View Poll Results: What kind of mileage do you get?
3-5 with Gas 13 3.30%
5-7 with Gas 37 9.39%
7-10 with Gas 39 9.90%
10+ with Gas 17 4.31%
3-5 with Diesel 2 0.51%
5-7 with Diesel 23 5.84%
7-10 with Diesel 142 36.04%
10+ with Diesel 121 30.71%
Voters: 394. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-12-2018, 11:35 PM   #141
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I plan on getting a short bus...what would give me the best gas mileage? I've read that diesel engines run/last longer too. Would you say that's accurate? And is it hard to find gas stations with diesel pumps in remote places?
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Old 07-13-2018, 02:19 AM   #142
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Originally Posted by gypsyfiredance View Post
I plan on getting a short bus...what would give me the best gas mileage? I've read that diesel engines run/last longer too. Would you say that's accurate? And is it hard to find gas stations with diesel pumps in remote places?
If when you say you are planning on getting a short bus, if you mean a Type 'A' bus with either a Ford or GM cutaway chassis then the best power package is the Chevy/GMC G-3500/4500 with the 6.0L gas V-8 with the 6L80 transmission. In service they typically get 11-13 MPG. The next best choice is the Ford E-350/450 with the 7.3L diesel V-8. In service they typically get 12-14 MPG.

Very few Type 'A' buses delivered with the Duramax V-8 in a GM chassis as it is fairly uncommon to find one.

Newer Fords with the 6.0L diesel V-8 are not a good choice. Even when you go through them and "fix" the problems it doesn't necessarily stay fixed. There are some buses with Ford chassis that came with the V-10. When they run they are not a bad engine. But they do have issues and working on one in a van chassis is a real PITA. Older Fords with the 460 gas V-8 have a lot of go but think in terms of 4-6 MPG.

It is best to stay away from the buses that have the smaller engines. They are all capable but in a bus, even a short bus, the smaller engines have to work really hard to get the job done and generally don't get as good fuel mileage.
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Old 07-13-2018, 12:21 PM   #143
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Location: Boise, ID
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Year: 1991
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: International 3700
Engine: International 7.3L
Rated Cap: 44 passenger
1991 International Amtran 44 passenger DT444 AT545

I get 10 to 11 MPG on relatively flat ground. Way less in the mountains!
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Old 07-13-2018, 03:44 PM   #144
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach View Post
If when you say you are planning on getting a short bus, if you mean a Type 'A' bus with either a Ford or GM cutaway chassis then the best power package is the Chevy/GMC G-3500/4500 with the 6.0L gas V-8 with the 6L80 transmission. In service they typically get 11-13 MPG. The next best choice is the Ford E-350/450 with the 7.3L diesel V-8. In service they typically get 12-14 MPG.

Very few Type 'A' buses delivered with the Duramax V-8 in a GM chassis as it is fairly uncommon to find one.

Newer Fords with the 6.0L diesel V-8 are not a good choice. Even when you go through them and "fix" the problems it doesn't necessarily stay fixed. There are some buses with Ford chassis that came with the V-10. When they run they are not a bad engine. But they do have issues and working on one in a van chassis is a real PITA. Older Fords with the 460 gas V-8 have a lot of go but think in terms of 4-6 MPG.

It is best to stay away from the buses that have the smaller engines. They are all capable but in a bus, even a short bus, the smaller engines have to work really hard to get the job done and generally don't get as good fuel mileage.
So much good info to digest. I needed a good starting point for starting my bus search. Are there any particular years that are better than others. I've read and seen in a few videos that anything after 2003 is crap when changes were supposedly made.
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Old 07-16-2018, 06:25 PM   #145
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2007 chevy 4500 shuttle bus, 6.6 duramax diesel, I get 11-14 mpg.
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Old 07-20-2018, 09:35 AM   #146
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Year: 1986
Coachwork: Gillig Bros.
Chassis: Phantom
Engine: CAT 3208TA 10.4L
Rated Cap: 87
My Gillig Phantom 40-footer gets 7~8 on the highway. Way less in-town, of course. CAT 3208TA diesel.
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Old 07-20-2018, 10:25 AM   #147
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Originally Posted by gypsyfiredance View Post
So much good info to digest. I needed a good starting point for starting my bus search. Are there any particular years that are better than others. I've read and seen in a few videos that anything after 2003 is crap when changes were supposedly made.
Almost all pre-2000 are non-electronically controlled. Electronic controls can have problems that can be difficult to diagnose if you get a gremlin. The electronics also create a parasitic drain on your batteries unless you install a total battery shutoff.

