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Old 07-29-2018, 02:47 PM   #21
Bus Geek
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
Posts: 19,128
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
I joined this site in what 2009? and I still have a bus converted.. but then I just like driving around in them way too much to ever take one off the road long enough to convert it..

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Old 07-29-2018, 03:26 PM   #22
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Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
Posts: 10,482
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Genesis
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466/3060
Rated Cap: 77
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
I joined this site in what 2009? and I still have a bus converted.. but then I just like driving around in them way too much to ever take one off the road long enough to convert it..
Read your first sentence.
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Old 07-30-2018, 05:38 AM   #23
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Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by navonifamily View Post
What we are doing now is planing out our electrical systems, water, waste, fuel sources, storage, ect. All now on paper.
Exactly what I am working on now as well. I have developed a very simple model and am able to manipulate thinks like beds, couches, the kitchen... Now I am on to sketching out electrical and plumbing.
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Old 07-30-2018, 05:57 PM   #24
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 386
Originally Posted by CoachKip View Post
Yes, I am sure that is going to take the longest for me. Since we have a long run up (December or January for Bus purchase) we are doing as much preplanning as possible. Ultimately we are only planning on fresh water and gray water for the kitchen sink and the shower. We will be using a composting toilet so no need for black tank.

Electrical is what I am really concerned about. How do I plan on what wires to run and where. We would love solar, but maybe not before summer. Do I prewire in anticipation of a 24v and 110v system? Or do I just redo it all at a later date?
If your planning on a generator consider adding a transfer box. I'm going that route and also a power distribution panel including a converter for coach battery charging. If you start with those you can add circuits as you need them.
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Old 08-04-2018, 03:48 PM   #25
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Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Texas
Posts: 7
Year: 2000
Coachwork: BlueBird
Rated Cap: 28,000
It took me fulltime from Feb to Sept to get the bus livable and by livable I mean no toilet, and no running water until after we sold our house and moved in. I worked on it at least 4 days a week, all day until I couldnít move. I also had help from my grown kids.

If youíre motivated and know a lot of stuff already ... youl can do anything. I was YouTubing as I was building as Iím a firearms instructor by day ... not a carpenter or plumber LOL

Best of luck!
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Old 08-04-2018, 03:52 PM   #26
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Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Texas
Posts: 7
Year: 2000
Coachwork: BlueBird
Rated Cap: 28,000
Originally Posted by karrlot View Post
Who the hell knows? Today I spent five hours and three trips to two auto parts stores to change my turn signal bulb.
Haha Iím totally dying here! Itís never one trip or one store is it?? Took just as many for me to find a 45į brass angle to reconnect the heater hoses 🙄
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Old 08-04-2018, 04:37 PM   #27
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Join Date: Nov 2017
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Where are you located? I may be able to help.
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Old 08-04-2018, 05:00 PM   #28
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Join Date: Dec 2015
Posts: 7
I purchased my bus in January 2016 while still working full time job. Worked on bus daily starting Feb for 4-6 hours a night all day weekends. Quit my job mid May worked on it for 12 hrs a day till Aug 9 left on cross country road trip from Fla to Wa state Aug 11. Put 12,575 miles on bus and had a blast. The thing is my bus was in great shape so only had to paint it. The inside has solid wood floors, cabinets, black walnut countertop I sanded until you could see your reflection. Will post photos soon
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Old 08-04-2018, 05:02 PM   #29
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Join Date: May 2017
Location: GA
Posts: 48
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International
Engine: T444e v8 turbo
Rated Cap: was 72, now 3
Exclamation I logged every activity and time spent...

and have worked 931hr in 15 months, excluding shopping and planning. So add 10hr/wk x 65 wks = 650hr ? No kids involved in my 1600hrs.

I could live in it. To be brief, I painted two coats outside, removed all seats, added insulation to the walls and ceiling, included: a sofa bed, 7 cabinets, plumbing, extensive DC and AC wiring, solar, wood stove, fresh and grey water,... Still have to do front door, ceiling, interior painting, and flooring.

With 45yrs experince as a project manager, housebuilder, handyman and auto restorer, I scream everything will take MUCH longer than you think! Nothing comes square... and a level is useless. Everything is dirty, bionasty, and a lot of buses seem to have a lot of rust.

Fortunately my bus was structurally fine, some guys spent over 100hr on the rusty floor!

I am wondering if ... 400 hours roughly... We want to involve our kids as much as possible so that will slow things down.
Has anyone kept track of hours on their build? [QUOTE]

estimates for what you want AND MAY HAVE TO DO
may sound nuts ... who knows? none until done!
remove seats and metal baseboard 20-30hr
repair floor? 50hr
insulate & plywood floor? 20hr
insulate & plywood walls? 30hr
insulate & plywood ceiling? 30hr
wiring 20hr [i spent 100]
plumbing 20hr
a raised queen bed with storage underneath. 10hr
Two twin size beds... 20hr
A small bathroom with composting toilet. 20hr
Small kitchen with single sink & hot plate. 20hr
a couch folding into a bed... 10hr
keep the first row of bus seats 0 and great for children.
painting to be legal, includes prep 30hr
TOTAL OF ABOVE = 180 to 310 hrs
If there is time...
a fresh and gray water tank, 40hr
storage under the bus, cut side, welding, 20hr /box
solar power 5hr / 100W
GRAND TOTAL = 300 to 500 hrs
adding 50% is advisable!
you didnt ask about cost so you must be richly rich. i have spent $15k on materials and used my tools worth $500.
"Someone tell me this is doable..." you decide
PS in case you are tempted, i wouldnt buy a converted bus, even from a conversion company.
"I don't think the build will be too difficult."
No build thread but pictures and text are at
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:12 PM   #30
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: So Cal
Posts: 9
Wow! I think youíve done amazingly well considering the unforeseen medical issues!!
I had to hire a contractor as Iím a little old retired teacher who doesnít have the skills to convert a bus!! Heís a dream builder for me and I am as excited as an expectant mama!😄
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Old 08-04-2018, 10:31 PM   #31
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Join Date: Feb 2018
Location: Raleigh nc
Posts: 86
I work at least 60 hours a week with two days off I have friends that have helped a lot along the way and itís been 5 months and Iím only 75 % done, whith working on it all the spare time I have itís only a 5 window bus.
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Old 08-07-2018, 08:52 AM   #32
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: mid Mo.
Posts: 916
Year: 1976
Coachwork: bluebird
Chassis: F33695
Engine: 427 chevy converted to 466
Rated Cap: 84
I am a professional welder and machinist and my girlfriend and I spent a whole year, every weekend except 2 holidays, 2-4 weeknights working out of a fully complimented shop, it will take a lot longer than you think but then it depends on the quality of the work and how high you stack your ambitions, you will be proud as a Peacock when you get it done. Sportyrick
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