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Old 04-07-2021, 04:34 PM   #21
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
Location: Ohio
Posts: 112
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American
Engine: Cummins 8.3
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Originally Posted by WIbluebird View Post
Paid $4000 in August 2019 for my 2001 Blue Bird All American RE with the 8.3 Cummins ISC (315 hp variant) and Allison MD3066R (factory 6th gear unlocked variant with integrated retarder). Has full understorage, Transair factory AC (now removed). Tires were worn pretty bad.



Dash cluster is broken but mileage estimated to be around 200,xxx. Will know more when I get a BlueFire reader. Issues on the way from Colorado to Wisconsin were mainly limited to an alignment wearing down the inner edge of the steer tire. Front brake drum sticks after a month or so of sitting. Otherwise ran flawessly.
Call me dumb for asking but how do you find the hp of your ISC and if your(my) transmission has the integrated retarder? We have a 2004 All American Rear Engine ISC and Allison MD3060. I recently had 6th unlocked through our local Allison service center after 6 months of effort and I'm pretty sure they never want to see me or my bus ever again. Lol
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:38 PM   #22
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 488
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas x2
Chassis: HDX/MVP ER
Engine: CAT 3126 x2
422 (reasonable deal imo) - Paid $4000 for a 2001 Thomas HDX (Rear engined Pusher) with a 210HP CAT 3126 and MD3060 transmission. Picked it up from a reseller salvage yard that bought buses from all across the state and stored them in a field. 38 feet long with high roof. Has some minor rust, decent tires, had a busted radiator fan, and a staggering 6.25 rear end ratio. A year later I've finally fixed the fan and the root cause of why it broke, a radiator mount for around $600. Some comm wires gave out a few months ago and I ended up forking out $800 at the dealer because I couldn't track down where they broke. I've put maybe 4,000 miles on it so far, been pretty pleased. This bus will be for sale soon btw.

19 (Potential Steal) - 2001 Thomas 36' MVP RE (previous generation pusher to the HDX), bought sight unseen for $2,300 from South Carolina state surplus. 250 HP Cat 3126, MD3060, already configured to run 70mph, underbody passthrough luggage bays, AC, rust free, silicone heater hoses. 36 feet long and high roof. I took a somewhat educated guess, though still a large gamble, as this bus was the only one of a lot of 4 to not have a video walkaround. Threw a pair of batteries in and drove it 500 miles home. Needs some suspension work and tires, very leaky roof. In hindsight I feel I got very lucky, 99.9% of SC buses never make it to auction in one piece, let alone drivable condition.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:03 PM   #23
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Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Missoula, MT
Posts: 84
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Crown
Chassis: Supercoach
Engine: Detroit 6-71TA, Roadranger 10 sp.
Rated Cap: 90 gum-chewing demons
This thread is great. This is the kind of info that will really help people as they shop around.

First bus, purchased in 2008 for $500 - 1984 International S1700 8 window with V8 gas engine and a 5-speed manual (specifics are quite fuzzy at this point). Somewhere around 150k miles. Transmission was rough but drivable. Fuel line had a vacuum leak that I never fixed, so needed ether to start if it sat for more than 2 hours. Purchased from the whitewater rafting company where I worked. All in all, a good deal.

Current bus, purchased 2020 for $7500 - 1990 Crown Supercoach, 40' single rear axle with Detroit 6-71TA and Roadranger 10 speed. 146K miles and 9000 hours. Previous owner bought locally at auction, did some good maintenance, then re-sold to me. New turbo, new fluids and filters, tune up with experienced 2-stroke mechanic. Tires visually great, but will need replacing soon due to age. Drove home from Bakersfield, CA to Montana with no issues, 65mph the whole way. I don't feel like this was really a steal, but I'm definitely happy with the price.
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Old 04-07-2021, 10:52 PM   #24
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Year: 1998
Coachwork: Thomas
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Tejon7, thanks for posting. Lots of "steals" have been posted, but for this thread to really be helpful we need all the purchase prices, both good and bad. I'm guessing that a lot of people won't post if they are embarrassed about how much they paid.
Thanks to everyone that has posted so far.
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Old 04-08-2021, 12:32 AM   #25
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Location: Calgary, Alberta
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Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Engine: Cummins ISC 260HP/660Q/MD3060 6spd
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Yeah I agree we might see only good deals posted on here. I think mine was a pretty good deal, certainly was compared to the auctions... sometimes we get lucky and sometimes we don’t (my first bus was not lucky).

