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Old 11-15-2008, 05:28 PM   #1
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Re: First Bus

i agree with smitty make sure you can register the bus-i had a hell of a time with mine i had a 12 year old transfer paper reggyed to the previous owner from the person i bought the bus for im not saying how i resolved this problem but neverless its an issue welcome to the madness!

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Old 11-23-2008, 09:22 PM   #2
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Re: First Bus


You say the door does not work right. Is it air operated? If so, open the little "cupboard" above the door and look for a knob that regulates the air flow. A small adjustment there can do wonders.

Power steering -- maybe all it needs is fluid? But find out what fluid it is supposed to have.

If this bus is truly registered as an RV in California, then it has a passenger car license plate, so it is unlikely that any patrolman would have a problem with its status.
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Old 12-05-2008, 08:52 AM   #3
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Re: First Bus

Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesccostello
I Found a bus at a suitable enough price. It is a 1986 bluebird with some conversion work already started on it ... Anyways, it's a 1986 BlueBird with a Detroit Diesel rebuilt engine that sat for a while, air brakes, auto trans, it looks like there is minimal rust underneath (couldn't see it too well). ...
If it has air brakes, it may also have an air suspension (air bags). If you let those sit too long they can rot, so check those out. If they are there and they did rot, they may pop on the way home, in which case you'd have a sudden drop of air pressure. If this happens, you can pull the bus over and detach the leveling mechanism in the back (between the two bags), this will cut any air loss in the back and you should still be able to get the bus home, albeit bumpy.

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Old 12-06-2008, 01:49 AM   #4
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Re: First Bus

OUCH!!!!
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Old 12-06-2008, 03:23 AM   #5
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Re: First Bus

HOW LONG WAS IT IN INPOUND AND WHAT WAS THE DAY RATES.

WHAT THE SO CALLED COPS JUST GO AND LOOK FOR SUFF TO SCREW WITH SKOOLIES.

WHY SELL YOU ALREADY HAVE ALL STUFF WORKED OUT.

ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS BUILD THE SKOOLIE AND YOU ALREADY HAVE THE GENI.
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Old 12-06-2008, 11:59 AM   #6
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Re: First Bus

what a shitty way to buy a bus you got scammed by the storage dude and he should be hung for that one and the price fraud seen this crap lots of time id go to him and tell him i want 1000 back or give him the stain-the problem lies with the seller there liens and titles are very important and the seller dude has to be up front with it all he should reimburse you for your trouble,if he is a fair business man wow!
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Old 12-06-2008, 12:07 PM   #7
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Re: First Bus


Hi James.

Please do not take offense, but you have had a... valuable learning experience. Reading it, I seriously thought it might be a fictional humor story. Again, PLEASE do not take offense -- I'm laughing WITH you, not at you. Because... laughing is the only proper thing to do now. We're all human, and few of us are experienced in the used-vehicle-trade. It was "your turn in the barrel". Now you put it behind you -- and next time you buy a vehicle, you'll know to check all these things. (To summarize, always compare the VIN on the vehicle, and the license plate; with both those numbers on every document, at each stage of the operation.)

James, your total outlay is not a bad price for the bus you now finally own. It's a full 40-footer, which is a rare and precious commodity -- most are one or two seat-rows shorter. It is painted -- a huge amount of work saved. It's a snazzy-looking model with the dual headlights. (It could be the top-of-the-line All American instead of the usual TC2000.) If the generator works OK, that could be worth quite a bit -- perhaps not for resale, but for you when you start camping in your bus. It's already registered as an RV -- another hurdle behind you. Once you get over the frustration, you are actually doing quite well!

(And don't worry about why the Park Ranger sounded the alarm. The sticker on the plate was expired, right? Well, then he SHOULD run a check. He actually did you a favor, or the mix-up might have been perpetuated and exploded in your lap later. All is well now.)

Be sure to file for that refund you have coming from the DMV. And perhaps, as Timbuk suggests, perhaps you can get even more money back. Be calm and polite and explain the facts and the legalities. Then get started working on that very nice bus that you... bought for a reason, didn't you?

