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Old 09-28-2016, 01:25 AM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 9
New member from Richmond

It's nice to see that there really is a forum for everything; and since this appeared to be one of the nicer bus-oriented ones I've come across. My name is Fred and I don't own a "skoolie" per say but I did manage to score a very abused 1989 E-350 shuttle bus for a song. Had it towed home and I've been tinkering with it as it sits in my back yard.

It's clear that this bus has had a very hard life. I don't know whether it was originally a church or an airport bus, but I found it on Craigslist looking for cheap vans with which to tow my race trailer. I will refrain from posting pictures of it yet due to the previous owner being under the influence of some sort of psychedelic drugs when he gave it its current rattle can paint job. It took hours cleaning out all of the junk that was inside it as well. All of the interior seats were removed except for the driver seat. I don't want to think about how long I spent peeling neon flower decals off of the interior walls.

Since then I have done a lot of work to the bus, fixing it's numerous issues while beginning the conversion of the interior to something I can live with until I can get it painted. Currently it will not start in spite of the fact that it has many new parts including starter, alternator and a good battery. It would seem that this bus has been fitted with elaborate modifications to the electrical system by the coach company that built it, so I will be trying to figure out exactly what went wrong.

Anyway, thanks for having me and hopefully I can glean the site of something useful that can put this baby back on the road so I can go racing.

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Old 09-28-2016, 01:50 AM   #2
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Posts: 9
Here are some details on my bus:

'89 E350 cutaway Camper 7500
5.8L EFI gas V-8
E40D automatic overdrive transmission
shuttle bus conversion by the National Coach Corporation
138" wheelbase, 4-windows per side

I tried to post some pictures of the interior conversion in progress but I suppose that the images were too big.
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Old 09-28-2016, 04:46 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Devon, Alberta, Canada
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Welcome to from Northern BC

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Old 09-28-2016, 09:40 AM   #4
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Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Greater Houston, Tx.
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Fred, I think you've found THE place to get info. on your dream. I'm new, as well, but have learned that it takes 4 or 5 posts, before you can get pictures shared.

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Old 09-28-2016, 10:05 AM   #5
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Posts: 9
Thanks guys. I think I'm going to have a lot of fun with my bus after I figure out what gremlins are in the electrical system. The no-start condition is the issue that caused it to be sold I'm sure. It would appear that this bus has had many of its systems rerouted to a relay panel built into the passenger side of the exterior next to the passenger door. The panel has three solenoids in it which resemble starter relays and about half a dozen little circuit breakers. There are a few more in the engine bay but the only battery is located in a drawer on the bottom of the bus, passenger side.

When I turn the key there is a clicking sound coming from that relay panel. I hear the same type of click when I turn on the lights from that same area. The CHECK ENGINE light is illuminated any time the battery is connected. The starter will try to engage however when the two terminals on the ignition relay are bridged; so that leads me to believe that the problem is in that relay panel or somewhere along the wire that leads from there to the starter relay.

Any insight on how these coach companies typically rerouted those electrical systems would be appreciated.
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