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Old 04-16-2017, 08:37 PM   #61
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I'd stay away from the seattle ones especially the beat looking Cadet.
The AZ is top dollar retail. All have the GM 6.2 and 6.5 diesels that are meh.
medford is full on dealer price. The one in Lodi is my favorite, but I'd drive to TN for one with 20k or 40k if the price were the same. Maybe watch those auctions and see what the prices end up looking like in the last twenty minutes.

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Old 04-16-2017, 10:52 PM   #62
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Yup, number 3 and number 5 are my favorite of the five at a glance, but still aren't that great of deals price wise for the mileage.

Those older box face buses always look like old mail trucks.

If you have a choice, and you do, those low mileage buses in TN would still be the best choice considering they meet CA emission standards. If you're looking for a simple bus to drive those low mileage buses are your best bet for the money.

I've been watching the prices slowly climb up on those GMs. They are tempting at that low of mileage. I don't care for the cutaways or gassers, but one with that low mileage would help me get over my issues.

I've never watched auctions in TN before. So far these seem less expensive than prices I'd expect to see here on the west coast.

I've been seeing a lot of long busses with the 5.9 for sale. TN is the hot state right now.
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Old 04-17-2017, 03:49 AM   #63
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The 6.2L is a good engine for what it is. What it isn't is an engine for a vehicle of this size. We had four essentially identical to the Orcas Island bus. Under 35 MPH it was okay. Empty all of them struggled to maintain 55 MPH. The 350 small block powered buses performed nearly as well IMHO in performance and in fuel cost.

The 6.5L is not a bad engine but it is a disaster in a bus. The rights to the engine along with all of the spare parts were sold by GM to Freightliner. Which means GM no longer stocks any parts and pieces for it and once the OEM new-old stock is sold off Freightliner isn't going to re-pop any of it. And because out of all of the production of the 6.5L, the production that was installed in G-series vans, van/cut-away, and rail chassis amounted to less than 10% of that particular diesel engine production there is virtually no after market sources for parts.

Of all of the buses you highlighted the only one that I would look at more than once would be the Lodi bus with the 6.0L gas engine. In service it generally got about 1-2 MPG less fuel economy than a diesel powered bus of the same size. The only real problem I see is the price is pretty high retail for a bus of that age and condition.

Good luck!
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Old 04-17-2017, 04:34 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Rhonda View Post
Thanks for the advice. I will keep searching the surplus and auctions, as well as, reading the forums.

The search continues...
Rhonda,
I bought my bus sight unseen off of Public Surplus and I couldn't be happier. I paid $2023 for a long bus. Keep looking and get the best bus for you and the kids...
Sandi
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Old 04-17-2017, 08:34 AM   #65
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Smile You guys are Awesome!

I really appreciate every reply I get. I learn something new with each post. This has been the best way to start this journey. Thanks, everyone.

I have been bidding on one of the 2005's in TN. I will continue to watch the auction.
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Old 04-17-2017, 08:38 AM   #66
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The two I've bid on are up to $3000 or so this morning. I'm gona have to probably back off soon.
But only due to being incredibly buried with work, projects, and I have little cash on hand at this point.
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Old 04-17-2017, 08:47 AM   #67
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there are some facebook groups to check out if it hasnt already been mentioned. you see partial and full conversions for the same price as these you are looking at.

facebook groups:

RV-Bus-Skoolie Conversions
Buses for sale by owner
Bus Conversions For Sale
RV Classifieds
Bus/RV Used Parts For Sale

there are more skoolie user groups as well.
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Old 04-17-2017, 10:34 AM   #68
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even with a gasser you have to make sure it is a 50 state bus according to CARB, or in california you atill may not be able to register it.. same goes for any units out of state.. before you bid, be sure to find that info out...

you are also coming into spring, where many schools start ditching busses.. sometimes theres ednough of them that the high-roller multi buyewrs like dealers and exporters cant get their hands on so many and you can get a SMOKIN deal on one..

as for Kids? wow im so glad that i got that Gene at birth which makes me not desire a woman-partner.. so therefore NO kids! ha!
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Old 04-19-2017, 09:02 AM   #69
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Question Engine?

