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Old 03-06-2017, 09:16 AM   #1
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Missy Conversion - 1998 MCI 102

Howdy all and thank you for such a wonderful forum filled with great information!

My story is long but the short form is that I recently acquired a 1998 MCI 102 EL3 bus and am converting it to my home. I learned about RV'ing in a 34' 1994 Fleetwood PaceArrow and have lived in a 40' 2005 Newmar Dutch Star for the last few years (mostly boondocking and living on solar power). I wanted/needed a project and a bus conversion seemed like the answer.



Up to this point my efforts have mostly been planning/designing and ordering LOTS of parts. Hopefully the serious work begins this week.

130 gallon water tank, 104 gallon waste tank are still on order. Loads of parts are sitting waiting - 1700 watts of solar panels, Morningstar MPPT charge controller, water pump, transfer switches, load center, fuse panels, rolls of cable and wire, toilet, plumbing pipe and tubing, and on and on it goes.
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Old 03-06-2017, 10:11 AM   #2
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Welcome! --- Beautiful bus! Keep the pix coming as you build.
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Old 03-06-2017, 10:14 AM   #3
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Sweet!!!!

That is a beautiful rig and I like your plan.Lots of solar, big tanks etc. A purpose built boondocker.

We are looking forward to LOTS of pictures.
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Old 03-06-2017, 11:18 AM   #4
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Thanks guys!

I can bore you with a few photos now!

Lots of seating... currently.



Lots of solar but, for some reason, the panels are not producing much power, yet.

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Old 03-06-2017, 03:17 PM   #5
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... and seats out.



Getting the parcel racks out is a major undertaking. As noted on other build threads, those things are never meant to come out.
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Old 03-06-2017, 07:42 PM   #6
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Are you going to repurpose the seats? If not could we ask/beg/give the puppy-dog-eye treatment () for two sets - one driver side one passenger side set of seats? We sure could use them for our dinette area in our bus. I drive a J4500 on Sundays. I know how comfy those seats are! We'll pay for shipping too!!!!

Let us know. We promise to give them a great home!

M
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Old 03-06-2017, 07:44 PM   #7
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I'd love to have a (curb/streetside), but sadly I'm on the other end of the country
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Old 03-07-2017, 07:39 AM   #8
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Are you going to repurpose the seats? If not could we ask/beg/give the puppy-dog-eye treatment () for two sets - one driver side one passenger side set of seats?
Sorry M, a fellow from Craigslist drove off with all of them yesterday morning.
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Old 03-09-2017, 09:11 AM   #9
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Destruction continues!

WOW! Those racks are far more work than I had imagined! Those things are made of two giant aluminum extrusions that are 40' long. Heavy! Oh man! Stay out of the way when they fall!! Of course, getting them to fall is not even easy. Two types of steel rivets and a bunch of bolts.



The only way I knew to deal with them was to cut them into more manageable lengths.

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Old 03-09-2017, 11:43 AM   #10
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Sorry M, a fellow from Craigslist drove off with all of them yesterday morning.
RATS! Curses Craigslist CURSES!!!!!!
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Old 03-09-2017, 02:36 PM   #11
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good looking bussss!!!! I have my eye on a local 1985 MCI at a great price I'm just worried its going to be much harder to convert than a school bus. Cant wait to see how yours looks!! Congrats!
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Old 03-10-2017, 10:24 AM   #12
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good looking bussss!!!! I have my eye on a local 1985 MCI at a great price I'm just worried its going to be much harder to convert than a school bus. Cant wait to see how yours looks!! Congrats!
Thank you! I suspect an older school bus is about as easy as it gets (not to say that is "easy"). The newer the bus, the more complex the systems are. Figuring out how to deal with them is proving a challenge for me. The engine driven air conditioning is one such system. I see very little need for it and it consumes a lot of space. However; tearing it out will be a project and a half!
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Old 03-12-2017, 10:32 PM   #13
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Destruction continues!

WOW! Those racks are far more work than I had imagined! Those things are made of two giant aluminum extrusions that are 40' long. Heavy! Oh man! Stay out of the way when they fall!! Of course, getting them to fall is not even easy. Two types of steel rivets and a bunch of bolts.



The only way I knew to deal with them was to cut them into more manageable lengths.

I agree, those parcel racks are heavy and made to stay in there FOREVER! I took a video of ours coming down and the noise they made hitting the floor was deafening! Your bus is looking GREAT! Keep the pictures coming!
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Old 03-13-2017, 06:07 AM   #14
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Thanks W&W!

Lots of progress this past weekend! I'm still in the deconstruction phase so that progress seems backwards but Missy is looking better nonetheless.









Getting those heat ducts out is going to be a real pain. All of the hex bolt heads are stripped so I guess I'm going to cut them all off. Access is very poor so I'm hoping either the reciprocating saw or the oscillating saw will do the trick. If not, maybe a small dab of C4 on each of them!
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:56 AM   #15
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Did you sell them or just give them away for free? If you sold them, how much did they go for? Thanks!
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:58 AM   #16
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Sorry M, a fellow from Craigslist drove off with of them yesterday morning.

I meant the seats 😋 forgot the quote
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:02 PM   #17
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I meant the seats 😋 forgot the quote
I gave them away for free. They were loose but the person had to haul them out of the bus. Lifting is not my forte' any longer.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:18 PM   #18
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I gave them away for free. They were loose but the person had to haul them out of the bus. Lifting is not my forte' any longer.
I'd rather have someone do all the heavy lifting than me 😉 Good info, now I know what to out in the CL add. Thank you for the info!
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Old 03-14-2017, 01:06 PM   #19
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I'd rather have someone do all the heavy lifting than me 😉 Good info, now I know what to out in the CL add. Thank you for the info!
We were able to sell some of ours. I put them on CL in the gaming area and some man purchased them for his home theater. He paid $100 for 4 of them. He loved them. You never know. Never hurts to try to sell first. We ended up scrapping the rest. Got about $80 for the load. They are heavy.
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Old 03-17-2017, 06:09 AM   #20
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The air ducts are out!!

These are a large aluminum extrusion that are held in place by a bunch of allen/hex head bolts. The bolt goes thru a special fitting that is welded to the frame and a very thin nut is on the other side. One can almost get a wrench on the nut but so much force is required to turn the bolt that the allen/hex key strips. There is not enough room to get anything else on the head of the bolt so, grinder to the rescue. The heads of all the bolts were ground off and then the extrusion pops off.



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