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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-30-2020, 01:38 PM   #41
New Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Central California
Posts: 7
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin
Chassis: Ford E350 Girardin Minibus
dzl_

Keep an eye on PublicSurplus.com and auctions by West County Transportation. I bought my 2003 Ford E450/Girardin minibus from them.

Rendeane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2020, 01:40 PM   #42
New Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Central California
Posts: 7
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin
Chassis: Ford E350 Girardin Minibus
Peakbus,

Where did you get those beautiful white chairs?
Rendeane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2020, 01:25 AM   #43
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rendeane View Post
Peakbus,

Where did you get those beautiful white chairs?

Hi Rendeane,

I bought the chairs from a woman who was converting a nice little Turtle Top shuttle bus. They're very comfy. I haven't replaced my driver's seat but am considering it.
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2020, 11:35 PM   #44
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Back to the Grindstone

Well, it was a fun summer with 8 quick trips and 15 nights spent in Rosa Bus. I've been slowly getting back to bus work now that paid work has eased a bit. The first order of business was to remove the rear bed, and cover the couch and cabinet with plywood to prevent damage.
20201105_142926.jpg
After that I began pulling the end caps off and then the ceiling.

20201105_171649.jpg

20201107_161543.jpg

20201108_170202.jpg

As Vineyardseashell notes in her thread, Girardin uses a combination of stainless rivets and adhesive to attach the aluminum inner panels. I popped the center pins in with a pointed bit on an air chisel and then drilled the rivet heads loose. Some pins don't pop and require drilling out fully. I could then use a sharpened air chisel blade to pop the rivets loose and free the adhesive from the frames and other panels. Some came off quick and some- especially at corners- were challenging. I probably spent 2 hours getting the little piece off behind the driver's seat and the sidewall.
20201109_163541.jpg (oops-sideways photo)
As you can see, a leak above created a good bit of rust on some horizontal frames. One has a couple of rust holes. I will hit them with Ospho Rust converter and probably reinforce the badly damaged one.

It's hard to get motivated now that it's about 30 degrees out (and in the bus). A wee bit frustrating to have a diesel heater installed but not wired in completely. Once I finish the really dirty work and insulating, I may do some temporary wiring to get it running. Next up are 101 details to tackle before insulation: Wiring, blocking for interior finishes, sealing holes and leaks, installing tracks for the solar panel. I'd really like to get it spray foamed but need it to be warmer for some of these things. Trying to find a shop to park in for the next couple months.
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2020, 02:57 AM   #45
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: North East
Posts: 141
Year: 2011
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird G5 HC
Chassis: GMC 4500
Engine: Vortex 6
Rated Cap: 24
Hi Peakbus,


Wow! That looks awesome! I see similar things, but your photos really show the differences between our buses.



I like how your bus has ribs going lengthwise along the roof. And, I'm just noticing, you don't have an emergency exit roof hatch.



Is that your bus' electrical panel above the drivers seat? If yes, it looks so less confusing than mine.


Curious as to how heavy your AC unit was. I intend to drop my the same way, but would rather have help on hand, as I anticipate the weight of the unit to be more than I can handle by myself.


I can't wait to see your next update!


Clyn
Vineyardseashell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2020, 10:25 AM   #46
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Hi Clyn,
Thanks. It was definitely helpful to see your demolition photos to get a sense of what I had in store. Similar in many ways.

That is one electrical panel. I just discovered another in the dash on the passenger side. I still haven't done any wire tracing. If it's anything like my old bus, the wires may be labeled along the length which makes tracing from the load back to the panel easier. If nothing else, they are color coded.

The A/C wasn't super heavy but you definitely want another pair of hands. I braced it in place with an adjustable prop while I unbolted it. After taking off the cover, 4 bolts hold it to the ceiling. You can see one of the nuts at the left side of the AC just below the ceiling.
20201106_125842.jpg
Then lowered it as much as I could. It will be awkward to work around but without disconnecting it, that's where it will stay.
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-12-2020, 12:29 PM   #47
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: North East
Posts: 141
Year: 2011
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird G5 HC
Chassis: GMC 4500
Engine: Vortex 6
Rated Cap: 24
Hi.Peakbus,


Some of the other Girardins in our fleet have the electrical panel in the black box under where the glove box would be. In my bus the black box is a storage box.