2007 was the first year for the smog equipment. The smog equipment turned relatively reliable engines into garage queens. It turned other engines into disasters waiting to happen.
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Old 07-20-2018, 10:33 AM   #148
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Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
Quote:
Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach View Post
Almost all pre-2000 are non-electronically controlled. Electronic controls can have problems that can be difficult to diagnose if you get a gremlin. The electronics also create a parasitic drain on your batteries unless you install a total battery shutoff.

2007 was the first year for the smog equipment. The smog equipment turned relatively reliable engines into garage queens. It turned other engines into disasters waiting to happen.

Navistar released the T-444E in 1994 which is fully electronic.
the DT-466E was released in 1995.



Caterpillar started releasing electronic engines around the same time.



fully mechanical busses are getting much harder to come by these days.. the Exporters usually jump-on and bid these busses up on the major auctions.. or they are from up nort hand are rusty..



you can find them if you want them.. just have to be patient..



personally the electronic engines dont scare me.. full oin smog / emissions of 2007+ are a bit scary still because broken emissions equipment from the early years could physically damage / destroy the engine
-Christopher
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Old 08-07-2018, 04:01 PM   #149
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I consistently get 12-13mpg(Canadian) and I drive 100-105kms at 25-2700rpm. 8.2 turbo/5spd manual and rear ended all matched out of a dump truck. Rear is 5.67 or something like that. I burn furnace oil, filtered veg oil, had fluid, heck anything I can get my hands on that is clean. Yes, been a heavy diesel mechanic for 32 years so I have heard all the "omgosh!" Lol.
Don't lug below 1700 and don't rev above 2700( I know it's governed at 3000 but I like mpg more than mph.

I would like a 13spd or a splitter, something to reduce the 1000rpm spread between 5 and 4.

Yes I love the old girl.
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Old 08-20-2018, 05:29 PM   #150
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Year: 1999
Chassis: E350
Engine: 7.3 turbo diesel
Just purchased my 1999 E350 shorty with the 7.3 turbo diesel. Headed from Atlanta to Arizona..about 2 k miles. I have no clue but guessing 5 to 8 mpg..not being a math guy. I'm thinking close to 600 bucks in fuel alone.
Am I even close ??
Appreciate it !! I have a 2 k emergency fund. Not much but time ran out on me. Doing the best I can..Around 30 days and I'm hitting the road.
See ya'll on the other side !
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Old 08-20-2018, 05:49 PM   #151
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Year: 1999
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Engine: DT466/3060
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoggerTheNomad View Post
Just purchased my 1999 E350 shorty with the 7.3 turbo diesel. Headed from Atlanta to Arizona..about 2 k miles. I have no clue but guessing 5 to 8 mpg..not being a math guy. I'm thinking close to 600 bucks in fuel alone.
Am I even close ??
Appreciate it !! I have a 2 k emergency fund. Not much but time ran out on me. Doing the best I can..Around 30 days and I'm hitting the road.
See ya'll on the other side !
With diesel right around $3 you're looking at $750 at 8mpg and $1200 at 5mpg. I spent near $1500 bringing my bus back from Seattle to Atl., 7mpg at 80mph, 8.9mpg at 70mph, average over 50 gallons.
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Old 08-20-2018, 06:09 PM   #152
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Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas / international
Chassis: International
Engine: Dt 360/ spicer 5 speed
Rated Cap: 42
Think I posted here before but I get 9mpg @63 mph going up and down all the biggest passes on the I5 and 10 conservative driving @55mph. 28' international dt360 Spicer 5speed. 15k+/- lbs curbweight
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Old 08-20-2018, 06:54 PM   #153
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Year: 1999
Chassis: E350
Engine: 7.3 turbo diesel
Okay then, my bus is short..and I plan on 55-60 mph. However I will be traveling with some weight.
Sounds like its gonna cost me more than I thought..
I really appreciate your comments !
Must sell more stuff !!!
Big Green Egg ..gone
Big Craftsman double decker tool box..gone
Ridding lawn tractor and all other back pack blower etc...gone
thanks again !!
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Old 08-20-2018, 07:21 PM   #154
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Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Alberta
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Year: 2001
Coachwork: Corbeil
Chassis: e350 SD
Engine: 7.3
Rated Cap: 18
My E350 7.3 SRW gets 15mpg at 60mph , 13mpg at 65mph , and 11.5mpg at 70mph. I would expect the duel rear wheels to be less but holds more weight.
Conversion done in US gallons not imperial.
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Old 08-20-2018, 07:36 PM   #155
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
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George, same srw here, I am right there with your numbers, do you have a 4.1 or 3.55 in the rear Mine has 4.1. We have a e350 7.3 4x4 with 3.55 and that gets about 16 to 19mpg. it is an extended van.


