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Old 11-12-2019, 12:21 AM   #201
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Good progress on the floor. You've been providing inspiration to a lot of us.





I sure hope that is not blood on those rags in the pictures!
Ha, sometimes anger backfires! The red is actually red thread locker - I managed to step on the open plastic bottle thingie of it and squirt a big glob of it out onto the floor. I'm not sure what that would do to a rusty floor but I felt I should wipe it up.

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Old 11-12-2019, 01:11 PM   #202
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Ha, sometimes anger backfires! The red is actually red thread locker - I managed to step on the open plastic bottle thingie of it and squirt a big glob of it out onto the floor. I'm not sure what that would do to a rusty floor but I felt I should wipe it up.
Pretty much nothin'
Loctites an anaerobic sealant -- it will only harden properly in the absence of air. But this is why it also works as a rust preventative for fastened nuts/bolts.

You're gaining on it!
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Old 11-12-2019, 04:36 PM   #203
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See II air foil

My bus came with a See II air foil, as shown here: See II Air Foils | School Buses

I have mine temporarily off for repainting (which should happen sometime before 2050) but I was curious what these cost new so I called the company. He said they're all sold through retailers who generally charge between $650 and $1000 (that may include installation, which wouldn't be that hard - just eight rivnuts in the end cap and some bolts). A nice little bonus since I didn't even realize the bus had it when I bought it (it was visible in one picture on the listing, but I thought it was part of a building behind it or something).
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Old 11-13-2019, 12:05 AM   #204
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My bus came with a See II air foil, as shown here: See II Air Foils | School Buses

I have mine temporarily off for repainting (which should happen sometime before 2050) but I was curious what these cost new so I called the company. He said they're all sold through retailers who generally charge between $650 and $1000 (that may include installation, which wouldn't be that hard - just eight rivnuts in the end cap and some bolts). A nice little bonus since I didn't even realize the bus had it when I bought it (it was visible in one picture on the listing, but I thought it was part of a building behind it or something).
What I have read about the SEE II's they are good for keeping snow and rain-mist off of the rear windows.
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Old 11-25-2019, 05:31 PM   #205
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Floor progress

Tacked two of the side beams in place, then remembered they needed to be about 1/4" down from the lip of the other beam, not flush with it. Cut one off with a wheel and then just knocked the other one off with a mallet. Not only can't my generator handle full voltage on the welder, it can't even really do a good tack on this stuff at the voltage I can manage. I'm driving the bus to my house tomorrow to fully weld everything, but I wouldn't even risk that if the pieces weren't bolted in.

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Still futzing with the flex hose for the exhaust fix.

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Beams tacked on. One has come loose already, sigh.

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Fitting the sheet pieces for the "tray". These will each have a 2X4 (2" high) running across the middle for additional stiffening, and the sheet metal will be screwed into these 2Xs from the underside. 2" XPS foam on top of the sheet metal (and over the t-bars), and then a single piece of 3/4" plywood to cover the tray.

I have two remaining days of painting weather, so I'll be able to get the sheet metal here fully painted on the underside.

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Old 11-25-2019, 09:30 PM   #206
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I'm not a very knowledgeable welder but from the pic this doesn't look like good penetration -- it's like the weld is sitting on top of the metal.

Also hard to tell from the pix -- and I'm sure you've already been thinking about it but is the factory routing of the exhaust still gonna be the best way to do it?
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Old 11-25-2019, 09:41 PM   #207
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I'm not a very knowledgeable welder but from the pic this doesn't look like good penetration -- it's like the weld is sitting on top of the metal.

Also hard to tell from the pix -- and I'm sure you've already been thinking about it but is the factory routing of the exhaust still gonna be the best way to do it?
The welding here is dog crap. My problem is I have a 2500 watt generator and that is insufficient chooch to run my welder at its maximum voltage (18.5) which is needed to get any kind of penetration with this 3/16" steel. I'm going to run the bus over to my house and finish these up tomorrow, where I can plug into a 30a line. I also need to pre-heat this material before doing the real welding. The four new beam pieces are also bolted on the wall side, so if my welds break during drive they won't fly off anywhere.

I'm going with the factory routing because it's simple and I know I can bend this piece in and put two clamps on (or I think I know, anyway). I haven't given any thought to rerouting, mainly because I want to do as little work on this as possible, but also because I don't see any issue with this route. Are you thinking it will be too close to my sunken subfloor?
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Old 11-25-2019, 09:57 PM   #208
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I'm not a very knowledgeable welder but from the pic this doesn't look like good penetration -- it's like the weld is sitting on top of the metal.

Also hard to tell from the pix -- and I'm sure you've already been thinking about it but is the factory routing of the exhaust still gonna be the best way to do it?
If you can knock one off with a mallet, I think you have a point.
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Old 11-26-2019, 10:47 PM   #209
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SNIP...

I'm going with the factory routing because it's simple and I know I can bend this piece in and put two clamps on (or I think I know, anyway). I haven't given any thought to rerouting, mainly because I want to do as little work on this as possible, but also because I don't see any issue with this route. Are you thinking it will be too close to my sunken subfloor?
I was just thinking of future maintenance -- Flex-pipe by nature is not a thing of permanence -- you will be replacing that section again in a year or three...

I can't imagine the exhaust is very hot by the time it gets to the back of the bus...
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Old 11-26-2019, 10:55 PM   #210
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I was just thinking of future maintenance -- Flex-pipe by nature is not a thing of permanence -- you will be replacing that section again in a year or three...

I can't imagine the exhaust is very hot by the time it gets to the back of the bus...
Well, I'm kinda racing to get my hole closed up before the middle of next month. The floor sections will be removable so I'll be able to get to it fairly easily later on - I can't imagine trying to repair that bit from underneath.

