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Old 04-27-2010, 01:07 PM   #1
recycler's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: leadville,colorado
Posts: 208
Year: 86
Coachwork: Thomas saf-t-liner
Chassis: International
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 40
Re: Future Concept Help!

Good luck with this endeavor! I do think that you might want to do some real-time measurements on this concept for a shortie is just that...SHORT! It is surprising how much that space gets eaten up!

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Old 04-27-2010, 01:33 PM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Missouri, Festus
Posts: 39
Year: 1997
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466E
Rated Cap: 65
Re: Future Concept Help!

Welcome and Good luck, I suspect you will have a blast in both planning and building your skoolie!

Flat floor plans are great and a great place to start. I would agree getting some accurate measurements will be necessary. I have found there is a ton of great information, knowledgeable and courteous people here at this community. Something additional I personally found very helpful is to play around with Google Sketchup (or another cad utility). It's free and there are a lot of free and detailed tutorials to help you get started. It has really helped me to be able to spin my model around and look at my design it real time from a three dimensional perspective.

Conversion photos viewable at:
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:37 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 158
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Chevy
Chassis: Bluebird
Rated Cap: 16
Re: Future Concept Help!

Mine, from behind the driver's seat to the back door was 15'9". It was 7'5" wide and 6'5" high in the middle.
Tools that you will need for sure:
-Angle grinder with 4" metal discs for grinding the seats and possibly rivets if you're covering windows.
-Hand saw or some kind of Dewalt Saw to make cutting wood easy.
-Caulk gun for sealing the floor, applying caulk, liquid nails, etc.
-A drill
-If you're drilling through any metal get gold titanium drill bits and get a few packs, you'll be breaking them trust me.
-If you're working at night bring a lamp, take off the cover and bring extra light bulbs, that's what we do.
-garbage bags - you will not believe the amount of trash that comes out of this bus, and it never stops. I am blessed to have a dumpster for free.
-extension cords
-generator if you don't have access to a nearby outlet
-obviously a tool kit with several wrenches, screwdrivers, plyers, scissors, ratchets, etc.
-box cutters for insulation

My advice is to also measure out EVERY DETAIL and make sure EXACTLY how it will look. Also, whatever your budget is, just add $100-$200 because you're not thinking about tax on what you buy, then you might need an extra of something, then this breaks, etc. Hope this helps, I have a lot more I can add, check out my conversion and many others and you'll get great ideas. My inside design is still changing and I am now building inside after 2 months of re-building!
Rutgers tailgating bus
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Old 04-27-2010, 07:46 PM   #4
Bus Nut
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Lethbridge, AB, Canada
Posts: 637
Year: 1981
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: Ford B-600
Engine: Ford 370 Propane
Rated Cap: 48
Re: Future Concept Help!

The best way to start is to actually measure some of the things you are used to around the house. If you sleep in a single bed, measure it. It will surprise you how big beds actually are. If you think you can sleep on a smaller one, try it, put some stuff on your bed to make it smaller and sleep in it for a night. If you can't handle the smaller bed comfortably, then you need to allow for a larger bed. In your first drawing, the bed is 18" wide. I would hang over both sides, literally! A regular couch is wider than 18". Make a list of what you need in the bus. If you need a fridge, figure out how large of a space you need. If you need a table, actually sit at a table and measure how much room you need to be able to sit down and stand up, it is hard to get up with a chair pushed in all the way! I went through the same thing. My scale was all out to lunch. Once I realized how much room things take, I knew I wasn't going to get as much in my bus as I wanted. BTW my bus is a 28 ft conventional, bumber to bumper, and has 19 ft of space from the back of the drivers seat to the back wall inside. Almost all buses are 7'6" wide inside, and a little over 6' high in the very center. Good luck with the conversion, and once you find your bus, or should I say, once your bus finds you, we need lots of pics.
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Old 04-30-2010, 08:33 AM   #5
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 158
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Chevy
Chassis: Bluebird
Rated Cap: 16
Re: Future Concept Help!

Just for the record, I spent 3 years on and off writing and re-writing my tailgate bus plans. I would work on it one week here then take 6 months off then do it again. I poured through tons of magazines for storage, stuff like Cabelas, I would ask restaurant owners for their appliances magazines,etc. I tried to budget for everything and I'm coming very close to my budget which is good. You're going to always want to change things and have a few people to bounce ideas off definitely helps. I got the idea of bunk beds from one of my friends and tons of ideas from looking on here. Just take your time - I know it's tough because now that I have the bus and I have a deadline it's all I think about sometimes, but it's fun. Literally pretend you are going through each step on the bus and write down exactly what you would need and the costs. Then at the end you have an idea of the costs and the work needed. I set up a time table for mine, so for one thing I set aside 1 week, another 3 weeks, another 2, etc.
Rutgers tailgating bus
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