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Old 02-22-2021, 04:03 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Dec 2020
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 153
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT466 / MD3060
WTB - one month deep - some thoughts on the buying process?

Skoolie Fam!
Located in Las Vegas, NV - We're looking to buy a 6 - 8 window skoolie, and trying to hold out for the "chose one" DT466e with a dog-nose (for easy engine access)

I've been following this forum and have a huge list of bus yards / auctions but still haven't found anything with the right specs that is close enough to drive home (especially during the winter months, not too excited about 1200+mi drive home, no CDL)

We're somewhat flexible, and willing to make some sacrifices (hence the 6 - 8 window size). I'm open to pushers, though my wife REALLY wants a garage. Hell, for the right bus I'd even take a FE and invest in some fancy ear-muffs.

I come to you with open arms: is anyone selling?

Q: What are some of your 1st, 2nd, 3rd choice engines out there?

Q: How long did it take before y'all found your bus?

Q: How far did you drive / how far would you drive?

We've got another month or two in us before we get "desperate" - but wouldn't we all love to get started RIGHT NOW!!

Thank you all for your infinite wisdom - I appreciate your time!

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Old 02-22-2021, 04:32 PM   #2
Traveling
 
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Welcome. You might check out the threads linked in my sig, some have said they should be required reading, some have even said it has saved them from bad decisions. You can find other posts I and other members have made by clicking the member name on their post, then clicking "See all posts" or "See all threads" from the "Statistics" tab. And feel free to ask questions about any potential candidate. The pre-purchase phase is all about research and learning. Good luck!
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Old 02-22-2021, 04:54 PM   #3
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Taylor Lake Village, TX
Posts: 234
Year: 1994
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT408 6.7L L6
Rated Cap: 14
Almost sounds like my bus. Except I got the DT408. Personally I didn't even want the E at the end of the DT..., So I aimed for pre-95. Found a 408 that met all my other requirements. For a small bus this size, I'd have accepted a DT360, or even a 12v 6B5.9. But the DT466 (non-E) and DT408 top the list. I shopped/researched for about a year, and drove about 200 miles to get my bus and paid $2600 at auction.

If Texas buses are ok with you, www.ReneBates.com has the most buses for auction in the state. Others include www.OnlinePros.com, www.LSO.cc, and www.PurpleWave.com

Happy Hunting
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Old 03-03-2021, 04:43 PM   #4
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Year: 1986
Coachwork: Crown Super Coach
Chassis: Built on a Crown Chassis
Engine: 300HP BIG CAM TURBO 855
Rated Cap: 78
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Gerschafer View Post
Skoolie Fam!
Located in Las Vegas, NV - We're looking to buy a 6 - 8 window skoolie, and trying to hold out for the "chose one" DT466e with a dog-nose (for easy engine access)

I've been following this forum and have a huge list of bus yards / auctions but still haven't found anything with the right specs that is close enough to drive home (especially during the winter months, not too excited about 1200+mi drive home, no CDL)

We're somewhat flexible, and willing to make some sacrifices (hence the 6 - 8 window size). I'm open to pushers, though my wife REALLY wants a garage. Hell, for the right bus I'd even take a FE and invest in some fancy ear-muffs.

I come to you with open arms: is anyone selling?

Q: What are some of your 1st, 2nd, 3rd choice engines out there?

Q: How long did it take before y'all found your bus?

Q: How far did you drive / how far would you drive?

We've got another month or two in us before we get "desperate" - but wouldn't we all love to get started RIGHT NOW!!

Thank you all for your infinite wisdom - I appreciate your time!
Having trouble following. Said your preference was a "dog nose" (conventional)
Then you'd be happy "with a pusher" then you refer to the "DT66E"...
So seemed like your intent was to convey precisely what you wanted and it then became most anything. So I saw this Arizona bus last night. It's a 97 so I hoped it would not be an "E" anything. But it was a T444e. Not Mine. Guy wants 9K...
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Old 03-03-2021, 05:20 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by mokibrabrant View Post
So I saw this Arizona bus last night.
From the looks of the photo, if it was taken near its home, that might be in my neck of the woods. To the OP, if you find out it's near Flagstaff, I'd be happy to look at it with you...or even put eyes on it for you as a pre-screen, but LV is close enough that it would be an easy trip for you.
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Old 03-03-2021, 07:00 PM   #6
Bus Nut
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
From the looks of the photo, if it was taken near its home, that might be in my neck of the woods. To the OP, if you find out it's near Flagstaff, I'd be happy to look at it with you...or even put eyes on it for you as a pre-screen, but LV is close enough that it would be an easy trip for you.


My bad. It is a bus originally from Arizona. But is currently located in the PNW.
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Old 03-03-2021, 07:53 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by mokibrabrant View Post
My bad. It is a bus originally from Arizona. But is currently located in the PNW.
No worries...one less thing I need to do! But being an AZ bus bodes well for the OP, if they look at it.
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Old 03-03-2021, 08:00 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by rossvtaylor View Post
No worries...one less thing I need to do! But being an AZ bus bodes well for the OP, if they look at it.
I wouldn't bet on that either. Not as likely to have rust maybe, but does not guarantee perfection. Ask me how I know.
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Old 03-03-2021, 08:29 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by CHEESE_WAGON View Post
I wouldn't bet on that either. Not as likely to have rust maybe, but does not guarantee perfection. Ask me how I know.
True...I was thinking of rust. But yes, there are lots of things to go potentially wrong. I think I've read how you know! You definitely have enough stories for a book, sir.
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Old 03-03-2021, 09:00 PM   #10
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Dec 2020
Location: Las Vegas, NV
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Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT466 / MD3060
You're all amazing! Good looking out!
@rossvtaylor I may take you up on that sometime - we've had our eye on busses in AZ

@moki you pretty much summed it up:
We began the bus hunt with a VERY specific engine / model in mind, and have since relaxed a bit due to the bus shortage.
I'm realizing that the engine & length we are looking for is the unicorn that everyone else is after as well. If we can find a reliable rig within our size, we'll be happy campers.