I'd be interested in hearing what engine model that DD is. And also the generator, in case I can tell you something about it.

Bonus item: Whose license plates were on it, and how did they get there????? I'm guessing the school district mixed them up in 1986.
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Old 12-06-2008, 01:32 PM   #8
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Re: First Bus


By the way, you mentioned mismatched rear tires. But some different tire sizes are compatible with eachother. And unless you cram the bus full of high school senior football players, the rear tires are quite lightly loaded. Give us the numbers and some descriptions and we'll try to figure out what you really have.
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Old 12-06-2008, 04:10 PM   #9
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Re: First Bus

I thought I had a tough "getting the bus registered in my name" story but you beat me out dude. I agree with Mr. Naess, you have a good bus now. Hang in there you are to the fun and creative part now. Best of luck.
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Old 12-06-2008, 04:48 PM   #10
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Re: First Bus

Wow, did you ever get the muddy end of the stick! To me, it sounds like you need to get a cheaper place to store your bus while you work on it. Does your school have any place maybe? Sure would be a waste of what looks to be a pretty nice conversion to dump it. I bet that if you decide to sell it, you'll probably get what you put into it so far... The "Fates" seem to be conspiring against you though... Wish you the best of luck whichever route you choose...
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:37 PM   #11
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Re: First Bus

Wow! I don't know what to say other that My thoughts are with you and don't giveup. Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.
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Old 12-06-2008, 10:27 PM   #12
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Re: First Bus

If you are still having problems with the air opening door and it turns out to be in the valve above the door get some pictures and post. I have converted my door to a single swing door (pictures posted in Conversion Projects) and no longer need my valve assembly. Like others I will let you have it for shipping cost if it looks like it will help you. Good Luck with the bus. It is a lot of work but a lot of fun too.
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Old 12-07-2008, 02:07 AM   #13
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Re: First Bus

Nice pics! I like the white and blue color scheme. I might adopt it for my bus when I paint!


-Ray
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:45 AM   #14
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Re: First Bus

The panel labeled "Trans/Air" looks like controls for an air conditioning system. Check out http://www.transairmfg.com/index.cfm . Have you tried playing with it while the engine is running? I'm guessing it's probably disconnected or otherwise non-functional, though.
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:38 AM   #15
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Re: First Bus

Hi James,

Welcome to the maddness...er...forum !!

WOW...what a pile of $#*! yo had to wade through! Like Elliot said you are through it now, and that in and of itself was half the battle! Besides, what you have invested in your bus thus far, is probably no more than what most of us initially invested in our own...so keep it and have fun with it!!!

As far as the foot control left of the steering column, it is probably your "high beam" dimmer switch for your headlights. My guess for the two radiator screens on the sides of the bus would be that they house the central air conditioning unit for the bus, and the switches on the control panel you were questioning are probably the controls for the A/C. As far as your "tractor" tire goes, it kinda looks like it came off of a 1950's or 60's style Army Jeep - like the ones used in MASH !!! I would definetely swap those out. Check with your local truck tire shop or even a highway truck stop that has a tire shop; they will often have good used tires that can be had for much less than buying new.

Good luck with the bus, and don't forget to have fun with it!!!

Josh
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:50 AM   #16
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Re: First Bus

You pretty much got the tire right, it is not a tractor tire, but it looks like a military issue truck tire. It's probably just fine, but I'd replace it, maybe find a new rim too and keep that tire for an emergency spare.

Aside from a frustrating experience and spending more money than you planned, you still have a great looking bus for a very good price. You could probably turn it around like it is and still make a profit on it. I'd stick with the plan and move forward as long as finances allow.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:00 PM   #17
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Re: First Bus


First of all, I would park it away from those $200.000 motor homes. That will make your bus look MUCH better!

Sure seems like you need tires. And that military tire may not be rated for highway speed, which might make it illegal to have on there -- not sure. Also, I'm not sure about your wheels -- I cannot see for certain, but they may be split rims. Your data plate says the bus came with tubeless rims, but they look suspicious "from here" -- that poor slob might have "traded down" for split ones and a bottle of Ripple. Take a close look at all six -- I've seen buses with split rims on the rear and tubeless ones on the front. If you find any split rims, I recommend you replace them with tubeless ones. To identify a tubeless wheel: The valve stem has a nut at its base.
(I wouldn't bother to carry a spare, since it is not likely that you would be able to change it anyway. That 's what Les Schwaab is for.)

