I'm a (former) road warrior pro photographer/pro trucker/ driver manager (current occupation) / and woodworker (hobbyist, but fairly serious with a decent set of tools at hand) I used to live full time in a 27' 5th wheel RV, and have criss-crossed the US several times in my younger days.
I'm considering buying a skoolie to perform three tasks.
Phase or Task I: For awhile, from intial purchase until oh, about 6 months to a year after that, I'm going to gut it and re-floor it as a mobile woodworking shop. Mobile inasmuch as it will be on wheels and at least potentially 'able' to roll down the highway. I certainly don't plan on woodworking while rolling down the highway. I have a pretty good set of woodworking tools, which will ultimately help me in phase three.
Phase two will be to use the bus as an erstwhile moving van. I'm looking to move the wife and kids and mother in law to a warmer climate, once I locate a new 'home' to move to work wise.
I realize that a true ryder y'all haul might be cheaper, but If I do it right, I should be able to do the move with just one trip in the bus, plus perhaps one smaller ryder rental which the company would pay for. The car and pickup we have would become toads for the trip.
Phase II isn't critical, and in fact it may wind up that theShop Bus just moves itself to wherever we wind up, with the LOML driving it, while I pilot a Ryder with the household goods in it, and the econocruiser on a flatbed trailer. (Pickup will likley be on site by then as I expect I will move to the new job before the family can follow me).
Phase III if all goes well, is where I keep a minimum complement of tools on board (I'm a scrollsaw fan, and that plus just a minimal work table wouldn't take much space at all out of the floor plan for the 'finished' bus) and convert the bus into a 'getaway' rig, not a full on RV, but with enough ameneties to be somewhat comfortable camping and seeing the sights occasionally.
there's the Intro and the concept, now the questions:
I've seen several cutaway busses, where a section of the bus is chopped and the owners are left with a deck of sorts, shortening the enclosed floor space. What all is involved in keeping the structure of the bus intact when you do that? Are there any who have done something like that and posted a 'how to" on it? I looked (briefly) in the tutorials, but didnt' see any threads related to that job.
I'd love to have about a 6' to 8' long section of open space available to use as the floor of my shop. Think open air 'garage' on the tail of the bus. If I move the rear cap forward, obviously I'm going to lose some floorspace in the 'living' section of the rig. I'm not looking at the bus as a full timer rig, more of a 'roughing it' boondocker rig.
I remember a project from a magazine years ago, where they outfitted a VW microbus with drop down beds, essentially like a popup camper's bunks, has anyone incorporated something like that into their bus to conserve floorspace?
Thanks for looking, and any tips will be greatly appreciated. I'll be exploring more, and hopefully posting on my blog and in the galleries here as I build my bus/shop.
Speaking of my 'Blog, http://busquest.blogspot.com
is my Bus conversion page. I originally wanted an intercity coach, but I've reconsidered and think a Skoolie is more my style.
I also have a 'Blog on http://lakeportscroller.blogspot.com/
which is dedicated to my current shop-less status.