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Old 11-01-2020, 07:43 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2020
Location: Western New York
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Year: 2013
Newbie here, is this a good bus?

Hello,
I'm quite new to bus end of things, most of my travel has been out of a temp build in a minivan, so I know very little about buses at this point and I am out of my element. I am hoping to get a mini bus as my Winter/Spring project, but don't know much about the transmission/engine combos, just that they can make or break a good travel bus... Provided this is mechanically sound, would this be a good?

Year: 2013
Make: Chevy
Model: Express G4500
Body Style: Mini School Bus
Odometer Numbers: 99168
Engine Make/Model: 6.0L V8 OHV 16V FFV, 320 hp
Cyl: 8
Fuel Type: Gas
Transmission Model: 6L90
Transmission Type: Auto
Single Axle/Dual Axle: Single Axle
Tire Size/Type: 225/75R16
Drivetrain: 2WD

Thanks in advance for your responses and help!

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Old 11-01-2020, 07:45 PM   #2
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GM cutaway with 6.0 LS engine, better of the two 6-speed autos... Prefer dual rear wheel, but I'd buy that in a heartbeat if I was looking for a shorty. Price dependent of course.
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Old 11-01-2020, 07:50 PM   #3
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6.0 gm is a good gas engine.
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Old 11-01-2020, 07:58 PM   #4
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I will add to be sure to check the engine hours, though these GM cutaways have been known to reset their hour readings for no good reason. Design flaw. Most route buses should be in the range of 3-16 miles for every hour. Some will read higher, but the highest average you should see is about 25-29 miles for every hour logged.
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Old 11-02-2020, 08:13 AM   #5
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Thanks! I think I am going to go for it, it is an auction that is local to me and I was thinking about a $2,000 cap. Does that seem like a reasonable price?
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Old 11-02-2020, 09:13 AM   #6
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I might go $3000 if the hours fall in average of 3-28 miles for each engine hour, and it's clean, and no rust, of course. I would check it out in person prior to the sale if possible to avoid any nasty surprises. Milky oil, oil smells of fuel, coolant looking rough, trans fluid smelling like coolant, any of that, walk away.
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Old 11-02-2020, 05:06 PM   #7
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Be fair warned that a replacement 6.0 crate engine is north of $4000, some approaching the $5K mark - and that doesn't include installation. If this sounds like the voice of experience talking, that's because it is.


My '08 Suburban needs an engine and I'm looking right at $7000 for the complete job (with a 5.3, the 6.0 is very similar.)
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Old 11-02-2020, 06:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad_SwiftFur View Post
Be fair warned that a replacement 6.0 crate engine is north of $4000, some approaching the $5K mark - and that doesn't include installation. If this sounds like the voice of experience talking, that's because it is.


My '08 Suburban needs an engine and I'm looking right at $7000 for the complete job (with a 5.3, the 6.0 is very similar.)
That sure seems a bit high price wise. Find a good runner as a donor and use that engine. Get something out of a '06 or older and get rid of the AFM. Luckily mine is a '05 and I can find good running 6.0 in the area for $2500 or less.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CHEESE_WAGON View Post
I will add to be sure to check the engine hours, though these GM cutaways have been known to reset their hour readings for no good reason. Design flaw. Most route buses should be in the range of 3-16 miles for every hour. Some will read higher, but the highest average you should see is about 25-29 miles for every hour logged.
I hadn't heard about the resetting hour meter from anyone else until now. Mine did it earlier this year, somewhere around the 9600 hour mark.
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Old 11-02-2020, 07:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackE View Post
That sure seems a bit high price wise. Find a good runner as a donor and use that engine. Get something out of a '06 or older and get rid of the AFM. Luckily mine is a '05 and I can find good running 6.0 in the area for $2500 or less.

I intend to drive this for 10+ years as it's in good shape otherwise. The '06 and older won't work, something about a reluctor wheel on the crankshaft? But this *IS* for an AFM delete engine + programmer module + all the updates.
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Old 11-02-2020, 07:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackE View Post
I hadn't heard about the resetting hour meter from anyone else until now. Mine did it earlier this year, somewhere around the 9600 hour mark.

My Suburban apparently did it too prior to my buying it.
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Old 11-02-2020, 09:04 PM   #11
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$4k for an all-new engine is not bad, but yes you can go cheaper with used ones.
Sure beats $10k for a used diesel...
"2019 npr isuzu Diesel engine 163 miles like new - $10,000 (San Jose)"
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Old 11-03-2020, 04:11 PM   #12
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Engine: 8.3 Cummins MD3060
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad_SwiftFur View Post
I intend to drive this for 10+ years as it's in good shape otherwise. The '06 and older won't work, something about a reluctor wheel on the crankshaft? But this *IS* for an AFM delete engine + programmer module + all the updates.
Pretty sure BlackBear Performance can tune that crap out of your ECM so you can run an older non-AFM engine in the GMT900. Or if you buy a donor vehicle, just use the ECM from the donor. A couple years ago I did a full rebuild on a 7.4 from a '99 Suburban. I was right at about $4000 with the rebuild and replacing just about everything possible under the hood, including all the A/C components. That price for a reman engine really isn't too bad. I did everything but the machine work. Labor would have easily run me another $3000.
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