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Old 04-12-2020, 07:02 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2019
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Does Such a Beast Exist?


I am looking for a mid chassis or 3/4 length Rear Engine school bus. What would be the biggest engine and best Tranny Combo. Looking to travel mountainous regions. Open to suggestions. Thank you in advance.

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Old 04-12-2020, 07:25 AM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 23,779
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
My friend Dave has a 32-ish foot RE Thomas with an 8.3 Cummins. Its one of my favorite buses of all time. Keeps the horrible clattery noise of the Cummins in the back lol! Any transmission other than a 545 is fine with me but if you want the BEST find one with a 3060. I'm not brand loyal about engines. Any Cat, Cummins, Or Navistar before 2004 is fine for me when bus shopping. Condition is more important than brand. A well kept pre-emissions bus is worth getting and holding onto.
His is from somewhere in VA. IDK where to tell you to look. Shorter RE's aren't super common. You'll either look for a good while or pay a lot or both. Or get lucky.

Patience and vigilance with get you the prize.

If you lose patience and want to look at other options consider a CE. They're pretty easy to find and have some advantages of their own.
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Old 04-12-2020, 10:23 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 1,259
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American
Engine: 8.3 Cummins ISC
Rated Cap: 75
Macalister had several C7 Bluebird AARE pushers in their used lot when I was there last spring. They had AC and a mid-ship WC door but they were RUSTY.



Probably the only time where I've seen a mid length pusher in the wild.
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Old 04-12-2020, 11:50 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Western Oregon
Posts: 876
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Blue-Bird
Chassis: TC RE 3408
Engine: 5.9 Cummins 12V Mechanical/Allison MT643
Rated Cap: Blue-Bird says 72 pass.
I don't know if 35 feet is considered mid-length or not, but I have a 35 foot Bluebird. I saw a 30 foot Bluebird, but it was FE and had a wheelchair lift, so I was not interested in that one.
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Old 04-19-2020, 09:33 AM   #5
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CE?? Center engine?

Thank for the info
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Old 04-19-2020, 09:40 AM   #6
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Western Oregon
Posts: 876
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Blue-Bird
Chassis: TC RE 3408
Engine: 5.9 Cummins 12V Mechanical/Allison MT643
Rated Cap: Blue-Bird says 72 pass.
I wondered about that myself, but since I am not shopping for a bus....
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Old 04-19-2020, 09:44 AM   #7
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 23,779
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Land Cruiser View Post
CE?? Center engine?

Thank for the info
Conventional engine.
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