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Old 08-21-2020, 11:32 AM   #1
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Arrow ISO vintage Crown school bus

Hi! My husband and I are looking for a vintage Crown school bus. We are open to any year as long as it is in good working condition. Any leads would be so appreciated. Thanks in advance!

If you don't know of any crown busses that are available, we are open to other models as well but prefer that it be between 35' and 40'.
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Old 08-21-2020, 04:19 PM   #2
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look up a member named crown guy.
and for a crown you will most likely end up in cali.
and if you dont have mechanical knowledge and experience then you will need deep pockets.
i dont own one but thats what i have read.
there are some crown owners on here so hopefully this will bump you to them.
crown guy and inceni john are the most common.
good luck
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Old 08-22-2020, 06:14 PM   #3
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Those crown buses are sure cool looking. I wouldn't mind one either. They just have a timeless appeal.
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Old 08-22-2020, 08:58 PM   #4
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All you need for me is "Crown" anywhere in the thread title...I do check.
Yes, anything worth having, no rust for instance, will be from CA most likely.

At this time I know of only two possibilities for available Crowns. They are indeed both here in Southern California. One I haven't been able to contact the seller yet, and the other I know the seller very well. They are both 35ft two axle Crowns and if you'd like to contact me I can provide better details after I contact the seller(s?) again. I don't know much yet about each ones details, just general info, and that they are available. I will put you in direct touch with them and not try to carve out a commission or anything like that. The asking price(s) for each one is quite reasonable and something I haven't seen in quite a while.

My only concern is that the buyer be serious enough to actually want to acquire and save the Crown from a fate worse than death. I will offer my help and expertise if you want, to train you in how to take care of and drive a Crown so you can get the most out of it.

You may also want to contact me direct so we can exchange this info privately and I can answer any questions you may have regarding owning and operating a Crown. mikemcc2k@yahoo.com I'll then send you my phone number.

Take heart Crowns do come up for sale sporadically and with a little bit of patience you can find a good one at a reasonable price.....for a Crown. I can explain to you what that means. It's a good thing, really. But takes some explaining.

You'll find them being listed for $15K - 20K or more by some guys who are badly delusional. Please contact me if you happen to find one of these and find yourself tempted by one of the really high priced Crowns. I'll give you some guidance, and there's a chance I might even know that particular Crown and can be very specific about it's condition. They might even be worth that much IF the overall condition and mechanical components are in tip top repair.....but that's always the real question, isn't it. As for me I'd rather get one real cheap and repair it myself so I KNOW what's been done, rather than take anyone's word for what's been done to repair and rebuild a used, anything really.

Don't be in a hurry to jump on one, they are not always available but the tendency to go for the very first one found can be irresistible. There's good ones around still, and at reasonable prices, and in the long run it's worth it to find the best one you can.

A Crown isn't any harder or inherently more expensive to repair and maintain. They're merely different than any other common school bus design, but they aren't harder to maintain, easier in fact once you get the hang of them and how they're laid out. They are really simple and not complicated, and designed to be repaired as needed and kept on the road and in revenue service. They are built using true heavy duty highway truck drive-line and components which can be a little more expensive. But not always, and they are so common to find you can still get newly manufactured parts today for lots of things.

They are really strong and will take a huge amount of abuse before failing, I know this from the many fleets I've worked for and how badly they can be maintained sometimes, and still keep on running.

The really good thing is that once you ever have to repair something on a Crown you won't be able to put enough mileage on it, ever, to wear out what you repaired, as a private owner. They tend to stay fixed if you do it correctly the first time. They were designed, engineered and built to last for many decades in commercial service, and if you look around today you'll see lots of 50 year old Crowns that can look, and run/drive, as good as the day they were built. I should qualify that by saying, around here in Kalifornia anyway, where they still can be seen running around in the wild despite the best efforts of the various Kalifonia Gov't Air quality control freaks(I usually use another name for them). Outside of Kalifornia I understand they are kind of like Unicorns and just as rare to be seen or touched.

A Crown on the road outside of Kalifornia generates all kinds of interest from others who spot it. Whether driving along the highway or parked somewhere. They always attract enthusiastic and positive attention. All Crown owners are familiar with this phenomenon once leaving the West Coast States.

I always like to say that a well maintained Crown will Always manage to get you home safe and sound and will NOT leave you sitting on the side of the road somewhere in the Great American Wide Open Spaces. They are legendary for this.

Don't get me started on what they're like to drive. There just isn't any way to describe it without sounding like a religious zealot. Trust me that it's worth it and with all the new owners to Crowns now finding it out for themselves, you'll have many new friends you can contact besides me, and get their impressions of what it's like to own and drive the Rolls Royce of buses (all kinds, including highway coaches). So you won't have to take just my word for it.

