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Frochevy 07-25-2021 10:30 PM


Originally Posted by peakbus (Post 447279)
So nice to enjoy the fruits of your labor!

Yes!! The problem with that is I quit working on it and just enjoy it... Lol I still need to finish some trim work inside, build some storage compartments under the skirt outside and paint it!!!

Frochevy 07-25-2021 10:49 PM

Generator plug/propane
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Ive had plans to install an automatic transfer switch in the bus so I could run the generator off of propane. I figured out where I would mount the generator and needed to run propane line ane more electric for the generator to plug into. So I built a housing out of sheet metal to hold my generator plug and to also guard my propane line outlet.

This propane line is used for running my generator and also use it to runs grill or large griddle when camping. I think it turned out ok. I was kind of in a hurry so it could have been better, but it serves it's purpose for now.

Frochevy 07-25-2021 10:59 PM

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I used 18 ga sheet metal to build the box. First I created a test piece to make sure the depth of my plug would be ok. And I just really like bending sheet metal on a brake to create parts! After I got my test piece done, I cut proper hole size for the plug and started bending. Once complete, I traced out a side piece and a gusset. I TIG welded the end on and gusset inside, tried to smooth everything up. I also made a cutout to easily access the on off valve for the propane quick connect. Then I primed and painted and clear coated. ( Later I found out I probably really didn't the cutout) oh well.

I bought another 30amp cord and cut the end off with just enough cord left to wire back on a plug. That makes up my short cord from the transfer switch plug to the generator output plug. My dad helped me install the transfer switch behind the driver seat next to the fridge enclosure. This is close to my shore power outlet as well so writing was easy.

Did a test run and works well. Fire the generator up and it automatically switched to gen power without resetting fridge or clocks, etc. I can still plug my normal cord into here when tailgating if I don't want the generator at the back of the bus.

Forgot to mention my broken quick shade worked out well for a sunblock on a very hot evening I decided to run the propane line and work on the plug box!

Frochevy 09-08-2021 12:18 PM

Past due updates
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It's been awhile since I've made updates on here. I have done alot to the bus and been camping in it quite a few times since my last update. One thing I did was cut the front passenger side above the windshield to make a new storage area. I picked up some killmat which is like a cheaper version of a dynamat sound deadener. I out some up front behind the top front lights and noticed a decrease in temperature by adding this.

I also added some tabs for safety chains beside my rear hitch. I also installed a new trailer plug which has 7pin and 4 pin hook ups.

Frochevy 09-08-2021 12:33 PM

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We went to Skiatook OK back in June and I pulled out boat down there with the bus. The air bag system worked awesome! Bus ran good. The only issue was the rooftop RV air conditioner doesn't seem to cool very well while going down the highway. The generator ran great on propane and the transfer switch worked flawlessly. Anyone know if it's normal for an RV AC not to cool correctly while driving?

I also wanted to show a picture of my "idiot stick". My dad told me that is what the grass cutting device is called when I was young. When I asked why they were called an idot stick, his response was it takes an idiot to run one when you could use a mower/trimmer... Lol it comes in handy for certain campgrounds.

I also installed a new dimming led light in our bathroom. It acts like a night light and we dim it down all the way and point it at the toilet so my son doesn't miss when he gets up early in the morning to use the bathroom!

Frochevy 09-08-2021 12:47 PM

Storage boxes
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I finally broke down and bought two tool boxes to mount under the frame for external storage. I ended up getting buyers brand boxes and ordered them from home Depot. It was cheaper than Amazon.

It was pretty simple to install the boxes after I came up with a game plan. I measured about 10 times before I cut the skirting. The 36" box bolted right up to the existing supports under body for the battery box. I used a jack to hold it up in place and drilled through the box and supports at once. Note the pry bar is a trick to apply upward pressure to the drill and very little pressure makes drilling in this position easy. I mean almost the weight of the bar itself helps.

The rear box is 24" box and I had to weld a couple of 1" sq tubing to the existing supports in order to bolt this one in place. I welded weld nuts to the top of the tubing for the bolts to engage.

I actually bolted the tubing to the box after drilling holes and welding nuts to the tubing. Then I jacked the whole thing in place and tacked the supports. After that I unbolted box and removed so I could weld the supports in place.

peakbus 09-08-2021 06:44 PM

Nice job on the tool boxes! I need to add that to my list.

Frochevy 09-08-2021 09:59 PM


Originally Posted by peakbus (Post 452313)
Nice job on the tool boxes! I need to add that to my list.

Thanks!! They weren't real cheap... But extra storage on a shorty is priceless in my opinion!!

Frochevy 09-08-2021 10:12 PM

Sanding... Sanding .... And more sanding
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We started sanding on the bus over a week ago. Last Saturday we had a sanding party along with a watch party for the KSU football game (which was played down at Dallas). We had plenty of help and got some good work done. I bought 2 dual action Bauer brand sanders as well as one corner one. And went through about $25 of sanding sponges.

