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-   -   What kind of mileage do you get? (https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f13/what-kind-of-mileage-do-you-get-15.html)

ism minerals 11-05-2015 08:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by porkchopsandwiches (Post 123117)
On our 9,000 mile trip this summer, the trip average in my 1999 Thomas bus with 3126b CAT (electronic engine) and 6-speed Allison MD3060 (6th gear enabled), cruising at 65 with foot buried most of the trip, weighing in at about 24,500 lbs, we averaged 8.2 mpg. Best was 9.3 going SE through Yellowstone on 287, worst was on PCH (route 1) at about 6.5 (constant hills and stop-and-go letting people pass).

Edit: 4.62 rear gears turning ~2,100 rpm at 65.

Porkchop,

Did your bus come stock with the 4.62 or did you change the carrier?

porkchopsandwiches 11-12-2015 05:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ism minerals (Post 128176)
Porkchop,

Did your bus come stock with the 4.62 or did you change the carrier?

I do not know for a fact that it is 4.62 but judging by RPM at 65 and wheel diameter, I calculated it to be 4.62. I did not touch it, it came with it if it is in fact a 4.62.

Dragonpop 11-13-2015 09:55 PM

By my calculation if you sixth gear is opened up it is .65 ratio overdrive and you have
11X22.5 tires with a diameter of 41.3 inches and your doing 65 miles per hour at
2100 rpm that would make the rear differential ratio 6.2 or there abouts. My bus has
5.38 differential ratio and 43 inch diameter tires 12X22.5 tires running only 5th gear
which is .75 ratio overdrive, at 2000 RPM I am doing 65 MPH.

CaptSquid 11-27-2015 04:57 PM

I averaged 7.5 on a trip from Kanakee, IL to Billings, MT.

Toyman01 02-10-2016 06:11 PM

1047 miles from Allenton, WI to Charleston, SC. 7.6 MPG.

2kool4skool 02-10-2016 07:26 PM

After almost 5000mi, still at 11.5 mpg. We tow almost always with 2 setups. One is 3200# the other 4500#. Not towing= SAME!
20,000# verified wt, 5.9 185hp w/545. 3:54 ratio and 55-60 mph.

tinybelugabus 02-10-2016 08:18 PM

With my Gillig its gallons per mile ;-)

joey 04-04-2016 10:52 AM

fuel mileage
 
We want to buy a school bus to make a rv. Looking at two the first one is a 8.2 diesel allison trans. The second one is a 454 chevy 5 speed . Can someone give me an estamat on fuel mileage for both?

Tango 04-04-2016 10:55 AM

Numerous other factors. Size of bus...gear ratios for trans & rear end...tire size...normally aspirated or turbocharged...intercooler (diesel only)...

That said...most any diesel will get better mpg than the 454. Anyone else care to chime in here?

2kool4skool 04-04-2016 11:03 AM

FWIW my 454 powered 10,000lb MH got 5-7.

joey 04-04-2016 01:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 2kool4skool (Post 141746)
FWIW my 454 powered 10,000lb MH got 5-7.

what transmission auto or standard?

cadillackid 04-04-2016 03:33 PM

my last bus was a shortie blue bird with a 454 Chevy in it that I did some work on to make it nice N fresh.. cammed with an RV cam and it got 5-6 on average.. I dont know the exact transmission... 545 maybe? it was a 4 speed auto

-Christopher

joey 04-04-2016 03:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by joey (Post 141763)
what transmission auto or standard?

5 speed standard

EastCoastCB 04-04-2016 03:52 PM

I'd hold out for a better drivetrain than gas or the fuel pincher.

2kool4skool 04-04-2016 03:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by joey (Post 141763)
what transmission auto or standard?

th400....,

Albatross 05-23-2016 12:05 AM

Normally I get ~13-15 mpg, although I'm having a transmission problem with a shift solenoid that's keeping me out of overdrive, so it's 7-8 at the moment.

