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Old 05-02-2018, 12:50 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by weboughtabus View Post
Thanks for the encouragement! We ended up getting ours from a gentleman who buys and sells buses, primarily on eBay. We got in touch with him on there, gave him an idea of what size and condition we were looking for and he let us know when he came across one. His eBay username is lightningman82 and his name is Bill. He was extremely helpful. I met up with him to view the bus, left a deposit and he delivered it (for a fee) a few days later. We paid $4,700 for the bus, if I recall correctly. Some people would say that's high, but we'll have a mostly uninterrupted floorplan, decent headroom and a bullet-proofed engine with low miles and the convenience of having it delivered to our doorstep.

As I understand it, Corbeil and Giardin used a lot of aluminum in their bus bodies. The easiest way to check, though, would be to bring a decent magnet and try to stick it to various parts of the bus. If you can get up under the bus, you should be able to see the sheet metal up over the frame rails and can check for magnetism.
Have you looked into "bulletproofing" the 6.0?
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Old 05-02-2018, 01:05 PM   #22
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Have you looked into "bulletproofing" the 6.0?
I was fortunate enough to get mine already done. The school district that this came out of was great with service and maintenance.
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Old 05-02-2018, 01:06 PM   #23
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I was fortunate enough to get mine already done. The school district that this came out of was great with service and maintenance.
Dang, that would be very lucky.
I've never heard of a school bus yard using aftermarket, non-stock accessories and modifications.
Its quite involved, so if they did do it you got REAL lucky!
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Old 05-02-2018, 01:08 PM   #24
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Dang, that would be very lucky.
I've never heard of a school bus yard using aftermarket, non-stock accessories and modifications.
Its quite involved, so if they did do it you got REAL lucky!
Oh, I'm well aware of how much I lucked out with this bus! Aluminum, already bulletproofed, more screws than rivets, a local school district that actually wants the wheelchair lift, etc.
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Old 05-02-2018, 01:35 PM   #25
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Thanks for the name. I've seen it on my hunt. Nice to get some feed back on this guy.
How much of a fee and how far did he have to drive it for you? Anybody know a reliable contact in Northern New England?
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Old 05-02-2018, 01:39 PM   #26
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Thanks for the name. I've seen it on my hunt. Nice to get some feed back on this guy.
How much of a fee and how far did he have to drive it for you? Anybody know a reliable contact in Northern New England?
No problem! I'm happy to help with my, admittedly, minimal knowledge. He drove it about 90 miles (and of course then had to drive back) and I think that was about $200.
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Old 05-02-2018, 04:53 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
Dang, that would be very lucky.
I've never heard of a school bus yard using aftermarket, non-stock accessories and modifications.
Its quite involved, so if they did do it you got REAL lucky!
Once they are five years old they are out of warranty, maybe sooner.

All it takes is a transport manager savvy enough to do the research and persuade the Board to spend the money. He may even be able simply to fit it into the budget.

Most bus barns have mechanics to do the job, so it's just the parts cost.
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Old 05-08-2018, 08:10 AM   #28
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Still no real progress to report. My wife and I have been busting our butts to finish up some projects that we started last year. Last spring/summer we completely overhauled our backyard. We tore out a crumbling patio and planter beds, installed a series of walls, a fence, a new railing and built a pergola. These past few weeks we've been working hard to get all of those lingering bits finished so we can just enjoy our new outdoor space all summer. As a result, the bus has been back-burnered while we work through some of that. I'm going to post some pictures of how it looked at the beginning, at the end of last summer and where we are now. We're not completely finished, yet. I have to finish rebuilding a railing for our side stairs (not pictured) and build a garden bed (also not pictured), but the end is in sight!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Before1.jpg (436.2 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg Before2.jpg (554.4 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg During1.jpg (382.7 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg During2.jpg (142.2 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg After1.jpg (370.4 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg After2.jpg (365.6 KB, 13 views)
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Old 05-10-2018, 08:55 AM   #29
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Out with the old, in with the new! This weekend I'm hoping to get the backyard fully finished by putting together the garden beds. It'll be really nice to be able to sit back and enjoy it, when we're all done! Then I can focus on the bus, my motorcycle and the million other projects I always have going on :P
Attached Images
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Old 05-18-2018, 09:02 AM   #30
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And the house work continues, so the bus work languishes. It's nice getting our house in order and making it more comfortable and beautiful. I'm just itching to make some real progress with the bus.

