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Old 09-17-2017, 03:03 AM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 3
Starting the process...

Hi there all...

Beginning research stage of doing a conversion. Been reading up as much as possible and formulating a plan. Living in alaska our bus options aren't as vast, so I'm trying to make due with what we have up here.

I've found a deal one a bus and would like your input on this configuration of bus, and also maybe some of the types of engines/transmissions/ equipment to completely stay away from.

Bus in question: 2002 Thomas $3500
Mileage: 268k
Had a 84 Seating Capacity (all passenger seats have been removed)
*208" in Wheelbase
*GVWR 30,000 lb.
*295/75R22.5 Tires on Budd Wheels
* Engine - Caterpillar 3126B (Diesel) - 330 hp.
*Transmission - Allison AD 2000 - Automatic
*Heaters - Wasbasto Bus-Scholastic-Heater - Engineered specifically for school buses - Model DBW 2010 Heater warms the engine, the driver and the students even if the engine is not running.




Appreciate any info in advance.. thank you.
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Old 09-17-2017, 04:10 AM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Midwest
Posts: 2,573
Year: 2003
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: 5.9L Cummins
Rated Cap: '00
Welcome !

What are your plans? That will help decide on the 'right bus'. How many ppl, how tall, how long of journeys...

You won't get any love for the Cat engine on this board.

I always ask about rust and tires.

Happy Hunting !!!
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Old 09-17-2017, 05:21 AM   #3
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It would just be my wife and I and our couple pets. We are wanting to move down to the lower 48 and travel the states on my time off which is 2 week on/off schedule.

I'm thinking we'd be better off in a larger bus, with our dogs and cat. I'd like a taller roof model, but that will likely be hard to find up here, same with under body storage and tall gears.

Im 5'11" so I'm not sure how bad the standard roof would be.

Rust up here is common place, so I'll just have to do due diligence to make sure it's not too bad.

What're the draw backs to the cat engines??

Any input about the ad2000 Allison??
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Old 09-17-2017, 05:22 AM   #4
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It would just be my wife and I and our couple pets. We are wanting to move down to the lower 48 and travel the states on my time off which is 2 week on/off schedule.

I'm thinking we'd be better off in a larger bus, with our dogs and cat. I'd like a taller roof model, but that will likely be hard to find up here, same with under body storage and tall gears.

Im 5'11" so I'm not sure how bad the standard roof would be.

Rust up here is common place, so I'll just have to do due diligence to make sure it's not too bad.

What're the draw backs to the cat engines??

Any input about the ad2000 Allison??
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:16 AM   #5
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Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Anaconda,MT
Posts: 259
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466 Turbo
Rated Cap: 90
The cat engines are not so good very costly to find parts for. and with that high of a mileage I would guess the engine is starting to get tired. I my self would not buy a bus with that many miles on it.
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:26 AM   #6
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 18,528
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
I'm 5'10 and the standard roof height isn't enough for me to move comfortably. I raised my roof. But you can get a bus with high headroom, just look for the big side windows.
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Old 09-18-2017, 10:00 PM   #7
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Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: NY
Posts: 736
Year: 2002
Coachwork: International
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 65C-43A
Didn't someone mention that if the windows are higher than the drivers window, the ceiling would be higher? I could be wrong.

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