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Old 01-08-2021, 03:41 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 14
Here we go!

I finally pulled the trigger on a bus yesterday after lots of discussion.

Quite the adventure:

1. Drove a one-way rental 450 miles from Wisconsin to Indiana;
2. Test drove and paid cash (Why not?);
3. Drove 450 miles home.

It was a long but good day.

I have no previous bus driving experience (not hard, just big - anyone can do it). I ventured through Chicago traffic at 4pm through construction (just keep it between the lines) and your foot on the gas, until it's time to slam on the brakes. I have no idea how a large tire air pressure gauge works, or what the right pressure is (can someone fill me in on that? It seemed to go backwards...)

Seats, floor and walls this weekend. Wish me good health and wise hammering. Boom!
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Old 01-08-2021, 05:07 PM   #2
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 964
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Thomas 4 window w/lift
Chassis: G30
Engine: 350 Chevy
Rated Cap: Just me and my "stuff"?
Congrats on that derickmichael02!

Sounds like you made it "home" without any mechanical issues along the way. Right on! (just hope you weren't really standing on your head in pic 3!)

Keep your pics coming, if you go any further with it.
Good luck...
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Old 01-08-2021, 05:30 PM   #3
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,948
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Wayne
Chassis: International Loadstar 1700
Engine: 345 international V-8
looks like a high roof model. Oh those mirrors I can tell lots of stories about them....


Nice find, they are nice cruising buses. 6th gear can be unlocked, look up the thread on this forum about it. I am assuming it has the Allison 3060 trans. What engine does it have?
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:00 PM   #4
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Georgia
Posts: 2,196
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: IH
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 14
I have and use an air gauge like this one:
Feel free to shop around as these are very common and not too expensive. Note - the end that gets the pressure has one end that is "straight" (some are available with both sides at an angle), which I prefer since I find it's easier to slip onto the valve of the inner tires.
Large tires typically run 85-120 PSI. The company I work for has a policy that considers the tires "flat" at anything 80 PSI or less. I run around 100 in the 10R22.5 tires on my bus. Tire pressures are the source of much debate and beyond the scope of my reply, but as long as you're showing 90+ PSI you should be fine.
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:29 PM   #5
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 14,414
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
I use a combo tire gauge / filler hose with a clip on chuck. its easy to fill and check at same time.


https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:32 PM   #6
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Swansboro,NC
Posts: 1,434
Year: 86
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford B700
Engine: 8.2
Rated Cap: 60 bodies
i read this???
and not trying to make the OP feel stupid? i really am not? already apologize if i do!!!
the air pressure guage on your dash is not tire air pressure?
it means you have AIR BRAKES.
your first order of business should be researching your air brake system and learn how to maintain it.
it drops down pressure everytime you step on the brakes.
if the tanks do not have auto drains then you need to get under there and drain them but only after you have an idea of what you have.
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Old 01-08-2021, 06:45 PM   #7
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Swansboro,NC
Posts: 1,434
Year: 86
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford B700
Engine: 8.2
Rated Cap: 60 bodies
or maybe i am being overly super safety?
a tire pressure guage doesnt go backwards? the pressure is what it is?
well then again i have never put a guage on a leaking tire to see if it pulls the needle/stick guage back in? you know its leaking find where and fix it?
i assume the OP thought his air pressure guage was tire air pressure?
i could be wrong and if i am he can call me on it with no drama.
wish you luck derekmichael02 we are here to help as needed.
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:49 PM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 14
Seats coming out...