Just finished building a new gate to complement our new railing. When I put up the fence last year I ordered one more fence panel than I needed, so I used that to make the new gate. Basically had to disassemble the whole thing and build a more solid box frame. I had to get creative with the mounting and hardware. Since the pipe I was attaching the hinge side to was sunk in concrete and not straight, the gate isn't plumb with the house. Given the time, I could have corrected for that, but we have too many projects for me to be a perfectionist (usually it's my wife who stays level-headed and reminds me of this). Now that side of the house is looking pretty good and is way more functional. Once I get the power washer back from the shop I'll be able to clean up the concrete and the siding.
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Old 05-19-2018, 09:07 AM   #31
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Great looking start of your bus! We just bought an 07 Collins on a Chevy express van chassis with a Duramax. It looks like our bus size is about the same as yours so I'm excited to see how your plans come out! My wife doesn't think I can cram all my ideas into our space... lol
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Old 05-19-2018, 01:42 PM   #32
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Electrical

Quote:
Originally Posted by weboughtabus View Post
Another small development - after reaching out to the folks at Collins Bus Corporation (they bought Corbeil a few years back) I now have most of the electrical schematics for early 2000's Corbeil buses. If this information would be helpful to anyone else, please let me know.
Hello - I have a 2003 Corbeil bus - if you could send me the Electrical info, that'd be huge - my body is identical to yours except mines on a Chevrolet chassis with the GM 6.0 Vortec.

We use ours as our High/Middle School Mountain Bike Team bus for hauling kids/bikes around!!

GalenaGrowlers@gmail.com

Thanks!! Rob
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Old 05-19-2018, 01:58 PM   #33
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The Growler

Looking forward to following you on this adventure. Here's our 2003 Corbeil body on a Chevy Express 3500 body with a 28k mile Vortec 6.0L gas power plant. It's our team bus for hauling our Mountain Bikes for now.. gonna add on solar panels and a roof top observation deck, plus an awning. Bus Rear with Bikes.jpg

Bus 4.jpg
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Old 05-21-2018, 09:14 AM   #34
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Looking forward to following you on this adventure. Here's our 2003 Corbeil body on a Chevy Express 3500 body with a 28k mile Vortec 6.0L gas power plant. It's our team bus for hauling our Mountain Bikes for now.. gonna add on solar panels and a roof top observation deck, plus an awning. Attachment 22283

Attachment 22284
Hey Rob

The electrical schematics are on my Dropbox as are the multiplex schematics. You should be able to make use of them, I'd think. I tried to colorize the copies that were given to me in Black & White, so I apologize if I missed anything. Good luck with your build! We've had some fun working on ours, so far.
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Old 05-21-2018, 09:16 AM   #35
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Great looking start of your bus! We just bought an 07 Collins on a Chevy express van chassis with a Duramax. It looks like our bus size is about the same as yours so I'm excited to see how your plans come out! My wife doesn't think I can cram all my ideas into our space... lol
Yeah, I tend to have really big dreams! I find SketchUp to be SUPER helpful! It lets you get an idea of the space without having to actually mess anything up or waste materials. I think at this point I've gone through about 20 or 30 layout iterations with no harm to the bus.
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Old 09-04-2018, 10:33 AM   #36
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My wife and I decided to take a bit of a hiatus on the bus. We had some house projects to work on, other obligations and a desire to enjoy our summer. Now that the summer is winding down, we're going to get back at building up the bus.

