I'm new to the forum, just wanted to say Hi and post a pic of my new baby! I've wanted to do a conversion for years now and I'm super stoked to actually be doing it!!! This forum is amazing. I can't believe there are so many people as crazy as me out there....I love it!!
The engine is a ford 460 7.5 liter gasoline. I was hoping for a diesel but it turned out not to be, oh well. The rear axles are dual then single tag. The tag axle has an electronic brake and auto leveling air spring installed, sounds great but I fear it just more to break down later!
Day 1, we got the seats removed and started on the rear heater. My daughter is my bus buddy, not many teenagers would want to spend their weekend working on dirty old bus with their dad! She got the bug, I'm so proud!
At the end of day 2 we completed removal of the AC unit, rear heater, and ceiling.
When I was under the bus removing the heater lines, I noticed the floor is plywood straight through. Looks like I'll be ripping it all out and installing sheet metal before laying a subfloor. The upside is it'll be easier to paint the frame. I was thinking on using Por-15. I've had great luck with their products on past projects.
Thanks, I can't wait to squeeze my floor plan into that long space!Question about the floor, since most of these buses come with wood floors, do you think it would be ok to replace the floor with marine ply rather than sheet metal, then maybe coat the entire underside in rubber coat? The original floor lasted this long and it wasn't undercoated. Thoughts?
Ok, so today I got to work on the bus. The roof hatch was leaking and soaked the cardboard honey comb sandwiched between the two layers of fiberglass. The roof was sagging bad on one side so I had to cut open the ceiling and remove all the damaged insides.
After a few bloody knuckles I finally got the cardboard scraped off.
I plan to reinforce the roof and insulate it. Then I'll support the original roof line with my interior walls.
Things went pretty smooth and I had some time to start ripping up the floor. Hoefully I can get the rest done tomorrow.
It looks like I'll be doing some welding to the frame. These side supports were badly rusted and falling apart.
Good progress....what's actually holding fiberglass. Body up right now?I know not the heater or toolbox.
LOL, I was wondering that myself! It looks like the rear bumper support and then the front cab are the only things holding it up right now. I got a little nervous yesterday becasuse we just had a foot of snow dumped on us. I thought I was going to wake up to a collapsed roof! As far the cuts go they should be pretty straight forward, like you said. I just have to find a good steel supplier.
Yeah it's pretty bad, on the lighter side, I just placed my steel order. I'm picking it up on Friday, so that'll be my weekend project. I can start preparing the crossbeams. Unfortunately the temps here are still too low to begin any painting on the frame so I'll have to wait a couple of weeks.
Seeing your support beam damage is motivating me to have a good look at my undercarriage.
Lovin' your avatar, BTW.
The kids and I were out for a walk today and came across an old abandoned car that me and my buddies had burned, blown up and shot up over 45 years ago. The frame on that car was totally intact. You could drag that bugger out of the woods and build it into a perfectly serviceable vehicle. It ticks me off that that old nasty thing is in great shape and mine is all rusty.
Roach.....They definately don't build em like they used too, that's for sure. I picked up my steel order today. The new crossbeams I'm putting in are 1/8" thick, nice and beefy compared to the 1/16th" garbage they originally put in my bus. It's no wonder why they rotted out so bad. On another note, glad you like the avatar, just my little statement against our out of control government. Living in NY I have to deal with some of the worst!
So I got to work on the new steel for the crossbeams. The steel supply cut them exactly to length for me, so that saved me a step. I had to drill the bolt holes through. 7/16" on the bottom and 1" on top so the socket will fit through. I had to step up with four or so bits to get to the final size I needed. The 1" hole was a pain, of course the drill bit dulled out with only 3 holes left, but I was able to get through it.
Made in the USA!