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Old 02-05-2021, 03:31 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Am I jumping in to quickly?

I’ve been lurking for a few years but I’m finally ready to jump in with both feet. I have a place to park and work on my bus. I have tried to read up on engines and transmissions but I’m not mechanically inclined. I know there are some to avoid especially since I will be traveling the west coast.

I found a bus I like the look of, the owner has had it for about a year. He started to convert it but his wife doesn’t share his dream. He doesn’t know the details of the engine or transmission. The only way for me to find out is to meet him there. It’s only a few hours away. He has it parked on acreage he owns so it’s not convenient for him either. I have a friend who know more about diesel engines that will be going with me. I’m assuming I can get the engine and transmission info off the bus somehow.

Some info I do know. It’s a 2000 International. 152,000 miles, the walls have been insulated, a bed has built in the back, new tires including spare.I feel like I could continue to read and learn for the rest of my life and not be ready. Any advise is welcome and appreciated.
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Old 02-05-2021, 04:03 PM   #2
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
all you can do is go look?
were the tires new when it was parked a year ago or did he put new tires on it to get it there.
or has he recently drove it to get new tires on it to sell it.
crawl under in it over it.
look up pictures of motors and transmissions on here and have an idea in your head before you go.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:01 PM   #3
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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
Typically the engine info is on either the valve covers, or a tag on the front of the engine. Transmission there is a tag normally on the passenger side of the transmission. You will need to crawl under to see it.



If it is a Thomas bus then sit in the drivers seat and look up above the windshield, there should be a tag up there with engine and trans info.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:35 PM   #4
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Fraser Valley British Columbia
Posts: 572
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freightliner
Engine: C7 Cat
Yep as Jolly and Ronnie say just go look at as much as you can and take pic's so you can reference later.
Just my opinion but if he can't tell you what motor or trans is in it and yet he's had it a over a year and has started building already you really shouldn't rely on any detail he provides so if he says it confirm it.
Good luck with your inspection and keep us informed
Cheers

Oscar
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:37 PM   #5
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Fraser Valley British Columbia
Posts: 572
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freightliner
Engine: C7 Cat
P.S. Learning how to identify date codes on tires will be a huge benefit to you.
Just because they look good doesn't make it so.

Oscar
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Old 02-05-2021, 06:32 PM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
He bought the tires a few months after be bought the bus while he was working on it. The guy that sold it to him sold it because he was being deployed. He was a bit more passionate about it. He just texted him and got a little more info. Allison transmission and dt466 engine. I asked if he can get the model of the transmission.. still waiting.

He said he drove the bus on a few in state trips the first few months he had it. In the past 6 months he has been driving it on weekends.. just around his property to keep it moving.
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Old 02-05-2021, 06:36 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Thanks for the tips. It’s an International. I just found out it has the DT 466 and an Allison transmission but not sure which one yet.
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Old 02-05-2021, 06:36 PM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
I just googled that. Great info about the dates on the tires.. thank you ☺️
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:08 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronnie View Post
Typically the engine info is on either the valve covers, or a tag on the front of the engine. Transmission there is a tag normally on the passenger side of the transmission. You will need to crawl under to see it.
If it is a Thomas bus then sit in the drivers seat and look up above the windshield, there should be a tag up there with engine and trans info.

He bought the tires a few months after be bought the bus while he was working on it. The guy that sold it to him sold it because he was being deployed. He was a bit more passionate about it. He just texted him and got a little more info. Allison transmission and dt466 engine. I asked if he can get the model of the transmission.. still waiting.

He said he drove the bus on a few in state trips the first few months he had it. In the past 6 months he has been driving it on weekends.. just around his property to keep it moving.
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:12 PM   #10
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger bus 223 View Post
all you can do is go look?
were the tires new when it was parked a year ago or did he put new tires on it to get it there.
or has he recently drove it to get new tires on it to sell it.
crawl under in it over it.
look up pictures of motors and transmissions on here and have an idea in your head before you go.
He bought the tires a few months after be bought the bus while he was working on it. The guy that sold it to him sold it because he was being deployed. He was a bit more passionate about it. He just texted him and got a little more info. Allison transmission and dt466 engine. I asked if he can get the model of the transmission.. still waiting.

He said he drove the bus on a few in state trips the first few months he had it. In the past 6 months he has been driving it on weekends.. just around his property to keep it moving.
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:15 PM   #11
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronnie View Post
Typically the engine info is on either the valve covers, or a tag on the front of the engine. Transmission there is a tag normally on the passenger side of the transmission. You will need to crawl under to see it.



If it is a Thomas bus then sit in the drivers seat and look up above the windshield, there should be a tag up there with engine and trans info.
Thanks for the tips. It’s an International. I just found out it has the DT 466 and an Allison transmission but not sure which one yet. We are driving out to see it Sunday and will crawl under it to check it out. I appreciate the help.
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:18 PM   #12
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oscar1 View Post
Yep as Jolly and Ronnie say just go look at as much as you can and take pic's so you can reference later.
Just my opinion but if he can't tell you what motor or trans is in it and yet he's had it a over a year and has started building already you really shouldn't rely on any detail he provides so if he says it confirm it.
Good luck with your inspection and keep us informed
Cheers

