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Old 05-07-2016, 11:26 PM   #1
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The Kid loves Buses!

Hi,

New member here, and the kid is the kid in me. I bought a prison transport bus a few months ago and hoped to get it running and live in it. I am quite the mechanic, but i threw in the towell after some rough pathches at repair and never got it to run.

Now i have been searching Craigslist for a bus and planning to buy one before July. I am quite handy at electrical and mechanical, but decided to spend my money on a running bus this time. Then i can use it for what i want before i need to look under the hood.

I already live simple, in a shop space. I lay in bed dreaming of being able to roll out of here soon, the kitty and i that is

Thanks for having me.

Someone told me that a only a school bus can be yellow here in VA but i just read a post here that it can but i will need to remove the stop sign, flassing lights, school name and school bus words. Anyone confirm this?

My biggest task now is to see if i can find a place to park it before i buy it. My plan was to park on a neighborhood street and move it every week, but again someone told me that is not legal.

Happy to hear from anyone who care to offer guidance

Carytowncat
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:28 PM   #2
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welcome!
Yeah figure out a COUPLE of SOLID places you feel confident in parking. Its the bane of bus existence.
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:15 AM   #3
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Recent research and a call to Virginia DMV led to some surprising conclusions. The law says only a schoolbus here can 1) be that color yellow; 2) have the stopsign and other safety gear; and 3) display 8" black letters saying "School Bus". I verified with the DMV lady that if my vehicle LACKED ONE of those three, it was legal. (The logic is that AB and C must be present for the violation: if only A and B are present you're clear.)

My plan is to pick up the bus and remove the stopsign with a wrench, then tape over the lettering and the wigwag lights with black Gorilla Tape.

Note, however, that merely DRIVING through other states who get more excited about the 'any shade of yellow' stuff has me persuaded to buy a couple of gallons of Ford Grey tractor paint (from Tractor Supply), some hardener, and a bunch of foam brushes and rollers. It won't be showroom... but neither am I.

Also, I verified that in VA you do NOT need a CDL if you're driving for your own personal purposes such as recreation. I plan to neatly letter "Personal Recreational Vehicle - Not For Hire" just below the driver's window.

You WOULD be wise to have CDL skills, of course: I read the handbook and have been watching 'how to do a pre-trip inspection' videos on YouTube, especially for air brakes. Of course, I *do* have some years before any bus purchase is possible, and it's unlikely even then. Sigh...
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Old 05-08-2016, 10:14 AM   #4
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great info

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dapplecreek View Post
Recent research and a call to Virginia DMV led to some surprising conclusions. The law says only a schoolbus here can 1) be that color yellow; 2) have the stopsign and other safety gear; and 3) display 8" black letters saying "School Bus". I verified with the DMV lady that if my vehicle LACKED ONE of those three, it was legal. (The logic is that AB and C must be present for the violation: if only A and B are present you're clear.)

My plan is to pick up the bus and remove the stopsign with a wrench, then tape over the lettering and the wigwag lights with black Gorilla Tape.

Note, however, that merely DRIVING through other states who get more excited about the 'any shade of yellow' stuff has me persuaded to buy a couple of gallons of Ford Grey tractor paint (from Tractor Supply), some hardener, and a bunch of foam brushes and rollers. It won't be showroom... but neither am I.

Also, I verified that in VA you do NOT need a CDL if you're driving for your own personal purposes such as recreation. I plan to neatly letter "Personal Recreational Vehicle - Not For Hire" just below the driver's window.

You WOULD be wise to have CDL skills, of course: I read the handbook and have been watching 'how to do a pre-trip inspection' videos on YouTube, especially for air brakes. Of course, I *do* have some years before any bus purchase is possible, and it's unlikely even then. Sigh...
Thank you, that information is very helpful...and i do actually really like School Bus yellow so that makes me happy.

I too will start watching and reading CDL information so i can be better prepared.

I will keep my fingers crossed for you (and me) and wish us both good bus luck!

In the past waiting has proven super helpful and wise, so that knowledge takes a little of the sting out of waiting now, but it still has been challenging. However it's like the three Bears in some ways -this one has the good motor i want but is not the length that i want, this one is the right length but doesn't have the motor i want, this one is the right length and has the motor i want but is not in my price range. However i recently found one that seems just right but he won't be available till next week. the time isn't ripe yet so i need to see how things unfold. Sometimes...often misfortune has revealed something better. Time will tell.
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Old 05-08-2016, 10:39 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dapplecreek View Post
Recent research and a call to Virginia DMV led to some surprising conclusions. The law says only a schoolbus here can 1) be that color yellow; 2) have the stopsign and other safety gear; and 3) display 8" black letters saying "School Bus". I verified with the DMV lady that if my vehicle LACKED ONE of those three, it was legal. (The logic is that AB and C must be present for the violation: if only A and B are present you're clear.)

My plan is to pick up the bus and remove the stopsign with a wrench, then tape over the lettering and the wigwag lights with black Gorilla Tape.

Note, however, that merely DRIVING through other states who get more excited about the 'any shade of yellow' stuff has me persuaded to buy a couple of gallons of Ford Grey tractor paint (from Tractor Supply), some hardener, and a bunch of foam brushes and rollers. It won't be showroom... but neither am I.

Also, I verified that in VA you do NOT need a CDL if you're driving for your own personal purposes such as recreation. I plan to neatly letter "Personal Recreational Vehicle - Not For Hire" just below the driver's window.