One of the major hangups we'd been dealing with was the L-Tracks in the floor. Because they were bolted through the floor every three inches or so, we were dealing with approximately 100 bolts. They were predominantly Allen head bolts, which meant taking them out "properly" was extremely unlikely. After 14 years in service, those heads had so much filth ground into the heads, there was no way we'd be able to get a wrench in there. Some of the options we toyed with were cutting them all off from below, splitting the tracks lengthwise and cutting the bolts after removing the track or notching the heads of each bolt and using a flat head bit to back them out. I tried option one using a corded drill, mandrel and cut-off wheels. This was extremely slow and tedious and not a great option. Option two didn't really work, either, as I didn't have a metal cutting blade for my circular saw or an angle grinder. Option three seemed like a good plan, but the drill/mandrel/cut-off wheel combo wasn't well suited to that, either.

Finally I decided to use the right tool for the job. I bought myself an angle grinder, a stack of cut-off wheels and a grinding wheel and got to work. What a difference using the right tool makes! I was able to cut off six bolts in the amount of time it took to cut one with the drill. The biggest obstacle in the whole process was the bus, itself. There were areas with little clearance (above the fuel tank, in the wheel wells, etc.) and bolts that were actually run into the support beams, as well. In the end, it took about four hours, on and off, to get all the remaining bolts cut, the tracks removed, and the majority of the plywood, as well. I even managed to escape with only a few minor burns and one small flesh wound. I still have two small sections of plywood to remove, but that shouldn't take more than a few minutes to accomplish. One section is bolted through for the emergency door hinge locking mechanism and the rest is just held down with a few screws. After those pieces come out, it'll be time to start dropping ceiling and wall panels so the real fun can begin!

I've added some pictures of the progress as well as one showing how the dust and debris from the angle grinder didn't behave the same on a scar as it did, elsewhere.
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Old 09-19-2018, 03:46 PM   #37
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Unbelievably for me, I didn't take any pictures, but did make some progress this past weekend. We finally got up the last bits of the plywood and made sure the floor was free of bolts and screws that had been cut or shorn off. After that, I ground off the rivets that held the mounting plates from rear AC blower and removed some more of the screws from the ceiling panels. When I went to take down the first section, however, I found that the panels had been glued or taped together, at the seams.

Has anyone had experience with their ceiling panels being adhered to one another? I'm planning to spray some WD-40 in there as a solvent to try to break up the adhesive, but if someone else has a better solution, I'm open to it. My wife and I are planning on reusing the sheet metal after we've insulated in order to preserve some of the original look of the bus, so just cutting and tearing and pulling aren't really options.
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Old 11-05-2018, 08:16 AM   #38
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Ultimately we ended up deciding to pull the ceiling panels and cover it with something else, in the future. There was a substantial overlap between each panel, which meant there was quite a bit of adhesive and it was proving nearly impossible to take the panels down without deformation. On the upside, we had one piece that was perfect for skinning two window deletes that we have planned! I'll have to scrape and sand off the adhesive and clean the panel up a bit, but we won't have to go out and buy sheet aluminum for that particular project.

Demo goes a lot faster when you're not trying to preserve the things you're taking out! Once it was decided that we'd scrap the ceiling, things went very quickly. I've now pulled the entire ceiling and the insulation. This coming week and weekend I'm planning to pull the last of the interior panels and begin skinning over the lights and the window deletes we have planned. Then I'll start stripping out the unnecessary electrics (which I think will be nearly everything) and prepping for spray foam!

One of the other things I have to do is get the roof sealed up, because it seems we have a slight leak. I already had some suspicions about a leak, but it appears to have been confirmed. We've got some rain in the forecast, so hopefully it'll help me track down the general area of the leak so I can get up there with some sealant.
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File Type: jpg IMG_20181103_171023.jpg (290.5 KB, 19 views)
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Old 12-17-2018, 08:53 AM   #39
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Solar! Ever since we've started this project, I've made it a habit to check Craigslist regularly for anything that might be helpful for our build. I recently came across some solar panels at a great price and jumped at the offer. We managed to score 1020 Watts of solar (3 x 340 Watt panels) for $450, which works out to $0.44/Watt. For anyone in the New York/New Jersey area, the gentleman we worked with was very professional and has a business buying and selling solar. Now we have to finally wrap up the demo and start the rebuilding!
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Old 12-17-2018, 07:03 PM   #40
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congrats !....I just bought my first today !...I'll be doing a lot of reading here now !
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