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mcnicol820 02-15-2015 10:40 PM

Any LA bus dwellers out there? Needing advice...
Hello all. My name is Carrie and I live in Long Beach, California. with my husband Bryce, our daughter Jalynn and Kasha our pooch. We are very interested in having a more minimal lifestyle for many reasons.
We love the idea of bus conversion and are ready to jump right in except my husband works in LA and Burbank area at some of the studios and there are few options on where you can put a bus/rv. I was wondering if there is anyone on here who lives this lifestyle in the general LA area and how they go about it. Any advice would be greatly appreciated

SchannepFamily 02-16-2015 01:40 PM

I'm interested in following this thread! My husband and our three small kids just bought a bus and are on the same track. We live in Fullerton, so not too far from you. I'd love to hear your ideas for your conversion with kids. :-)


mcnicol820 02-16-2015 02:34 PM


Originally Posted by SchannepFamily (Post 100281)
I'm interested in following this thread! My husband and our three small kids just bought a bus and are on the same track. We live in Fullerton, so not too far from you. I'd love to hear your ideas for your conversion with kids. :-)


Hello Robin! I am so glad to hear we aren't the only ones in the area with this interest :-) You are a lot further along in the process than we are by having bought the bus. I have been using google sketchup to layout my floor plan for a basic 40' bus. I have a few ideas on making the most of the space but I am big on open spaces and I want to avoid that hallway look through the bus. We are wanting to lift the roof to just below max height and that will give us the ability to do a small loft area for our daughters bed. She is 8 years old and loves the idea. I haven't got to all the power, water and fuel ideas yet. Are you guys planning on staying in the area or will you be full time travelers?


SchannepFamily 02-16-2015 04:59 PM

I totally forgot about Google sketch ups! Thanks for the reminder!! I completely agree about wanting to protect a more open layout and say away from that hall way look. I'm not sure how much farther along we are though, we have the bus, but we still need to go out to Tennesse to pick it up. Ours is a 34 foot 1995 Bluebird. We were looking at a 40 footer and debated about it. I'd like the extra space, but the smaller one was just built better and I'm a little intimidated driving a 40 footer.

How are you going to raise the roof? What's the process like for that? I'm really interested in that. Also, where do you plan to park yours while you're working on it? That's one reason why we aren't in a hurry to go get ours because we are still working on finding a parking spot for it.

We're going to be taking off for a 6 month to a year tour of the U.S. in about a year. How about you guys?


schoolmarm 02-16-2015 11:28 PM

Where in Tennessee is your bus located? I live in Obion,TN, about 100 miles north of Memphis.

SchannepFamily 02-16-2015 11:36 PM

Really?! I don't know anything about the geography of TN, but it's in Clarksville. Is that close to you at all? What is your skoolie like?

EastCoastCB 02-17-2015 07:00 AM

I got my bus twenty miles north of Clarksville in southern Kentucky. Todd County. Stayed the night in Clarksville. It got down into the teens and snowed heavily.
Great area and the bus I got is virtually rust free except the underside of the roof from the leaky hatches.
There isn't much in Clarksville, but they have a Chipotle so I was happy. The roads were complete shite and had narrow lanes that looked like they were paved during the New Deal.
We stayed at the Baymont Inn the night before we picked up the bus. Good rates and nice staff.
Be glad you won't be going south on I24. Between Nashville and Chattanooga there are some nasty grades to contend with.
Did yall get the TC that was at auction? Pics?

SchannepFamily 02-20-2015 05:11 PM

Carrie, I'm not sure if you have your sights set on a bus just yet, but there is a bus that is for sale in Anaheim right now. My husband and I went to look at it and almost bought it, but there was another family interested at the time and we moved forward with our bus in TN instead. Well the other family backed out and it's back up for sale. It's kinda ugly, but if you can look past the poor paint job and the sloppy interior it has good bones. It's a 40' Ward International. It's a 1992 I believe and it's a diesel puller. Here's the link for it:1992 40ft Ward/International School Bus Conversion

We're set to pick out beauty up the end of March!!! We're so excited!!!! Thanks for the tip on a motel. I think my husband and father in law are going to go out and get it. They have a 28 hour drive home ahead of them. Yikes!!!

mcnicol820 02-21-2015 12:59 PM

Robin, :-) you're right, that is one ugly bus! And thank you for the info. We are actually going to wait a few more months before we buy one. We are going to try and find a good diesel pusher in Florida where we will be doing the overhaul. They have a ton of school bus auctions and stuff there. I have seen some people get really nice ones from auction for like $2500. Good luck on the pick up!

theallnightdiner 02-21-2015 05:06 PM

ive lived in my 37ft thomas skoolie for 8 months now all over LA. from hollywood, venice, to downtown which is where i currently stay. you can find out more.about my skoolie at i am a semi truck and bus mechanic too. been living on busses for sveral years now. my bus was also featured in the LA times if you search for the all night diner or my name, nicholas siemion.

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