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Old 11-03-2017, 02:49 PM   #1
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Southwest Michigan- New to Skoolies

Hello Everyone! My wife and I are in the process of purchasing a school bus to convert into an RV. As we gather all these ideas and plans I was hoping to get to know some people around Michigan that may already have a bus or are part of the skoolie culture. It would be great to actually see some skoolies and get some ideas other than just photos.

This is my first post so not sure how many responses, if any, that I may get but either way my name is Ben and my wife is Kathryn. We have three young kids and are super excited to become a bus owner.

I am an elementary principal and my wife is a nurse. We live just south of Kalamazoo.
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Old 11-03-2017, 08:12 PM   #2
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Welcome to the madness. Read, read, read.
Lots of knowledgeable friends here, that are always ready to steer you right, on your build. We DO require a lot of pictures, but remember you have to have 5 (I think) posts before you can post a picture, so ask away.
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Old 11-03-2017, 11:31 PM   #3
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Hey guys!

We ride the short bus over in Farmington Hills. Come visit if you're over this way.
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Old 11-04-2017, 07:35 AM   #4
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Hi Ben and Kathryn,
We're Drew and Kristen, we live just west of Chicago but our bus is stored by the Indiana border about 2 1/2 hours from Kalamazoo. We're just starting on our conversion, our intro is in "Introducing Dazzling Blue." It's slow going having the bus so far from us, but we've gotten the walls insulated and are tackling the numerous leaks and other projects as we can. You're welcome to check it out if you ever feel like a bit of a road trip.
Welcome!
Kristen
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Old 11-04-2017, 07:38 AM   #5
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Location: Andrews,Indiana
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Not in Michigan, but I'm in northeastern Indiana about 30 miles SW of Ft Wayne. After next week I'll be home 'till spring.
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Old 11-04-2017, 08:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Onlyfordguy View Post
Hello Everyone! My wife and I are in the process of purchasing a school bus to convert into an RV. As we gather all these ideas and plans I was hoping to get to know some people around Michigan that may already have a bus or are part of the skoolie culture. It would be great to actually see some skoolies and get some ideas other than just photos.

This is my first post so not sure how many responses, if any, that I may get but either way my name is Ben and my wife is Kathryn. We have three young kids and are super excited to become a bus owner.

I am an elementary principal and my wife is a nurse. We live just south of Kalamazoo.
My advice is don't jump on the first bus you see because its local.
If there's a lot of rust, or rust in critical areas its not worth converting.
A buddy from Cadillac MI bought his mom's route bus when she retired. I've never in my life seen a vehicle so absolutely destroyed by rust.
Just a word of warning since you're right in the rust belt.
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Old 11-06-2017, 08:03 AM   #7
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Thanks for the advice. I will definitely keep an eye out for that.
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Old 11-20-2017, 09:13 PM   #8
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I'm in Kalamazoo. Bus in process of conversion. You may come check ours out. I work retail so getting to a busy time but I will be quitting my job february or March and finishing our bus 😊
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Old 01-18-2018, 06:36 PM   #9
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Year: 1991
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Glad to meet you guys we are north of Grand Rapids MI,
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Old 01-19-2018, 10:00 AM   #10
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I assume you know you are close to the many RV surplus places around Elkhart?

This isn't too far from you either, if you'd consider going that route.

(Not that you SHOULD go that route, just saw it a while back. Have seen others for less, but needed more work. Seems to be close to a ground up Skoolie budget.)
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Old 01-19-2018, 10:37 AM   #11
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I can't wait to.finish my list and hit some of these surplus venues for parts, trying to learn from here the beat options for water systems at the moment.. then go after the tanks and heater what not..I gotta figure out how to put up pics haha
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:59 PM   #12
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Just so happens I was talking corrosion with my brother last night. Thought the mention of corrosion in this thread. He mentioned seeing a map of severity. 1 google search later, I found what he was talking about. Bad news for us Michiganders in the "severe" area. But some good news too, we don't have to travel too far to see much less rust.
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Old 02-06-2018, 08:24 PM   #13
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Onlyfordguy you pick up your rig yet?? What are you guys looking for?
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Old 02-17-2018, 07:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ennonne View Post
Just so happens I was talking corrosion with my brother last night. Thought the mention of corrosion in this thread. He mentioned seeing a map of severity. 1 google search later, I found what he was talking about. Bad news for us Michiganders in the "severe" area. But some good news too, we don't have to travel too far to see much less rust.
I live in South Bend, IN and I am willing to bet that this graphic is whack. If you've ever been up into Northern Michigan, you would know that they get a lot fo snow as well and have got to be a rust zone too! I'd prefer to go South when I'm ready to buy a bus. I may be wrong, but I feel like the odds are better of finding a cleaner bus (in terms of rust).

That being said, I am in the planning stages but would love to see some of your builds! My wife is now on board with the bus idea, but we have also never been in a converted bus haha.

- Jason
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Old 02-23-2018, 08:54 PM   #15
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Hi, we are Bill and Bonnie in Birch Run, MI. Our bus is almost done. It is a flat front Bluebird TC2000.

If you get out this way stop in. We are only about 1 mile off I75. Near Frankenmuth.
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Old 03-05-2018, 06:07 PM   #16
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I live in Branch county, which is one of the reasons for getting a bus. Need to get away from here, lolz. When I do finally get a bus of my own I plan to boondock around Michigan and northern Indiana while I fine tune things with the bus.
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Old 09-17-2018, 06:37 PM   #17
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More than happy to give some ideas

We have a bus in Jenison, right by Grand rapids. 45 mins. We have some rough framing and some built in and some flooring. Super simple but I would be happy to show it off. If you want to check us out, boombusandus on Facebook or Instagram.
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