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Old 09-23-2019, 03:55 PM   #21
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Here's a better drawing of my idea. Not very engineer worthy, but then I am no engineer.


Please feel free to opine, or tell me this is unsafe if you really think it is.


IMG_0337.jpg

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Old 09-23-2019, 04:06 PM   #22
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The chop would be at about the red lines, to allow for a queen bed to fit with about an inch on each side.


IMG_0338.jpg
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Old 09-23-2019, 04:19 PM   #23
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@o1marc, that's a good point. I've never rolled anything, and I used to have a habit of almost never driving sober, but I was finally convinced to stop that.

@Joe45, I say, if you really want to do it, then do it. Obviously you are giving it a lot of thought and planning. But I agree with o1marc on the square corners idea. Maybe you should just raise the original roof to keep the curvature.
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Old 09-23-2019, 04:38 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Joe45 View Post
Here's a better drawing of my idea. Not very engineer worthy, but then I am no engineer.


Please feel free to opine, or tell me this is unsafe if you really think it is.


Attachment 37807
I feel like you could achieve the same thing (sleeping loft) more easily by doing a partial roof raise in the rear (say, the back eight feet or so) three feet high. You'd still have a loft with a lower-height working area underneath, without the technical difficulty of properly cantilevering a structure that projects forward without support underneath. It would be fugly as hell, but not any fuglier than your plan.

Somebody argue with me, I'm about to hit 1000 posts. I get a new bus when that happens, right?
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Old 09-23-2019, 05:07 PM   #25
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Thanks everybody. I do appreciate the input!
The more I think of it, and the more I read your input-it just seems like a big risk chopping the front.



I like the idea of doing it in the back with a partial roof raise. I could have my office and drawing/editing suite underneath.


Or, going back to my original idea of building a 3' tall Pod on top with a telescoping roof with a 2' rise, giving me 5' of headroom.
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Old 09-23-2019, 09:04 PM   #26
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As a commercial truck driver, it's actually difficult to roll an empty bus. Now add inn all that extra weight, fridge, beds, electronics, and a loft bed, maybe then it might roll. But you'd have to be driving way to fast for a curve in the first place. As for rolling past the side and on to the top part, you'd have to be going way fast, and maybe if you were rolling down hill....still highly unlikely. Imo
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Old 09-23-2019, 11:24 PM   #27
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I'm trying to picture the speed you need to roll a bus on it's roof. I think too much thought is put into this. How many members have ever rolled a bus on it's side, let alone onto it's roof. My theory that these are so over built was cemented when I learned that the Wander Lodge by Blue Bird has half the ribs as in the school bus, don't ever hear of those crushing in a rollover. Replacing the curved roof with a square edged one would seriously compromise crash stability.
You don't need any speed, all you have to do is get too far over and fall down an embankment. Not saying this is going to happen, just saying the loft is not likely to take it well.

A factory built class C would do much worse, I saw one that fell off a road, all the pieces were piled on the frame by hand. The cab was OK the rest just flat pieces. There was nothing that 2 guys couldn't carry up a steep bank. It kind of looked like a truck with a load of debris about 2 feet high on it as it was towed in.
I spose that crackerbox absorbed all the impact and saved the cab in the roll over.

That being said, I would still drive a class C even though I don't understand how it can be legal to let anyone ride in the back.
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Old 09-24-2019, 12:45 AM   #28
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Somebody argue with me, I'm about to hit 1000 posts. I get a new bus when that happens, right?
Nope,you just go crazy ... as in Bus Crazy. Congratulations on your 1000th post.
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Old 09-28-2019, 04:55 PM   #29
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I know I have seen one somewhere. Whole roof raised to the same level and a class C style loft made from another section of bus roof. Finished to look like an old double decker. It had struts coming down from the front edge to the bumper/frame--NOT welded but done with urethane mounts like from a good suspension. Hopefully had a reinforced tube frame inside. It doesn't treasure much room or weight to make a STRONG truss frame if you can cut and weld angled pipe. Or know somebody that does.
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Old 09-28-2019, 09:18 PM   #30
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I lived in Eugene, Oregon, in the 1970ís so saw many skoolies with all sorts of roof modifications. Iíve done a extension on the front of a bus roof in 1995. I used wood and boat building epoxy and joinery. It seems like wood is out mostly for framing buses these days. Itís heavy anyway. Anyway I was worried about the posts on either side of the windshield and the windshield itself so I reinforced the posts down to the floor. My cantilever probably protruded too far. I donít think itís worth the effort. Like someone mentioned raising the rear creates extra space.
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Old 09-29-2019, 01:30 PM   #31
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Bed Lift

I've been planning to fabricate something like this above the driver compartment, following a full-length roof raise. If all you're looking for is sleeping space, this would save the work of fabbing a Class C-type overhead.
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:01 PM   #32
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I've been planning to fabricate something like this above the driver compartment, following a full-length roof raise. If all you're looking for is sleeping space, this would save the work of fabbing a Class C-type overhead.



That's a great idea.




I was thinking yesterday of raising the roof at the back of the bust 3 feet, and lowering the ceiling about 10". This would give me almost 4 feet of vertical space for the sleeping area.


The cieling would make me have to duck underneath, as it would be at about 5.5 feet and I am 6feet, but I could put my office back there, as well as the toilet area.



By mounting the bed across, I only have to worry about 60" of lowered ceiling in the back.


