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Old 05-14-2020, 06:06 PM   #1
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Question New Guy On The Block

My wife and I are late fifty to early sixties and are ready to buy a bus which will become our home, at least until we can find land we can afford and complete a shed to house project as a base of operations. We have been dreaming and drooling over skoolies for about 5 years now becasue it suits our "Always on the Move life style. Our current plans are to travel the states helping homesteaders with projects that are overwhelming them or beyond their current skill set. I have a background in mechanical work as well as a strong background in construction and have built homes from the footers to the chimney cap. Needless to say the bus build doesn't intimidate me, although I will need to get educated more on on solar. I am currently a pastor in a rural church which like most in my camp means very little funds to work with, so we are looking to get the basics in so we can title it as an RV an move in as soon as possible. At a later date we will add creature comforts to make it a home. I will likely use shore power and generator to start but want to have it wire ready for solar when I can afford it. Over the past few weeks I've been combing the used bus ads but I tend to get lost in the details, which is where I could use some help. I am wondering if someone could tell me if there is a particualr Make & Model Bus that would fit the following criteria, or for that matter, if they even make it or something similar to it.

Here is what I am looking for:
1) flat nose pusher
2) DT 466 engine or similar with Allision Auto/Trans ( input on tranny in a pusher would help as well)
3) Lenght: Min 28'/Max 35' prefer a 30'
4) Cargo space underneath that goes all the way through.
5) 78"ish ceiling height.
Any input on this would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 05-14-2020, 07:22 PM   #2
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I think the combo of things you're looking for is going to be rare, but others here will know better (I think 30' pushers are rare and high-ceiling ones rarer still but I dunno).

For your general criteria you'd want to add 2003 or older (2004 might be OK) and rust-free - which means you don't want a bus within 300 miles of where you are (my bus came from Buffalo by way of Syracuse).
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Old 05-15-2020, 04:01 AM   #3
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Cool Thanks for responding!

Buffalo is about about 40 northwest of me. My thoughts were looking for a bus from VA or lower PA area to start with and go out from there. Thanks for the other info. It sounds like I may need to adjust my criteria.
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Old 05-15-2020, 04:59 AM   #4
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Look south of the Mason-Dixon, stay away from PowerStroke 6.0 / VT365 and Navistar MaxxForce engines, and you should be fine. ;)

Remember that 04+ diesels are known for emission-control issues.
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Old 05-15-2020, 10:25 AM   #5
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how to look and where

I spend hours each day looking on face book market place for busses.... There are ten to fifteen in each state as a minimum... that is 500 busses across the country avery day..... some are van cut a ways. some are flat nose front engine called FE some are flat nose rear engine called RE some are flat nose and mid engine.. under the floor , like Crown, or Beck. there are some that are kinda odd like carpenter cadette or the rare Wayne Papoose. There is a conventional nose bus with the engine up front that looks like a pug, called a Vista, it is a conventional that wants to be a front engine flat nose, but didnt quite make it..... the bigger engines out there are 3208, 3116 3126 dt 530 dt 466 dt408 cummins 8.3 fuel pincher 8.2 ..... mechanical fuel injection engines... for the most part are pre 1995... will put up with a wider variety of fuels, and put up with less than super clean engine oil, than the electronic injection engines.

When I look in market place I use "bus" as a search word.... I use the search window that searches all categories in market place.

The second place is Ebay again I only use the search word "bus".

the third place is craigslist......

fourth place is face book groups that are bus and old car/truck related. I see busses there on a regular basis.

with four hours I bet I can find fifty busses for sale under 5,000 dollars some are biguns like ex grey hound kind of busses to little cutaways.... the bigger busses dont seem to sell for as much as some of the smaller busses... bug busses have big expenses....

good luck.

I bought my 1954 and my 1958 busses from craigslist, but that was two years ago.... craigslist does not seem to be as active now.. I think that is because craigslist is not free for listing vehicles anymore.

william
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Old 05-15-2020, 01:28 PM   #6
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Thanks for responding!

Wow! That was some great info guys. I really appreciate it. I can see I need to adjust my search criteria a bit.
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Old 05-15-2020, 02:16 PM   #7
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Yeah, you really don't want anything from any place a lot of road salt is used. Use caution in areas where flooding is common as well. The government has been known to dump problem vehicles off on people. And there are unscrupulous dealers as well.
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Old 05-16-2020, 02:19 AM   #8
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One good thing about looking for/at buses right now is that the airfare is cheap.
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Old 05-16-2020, 08:14 AM   #9
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Don't know if its still for sale but this one might fit your bill


https://kalispell.craigslist.org/for...110912911.html
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Old 05-16-2020, 03:54 PM   #10
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That's the puppy! That seems like a reasonable price given that it has brand new tires. What's your thoughts on the Cat 7.2 engine? A friend of mine is on the local school board and they have some buses they are retiring. He said that can't get any thing for them becasue they have Cat engines in them and they have had a lot of issues with them. What I know about Cats are the parts I had to buy for skidders were crazy expensive.
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:21 PM   #11
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I am not a fan of the cats, but saying that if I had the cash I would buy it without a sec thought. It’s a 2000 I think so pre emissions.

Polson is a Beautiful part of the state. It’s on a res and am from what I have heard they take good care of there busses.
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Old 05-17-2020, 06:27 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigskypc50 View Post
I am not a fan of the cats, but saying that if I had the cash I would buy it without a sec thought. It’s a 2000 I think so pre emissions.

Polson is a Beautiful part of the state. It’s on a res and am from what I have heard they take good care of there busses.
I sent an email out to him to see if it is still available. Airfare now is only $200 so that could make it a possibility. Thanks for the heads up!
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Old 05-17-2020, 06:32 AM   #13
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Awesome, if you need any help/place to park let me know, Polson is a fair drive for me (225miles). I am just off I-90 about 35 miles, in Townsend.



Quote:
Originally Posted by PDBrandon View Post
I sent an email out to him to see if it is still available. Airfare now is only $200 so that could make it a possibility. Thanks for the heads up!
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