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Old 10-17-2014, 01:22 AM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 1
Shopper Needs Advice

Hello, I'm a newbie to the bus world, so please be gentle. I am kicking off a new business that will need a bus. We will be doing a mobile vintage clothing bus that will see travel to vintage shows in California, from SW Colorado. Our budget is 20K. Key questions revolve around reliability, engine/transmission choice and driving comfort. Basically, treat me as if I was doing an RV conversion. That might be an easy way to think of what I'm doing. We have been perusing the internet and I feel better equipped to have this conversation now, than I did a few days ago. To get this started, we are interested in a 34 passenger, 2003 Thomas with 152K miles, Engine:Cummins 5.9 Liter Turbo Diesel, Transmission:Allison MD3060 5-Speed Automatic and a 32 passenger Blue Bird, with an 8.5 liter Cummins and 5 Speed Allison Automatic (ad does not specify model transmission and awaits my inquiry.)
These fit our budget and size needs. How am I doing?
Thanks in advance!

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Old 10-18-2014, 07:35 AM   #2
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EastCoastCB's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Eustis FLORIDA
Posts: 23,764
Year: 1999
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Freighliner FS65
Engine: Cat 3126
Rated Cap: 15
Re: Shopper Needs Advice

Check Ebay, There are a couple of retired Book-mobiles on there that may be just what you are looking for.
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Old 10-19-2014, 09:47 AM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Clearlake, Northern California
Posts: 2,510
Year: 1992
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: TC-2000 Frt Eng, Tranny:MT643
Engine: 5,9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 84
Re: Shopper Needs Advice

Me, I would certainly go with the bigger engine. (It is probably 8.3, not 8.5. The Cummins 8.3 is a very good engine.) The small engine is impressive for its size, but they are rather slow up-hill.
No worries about the transmission model, since all the 5-speeds have lock-up.

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Old 10-19-2014, 09:52 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Roswell, NM
Posts: 3,588
Year: 1986
Coachwork: BlueBird
Chassis: 40 ft All American FE
Engine: 8.2LTA Fuel Pincher DD V8
Rated Cap: 89
Re: Shopper Needs Advice

I'm partial to Blue Birds!
This post is my opinion. It is not intended to influence anyone's judgment nor do I advocate anyone do what I propose.
Fulltime since 2006
The goal of life is living in agreement with nature. Zeno (335BC-264BC)
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