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Old 08-22-2019, 07:15 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: St Louis
Posts: 13
Sanity check / Recommendations / expectation leveling.


I need some level setting and a reality check. I want to do a skoolie and I have a whole bunch of things that I want but I need some experienced minds to level set me and tell me what is feasible and what is not.

My family and I are in the process and changing our traveling castle. Right now we have a 27-year-old 26 ft Class C which we love, but with 2 adults, 3 kids and a dog we need something bigger or better suited for us.

We are not a fulltime family but we go out a dozen weekend a year and at least two 2 or 3 weeks cross country trips a year. We love RVing and would love to do it as much as we could.

We mostly stay at state and national site and do a little boondocking but very little.

I have been looking at Skoolies for a while and love the look, vide and simplicity but I cannot find a used one that meets our needs, which why I am emailing you.

What we are looking for is:


- Queen bed in the back
- 3 Bunk beds (3 on top of each other)
- Dinette for 6
- Kitchen with sink, dual Fridge and gas stove
- Full bathroom (shower, toilet, sink)
- AC
- Water tank
- Grey tank
- Propane tank

Would like to have:

- Solar panel with a 12-volt system
- Black Tank
- RV entry door
- Screens on windows
- Awning.
- Outside Shower and 110V plugs

Also, I would like to keep the RV as short as possible. 30ft would be ideal but could live with a little longer.

Now here is the surreal part…. Our budget. I originally had planned for $25,000 but would go to $32,000 to really get what we want. I looked at your website and know that I am under budget for a finish RV.

Let me know your thoughts.... Thank you
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Old 08-22-2019, 08:06 PM   #2
Bus Geek
o1marc's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
Posts: 9,030
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Genesis
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466/3060
Rated Cap: 77
You're going to need a full size, 35-40' bus for all that. You can build a really nice one for $32K.
It's hard to fit a FULL size bathroom, FULL size bedroom, and a Full size kitchen in a space only 7.5' wide. Wanting a queen bed would mean a rear engine bus to put it over the engine bay to take up the least room.

Go to the UserCP above and fill out your profile so we know where you are and can better assist finding a bus for you.
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Old 08-23-2019, 07:46 PM   #3
Bus Nut
TheHubbardBus's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Hotzona
Posts: 932
Year: 2003
Coachwork: IC
Chassis: 3800
Engine: Navistar T444e
Rated Cap: 24
Here's a worksheet I created - exported to pdf so i could attach it here - that might help. Sorry about the end getting cut off and wrapped to page 2. That's due to the export and I'm too lazy to figure out how to fix it.

It calculates approximate interior (house section) and exterior (total length) dimensions based on the number of windows/seat rows. Take it with a grain of salt - all buses are different - but the 28"-per-window approximation I used apparently works fairly well for a large percentage of standard skoolies. The calcs were pretty much dead on compared to the actual bus we got (FE dog nose IC 3800)

Two configs are covered, FE dog nose and RE transit. I didn't figure for FE transit because we ruled that out for our use first thing.

The national parks thing... that's a big grain of salt. It's based on some guys website that sounded like he did the research & knew what he was talking about, but who knows. As a rough ball-park figure it's probably usable, but don't hold me to it. Note this is just for lengths allowed. I have no idea what if any other restrictions may apply.

Finally, consider a 24V solar system for as much as it sounds like you'll want/need.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf bus_length_calcs.pdf (20.6 KB, 7 views)
-Sharon & Jody
Mr Beefy Short Bus Acquisition & Build Thread
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