Newbiehere- Going to check out my first bus! Thoughts on it?
Hello skoolie community!
I've decided that I would like to commit to a build and do part-time skoolie life with my boyfriend and our dog since we're both WFH software engineers and love traveling. Since we'll only be going on extended trips and not full-time, we've decided on a short bus. I'm looking in particular for 6 windows since we will have to have workstations for both of us in the bus.
I luckily found a 2010 Chevrolet G3500 Mid Bus with a 6.0 gas engine and 101k miles, it's from a wealthy school district and they sent me all the service records for it... damn have they care for this thing well. From the pictures it looks awesome, no signs of rust. It's pretty much my dream bus at this moment. However, it is from CT, so I'm checking it out in person to see how must rust it has. I'm in MA and a huge trip to a state outside the rust belt and driving back with a bus that I'm not familiar with is super intimidating, so the fact that this one is in CT takes off a load of stress aside from the possibility of rust.
So, before I go check it out in person, is there anything with this bus that I should make sure I get answers on/ check out in person while I'm there? Are there known issues with this type of bus? I know some folks say to avoid gasoline and go for diesel, but is that a deal breaker? And if nothing is wrong with it, what would you expect to pay for this?
This is the first bus that I'm checking out too, so I'd really appreciate if you give me your advice to avoid first-time-viewing mistakes!
I just did a search of this forum for 'bus inspection checklist' and got at least a half dozen hits.
It might be good to start there, then ask the forum folks any followup questions.
Since you've confirmed it has lived it's life here in the notorious "Rust Belt" of the nation, and thus it has likely seen 10 winters, it has to have some degree of chassis/undercarriage rust/rot.
If the wealthy school district kept it garaged, and religiously washed the vehicle in winter months, (unlikely), it might not have a "terminal" rust condition.
Anyhoo, a thorough undercarriage inspection is highly recommended. Can't stress "highly" enough!
The GM base drivetrain platform is good, and it sounds like they maintained it as they should, so it might be a fair deal in the $3~$4K price range. All depends on who you are buying it from. A surplus auction is going to get your best priced bus, 9 out of 10 times.
A broker/dealer is going to add 30-50% markup after auction. My opinion only.
Good luck, and post pics if you go forward with it...
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