Can flex-pipe be painted?


The pipe in front of this section is pretty bad, too, so I'll have to redo the whole deal soon. Your comment about the routing made me look at it today, and I see that there would be an easier (and easier to get to from underneath) path just over the transmission, but I assume that would mean a transmission removal would require cutting the exhaust. Other than that, there seems to be nowhere else to go but the original path.
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Old 11-26-2019, 11:06 PM   #211
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Well, I'm kinda racing to get my hole closed up before the middle of next month. The floor sections will be removable so I'll be able to get to it fairly easily later on - I can't imagine trying to repair that bit from underneath.

Can flex-pipe be painted?


The pipe in front of this section is pretty bad, too, so I'll have to redo the whole deal soon. Your comment about the routing made me look at it today, and I see that there would be an easier (and easier to get to from underneath) path just over the transmission, but I assume that would mean a transmission removal would require cutting the exhaust. Other than that, there seems to be nowhere else to go but the original path.
I like the removable floor section idea!

I think the flex pipe is galvanized so you'd need a paint designed for galvanized metal and heat. And the exhaust will rust out from the inside as well due to the moisture in combustion + carbon = carbonic acid...

Depending on your miles it will hold up a couple years -- sounds like it will outlast what you're bolting it to...

Don't dwell on it -- winters coming!
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Old 11-26-2019, 11:07 PM   #212
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New exhaust

Flexible pipe was a lot less flexible than I thought. I kept thinking I could work it into place, but I think I ended up cutting the flex pipe three times and the original pipe on the bottom left three times before I managed to jam it in. Wasn't quite as close to the rail as the original, so I'll have to make a new supporting bracket.

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Not sure how I missed so badly with this one; it caught maybe 1/4" of the flex pipe on this side. I have an extra clamp so I'll re-do this one before I close up the floor.

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Old 11-27-2019, 05:59 AM   #213
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Sometimes ... "done is done" is good.
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Old 11-27-2019, 11:48 AM   #214
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New floor frame welding complete

Finished the back section last night. Had fun explaining to my mom why welding at night is not a problem.

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This section was going to be where my toilet goes, so I was planning on welding in an additional cross support here. But now I'm thinking of putting in a "sunken closet" here, basically a box that projects a foot below the floor. This would let me keep longer clothes and coats in a cabinet that only comes up to window height. It would be 21" width inside, which is about 3" wider than the Target armoire I have in my room, so it should be good.

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Welded in the end pieces for the side-to-side beams (not well, obviously - I had trouble getting at these and was more or less welding blind). The guy I hired who originally put in these beams just stuck the ends under the remaining lip of floor without spreading the load or even attaching them in any way (he said he talked to some truck guy he knew who told him not to attach to the outer walls in any way, conveniently saving him work.

These caps are just short pieces of 3" angle notched to fit around the beam and bolted to the splint beam above.

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I only tripped the circuit breaker six times doing this, pretty proud of myself.

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Old 11-27-2019, 02:33 PM   #215
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Your diligence is inspiring!
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Old 11-27-2019, 04:23 PM   #216
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I recall 01Marc saying he was surprised to find his wall ribs did not connect to the floor.

Made me wonder if the entire floor was like a self-bailing white water raft (okay, bad analogy...) in that the wall/roof body was not tied directly to the floor. The only reason would be for allowing for body flex/twist.

Hopefully someone will chime in with real knowledge...
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Old 11-27-2019, 04:47 PM   #217
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I recall 01Marc saying he was surprised to find his wall ribs did not connect to the floor.

Made me wonder if the entire floor was like a self-bailing white water raft (okay, bad analogy...) in that the wall/roof body was not tied directly to the floor. The only reason would be for allowing for body flex/twist.

Hopefully someone will chime in with real knowledge...
from what i understand is that most bus bodies are made to seperate from the chassis in a big accident where it put that much force on the bus body which takes the shock away from the kids.
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Old 11-27-2019, 05:05 PM   #218
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I recall 01Marc saying he was surprised to find his wall ribs did not connect to the floor.

Made me wonder if the entire floor was like a self-bailing white water raft (okay, bad analogy...) in that the wall/roof body was not tied directly to the floor. The only reason would be for allowing for body flex/twist.

Hopefully someone will chime in with real knowledge...
The walls are definitely attached to the floor, via the chair rail. My 11-foot section of unsupported wall is flexible enough to easily push out at the base by an inch or two (not a good feeling TBH).

This video shows the ribs being attached to the chair rail from the outside:

You can see how the chair rail at the bottom bends outward and then down, creating a ledge that sits on the edge of the floor. The ends of the ribs go down onto formed projections. The video does not show the "bolts" attaching the ribs to the chair rail, but these are driven from the inside (you can see two of the heads on the chair rail for every rib) and I guess are friction-driven since the heads are completely smooth but they're basically big sheet metal screws (if you have a splice on your chair rail you can see what these look like if you can peer down behind it).

The base of that chair rail also then has these same bolts driven down into the floor (I could see this clearly when I deconstructed my rear corner). So the ribs are screwed into the chair rail, and the chair rail is screwed into the floor.
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Old 11-27-2019, 05:06 PM   #219
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from what i understand is that most bus bodies are made to seperate from the chassis in a big accident where it put that much force on the bus body which takes the shock away from the kids.
This is true, but I think banman is talking about how the walls of the bus body are attached to the floor of the bus body - you definitely don't want the walls and roof of a bus flying off in an accident.
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Old 11-27-2019, 10:03 PM   #220
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Your diligence is inspiring!
Thank you!
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