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Old 10-10-2020, 02:25 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 25
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner // 1218S
Engine: 6.7L Cummins
Rated Cap: 78
How do you feel about auctions?

We are having some difficulty finding the bus we are looking for. So we are now considering buying our bus through an auction site. It makes both my wife and myself a bit nervous. There is such limited information available, and the buses are really far away, making it difficult to visit and check them out. Also, we are getting mixed results on getting them to answer our questions ahead of time (when you are even able to do so.)

So how do you feel about auctions? What was your experience? Any input would be appreciated.
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Old 10-10-2020, 02:37 PM   #2
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Auctions can be good. HOWEVER...

Research the vehicle application / engine / transmission / incomplete chassis on which a bus is based for common problems. Inspect in person prior to sale or pay a qualified mechanic to do so for you. NEVER buy sight unseen. There is always the possibility the vehicle info listed is incomplete or completely inaccurate. Ask me how I know...
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Old 10-10-2020, 02:39 PM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
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Year: 1999
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Chassis: International
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Auctions are the best place to get the best deal on a used bus. Most come from being recently retired due to age or mileage, but are well maintained by the school system. Often you can call the transportation garage and speak to the manager who can give you more details on the bus. They have no dog in the fight themselves, so they are usually honest about any issues. Many of the bus sales outfits buy the same buses , wash them, double/triple the price and park it on the lot. Look for buses at auction in areas that are not near the rust belt to minimize any rust issues that WILL be present.Yes, you take a chance bidding/buying something unseen, but I've gotten excellent deals on buses bought sight unseen from 2500 miles away. Assume any mileage stated is incorrect unless it shows approx 10k miles a year.
Don't look for a bus anywhere near your local area, you will be disappointed no matter how cheaply you can get it.

NEVER buy a bus unseen is a sure way to pass up some awesome deals.
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Old 10-10-2020, 02:39 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 25
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner // 1218S
Engine: 6.7L Cummins
Rated Cap: 78
Thanks CheeseWagon. I'm always grateful for your input!
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Old 10-10-2020, 08:04 PM   #5
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Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 5,007
Year: 2003
Coachwork: International
Chassis: CE 300
Engine: DT466e
Rated Cap: 65C-43A
Quote:
Originally Posted by WalterNY View Post
We are having some difficulty finding the bus we are looking for. So we are now considering buying our bus through an auction site. It makes both my wife and myself a bit nervous. There is such limited information available, and the buses are really far away, making it difficult to visit and check them out. Also, we are getting mixed results on getting them to answer our questions ahead of time (when you are even able to do so.)

So how do you feel about auctions? What was your experience? Any input would be appreciated.
My bus spent its life before me in Buffalo and then Syracuse. You are absolutely doing the right thing getting a bus from elsewhere via auction, regardless of the difficulties that will entail.
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Old 10-10-2020, 08:17 PM   #6
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However, let's clarify here. Northern-state origin buses are to be avoided. In a southern state, getting one local to you is not a problem.
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Old 10-10-2020, 09:29 PM   #7
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Join Date: Sep 2018
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Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
I got my bus at auction. As it turned out, the bus company, Student Transportation of America, cleared the ODB codes. My bus needs a turbo, so it’s a 50% penalty for me. If I would have known it needed a turbo I would have passed on it. Still, other than the turbo it’s clean clean clean, so I’m happy.
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Old 10-10-2020, 09:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danjo View Post
I got my bus at auction. As it turned out, the bus company, Student Transportation of America, cleared the ODB codes. My bus needs a turbo, so itís a 50% penalty for me. If I would have known it needed a turbo I would have passed on it. Still, other than the turbo itís clean clean clean, so Iím happy.
I'd rather pay a bit more than necessary for a clean bus that needs a $1000 repair than a rusty bus that is otherwise perfect.
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