Free 7 Day Trial RV GPS App RV Trip Planner Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Free 7 Day Trial ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-21-2021, 10:28 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 12
Year: 2005
Chassis: E350 Shuttle
2005 Ford Shuttle Kid Hauler

New to the conversion game!

Neighbor (3 daughters) and myself (5 daughters), surprised our wives and kids for Christmas this year with a 2005 Ford E350 Diamond shuttle......

Now we have to get it up to their standards to enjoy "safely" with the kiddos.

Immediate plans:

-already removed seats and wheelchair lift
-currently removing flooring
-install new plywood floor with laminate top layer
-install 12 seats we purchased from a Ford Transit with integrated shoulder harnesses
-upgrade A/V: new head-unit, TV, Blu-ray, inverter, speakers, amp, LED courtesy lights

That should get us rolling for trips planned this summer: family zoo trip, daddy-daughter camping trip to the Smokey Mountains, fall family trip with wives to Asheville area.

Future plans:

-rear cargo carrier
-wall/ceiling replacement
-built-in storage cabinets and shelving
-possibly a roof-rack and some solar power
-foldout porch/loading dock from the side double doors
-awning attachments along one side

A few questions for the group as we dive-in....

#1: What is the preferred floor replacement method? I've seen several methods here, most start with a solid metal floor. Our diamond just has a metal grid system, which was covered by a thick plastic layer before plywood and a rubber flooring material. The plastic layer just trapped all the water and completely soaked/rotted the plywood, what a mess! This seems like a bad design so I would like to do something different. Current thinking is just seal some ply with bedliner/undercoating before installing, followed by a underlayment and then laminate flooring. Since we won't be sleeping in it, I'm not too concerned with insulation.

#2: The shuttle has a underseat heater (Pro Air Power Pak 445 45k BTU) that is getting warm coolant flow that I can feel in the hoses. I tested the power and power is getting to the unit on both the low and high switch settings, however the fan is not kicking on. Just wondering if it's worth digging in to fix this (which I will still need to relocate) or if I'm better off just looping the coolant hoses together and discarding the unit? We are in NC, so not too terribly cold in the winter, plus will typically have at least 6-10 people on board for lots of body heat.

Thanks for all the help so far and in advance!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Photo Dec 25, 1 32 51 PM.jpg (464.9 KB, 24 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Dec 25, 1 19 41 PM.jpg (441.3 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 21, 12 08 48 PM.jpg (356.9 KB, 18 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 21, 12 27 15 PM.jpg (477.7 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 20, 5 12 54 PM.jpg (425.1 KB, 13 views)

hrdcor32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2021, 10:29 AM   #2
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 59
That's awesome, and exactly what I want to do!! We have 5 kids, plus basically live with my wife's parents. I want a 5-6 window short bus or a shuttle as the ultimate road trip vehicle. Basically spread the kids out a little to limit bickering, have some entertainment options, and a simple dry toilet and snack bar in the back. Keep us updated on your progress!!
MNbusboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2021, 11:55 AM   #3
Bus Crazy
 
Mountain Gnome's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 1,066
Year: 1999
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: TC1000 HandyBus
Engine: 5.9L 24V-L6 Cummins ISB
Rated Cap: 26 foot
Quote:
Originally Posted by hrdcor32 View Post
#1: What is the preferred floor replacement method? I've seen several methods here, most start with a solid metal floor. Our diamond just has a metal grid system, which was covered by a thick plastic layer before plywood and a rubber flooring material. The plastic layer just trapped all the water and completely soaked/rotted the plywood, what a mess! This seems like a bad design so I would like to do something different. Current thinking is just seal some ply with bedliner/undercoating before installing, followed by a underlayment and then laminate flooring. Since we won't be sleeping in it, I'm not too concerned with insulation.

#2: The shuttle has a underseat heater (Pro Air Power Pak 445 45k BTU) that is getting warm coolant flow that I can feel in the hoses. I tested the power and power is getting to the unit on both the low and high switch settings, however the fan is not kicking on. Just wondering if it's worth digging in to fix this (which I will still need to relocate) or if I'm better off just looping the coolant hoses together and discarding the unit? We are in NC, so not too terribly cold in the winter, plus will typically have at least 6-10 people on board for lots of body heat.
I would not use bedliner/underbelly coating. My sis had a Toyota with that underbelly coating in the salty-winter roads in the Boone, NC mountains. I thought "great"; until I put a jack under the frame, and it went "crunch". The stuff will flake/peel away when a little ding/hole is made, and then trap the water.


If you paint that on plywood, then put that on the "metal grid", the grid will likely wear holes in it, and be just like the plastic crap you pulled out.


