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Old 10-10-2020, 08:13 PM   #1
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Re-Routing Skoolie Exhaust Overhead?

As I've mentioned in some other threads, I have severe asthma. Thus, I have learned that in order to keep it at bay, diesel power may not be the best move for me, so I have given thought to going with a gasoline or propane-powered rig, as I'm not sure I will be traveling much anyway. Gasoline and propane, however, limit my options as far as size and equipment (I prefer air brakes, and very few gas / LP rigs get those).

I had thought about possibly routing exhaust on a diesel-powered rig straight up through the floor in a sort of enclosed vertical tunnel built into the left-rear or right-rear corner of the body, as transit buses are set up. However, the tunnel would have to be pretty much air-tight and leak-proof to prevent exhaust gases from leaking into the cabin, should an exhaust leak develop. There is also the consideration that a vertical exhaust outlet could ignite nearby trees if parked too close while still hot.

Furthermore, because keeping my asthma at bay requires a pretty steady temperature of 68-70 maximum (66-68 is best), I would obviously have to plan climate control with this in mind, which means if the exhaust is going up and out the roof, my HVAC air intakes need to be low on the body, which means floor-mount / wall-mount systems.

I'm sure this is all doable, I just worry about creating unstoppable leaks in modifying the body for the re-routed exhaust and modifying the floor and body for the necessary changes. I also cannot do this sort of work myself, which means relying on others to do it, and that's a lot of work to ask someone else to do, regardless of whether reasonable payment is involved.

I am still not certain I will be able to get any of this pulled off, but a possibly suitable diesel rig has become available (pending finances) and it has gotten me thinking about all this.

I welcome any thoughts.
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Old 10-10-2020, 08:42 PM   #2
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I think it’s doable (with a bunch of work)but why not just put a stack on the outside of the bus? I’ve seen at least two like this on the internet somewhere. Just make sure it has a good heat shield for the unsuspecting passerby
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Old 10-10-2020, 08:52 PM   #3
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I think it’s doable (with a bunch of work)but why not just put a stack on the outside of the bus? I’ve seen at least two like this on the internet somewhere. Just make sure it has a good heat shield for the unsuspecting passerby
I've considered that, but if parked where tall grass and other foliage is a concern, it is best to keep it within the bus body. Also the possibility of an external stack bolted to the body getting hung up on its surroundings. Besides, I'm wondering if such an arrangement would pass a state inspection. Maybe neither arrangement would...?
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Old 10-10-2020, 09:18 PM   #4
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Hey Cheese
I think that's a great idea and I think if put together well it shouldn't be a problem for an inspector, they may even appreciate the effort. As you said its standard practice for transit buses. Getting that exhaust up higher is much easier for it to dissipate. Something that is just starting to develop in the RV world is that some RV parks are starting to require that RV generator exhaust must be vented up thru a stack to reduce the chance of an accidental poisoning of a neighbor. Something else to consider is that the early emissions buses pre def fluid are much cleaner than pre emission. My 2007 Thomas is on a 2005 freightliner chassis and runs very clean.image.jpg
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Old 10-10-2020, 11:15 PM   #5
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There is also the consideration that a vertical exhaust outlet could ignite nearby trees if parked too close while still hot.
Less to be concerned with catching fire overhead with hot exhaust than on the ground i'd say.

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Furthermore, because keeping my asthma at bay requires a pretty steady temperature of 68-70 maximum (66-68 is best), I would obviously have to plan climate control with this in mind, which means if the exhaust is going up and out the roof, my HVAC air intakes need to be low on the body, which means floor-mount / wall-mount systems.
I don't think A/C will be a concern. I have not seen A/C units exchange air from the outside. Generally they cool interior air and recirculate.
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Old 10-11-2020, 12:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CHEESE_WAGON View Post

I had thought about possibly routing exhaust on a diesel-powered rig straight up through the floor in a sort of enclosed vertical tunnel built into the left-rear or right-rear corner of the body, as transit buses are set up. However, the tunnel would have to be pretty much air-tight and leak-proof to prevent exhaust gases from leaking into the cabin,

