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Old 02-18-2024, 11:48 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Reputable Washington Mechanics?

Hello all! I am buying a bus soon in Washington that needs work done to the engine before we can drive it down to California. Do any of you know a reputable shop that I can take it to? I don't want to google search, I'd much rather find a shop that the forum approves of so I don't get the run around.
Thank you so much in advance!

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Old 02-19-2024, 11:56 AM   #2
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Hi live in Washington also …North of tri city’s brought a IC 2010 bus got it strip inside was a semi driver 49 years jack of all trades master of none LoL but if u need some help on some things could help u out if your close to me
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Old 02-19-2024, 12:41 PM   #3
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Location: Yelm, WA
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Year: 1995
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: Cummins 5.9L 12v
What type of skooklie are you looking to get worked on?


Some folks use the diesel truck mechanic shops for repairs and referral for other stuff.


My neighbor owns and runs https://genesisautorv.com/ in Tacoma....I trust him completely....fair and honest (and great) guy.


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Yelm, WA
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Old 02-21-2024, 03:02 AM   #4
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Thanks for your input!

I'm getting a 1965 Gillig with a C190 Cummins (can't find anything on that engine thus far) and I was told it most likely has a cracked head. I want to get that fixed and have the bus gone thru so I can drive it from Washington to California then off to hit the road. Likely the generator will need work as well. I really am at the point where I don't want to work on the mechanics myself as this is a big first time (never owned a bus before or worked on them) so I'd like to know it's road worth and ready for a few years of adventure with proper upkeep of course. I have attached a picture of the engine for reference
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Old 02-21-2024, 08:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChallengerExpress View Post
I'm getting a 1965 Gillig with a C190 Cummins (can't find anything on that engine thus far) and I was told it most likely has a cracked head. I want to get that fixed and have the bus gone thru so I can drive it from Washington to California then off to hit the road. Likely the generator will need work as well. I really am at the point where I don't want to work on the mechanics myself as this is a big first time (never owned a bus before or worked on them) so I'd like to know it's road worth and ready for a few years of adventure with proper upkeep of course. I have attached a picture of the engine for reference

------------------

Cracked heads are sometimes repairable via pinning or lock n stitch. There are other options like fire spray or furnace welding but that won't be cost effective.

Has the cause of the cracks been fixed? High EGTs, excessive compression, uncut counterbores, misaligned liner protrusion...

Do you know if the head has been removed and pressure tested? You won't find a replacement head for this motor. The 190s are made out of unobtanium.

How many cracks have been found? Its unlikely that there is only one, may very well be several dozen. I'm not exaggerating. There could be two cracks on each valve seat, half a dozen cracks on the intake seats & several more cracks joining the exhaust seats & water jackets.

How much time & money will you invest to uncover the truth about the rest of the drivetrain? - motor, transmission, suspension, brakes, steering, belt, hoses, seals, gaskets.... Before you start down this road, set a limit on the amount of time & money you'll invest. Be prepared to bail or cut your losses.

It's important to note that the extreme operating conditions that cause cylinder head cracks also have detrimental effects on your valves. They are susceptible to stretching, breaking, or experiencing a chordal fracture, which is a common failure in such conditions. In some cases, valves may even grow

The elevated temperatures cause the valves to stretch, reducing the clearance between the valves and rocker arms. This leads to a decrease in overhead lash and accelerated wear.

Seems like a huge gamble for a buyer whom doesn't want to work on the mechanicals nor know a reputable mechanic.

Surely the shop will gladly invoice you while attempting to repair the cracks to their best ability. If that doesnt work, you'll have a much lighter wallet, a non-running bus to store and a vast education about cracked heads. How do think I learned?
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Old 02-21-2024, 09:27 AM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Location: Yelm, WA
Posts: 30
Year: 1995
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: Cummins 5.9L 12v
Oh My!

1965 Bus is 59 years old....I bet it's cool looking.....


BUT......


There are so many things that wear and need attention at that age, and for what it sounds like you're wanting to do, and not wanting to do (wrenching on the bus).....I HIGHLY recommend an alternative plan!

Even if you have thousands of $$$ to make this adventure happen, there's just the basic physics of things being worn out and needing to be repaired/replaced.


Think of it like this;


If the engine is shot, and so old you can't find replacement parts, but some miracle worker mechanic gets it running.....what about when it needs to be fixed again (and it will....they all do).