All I can say is it's worth it. Check out some of my other posts on other threads where I go into much more details and you can get a feel for what makes the Crown a special vehicle. And be sure to contact me direct for more details, and info, and please let me know where you're located.
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Old 08-23-2020, 12:28 AM   #5
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Ahh.. so this was the thread you were telling me about earlier crown guy. I’m still working on trying to get that seller to respond to me for that 89 crown i was telling you about. There’s another crown i saw pop up on that site too but again, getting sellers to respond to inquiries is like getting 4 wheelers to use their turn signals when changing lanes.. near impossible ��
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Old 08-23-2020, 03:31 AM   #6
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But Crown_Guy, you *are* a religious zealot ... of the "All things Crown" sect!
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Old 08-23-2020, 04:43 AM   #7
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But Crown_Guy, you *are* a religious zealot ... of the "All things Crown" sect!
You sure got that right Little Grasshopper. And darn proud of it. Kind of hard not to be when steeped in it learning to drive commercially in Crowns, and then driving and owning them for 50+ years in both commercial and now private use. Growing on you is merely an understatement.

They are special for sure. New owners will eagerly confirm my feelings.

Have a good one.
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Old 08-23-2020, 11:06 AM   #8
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Hi! I came across a Crown for sale in Los Angeles yesterday. I'm not sure it'll be the right fit for you, but maybe it's worth a look!

Here's the link: 1977 Crown Bus.
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Old 08-23-2020, 12:16 PM   #9
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Hi! I came across a Crown for sale in Los Angeles yesterday. I'm not sure it'll be the right fit for you, but maybe it's worth a look!

Here's the link: 1977 Crown Bus.

Cool bus and I hope it finds a home.



I also hope the buyer documents the removal and destruction of those weird little Japanese anime stickers from around the speedo. Tweety Bird is ok.



Side question: do all Crowns show 11MPH parked like 1980s Chrysler K cars did?
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Old 08-23-2020, 03:58 PM   #10
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Cool bus and I hope it finds a home.



I also hope the buyer documents the removal and destruction of those weird little Japanese anime stickers from around the speedo. Tweety Bird is ok.



Side question: do all Crowns show 11MPH parked like 1980s Chrysler K cars did?
Electric speedos have a habit of popping around when the juice is cut and stopping where it pleases. Does it go to "0" when the key is on?
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Old 08-27-2020, 12:35 AM   #11
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Hello,
I have to say I too am into Crown Buses. I am currently posting the how to and progress on the conversion of my 86 Crown Supercoach. This is my second one and I still have the first one. It is true that they can be expensive to repair, if it is something major like engine replacement. I have to say that they are built like a tank though. A competent big truck mechanic can repair a Crown as they use components found on 18 wheeler tractors. Mine being an 86 model has not computers to run the engine. My 81 model came with ABS brakes, that probably used a simple computer. The ABS feature was disabled befor I got it, and I was told by a very knowledgeable mechanic to never re-enable them as there was problems with them. I have no experience with other makes of school buses so I cannot speak to how good they are. My 81 is not available at this time, but maybe in a year or two.
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Old 08-31-2020, 08:42 PM   #12
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crown

crown bus on govdeals.com its in san jose ca 257000 1989 single rear axel stick auction ends 9/11/20 most bidding occurs in last 5 minutes so don't chase the bid.current price about $1150.00
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Old 08-31-2020, 10:01 PM   #13
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There has been a 69 Crown for sale on Sac CL for..a while now at $6,000.
They do look nice with the curves, but c'mon its a school bus.



https://sacramento.craigslist.org/hv...166970280.html

When for $7500 you can get this 27ft motorhome with a whole 31,000 miles, not 447,000 miles..Do you want to go traveling or enter a parade?

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Old 08-31-2020, 10:20 PM   #14
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That's a sad looking RV there.

I'm going to do the old guy thing here. I looked at maybe half a dozen ten-wheel Crowns when they went to auction ten years ago here in Washington. That dual axle rear truck is quite the impressive hunk of metal. I started up a couple that had turbo'd 6-71's. Sweet!

What scared my off was the price of new tires, four more than a regular bus. They went for about $4k.
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Old 09-01-2020, 06:24 AM   #15
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There has been a 69 Crown for sale on Sac CL for..a while now at $6,000.
They do look nice with the curves, but c'mon its a school bus.



https://sacramento.craigslist.org/hv...166970280.html

When for $7500 you can get this 27ft motorhome with a whole 31,000 miles, not 447,000 miles..Do you want to go traveling or enter a parade?

You're kidding....Right. There's no comparison between that really sad looking sticks and staples RV versus any Crown. 400k on a Crown is merely getting it well broken in. All RV's have issues with leaks and mold growth. Not to mention less than sturdy construction or maybe even so-so engineering. Ever tried getting the parts for any RV more than a very few years old?? I've had friends give me the blow by blow of their trials in keeping their RV up and working, and it's not pretty at all, obsolete interior systems, proprietary components, wiring issues, bad designs and crappy construction. I've heard plenty of stories of brand new $100k RV's that break down, rattle terribly, are unsteady to drive on the road, you name it, many types of horror shows, built and meant for occasional weekend forays but usually spending most of their time in the driveway. Buying a used RV is much worse and just like wearing a Kick Me sign on your back. No Thanks.