Thanks for the heads up on the AC weight. I figured as much. My AC hose dont look like they will have much play for movement.


I took a quick glance at some of the wiring and it is labeled by text, numerically and color coded to the wiring diagrams I have.


I have to run for now. Thanks, and have a great day!
Vineyardseashell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2020, 10:33 AM   #48
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: North East
Posts: 141
Year: 2011
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird G5 HC
Chassis: GMC 4500
Engine: Vortex 6
Rated Cap: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vineyardseashell View Post
Hi.Peakbus,

I took a quick glance at some of the wiring and it is labeled by text, numerically and color coded to the wiring diagrams I have.

Here is a (fuzzy) image of how my wires are labeled.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_20201113_112146_burst_01.jpg (580.9 KB, 15 views)
Vineyardseashell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2020, 11:08 AM   #49
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vineyardseashell View Post
Here is a (fuzzy) image of how my wires are labeled.
Nice! Those are super helpful when going from one end of the bus to the other. Thanks for the Girardin # too. They are quite helpful. I actually got a wiring diagram from them earlier when I bought my bus. It should be a big help.
Have a great weekend!
Chris
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2021, 10:56 PM   #50
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Pre Insulation

Bus work in mid-January at the 48th parallel can be a little tricky when one has sealants to cure. I was searching for a shop so I could do some exterior sealing prior to spray foaming. My neighbor offered up his dream shop. He said feel free to turn up the heat if you need- he already keeps it at 70!! Note the beer fridge adjacent to my entry door
20210111_104611[1].jpg
I had a big list to complete in a few days: Delete the passive roof vent

20210109_121025[1].jpg

20210113_105802[1].jpg

20210113_110038[1].jpg

Remove and seal holes at the red warning lights. Later I will install LED pod flood lights under the replaced light "eyebrows".


20210112_090526[1].jpg

20210112_181624[1].jpg

20210113_104402[1].jpg

20210113_184635[1].jpg

Seal all roof seams and rivets; mount solar panel. I used Dicor Self Leveling lap sealant at seams and rivets. I used some of the old wheelchair tie-down track as rails to mount the solar panel. These were supported on a sandwich of 1 SS fender washer between 2 neoprene washers to allow water to drain off. The tracks were bolted through the roof with polyurethane sealant. On the inside I bolted in supports where needed between the ribs to attach the Solar mounts. These were welded out of 1 1/4" angle iron as seen around the fan in the bottom photo.

20210112_084249[1].jpg

20210108_150609[1].jpg

20210112_181704[1].jpg

20201223_144556[1].jpg

All in all, a whirlwind of 4 days with much progress!
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2021, 11:22 PM   #51
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Is it worth it?

Last week's push was for spray foam. I started masking, and masking, and masking some more. It probably took a full day to cover everything in this short bus I didn't want covered in spray foam or the little clingy fuzz that comes with trimming. I was hoping for a Thursday appointment but the insulation contractor told me to get to his shop by 6:30 AM Wednesday. That really pushed the prep.

20210119_223342[1].jpg

20210119_212841[1].jpg

I trimmed the foam on my last bus and it was a thankless job. This time I asked them to trim the large areas. They started by exposing the metal ribs with a wire wheel on an angle grinder. Then they used a wide, wire brush grinder that ran along the ribs shaving the foam flush with the ribs.

20210120_092308[1].jpg

20210123_115339[1].jpg

20210123_115352[1].jpg

They did a great job and I only had some minor trimming in tight spots. Oh, and the clean-up. This grinding debris is like a static-cling snowstorm. It probably took a solid day to get it all cleaned up. Even still it filters down after countless blowing, vacuuming sessions. If I ever do another bus, I might use a different product. The effort just in prepping and cleanup is crazy. Then after unmasking, you inevitably find more to trim which starts the whole mess over again. It does a great job sealing every little spot though.
Started laying out the T&G pine ceiling today!
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2021, 12:18 PM   #52
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Ceiling Done!