If the engine is unhealthy, there's the rest of the drive train to consider needing attention
Transmission
Drive line (U-Joints)
Rear differential and wheel bearings

Engine control linkage


How about brakes?
Brake shoes and drums
Brake hydraulic system



Steering
Steering Box

Steering Linkage



Suspension
Shocks
Bushings
Springs


Electrical
Alternator
Fuse Panel

Heater
Wipers
Lights/turn signals




Well.....that's my 0.02 worth on the considerations for getting a 59 year old bus and hitting the road for the adventure it sounds like your really wanting to do.



There are some busses up for auction at GovDeals.com here in Washington (Spanaway)....just down the street from me! They're not converted yet tho.
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Old 02-21-2024, 10:50 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fj40dave View Post

If the engine is unhealthy, there's the rest of the drive train to consider needing attention
Transmission
Drive line (U-Joints)
Rear differential and wheel bearings

Engine control linkage


How about brakes?
Brake shoes and drums
Brake hydraulic system



Steering
Steering Box

Steering Linkage



Suspension
Shocks
Bushings
Springs


Electrical
Alternator
Fuse Panel

Heater
Wipers
Lights/turn signals
.

I've already replaced most of that list on mine, but I've done it myself at a much cheaper cost. The one thing I didn't do was the 30 year old computer and it cost more than all the others I did combined cause the dealership did it. But I know my engine is solid and runs great. And the other stuff can be done by you easily enough with a little guidance.

Is my investment a sunken fallacy? To be determined. But I also consider it a learning opportunity and education costs as well and when I consider the education, it's worth the cost to me. If you aren't willing to get down and dirty yourself on your investment and do the work yourself, it's going to cost you far more. It honestly may be cheaper to find a newer engine and retrofit it into that bus if you're dead set on the body style (Which I can understand and even appreciate), but for most of us a cracked head is a new engine so a $12-15k bill, or you can waste $4-6k in repairs and find new cracks start shortly afterwards and be right back where you started and still end up paying 12-15k for a new engine.

You do you, but know the costs before making a decision.
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Old 02-21-2024, 01:47 PM   #8
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Look up a c190 Cummins it is like bt 5.9 motor did find a c motor on search but was sold Vader house had it me I would go with 5.9 up to 1998 like in a dodge only one wire to get motor started & run no computer or ecm
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Old 02-21-2024, 08:11 PM   #9
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Here is a link to the bus in question that I am buying

https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f14/f...5-a-43034.html
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Old 02-21-2024, 09:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChallengerExpress View Post
Here is a link to the bus in question that I am buying

https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f14/f...5-a-43034.html
BEAUTIFUL Gillig! Wow that is everything a vintage bus owner cIould want in one package....except the engine not running. Seller seem to have had it for several years and certainly put a lot of money into it so far.

Hmm......I am looking up whatever I can find on the Cummins C190 and it appears it *was* an industrial engine, powering things like generators and heavy construction equipment like road graders. I am no expert but its strange to think this engine was put into this Gillig from the factory. However, at some point and engine is an engine. OP, you have a challenging road ahead of you to get this bus back on the road but it can be done if you resolve to pu$h thru the i$$ues ahead of you.

I know a guy who has driven many Gilligs...and Crowns.......maybe he can show up and chime in. Let me call him..........Gillig Gillig Gillig!
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Old 02-22-2024, 02:29 PM   #11
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crown guy! crown guy! CROWN GUY!
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Old 02-22-2024, 02:39 PM   #12
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Year: 63&5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger bus 223 View Post
crown guy! crown guy! CROWN GUY!
I know, I know....since my last ignorant post I have been educating myself, the Gillig did offer the C190 and installed quite a few in their buses it seems.

There is a regular here who has driven those Gilligs and might have answers for OP.

Cowlitzcoach.......a litle help please!

EDIT: oops, has cowlitzcoach gone radio silent?
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Old 02-22-2024, 02:45 PM   #13
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i am sure crown guy has driven a gillig.
havent heard from cowlitze coach in a few years?
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Old 02-25-2024, 05:30 PM   #14
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jan 2024
Location: NW Washington
Posts: 11
Year: 1965
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cummins C190
Quote:
Originally Posted by fj40dave View Post
Oh My!

1965 Bus is 59 years old....I bet it's cool looking.....


BUT......


There are so many things that wear and need attention at that age, and for what it sounds like you're wanting to do, and not wanting to do (wrenching on the bus).....I HIGHLY recommend an alternative plan!

Even if you have thousands of $$$ to make this adventure happen, there's just the basic physics of things being worn out and needing to be repaired/replaced.


Think of it like this;


If the engine is shot, and so old you can't find replacement parts, but some miracle worker mechanic gets it running.....what about when it needs to be fixed again (and it will....they all do).

