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Old 05-18-2018, 12:34 AM   #1
New Member
Phuriousgeorge's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Granbury, TX
Posts: 5
New coach bus owner & general new-owner questions

Hi all, been stalking for awhile now, as this has always been a dream of mine. I recently took a new position out of state and have had bad luck with the turning-around of properties, so decided "screw it!" I came upon a coach bus last month and after I had the owner complete some mandatory repairs, I picked up my new-to-me bus this last weekend.

I now own a 1996 Van Hool T815 with the Cummings M11 416K miles on the when the odometer stopped working on the trip up from Houstin (doh), but it ran beautifully and I'm excited to get to work!

My bus came with 2" ISO (Polyisocyanurate) insulation board, which I recognize has the reputation to degrade over-time and not work as well in colder climates. I don't have any experience with the product and the more I dig, the harder it seems to be able to find reliable degradation numbers for the existing ISO. That being said, I'm curious if y'all would recommend pulling all that out and what the recommended replacement insulation would be? I've seen people use everything from closed-cell foam, ISO board or XPS board with and without Reflectix.

Again, I've seen conflicting (and rather old) posts on the topic, but at the moment I'm planning on buying two Pioneer 12k BTU 115v inverter mini-splits. Now that time has gone by for those of you that have them, what's the verdict? I'm not planning on cutting out any of my windows and hoping the double-panes save my butt in the areas that aren't covered inside. Now that time has gone by for those of you that have them, what's the verdict?

Double-pane pain
Yeah, so some of those lovely double-pained windows are fogging. Is there any real DIY solution to this? Is this something a local glass shop could assist with? I'm not too worried by what's currently fogged except for one part. The driver's slide-window has one of the slides that's pretty-well completely fogged. In order to be able to drive it home comfortably, I had to open both slides and have them meet in the middle so I could see out the side for turns and reliably see the mirror. The prior owner also removed a pane from the entry door (I have the glass in the case I can get it back in).

To rip it out or not to rip it out...
If I do rip it out or not, when adding my selected flooring, I'm assuming I should I ensure all the existing access hatches are still accessible?

Floor Plans
I never like plagiarizing, rather grab inspiration from available sources. For the time being, I'll be putting a temporary wall across the back 1/4 or so of the bus to live in, while I finalize plans and start the conversion process on the rest. Was hoping y'all might have some great floor plans for inspiration! (And yes, I've seen Offgr1d's bus and I'm totally drooling. She's got 5' on my bus ;))

Trailer Wiring
So, a question I haven't seen around here - How to convert 24v coach tail lights for 12v trailer use?

The common (and great) answer I've seen is Craig's awesome converter (chatting with him via email - great guy):
Towing Receiver Hitch

I'm curious though, if anyone has had any experience with alternate solutions such as voltage converters or products like this:

Aside from all the above, lucky for me, the prior owner had already gotten a lot of the hard work out of the way and removed the interior. I'll be tracking down a 24v tail light and some marker lights that aren't operating, tracking down the odometer issue, pulling out all the remnant interior pieces the prior owner left for me in the belly, and gutting the old HVAC/radiant heat system out, so if anyone wants Van Hool HVAC parts/compressor, radiant heat distribution parts, or 3x overhead A/Cs, I'm about to have a yard-sale lol.

I'm a Jack-of-All-Trades by trade, but a Quality Engineer by title, so I tend to put more time into research than I do actual application and realize I don't know everything. I'd rather spend an extra $100 now to avoid spending $1,000 to replace a bad solution later, so I'm open to any and all input!

P.S. Attached a photo of my fiberglass beast (well that didn't work -
P.P.S. I suck at naming... suggestions? Smiley

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Old 06-18-2020, 04:29 AM   #2
Bikeboyz's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2019
Location: Orlando Fl
Posts: 23
Year: 2001
Coachwork: Van Hool
Chassis: C2045
Engine: Cummins M11
Rated Cap: 47,000
Hello Mr. Phuriousgeorge,
My name is Mycheall Hamlet. I have just brought a 2001 c2045 Van Hool. Like you I am a jack of all trades but Computer Systems Engineer by title. I am asking if I can start a conversation with you about what you have learned and what advice you can give me. I am pretty ambitious about my project, roof raise, 2 slides, heavy duty solar setup. I could use any experience you would care to share. My contact info is below. Please feel free to contact me via email or phone. Thank you in advance for any of your time and consideration.

Mycheall Hamlet
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Old 06-18-2020, 09:19 AM   #3
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Mud Lake, Idaho
Posts: 125

Check out this couple's channel, they bought a converted coach and gutted it and are rebuilding it from the ground up. Lots of good info.
84chevyguyid is online now   Reply With Quote

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