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Old 01-28-2011, 07:37 PM   #1
somewhereinusa
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Somewhereinusa

I couldn't have found a better match to my criteria if I had ordered it.

My "must have list"
40 ft pusher
high roof
air brakes

My "would be nice to have list"
low miles
highway gears/enough horsepower to run them
no rust
air suspension

I have been watching all of the lists that I could find, and was actually going to stop in Tennessee next week to look at some buses that came close.
I had kind of ruled out Bluebird because I didn't know they offered a high roof.
I stopped in Moriarty, NM to get fuel and I always get back on the interstate by going back the way I came, but today I went the other way through town.
Spotted some buses at the local Chevy dealer and one was a large pusher. I turned around and went back to inquire(I NEVER turnaround(ask my wife)) When I asked
the price, I thought at first I had heard wrong. To make a long story shorter, this is what I bought, for a little less money than asking.





91 Bluebird AAER 40 foot 171,150 miles
250HP Cat
77 inch interior headroom
brand new Bostrom air ride seat
factory air
air brakes
pass through luggage compartments
120 gal fuel capacity
I'm a photographer and the roof rack will really come in handy.

NO rust (was in service about as far South East in New Mexico as you can get)

It was an activity bus, so it was never used for student pickup. It passed NM DOT inspection a year ago and has hardly been used since then because they got a new bus.

Now I just have to get it home, hopefully my son and I can get it done in a weekend by driving it, it not I'll try to get a load this direction and haul it home.

Now I have a couple of questions.

The factory air is using 2 automotive type compressors, I assume one for each side. They are powered by the bus engine. Any ideas how much horse power they require? I would like to
run them from a 3 cyl Kubota diesel that used to run a 7000 watt generator.

The build sheet says
"Insulated complete including bows, and insulated drivers area" Does this actually mean anything, other than they put some insulation behind stuff when they built it?

I'm excited about the whole project, although I probably won't get to do too much but plan until I retire in Oct.
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Old 01-28-2011, 10:52 PM   #2
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Sweet bus. Welcome to skoolie.net
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Old 01-30-2011, 04:07 PM   #3
somewhereinusa
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Re: Somewhereinusa

timmylc, it took me a while to figure out why you thought it would be UNSAFE if the aux engine quit. I was talking about air conditioning compressors, not air compressor. I guess I didn't state that right.

Dick
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Old 01-30-2011, 04:19 PM   #4
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Welcome, very nice ride
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Old 01-30-2011, 08:13 PM   #5
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Re: Somewhereinusa

I did find out from the BB website that the new models use wool batting for insulation and they tout that it's much better. I'll have to see when I can lay eyes on it again. I envy you people who can actually go home to your projects every night. I got to see it for about 2 hours, and had to leave. There it sits 1345.2 miles from the house. I was going to try to drive it home, but it looks like the plan now is to go to North Carolina, then back to Kansas City and Phoenix, then back to Moriarty and haul it home. Things are always changing, but I was looking forward to driving it home.


The aux diesel I have is 16.2 hp. I'm hoping it will be enough to run the two air conditioner compressors and maybe a 12v alternator just to keep things all charged up. One of the good (bad) things about this job is I have a lot of time to do engineering and planning in my head. I can come up with all kind of strange ideas.
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Old 01-31-2011, 05:46 PM   #6
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Quote:
"pfft i wish i had a 16.2hp diesel layin around"
You too could have one of these if your 2 year old generator let all of the smoke out and it only cost $1000 more for a new one than to put the smoke back in the old one.

The compressors aren't very big, look like maybe sankyo's, about car size. I'll report back when I have more info. One down side to using aux motor for air is that there probably won't be a campground in the country would let me use it. I really don't use air much in my present camper, I don't think I have turned it on more than 10 times in 5 years. I really don't go "camping", although I hope to do more after retirement. I'm usually parked at a farm somewhere at an event taking pictures.

I'm afraid I'm not very green, and wouldn't be able to run off the grid for more than 2 hours without some kind of electricity. While at an event there are at least 3 computers and monitors running, plus a very large dyesub printer,and a laser printer plus if it's hot out cooling fans for us and electrical gear. I have a home built USP that will run the computers for about an hour, but those printers need too much power.
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Old 01-31-2011, 07:01 PM   #7
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Here is probably what will be the floorplan for your comments. Measurements are from what I THOUGHT they would be before I actually had a bus, they should be close.


Left side


Right side


Looking toward rear. The printers will be on heavy duty slides and are shown partway out. The yellow table to the left actually has three positions.
1. as it's shown as a sit down table.
2. as the same height as cabinets to either end as a stand up work area for most of the non computer work I do, chairs will stow underneath.
3. in a slot against the wall. turn chairs around for casual seating.


Looking into bedroom. The upper part is really working storage, lower is fake as is most of the end tables. The engine cover is in there.


Kitchen


Heat will be infloor radiant hot water using an Espar diesel boiler.Four zones, with a fifth loop going through water storage and piping areas.
Domestic hot water comes from a heat exchanger from the boiler(unlimited hot water)
I have most of the parts now and (I think) most of the details worked out.

Water tanks approx sizes. Fresh 120gl, black 60gl, gray 80gl.
Reefer is 110v from dedicated inverter.
Stove and microwave 110v shore or gen. There will be NO propane.
If mumsywumsy wants to use her hair dryer, she can just wait until I start the generator or learn to start it herself

There will be three separate battery banks.
1. engine start.
2.household(the biggest bank) Present camper has 3 yellow top optimas, not sure if I will just use more or something else. The truck has two that I can add when it dies of old age.
3. computer USP with dedicated charger and inverter(that's what I'm using now and it works very well using 2 yellow top optimas)

The dinette can be made into a bed if absolutely necessary, but we don't really have any "sleepover"friends. When my son comes along he brings his own bus. (92 MCI ex Grayhound)
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Old 01-31-2011, 08:52 PM   #8
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Man, that is an awesome bus! If I were going full size, I would be looking for that exact bus! It even has a roof rack! Cool.
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Old 01-31-2011, 09:15 PM   #9
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Boy, if you build your plans you'll find out about a whole lot of work and money.
I have a '84 BB AA, and the insulation actually seems pretty good.
Does it have the dreaded Cat 3208ta. :lol:
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Old 01-31-2011, 09:29 PM   #10
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Re: Somewhereinusa

Quote:
Originally Posted by bus-bro
Boy, if you build your plans you'll find out about a whole lot of work and money.
I have a '84 BB AA, and the insulation actually seems pretty good.
Does it have the dreaded Cat 3208ta. :lol:
I hope that once retired the not enough time problem will go away, I've found that I can usually make or come up with things much cheaper than buying them. I live near the camper/motorhome capitol of the world and there are some really good rv surplus places nearby. I also have the good fortune of having a son who is a motor home engineer. As for the work, I'm convinced that if I quit working I won't last long.

No, I've got the dreaded 3116ta
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