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Old 09-08-2020, 03:10 PM   #1
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Question Questions about Skoolies?

Hi all!

I've VERY new to this world, I've recently begun researching my transportation options and have settled on the idea of a conventional dog-nosed skoolie; preferably 40ft.

The most important question I have is do I need a special drivers license to own and operate a conversion? Online it says as long as it's under 15 passengers then it's fine but just covering my bases.

The blog I was reading mentioned that 40ft dog-noses have a problem with tail drag when navigating rougher terrain; could I get it lifted a few inches to prevent this? I don't want a monster truck just would like to prevent departure dragging...

Does anyone know of a software I could use to illustrate this? I'm currently using floorplanner which works well but the models are all just walls as if it were a brick and mortar house.
*on that note does anyone have dimensions they could share so I could have the model be accurate?

Thank you so much!
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Old 09-08-2020, 04:10 PM   #2
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Go to the UserCP and fill out your profile so we know where you are, helps answer your question.
Short answer, a conversion to RV status does not require a special license in most states. Normal commercial requirements come in of seating capacity, air brakes, or GVWR (26K). All waived when it's an RV.
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Old 09-18-2020, 09:23 PM   #3
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This blog post is really helpful for advice about drawing layouts! The blog also has other posts with research tips, good brands for conversion appliances/materials, etc.!
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Old 09-18-2020, 10:41 PM   #4
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I've found Floor Plan Creator on Google Play to be pretty good. It's not bus specific and has some minor kinks, but works well.
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Old 09-19-2020, 01:24 AM   #5
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Welcome aboard, Newoolie!

Yes, a 40-footer with the engine in front has a long rear overhang. Dog-nose or flat-nose does not matter much if at all. And yes, I have hit the ground a few times.

School buses usually have tow hooks at both ends, and the hooks are probably the lowest points, so the first step toward more clearance would be to remove those.

Probably yes, you could probably install spacer blocks between the springs and the axle. This would be a job for a highly competent shop -- preferably one that works with drive shafts, to be certain the drive shaft angles are still within specs.

But I would rather cut an "up-side-down beaver tail" for clearance.

Though... on the whole, rear overhang ground clearance has not been much of an issue in 65,000 miles of travels.
It is much more important to watch where the overhang is headed side-to-side. When you steer to the left, the tail swings to the right and clobbers the Bentley Silver Spur Black Label Smokey Yunick Edition somebody parked there while you were not looking.
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Old 09-19-2020, 02:22 AM   #6
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Not all states waive the driver license restrictions for RV's ... Texas requires a special endorsement if the GVWR is over 26,000 pounds, no matter what the title has as its registration type. I believe here are other states that have even more restrictions. You will need to check with your state.
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Old 09-19-2020, 06:21 AM   #7
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PA requires at least an air brake endorsement on a regular license for any vehicle so equipped, even if it's an RV. Some day I will actually get mine ...
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Old 09-19-2020, 01:08 PM   #8
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Oh, and I seem to remember someone on this forum reported... Canada requires air brake endorsement, even for US visitors, and can make you "walk" home if you do not have it.

Regardless, air brakes is a wonderful system -- that to my mind requires thorough knowledge of its workings to use safely. So I recommend studying it, at least to the level of passing the DMV test, before driving. The information is easily found online.
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