Time to start a build thread for our big bus. Last weekend, a friend and I drove up to Burlington, IA to pick up the bus we had put a deposit on a month before.
I found the bus on facebook marketplace. It's pretty well exactly what I was looking for... all mechanical engine... decent mileage with no mechanical issues and decent maintenance records.
We loaded up my '90 f350 crew cab with tools and fuel and rolled out at 3am on Saturday.
After daylight broke.. was able to get a pic.
Miles and miles of flat ground...
Coming into Iowa
The bus is a '93 IH 3800 / Ward body. DTA360/545 w/ 270k on the clock. No leaks... decent records (fresh brakes, filters, etc). Decent steer tires but the drives are THIN. Cant complain... $1500 and a clean title. The pastor of the church we bought it from went over everything with us and then had me drive it around the town and up the interstate with him to make sure it was what we wanted. Drove like a champ... no shimmys.. smooth power... stopped great.. and would run 65mph. Pastor was nice enough to put $40 worth of fuel in the tank and fresh batteries. Only mechanical issue is the parking brake (which we were informed about before we went up there). Finished up the paperwork and pointed it towards home.
Since it was good and warm, we stopped and filled the tanks (on the bus and truck) and pinned it to the governor most of the way home.
Made a stop to stretch our legs and check things over... No leaks anywhere... 60psi oil pressure at anything off idle.. 180 coolant temp. after running for 4 hours on the governor.
Back on the road to discover the headlights SUCKED. Aimed in the trees off the road... good times.
Coming into my hometown by moonlight.
Long day but what an experience. I was pretty nervous on the way up as I've never driven a bus this size. Plenty of big trucks / box trucks.. but nothing quite this long before. It was a blast.
Drive home took a bit longer than the trip up.. just over 8 hours to get home with it pinned the whole way. SUCKED fuel... Likely because we are on winter blend and it was on the governor the whole way... but averaged 6.7mpg. No smoke.. no haze... ran amazing the whole time.
Got home in time to take a shower and crash... haven't slept that good in a long time.
More to come!