 8,603 engine hours.
Has an RV AC/Heat pump unit in roof and a wood stove that really makes it cozy in the winter!
Purchased from a local school in 2015 and we converted it in 2016.
*Has a propane cooktop, mini fridge, full size kitchen sink, and a crafted gorgeous cotton wood table in the kitchen!
*Shower and self contained Porta potty in the bathroom. Bathroom is VERY roomy!
*A 30 gallon water tank and a 6 gallon electric water heater

Skoolie community? I'm at your hands. Please be nice and forgive my navet.
Too expensive. Anything that involves the name "tiny house" is gonna be way overpriced.
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Old 01-30-2018, 09:20 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnbloem1974 View Post
Our favorite too! This summer will be our 6th season there! Are on the East or West side?

My wife is a VUA on the East side, and I am the Assistant Location Manager at Glacier Park Lodge in East Glacier. Welcome to the Skoolie madness and I hope we can help you find something that will work for you!

John & Beeks
What?!?! I was a VUA on the east side, too! I started in Two Med three years ago, and have been in Many Glacier for the past two! I spent last year working permits. I'm Astrid - what's your wife's name?
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Old 01-30-2018, 11:08 PM   #10
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Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Montana/Texas
Posts: 502
Year: 1998
Coachwork: Crown by Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT 466e/MT 643!
Rated Cap: 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Asantana View Post
What?!?! I was a VUA on the east side, too! I started in Two Med three years ago, and have been in Many Glacier for the past two! I spent last year working permits. I'm Astrid - what's your wife's name?
Her name is Erica - was at St. Mary, and most recently 2Med this past summer... small world!

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