Hey everyone,

It seems from what I have read here, that the Ford Diesel 6.0L engine is not highly regarded.

My question:

Is the 6.0L engine a deal breaker?

Does it require more maintenance?

What's the deal with it?

Here is a clean looking California bus. I contacted the guy and he said it has the 6.0L engine with 109K miles. I posted both links to the bus. You can see the reserve is meet on Ebay at $4,000 even though they are asking $6,500 on the craigslist ad.

2006 California school bus | eBay

https://inlandempire.craigslist.org/ctd/6092158091.html

Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-19-2017, 09:27 AM   #70
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The 6.0 has a few design flaws that will end the life of the engine. Those flaws can be corrected, but they aren't cheap or particularly easy. Look up "6.0 powerstroke bulletproof" for more info. Personally I don't have the time or will to mess with one, I need bulletproof from the factory

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Old 04-19-2017, 10:03 AM   #71
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Ronda, I own a cutaway shuttle bus with a gas engine. I use it for weekend camping trips and sometimes haul a trailer with ATV's. Was a really good choice for me. Shuttles are something you should consider (in my opinion). Take your time finding the right bus for you!
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Old 04-19-2017, 10:49 AM   #72
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There are lots of Ford shorties all over the country and they don't bring that much from the bus barns. However the conflicting information on eBay is where the F-450s sell for rediculously high prices.

With this large of an investment you shouldn't start out with a vehicle that has notorious problems with its engine, even at a cheap price, but the one you're looking at isn't all that cheap. If you're still looking in the $4,500 to $6,000 range you can find a much better bus to start with.

Ruth, are you thinking twice about your drive back from TN in a new to you vehicle?
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:14 PM   #73
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I have an F-350 I bullet-proofed. It cost about $4K. Since the work that engine breathes better, and I get better fuel mileage. I guess I'm always rooting for the diesel underdogs....... I love my 6.0L!

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Old 04-19-2017, 01:29 PM   #74
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There is a big bus auction in Dallas this weekend. I happen to be in the area, they claim to have like 40 shorties among other things. Not sure what options they have for online bidding but I am planning to have a look.

DETAIL AUCTION TERMS & EXAMPLE OF BANK LETTER
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Old 04-19-2017, 01:48 PM   #75
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there are a lot of 6.0s out there still on the road.. many of them with oiver 300k miles.. as are there lots of 7.3's still out there...

a lot of the 6.0's troubkles came in its first 2 years or production giving it a terrible reputation..

a lot of the 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance.. ie neglected coolant, oil changes, fuel filter changes...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance and then running them in Severe duty or worse... all stock parts with programmer chips, pulling big ass trailers in 100 degree heat at 75 MPH, driving the piss out of them, etc...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from people kniwing they had amn issue with say the oil temperature, or EGR cooler / EGR valve and continuing to drive it anyway

a lot of 6.0s took a bad "engine" rap when it was really the POS transmission that was behind it the first couple years... the forum post would read "my F-350 diesel SUX!!!".. first question.. "what motor?".. '6.0' - and they wouldnt read anymore to find out it was a transmission issue...

bulletproofing a partially bulletproofing a 6.0 will make it run for a long long time..!!

though ive been afraid of them in the past, owning a 7.3 (T-444E), the 6.0 No longer scares me... in fact i see short busses with the 6.0;s root-cousin (VT-365) all the time.. often Cheap! because of the perception...