Blueman 08-04-2016 07:34 PM

I recently purchased a 92 ford b600 bluebird 52 passenger bus. It also has the 6.6 inline diesel in it. I get from 10- 15 mpg with it. Its also a 10 speed manual transmission so maybe that has something to do with it.

Scott Marcano 01-19-2017 03:00 AM

Around ten mpg with the old Bluebird, 6.6L Caterpillar 3116, auto, empty tanks on the road. Around 65 on the flats, not too shaby.

Kam1073 02-23-2017 11:08 PM

Not an option on the poll: 5-6 on Propane

24 Passenger, 350 with manual 5 speed

miltruckman 02-23-2017 11:47 PM

I have a 1998 Bluebird 34' tc2000 with a 6bt 5.9 cummins. I got 9.98mpg driving it from Baltimore Maryland to Saginaw Mi before the conversion.

We will see what it gats after.

Bill
Michigan

cowlitzcoach 02-24-2017 03:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueman (Post 157804)
I recently purchased a 92 ford b600 bluebird 52 passenger bus. It also has the 6.6 inline diesel in it. I get from 10- 15 mpg with it. Its also a 10 speed manual transmission so maybe that has something to do with it.

A 10-speed or is it a 5-speed with a 2-speed rear end?

I can't say that I have ever seen a medium duty truck with a Road Ranger multi-range transmission. Which is not to say it doesn't have one.

When you say the 6.6L engine I assume you are talking about the Brazilian Ford diesel?

A short bus with the right engine and transmission getting more than 10 MPG is not surprising.

fraser 05-22-2017 08:50 AM

92 Thomas MPV saftey liner, 34', 202900 miles, 5.9 , 643 alison 12.1MPG

toplessartist 07-06-2017 03:06 PM

1991 chevy 350, gas, carburated two trips from Salt Lake City to Boise and back wrung out at an average of 13mpg! That includes a few little in-town forays looking for other-than-McDonalds-food!

PNW_Steve 07-07-2017 12:28 PM

It would appear that the 5.9 folks are leading the pack as far as automatic equipped buses.

jefferyofsky 07-07-2017 01:51 PM

This is why I am trying to get into a build and a diesel. I now live in a home made tiny home, bolted to a Dodge Ram Gas V10, which I needed to handle the mountains, and I tow a small cargo trailer with me. I get around 8 miles per gallon, sure I got good speed, but just limited.

This is good mileage, from what I hear you can pretty well tow a car, large cargo trailer, etc., and it will not change, and in fact a lot of people fill their truck boxes up with weight and they get better mileage with a diesel than empty, so the more weight it seems the better.

Is anyone using alternative fuels or partial waste oil burning, to keep your costs down?

cadillackid 07-07-2017 02:37 PM

I havent done a measurement yet but im estimating im in a 12-13 MPG bow since the transmission update. definitely much higher than before from a look at the gas gauge for the number of miles ive driven.. ive got yet to measure.

-Christopher

natedlee 07-21-2017 07:52 PM

I just did the calculations while driving from Iowa to Ohio, so relatively flat run. I got just over 12mpg.

Here's my rig:
- 1998 Bluebird TC2000, 28', 18,500lb.
- Cummins 5.9 12v with Allison AT545
- I kept it around 60mph and the RPMs around 1200
- I wasn't running the stock A/C except briefly at a couple stops.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

chev49 07-22-2017 04:37 AM

this post has gone on forever... think i got 8 mpg with flx when i answered it, n the thomas re is 10+ which is way bettter... not to mention the 318 detroit much more expensive than the 3208

not to mention i always drive 70+

bman91 01-22-2018 07:10 PM

Mileage
 
So I haven't many trips in our rig under my belt but the trip home was a steady 65 mph for 5 hours, we got 12.4 mpg with it.. 8.3 with Allison.. I was pleased with it..

fsrd 01-27-2018 03:39 AM

1993 GMC Blue bird 72 Passanger 6.0L gas MPG
 
I've got a 93 GMC 6.0L (366) gas 72 passenger bus I'm still in the process of converting into an rv. I'll be making a trip from Salt Lake City UT to Charleston SC in a week and will report back with what my average MPG ends up being.