You have some flexibility with tire sizes. These days, the "high profile" tires like 11.00 are no longer much in use. Most 18-wheelers use "low profile" tires with metric width like 275. So when you go looking for used tires, you will most likely wind up with something like 275R/80x22.5, which is a common size on 18-wheelers. And guess what... 295/75Rx22.5 is the same height, and those two sizes are interchangable for our purposes.

The engine serial number is on the other data plate. Again, the engine could have been replaced, but it's a start.

For the power steering tank, I would look near the left headlights. Some vehicles use automatic transmission fluid, but I would buy "real" power steering fluid unless told otherwise. A telephone call to a Blue Bird dealer might settle it.

Give it a good scrubbing. You'll be amazed how much better it will appear as soon as you get rid of the greasy stain on the edge of the entry door.

Very likely the windows are "water stained", which is also a serious "attitude depresser". You can get a water stain remover. It's a fine abrasive powder that you mix with water and it requires a lot of rubbing, but it works. Be sure to follow the directions -- use a soft rag; NOT a scrubbing pad or you'll scratch the heck out of the glass.

If the rear end ratio really has been changed, that's an other big plus for your bus.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:37 PM   #18
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Re: First Bus

No kidding Elliot!!! Blue Birds are great looking coaches, but when you park it next to a brand new Monaco, it can be a little depressing to see how much work you really have yet to do!!!
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Old 12-07-2008, 05:44 PM   #19
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Re: First Bus

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elliot Naess

First of all, I would park it away from those $200.000 motor homes. That will make your bus look MUCH better!

Sure seems like you need tires. And that military tire may not be rated for highway speed, which might make it illegal to have on there -- not sure. Also, I'm not sure about your wheels -- I cannot see for certain, but they may be split rims. Your data plate says the bus came with tubeless rims, but they look suspicious "from here" -- that poor slob might have "traded down" for split ones and a bottle of Ripple. Take a close look at all six -- I've seen buses with split rims on the rear and tubeless ones on the front. If you find any split rims, I recommend you replace them with tubeless ones. To identify a tubeless wheel: The valve stem has a nut at its base.
(I wouldn't bother to carry a spare, since it is not likely that you would be able to change it anyway. That 's what Les Schwaab is for.)

You have some flexibility with tire sizes. These days, the "high profile" tires like 11.00 are no longer much in use. Most 18-wheelers use "low profile" tires with metric width like 275. So when you go looking for used tires, you will most likely wind up with something like 275R/80x22.5, which is a common size on 18-wheelers. And guess what... 295/75Rx22.5 is the same height, and those two sizes are interchangable for our purposes.

The engine serial number is on the other data plate. Again, the engine could have been replaced, but it's a start.

For the power steering tank, I would look near the left headlights. Some vehicles use automatic transmission fluid, but I would buy "real" power steering fluid unless told otherwise. A telephone call to a Blue Bird dealer might settle it.

Give it a good scrubbing. You'll be amazed how much better it will appear as soon as you get rid of the greasy stain on the edge of the entry door.

Very likely the windows are "water stained", which is also a serious "attitude depresser". You can get a water stain remover. It's a fine abrasive powder that you mix with water and it requires a lot of rubbing, but it works. Be sure to follow the directions -- use a soft rag; NOT a scrubbing pad or you'll scratch the heck out of the glass.

If the rear end ratio really has been changed, that's an other big plus for your bus.

MOST OF THE SKOOLIE HAVE AIR SO USING AIR TOOLS IS NO PROBLEM
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Old 12-07-2008, 09:44 PM   #20
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Re: First Bus

Quote:
Lastly, I found a floppy disk with a word document on it. It appears that it was a suicide note. There was also another document written in Romanian.
am i the only one who wants to read the suicide note? also, there are free online websites you can use to translate....wonder what the words in romanian say?
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