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Old 04-15-2016, 01:40 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
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Coolant line/electric/plumbing box?

So I have a 97 bluebird RE so I have coolant lines running to the front of the bus. I have removed on board heaters but have the lines running to the front of the bus to heat my defrosters. I was thinking about boxing off the coolant lines with some sort of reflectix type insulation and 2x4s or 2x6s. I was wondering if I couldn't have an additional extended box on top of this box that would run the length of the bus to run my plumbing and electric. Probably have from bottom to top coolant lines, plumbing, electric so that if either liquid line has an issue it doesn't drain onto electric. In terms of electric I plan on having fridge/freezer, some LED strips, roof AC, hot water heater, water pump, and a few outlets.

Keep in mind I don't know much of anything about plumbing or electrical and am just at a framing stage where I figured I would try to take this into consideration. As always I truly appreciate the help and will surely visit yall once we're on our countrywide road trip next year!

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Old 04-15-2016, 01:43 PM   #2
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Here is a picture. Coolant lines would be sitting on the ground tho



So the box would be like another stud too. I would cut all my counters and such to fit to the box
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:43 PM   #3
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Hey Eric, welcome.
Damn nice job so far. I recognize that floor. You've got 22.5" tires. I have the same size bus with no wheel wells on the floor inside, but 19.5" tires.

I'm not quite following the box on a box thing. Are you talking about two separate boxed channels for plumbing and electrical separately? I'm certainly not an expert but I have wired quite a number of breaker boxes. I know plumbing and electrical never go together if you can help it. You can get away with just about anything with your bus, but keep it safe. A water leak could take out your electrical system, and then you'd be in the dark trying to mop up all the water with you favorite quilt.
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:50 PM   #4
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probably the only thing that i wish i had running the length of the bus is an hvac delivery vent. i dont, i only wish i had.

most of my electric and plumbing run just above or just under the chair rail. the drains run under the bus.

eveything went different places, running common lines would have taken much more planning than i did.
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Old 04-15-2016, 04:11 PM   #5
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Well just wait till Cadillac comes and tells you what kind of air you need. He's good. there's quite a bit of discussion on the most efficient way to have air in your bus and you might be surprised.

Drains? My bus doesn't have drains. Oh, you have plumbing. I'm still in the barrel and bucket mode.
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Old 04-16-2016, 07:46 AM   #6
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So do most people just have the wiring and plumbing loose between the area just above or below the frame rail and the finished wall?
Also where's the common place for shore power and water hookups? The box running the length of the bus would be needed because the coolant lines. I wouldn't be running water the full length of the bus but unless it's fine to just have the plumbing and electrical loose between insulated wall and finished wall It seems to make sense to have them in the same enclosure. Now that I think about it though it's probably fine just sitting behind the finished wall. If it was in my box idea it would all be inside the bus not behind the finished wall
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Old 04-16-2016, 07:59 AM   #7
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at this point you could plan to run a length of pvc conduit from front to back with a couple t's along the way, this would make great wire chase for future part of your build and is easyway to protect wires. I used pex for all h2o lines so far, so really you could run a second piece of conduit and do same thing with the water lines. hell you could get a larger diameter pvc and run an HVAC line too, just put the t's in where you want air. at this point in your build you have great chance to put them in and be able to build around them. great lookin bus so far.
robin how the heck you know what size wheels he has?? lol smh
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Old 04-16-2016, 11:44 AM   #8
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Previously I'd been watching a build in soCal that appeared to be the same bus as mine, but it had the four wheel wells showing through the floor while my bus has a completely flat floor. I became curious to know what the difference was. When the opportunity presented itself I went to a bus reseller and looked at a bus just like mine, except it had higher ground clearance and all four wheel wells intruded into the passenger area like I had previously seen on the soCal build.
The tires were 22.5" while mine are 19.5". It's the same as my bus except I have a completely flat floor, same engine, same tranny, same body.
This being my fifth bus I was very attracted to the completely flat floor, which is a no brainer if you consider it was a special needs or wheel chair bus. It would be difficult at best to deal with wheel wells in a special needs bus if you're in a wheel chair.
I'm still learning. It was just differences I noticed on these medium size FE Bluebirds.
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Old 04-16-2016, 01:00 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Robin97396 View Post
Previously I'd been watching a build in soCal that appeared to be the same bus as mine, but it had the four wheel wells showing through the floor while my bus has a completely flat floor. I became curious to know what the difference was. When the opportunity presented itself I went to a bus reseller and looked at a bus just like mine, except it had higher ground clearance and all four wheel wells intruded into the passenger area like I had previously seen on the soCal build.
The tires were 22.5" while mine are 19.5". It's the same as my bus except I have a completely flat floor, same engine, same tranny, same body.
This being my fifth bus I was very attracted to the completely flat floor, which is a no brainer if you consider it was a special needs or wheel chair bus. It would be difficult at best to deal with wheel wells in a special needs bus if you're in a wheel chair.
I'm still learning. It was just differences I noticed on these medium size FE Bluebirds.
nice, i was just wondering if you were a bus whisperererer
that awesome your 5th bus! killer. can we see pics of them?? would love to see your previous builds, you seem very knowledgeable.
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Old 04-16-2016, 04:14 PM   #10
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I've still got a good mechanic's ear, but whispering through the internet about someone else's bus is far beyond me. This was all based on pictures.
I started out by redoing really ratted out short buses that I was picking up at auction for like $400. I only used buses as vans for hauling the kids bikes and trips to the state fair and stuff.
Lots of people don't like my build methods. I'm kind of a minimalist after changing buses this many times. I could take a dolly and roll all my things into another bus in about a half hour. Kind of modular furnishings not so much into the build.
I am stripping out this current bus, acquired last October, now that it's warmer weather. I plan to insulate heavily. I was cold last winter. My past buses seemed warmer, but that was before I moved to a higher elevation.
I was a diesel specialist team leader many years ago, but that was way different equipment. I might be an expert on that old equipment if I could remember that much stuff. I basically know nothing about buses other than what I've learned here. Most of it seems like common sense, but there are some unique ideas tried at times. It's pretty cool that everybody shares like this.
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Old 04-16-2016, 06:25 PM   #11
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Personally, I would run your electrical channel above the windows, or closer to the top of the bus. Centerline roof would be best, but you've got the cutout exits there to run around.