You WOULD be wise to have CDL skills, of course: I read the handbook and have been watching 'how to do a pre-trip inspection' videos on YouTube, especially for air brakes. Of course, I *do* have some years before any bus purchase is possible, and it's unlikely even then. Sigh...
I made it from KY to FL without even a second glance from LEO's. Just wait and do a proper paint job when you get it home.
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Old 05-08-2016, 02:44 PM   #6
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Yeah, people respect school buses. Take advantage of that.
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Old 05-08-2016, 04:13 PM   #7
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Yeah, people respect school buses. Take advantage of that.
^THIS

Have you EVER seen a school bus pulled over?
I know I've seen several poorly pained buses pulled over.
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Old 05-08-2016, 05:33 PM   #8
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the Cops typically dont pull a bus over, however DOT might, or might see it at a rest area or such and question it..

my bus got pulled over on its way down from ohio when it was being driven by the dealer.. it was a completely generic school bus... the school system name was painted over but everything else was normal..

DOT checked them for CDL (since they ARE a commercial entity).. as well as made sure everythign worked, evwn down to having a fire extuingisher etc.. (DOT typically WONT stop an RV...)


you may be able to put a sign on it that says "IN Transport, Not in Service" on a couple windows

-Christopher
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:33 PM   #9
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I wanted to put "LOOSCH SUB" on the front.
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Old 05-08-2016, 08:39 PM   #10
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I wanted to put "LOOSCH SUB" on the front.
Mine is getting labelled 'DEV RANDOM' in the same place and font where 'SCHOOL BUS' goes... I love your idea
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:26 PM   #11
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Actually it was an old dyslexia commercial probably about selling meds.

Did you see the photo of the bus that has "SCHOOL BUS" but in inverted colors. That's really poking fun at the law, which is funny, but invites trouble. More than normal.
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Old 05-08-2016, 10:56 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Carytowncat View Post
Hi,

New member here, and the kid is the kid in me. I bought a prison transport bus a few months ago and hoped to get it running and live in it. I am quite the mechanic, but i threw in the towell after some rough pathches at repair and never got it to run.

Now i have been searching Craigslist for a bus and planning to buy one before July. I am quite handy at electrical and mechanical, but decided to spend my money on a running bus this time. Then i can use it for what i want before i need to look under the hood.

I already live simple, in a shop space. I lay in bed dreaming of being able to roll out of here soon, the kitty and i that is

Thanks for having me.

Someone told me that a only a school bus can be yellow here in VA but i just read a post here that it can but i will need to remove the stop sign, flassing lights, school name and school bus words. Anyone confirm this?

My biggest task now is to see if i can find a place to park it before i buy it. My plan was to park on a neighborhood street and move it every week, but again someone told me that is not legal.

Happy to hear from anyone who care to offer guidance

Carytowncat
Check out what the state of NC has to offer (link below) from their various counties. The listing of what is currently for sale is on the site by county and they seem to have a standard price structure. Let us know the results if you talk to them or decide to visit. I'd like to find out what condition most of the buses they sell are in.

North Carolina School Bus Surplus System
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Old 05-08-2016, 11:47 PM   #13
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That nc bus listing seems fine. Prices are right about normal, maybe a whisker heavy but i prefer to buy from someone. When i bought my first prison transport bus i was just lifted up with joy just being in the bus and the seller, who i now consider a friend, was delighted and wanted to see it go to someone who would appreciate it. He said he didnt really want to sell it, and i believe him because after i gave up trying to fix it and listed in on Craigslist, he saw it and bought it back! lol how cool is that?!
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Old 05-09-2016, 12:43 AM   #14
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That's pretty cool, but now you don't have any storage.
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Old 05-09-2016, 12:08 PM   #15
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I just noticed your "cat plus one" A kitty and I will be traveling together as well.
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Old 05-09-2016, 12:21 PM   #16
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I just noticed your "cat plus one" A kitty and I will be traveling together as well.

I cant even get my cat in the car for a quick minute let alone on a bus trip half way across the country... you guys must have some very dossile kitties
-Christopher
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Old 05-09-2016, 02:05 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by dgorila1 View Post
Check out what the state of NC has to offer (link below) from their various counties. The listing of what is currently for sale is on the site by county and they seem to have a standard price structure. Let us know the results if you talk to them or decide to visit. I'd like to find out what condition most of the buses they sell are in.

North Carolina School Bus Surplus System
hijack: are they using a lotus notes DB for this site?!?
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Old 05-09-2016, 02:14 PM   #18
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hijack: are they using a lotus notes DB for this site?!?
looks like a Stock notes DB web access page.. the nsf files are the tell-tale.

they sure dont tell you much about the busses and some of them have been for sale for a long time..

-Christopher
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Old 05-09-2016, 03:43 PM   #19
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...In the past waiting has proven super helpful and wise, so that knowledge takes a little of the sting out of waiting now, but it still has been challenging....
If you can wait (or if anyone else is interested), our local school district seems to have great equipment, and will be turning several loose in July or August. 2001 or 2002 (I think), conventional nose, DT466(e, I presume), Allison 2500, no structural rust (though perhaps some on skirting), air brakes, good tires, and maintenance records since Day 1. My plan was to go over these with a fine-toothed comb (a jillion photos and a full CDL pre-trip inspection, maybe video of them starting, not sure) and post the results here. It would be good practice for me and an education, I'm sure, and might help someone on the forum. The last batch went from $2800-$5K, with most at $3500.
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Old 05-09-2016, 05:14 PM   #20
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What state are you located in?
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