Compare that to a Crown, which might have started life as "merely" a school bus, keep in mind Crown also made superb highway coaches and specialty customs all capable of more than 1 million miles of daily heavy commercial service just like a Class 8 heavy duty highway semi-tractor does.

That Cummins engine is an easy million mile engine and can be repaired to do it again if needed. That goes for all the systems, simple as they are on a Crown. No computers, pure mechanical old school designs and built to last for many decades of service. A Crown can be kept in good condition and once in top shape a private owner can't drive it enough to cause any repairs to be needed again on that component. That particular Crown looks rather scruffy and dirty, but it's all surface stuff and the body and interior roof and panels are in excellent condition. A good cleaning and even some repairs, which could get a little pricey, will have you possessing a vehicle to last for years with only routine maintenance and care. Possibly even costing less than the typical RV costs to repair. And before you ask you can still get parts today for everything on it since it's standard heavy duty truck equipment still made today. Can't do that with any RV I know of.

A Crown will most likely not leave you stranded on the side of the road and will get you home even if it needs attention. I've seen and experienced enough little road emergencies through the years to have confidence I can nurse a Crown home or to some safe haven with a few tools and a few key spares kept on board. I know for a fact you can't say that about most any RV of any brand, built as they are on minimal vehicular chassis of whatever design. Just not made for long years or many miles of regular use. All show and very little go.

To each his own and I always catch grief for my bias for Crowns, but I have years of experience and I've seen enough to know the other options aren't all that good. An RV is already built and you're stuck with what was put in it. Any bus conversion is up to you and the sweat equity you put in it is all on you and how well you design and execute it. Building on a solid foundation becomes important if you're serious about driving it much. For that nothing beats a Crown since no other school bus (except Gillig) is designed or built using such heavy materials and Heavy Duty components the way the Crown is made.

That's why they are so special and last so long. They were built to last decades, and they do it quite easily when you consider that Crown stopped production in 1991, meaning every Crown left in existence is at Least 29 years young. Compare that to any other mere school bus built on the usual medium duty local delivery truck chassis. And RV's are much worse being built on who knows what kind of light duty flaky custom chassis for RV use, not even commercial service levels. No comparison.

By the way, has anyone noticed that the original poster hasn't seemed to check back to get an answer to their questions??? Seems a little weird to me, especially if they were really serious about answers.

Oh Well. We've all got our buses already, Right?
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Old 09-01-2020, 01:28 PM   #16
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There has been a 69 Crown for sale on Sac CL for..a while now at $6,000.
They do look nice with the curves, but c'mon its a school bus.



https://sacramento.craigslist.org/hv...166970280.html

When for $7500 you can get this 27ft motorhome with a whole 31,000 miles, not 447,000 miles..Do you want to go traveling or enter a parade?

Wow, that's like trying to compare a 2020 Escalade to a 1889 Yugo.....

I have one of those $4000 dollar motor homes in my back yard... completely gutted after it's initial use as a moving van for my parents. All the RV stuff is now living in my Blue Bird as I make my skoolie out of the donor parts. That motor home is literally falling apart around it's self. If I could find and afford a 10 wheel Crown I would take that and build it over any traditional RV any day of the week!
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Old 09-01-2020, 02:40 PM   #17
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I hear it is pretty standard that it takes 1.5-2 years to sort all the issues with an RV when it's brand new. And doing so is like pulling teeth after it leaves the lot.
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Old 09-01-2020, 03:35 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by BeNimble View Post
There has been a 69 Crown for sale on Sac CL for..a while now at $6,000.
They do look nice with the curves, but c'mon its a school bus.



https://sacramento.craigslist.org/hv...166970280.html

When for $7500 you can get this 27ft motorhome with a whole 31,000 miles, not 447,000 miles..Do you want to go traveling or enter a parade?

I do both... I take my busses on long road trips and also go to car cruise-ins and parades...
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Old 09-01-2020, 05:21 PM   #19
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I hear it is pretty standard that it takes 1.5-2 years to sort all the issues with an RV when it's brand new. And doing so is like pulling teeth after it leaves the lot.
I bought a simple little pop-up camper rand new last year and it took over 4 months to get them to send me 3 simple parts that were missing when I bought it. Once they get the sale, they don't give two hoots about you or your problems!
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Old 09-01-2020, 06:37 PM   #20
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I agree there is no comparison here between a $6,000 old school bus and a ready-to-go motorhome. One is a huge project and probably gets 6mpg, and one has you camping at the Grand Canyon this week. The point was here is a Crown for $6k if that is your thing.
There is also a 72 Chevy Truck for $30k on CL, so when mine is done I will spread the koolaid that my truck is worth $50k. it has great curves. ;)

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