Originally Posted by cadillackid
what did they use for shifting? was it just sloppy as heck or was it an air shifter?
Most of the eastern built Type 'D' buses that were sold in WA state before about 1985 were on OEM vendor supplied chassis. The most common one in WA state was on the GMC RE bus chassis. The shift linkage consisted of two bell cranks that went through a pin and clevis every 5' to 10'. By the time the bus had 100K miles on the bus that each hole a pin went through was wollered out a little. Multiply that slop over the multiple number of pins and you ended up with a LOT of slop. The gear shift lever could move more than 12" before anything in the transmission started to move.
We had one Carpenter Corsair RE that when the driver, who was about 5' tall, would reach to grab 4th gear her head would go down below the dashboard. The bus garage got many calls about the driver driving down the road with her head not visible to other drivers. On that bus reverse was up and to the right. When she had to go into reverse she sort of threw the gear shift in the general direction of reverse and then kicked it with her foot the rest of the way. She would hook her foot on the gear shift to pull it back out of reverse. Her arm was just too short to reach that far while keeping her seat belt fastened. We looked at adding an extension on the end with a bend to come back towards the driver's position. But it was just as sloppy on the near side. You never used deep low which was up and to the left. When you shifted from 2nd into 3rd which was down and to the left you would have to lift your hip a little to get the gear shift over and down far enough to go into gear.
The IHC OEM vendor supplied RE bus chassis used a single shaft to shift the Fuller transmission. The IHC chassis was heavier duty than the GMC so everything about it felt more solid.