Bulletoroofing a 6.0 isnt for someone who has never turned a wrench... esp in the tight confines of a Van-cutaway skoolie, its not rocket science, but you do have to take a LOT of stuff apart, including disconnecting and removing / reinstalling electronic bits..

the VT-365 is de-tunes compared to the ford 6.0 version so it didnt as often suffer the failures.. 230-250 max HP vs over 300 with Ford helped keep the head gaskets together... Most fleets want their trucks to last so they stick to very strict maint schedules which helped keep the EGR and oil coolers clean...

there are good and bad in ever yused bus / engine.. we have seen people on skoolie buy 7.3's and have dropped lifters, DT-466's that lost the coolant in the oil on thge maiden voyage.. , gas 350s with wiped cam lobes,

a lot of buying a Bus is the perception of that bus... if its pretty well thrashed out on the insde.. outside has a lot of dings and dents... it may have been neglected altogether..

if you can view a bus, or talk to a fleet manager and get info that helps greatly... a fleet manager has no skin in the game when an old bus goes to auction.. its gone from him and he has a brand new bus under warranty in its place.. so he is glad its one less he has to work on.. he has no reason not to tell you "that bus was a POS!!"
-Christopher
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Old 04-19-2017, 02:48 PM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin97396 View Post
There are lots of Ford shorties all over the country and they don't bring that much from the bus barns. However the conflicting information on eBay is where the F-450s sell for rediculously high prices.

With this large of an investment you shouldn't start out with a vehicle that has notorious problems with its engine, even at a cheap price, but the one you're looking at isn't all that cheap. If you're still looking in the $4,500 to $6,000 range you can find a much better bus to start with.

Ruth, are you thinking twice about your drive back from TN in a new to you vehicle?
I am not thinking twice about the drive. The prices on the buses in TN are starting to go up. They are already in the $3,000-$4,500 range, with a week to go.

Just looking around in case the buses in TN lose the cost/gain benefit of driving across country to get it or get out of my price range.

It's crazy you called me Ruth. My first name is Rhonda and that's how I introduced my self, way back on the first post, but my middle name is Ruth. That made my day. Too cool.
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Old 04-19-2017, 02:52 PM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhonda View Post
Hey everyone,

It seems from what I have read here, that the Ford Diesel 6.0L engine is not highly regarded.

My question:

Is the 6.0L engine a deal breaker?

Does it require more maintenance?

What's the deal with it?

Here is a clean looking California bus. I contacted the guy and he said it has the 6.0L engine with 109K miles. I posted both links to the bus. You can see the reserve is meet on Ebay at $4,000 even though they are asking $6,500 on the craigslist ad.

2006 California school bus | eBay

https://inlandempire.craigslist.org/ctd/6092158091.html

Thanks everyone.
Unless you're rich, a ford loyalist, and extremely technically inclined RUN AWAY from 6.0 Powerstrokes. They've put people in the poor house with repair bills. There's a reason they're so cheap to buy!
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Old 04-19-2017, 02:54 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by brokedown View Post
There is a big bus auction in Dallas this weekend. I happen to be in the area, they claim to have like 40 shorties among other things. Not sure what options they have for online bidding but I am planning to have a look.

DETAIL AUCTION TERMS & EXAMPLE OF BANK LETTER
Man, let me know if they have any nice fullsize shorties for me!!!!
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Old 04-19-2017, 02:56 PM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
there are a lot of 6.0s out there still on the road.. many of them with oiver 300k miles.. as are there lots of 7.3's still out there...

a lot of the 6.0's troubkles came in its first 2 years or production giving it a terrible reputation..

a lot of the 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance.. ie neglected coolant, oil changes, fuel filter changes...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance and then running them in Severe duty or worse... all stock parts with programmer chips, pulling big ass trailers in 100 degree heat at 75 MPH, driving the piss out of them, etc...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from people kniwing they had amn issue with say the oil temperature, or EGR cooler / EGR valve and continuing to drive it anyway

a lot of 6.0s took a bad "engine" rap when it was really the POS transmission that was behind it the first couple years... the forum post would read "my F-350 diesel SUX!!!".. first question.. "what motor?".. '6.0' - and they wouldnt read anymore to find out it was a transmission issue...

bulletproofing a partially bulletproofing a 6.0 will make it run for a long long time..!!

though ive been afraid of them in the past, owning a 7.3 (T-444E), the 6.0 No longer scares me... in fact i see short busses with the 6.0;s root-cousin (VT-365) all the time.. often Cheap! because of the perception...

