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Old 05-24-2019, 03:02 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: south east BC, close to the Canadian/US border
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Year: 1975
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cruise control might indicate highway gears?

at a guess, would cruise control on a bus indicate it is geared for highway speeds? (229,000 miles )

1997 Thomas Navistar DRW Bus
Make: Thomas Model: Navistar DRW Bus
Drivetrain: Ext Color: Yellow
Engine: T444E Odometer Reading: 369497 Km
Transmission: 5 Speed Vin: 1HVBBABM1VH472574
Lot Number: TBD Fuel: Diesel
Description: 54 Passengers , Cruise
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Old 05-24-2019, 03:13 PM   #2
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I would think that cruise and a 5 speed transmission would be good clues indicating a highway capable bus but not a certainty.

You could call Thomas with the vin# and ask. From the VIN they should be able to lookup the original build sheet.

Edit: Nice looking bus but I had assumed that it had a 5 speed auto which would have been am MD-3060. Better call Thomas.....
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Old 05-25-2019, 08:57 AM   #3
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Location: Fingerlakes region NY
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Year: 1999
Coachwork: AmTran/Wolfington
Chassis: 3800
Engine: International DT466E 190HP variant
Rated Cap: 72 pax 29500 GVWR
Really depends on what you consider highway speeds haha.

55MPH is what I consider highway, and my bus can do 62 @ redline on the flats (I don’t push it that far). Problem is all the main highways here have a 65MPH limit so I’m below highway speeds!

If you’re comfortable cruising at 50-55 then I’d wager that bus can do 60 based on the fact it has cruise.
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Old 05-25-2019, 09:13 AM   #4
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I agree with Wargear, 'highway speed' means something different to different people. The presence of cruise control suggests that the bus was spec'd for longer trips like a team bus but that doesn't necessarily mean its geared to do 70mph. The T444E I think was usually paired with the MD3060 (someone can check me on that given the model year) and the MD3060 is physically a 6-speed with 6th gear locked out in school bus applications but can be unlocked via software by a Freightliner dealer (FL and Thomas are Daimler brands).
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:27 AM   #5
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Location: Dawsonville, Ga.
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Year: 1999
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I honestly believe my bus will do 100mph. I had it hardly breathing at 85mph at about 2200rpm. Just sayin
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Old 05-25-2019, 11:37 AM   #6
Bus Nut
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Location: Philadelpiha Pennsylvania
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Engine: DT-466 7.6L Turbo Diesel
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Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
I honestly believe my bus will do 100mph. I had it hardly breathing at 85mph at about 2200rpm. Just sayin
My bus has cruise. It will do 70 at close to 2600rpm, but feels in it's groove at 45 right around 1800rpms.
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Old 05-25-2019, 12:14 PM   #7
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Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 3,016
Year: 2003
Coachwork: International
Chassis: CE 300
Engine: DT466e
Rated Cap: 65C-43A
My bus has a spoiler in addition to cruise control, which (I'm hoping) means it goes really fast. Someday I hope to be able to drive my own bus and find out!

Edit: sorry, SPOILER ALERT
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Old 05-25-2019, 12:28 PM   #8
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Cruise control dash buttons came on ALL t444E regardless of gears.. if its a 5 speed manual then its 99% chance of being a spicer 5 speed which is still 1:1 final drive.. cruise control function can be enable or disable via the computer program .. the same buttons are used for throttle lock when stopped for setting an idle speed..

you have the VIN, call a navistar dealer and ask what trans and rear gears and tire size came on it should give you an idea of what its top speed would be...

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Old 05-25-2019, 09:33 PM   #9
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 51
my t444 bus has the 4 speed at545, and a cruise control switch I've never used, cause it goes 66 on the freeway with my foot all the way down. I've read, and heard from at least one highly qualified tech, that the t444e is happiest at it's 2700rpm governed rev limit. I can verify that with a year's worth of coast to coast touring as well, but i'm broke down right now to be fair lol
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