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Old 05-22-2020, 12:18 PM   #21
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This is exactly what I'm looking for, cosmetically, size, and location for pick-up. Anything to worry about? Are these mechanically reliable and something I can work on and learn on? Anything specific to ask about?

95 Chevy p30 Bluebird
6.5l Diesel "runs great"

https://newjersey.craigslist.org/wto...111643657.html
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Old 05-22-2020, 12:37 PM   #22
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This is exactly what I'm looking for, cosmetically, size, and location for pick-up. Anything to worry about? Are these mechanically reliable and something I can work on and learn on? Anything specific to ask about?

95 Chevy p30 Bluebird
6.5l Diesel "runs great"

https://newjersey.craigslist.org/wto...111643657.html
They're not very heavy duty. SO if you buy one don't plan on adding a lot of weight. they're already pushing the limits of the chassis.
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Old 05-22-2020, 12:54 PM   #23
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Got some more info:

Only thing not working Fuel gauge sending unit.

2nd owner - first was US Govt on Air Force base, so govt maintained. 2nd owner has only put 3000 miles since 2009 purchase.

Price seems high to me, even with only 98k miles.
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Old 05-25-2020, 04:42 PM   #24
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Looking further at this bus - got a video of it running and some pictures of the underside. How's this rust situation? I thinkI see some pitting, but I'm not sure.

IMG_6793.jpg

IMG_6792.jpg
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Old 05-25-2020, 04:58 PM   #25
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Looking further at this bus - got a video of it running and some pictures of the underside. How's this rust situation? I thinkI see some pitting, but I'm not sure.

Attachment 44962

Attachment 44963
That rust is nothing.
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Old 05-25-2020, 05:22 PM   #26
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The rust looks ok to me. They are a bit more roomy then the van cutaways. I have seen a few converted. Not a bad engine or a great engine. Should be plenty of parts support for it.

I have been to M&M for bus parts they are about an hour from me.
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Old 05-25-2020, 05:41 PM   #27
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I've wondered how common it is for schools to purchase these expensive buses and then not use them very often. It seems like it would be more economical to occasionally hire one of these bus services companies that operate fleets of school buses.
It's not rampant, but not as rare as you might think. Many school systems will buy buses five, ten, twenty at a time, before they even know for sure how this one or that one will be used. Often some newer buses are relegated to activity or spare bus duty (field trips, replacement while a regular route bus is being repaired, etc).

So it is somewhat common for a few to get pushed into this sort of duty when they only have a few years or very low miles. Someone somewhere doesn't realize or forgets that this particular bus is nowhere near worn-out, and it eventually gets retired due to age. Though cluster failure is more common and more believable of late. I wouldn't say there's a gem in every auction, though.
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Old 05-27-2020, 01:05 PM   #28
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IMG_1844.jpg

Any more thoughts on this bad boy? 5k seems steep, even with the lower miles and minimal rust. There isn't much out there on people converting these p30's. Will that underpowered of an engine make it out west? Up mountains?
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Old 05-27-2020, 01:16 PM   #29
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I have a video of the engine running, too. The sound on this is a little concerning early in the video, but I'm a rookie at knowing what this means. Could just be internal vibrations in the cab or something sitting on the dashboard?

Does it look like this bus is going to struggle going any faster than 40 mph? Does it seem topped out?

https://youtu.be/nw2N5xQNcnA
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Old 05-27-2020, 02:18 PM   #30
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P32 RVs can run 65 no problem with the 454 gasser, hard to say with the 350, but it might surprise you. The 350 is likely to have lower gearing to make up the difference, and 84-85-up got 700R4 / 4 speed auto. But 5k is steep unless it's pristine and low mileage. 5k can get you a nice 32-54`passenger if you're sharp...
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Old 05-27-2020, 02:29 PM   #31
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Attachment 45009

Any more thoughts on this bad boy? 5k seems steep, even with the lower miles and minimal rust. There isn't much out there on people converting these p30's. Will that underpowered of an engine make it out west? Up mountains?
At 14,500 gross weight, and 19.5 tires that is heavier duty then a one ton chassis hat would be used for a van cutaway shorty.