HOWEVER! With this idea, I can possibly mount the bed the front-to-back way, thus allowing more side room, and not needing to climb over each other. Since it lifts, it can be totally out of the way during day time, and lowered at night just enough to allow for both sit-up headroom in bed, and also use of the toilet and my office.
This is, of course, while still doing a roof raise.


Now I have to see how to do a partial roof raise. I have a friend visiting next week, for about a week, while I'm on break for that week. I was thinking maybe we could do the roof raise then!
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:26 PM   #33
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I lived in Eugene, Oregon, in the 1970’s so saw many skoolies with all sorts of roof modifications. I’ve done a extension on the front of a bus roof in 1995. I used wood and boat building epoxy and joinery. It seems like wood is out mostly for framing buses these days. It’s heavy anyway. Anyway I was worried about the posts on either side of the windshield and the windshield itself so I reinforced the posts down to the floor. My cantilever probably protruded too far. I don’t think it’s worth the effort. Like someone mentioned raising the rear creates extra space.
Folks out in the woods near Eugene been doin the skoolie thing a LONG time.
There were a few deadheads from out there who were my inspiration.
A guy named Thomas with a blue Wayne that had a chevy on the top.
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Old 10-07-2019, 04:02 PM   #34
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Had another idea:


Forget the partial roof raise, from above the windows, at the rear. Instead, maybe do a trolley-like roof raise at the back/center, to accommodate the bed lifting up.


The bed can then come down to still allow passing under it.


I'm trying to avoid too much structural tampering, having to make hat-channels, etc. With the center raise, like a trolly, I can first weld in steel tubing to the existing ribs, and then cut to raise that section-building the raised section: maybe 24".


Another option is to do the same center raised area, but make it telescope up and down, instead of the bed moving.



I'm racking my brains over this. Don't want to mess too much with the roof raising using jacks, the structural problems, and also wondering if insurance company would frown on a roof raise: even the trolley kind.
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Old 10-07-2019, 04:21 PM   #35
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Here's a better drawing of my idea. Not very engineer worthy, but then I am no engineer.


Please feel free to opine, or tell me this is unsafe if you really think it is.


Attachment 37807


pretty close to what l have in mind - a different process, but a similar result - l have a scoop from the front of a semi trailer van - 'thing is huge, 8' wide and at least 8' long, made from heavy duty fiberglass - it will have to be cut down because it stands at least 4' high - very aerodynamic looking - if I can fit it properly. it should be pretty sharp looking
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Old 10-07-2019, 05:24 PM   #36
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Folks out in the woods near Eugene been doin the skoolie thing a LONG time.
There were a few deadheads from out there who were my inspiration.
A guy named Thomas with a blue Wayne that had a chevy on the top.
Yep, the woods were full of funky buses around the Eugene and out in the Coast Range. I started my first bus conversion there at 20 years old but left it when it fell on my hand and crushed it. Took years of work but got most of the use of my hand back. Except the thumb tip that's missing. 13 years later did a complete conversion in Washington where I raised the roof and cantilevered the front and the back lofts. I only planned on short distance moves, no traveling, so didnít care how heavy it was. Iím not sure cantilevers are really worth doing imho. More into keep it simple the older I get. Give me 5 minutes and I forget however. I just finished a trolley style roof raise. Donít think Iíd do that over again either. Give me another 5 minutes haha.
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Old 10-07-2019, 08:44 PM   #37
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Just to play devil's advocate for a moment. A roof raise can be more susceptible to cross winds. It can change the center of gravity. And unless done properly can compromise the structural integrity of the original design. I'm not a fan of the look but I can totally understand why people do it. Just be mindful of the possible negative results of the changes you make. Know your finished height so you won't have any problems when stopping for fuel. Just some stuff to be aware of. Good luck and I hope it all comes together for you.
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:01 PM   #38
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Just to play devil's advocate for a moment. A roof raise can be more susceptible to cross winds. It can change the center of gravity. And unless done properly can compromise the structural integrity of the original design. I'm not a fan of the look but I can totally understand why people do it. Just be mindful of the possible negative results of the changes you make. Know your finished height so you won't have any problems when stopping for fuel. Just some stuff to be aware of. Good luck and I hope it all comes together for you.
THose are valid concerns- but if you keep it reasonable a sensible 6-10" raise won't change the way it drives/handles too much. I couldn't tell much difference after 10".
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Old 10-07-2019, 10:03 PM   #39
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I'm going back to possibly raising a center section of the roof like a trolley. This would be from just after the rear bulkhead to about 8' towards the front.
I'd like to do a 30" raise to that section.

The width would be about 62" to allow a queen bed.


This would also allow for keeping the ribbing pretty intact in the curved area, with a reinforced steel tubing frame/box around the cut.



So basically a steel framed box, 30" tall x 62" wide, x 8' long on top of the bus. I would use the old swing out doors, laid on their sides, as windows.



The bed would recess up there during the day and then, for sleeping, it would lower to just above the window level (at bottom of bed support), giving room to sit up in the loft while still having sitting down access to my office below. And maybe the toilet.


I like the idea of a steel tube framed box because I can build it, attach it to the bus, and then cut the opening and reinforce it more. Thinking the tubing can be something like 14 gauge or even 16 gauge?



Does this sound crazy?
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Old 10-07-2019, 10:18 PM   #40
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A crude representation of my idea:


IMG_0523a.jpg






Have also thought of this route:




IMG_0523b.jpg
But seems more trouble than its worth cutting it right and making it fit right, when I can build it on top. Also, I wouldn't keep the bus windows.
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