Finally! Each photo represents about two days of work. 5/16" x 3.5" pine T&G. Bevel cut ends, glued and screwed with stainless-oval head screws to ribs. Each board had 18 steps to install, provided no obstacles, of which there were plenty. Every skoolie related project consumes 2-4 times as much time and effort as originally thought. But still rewarding to make progress.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20210128_102423.jpg (124.4 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg 20210128_173358.jpg (197.9 KB, 12 views)
File Type: jpg 20210130_132039.jpg (164.6 KB, 10 views)
File Type: jpg 20210131_172155.jpg (170.0 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg 20210204_175010.jpg (181.3 KB, 8 views)
File Type: jpg 20210207_164053.jpg (149.7 KB, 11 views)
File Type: jpg 20210208_175306.jpg (172.9 KB, 14 views)
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2021, 02:38 PM   #53
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jan 2020
Location: Fraser Valley British Columbia
Posts: 794
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freightliner
Engine: C7 Cat
Fantastic looking work and progress, you'll be heading for Nakusp in no time!!
Keep up the good work.
Cheers

Oscar
Oscar1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2021, 08:40 PM   #54
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Thanks Oscar. Now on to the fun part!
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2021, 09:29 PM   #55
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: North East
Posts: 141
Year: 2011
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird G5 HC
Chassis: GMC 4500
Engine: Vortex 6
Rated Cap: 24
Peakbus, It is looking really good! Your hard work will pay off!!
Vineyardseashell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-09-2021, 11:29 PM   #56
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Thanks Clyn! I've been wondering if you were still around. Probably too chilly on the island for bus work these days.
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2021, 08:25 AM   #57
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: North East
Posts: 141
Year: 2011
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird G5 HC
Chassis: GMC 4500
Engine: Vortex 6
Rated Cap: 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by peakbus View Post
Thanks Clyn! I've been wondering if you were still around. Probably too chilly on the island for bus work these days.

Hi Peakbus,


Yes, it has been too chilly to work on the bus lately, that and life getting in the way I think since my last build update post, I have only managed to to add one piece of insulation to the roof.



Still waiting for my 60 days to pass with Allstate Insurance, so I can re-write the previous policy; Despite having permission to have the bus parked inside the bus lot, another school staff member is making a fuss about the bus being there, so I need to move it once the insurance kicks in again...LOL I may make it my daily driver for a while and park it in the staff parking area...LOL


Spring is just around the corner and just as soon as the warmer weather hits, I will resume the bus build where I left off.


Take care!


Clyn
Vineyardseashell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2021, 12:01 PM   #58
Bus Crazy
 
joeblack5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: pa
Posts: 2,137
Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Peakbus,
Great work on your bus, 4x? you are doing pretty good.

It is no small feat to be the entrepeneur, bank, researcher, designer and contractor in the same person.



Clyn,

homo homini lupus.

Poor wolves .. they got poorly represented.




Johan
joeblack5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2021, 05:55 PM   #59
Bus Nut
 
peakbus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Sandpoint, ID
Posts: 374
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Girardin Microbird MB-IV
Chassis: Ford E450
Engine: 7.3 Diesel
Rated Cap: 25
Thanks Johan. Not a 4x. That would be nice , though probably really cuts the mileage. 10mpg is already low enough. I figured a light, aluminum shorty would do better than a full sized, but still a brick pushing through the wind.
peakbus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-10-2021, 06:11 PM   #60
Bus Crazy
 
joeblack5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: pa
Posts: 2,137
Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
with the 4x I meant the time it takes to do a project.



That seems low, On my 1998 ford E350 bus, 7.3 , same as you i get 13 to 15 MPG. I am a slow and have a a very light foot.


On my extended 1998 E350 van 4x4 7.3 with 3.55 ratio and 255/85/R16 I et 16 average and 19 mpg top at 55Mph speed.


Johan
joeblack5 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 02:37 PM.


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