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Old 11-03-2015, 09:02 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Timelord View Post
My 84 passenger was a 40' bus.
the question was about inside space. bumper to bumper my bus is also 40'.
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Old 11-12-2015, 08:57 PM   #42
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Please see post #2 if you are new to the forum.
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Old 11-17-2015, 10:32 PM   #43
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Year: 1996
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Engine: Ford 7.3 Powerstroke
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If it would be possible to make a list like this into click-bait that every visitor to the site couldn't help but click on, it would be huge.
I will triumph with my bus, but boy do I wish I'd known more while shopping.

Many people have voiced concerns with accessibility in van-base busses when drivetrain maintenance is required. Personally, I've had no problems with this yet, but I am worried about it. I'm not the kind of guy who likes to let shops service my vehicles, and in this case I think I may have to, we'll see.

I will say that the aforementioned gearing limits me to about 55mph. I don't find this particularly distressing, but I know some might. I've heard that changing the gearing in the rear axle will help, but I don't have plans to do so.

It also seems prudent to mention that the rust in my bus, while somewhat formidable, is not distressing. I'll have to rebuild the floor in the next few years, but it should be relatively easy, given that the rusty bits are all aftermarket conversion parts. The important spots to check for rust in van base busses are: the chassis, and the cab (aka all the Ford parts, in my case). The rest (the aftermarket part) of the bus is easy to cut up and/or replace, as long as you're not a wimp. I'll stress that my bus is a VAN-BASE Ford, I have no authority on full size busses, especially in this regard.

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Old 04-01-2016, 08:11 PM   #44
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Thanks for this

Having read the thread, I have now switched more of my efforts in the next few months towards: 1) getting neighbours to sign an easement letting me get bus in and out if my yard through theirs 2) going to town council meetings about bylaws and 3) prepping the yard with a portable garage set up BEFORE I get over eager about all the busses I see on kijiji. I also found a mechanic who did a conversion himself and is willing to work with me, and signed up to audit a welding class at the local high school. That said, if an 8.3 Cummings automatic comes in kijiji I will leap off that cliff! As a noob I appreciate all of your time.
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Old 11-10-2016, 10:25 PM   #45
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Look, I'm trying, really I am. I've spent easy a hundred hours reading this site. But the info is all over the place, and the search function sucks raw eggs, so I ask:

Is there a size difference between buses with 72, 74, 78, and 84 seats? And by size, I mean 'enclosed area available for building stuff into'.

Do buses come longer than 40 feet? I've only gone to look at two of them so far and neither were even 40' long. I've never heard anyone mention that they just bought a 44' foot bus in great shape. Maybe there's a law or regulation, like there is evidently about '15 years and you're outta here'.

This is mainly why I am limiting my search to flat nose rear engine buses. They look to have the most cubic foot bang for the buck. And I want the engine to make noise where someone is trying to take a nap, not where I'm trying to drive the bus and read a GPS at the same time.

-Dan

If this should have been in a different thread, I'm sure you'll tell me.
I'm with this guy. I'm curious as to what bus or buses are going to have the most interior space lengthwise. I would prefer a taller one but that's not absolutely necessary. That way I can focus my search on finding the longest bus with the most interior room available and I haven't figured out how to determine that yet.

I appreciate y'alls help.
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Old 09-16-2017, 01:23 PM   #46
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Looks like we are off to a great start with solid advice. To all the noobs looking for a bus, pay attention and learn.

PLEASE DO NOT CLUTTER THIS THREAD WITH QUESTIONS.




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Old 11-07-2017, 05:35 AM   #47
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Glad this is a STICKY
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Old 01-23-2018, 08:38 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by crazycal View Post
You want to buy a bus? So did we. Before you buy something and come here complaining that it only goes 49mph and you want to go 80, figure it out beforehand. Without singling anyone out, it is getting annoying reading posts every week with someone whining about something they thought would be different.

Rules in bus buying.

1. Understand that you are buying a school bus, not a $400,000 MCI motor coach. Price before conversion.

2. Many of the buses being auctioned off are at the end of their useful life. Choose carefully or you will pay dearly.

3. Know your budget and what it costs to pick up a bus from 2000 miles away. If you find a bus 20 miles away and it is $500 more than a bus 1500 miles away and 149 miles from the closest airport, it is a steal. Don't be a pennywise, pound foolish, tightwad cheapskate and complain about your purchase after the fact. If you are a tightwad, embrace it but don't come here and cry about it.

4. Tires are very expensive. Understand that a bus with good rubber costing $500 more than the same bus with bad rubber is a steal.

5. Rust. IT NEVER SLEEPS!!! Avoid like the plague. Unless you are buying to part it out, I don't see the benefit of buy a bus with rust. I am talking about body cancer not some mild surface rust.

6. Speed. FORGETABOUTIT!!! See Rule 1. There are exceptions to this rule. Cubes, transmission and ratio. If you want a GO FAST BUS, buy a bus with a Cummins 8.3 engine, a MT643 or MD3060 transmission and a 4.10 rearend. End of discussion. I know that some will mention a DT466 engine but the highest HP I have ever seen is a 210hp and the 8.3 engines I have seen are 250. It is best to buy a bus with what you need or want than trying to change it afterwards.

7. Front or rear engine. Your preference. Are you going to haul bikes, canoes, motorcycles, etc? You might want a front engine bus but the are noisier and hotter for the driver. Rear engine is much more quite.

I have more rules but need to run right now. Feel free to add more if you want.
It is school bus 1st...skoolie 2nd...the more you do the cheaper it'll be because labor is the most expensive part of the solution...but be like the gambler, know when to bite bullet...

Like the guy who went to the dealer for a tranny swap...

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Old 01-23-2018, 08:40 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
I agree with all that except the 8.3 vs 466 thing. There are many 466 out there with more than 210hp.
But I like this thread, you did a pretty good job putting that list together. It does get redundant sometimes with new threads that all ask the same questions.


I'll add that if you plan of driving in the mountains, you may want a retarder. Especially out west.

And ALWAYS figure out who will insure a bus for you before buying one. ALWAYS have a very definite place to store or park a bus.
I started a thread about a insurance company I stumbled across...sounds interesting

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Old 01-23-2018, 08:43 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by M1031A1 View Post
Also check to see if your state has a one-way-trip temporary tag like Texas does. For $5 in Texas you're legal to get home.

Have the VIN ready for the insurance company to pre-plan insurance. My agent in Katy, TX is very accustomed to us having off-the-wall vehicles so he's more willing than most to help us out.

Once you get your bus, SERVICE IT!!!!! BEFORE YOU GO HOME SERVICE IT!!!!!! When was the last time the oil was changed? Can YOU verify this? If not, the change the oil, check the transmission fluid, coolant, et.al. Also check the D.O.T. dates on the tires. ANYTHING over nine years old is considered a traffic hazard by most trucking companies. If you can't change the tires plan on going slower than you anticipated to get home safely. Higher speeds = higher tire temperatures = BLOW OUT. I kept my bus below 50 mph to save the engine, but the tires were borderline and another reason to go slow coming home.

M1031
Hey, Katy! I work in channelview/live dt...when I get closer to my bus I might PM you?

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