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Old 06-29-2022, 02:59 PM   #1
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Bluebird All American Drivers floor Wood

Iím removing the wood from the drivers floor. 91 model.

The wet plywood goes under the plate that the break and gas pedals bolt to, and it appears that the wood goes underneath the steering column mount.

I suppose that I need to take all that stuff out in order to remove the wood.

I can also see daylight up to the front next to the column and I am guessing that the wood was what was filling the gap.

If anyone has done this and can save me any trouble through advice, please speak up!!!!

I am guessing also that the wood space underneath the gas pedal affects the plate and the linkage!?

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Old 06-29-2022, 03:50 PM   #2
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Also the wood disappears under the front cowl, and under the drivers left side, where the fuse panel is.

In need of advice please
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Old 06-30-2022, 12:42 PM   #3
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that plywood is often underneath a lot of stuff.. on a conventional bus they would mate the body and chassis then install the plywood for the chassis area to bring the floor up to level.. that plywood goes down early in the build proccess.. the easiest thing t do is replace it.. install new marine grade ply wood and everything matches back up...



typically the heater boxes, seats, brakes, steering column, etc are on top of the wood as these items in an FE / RE are installed after the wood.. the plywood was optional so things will fit back together without it as busses could be ordered with or without..
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Old 06-30-2022, 05:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
that plywood is often underneath a lot of stuff.. on a conventional bus they would mate the body and chassis then install the plywood for the chassis area to bring the floor up to level.. that plywood goes down early in the build proccess.. the easiest thing t do is replace it.. install new marine grade ply wood and everything matches back up...

typically the heater boxes, seats, brakes, steering column, etc are on top of the wood as these items in an FE / RE are installed after the wood.. the plywood was optional so things will fit back together without it as busses could be ordered with or without..
Very helpful. I just got the wood strip out from under the sheet metal bump in that contains the fuse panel. It had been put in after the floor because there were screws underneath it!

I used an oscillating saw with a metal/ wood with nails blade.

I suspected that there were screws under there because it was not budging, but I also suspected that the wet wood had swollen and was stuck. Turns out both were the case.

These things were not meant to be worked on. It was messing with my head, because I am used to working on things that were made to be taken apart.

I kept thinking, there is no way anyone would put screws under there.

But they did.
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Old 06-30-2022, 05:30 PM   #5
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I like the idea of putting plywood back in, because it sure would be easier.

But until I get it all out and see what I am dealing with…

I know that water is getting in. If I don’t fix all the leaks, the plywood will soak it right up like last time.

I’m considering dimpling the floor around some drain holes so that the water can get out.

Then I can put down pvc which will not soak up water.

I know that the capillary action will draw it in and hold it, but if I put it down with adhesive, there will not be much if any of that.
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Old 06-30-2022, 06:52 PM   #6
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definitely work to seal up the water so you dont harbor mold... the interesting thing was that the old GMC busses (think fishbowl city busses of the 60s - early 80s) have plywood floors that are NOT on top of metal.. thats right crawl under one of those busses and see the wood!! they used high quality marine grade plywood and without the metal any water that got in found its way to an edge and wicked its way out..



as for working on school busses?? yeah ha!! my DEV bus was designed factory so that if you blew a heater motor in the driver console heater box you had to completely remove the heater box from the bus.. which meant removing the driver seat from the bus.. opening up the heater hose chaseway to diasconnect the hoses and lose the coolant.. remove the box.. so the work and put it back in.... yeah I gutted that box and replaced it with a heat / cool unit I can slide out and replace the motors in if needbe...
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:23 PM   #7
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Hidden screws 91 bluebird AA

Drivers floor, hidden (impossible to get to, or see) screws holding floor down.

For removing the floor under the drivers seat: I will tell what I did, then T the end of this post I will tell you how I would do it next time.

I removed all the trim bits that I could see, and started prying. Turns out that this part of the floor is screwed down instead of nailed. That did not make a lot of difference because the wood was so wet that the screw heads just pulled through when pryed.

The wood was trapped under the bump out for the fuse panel and started to break. So I took my oscillating saw (regular wood blade) and cut within a half inch of the bump out the whole length. I had already cut around the column and pedal assemblies,

I started prying again ad got the majority of the wood up in one piece.

But I fought with the bit under the bump out, figured it was swollen stuck, and maybe screwed also.

I worked my tail off making enough room cutting between the rubber and the wood to make enough room to see if it would pull out, it did not. But I had made enough room to probe with the saw and find the screws (I switched to a wood with nails blade) found and cut them (3) and pulled the wood out.

I then started prying up front the other side of the column from the pedals and found that the wood went at least 2Ē under sheet metal hiding underneath the rubber. Watch your wood blade, you will hear it.

NEXT TIME: I would remove the trim pieces first, then with a wood blade (not wood with nails yet) on an oscillating saw and cut up the side of the bump out to the end, and over and in front of the pedals behind the column to the bump out cut.