EastCoastCB 01-27-2018 06:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fsrd (Post 248348)
I've got a 93 GMC 6.0L (366) gas 72 passenger bus I'm still in the process of converting into an rv. I'll be making a trip from Salt Lake City UT to Charleston SC in a week and will report back with what my average MPG ends up being.

My 85 Thomas had a gas engine. 3mpg in town, 4 on the highway.
YMMV!

MengerMayhem 01-30-2018 11:40 PM

Has anyone tried an HHO fuel generator? What about bio diesel cost vs MPG? also, does propane injection on your diesel improve MPG vs the cost of the system? What kind of alternative fuels are people messing around with?

cowlitzcoach 02-01-2018 03:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MengerMayhem (Post 249246)
Has anyone tried an HHO fuel generator? What about bio diesel cost vs MPG? also, does propane injection on your diesel improve MPG vs the cost of the system? What kind of alternative fuels are people messing around with?

Bio blends in excess of 10% can cause fuel system problems on electronic engines. With the extreme pressures and temperatures the bio gets compressed and baked onto the surfaces and can plug up the works. 2-cycle DD's aren't bothered too much with bio blends but Cat engines are particularly sensitive.

HHO generators in theory sounds great. I have yet to see any scientific studies to show it actually does what it is advertised to do.

Propane injection is to diesel engines what nitrous oxide injection is to gas engines. It is used to give extra boost over short periods of time. If you use propane injection make sure you keep an eagle eye on your exhaust temps. It wouldn't be hard to melt your pistons pulling a long grade while using the propane injection.

Some have tried waste vegetable oil. If you can find a ready source of your base stock at no cost it works fairly well. But cleaning the chunks of leftover fries and fish sticks out of the base stock, keeping it warm enough to flow through the system, and finding enough to make it worthwhile pretty much stops this option before you ever get started. Going by a KFC or Burger King with a 5-gallon bucket to fuel up your VW Rabbit is one thing. Showing up in your bus with several 55-gallon barrels is a whole different story. One thing to remember, many places that used to pay to get rid of their WVO now lease the vegetable oil. When it goes into the WVO tank it already belongs to someone else.

Probably you best bet to get better fuel economy is to make sure your tires are properly inflated and consider using a fuel conditioner.

This one has worked really well for me for a lot of years: https://www.texasrefinery.com/produc...technology.pdf

ben2go 02-01-2018 03:21 PM

Diesel engines are run on propane and natural gas only. However, those engines are specifically set up to run such fuels exclusively, not in tandem with diesel fuel. Some gas engines can run propane or natural gas as well as gasoline. These engines are designed to run as dual fuel or tri-fuel. I know a little bit about running propane in older carb engines, but I know very little about diesel engines running on propane or natural gas. My aircraft fuel trucks ran on natural gas. The reason I think this is done is to stop people from running the trucks with avgas or jet fuel. Back then, those fuels were way more expensive than regular gasoline or diesel by nearly $2 per gallon. Both of my fuel trucks were turbo diesels but the fuel system was set up to deal with natural gas. They never left the airport so I don't know what the effiecency was like over the road. They weren't fueled up in a convention manner. I had a service truck top off our tanks once or twice a week. I changed the oil after so many hours of operation. The oil looked new at every change. No hydrocarbons, or very few, to contaminate the oil and turn it black.

