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Old 12-14-2016, 09:20 AM   #1
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E450 skoolie conversion.

Picked this up back in May, have been working on it here and there since.

A lot of the following is cut and paste from some other message boards I'm on so please excuse anything that doesn't really make sense.

1998 E450 shortbus popped up on craigs and I grabbed it. 7.3 powerstroke, auto, 90k miles. rear heat and ac. decent tires. Previous owner plasti-diped the thing black

Drove it home for $3800.




Buddy of mine donated some reclining seats with belts from his church bus, Stole the table outtah a pop-up that I got for free a few years ago.


Gutted an old slide in of its sink/stove/oven/fridge/freezer/furnace. Only installing sink right now so I can get it titled. Scored a free cabinet. Built a countertop/back splash out of a piece of cutting board that came out of my moms restaurant. Took the drawer out of the top of the cabinet, screwed it to another drawer, and integrated it into the backsplash. Had a set of bunks from a previous enclosed trailer/camper we had.


Have a motorcycle event at the end of the month so need to be able to get the bikes in. Stole the tailgate/ramp off our garden tractor, trailer. It can serve duty on the bus too.
As a loading ramp:


Or as an out-door table/patio/dance floor (legs have been added instead of jackstand):


To hold it in traveling position I ripped the hood latch out of a parts truck I have laying around.
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:21 AM   #2
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Took it to the mud-bogs.



Got to the DMV friday and got the title converted to motorhome and an RV plate! :bounce:

Bikes fit nicely.


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Old 12-14-2016, 09:28 AM   #3
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Got some shelving installed for helmets/tools/tubes/filter stuff/parts/race radios




This weekend (while it was over 100* and the "perfect" time to work on a black bus) it got window screens, Autometer trans temp gauge, Tekonsha P3 brake controller, scangauge2, futon for couch/bed, and a 52" curved led bar(hey it was cheap AF and the headlights on this thing SUCK). I also couldn't find any hitch I was happy with so I bit the bullet and built one into the frame/bumper and added a 7 pin connector. Also got the wig wag school bus lights to work!











The BS Velcro mounting provided with the scangauge was a joke. Melted off the dash overnight. So I designed up and printed a mount for it.

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Old 12-14-2016, 09:30 AM   #4
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Integrated cupholders, roof vent bug screen, disco ball, Awning, and loaded up.





the bus did FANTASTIC on its first trip.

1000 miles towing the bronco and trailer through NM and the high passes of CO. 8 days of camping with the family of 4.

Lowest speed attained while climbing I-17 up Loveland pass up to the Eisenhower tunnel was 32mph.
Highest trans temp recorded @ 190*f.
Highest engine oil temp recorded @ 227*f.
Engine coolant temp gauge (factory) barely ever moved.
Average trip moving speed 60.1 mph.
Average 9.1 mpg.

Everyone who saw it loved it.
The awning was fan-freaking-tastic to have during the afternoon monsoons.
The discoball made everything sparkly all the time.
Window screens were un-needed as there were few bugs on this trip
The headlights SUCK and will be addressed before the next outing.
Need to do some brake work. An emergency braking scenario was made much more exciting by the lack of braking power, and the locking up front drivers wheel.
All and all, super pleased.
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:41 AM   #5
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Took it to the mud-bogs.



Got to the DMV friday and got the title converted to motorhome and an RV plate! :bounce:

Bikes fit nicely.





Got some shelving installed for helmets/tools/tubes/filter stuff/parts/race radios



Just about finished up for this go-round.
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:42 AM   #6
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Big campout coming with a quickness.

This weekend (while it was over 100* and the "perfect" time to work on a black bus) it got window screens, Autometer trans temp gauge, Tekonsha P3 brake controller, scangauge2, futon for couch/bed, and a 52" curved led bar(hey it was cheap AF and the headlights on this thing SUCK). I also couldn't find any hitch I was happy with so I bit the bullet and built one into the frame/bumper and added a 7 pin connector. Also got the wig wag school bus lights to work!







The BS Velcro mounting provided with the scangauge was a joke. Melted off the dash overnight. So I designed up and printed a mount for it
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:42 AM   #7
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Integrated cupholders, roof vent bug screen, disco ball, Awning, and loaded up.




The bus did FANTASTIC on its first big trip

1000 miles towing the bronco and trailer through NM and the high passes of CO. 8 days of camping with the family of 4.

Lowest speed attained while climbing I-17 up Loveland pass up to the Eisenhower tunnel was 32mph.
Highest trans temp recorded @ 190*f.
Highest engine oil temp recorded @ 227*f.
Engine coolant temp gauge (factory) barely ever moved.
Average trip moving speed 60.1 mph.
Average 9.1 mpg.