Running your electric up top will: a) keep it far away from fluids of any kind, b) allow you to branch off where needed for various circuits, c) your electrics will probably require more frequent modifications and additions than your plumbing will, so it should generally remain easier to access than conduit of some sort buried behind furniture which may or may not be permanently mounted or otherwise a major PITA to remove just to tap into a single line, or make a drop.

If you keep your plumbing tightly constrained, you could run it close to the coolant lines to help keep them from freezing, but the contamination is a risk I, personally, would not want to take.

Your access panels are commonly located on the driver's side, towards the rear, at least in smaller rv's, larger buses will be located in the rear, but closer to the mid-point.
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Old 04-16-2016, 06:42 PM   #12
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agree, all my electric along with my h20 feed line from tanks are all ran high of the windows so i can get to them if needed.
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Old 04-16-2016, 07:42 PM   #13
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agree, all my electric along with my h20 feed line from tanks are all ran high of the windows so i can get to them if needed.

this is what I use for running linesets, wires, etc.. in fact with a tad bit of sealant( like rubber cement.. (clear)).. you can even use it as ducting if you need to run heat or cool air someplace in your bus..

http://www.alpinehomeair.com/related...nnel_Specs.pdf


I painted it "blue-bird" tan and used it for some custom Dash A/C ducting in the last bus... its main design is for wires, heater lines, refrigerant lines etc.. its UV safe, paintable, and durable to all temperature conditions...

-Christopher
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Old 04-19-2016, 08:25 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
this is what I use for running linesets, wires, etc.. in fact with a tad bit of sealant( like rubber cement.. (clear)).. you can even use it as ducting if you need to run heat or cool air someplace in your bus..

http://www.alpinehomeair.com/related...nnel_Specs.pdf


I painted it "blue-bird" tan and used it for some custom Dash A/C ducting in the last bus... its main design is for wires, heater lines, refrigerant lines etc.. its UV safe, paintable, and durable to all temperature conditions...

-Christopher

I like this idea. I'm not too picky with appearance and being so inexperienced I could probably run this inside the bus and not behind the finished wall. This way I wouldn't have to remove any wall paneling if I needed to access the lines. Another perk is that I could finish my walls and ceiling (which I am excited about having done) and put a wood burning stove in as well as a bed and sleep in there
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