2002Amtranvacationer 04-19-2018 08:51 AM

What kind of mileage do you get?
 
hi all just got my bus 2002 amtran 37.5 ft with t444e and i got 11+ mpg pulling a 2003 grand caravan from VA to TX 1000 miles at 60
so im happy with that I think when i done without the van i should get the same

Robbie in Maine 05-28-2018 05:15 PM

My bus is pretty much empty right now and has averaged 12 mpg over the last year. Hope it won't be much lower with 4 Harleys and 6 Humans on the way to Sturgis. After that, the conversion begins.

1998 Thomas on Freightliner chassis, 5.9 Cummins, 6-speed manual

Blueman 05-29-2018 02:04 AM

I have a 1992 b600 bluebird 53 passenger. Its a 2 speed rear end so i have 5 high or 5 low gears. It has a 6.6 ltr desiel engine. I get between 9-15 mpg. Depends on what i am towing, if anything.

EastCoastCB 05-29-2018 06:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueman (Post 272317)
I have a 1992 b600 bluebird 53 passenger. Its a 2 speed rear end so i have 5 high or 5 low gears. It has a 6.6 ltr desiel engine. I get between 9-15 mpg. Depends on what i am towing, if anything.

What ratios are in the rear?
I've only ever seen them with low or REALLY LOW.

Blueman 05-29-2018 10:40 AM

I honestly dont know the gear ratio. I never use the low gears and it will do 70 down the highway and at that speed my rpm's are at 2700. Low gears seem way to low unless im pulling something heavy at lower speeds

Johnny Mullet 05-29-2018 11:19 AM

My 7 window Thomas built bus with the International chassis and T444E 7.3L diesel gets 10 MPG no matter what. I got 10 MPG when I drove it home and still get 10 MPG after the build. Don't matter if I am running 65 MPH or 55 MPH, the MPG remains consistent.

gypsyfiredance 07-13-2018 12:35 AM

I plan on getting a short bus...what would give me the best gas mileage? I've read that diesel engines run/last longer too. Would you say that's accurate? And is it hard to find gas stations with diesel pumps in remote places?

cowlitzcoach 07-13-2018 03:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gypsyfiredance (Post 280294)
I plan on getting a short bus...what would give me the best gas mileage? I've read that diesel engines run/last longer too. Would you say that's accurate? And is it hard to find gas stations with diesel pumps in remote places?

If when you say you are planning on getting a short bus, if you mean a Type 'A' bus with either a Ford or GM cutaway chassis then the best power package is the Chevy/GMC G-3500/4500 with the 6.0L gas V-8 with the 6L80 transmission. In service they typically get 11-13 MPG. The next best choice is the Ford E-350/450 with the 7.3L diesel V-8. In service they typically get 12-14 MPG.

Very few Type 'A' buses delivered with the Duramax V-8 in a GM chassis as it is fairly uncommon to find one.

Newer Fords with the 6.0L diesel V-8 are not a good choice. Even when you go through them and "fix" the problems it doesn't necessarily stay fixed. There are some buses with Ford chassis that came with the V-10. When they run they are not a bad engine. But they do have issues and working on one in a van chassis is a real PITA. Older Fords with the 460 gas V-8 have a lot of go but think in terms of 4-6 MPG.

It is best to stay away from the buses that have the smaller engines. They are all capable but in a bus, even a short bus, the smaller engines have to work really hard to get the job done and generally don't get as good fuel mileage.

schirminator 07-13-2018 01:21 PM

1991 International Amtran 44 passenger DT444 AT545
 
I get 10 to 11 MPG on relatively flat ground. Way less in the mountains!

gypsyfiredance 07-13-2018 04:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach (Post 280300)
If when you say you are planning on getting a short bus, if you mean a Type 'A' bus with either a Ford or GM cutaway chassis then the best power package is the Chevy/GMC G-3500/4500 with the 6.0L gas V-8 with the 6L80 transmission. In service they typically get 11-13 MPG. The next best choice is the Ford E-350/450 with the 7.3L diesel V-8. In service they typically get 12-14 MPG.

