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Old 04-02-2016, 04:28 PM   #1
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I found a bus i might like, opinions!?

so I went out today and looked at a few schoolie frames. One was basically perfect to my rookie eyes.

its a 2003, IC, CE Body, T444 Diesel engine, Air brakes, with 153k, 33 pax bus

what would you say is a fair price? no maint records to be had at all, 72 MPH is the max speed with governor.

here is the entire picture set, i added a few here on the forum
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Old 04-02-2016, 05:02 PM   #2
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Sounds like a nice bus. Can I ask how much?
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Old 04-02-2016, 05:11 PM   #3
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Sounds like a nice bus. Can I ask how much?
what would you think it would cost? I will answer in a PM after lol
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Old 04-02-2016, 05:42 PM   #4
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Old 04-02-2016, 05:45 PM   #5
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Old 04-02-2016, 06:09 PM   #6
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72 is pretty fast for a 444.
I'll guess its a dealer asking 8 grand. I've been wrong before, though.
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Old 04-02-2016, 06:17 PM   #7
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CB is right on. It should be about 8k from a dealer. Most of us would get it from the bus barn, also taking upon ourselves the potential risk of there being undiscovered problems, for a significant amount less than dealer prices. On the lower end of the price scale many of us seem to often be able to get nice buses between $2,600 and $3,000. That may require a bit of patience, but then the more time you spend looking the more you learn.
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Old 04-02-2016, 07:06 PM   #8
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4,500 with about 500 or so wiggle room is what they want for it.
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Old 04-02-2016, 07:15 PM   #9
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Its alright looking, but there IS some rust. Looks like about a $3000 bus if it weren't at a dealer.
The 444 is a great engine but is a bit on the under-powered side for a bus.

Not the worst price for a dealer though.
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Old 04-02-2016, 07:27 PM   #10
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Its alright looking, but there IS some rust. Looks like about a $3000 bus if it weren't at a dealer.
The 444 is a great engine but is a bit on the under-powered side for a bus.

Not the worst price for a dealer though.
Yes, It mostly looks like surface rust, i am sure it is deeper in parts of the bus. The engine on this thing purrs, But without any documentation i suspect the engine needs to rebuilt and sooner rather than later. The batteries will need to be replaced as well and of course an oil change. With the rust I might be able to use those factors to get it below 4,000. But with a dealership, i doubt it.

Why do you say the 444 is under-powered? like it would not be able to carry the load of a conversion well?
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Old 04-02-2016, 08:01 PM   #11
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Its not a bad motor, but its lower in power than a 5.9 cummins or DT466.
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Old 04-02-2016, 08:57 PM   #12
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Its not a bad motor, but its lower in power than a 5.9 cummins or DT466.
so other than rawr! power its still a decent engine? does it cost more to repair? are the parts harder to find? is there any factor other than the RAWR! power that comes into play? I do not really plan to go overboard on weight in the conversion. is there another consideration i am not considering?
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Old 04-02-2016, 11:34 PM   #13
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They're reliable enough, for sure.
If it truly does 72mph then that's great. But don't expect it to do too well in the mountains.
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Old 04-02-2016, 11:56 PM   #14
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They're reliable enough, for sure.
If it truly does 72mph then that's great. But don't expect it to do too well in the mountains.
yeah it does i was in the bus while it was doing 72 sustained lol. Ahhh, so that's the catch. well that sucks in regards to going to colorado in general :-/
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Old 04-03-2016, 12:26 AM   #15
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I mean, my bus only has 190 hp and only does about 62 or 63. I wouldn't cross the rockies with it.
If it does 72 it sounds like it has plenty of power.
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Old 04-03-2016, 12:35 AM   #16
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I mean, my bus only has 190 hp and only does about 62 or 63. I wouldn't cross the rockies with it.
If it does 72 it sounds like it has plenty of power.
yeah, the bus to me is, with consideration of the rust belt, in great shape. I think i can do Colorado but 0 mountain elevations past the initial city height. Now the more important part...how to scrounge up the monies, assuming i still have the giggles about it on tuesday lol
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Old 04-03-2016, 12:37 AM   #17
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The buses in CO are pretty awesome, if a bit pricey.
I love it out there.
Have you looked at any proper mountain buses? The buses in CO come all come with driveline retarders and usually have higher HP ratings.
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Old 04-03-2016, 12:42 AM   #18
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The buses in CO are pretty awesome, if a bit pricey.
I love it out there.
Have you looked at any proper mountain buses? The buses in CO come all come with driveline retarders and usually have higher HP ratings.
yeah....noooo, i am working hard to make $4k work. the buses there are far more expensive. granted my civic is from there and gets insane MPG compared to friends who bought theirs in chicago. but alas, my budget , she is a fickle lady. lol
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Old 04-03-2016, 08:10 AM   #19
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Yes, It mostly looks like surface rust, i am sure it is deeper in parts of the bus. The engine on this thing purrs, But without any documentation i suspect the engine needs to rebuilt and sooner rather than later. The batteries will need to be replaced as well and of course an oil change. With the rust I might be able to use those factors to get it below 4,000. But with a dealership, i doubt it.

Why do you say the 444 is under-powered? like it would not be able to carry the load of a conversion well?
Why do you think the engine will need to be rebuilt? 150k miles on a diesel is nothing. And as far as load of the conversion, you should be way under what the capacity of the bus is. Did you look to see how many rpm the engine was turning at 72mph? What condition are the tires in (tread, date code, cracking)? Since it's a dealer you can haggle......see if you can get them to perform scheduled maintenance on it as part of the deal (Fluid changes, possibly any belts that might need changing, etc). Worst thing they can say is no and you can always walk if you feel strong enough about it. They have dozens of these and just want to get rid of them as fast as they can, while you can take your time and shop around for the right deal. For $4k you can find what you want, just have patience.
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Old 04-03-2016, 11:26 AM   #20
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Why do you think the engine will need to be rebuilt? 150k miles on a diesel is nothing. And as far as load of the conversion, you should be way under what the capacity of the bus is. Did you look to see how many rpm the engine was turning at 72mph? What condition are the tires in (tread, date code, cracking)? Since it's a dealer you can haggle......see if you can get them to perform scheduled maintenance on it as part of the deal (Fluid changes, possibly any belts that might need changing, etc). Worst thing they can say is no and you can always walk if you feel strong enough about it. They have dozens of these and just want to get rid of them as fast as they can, while you can take your time and shop around for the right deal. For $4k you can find what you want, just have patience.
150 k without the engine being rebuilt at all, or at least no confirmation of any maintenance. so i have to be prepared to consider it as needed as i have no evidence to the contrary. Honestly, no not the entire time, it looked like it was under red but i cannot 100% confirm. The tires are in the pictures, No cracking, the code says they were made in 2012, the tread is deep. I thought the same, but i might just do some of that myself. I will have to learn how to do an oil change on it eventually. Yeah, they do, and i think i can get it for 4k without haggling and maybe 3-3.5k if i really point out all the issues. I am taking my time, i looked at school buses, RV's, U-hauls,and previously converted Schoolies. People are asking for a lot of money for poor craftsmanship in most instances. And it seems most logical to build to my tastes. Also, Most of the out of state places are offering similar prices for what i want. However, i dont have to drive 2000 miles to get this one locally, if the price came down to 3k i buy it now. lol
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