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Old 06-12-2007, 02:04 PM   #1
Bus Nut
captainkf's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Rossland BC, Canada
Posts: 433
Year: 1985
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: GMC
Engine: 366 propane
Rated Cap: 56
mechanical questions and help please!

So we moved to BC and all is well. Everything except the bus that is. We had to have a mechanical inspection done on it (which is a good thing I guess). This is now it's fourth inspection in under 3 years (we move alot it seems). I got back a long list of problems. Most of them are small, however there are a couple biggies that I don't want to pay a shop to fix if I can avoid.

It is a 56 pax 1985 gmc bluebird dognose with a propane conversion. New engine and $2200 misc mechanical last year. The shop quoted $2000 parts and $3000 labour . That was to fix everything, including a few minor things not listed here. They are a reputable shop, however I think they are used to dealing with large businessess that aren't as concerned about the details and pricing as I am.

So here are the ones I need some assistance with:

1- Rear brakes seized or not engaging. They are not activating when the pedal is pushed. It looks as though some salt water (winter) made it's way into the hub and wreaked havoc. We had new liners put in last year in halifax and they worked great. I now need to remove the tires and wheels to access the area. Can this be done without power tools? They broke the hardware free during inspection so it should come off without too much of a fight. Is it somthing that may be able to be dissassembled, freed and re-assembled? The shop mentioned they sell the entire assembly (brakes, springs, ?hub?) also.

2- front strut leaking oil and needing replacement. Do I jack up the front then remove, replace and reinstall? Can it be this simple? Are they pricey?

3- Exhuast rusted through behind muffler. The whole thing muffler back has gotta go. I have seen people use flexible tubing to replace comercial exhuast systems before, is this safe? Can I run the exhuast out in front of the rear tire instead of all the way to the rear? A shorter run to me seems more effective.

4 - Adjusting parking brake. How do I do this? I have air assisted hydrualic braking.

5- Steering column bushing. It is accessible, but what are the steps?

6- Replacing the power steering pump or rebuilding the existing one. It is tired and does not work well anymore. How do I know what size it needs to be replaced with?

Thanks for any help.


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Old 06-12-2007, 06:20 PM   #2
Bus Geek
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Saint James, MN
Posts: 2,669
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Re: mechanical questions and help please!

1. I use a hi-lift jack, a pipe, and a breaker bar on really stuck horizontal bolts. Yep, it's booty, but with a 5000 lbs lift capacity and a 3 foot pipe I can get 15,000 ft lbs of torque on a lugnut.

2. Is it actually a strut or just shock? If it's a shock it's a simple two bolt operation to replace it. I can't imagine why you would have struts.

3. Many buses in town here are set up that way. I'm not sure what regulation requires, but if it's legal, I would do it.

4. No clue

5. See #4

6. There should be a number stamped on the pump. If all else fails just pull it off and bring it somewhere. The more commercially oriented the place you bring it to, the better. Autozone probably isn't going to be much help, but it's worth a shot.
Skooling state at a time...
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