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Author Topic: Ok i think i am officially crazy.....someone please talk me out of this...  (Read 9786 times)

The Sofa King

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I keep looking at all theses old greyhound and school busses on ebay going for a couple of thousand bucks.. and i also keep looking at the thread in here about that guy who did the rv conversion..  i have th etools and the skills to do something like this.. it looks pretty straight forward.. i just stripped out a travl trailer so i have all the rv parts.. transformers switching units lights etc..

what type of buss would be the best starting point..it seems that a majority of the ones i have been looking at have  detroit powerplants  and allison transmissions
 what in particular should i look for in a powerplant and transmission...

someone please talk me out of this.. lol
Mike, Jenine, Owen, Ryan, and our Boxer Maggie


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  • Ned and Lorna are former full time RVers
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Lots of people have converted buses to RV use but it's a long process.  Do a Google search on bus conversion and you'll find lots of references.  I don't know anyone here that has done it.  There is nothing wrong with a Detroit engine and Allison transmission, it's an excellent combination.

Why would you want to be talked out of it?  It could be a fun project.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon


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If you decide to go ahead with that project, you'd be doing many of us a big favor if you could document it as you proceed. Snap 'before', 'during' and 'after' photos and take notes and keep us informed of your progress.

It sounds like a fascinating project, but one too big for me to tackle.
Tom.  Need help? Click the Help button in the toolbar above.

The Sofa King

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here is a bus that grabbed my attention...   short wheel base.. low miles... it will need airbags to tone down the harsh ride.. but.... hmmmmmm...


« Last Edit: August 21, 2007, 09:58:21 AM by The Sofa King »
Mike, Jenine, Owen, Ryan, and our Boxer Maggie


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In the midwest there have been many a touring bus Preferablly, because plumbing is generally already in it to some degree.   I've seen a couple of projects over the years that are just mind boggling.  Fantastic jobs.  If you have the skills go for it.  In fact if you are any where around the MO area, there is a bus trader/salvage  juy just a few miles northeast of Lebanon, Mo that has several units of that nature. It's location on the frontage road of US 44.  Good lot on your project and please do keep records and photos.  JMO
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO


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  • Bill & Jolene/USA 97 Southwind 35P
    • WorKamping in Yellowstone
Sounds like a neat project, but, I would want a little bigger unit to start with.  Not a lot of real estate in 23' to do a layout.

Start with inside dimensions and sketch out what you need. 

Bill & Jolene W & Koda

Old Faithful, Yellowstone Association Bookstore
1997 Southwind 35P
Toads: 1997 Honda Accord (sold) & 1986 Westfalia (sold), and now 2000 Suzuki Grand Vitara.
FMCA F-401354
1995 OMI Dobro F-60

Gary RV_Wizard

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I agree with Bill - a 23 footer is awful small to invest all that labor in.  If I were going to do this, I'd be looking for a tour bus rather than a school bus, but they are probably a lot more expensive to get one in decent mechanical condition.
Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL


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My son has been kicking around this idea also but for a hunting camp RV.  Nothing too fancy. Maybe 3-4  bunks, and  a counter to cook on and refrigerator.  He wants something that can tow his Jeep to the campsite.  A smaller school bus would probably work out well.  He is also considering a used U-haul 26 ft box truck as it is already setup for towing. 

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4

Tempe, Arizona


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On the plus side- I saw a wheelchair lift. If that works, you could sell that for close to the price of the bus!


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If I were you, I'd start with an Eagle, with it's Torsillastic Suspension.
And, the Detroit 8V-92 is much, much better, stronger, and more powererful
than the old outdated and underpowered 8V-71.
Heck, instead of building one from scratch, you oughta buy mine.  I have
a 1969 Eagle, with the Alison 740 Automatic Trans., Kubota/Wrico diesel
I have over $160,000 invested in it, and will sell it for $65,000. because my
wife wants one with Slide-outs.
McCord, oldphart11@windstream.net, Kerrville, Texas