Skoolie Conversion

TZCHRIS

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That's awesome! Have seen so many cool conversations over the last few years. Big market for them right now. Keep us posted.
 
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Looking forward to seeing this progress. How do you pick one out of a fleet that size?!
 
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xjma99

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Leather couches, and a hammoc. Also. A mini split AC. If you’re fancy a separate generator for the AC, and provisions for powering it with shore power. Have fun! Paint it camo!
 

Parker Duofold

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I used to work for a company in NH that sold used school buses. People do all kinds of things with the buses and there are websites devoted to "skoolie" projects.

The bus the OP bought looks like an International to me. Rear engine "pusher" maybe.

Good luck and have fun with your project.
 

KBCraig

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I have a couple of friends doing Skoolies right now. One of them in NH, the other in the Carolinas.

The big thing to watch is weight. I've seen conversions that used the same materials you'd use in a house, and I shudder at how much weight that added (with the corresponding loss of fuel efficiency).
 
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So cool...keep us posted. Seen a bunch that look pretty sweet to travel with.
 

Climbnsink

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Skydivers have been doing bus conversions for decades. Cool to see it go mainstream. Used to travel in a converted city bus. Destination sign had Van Halen on tour and similar programmed into it. Pull into a McDonalds and the manager would come out and ask how many thinking it was a tourist bus then meeting only a couple of young dirtbags they'd be wondering what band is this? Should I know these people?
 
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Go Retro 60's!


.......C'mon get happyyyyyy!!!!! [grin]


The neighbors daughter and her boyfriend are in the process of doing this (a camper conversion not a Partridge Family bus) right now. they've been documenting it on YT.
Wish I were them...lol.

I've wanted to do something like this for quite a while but have never had the extra funds for it. I hadn't heard of the whole "skoolie" thing until recently. I guess that's why used school buses have gone way up in price from when I first started looking and periodically still do.
 
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PennyPincher

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What does a used bus cost?
anywhere from $300-$30k+

many people buy through auction. We chose to buy through a dealer who has been serving the skoolie community for a number of years. He buys them at auction, gets them running, and they have to be able to pass AZ state inspections. He gets mostly rave reviews. Sometimes he gets an a**h*** and he can be an a**h*** back. We went on at least a 90 minute test drive with him before buying the bus. He also went over a bunch of stuff with my husband. It was 103 degrees yesterday in AZ! The guy was very straight up. We had decided to rent a car and I am following my husband as he drives the bus. This was in case we had a break down and also make life easier as we stop each night to find some dinner by driving the car. It is also the first time my husband has driven a vehicle this big so I tail him and when he needs to change lanes I go first as a "blocker." I can also warn him about a**h***s coming up past him. I have a GPS in the car set to the length, height and approx weight of the bus so it makes sure we don't go down roads that would be problematic for the Skoolie. Also, when we get "home" we have to park the bus at an RV storage yard and with the rental car we will be able to get home. Hopefully should be home tomorrow and the car is due back at the airport on Sunday where our minivan is parked. Oh yeah, tickets to PHX were $45 each.
 

PennyPincher

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Looking forward to seeing this progress. How do you pick one out of a fleet that size?!
We have been looking for a while and we knew what we wanted. And they aren't all that common. We knew we wanted a rear engine (aka pusher) and wanted to stay under 35'. 35' is the cut off for many parks (national parks, rv, state parks, etc). They also have a great turning radius and you don't need to worry about a lot of tail swing because of where the rear wheels are. The first one we put a deposit on was actually 31.5' but we decided not to fly back in March when all this C19 was breaking out - NY had several hot spots and no one really knew how contagious this was. So we received our deposit back and just kept looking and waiting and this one finally came available. So we saw it 2 weeks ago, placed our deposit and made arrangements to go check it out fully willing to say no and fly home if we weren't comfortable with the bus or the people we were dealing with.

Also, some of those buses are already owned and there being repaired. Others recently came in from auctions and need to go through their shop before they go on the market. Also, the owner's skoolie was on the lot. I should have taken a picture. It was a 1964 something. It was SWEET.
 

PennyPincher

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I used to work for a company in NH that sold used school buses. People do all kinds of things with the buses and there are websites devoted to "skoolie" projects.

The bus the OP bought looks like an International to me. Rear engine "pusher" maybe.

Good luck and have fun with your project.
EXACTLY!
 

enbloc

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I want an 'up-armored' olive-drab gasser with tail & roof gunners and active counter-measures...

1588994892425.png

And an 'under-belly' escape hatch...

1588995088976.png
 
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kevin9

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anywhere from $300-$30k+

many people buy through auction. We chose to buy through a dealer who has been serving the skoolie community for a number of years. He buys them at auction, gets them running, and they have to be able to pass AZ state inspections. He gets mostly rave reviews. Sometimes he gets an a**h*** and he can be an a**h*** back. We went on at least a 90 minute test drive with him before buying the bus. He also went over a bunch of stuff with my husband. It was 103 degrees yesterday in AZ! The guy was very straight up. We had decided to rent a car and I am following my husband as he drives the bus. This was in case we had a break down and also make life easier as we stop each night to find some dinner by driving the car. It is also the first time my husband has driven a vehicle this big so I tail him and when he needs to change lanes I go first as a "blocker." I can also warn him about a**h***s coming up past him. I have a GPS in the car set to the length, height and approx weight of the bus so it makes sure we don't go down roads that would be problematic for the Skoolie. Also, when we get "home" we have to park the bus at an RV storage yard and with the rental car we will be able to get home. Hopefully should be home tomorrow and the car is due back at the airport on Sunday where our minivan is parked. Oh yeah, tickets to PHX were $45 each.
Awesome.
Do you have a link to the dealer?
Do you need a CDL for a bus that size for personal/conversion use?
 

Parker Duofold

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Do you need a CDL for a bus that size for personal/conversion use?
Generally speaking, state laws differ, you should not title your bus as a school bus. You should title it as an RV or motor home then you can drive it without a CDL. Before the purchase, make sure the bus has a clear title.
 
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