later J
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Old 08-20-2018, 08:04 PM   #156
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Year: 2001
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Joe,
I have the 4.10 , I understand thatís the only rear end they put in the cutaways. I think if the fella drives his cutaway nice and easy he will pay a lot less for fuel than he thinks.
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Old 08-20-2018, 08:11 PM   #157
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George, I think you are right, I often wonder if I should change the 4.10 to a 3.55 to gain some mpg. May be throw in a locker at the same time. What is your interior height. You think a 3.55 could pull enough?
later J
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Old 08-20-2018, 08:17 PM   #158
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I had three Ford E-350 buses with the 7.3L/E4OD power package. They had the 4.56 rear gears.

Over about 150,000 miles the three buses averaged 11-13 MPG.
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Old 08-20-2018, 08:45 PM   #159
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Year: 2001
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Engine: 7.3
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Joe
The interior height is about 5í10Ē and not the best as I am 6í2Ē.
However , for our purposes the bus is perfect as We only camp a couple of weekends a year but travel a couple of months alternating between hotels and parking lots. Itís nice to have a big bed , port a potty , stove and sink , and couch but still be able to use a single parking space anywhere ... including a cruise ship terminal !
Personally I would not bother with a rear end change as this little bus is a rocket when I need it to be , handles the Rocky Mountains like a champ , and when driven really lightly on the prairies with light traffic probably could get 17mpg.

Cowltz , according to my owners manual for 2001 , the dual rear wheels had your gearing .... did you have srw on those buses. Also , my bus mpg goes way down in stop and go traffic .
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Old 08-21-2018, 10:09 AM   #160
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[QUOTE.

Cowltz , according to my owners manual for 2001 , the dual rear wheels had your gearing .... did you have srw on those buses. Also , my bus mpg goes way down in stop and go traffic .[/QUOTE]

Two were 1990 models and one was a 1994.

All were dual rear wheel models.

The 1994 was one row longer than the 1990 ones.

The 1990 models had 11,900 GVWR's and the 1994 had 13,900 GVWR. Outside of the longer wheelbase I never could determine what was different between them to warrant a higher GVWR. The front and rear brakes used the same parts, the springs had the same number of leaves, the axles used the same bearings, and the power package appeared to be identical.

The 1994 had a different body that wasn't quite as square, as in a little more aerodynamic. It consistently got 1 MPG better than the other two.

With the 4.56 gears top speed was about 70 MPH with the throttle to the wall. Even still, on any sort of hill with a load it was dropping out of OD and even into 2nd if the hill was steep enough and the load was big enough.
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