Bulletoroofing a 6.0 isnt for someone who has never turned a wrench... esp in the tight confines of a Van-cutaway skoolie, its not rocket science, but you do have to take a LOT of stuff apart, including disconnecting and removing / reinstalling electronic bits..

the VT-365 is de-tunes compared to the ford 6.0 version so it didnt as often suffer the failures.. 230-250 max HP vs over 300 with Ford helped keep the head gaskets together... Most fleets want their trucks to last so they stick to very strict maint schedules which helped keep the EGR and oil coolers clean...

there are good and bad in ever yused bus / engine.. we have seen people on skoolie buy 7.3's and have dropped lifters, DT-466's that lost the coolant in the oil on thge maiden voyage.. , gas 350s with wiped cam lobes,

a lot of buying a Bus is the perception of that bus... if its pretty well thrashed out on the insde.. outside has a lot of dings and dents... it may have been neglected altogether..

if you can view a bus, or talk to a fleet manager and get info that helps greatly... a fleet manager has no skin in the game when an old bus goes to auction.. its gone from him and he has a brand new bus under warranty in its place.. so he is glad its one less he has to work on.. he has no reason not to tell you "that bus was a POS!!"
-Christopher
I REALLY don't think the OP is the type who really has any good reason to own a 6.0 ford diesel. There are so many more options that aren't a possible nightmare from hell that its just not something a mother and her kids are gonna wanna take on, IMO.
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Old 04-19-2017, 03:01 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cadillackid View Post
there are a lot of 6.0s out there still on the road.. many of them with oiver 300k miles.. as are there lots of 7.3's still out there...

a lot of the 6.0's troubkles came in its first 2 years or production giving it a terrible reputation..

a lot of the 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance.. ie neglected coolant, oil changes, fuel filter changes...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from neglected maintenance and then running them in Severe duty or worse... all stock parts with programmer chips, pulling big ass trailers in 100 degree heat at 75 MPH, driving the piss out of them, etc...

a lot of 6.0's issues came from people kniwing they had amn issue with say the oil temperature, or EGR cooler / EGR valve and continuing to drive it anyway

a lot of 6.0s took a bad "engine" rap when it was really the POS transmission that was behind it the first couple years... the forum post would read "my F-350 diesel SUX!!!".. first question.. "what motor?".. '6.0' - and they wouldnt read anymore to find out it was a transmission issue...

bulletproofing a partially bulletproofing a 6.0 will make it run for a long long time..!!

though ive been afraid of them in the past, owning a 7.3 (T-444E), the 6.0 No longer scares me... in fact i see short busses with the 6.0;s root-cousin (VT-365) all the time.. often Cheap! because of the perception...

Bulletoroofing a 6.0 isnt for someone who has never turned a wrench... esp in the tight confines of a Van-cutaway skoolie, its not rocket science, but you do have to take a LOT of stuff apart, including disconnecting and removing / reinstalling electronic bits..

the VT-365 is de-tunes compared to the ford 6.0 version so it didnt as often suffer the failures.. 230-250 max HP vs over 300 with Ford helped keep the head gaskets together... Most fleets want their trucks to last so they stick to very strict maint schedules which helped keep the EGR and oil coolers clean...

there are good and bad in ever yused bus / engine.. we have seen people on skoolie buy 7.3's and have dropped lifters, DT-466's that lost the coolant in the oil on thge maiden voyage.. , gas 350s with wiped cam lobes,

a lot of buying a Bus is the perception of that bus... if its pretty well thrashed out on the insde.. outside has a lot of dings and dents... it may have been neglected altogether..

if you can view a bus, or talk to a fleet manager and get info that helps greatly... a fleet manager has no skin in the game when an old bus goes to auction.. its gone from him and he has a brand new bus under warranty in its place.. so he is glad its one less he has to work on.. he has no reason not to tell you "that bus was a POS!!"
-Christopher
Quote:
Originally Posted by brokedown View Post
There is a big bus auction in Dallas this weekend. I happen to be in the area, they claim to have like 40 shorties among other things. Not sure what options they have for online bidding but I am planning to have a look.

DETAIL AUCTION TERMS & EXAMPLE OF BANK LETTER
Thanks for all this...
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