If the engine is unhealthy, there's the rest of the drive train to consider needing attention
Transmission
Drive line (U-Joints)
Rear differential and wheel bearings

Engine control linkage


How about brakes?
Brake shoes and drums
Brake hydraulic system



Steering
Steering Box

Steering Linkage



Suspension
Shocks
Bushings
Springs


Electrical
Alternator
Fuse Panel

Heater
Wipers
Lights/turn signals




Well.....that's my 0.02 worth on the considerations for getting a 59 year old bus and hitting the road for the adventure it sounds like your really wanting to do.



There are some busses up for auction at GovDeals.com here in Washington (Spanaway)....just down the street from me! They're not converted yet tho.

Hi
I'm the seller of the bus this thread is discussing and would like to chime in:
Reading through this discussion I am finding a lot of good comments and ones that really need to be talked about. I am totally willing to answer any and all questions that the experts throw this way

To: ChallengerExpress
From what I am understanding your plan is to tow the bus to Tacoma to have a mechanic have a look and see about getting it road worthy and fully would agree with that plan of action. Best scenario he find that the head gasket is blown and can have on the road with in a week or so and have it down the road. Worst case he tells you that the entire engine is shot and needs to be replaced. You really need to be prepared for either and anything in between.

When we face-timed you saw that it does turn over and even started to run before I shut it down because all the fluids had been drained.
My question is and I ask have you thought about what your will to do if the engine needs more that just the top end of the engine worked on or even a replacement.
This board had brought up some very valid point about the age of this engine and will attempt to answer as many as I can.


DeMac wrote: (Do you know if the head has been removed and pressure tested? You won't find a replacement head for this motor. The 190s are made out of unobtanium.)
I have located a replacement head at Vander Haags, here is the link
https://www.vanderhaags.com/detailvi...?part=24897651
$1,633.69 with core exchange.
New head will answer any and all head ?'s
How much time & money will you invest to uncover the truth about the rest of the drivetrain? - motor, transmission, suspension, brakes, steering, belt, hoses, seals, gaskets.... Before you start down this road, set a limit on the amount of time & money you'll invest. Be prepared to bail or cut your losses.
Let me speak to the transmission. The transmission was removed and reinstalled at Kenneys trucks after being sent to Weller Truck Parts in Kent Wa. Weller transported the tran to Allison shipping and recieving in Grand Rapids Mich where I paid $3970 for the rebuild and another $2324.66 for remove and install at Kenney's. Kenneys as part of the R&R replaced U-joints ($272.64), R&R of Bendex D-2 govenor ($180.5, Adjusted brakes $55.00), trans cooler flush ($114,00) and a few other misc supplies and hazmat disposal. Test drive and adjusted linkage"Ok at this time" My total R&R with rebuild was $6294.92. Have reciept
fj40dave wrote: (If the engine is shot, and so old you can't find replacement parts, but some miracle worker mechanic gets it running.....what about when it needs to be fixed again (and it will....they all do).)
No arguments here,
How about brakes?
Brake shoes and drums
Brake hydraulic system

All 6 tires were replaced by Les Schwab with 11R22.5/16 RI-150 Ecorun Highway and all were spin balanced with weights total 3234.6
Les Schwab checked brake pads and no recommendations made.



Steering
Steering Box
Steering Linkage



Suspension
Shocks
Bushings
Springs

Electrical
Alternator
Fuse Panel

Heater
Wipers
Lights/turn signals

All I can attest to is all above everything operated/worked very well last time out on the road. It really is a solid ride. The wipers do work but varies depending on vacuum loads


Nikitis Wrote:
Is my investment a sunken fallacy? To be determined. But I also consider it a learning opportunity and education costs as well and when I consider the education, it's worth the cost to me. If you aren't willing to get down and dirty yourself on your investment and do the work yourself, it's going to cost you far more. It honestly may be cheaper to find a newer engine and retrofit it into that bus if you're dead set on the body style (Which I can understand and even appreciate), but for most of us a cracked head is a new engine so a $12-15k bill, or you can waste $4-6k in repairs and find new cracks start shortly afterwards and be right back where you started and still end up paying 12-15k for a new engine.


Having this said, he is a wise man. I have always been a do-it-your selfer.
If I want to to realize the best bang for the buck it is worth getting your hand dirty for a while and not be too much is a hurry and able to understand how things work for knowledge down the road.


Like I said at the beginning i am willing to answer any questions from this board and to you ChallengerExpress you have my number, feel free to call and we can talk further on any of your thoughts and ideas or concerns.
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Old 02-25-2024, 05:51 PM   #15
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Join Date: Jan 2024
Location: NW Washington
Posts: 11
Year: 1965
Coachwork: Gillig
Engine: Cummins C190
Just posted a reply to this thread. I am the owner of the 65 Gillig
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