So I bought my 2001 Thomas MVP in 2018 for $3500 USD directly from the school district in Washington, came with almost all service records (there was a few years missing from their folder). It’s a full size 39 or 40 feet long, Cummins ISC 8.3 260 hp and MD3060 transmission with 5 gears at the time. Tires lasted 2 years before I had a blowout and changed them all but they looked like they should’ve lasted longer back then. 138,xxx miles were on it and engine hours were as best I can remember 9200. Oh and zero rust!

At the time of bringing it home I had to get a thorough govt inspection which said I needed a new charge air cooler outrageously $2000 CAD), rear brakes and drums (can’t remember cost) and a new abs module ($1200 CAD). Only the brakes and abs module were required by govt but I got the ridiculously priced charge air cooler to keep the engine going well. So maybe it wasn’t that good of a deal after all... it still has a front end vibration to this day which I think are the front wheel bearings. Hope to change them out before summer.
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Old 04-08-2021, 05:09 AM   #26
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Engine: Cummins ISC 260HP/660Q/MD3060 6spd
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It is pretty typical to have repairs like that and I think everybody should budget for a few things like that when buying an old used vehicle. My bus had passed the Washington state school bus inspection the month before I bought it so I really thought I was safe from most surprises.
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Old 04-08-2021, 07:05 AM   #27
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Year: 1996
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We feel like we paid a fair price for our bus. We've put about 10k miles on the bus in the last 2 years, most of it through the mountains, and been very happy with it.



1996 International 3800, 36', 250hp, DT466, MT643, electromagnetic retarder, air brakes


Purchased in 2017 from Gov't auction in the mountains of Colorado $4950 including fees
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Old 04-13-2021, 04:52 PM   #28
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Year: 1999
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Originally Posted by Bon Voyage View Post
Yeah I agree we might see only good deals posted on here...
Agreed. Still, if enough folks post their deals, patterns will emerge. I'm waiting for someone to post 'hey, I looked at the deal/steal/dud thread and have a follow-up question'...then we'll know it is helping newcomers with basic questions.
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Old 04-13-2021, 07:00 PM   #29
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Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 233
Year: 1980
Coachwork: Crown Coach
Chassis: Supercoach
Engine: Detroit 671T
I might have the most expensive purchase in this thread!

1980 Crown Supercoach, 35' with DD 671T and 5 speed stick

Bought in Oregon on April 12th 2019 for $8000 and drove it back to RI over the following week. I feel like I got a decent deal on it as the few Crowns I have seen for sale since have been listed for in some cases double what I paid.
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Old 04-13-2021, 07:37 PM   #30
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Northern California (Sacramento)
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Year: 1999
Chassis: Ford E450
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Originally Posted by Willie_McCoy View Post
I might have the most expensive purchase in this thread!

1980 Crown Supercoach, 35' with DD 671T and 5 speed stick

Bought in Oregon on April 12th 2019 for $8000 and drove it back to RI over the following week. I feel like I got a decent deal on it as the few Crowns I have seen for sale since have been listed for in some cases double what I paid.
And that is one sweet ride. Conversion work rivals all the others as well. Almost a work of art.

SWEET DEAL!
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Old 04-13-2021, 07:43 PM   #31
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Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Missoula, MT
Posts: 84
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Crown
Chassis: Supercoach
Engine: Detroit 6-71TA, Roadranger 10 sp.
Rated Cap: 90 gum-chewing demons
Quote:
Originally Posted by Willie_McCoy View Post
I might have the most expensive purchase in this thread!

1980 Crown Supercoach, 35' with DD 671T and 5 speed stick

Bought in Oregon on April 12th 2019 for $8000 and drove it back to RI over the following week. I feel like I got a decent deal on it as the few Crowns I have seen for sale since have been listed for in some cases double what I paid.
Seems like a good deal to me also, but I'm biased

I think the rarer the bus, the more useful this info will be for prospective buyers. As you said, there are some crazy high priced Crowns out there, and people may assume they're ALL $20k.