I welcome any thoughts.
Actually that don't sound like a bad idea.
A piece of pipe bout 4" larger than your exhaust should do it. You need to seal the weather out of your bus but you shouldn't need to stop airflow through the inside of the pipe and around the outside of the exhaust pipe.
Simpler yet why not run the exhaust up the outside of the back of the bus?
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Old 10-11-2020, 12:54 AM   #7
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Simpler yet why not run the exhaust up the outside of the back of the bus?
As I stated earlier, avoiding risk of fire and snagging on surroundings, not to mention avoiding issues with inspection. I like the 4-inch pipe idea.
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:04 AM   #8
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running exhaust thru a inside of a passenger carrying compartment is not legal ask a truck/bus inspector. dont think insurance would be too crazy about it also, go outside with rear facing turnouts
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:11 AM   #9
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We have a top exhaust in our bus Dory.. There is a lot of fancy insulation around the exhaust. Still the muffler is low. Ours has an automatic fire extinguisher as a prevention for the hydraulic cooling fan above it.

The exhaust tunnel is outside the interior but inside the bus exterior paneling... This engine does not smoke at all ..not even under full load.
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:46 AM   #10
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Could you please post a picture of Dory's setup for Cheese_Wagon (and others)?
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Old 10-11-2020, 08:31 AM   #11
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I like high exhaust... one of the issue with older school busses is the fact that the rear of the bus is often negatively pressureized and the rear door seals get old / leaky which results in some exhaust in the cab.. my Dev bus suffers from this.. I have also been noting that MANY new manufacturers and schools are spec'ing left side exits for the exhaust.. apparently studies have been done that even with windows open, the amount of exhaust entering the cab from a left side low exhaust is much less than a rear exhaust esp as the bus ages and the door seals begin to fail on that rear door..



since the exhaust on my DEV bus is in need of a reboot im considering going this route.. of course as i found out with mny red bus if you straight pipe it then side exit is extremely loud.. so going side exit means likely having to keep the muffler..



ive also found a simple 90 turndown on the exhaust to be a huge help in getting less exhaust smell.. I use a rear exit on the red bus and had a bit of exhaust smell inside until I got the turndown installed..


as far as air intakes.. on school busses the only fresh air intake is for the driver defroster / heater.. even if you have factory A/C, they only recirculate inside air.. as do the mid and rear heaters..



another consideration is the front engine vs rear.. a front engine bus has more potential from minuscule underhood exhaist leaks and the draft tube to end up with some gasses in the cab... small manifold leak, V-band gasket leakm the draft tube itself, any small amount of oil that may leak and get on something hot enough to create fumes.. all things that could be sensitive to someone with asthma and think about. as much as ive worked-on and improved, its impossible to completely seal up the firewall from the underhood area on a dognose bus.. and the same true on an FE.. there is always a little heat / air (which means possible underhood fumes) that can get inside..



school busses are designed with the overhead front ceiling vent as a passive vent to suck out waste air.. and the driver heater air vent is the air intake for fresh air into the bus. people sealing those off may have beeter performance from heat / air conditioning but also are sealing up the designed-in methods for the bus to expel unwanted stale air..


-Christopher
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Old 10-11-2020, 08:52 AM   #12
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since the exhaust on my DEV bus is in need of a reboot im considering going this route.. of course as i found out with mny red bus if you straight pipe it then side exit is extremely loud.. so going side exit means likely having to keep the muffler..




school busses are designed with the overhead front ceiling vent as a passive vent to suck out waste air.. and the driver heater air vent is the air intake for fresh air into the bus. people sealing those off may have beeter performance from heat / air conditioning but also are sealing up the designed-in methods for the bus to expel unwanted stale air..


-Christopher
I have the exhaust exiting just in front of the drivers rear tire and I like it there a lot. And you are completely correct about noise. I have a straight through glass pack type muffler and it is borderline too loud for me. Especially when driving next to a k-rail or something else that bounces the sound right back at the bus. Itís loud enough I donít ever open the rear portion of my drivers window because itís right next to my ear. Just opening the front part keeps the noise out just fine though.

