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Old 04-23-2024, 06:26 PM   #1
Almost There
 
Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Calgary
Posts: 76
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: 5.9L Cummins
Is it possible that my engine wont have enough power to climb a steep hill?

Years ago before I knew what I know now, I bought a 2000 Bluebird TC2000 with a 5.9L and an allison 545. I know, not a great setup but thats how she rolls.

My question is this: We want to camp at a friend's property that has a very steep access road.

Is it possible that my bus may not have enough power to actually get up and out of the access road?

There isnt much room for accelerating to the base of the climb, you pretty much have to start from a dead stop.

What would be your best approach? Doesnt help that we would have full waste tanks at that point from camping all weekend...

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Old 04-23-2024, 09:25 PM   #2
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Suppose it is possible

Keep the the throttle on the floor, do not spin the tires if you can help it.

If you canít do it the first run. Attach a tow vehicle to help.

Can you winch up?

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Old 04-24-2024, 08:35 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: West Ohio
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Year: 1984
Coachwork: Bluebird
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Engine: 6.9 International
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what surface is the access road?

Paved or concrete should be no issue. So long as everything on the bus is in correct working order. You have a torque converter that will give you the torque you need to ascend steep grades. You won't do it quickly, or forever, but it should get you up there.

Gravel or dirt can become a traction issue. Not really a school bus's fault for having that, they weren't designed for it.
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Old 04-24-2024, 09:45 AM   #4
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Chassis: 31 ft. HDX
Engine: CAT C7 250 hp
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Old 04-24-2024, 10:58 AM   #5
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Join Date: Apr 2015
Location: Calgary
Posts: 76
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: 5.9L Cummins
We successfully got in and out a couple years ago but I didnt have my flooring, ceiling or 1000L freshwater tank installed yet.. Quite a bit more weight.

Its a gravel access road.
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Old 04-24-2024, 11:11 AM   #6
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Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
if you are running buried more than 15-20 seconds with the bus barely moving, then the transmission is more likely to be the failure point.. the revs will be high enough that the engine wont burn up.. but you'll definitely be making that 545 trans stress out.. now if its just a driveway where it takes 10 seconds to go up.. then just punch it and go...

the reverse gear on a 545 is a lower ratio than first.. so you'll have more torque if you can go backwards up the hill..
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Old 04-24-2024, 08:11 PM   #7
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Join Date: May 2023
Location: Canada
Posts: 319
Year: 2001
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: T444E, Allison 2000
Rated Cap: 72
How long is the driveway and what grade?

1000 liters I think is 2200lbs, floor and ceiling.....say another 1000lbs. If it climbed up with ease last time around and the water tank is in the rear.....one would think it could do it again.
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Old 05-02-2024, 07:48 PM   #8
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Location: Massachusetts, Maine and North Carolina
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Year: 2011
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Chassis: Chey express 3500
Engine: 6.0
Sounds like a traditional hike and camp the old fashion way with tents. Park bus on the closest level ground use as base camp. Or spend more money and convert to 4x4. Use bulldozer to level terrain. None of these are your best choices.
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