Maybe aluminum sheets? SS?



Marine plywood may be the best.


The "grid", if I imagine it correctly, is a problem, IMO. It will wear against anything you coat the wood with.


Or maybe put some kind of "spacers" (plastic) between the grid and plywood. Or you could maybe then use cheap steel sheetmetal and prime and paint it.


And, yes, I personally would definitely replace the fan and keep the heater, even if that means moving it to suit your floor layout.
__________________
Look at the Sky; look at the River. Isn't it Good?
Mountain Gnome is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2021, 03:51 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 12
Year: 2005
Chassis: E350 Shuttle
Quote:
Originally Posted by MNbusboy View Post
That's awesome, and exactly what I want to do!! We have 5 kids, plus basically live with my wife's parents. I want a 5-6 window short bus or a shuttle as the ultimate road trip vehicle. Basically spread the kids out a little to limit bickering, have some entertainment options, and a simple dry toilet and snack bar in the back. Keep us updated on your progress!!
Exactly our plan, ordered the flatscreen last night!
hrdcor32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2021, 03:53 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 12
Year: 2005
Chassis: E350 Shuttle
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mountain Gnome View Post
I would not use bedliner/underbelly coating. My sis had a Toyota with that underbelly coating in the salty-winter roads in the Boone, NC mountains. I thought "great"; until I put a jack under the frame, and it went "crunch". The stuff will flake/peel away when a little ding/hole is made, and then trap the water.


If you paint that on plywood, then put that on the "metal grid", the grid will likely wear holes in it, and be just like the plastic crap you pulled out.


Maybe aluminum sheets? SS?



Marine plywood may be the best.


The "grid", if I imagine it correctly, is a problem, IMO. It will wear against anything you coat the wood with.


Or maybe put some kind of "spacers" (plastic) between the grid and plywood. Or you could maybe then use cheap steel sheetmetal and prime and paint it.


And, yes, I personally would definitely replace the fan and keep the heater, even if that means moving it to suit your floor layout.
Thanks! Certainly leaning towards the marine ply at this point. Good point on the rubbing of the grid on the ply coating, will think on that one a bit.

I was afraid that would be the consensus on the heater, haha. Will tink with it a bit and see if I can figure out the issue!
hrdcor32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-22-2021, 04:59 PM   #6
Bus Crazy
 
Jolly Roger bus 223's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Swansboro,NC
Posts: 1,660
Year: 86
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Ford B700
Engine: 8.2
Rated Cap: 60 bodies
welcome from swansboro,nc.
Jolly Roger bus 223 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2021, 03:47 PM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 12
Year: 2005
Chassis: E350 Shuttle
Was able to squeeze in a bit more demo work this weekend. Next step is cleaning up the perimeter edges, then on to fiber glassing a new floor to the walls.

Thoughts on the stairs? was planning just to clean them up a bit then coat them with POR15 or something similar before covering back up.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 28, 4 47 18 PM.jpg (238.0 KB, 15 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 28, 5 03 04 PM.jpg (297.8 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg Photo Mar 28, 4 47 36 PM.jpg (264.8 KB, 11 views)
hrdcor32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-29-2021, 08:57 PM   #8
Bus Crazy
 
Mountain Gnome's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 1,066
Year: 1999
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: TC1000 HandyBus
Engine: 5.9L 24V-L6 Cummins ISB
Rated Cap: 26 foot
Now that I see your "grid", it is not as I imagined it. I was thinking "expanded metal", or at least much smaller grid pattern, thinner.


You should be able to screw down whatever floor you want to that grid. I would put some kind of rubber matting across the tops of the beams, lay down thinish cheap zinc-plated sheet metal, then flooring plywood, or marine if you want to go bomber-proof.
__________________
Look at the Sky; look at the River. Isn't it Good?
Mountain Gnome is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-30-2021, 08:26 AM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2021
Location: Wilmington NC
Posts: 12
Year: 2005
Chassis: E350 Shuttle
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mountain Gnome View Post
Now that I see your "grid", it is not as I imagined it. I was thinking "expanded metal", or at least much smaller grid pattern, thinner.


You should be able to screw down whatever floor you want to that grid. I would put some kind of rubber matting across the tops of the beams, lay down thinish cheap zinc-plated sheet metal, then flooring plywood, or marine if you want to go bomber-proof.
Thanks! Yes it is a combination of heavy steel channels and just the thin flat sheet metal supports. Thinking we will probably go with 3/4" marine ply, sealing the edges and seams, then top with a simple underlayment and laminate flooring. Not worried about insulation since we won't be sleeping on the bus (at least not intentionally).
hrdcor32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:10 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.