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Old 07-19-2020, 05:24 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 13
Year: 1996
Engine: DT466E Diesel
Should I Buy This Bus?

Hey guys,

Around this time last year I bought a 1997 Thomas 444e bus, itís the shorter version, around 6 windows with an upfront handicap door near the front entrance. It had a good motor on it and made the trip from Wisconsin to MN no problem., but after doing the initial tear down I had a couple problems. It had significant rust on the floor, now it wasnít as bad as some Iíve seen but between that, needing to patch holes in the back door, a couple broken windows, and just recently we lost the key. A big problem for us during this conversion is accessibility of getting to it to work on it at my parents place which is a few hours away.

Recently I found a 10 window 2003 Bluebird with the 466, which is a highly sought after bus. Itís a little longer, runs way better and only has about 170,000 miles. Compared to the one I have now which we have no idea how many miles are on it because the speedometer, fuel gage, and miles are uncertain. But this seller will actually let me work on it in town here so itís easier to get to. Hes selling for about 3 grand. Hmmm what do you guys think? Worth the upgrade?
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Old 07-19-2020, 05:52 PM   #2
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musigenesis's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 3,572
Year: 2003
Coachwork: International
Chassis: CE 300
Engine: DT466e
Rated Cap: 65C-43A
The pics are of an 8-window Blue Bierd (arr, matey!), aren't they? I think these 8-window FEs are pretty rare and desirable. (edit: never mind, it's a dog nose, I need to learn to look at pictures better)

I bought a rusty bus and if I'd swapped it out early on for a better bus, even if it cost me a few thousand I'd be ahead of the game today. You might even be able to sell your current bus for close to that (maybe not here but on FB) and make this a lateral move. Not having to travel a long distance to work on your bus is HUGE.

On the other hand, sometimes the devil you know is preferable to the devil you don't.
Rusty 87 build thread
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