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Old 04-03-2017, 09:11 AM   #1
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Skoolies in Austin?

Hey anyone in Austin who has a converted bus or who is in the process of converting? My fiancé and I are looking to transition from our rental home into a school bus home in the next 6 months.

We are talking to Charlie Kern in Denver ( ]https://youtu.be/4A_VSSiObj8[ ) about doing the conversion for us. But if you know anyone in Austin who has done one or who could help us, please let me know!

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Old 04-03-2017, 10:34 AM   #2
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Well chickadee020, here you are. I see you did your introductory post again. The first one must not have gotten through.

So what is it that you two are looking for? A long, medium or short bus? There are buses that are already built that are being sold, as well as partially completed builds by people that changed their minds. It's a lot of work and takes a lot of time to build a bus right.
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:02 AM   #3
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Hey Robin! I responded to your other reply, but here's so more thoughts about what we're trying to figure out...

I think we want a 39 footer since we plan on living in the bus full time.

I do want to be involved with the conversion of our bus home and to learn about everything as it's being converted which is why I'm hoping to find help in Austin. The guy in Denver is really cool but far away and hard to get a hold of.

We live in the suburbs of Austin so I feel intimidated about keeping the bus here and annoying neighbors, etc. We plan on moving out of this house once the bus is done.

A lot of people are suggesting a tiny house instead, but we really want to travel and a tiny house doesn't seem to be a good option for that.

I really appreciate this site and having input from people who are doing the bus home thing.

Thank you!
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:10 AM   #4
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Depending on where you are in the Austin Burbs, you may or may not run into issues with nosy/pissy neighbors. Many people in areas with HOA's are quick to whine. Best bet is to seek out a rental facility to store/work in. Bringing a big yellow bus home, then being told it has to be moved overnight can get complicated real fast so lining up a workspace first is highly advised.

Best of luck.
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:53 AM   #5
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Another thing to consider, in the Austin area, is that there are some tiny house communities in the area. (At least I think I have seen some on HGTV) You may want to check them out, and see if they accept busses. It's worth a try. You may also be able to have a landowner willing to let you rent some space. My thought is that you would have better luck East of town, or at least away from I35, and the hills, West. You never know, and there may even be some place there, too.
There are tiny house builders in the area, and they may be willing to let you use their place in exchange for letting them do some of your build.

Best of luck to ya'll
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:55 AM   #6
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IF you're interested in driving a couple of hours east on US 290, I might be able to help you locate a good builder. The gentleman is helping me with my build. IF we can have our buses going at the same time I suspect he'll have these projects done within six to nine months. Again, that's IF you're interested. If so, PM me....

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Old 04-03-2017, 12:20 PM   #7
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The tiny house folks I've contacted in the area so far have seemed very reluctant to get anywhere near a school bus home. I was just trying to find out from them if they knew any tiny house contractors who might be willing to help me, but they were so intent on convincing me that tiny houses are better than school buses that I could scarcely get a word in edgewise!

But those are all good suggestions, thank you 1olfart
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Old 04-03-2017, 12:33 PM   #8
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It figures that the tiny home people would discriminate against a converted bus. Probably just feelings of inadequacy since you'd have a big engine.

I don't like the way tiny homes overload a tandem axle trailer. I also do not understand how it's legal to pull those often nearly two story homes down the road. It seems that they'd be to tall, and why aren't they registered as trailer homes?
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Old 04-03-2017, 01:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin97396 View Post
It figures that the tiny home people would discriminate against a converted bus. Probably just feelings of inadequacy since you'd have a big engine.

I don't like the way tiny homes overload a tandem axle trailer. I also do not understand how it's legal to pull those often nearly two story homes down the road. It seems that they'd be to tall, and why aren't they registered as trailer homes?
I could be completely wrong...but I thought I had heard that the only real reason they build them on trailers is just to avoid the fees incurred in owning a home with a fixed foundation. Similar to how trailer homes work. They have wheels, but pretty much the only time they ever moved is when they came from the factory to their permanent home.

I don't think tiny home owners tow their homes that much. Most just find a small swatch of land they can own and then park the house there.
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Old 04-03-2017, 03:59 PM   #10
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Good point. It's on TV that they indicate traveling in their own little homes. I'd guess that traveling in a stick built home on a tandem axle trailer wouldn't end well over the long term. And we worry about wind drag in a bus?
I wonder how they escape the mobile home rules?
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:15 PM   #11
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I do not understand the difference between a mobile home and a tiny house? Seems that on some environmental ideas the tiny homes are better but no reason that you could not throw some more insulation and solar panels at a mobil single or double.

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Old 04-03-2017, 04:29 PM   #12
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Can you relocate a "mobile home" all by your lonesome, or is it either a legal or practical reality that you have to hire a service that does such things?
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:45 PM   #13
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Good point. It's on TV that they indicate traveling in their own little homes. I'd guess that traveling in a stick built home on a tandem axle trailer wouldn't end well over the long term. And we worry about wind drag in a bus?
I wonder how they escape the mobile home rules?
Its just a regurgitation of the "trailer lifestyle" in the 40's and 50's... That later gave rise to our nation's glorious trailer parks. The tiny house is just a way of making the trailer smaller and more expensive.
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:46 PM   #14
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Can you relocate a "mobile home" all by your lonesome, or is it either a legal or practical reality that you have to hire a service that does such things?
The "tiny houses" being built and sold for nearly six figures here are so large you'd pretty much need to call someone to move them.
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Old 04-03-2017, 06:00 PM   #15
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I pulled a 70' house trailer with my power wagon. Unbelievable that flathead 6 would do that. Apparently it is legal if you have all the appropriate lights, signs, etc.
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Old 04-03-2017, 07:16 PM   #16
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Power Wagons are COOL!
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:42 AM   #17
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my two cents.... you say the guy in Denver is so hard to get ahold of.... I'd run in the other direction.

also, welcome!

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Old 04-17-2017, 04:52 AM   #18
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I do not understand the difference between a mobile home and a tiny house? Seems that on some environmental ideas the tiny homes are better but no reason that you could not throw some more insulation and solar panels at a mobil single or double.

later J
thats what i did with cash on hand, living the dept free life!
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Old 04-17-2017, 05:39 AM   #19
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Hey I live I Austin and recently just started my conversion. As a metal fabricator by trade I thought this would be the perfect bad idea. Haha

I trade work to store by bus in the Buda area and the commute isn't too bad to work on it.

Be aware that these conversions require a ton of work if you are going to build it right, reinsulate, door modifications, plumbing and electrical. Not for the faint at heart. If you can't do the work yourself it's going to get expensive quickly! Your short time frame means more $$$ as well.

That being said, I can do mobile metal fabrication and might be able to help if you really need it. Actually the reason I'm converting mine is to have a 40 foot mobile livable shop.


Good luck on your wheels
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