Kids are getting in on the action, too! 1/3rd down, 2/3rds to go.
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Old 01-08-2021, 07:59 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 14
Jolly Roger, I was referencing the air pressure guage at the truck stop, not the air on the dash. I just took that picture as I started driving in case I had a problem and needed to reference a normal reading. As for the Guage, once I placed it on the tire, and starting to give air, it went from a reading of '4' to a reading of '3' as air entered the tire. There were 10 lines etched in between the two. Unlike a car pressure guage which extends as the air pressure increases, this retracted as air entered. I was thoroughly confused by this. Might have been the cold, but I'll get a real guage and try it that way.
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Old 01-09-2021, 12:49 AM   #10
Bus Crazy
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Georgia
Posts: 2,196
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: IH
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 14
Right, first off, your tires. I'm not sure what you mean when the reading went from 4 to 3 as you were airing up your tire, not that it's important as truck stop air hoses and gauges are notoriously unreliable. The only thing I would half-way trust about them is to put more air in your tires (and even that's a gamble at some truck stops, since drivers have a tendency to damage them.) That said, many setups similar to what Christopher "CadillacKid" linked will, in fact, drop to a low pressure reading as you inflate a tire, but will return to a "correct" reading when you release the inflator handle (Note that the ones at truck stops are often out of calibration.) This is why I prefer using my own gauge (which I will admit, cheap ones can vary in calibrations.)


Now your dash air gauges are for your onboard air supply for air brakes. This system should typically hold 90-120 PSI - the compressor will "cut in" at around 90 and build the air up to around 120 at which point it will "cut out" (this is normal and the way they are designed to operate.) Many systems will "purge" at the 120 point as the compressor cuts out. You'll have a low air warning, both a light as well as an audible alarm which comes on around 60 PSI. If this comes on while you are driving normally, you likely have a VERY SERIOUS PROBLEM and should pull over as quickly and safely as possible. Your parking brake knob will automatically pop out around this pressure, and the parking brakes will bring you to a VERY QUICK stop, regardless where you are.
Many systems will "bleed down" when the engine is stopped. It should not leak down more than 2 PSI per minute (this is a federal threshold for commercial vehicles without trailers). Starting the engine should begin building the system back up to the 120 mark, if it does not reach this point (or close to it), you have a problem.



You may wonder if you can use your onboard air system to inflate tires and run tools. The short answer is yes, if you install an air connection for a hose. You'll want everything from the tank to this connection to be DOT rated, the last thing you want is some piece to fail going down the road and bring you to a sudden stop. The longer answer gets into CFM at certain pressures and air consumption and all that, beyond the scope of this reply.
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Old 01-09-2021, 03:36 PM   #11
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 14
Seats out

Seats are out. Floor, walls, or ceiling next? Also, any tricks for heater removel?
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Old 01-09-2021, 06:42 PM   #12
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Virginia
Posts: 1,948
Year: 1971
Coachwork: Wayne
Chassis: International Loadstar 1700
Engine: 345 international V-8
If possible leave the hoses attached and carry it out the door before disconnecting. Have bucket ready .if you do nput the heater back in remember to loop the hose . A short "u" in metal will do nicely. You are completing the circuit.
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Old 01-10-2021, 05:30 PM   #13
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Ohio
Posts: 195
Year: 2008
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: 0908S
Engine: Cummins 5.9
Rated Cap: 28' 9 window
When I disconnected my heater I used a gates hose 20568 and two 1 inch barbed connectors. Pics attached IMG_1526.jpg
IMG_1527.jpg
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Old 01-11-2021, 11:36 AM   #14
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 14
DWood443: Perfect, thanks!
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Old 01-11-2021, 11:37 AM   #15
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Ronnie: Great, thank you!
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Old 01-16-2021, 11:57 PM   #16
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: May 2020
Posts: 17
Rear engine with undercarriage score! What school district or who did you get yours from?
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Old 01-17-2021, 12:23 AM   #17
Bus Crazy
 
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Whidbey Island, WA.
Posts: 1,064
Year: 1984
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: All American
Engine: 3208 na boat anchor
Rated Cap: 2
Heater removal 101.

#1) Close coolant supply and return valves,
#2) Have a small bucket ready, and hey, if you're going to pull the floor what's a little ethylene glycol anyway.
#3) Pull hoses off the heater and connect the hoses to each other with a jumper that you have previously fabricated.
#4) Open coolant lines, bleed air out of loop if and where possible.

If you want a deforester you must maintain the coolant flow up to the front.
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Old 01-17-2021, 09:48 AM   #18
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Posts: 30
derekmichael02, congrats on the purchase and the build.
also a thanks to the others for chiming in on heater removal and tips to keep the system alive.

keep the photos coming along the way!
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