And thank you for explaining the passive vents purpose. I was confused that it would only vent the interior of the ceiling panels and figured there was more too it.
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Old 10-11-2020, 09:06 AM   #13
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Superior started the idea of air circulation.. they called it 'Circul-Air' and designed the ability for a school bus to be able to keep its inside front windows clear in cold or rainy weather with the windows closed.. you could turn the driver heater knob to 'recirc' but the manual recommended you only do that during pre-trip warm-up or when the bus was empty..


all 3 of my school busses have the vent routed into the cab itself.. my bluebird has acoustic ceiling and so you dont see the vent like you do in the Superior or the carpenter..



the 1965 Fishbowl has pull-vents under the dash that mix outside air with the front defroster directly .. there's also small ducts in that bus from the Factory central air conditioner (those old GMC busses in fact had basement Central Air-conditioners).. the ducts run into the defrost stream to help with front glass fogging..



Superior in the 1970s experimented with an evaporator coil in front of the driver heater core.. there were only a few ever built as prototypes (we had one in my school).. they were IH and had a standard front radiator condenser, a big york IH scout-style compressor, and that single coil designed for defogging.. though our driver ran it in hot weather.. she closed the hot valves and turned on the driver defroster / driver heater / and first seat heater fans.. it helped to keep her and the person behind her (usually me) cool..
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Old 10-11-2020, 10:50 AM   #14
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Running exhaust through a passenger compartment is highly illegal - it will not pass any inspection - and for a very good reason. It has a strong potential for causing the very issue you are trying to avoid.


I see 4 legal, possible alternatives.
1. Run the exhaust out the rear in the original stock configuration.
2. Run the exhaust out the rear and put stacks to bring it to the roofline.
3. Run the exhaust out one side in front of the tires.
4. If a "dognose", run the exhaust stacks adjacent to the hood in front of the windshield (this may inhibit visibility).


Mine came with the exhaust routed in front of the driver's side rear tires, I have not detected any scent of fumes so far.
Many road tractors have exhaust stacks and I haven't seen any trees set on fire. You won't be running hard enough to generate high exhaust gas temperatures when parking under any trees. These days many have ground facing turn-downs and unless they enter regen mode (for those so equipped) I've never seen a resulting grass fire. You do *NOT* want this to exit anywhere in front of the rear bumper under the bus. Out the side is fine as long as it is completely out the side.


Side note - exhaust stacks on the sides will put you over the 8' width limit and could earn you an oversize ticket.
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:17 PM   #15
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You need an Electric Bus..
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:19 PM   #16
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You need an Electric Bus..
Or a magic bus...


CNG / LP rig is sounding good about now.

To ease everyone's mind about running 'through' the body...

What I actually have in mind here is to cut out an 8" x 8" section of the body corner from floor to top, essentially rotate that piece 180 degrees (inside-out), and weld it back in. This would effectively invert that corner (think concave vs convex), creating an integral channel for which a heat-wrapped exhaust should be able to be legally and safely routed up through. Should give a 4-inch pipe 2-4 inches clearance for added heat dissipation. I certainly wouldn't run a pipe 'through' the body without isolating to the outside.
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:27 PM   #17
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Or no bus at all..a trailer that has no exhaust. Hire a tow truck to tow it, they don't have leaky exhausts.
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Old 10-11-2020, 01:28 PM   #18
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Just run it up the back outside and put one of the chrome heat shield around it like truck exhaust stacks have
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Old 10-11-2020, 04:18 PM   #19
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If running the pipe inside, I would wrap it with multi wall stove piping.
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Old 10-11-2020, 06:17 PM   #20
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If running the pipe inside, I would wrap it with multi wall stove piping.
I was going to say, seems like a potential way to capture heat. Wind copper tubing around it for heat exchange.



Position for this seems to be critical- I wouldn't even consider anywhere not up against a wall.
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