Everyone who saw it loved it.
The awning was fan-freaking-tastic to have during the afternoon monsoons.
The discoball made everything sparkly all the time.
Window screens were un-needed as there were few bugs on this trip
The headlights SUCK and will be addressed before the next outing.
Need to do some brake work. An emergency braking scenario was made much more exciting by the lack of braking power, and the locking up front drivers wheel.
Nothing ever fell off the shelf.

All and all, super pleased.

Need a fridge and stove.
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:43 AM   #8
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Had to cut a big ol hole in the side for the LP fridge ventilation.


got that all installed, had to remove the lower window for upper ventilation (not installed yet)


free fridge, cooktop and countertop. Dunno if I'll put a drawer under the stove, or just box it out for a small storage compartment. still need to add a backsplash and caulk everything.



Next on the list install furnace, run lp lines, mount tanks. Then get sink finished, add fresh and greywater tanks and heat exchanger.
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:43 AM   #9
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Lookin' Good! What kind of scooter do you ride/race?
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Old 12-14-2016, 09:43 AM   #10
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Got the doghouse built for the furnace.


Fitted the backsplash then dad went nuts and trimmed it all out!




Couldn't find an acceptable (to me) solution to mounting the LP tanks so I picked up a couple forklift straps and we hacked into them sat. Had to add some structure to mount them, as well as support the bottle and make them lockable.



dunno why the left tank looks like its sitting all funky compared to the right one. Its all square and true. Will have to look into that as its buggin the **** outtah me.


Then moved on to some bed rails to keep our butts from falling outtah the dang bunk.

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Old 12-14-2016, 09:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tango View Post
Lookin' Good! What kind of scooter do you ride/race?
Thanks! that brings us up to last weekend since May. Lot of work done, a lot more to go before another big trip in Feb.

What we're riding depends on where we're headed!

I have a ktm950 for camping/exploring/adventuring, a husqvarna te310 for singletrack slaying, and a gasgas txt300pro for trials.

My dad rides a ktm 950, husqvarna 250 2t or 4t depending on his mood, and a montessa trials.

we have a lot of fun
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Old 12-14-2016, 06:18 PM   #12
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For the trials bikes! And awesome build!
You MUST MUST MUST get an EGT gauge before you tow in the hills again! I cracked a piston on mine doing a long uphill on cruise control @ 12k lbs not even towing my trailer that day. After I replaced the motor, I put in a egt gauge. I was shocked how quick it went up. At a steady 12 lbs of boost, egts will go over 1300 degrees easily.
The vans don't have an intercooler like the pick ups. Careful-tunes are made for trucks.
I don't know why Ford went back to sealed beam headlights. My 95 has pretty darn good capsule headlights-but even our 2003 Ford van at work has the old style lights.
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my bus build https://www.skoolie.net/gallery/Skoolies/Sped
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Old 12-14-2016, 07:17 PM   #13
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Love Huskies. I raced a '73 and a '75 400 for the better part of a decade. Won many, many races with them and could not wear them out.
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Old 12-15-2016, 06:41 AM   #14
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well you sure know how to put **** together. very cool
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Old 12-15-2016, 07:01 AM   #15
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What a kickass bus!! And I love the plastidip look!! Keep it! Durable and if someone hits you they will just bounce off
Christopher
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:09 AM   #16
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Thanks everyone. it's been a fun project so far.

Question? why can't I edit or delete any of my posts? Apparently I posted twice a couple times.

Gracias.
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:16 AM   #17
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What a kickass bus!! And I love the plastidip look!! Keep it! Durable and if someone hits you they will just bounce off
Christopher
Its anything but durable. It ends up being nothing but a mess and a waste of time. An expensive waste.

But yes- very KICKASS bus!!
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:18 AM   #18
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Its anything but durable. It ends up being nothing but a mess and a waste of time. An expensive waste.

But yes- very KICKASS bus!!
I agree. I freaking hate the dang dip. At least its easy to touch up with a spray can.
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:26 AM   #19
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I agree. I freaking hate the dang dip. At least its easy to touch up with a spray can.
Yup.

Never paint it over anything you care about, though. It leaches through to the paint underneath and causes discoloration.
I have a friend who literally "dips" his $30,000 car every two weeks. I think he may be addicted to the fumes or something. But I've seen my fair share of "dip" and I'm not a fan.
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Old 12-15-2016, 09:34 AM   #20
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interesting... I plastidipped some of the dash pieces on the DEV.. mainly because my phone and such wouldnt slide around.. then I did it to some exposed A/C ducting and it stopped the condensation on the outside of the pipes when I run my custom dash air on deep freeze..

I was digging the stuff!
-Christopher
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