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Old 10-14-2019, 11:44 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Question Preferred bus under 30’?

Hey y’all,

My nephew and I are looking for a shortish bus to convert and we’d like to stay under 30’ long bumper to bumper, with the inside being at least 16’ from the back of the driver’s seat to the back of the bus. The plan is to take it around the Midwest and Canada , so we need something that is not too hard to maneuver, can get on the highway, and handle mountain roads.

Anyone know of a particular make and model that fits those criteria? Also, my nephew is 6’3 and still growing so bonus points if the style you recommend has extra head room.

Thanks in advance, y’all!
Kat
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Old 10-15-2019, 09:45 AM   #2
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I'd be looking for a high headroom TC1000. Transit style buses give you the most possible interior space for a given length. It will have a Cummins 5.9 and almost surely an AT545 but even the bus racers here don't get too upset about that combo in a shortie.
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Old 10-15-2019, 09:49 AM   #3
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Thanks for the suggestion! I’ll definitely look into that!
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Old 03-19-2020, 10:48 AM   #4
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Y'all, I am proud to announce that I found a bus! The only problem is, I have not been able to find much info on this particular engine. Does that mean it's a dud? I am looking at a 2005 IC VT 365, automatic transmission, chair lift, six window AND he's a tallboy!!! My hard requirements for a bus are that it's a 78 inch ceiling height, under 30 feet long, automatic transmission, good tires, and minimal rust. This checks all of those boxes. It has about 200,000 miles. They want $4000, but I'm trying to get it down to about $3500. The place that selling it, also deals in scrap metal so I offered to let them keep the seats and the chairlift, but they weren't having it Thoughts?
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Old 03-19-2020, 12:28 PM   #5
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Old 03-19-2020, 01:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KatTravels View Post
Y'all, I am proud to announce that I found a bus! The only problem is, I have not been able to find much info on this particular engine. Does that mean it's a dud? I am looking at a 2005 IC VT 365, automatic transmission, chair lift, six window AND he's a tallboy!!! My hard requirements for a bus are that it's a 78 inch ceiling height, under 30 feet long, automatic transmission, good tires, and minimal rust. This checks all of those boxes. It has about 200,000 miles. They want $4000, but I'm trying to get it down to about $3500. The place that selling it, also deals in scrap metal so I offered to let them keep the seats and the chairlift, but they weren't having it Thoughts?
Kat,
There's are some good reasons you don't hear much about this engine.
1. It's a post emissions(2004) engine so it's less desirable to most private owners.
2. "The 6.0 L VT365 replaced the 7.3 L T444E, also built by Navistar in Indianapolis, but has not been as successful. A high number of warranty claims, some 50,000,000 in two years, caused Ford to discontinue their contract with Navistar to build a Diesel V6 and paying about $70,000,000 to Navistar as compensation for ending the contract." sorry was just easier to quote that from an article
3. I believe it was only in production for 4 years which is always a bad sign.

Now if you have the money and time, you could possibly do an engine swap for the smaller cummins. However I'm not sure if or how that would work, perhaps you could delete all the emissions equipment? Also, what is the Transmission on this bus, you said "handle mountain roads" so transmission and rear differential gearing are going to be something you really want to pay attention to. Most people want gears between the 3s and 4s for highway driving. For mountains you want lower gears like 5s and 6s, also a transmission with a lockup torque converter. Hope this helps!
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Old 03-26-2020, 01:43 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Maligator. View Post
Kat,
There's are some good reasons you don't hear much about this engine.
1. It's a post emissions(2004) engine so it's less desirable to most private owners.
2. "The 6.0 L VT365 replaced the 7.3 L T444E, also built by Navistar in Indianapolis, but has not been as successful. A high number of warranty claims, some 50,000,000 in two years, caused Ford to discontinue their contract with Navistar to build a Diesel V6 and paying about $70,000,000 to Navistar as compensation for ending the contract." sorry was just easier to quote that from an article
3. I believe it was only in production for 4 years which is always a bad sign.

Now if you have the money and time, you could possibly do an engine swap for the smaller cummins. However I'm not sure if or how that would work, perhaps you could delete all the emissions equipment? Also, what is the Transmission on this bus, you said "handle mountain roads" so transmission and rear differential gearing are going to be something you really want to pay attention to. Most people want gears between the 3s and 4s for highway driving. For mountains you want lower gears like 5s and 6s, also a transmission with a lockup torque converter. Hope this helps!
Time is not an issue, but money certainly is. You bring up some very valid points, thanks for your time! Based on what you and others said, I’ve decided to pass on that bus. I’m currently looking at a much older bus (1980’s) but with low miles and I don’t believe it’s a vt365, but I’ll find out soon. Thank you again for reaching out!!
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