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Old 07-15-2021, 02:11 PM   #1
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MBE906 Bus Builds Newbie

Hello all,

Me and the family have finally decided to start our Skoolie build and are looking for a good bus. Could not be more excited!(Me at least) Local to us we have access to 4 40ft rear engine Thomas buses. all the same price. All have great tires, all have almost zero rust. All 4 start and run and where maintained and let go by a recent local school system and driven to the current location. All have the MBE906 Engine and Allison 3060 Transmission. All have dual cabin AC inside that seem to work.

I have read various articles here on the forum and elsewhere debating around the engine. Seems that most people are happy with the quietness, efficiency and the only knock being when they finally break parts and service can be more expensive and more complicated. This sound about right? My questions for you Pro's below:

Any difference in the 2004 vs 2006 model from an EGR or emissions standpoint? Anyway to check if they are governed other than going down the road? I dont wanna be only traveling at 55, 65 would be optimal and safe IMO. If so can I get the limiter taken off with software and tuner? Mileage on the 2004's are 171k, 159k, Mileage on the 2006's is 97k and 54k. Any reason to not just go for lowest Mileage? Anything else I should be wary about or simple things to check engine wise?

Thanks so much and sorry for being a noob. Looking forward to being part of this community!!

Chris

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Old 07-25-2021, 06:13 PM   #2
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Posts: 339
Year: 2001
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Engine: 3126b 210hp
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Originally Posted by Militades View Post
Hello all,

Me and the family have finally decided to start our Skoolie build and are looking for a good bus. Could not be more excited!(Me at least) Local to us we have access to 4 40ft rear engine Thomas buses. all the same price. All have great tires, all have almost zero rust. All 4 start and run and where maintained and let go by a recent local school system and driven to the current location. All have the MBE906 Engine and Allison 3060 Transmission. All have dual cabin AC inside that seem to work.

I have read various articles here on the forum and elsewhere debating around the engine. Seems that most people are happy with the quietness, efficiency and the only knock being when they finally break parts and service can be more expensive and more complicated. This sound about right? My questions for you Pro's below:

Any difference in the 2004 vs 2006 model from an EGR or emissions standpoint? Anyway to check if they are governed other than going down the road? I dont wanna be only traveling at 55, 65 would be optimal and safe IMO. If so can I get the limiter taken off with software and tuner? Mileage on the 2004's are 171k, 159k, Mileage on the 2006's is 97k and 54k. Any reason to not just go for lowest Mileage? Anything else I should be wary about or simple things to check engine wise?

Thanks so much and sorry for being a noob. Looking forward to being part of this community!!

Chris

Where are you located?

Virginia perhaps?
Some of those busses are limited by the rear end ratio. My loudoun county bus certainly is. She will go faster but the sweet spot is 52 mph. Iím unlocking 6th gear soon and I expect to cruise in the low 60s.

Peace
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Old 07-27-2021, 07:12 PM   #3
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Thanks Meathead!! Yes indeed is is one of those Loudoun County buses. That sucks to hear about the gearing and such. Even with 6th gear it can only do so much right depending on gearing? Mid 60's though should be fine cruising speed though. I saw your other thread on the 6th gear unlock steps. Very helpful and informative man so appreciate that.

Is your bus an MBE906 Mercedes or did you snag like a 466e or something?

Thanks again!!

NVM, I see its a 3126 in your thread if thats the one.
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Old 07-28-2021, 07:01 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Militades View Post
Thanks Meathead!! Yes indeed is is one of those Loudoun County buses. That sucks to hear about the gearing and such. Even with 6th gear it can only do so much right depending on gearing? Mid 60's though should be fine cruising speed though. I saw your other thread on the 6th gear unlock steps. Very helpful and informative man so appreciate that.

Is your bus an MBE906 Mercedes or did you snag like a 466e or something?

Thanks again!!

NVM, I see its a 3126 in your thread if thats the one.

I still donít have 6th gear. My Allison dealer has to get an unlock code from Allison. Then (I hear) itís just a key stroke to unlock 6th.

Truthseeker4449 has a build thread where he unlocks 6th gear himself. He discusses what a difference it makes.
Heís also near you in VA.

Also look up my explanation of how to bypass the Thomas vandalock system.

Peace
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Old 07-28-2021, 07:17 AM   #5
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I just read your post again. There may be a difference btw 04 and 06. IDK.

In general, I gather that 04 was the first year for some emissions regs.
A couple of years later may be better if they worked out the bugs. Maybe someone who knows about this can jump in here.

Peace
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Old 08-20-2021, 06:41 PM   #6
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Year: 2001
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Engine: 3126b 210hp
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I got my 6th gear.

Before. 55 mph @ 2200 rpm
Now 60 mph @ 1700 rpm.

Shifts at 55 mph.
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Old 08-20-2021, 06:52 PM   #7
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In general, I gather that 04 was the first year for some emissions regs.
A couple of years later may be better if they worked out the bugs.
EPA diesel emissions regulations have continued to get more stringent since '04, with major changes in '07 (including the introduction of a particulate matter standard), '10 and '15, so it's never really been a case of manufacturers working out the bugs and then having smooth sailing - rather, it's been a continuous moving target. Cat gave up without attempting to meet the '10 standards, while Navistar's attempts at the '10 standards led to a massive lawsuit against them and their eventual abandonment of diesel engines altogether.
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