Skoolies

(Bus RV Conversions)

 

It was one of my big goals at one time to convert a old school bus into a motorhome. I had thought I had the perfect one all picked out, but, even though we had a price all worked out, the other boss at the last second decided to donate the bus, a 1989 All American 8.3L 84 passenger bus, to the fire department to practice cutting it up...That got me...

 

Why a school bus?


I first considered the offerings from the RV industry: travel-trailers, class
C and class A motorhomes, fifth wheels, etc. Some of them are fine products; but mostly I found that RVs are constructed with inefficient appliances, poor
insulation, too much emphasis on presentation over function, and high price tags.
Perhaps the biggest consideration for me was that I could not truly customize a manufactured RV to meet my requirements.

One day the idea of converting a school bus crossed my mind. After some research on the topic,the advantages became clear to me.

 

Here was my first idea...

 

And my second.


School buses are built stout enough to handle roll-overs.


Their gound clearance is superior to most RVs


School buses are built on true Medium Duty truck chassis; I invite you to crawl under a school bus just once to marvel at the beefiness of the frame and axles. You will be impressed, especially if you've ever seen the frames supporting most RVs.


Some diesel school bus engines can go for 250,000 miles before any overhaul work
is required.


Diesel engines can also run on biodiesel, straight vegetable oil or waste
vegetable oil with little or no modification. ( No, the exhaust won't smell like a french fry...)


School buses can be had cheaply, if you are patient, shop around and do your homework.


School districts usually take care of their buses, following strict maintenance schedules, which means, mechanically, recently-retired school buses should hold few surprises, andmaintenance records should be available.

Of course, I would be remiss if the disadvantages were omitted:


The ceiling height in most buses is just over 6 feet in the center aisle (though the roof can be raised).


They are usually geared low for city street driving, not highway cruising.


Scraping years of petrified boogers and gum from under the seats is less fun than it sounds.

 

Lets look at a few...I have re-sized them so I can fit in and out beside each other.

 

Just food for thought. Make it yourself, make it your way!

 

This bus is beautiful, in and out!

 

All American conversion...Nice overhead.

 

Another All American, and another overhead...Nice use of rope!

 

This is done nice too..Another All American.

 

Here are a few well thought out floor plans so you can see the possibilities...

 

The possibilities are endless...

 

Some of these buses have so much potential and I am sure will look great when all done. These are projects that are forever changing, and this is just to show what can be done...Your mileage may vary, of course...

 

More to come!