The top of the fiber glass cap up front had a large crack along with a bunch of small stress cracks across the front. So I used some fiberglass mat and resin and fixed those then added some filler to smooth up. I also used some filler on the front and back of where it used to say school bus. I had a couple spots to fix behind the driver side around the fridge vents. I don't do body work very well and I don't care for it. But it is what it is...

I ordered a single stage urethane paint with activator from Eastwood. The color we chose was Destroyer Gray. It was supposed to arrive last Saturday so I could paint over labor day weekend. It didn't show up until yesterday...

So I had time Monday to clean up the front and rear bumper and back platform and re paint them.

We decided to go with two purple ribs on each side as well as front and back inlay up top where it used to say school bus. More pics to come!! Btw... Did I mention I don't care for body work?

Frochevy 09-08-2021 10:29 PM

Masking tape?
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I decided to paint the little rear bumper covers purple as well. The paint arrived Tuesday right before lunch. So I took the afternoon off work so we could get it painted!! My wife and I started masking around 1230pm and masked until around 5pm or after. I underestimated the time that would take!!! Wow! Way more than masking off a Nova or Chevy short wide...

I used a harbor freight hvlp gun that I bought 15 yrs ago. It has been almost 10 years since the last time I painted with it. Worked great! No problems. I had my wife and her dad on paint refill duty, .moving ladders and air hose. We used a gallon of urethane single stage mixed with slow (above 80 degree) activator. I didn't need to thin it at all and it seemed to paint pretty smooth. (I'm not a professional obviously) I had purchased two gallons but ended up getting two coats on mostly everything. I was going to go more, but was worried about the dropping temp as it was after 7pm.

The wind shifted North as planned so I parked it on the south side of my in-laws shop and it was a nice windblock. I started at the front on top and worked all the way around on top then worked my way down and around. Total paint time was only 30-45 min... Way quicker than masking!!!

So glad to get it done and can't wait to pull the tape off to see the accent color pop! It's not a show car so I have a few runs, and some orange peel in places. I have some bugs that flew into the hood. Oh well. It's not yellow anymore!!! I hope this urethane holds us well! Time will tell. More pics to come!

Frochevy 09-08-2021 10:41 PM

Pulled the tape off today!!
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My mother in law removed most of the tape/paper today while I was at work! (She's awesome and always a big help) we got everything removed this evening and put back together where needed. I am planning to head to the lake tomorrow evening after work so I'm cutting this close! Then will be tailgating first KSU home game on Saturday...

Got the bus back home this evening and couldn't stand it, I had to jack it up and put on the wheel simulators that I ordered 1.5-2yrs ago... I wouldn't let myself put them on until the bus was painted. I think it really sets off the finished look. Hopefully tomorrow I will get some pics of the other side and share. I really like how the tool box storage situation turned out. It almost looks factory now that everything is painted same color.

All in all I'm happy with it. Wife loves it!! So that's important. There's a few yellow spots that I messed the tape up etc, but I'll touch them up later maybe next week. I'm so glad to get this part of the build over with! Big thanks to watching some of you guys paint your buses that it inspired me to get ours done!!

plfking 09-09-2021 06:32 AM

Purple and gray.......was there ever any question?:smile:

The whole thing looks terrific.....mucho kudos for all the great work. You really hit it out of the park.

Frochevy 09-09-2021 07:16 AM


Originally Posted by plfking (Post 452376)
Purple and gray.......was there ever any question?:smile:

The whole thing looks terrific.....mucho kudos for all the great work. You really hit it out of the park.

You would expect no less having a little purple in there!! 😁

Thanks for the kind comments! I wanted to keep the main color neutral in case we ever decide to sell it.

Phatman 09-09-2021 08:16 AM


Originally Posted by Frochevy (Post 452378)
You would expect no less having a little purple in there!! 😁

Thanks for the kind comments! I wanted to keep the main color neutral in case we ever decide to sell it.

It looks GREAT !!! Frochevy. What paint did you use?

Frochevy 09-09-2021 08:23 AM


Originally Posted by Phatman (Post 452385)
It looks GREAT !!! Frochevy. What paint did you use?


The purple is just some Rust-Oleum purple with a Rust-Oleum clear coat over it. The only purple we liked that was urethane from Eastwood I would to have bought two gallons worth and mixed together.

The main gray color is a single stage urethane from Eastwood and the color is "Destroyer Gray" I mixed it 3 parts paint and 1 part Activator. I used the "slow" activator which is good for above 80 degrees.

It says you can add reducer if needed (which I purchased) but didn't need to thin any to spray.

Danjo 09-09-2021 09:00 AM

Wow that looks great!

Bert06840 09-09-2021 09:32 AM

Looks amazing. Iím going for a slightly warmer version of that color!

Kentucky Dreaming 09-09-2021 11:16 AM

That's one mighty fine lookin' bus!!!!
You've done a great job on it!:dance::bow:

BMWNJ 09-09-2021 02:02 PM

nice job! looks great!

ISAF2009 09-09-2021 03:54 PM

Killer man seriously nice job.

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