Cut carefully so as not to dull the blade on the floor, and you will hear when you are there. If you are cutting with the teeth at a 45 you will hear banging instead of your teeth getting dull. And the wood blade will not eat up the floor. Also they are cheaper than the better blades.

Then pry up the floor, you can cut it in small pieces, but I use a lot of pry bars, levers and a bottle jack and take it up in one piece. Works for me.

You could strip the rubber off, and the screws will just break right off, but the rubber is a terrible pain to get up, that is why I did it the other way.

With the big part out of the middle, you can assess how much water got in, where and how bad the rust is, and what you are going to do about it.

Mine leaked in through the fuse block door and leaked towards the doghouse, and up front to about the column. My guess is that you will find something similar.

FUTURE: I will know later if I should have taken the column support and pedal assembly out first.

I still have the get the wood out from under the front firewall sheet metal. Then I will reassess.

I will post pictures immediately with descriptions
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:25 PM   #8
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91 bluebird AA drivers floor

Iíd you look hard you can see the wood underneath the bump out.

I put it back in to show.
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:28 PM   #9
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Theee screws

Two pics. One showing where they are. Black sharpie on the wood, chalk on the floor easier to see.

The othe pic is outside. Shows the cut screws.
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:30 PM   #10
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Photos are not particularly good. Sorry, I am a worker, not a photographer. But hopefully the commentary is helpful.
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:36 PM   #11
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Thanks for adding the pictures. I haven't tackled the driver's floor yet. This thread helps motivate me to do so.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:00 PM   #12
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Thickness under pedal assembly

The first picture I took did not reflect reality. Be careful when using a camera to help or magnify measurements.

I did get a good pic, but only after trying multiple times.

I measure for a living and it is slightly greater than 13/16Ē with wood and rubber. I finally got a picture to replicate what I could see.

The mark on the scale is at 13/16Ē

I will shoot for a total thickness of 13/16. If I use something thinner, I will shim under the pedal assembly maybe up to 20 thousandths greater depending on what I can manage. Will be close enough.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:11 PM   #13
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In the bad picture, you can see the bent up toe of the firewall, and under it a screw.

I would rather not have bent up that sheet metal, but I do not know how I would have gotten the wood out, otherwise. It will bend back down.

It may not be obvious in the picture, the floor ends after the toe. The only thing that fills the gap between the steel floor and the firewall is the wood.

There is a little light showing at the right of the picture

I tried taking pictures, but the light coming through overexposed oth pictures.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:19 PM   #14
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Careful!!!!!

Be careful not to cut your shifter cable!

I nicked mine.

It is very frustrating working on something that was never meant to be serviced.

Fortunately it is not bad, but learn from my mistakes.

I really wish that there was one of these I could follow.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:21 PM   #15
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BTW: I bent my sheet metal toe up so that I could get the wood out from under it. It will bend back down with some screws.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:30 PM   #16
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The first pic is of the hard fought pieces after the electrical bump out and to the left of the column, under the sheet metal toe. Not nice, not easy. But possible. Just be careful!

The next picture is of most of the tools I used to get the wood up and out.
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:32 PM   #17
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Oops

I could not figure out how to swap in the right picture, so here are the pieces that can put under the sheet metal.
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Old 07-01-2022, 05:31 PM   #18
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Whooooooooo!!!!!!!

Happy am I

I have concluded that the water and rust did not get within an inch of the column support or the pedal assembly!

So I am glad that I did not remove them.

No rust, no problem. This bus is not going to compete for concourse de elegance. It is not.

As an engineer I know that sometimes you have to shoot the engineer and build the thing. Lol.

These busses are a ton more work than I expected, and since my life goal is not to build a better than necessary bus. This is not just good, it is just good enough, and that is better than bad , and better than bad is good. Lol

The car that I am building the bus to carry around is going to be the example of better than necessary.

While this post might be a relief to some and a disappointment to others, It makes perfect sense to me.

If the rust was obviously running under the column support and pedal assy. I would be pulling them out, just in case anyone is curious about my distinction.

I scraped the rust down and gave it a coat of Ospho.

Might get another coat on before sunset.

Back to it on Sunday!
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Old 07-01-2022, 05:37 PM   #19
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Ad donít miss this little booger on the left in front of the bump out.

It would have been easier if I had known it was there.
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Old 07-01-2022, 06:24 PM   #20
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Still on a roll.

I found an oooooold can of Eastwoodís rust encapsulator. It was pretty lumpy at first, but with some lacquer thinner it stirred out!

Used a heat gum to make sure that all my washing up of the Ospho was dried up, and went to town.

By Sunday it will be good and dry. That rustolium stuff takes forever to harden up. This stuff was stiffening up as I used it. For real.

I donít remember what I bought it for, but I do remember the color, and how quick it kicked.

Canít even get the old stuff anymore.

Painted my model A with it (black) and as far as I know, it is still good. Held up great while I had it.

Iím guessing that I bought it at the same time as the black.for the A. That was 18 years ago? Ish
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