Very few Type 'A' buses delivered with the Duramax V-8 in a GM chassis as it is fairly uncommon to find one.

Newer Fords with the 6.0L diesel V-8 are not a good choice. Even when you go through them and "fix" the problems it doesn't necessarily stay fixed. There are some buses with Ford chassis that came with the V-10. When they run they are not a bad engine. But they do have issues and working on one in a van chassis is a real PITA. Older Fords with the 460 gas V-8 have a lot of go but think in terms of 4-6 MPG.

It is best to stay away from the buses that have the smaller engines. They are all capable but in a bus, even a short bus, the smaller engines have to work really hard to get the job done and generally don't get as good fuel mileage.

So much good info to digest. I needed a good starting point for starting my bus search. Are there any particular years that are better than others. I've read and seen in a few videos that anything after 2003 is crap when changes were supposedly made.

RyanJames 07-16-2018 07:25 PM

2007 chevy 4500 shuttle bus, 6.6 duramax diesel, I get 11-14 mpg.

statue4 07-20-2018 10:35 AM

My Gillig Phantom 40-footer gets 7~8 on the highway. Way less in-town, of course. CAT 3208TA diesel.

cowlitzcoach 07-20-2018 11:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by gypsyfiredance (Post 280417)
So much good info to digest. I needed a good starting point for starting my bus search. Are there any particular years that are better than others. I've read and seen in a few videos that anything after 2003 is crap when changes were supposedly made.

Almost all pre-2000 are non-electronically controlled. Electronic controls can have problems that can be difficult to diagnose if you get a gremlin. The electronics also create a parasitic drain on your batteries unless you install a total battery shutoff.

2007 was the first year for the smog equipment. The smog equipment turned relatively reliable engines into garage queens. It turned other engines into disasters waiting to happen.

cadillackid 07-20-2018 11:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cowlitzcoach (Post 281491)
Almost all pre-2000 are non-electronically controlled. Electronic controls can have problems that can be difficult to diagnose if you get a gremlin. The electronics also create a parasitic drain on your batteries unless you install a total battery shutoff.

2007 was the first year for the smog equipment. The smog equipment turned relatively reliable engines into garage queens. It turned other engines into disasters waiting to happen.


Navistar released the T-444E in 1994 which is fully electronic.
the DT-466E was released in 1995.



Caterpillar started releasing electronic engines around the same time.



fully mechanical busses are getting much harder to come by these days.. the Exporters usually jump-on and bid these busses up on the major auctions.. or they are from up nort hand are rusty..



you can find them if you want them.. just have to be patient..



personally the electronic engines dont scare me.. full oin smog / emissions of 2007+ are a bit scary still because broken emissions equipment from the early years could physically damage / destroy the engine
-Christopher

goinbroke2 08-07-2018 05:01 PM

I consistently get 12-13mpg(Canadian) and I drive 100-105kms at 25-2700rpm. 8.2 turbo/5spd manual and rear ended all matched out of a dump truck. Rear is 5.67 or something like that. I burn furnace oil, filtered veg oil, had fluid, heck anything I can get my hands on that is clean. Yes, been a heavy diesel mechanic for 32 years so I have heard all the "omgosh!" Lol.
Don't lug below 1700 and don't rev above 2700( I know it's governed at 3000 but I like mpg more than mph.

I would like a 13spd or a splitter, something to reduce the 1000rpm spread between 5 and 4.

Yes I love the old girl.

HoggerTheNomad 08-20-2018 06:29 PM

Just purchased my 1999 E350 shorty with the 7.3 turbo diesel. Headed from Atlanta to Arizona..about 2 k miles. I have no clue but guessing 5 to 8 mpg..not being a math guy. I'm thinking close to 600 bucks in fuel alone.
Am I even close ??
Appreciate it !! I have a 2 k emergency fund. Not much but time ran out on me. Doing the best I can..Around 30 days and I'm hitting the road.
See ya'll on the other side !


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