School Bus Conversion Resources

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Tcave 02-21-2018 12:11 AM

We Finally Pulled The Trigger
 
A big Pacific Northwest shout out to all the skoolie owners and armchair enthusiast waiting to get bit by the bug. My wife and I finally pulled the trigger on our first bus last weekend a 1995 Bluebird tc/2000 with 114,000 miles on it.

Tires are great, fires right up and purrs like a kitten. Hoping to transform it into the ultimate camping mobile for our family. Looking for ideas from rooftop deck to basic electrical and plumbing but starting with seat removal and tearing out the floor as there is a few soft spots. Any idea what is under the plywood floor on a 1995 bluebird? Also we are wondering if the ceiling really needs to be re-insulated? Picking the bus up this weekend and hoping to get started.

All of you have been an inspiration. Thanks for all the post.

Robin97396 02-21-2018 12:34 AM

Welcome and glad to see more NW skoolie owners.
Nice choice on a mechanical engine. They’re getting harder to find.
It’s likely there is metal sheeting under the plywood floor. Sometimes it’s a little less than metal sheeting. It’s a surprise at times, but almost certainly rusty sheet steel.
You’re going to have fun with this build, at least part of the time.

Johnny Mullet 02-21-2018 06:18 AM

Welcome to the site!

Tcave 02-21-2018 09:36 AM

Thanks for the input. Looking forward to getting our hands dirty. Hope to see ya around.

Tcave 03-01-2018 02:12 PM

Good Afternoon. Hoping you may be able to give me some insight into where to get insurance for my bus conversion. Apparently Allstate won't insure me with it? Any guidance would be appreciated.

Travis

weboughtabus 03-01-2018 03:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tcave (Post 256527)
Good Afternoon. Hoping you may be able to give me some insight into where to get insurance for my bus conversion. Apparently Allstate won't insure me with it? Any guidance would be appreciated.

Travis

Welcome to the site Travis! I'd recommend checking out the Titling and Insurance Section. There is a lot of discussion and experience in there. The TL/DR would be to go to an independent insurance broker and tell them you need a commercial for personal use policy. Don't mention school buses. Don't tell them it's being converted.

Robin97396 03-01-2018 04:16 PM

That sounds just right.

One thing I might add is do not apply for RV plates at this point. If you get RV plates you'll likely need to show that it has RV type facilities, which it does not have yet, in order to get RV insurance. It's not an RV yet and it's not a truck. Truck licensing is expensive. Regular car type plates are easy and legal, depending on your state.

PNW_Steve 03-01-2018 04:21 PM

Welcome,

I have registered two buses in WA in the last two years and not had to show the conversion.

I titled and registered them immediately as RV's.

Take a minute and fill out your profile so we know where you are and bus details:smile:

Best wishes on your journey!

Robin97396 03-01-2018 04:34 PM

Maybe you've got one of those trustworthy faces?

I've heard numerous times that people had to show evidence of the facilities in their bus before they could get RV insurance.

Here I can't get RV plates unless I have the required number of facilities and systems on my bus. And yes I know others are able to get RV plates even before the seats are removed.

o1marc 03-01-2018 04:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robin97396 (Post 256556)
Maybe you've got one of those trustworthy faces?

I've heard numerous times that people had to show evidence of the facilities in their bus before they could get RV insurance.

Here I can't get RV plates unless I have the required number of facilities and systems on my bus. And yes I know others are able to get RV plates even before the seats are removed.

Insurance is usually tougher on the details than the DMV. Once you leave DMV they are pretty much through with you. Insurance has a more personal relationship with you.

PNW_Steve 03-01-2018 04:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robin97396 (Post 256556)
Maybe you've got one of those trustworthy faces?

I've heard numerous times that people had to show evidence of the facilities in their bus before they could get RV insurance.

Here I can't get RV plates unless I have the required number of facilities and systems on my bus. And yes I know others are able to get RV plates even before the seats are removed.

I would guess that they were not in Washington. Things do vary significantly by state.

Washington does have similar requirements but they do not check. I was ready with easily r&r'ed: bed, toilet etc but I did not need them. Just signed the affadavit and was done.

Asetechrail 03-01-2018 05:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PNW_Steve (Post 256562)
I would guess that they were not in Washington. Things do vary significantly by state.

Washington does have similar requirements but they do not check. I was ready with easily r&r'ed: bed, toilet etc but I did not need them. Just signed the affadavit and was done.

Iím in Washington also. When I did the title change and registration I didnít have to sign anything. I asked them to retitle it as a motorhome and they did. Gave me my plates, took my money, and that was it.

Twigg 03-01-2018 05:50 PM

Oklahoma is an affidavit state, no checks.

I signed the document detailing the changes I was making "on or about" the date I signed it.

If anyone asks, I made the changes and have pulled them all out for upgrading.

Robin97396 03-01-2018 08:32 PM

Things could have changed since it's been some years since I applied for RV plates for a bus. Previously you had to have four out of seven ammenities/appliances in the vehicle to qualify as an RV. Back then they did not consider a composting toilet to be a real fixture.

Twigg 03-01-2018 08:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robin97396 (Post 256608)
Things could have changed since it's been some years since I applied for RV plates for a bus. Previously you had to have four out of seven ammenities/appliances in the vehicle to qualify as an RV. Back then they did not consider a composting toilet to be a real fixture.

There is an issue with composting toilets. State regs haven't caught up, but that shouldn't be much of an impediment in most places as they usually give a list, and you don't have to have everything on the list.


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