Of course it will go up mountains, but I am sure you mean well. That I do not know what is the hp rating?
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Old 05-27-2020, 02:33 PM   #32
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I have seen a few P30's at the Swarm in Florida. Seem roomy for a smallish vehicle. My Dad had a step van version of one, we used it for camping. Never any trouble out of it. His was a gas engine.
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Old 05-27-2020, 02:50 PM   #33
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me I'd pass and watch the auctions for a 6.0 late model gm gas van-bus.
Or a shorty on fullsize chassis.

The p30's are ok, but honestly they're pretty much light duty as far as buses go. I've never owned one.
I definitely wouldn't pay anything near the asking price. Half that would be pushing it for me.
Cowlitzcoach knows these buses and always advises against them. Especially the 6.5's. I'd defer to his advice.
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Old 05-28-2020, 06:34 PM   #34
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Maybe this is more in the ballpark? The description doesn't inspire the greatest confidence.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...3242694904367/
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Old 05-28-2020, 07:02 PM   #35
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A few more of the short variety:

https://www.truckpaper.com/listings/.../2001-gmc-3500

https://www.equipmentfacts.com/listi...2003-ford-e350
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Old 05-28-2020, 07:24 PM   #36
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Maybe this is more in the ballpark? The description doesn't inspire the greatest confidence.

https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...3242694904367/
I looked at all three you just listed and this would be the most interesting to me. Only downside is this is likely to have the AT 545 Allison transmission. It is ok if driven reasonably, but there are plenty of stories of failed trannys too. If it has this transmission it is a 4 speed without lock up torque converter. This tends to make a lot of heat when being driven at highway speeds for any length of time. Heat is a real tranny killer.

By the way I have one like it, and I let the previous owner keep the engine and trans. I will put something else in it. It really is not all bad, I just change engines in most everything I have.

If all three were equal mechanically which one would you be happy with?
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Old 05-29-2020, 04:47 AM   #37
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Thank you so much for looking and giving me feedback! That 3800 is appealing for the additional room and beefier engine, but frankly the smaller buses seem more practical for both driving and parking. Headroom for ability to insulate is a factor. I'm 5'11" and would like to be able to stand. I'd like to convert to Waste Veggie Oil down the road too, not sure how that would impact this range of bus.
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Old 05-29-2020, 07:29 AM   #38
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Veggie oil, been there done that, and had good results with it. An older mechanically fuel injected engine is pretty much a requirement. The 1995 3800 may well be mechanically injected, the others are not, and they will not play well with veggie. Also with veggie large fuel tanks are needed, or at least desirable, so the 3800 again is better suited. I carried a 275 gallon tote with me on cross country trips. The 3800 can carry the weight of a tote, good luck with that in either of the other two.

For me I have lots of neat things going on in life, so messing with veggie just takes to much time, and besides my bus has a gas engine. Sure I could change it but it works well and I like it. I have had a few Dodge trucks on veggie including my current one that is still veggie capable, and I use it(veggie) as available on occasion. Two old Mercedes I had converted. One of them I took it back off and built the engine much more for performance and wanted to keep the weight of the car down. Oh it turned out to be a nice handling car, could out turn the oil pressure.meaning The oil in the oil pan would slosh enough to loss oil pressure. If I had kept the car a dry sump oiling system was the next improvement to be done.

I guess the bottom line is if you really want to do veggie, you have to be clear in your choice of vehicle that it will be able to handle all that comes with veggie.

By the way parking my bus at 34ft is no problem. In a regular parking lot just take two spaces one in front of the other.
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Old 06-02-2020, 11:02 AM   #39
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Got a trio of contenders here. Any thoughts?

1995 International
https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...1497017503065/


1984(?) Diesel 60
https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...4744451893286/


2001 F-450 Diesel
https://www.facebook.com/marketplace...ssenger_banner
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Old 06-02-2020, 11:50 AM   #40
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The first one's a low headroom vista. That would be a hard pass for me. Bottom of the barrel.
The second one likely has really outdated running gear. Most likely an 8.2 i'd think.
The third one seems like a fairly vague description and is honestly more van than bus. Smashed bumper, a few dings in the body. Could be alright, IDK.
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