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Old 04-14-2021, 10:01 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Getting my bus home from Alabama (to Maryland)

Hello all,

I am currently stuck in a bit of a pickle, recently purchased my bus through an auction which is located in Alabama (I'm in Maryland) and while working through getting this bus shipped, all of the shippers backed out.

I would head down and drive it up myself (roughly 722 miles), but I do not have a commercial license and although the seller assures me it "starts and runs great", I know it has been sitting in the auction yard for a long time, so do not know what kind of shape it is in.

I'd love to find out if anybody has suggestions, I am currently lost as to what to do next.

Details on my bus: 2005 Freightliner FS65

Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2021, 02:38 PM   #2
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There is a member on here handle: Cheese-Wagon, who has driven busses for new buyers. Don't know what he charges, or if he could do your work but his email is on the bottom of his posts.
Edit: Here is his contact info:
anomaly.va@gmail.com
Good luck...
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Old 04-14-2021, 03:17 PM   #3
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Thank you, I will try to reach out to see if he can help!
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Old 04-14-2021, 03:42 PM   #4
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I've driven em back with no tags enough times. If you have insurance and a title you're good to go. If it starts and stops and has oil it should be fine.
That's just how its always went for ME.
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Old 04-14-2021, 03:51 PM   #5
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Lol, knowing my luck, I'll probably get pulled over as soon as I get on the highway.
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Old 04-14-2021, 04:08 PM   #6
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IDk I got the Charlie Brown luck and I've been alright. Hell one bus was from CO and my friend drove it all the way home. I've never had a tag for a used bus to get it home, only in Texas once.
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Old 04-14-2021, 04:17 PM   #7
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722 miles represents a tiny fraction of the distance covered by a school bus in its lifetime, so there's some chance the catastrophic mechanical failures (which are coming) will hold off until you get home. If you do go get it yourself, absolutely buy a BlueFire to take with you and monitor your temperatures closely.
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Old 04-14-2021, 04:23 PM   #8
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Thank you for the tip, I will look into BlueFire!
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Old 04-14-2021, 05:17 PM   #9
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dont pay someone money to drive it.. learn how to pre-trip and hop in the seat and drive it home.. cheese-wagon did a nice write up on how to pre-trip a bus.. its Golden!
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Old 04-14-2021, 06:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skool Munkee View Post

I am currently lost as to what to do next.
Take the advise given and drive it home.
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Old 04-14-2021, 07:07 PM   #11
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yep agree, what they ^ all said. Do the fast study, read Cheese's must check list and go get it. Prepare as much as you can and get it done, that's the thrill.
Good luck and keep us informed
Cheers

Oscar
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Old 04-14-2021, 07:48 PM   #12
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I agree with the other posters, you should head down and get it. If possible, drive down with a friend/SO so you have a "Bandit" car with you for the ride home. This way you have a support system should something go awry (super unlikely), and the moral support of another person on the journey. Make sure you bring some walkie-talkies.

Most states allow you to drive a vehicle without registration or plates for 5-10 days after purchase. In RI we get 5 days from date of sale. As I have been told by police, the rules of your home state apply, so as long as you have a recently dated bill of sale and proof of insurance, you should be good.

If MD does not allow this, temporary registrations or trip permits are available in most states for cheap money. They are usually valid for less than 30 days and will allow you to drive home without fear. Not sure how covid has affected the ability to get one in AL but its worth a shot if you really want to go that route.

Honestly though, a school bus is damn near invisible to police on the highway and I would just send it.
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Old 04-14-2021, 08:54 PM   #13
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In 2 trips across the country with no tags, twice I was told "You really should have a temp tag." My reply both times was similar to "Sir, we are at exit #14, I'm going to be out of your state in about 12 minutes, just passing through." Both replies, "Have a safe trip". I happened to be pulled over on my own both times and they stopped just to check on the bus on the side of the road. They didn't pull me over. I'm a firm beleiver that you have to drive really stupidly to be noticed, everyone ignores school buses on the road. 700 mile trip is perfect to familiarize yourself with the bus with mostly long stetches of road with out a lot of inexperienced manuevers.
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Old 04-14-2021, 11:01 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by o1marc View Post
In 2 trips across the country with no tags, twice I was told "You really should have a temp tag." My reply both times was similar to "Sir, we are at exit #14, I'm going to be out of your state in about 12 minutes, just passing through." Both replies, "Have a safe trip". I happened to be pulled over on my own both times and they stopped just to check on the bus on the side of the road. They didn't pull me over. I'm a firm beleiver that you have to drive really stupidly to be noticed, everyone ignores school buses on the road. 700 mile trip is perfect to familiarize yourself with the bus with mostly long stetches of road with out a lot of inexperienced manuevers.
I heard somewhere that if you're pulled over on the road that gives the Five-o the right to stop and check you out as a safety on the road thing so it's better if you can to get off the highway to a service station or such to avoid that type of questioning? Thoughts?
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Old 04-15-2021, 12:47 AM   #15
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I heard somewhere that if you're pulled over on the road that gives the Five-o the right to stop and check you out as a safety on the road thing so it's better if you can to get off the highway to a service station or such to avoid that type of questioning? Thoughts?
I had nothing to hide, State of Ga. allows me to drive for 30 days on a BOS, they automatically cover me in any vehicle I buy for 7 days. and I had a fresh BOS. I had no worries, my crime was not worth the time.
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Old 04-15-2021, 09:07 AM   #16
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Thank you all for your advices, I believe I will put myself at the mercy of the fates and drive this bad boy home as many have suggested! Wish me luck!
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Old 04-15-2021, 10:21 AM   #17
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Check the tire pressures and air up at a truck stop if needed. Keep some extra 15w40 oil in case it needs a top off or two. Should be fine. Good luck and have fun!
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Old 04-17-2021, 04:02 PM   #18
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Just wanted to give an updated for everyone, I flew down to Alabama at the crack of dawn on Friday and picked up the bus. Thankfully the seller was true to his word, bus started and run without breaking down.

Had some scares early due to not being familiar with driving a bus, but toward the end I got familiar with way this thing handles and honestly had a blast!

I want to thank everyone on this forum for your advice and for saving me $$$ and allowing me to take the proper first step to building my skoolie!
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Old 04-17-2021, 04:06 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skool Munkee View Post
Just wanted to give an updated for everyone, I flew down to Alabama at the crack of dawn on Friday and picked up the bus. Thankfully the seller was true to his word, bus started and run without breaking down.

Had some scares early due to not being familiar with driving a bus, but toward the end I got familiar with way this thing handles and honestly had a blast!

I want to thank everyone on this forum for your advice and for saving me $$$ and allowing me to take the proper first step to building my skoolie!
CONGRATS, pal!

No one's ever guaranteed anything, but these bus auctions are usually pretty much the same. I've got one bad bus in 6 and it still made it home and never fully FAILED.
Glad to know it went well. getting the bus is half the fun, and talking to the bus folks when you pick it up... IDK I just love a good auction bus!
Get some pics up!!!
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Old 04-18-2021, 05:17 PM   #20
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That’s great to hear all went well. Congrats on the maiden voyage!
Cheers

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