Oscar
Thanks for the input, he says it’s a DT466 International with an Allison transmission but which one is unknown. We have an appointment for Sunday. I’m prepared to walk away if it’s a AT545
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:27 PM   #13
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Near Flagstaff AZ
Posts: 487
Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeBee View Post
Iím prepared to walk away if itís a AT545
May I ask why? Related to this question, what size bus is this? Where does the price fall in the range of similar buses...is it a great deal or is the seller asking a premium? Thanks for tolerating my curiosity! I think we all want to help you make the right decision, for you...and knowing more about the bus and your thought/needs/desires will help all of us provide helpful input.
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:59 PM   #14
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
May I ask why? Related to this question, what size bus is this? Where does the price fall in the range of similar buses...is it a great deal or is the seller asking a premium? Thanks for tolerating my curiosity! I think we all want to help you make the right decision, for you...and knowing more about the bus and your thought/needs/desires will help all of us provide helpful input.
From what I’ve read... it’s not a good transmission for hills. I plan on doing west coast driving and want to limit issues and have seen several posts warning away from it. I’m not mechanically inclined but Im willing to lean from others. I want a reliable bus. The bus I’m looking at is a 2000 International (Allison transmission model unknown) with 152,000 miles on it.
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Old 02-05-2021, 11:21 PM   #15
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Near Flagstaff AZ
Posts: 487
Thanks VeeBee...and is this a full-sized 40-footer or a smaller, mid-sized bus? How is the pricing...does it seem like a good deal? The AT545 was used for years in lots and lots of buses, subject to some rough driving. It's got no lock-up, so it's not going to be as efficient at power transmission as a locked powertrain. But it might be just fine for you, especially if the price is fair and the bus isn't a full-sized load. I guess what I'm getting at is this...you definitely need the right bus for you. What's right for me won't be right for you. But there are lots of factors that go into the decision and I, personally, wouldn't let an AT545 keep me from getting what's otherwise the right bus at the right price. But, if the price isn't right or the bus isn't right or you find a better option, then all those things go into the decision. There are lots of buses out there, so I applaud your "don't jump at the first one in excitement" mode. But on the other hand, sometimes the perfect bus may have one thing that doesn't tick a box...but that may not be a deal breaker.

Whatever happens, I admire that you've done research and are being thoughtful about this!
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Old 02-05-2021, 11:24 PM   #16
Bus Nut
 
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: NM USA
Posts: 355
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE 40 FEET
Engine: Cummins 8.3
I had a 545 in a tow truck 30+ years ago and used it to tow c class motorhomes and towed them over Tehachapi grade and The grapevine. I had an auxiliary cooler with fans installed and a temperature gauge and when I sold it it had 185000 miles on it and still running. It had the world famous Detroit Diesel fuel pincher 8.2 engine. If you got a speeding ticket all you had to do is tell the judge you had a fuel pincher and it was dismissed.
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Old 02-06-2021, 01:13 PM   #17
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
Thanks VeeBee...and is this a full-sized 40-footer or a smaller, mid-sized bus? How is the pricing...does it seem like a good deal? The AT545 was used for years in lots and lots of buses, subject to some rough driving. It's got no lock-up, so it's not going to be as efficient at power transmission as a locked powertrain. But it might be just fine for you, especially if the price is fair and the bus isn't a full-sized load. I guess what I'm getting at is this...you definitely need the right bus for you. What's right for me won't be right for you. But there are lots of factors that go into the decision and I, personally, wouldn't let an AT545 keep me from getting what's otherwise the right bus at the right price. But, if the price isn't right or the bus isn't right or you find a better option, then all those things go into the decision. There are lots of buses out there, so I applaud your "don't jump at the first one in excitement" mode. But on the other hand, sometimes the perfect bus may have one thing that doesn't tick a box...but that may not be a deal breaker.

Whatever happens, I admire that you've done research and are being thoughtful about this!
It is a full size bus. It’s a 13 window International, flat front bus. That’s part of my worry.. it’s large and we we will be living in it full time. And any work will need to be done by a shop so I want a bus that isn’t going to cost me a ton in repairs. They are asking 5,500. It’s a 2000 with tires that are 1 year old. And they seats are removed and the walls are insulated. I think it’s a good deal.
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Old 02-06-2021, 05:50 PM   #18
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Florida
Posts: 163
Coachwork: IC Corp
Chassis: RE-300, 42ft
Engine: 466ci
Rated Cap: 90
Not a bad price in today's market. He's not making any money for his time & effort.
Runs & drives.
Tires $$$
Gutted $
Insulated $$
Wait too long, it may be gone.

On that note, list the contact info in this thread if you decide to walk away.
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Old 02-06-2021, 10:35 PM   #19
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeMac View Post
Not a bad price in today's market. He's not making any money for his time & effort.
Runs & drives.
Tires $$$
Gutted $
Insulated $$
Wait too long, it may be gone.

On that note, list the contact info in this thread if you decide to walk away.
Iím seeing it as soon as he was able as he was out of town. He comes back Sunday at noon and Iím meeting him then. If I decide to pass Iíll definitely post it. Heís got too many irons in the fire. Heís opening a second restaurant and doesnít have the time. I think heís glad to see it go to someone who will appreciate it.
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Old 02-08-2021, 09:10 AM   #20
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2020
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeMac View Post
Not a bad price in today's market. He's not making any money for his time & effort.
Runs & drives.
Tires $$$
Gutted $
Insulated $$
Wait too long, it may be gone.

On that note, list the contact info in this thread if you decide to walk away.
Itís was definitely a no go... but no one here would want it. The amount of rust that thing had was unbelievable. You could just peel it away. I canít see that bus being good for anything but parts.
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