Do you have the link to the sale you mentioned?

Engine reliability is our main concern - I'm pretty savvy but not a mechanic.
Size is our second hang up: we're looking for less than 30feet - we don't want a behemoth on the road.
I suppose the distance of the sale is the last issue - any viable bus I've found so far is 1500+ miles away.

I really appreciate everyone's input - I wouldn't have made it this far without y'all!
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Old 03-03-2021, 09:28 PM   #11
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https://inlandempire.craigslist.org/...285934673.html
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Old 03-03-2021, 11:43 PM   #12
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Dec 2020
Location: Las Vegas, NV
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Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT466 / MD3060
@desmoines
Thank you! I was JUST looking at that bus and sent an inquiry into the owner for engine hours, engine and trans specs, etc.

What do you all think of the higher miles? 360k? I'll repost when I get some more info, hopefully the engine hours.
Looks like maybe DT444e? 7.3, blue engine? (please correct me if I'm wrong, i have no idea what I'm talking about )

Thanks for the shout out! as noted, I'll keep y'all posted if i get any more info on this one.
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:56 AM   #13
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Gerschafer View Post
@desmoines
Thank you! I was JUST looking at that bus and sent an inquiry into the owner for engine hours, engine and trans specs, etc.

What do you all think of the higher miles? 360k? I'll repost when I get some more info, hopefully the engine hours.
Looks like maybe DT444e? 7.3, blue engine? (please correct me if I'm wrong, i have no idea what I'm talking about )

Thanks for the shout out! as noted, I'll keep y'all posted if i get any more info on this one.
Is that an AC system by the rear door?
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Old 03-09-2021, 10:59 AM   #14
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Taylor Lake Village, TX
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Year: 1994
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Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT408 6.7L L6
Rated Cap: 14
If you hurry you can get one... There's (5) DT466E 8 window buses. AUCTION ENDING SOON!!! Lots 30-34

https://www.onlinepros.com/auctions/...xX0zDD6zyMva6o
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Old 03-09-2021, 12:45 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djdalfaro View Post
If you hurry you can get one... There's (5) DT466E 8 window buses. AUCTION ENDING SOON!!! Lots 30-34

https://www.onlinepros.com/auctions/...xX0zDD6zyMva6o
Lol "rust". Texans apparently have no idea what that is.
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Old 03-09-2021, 01:43 PM   #16
Skoolie
 
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Year: 1994
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Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT408 6.7L L6
Rated Cap: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by musigenesis View Post
Lol "rust". Texans apparently have no idea what that is.
Nope... These were good buses. The shorties sold for 4-5k.
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Old 03-09-2021, 09:03 PM   #17
Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Dec 2020
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 153
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT466 / MD3060
thanks for the heads up! I was watching those - kind of kicking myself now but we just couldn't get enough time off from work to go down to pick one up and get it checked and ready for the long drive home.

I appreciate the support for sure.
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Old 03-09-2021, 11:05 PM   #18
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Taylor Lake Village, TX
Posts: 234
Year: 1994
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DT408 6.7L L6
Rated Cap: 14
No worries. When I bought a couple years ago I paid $2600 so the price did get up a bit higher. I did as much due diligence as I could over the phone with the school mechanics. Then I just had to have a bit of faith and good luck. Reading between the lines of the ad, I wouldn't have been worried in the slightest about these buses making a trip. They were recently inspected, some had videos of running motors, and the issues they highlighted were things like, "needs to be cleaned," and "rust on bumper." They also came from pretty nice school district.

Keep your eyes open, be ready to pounce, your bus will come along.
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Old 03-09-2021, 11:11 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djdalfaro View Post
No worries. When I bought a couple years ago I paid $2600 so the price did get up a bit higher. I did as much due diligence as I could over the phone with the school mechanics. Then I just had to have a bit of faith and good luck. Reading between the lines of the ad, I wouldn't have been worried in the slightest about these buses making a trip. They were recently inspected, some had videos of running motors, and the issues they highlighted were things like, "needs to be cleaned," and "rust on bumper." They also came from pretty nice school district.

Keep your eyes open, be ready to pounce, your bus will come along.
One thing I've noticed (although I'm not sure my perception on this is accurate) is that it seems Texas buses often have rusty front bumpers despite not having rust anywhere else, while trashed-out rust buckets from New York or New Jersey will have immaculate front bumpers (like mine). I wonder if it's because of the kid-smackers and/or how they're mounted on the bumpers.
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Old 03-10-2021, 07:55 AM   #20
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Join Date: Nov 2020
Location: Colorado
Posts: 40
Year: 2001
Coachwork: International
Chassis: 3800
Engine: T444E
Rated Cap: 29000 GVWR
We have a T444E with a A2000 trans (governor removed) that we love, it runs like a champ and has no problem hitting and cruising at 70mph. Got ours from a dealer in Monument Colorado called Rocky Mountain Bus Co. we didn’t pay the sticker price, we made an offer and they took it. We got a 11window.
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