I'd love to see what a Flxible in decent shape actually costs.
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Old 04-15-2021, 06:29 PM   #32
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Year: 1992
Coachwork: Carpenter
Engine: DT466
Rated Cap: 66
1993 International DT466 w/ Carpenter body. Seller did not know which transmission. When I crawled underneath and saw it was a MT643, I FELT like I had stolen it for the price of $5500. Pretty good deal for California, plus it was kept garaged and maintained by school district (including the $19000 emissions "upgrade" ) and the brand new tires had 20 miles on them. A dealer had called after me and told the seller he was going to price it for resale at $20,000. She was glad to sell it to a nice weird family like us instead.
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Old 04-15-2021, 09:28 PM   #33
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Posts: 5,009
Year: 2003
Coachwork: International
Chassis: CE 300
Engine: DT466e
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1993 International DT466 w/ Carpenter body. Seller did not know which transmission. When I crawled underneath and saw it was a MT643, I FELT like I had stolen it for the price of $5500. Pretty good deal for California, plus it was kept garaged and maintained by school district (including the $19000 emissions "upgrade" ) and the brand new tires had 20 miles on them. A dealer had called after me and told the seller he was going to price it for resale at $20,000. She was glad to sell it to a nice weird family like us instead.
You may have seen this already: https://icsw.nhtsa.gov/people/injury.../carpenterbus/

Long story short if the bus was built in Richmond, Indiana you're fine, if it was built in Mitchell it might be good to get the roof welds checked out. Or just don't roll the bus ever.

I think you did steal that bus! Some people would kill for that transmission and a mechanical DT466. Nice find.
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Old 04-16-2021, 09:01 AM   #34
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Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 1,122
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American
Engine: 8.3 Cummins ISC
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Originally Posted by aswallie View Post
Call me dumb for asking but how do you find the hp of your ISC and if your(my) transmission has the integrated retarder? We have a 2004 All American Rear Engine ISC and Allison MD3060. I recently had 6th unlocked through our local Allison service center after 6 months of effort and I'm pretty sure they never want to see me or my bus ever again. Lol
If you can get the serial number on the transmission you can check it on the Allison website. There is also a small joystick to the left of the steering wheel that you can look for as well.

A lot of people have stated that it isn't a good idea to use that integrated transmission retarder a lot as it tends to heat up the transmission fluid and put added strain on it.

As for the HP rating that can be determined from looking at the black sticker on the engine block, typically near one of the idler pulleys.
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Old 04-16-2021, 09:48 AM   #35
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Posts: 112
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American
Engine: Cummins 8.3
Quote:
Originally Posted by WIbluebird View Post
If you can get the serial number on the transmission you can check it on the Allison website. There is also a small joystick to the left of the steering wheel that you can look for as well.



A lot of people have stated that it isn't a good idea to use that integrated transmission retarder a lot as it tends to heat up the transmission fluid and put added strain on it.



As for the HP rating that can be determined from looking at the black sticker on the engine block, typically near one of the idler pulleys.
I'll check my transmission on the site but I'm not sure I'm going to have success with the plate on my engine. https://imgur.com/a/TRPRwHa
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Old 04-16-2021, 09:56 AM   #36
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I'll check my transmission on the site but I'm not sure I'm going to have success with the plate on my engine. https://imgur.com/a/TRPRwHa
Should be just to the right of that picture. In that information table should be the HP level that the engine is set at. It looks covered in debris so I can't say for sure.
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Old 04-16-2021, 11:15 AM   #37
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Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Posts: 350
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Thomas
Engine: Cummins ISC 260HP/660Q/MD3060 6spd
Rated Cap: 81
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Originally Posted by aswallie View Post
I'll check my transmission on the site but I'm not sure I'm going to have success with the plate on my engine. https://imgur.com/a/TRPRwHa
I circled in this photo where on the plate your horsepower would be printed but yours is pretty messed up there. The second is a picture of mine ISC 260 at the top. In case that helps you see yours - in person you might be able to make it out.

You could also contact Cummins with the engine number and they can give you the specs on your engine.
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Old 04-16-2021, 11:16 AM   #38
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Here they are
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Old 04-16-2021, 11:32 AM   #39
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Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: Northern CA
Posts: 5
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Carpenter
Engine: DT466
Rated Cap: 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by musigenesis View Post
You may have seen this already: https://icsw.nhtsa.gov/people/injury.../carpenterbus/

Long story short if the bus was built in Richmond, Indiana you're fine, if it was built in Mitchell it might be good to get the roof welds checked out. Or just don't roll the bus ever.
It's a Mitchell, and I can't find anything in the service records that says the welds were inspected or repaired. We will take a look for sure when we pull the ceiling panels.

I knew about that issue going in and still think it's a lot safer than any stick and staple RV.

You're saying DON'T roll it? Ever? Huh, OK. Once again this forum comes though with invaluable advice.
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