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Old 04-05-2018, 02:06 PM   #1
New Member
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1
Smile New to conversions but not new to travel


I have a feeling I will be spending a lot of time on this site in the coming weeks. We are a family of 8 (6 kids ages 11 and under with another due in the coming weeks). We spent a chunk of time last year travelling (26 states and 4 provinces over 3-4 months). The first bit was with our van and a tent trailer boondocking; the second bit was in hotels.
We then bought a 5th wheel to use with bunkhouse but don't like the idea of having to take two vehicles so have turned towards bus conversions.
Hubby is thankfully an engineer and crazy handy so I'm hoping we won't have too much difficulty in the process (although I'm not so green that I don't know we will have a ton of set backs along the way!)
Anyway, I just wanted to pop in and introduce myself before I start commenting and asking questions!

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Old 04-05-2018, 03:18 PM   #2
Bus Nut
johnbloem1974's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Montana/Texas
Posts: 681
Year: 1998
Coachwork: Crown by Carpenter
Chassis: International 3800
Engine: 230 HP DT 466e/MT 643!
Rated Cap: 16
Welcome to the madness! If you haven't yet, read as many different build threads as you can. It is really helpful to see different ideas and what works/doesn't work for different situations...
This forum has been instrumental in helping many people out(myself included) - welcome aboard and take lots of pics along the way.

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Old 04-07-2018, 04:19 AM   #3
Bus Crazy
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Winlcok, WA
Posts: 2,233
I can understand not wanting to have to drive two vehicles everywhere you go. With a bus conversion you would be able to tow a vehicle which would allow you a different vehicle to use while the "house" is set up.

With so many people along for the ride you are going to have to get very creative in how you set up the living arrangements. What works on a warm sunny day most probably won't work nearly as well on a cold rainy day.

There have been a few builds on here that have come up with some really neat ideas to transform sleeping spaces at night into living spaces during the day.

Regardless of how you lay things out you are going to have to design and build some sort of bunk bed arrangement. Even if you raise the roof two feet you are still going to have some pretty tight sleeping arrangements.

There is a company that has been doing just that for more than sixty years. They run their rigs all over the world and get a lot of repeat customers. So their arrangements must work for people. Each of their sleeping pods are 6x6x3.

You can see a few of their rigs here:

The most important thing you need to find is a bus with the biggest HP engine and high speed rear gearing. It is much less expensive to purchase a bus with those spe'c's than to "fix" it later.
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Old 04-07-2018, 09:46 AM   #4
Bus Crazy
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Spring Valley AZ
Posts: 1,343
Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 2 elderly children, 1 cat
Don, Mary and Spooky the cat.
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