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Old 10-13-2019, 08:38 PM   #1
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How much should a short bus cost?

I live in The mid west and Iv been looking hot and heavy for one that runs and drives with no major fluid leaks or rust. I keep seeing them for around $3000. Iím looking for a short bus that has a Chevy 5.7 in it so early to late 90s is fine.

Iím going to go look at a bus this week thatís a 92 Chevy van chassis with under 100k on it thatís already got a wood floor in it and the seats out. Their asking $3000. Any advice would be helpful.

My goal is to daily drive it and camperize it for outings. I donít want a diesel since I donít drive far normally and a gas engine is easier to wrench on.

Iím sorry for the sentence structure here Iím just excited to find a bus.
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:01 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Bigbobsaget View Post
I live in The mid west and Iv been looking hot and heavy for one that runs and drives with no major fluid leaks or rust. I keep seeing them for around $3000. Iím looking for a short bus that has a Chevy 5.7 in it so early to late 90s is fine.

Iím going to go look at a bus this week thatís a 92 Chevy van chassis with under 100k on it thatís already got a wood floor in it and the seats out. Their asking $3000. Any advice would be helpful.

My goal is to daily drive it and camperize it for outings. I donít want a diesel since I donít drive far normally and a gas engine is easier to wrench on.

Iím sorry for the sentence structure here Iím just excited to find a bus.
from my observations of asking or selling prices, it's often that the shorter the bus is, the more it costs - your's doesn't sound TOO far out of line if it's in good condition - but I doubt a cutaway can be considered to be easy to wrench on - I have an older chevy cutaway motorhome - the electric fan quit and the motor over heated and seized - the only quote I got from a legitimate mechanic was $3000 for the R&R and I supplied the new motor and anything else that was needed - most mechanics don't want anything to do with working on a cutaway, no matter the brand
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Old 10-13-2019, 09:10 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Sleddgracer View Post
from my observations of asking or selling prices, it's often that the shorter the bus is, the more it costs - your's doesn't sound TOO far out of line if it's in good condition - but I doubt a cutaway can be considered to be easy to wrench on - I have an older chevy cutaway motorhome - the electric fan quit and the motor over heated and seized - the only quote I got from a legitimate mechanic was $3000 for the R&R and I supplied the new motor and anything else that was needed - most mechanics don't want anything to do with working on a cutaway, no matter the brand
I had an E450 cutaway 5 window and found it to be a really pain to do much of anything to the engine. Since selling that one I am on the lookout for a 5 window CE.
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Old 10-13-2019, 10:10 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by PNW_Steve View Post
I had an E450 cutaway 5 window and found it to be a really pain to do much of anything to the engine. Since selling that one I am on the lookout for a 5 window CE.
on my 1980 cube van, a cutaway chevy, I had to have a special wrench to change one of the spark plugs
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Old 10-17-2019, 05:52 PM   #5
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on my 1980 cube van, a cutaway chevy, I had to have a special wrench to change one of the spark plugs
Yeah, I am done with anything van. I offered to look at a Ford Aerostar van that was running rough.

Troubleshooting took about 5 minutes. It would have been quicker but I had some trouble getting the doghouse open.

I found a vacuum line that had split and was leaking and causing a lean condition.

So I have identified the problem. All I needed to do was to pull the line off of the intake manifold and cut 3/4 of an inch off of the end of the line and push it back on the nipple.

It took me almost three hours to effect the repair.
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Old 10-17-2019, 06:08 PM   #6
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Engine: 350 Chevy
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Back on topic, $3K for the van/bus you're looking at isn't bad as long as it's structurally sound.
Repairs on these types of vehicles take longer due to the lack of space around the engine, but just about any mechanic that knows what he's doing can work on them.

Besides, it's an ultra reliable small block Chevy. It shouldn't need lots of maintenance now, as long as its been maintained over it's lifetime at the school district.
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Old 10-17-2019, 07:15 PM   #7
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Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: south east BC, close to the Canadian/US border
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Year: 1975
Coachwork: Chevy
Chassis: 8 window
Engine: 454 LS7
Rated Cap: 24,500
Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW_Steve View Post
Yeah, I am done with anything van. I offered to look at a Ford Aerostar van that was running rough.

Troubleshooting took about 5 minutes. It would have been quicker but I had some trouble getting the doghouse open.

I found a vacuum line that had split and was leaking and causing a lean condition.

So I have identified the problem. All I needed to do was to pull the line off of the intake manifold and cut 3/4 of an inch off of the end of the line and push it back on the nipple.

It took me almost three hours to effect the repair.


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