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Older Mini School Bus- 2 Buy or Not 2 Buy??
#1
I've been hunting for a shuttle bus. But all the good ones that are late 90's -present are pretty expensive. I could finance one. I hate financing anything. I've been in TT's for the last 12 yrs as a full time nomad. Well I found an old mini school bus by accident. I saw it in the background of an ad for some other vehicles for sale. Turns out the man will sell it. It's probably an early 1990's Ford E350 version. The paint is faded but no rust. It runs and drives. It has low mileage on a 7.3 liter diesel. Which I already own two trucks with that engine at present time. By buying this one at hopefully a good deal (I haven't got the asking price yet or the actual mileage.) 
My question to yall is should I buy a cheaper older school bus to be able togo ahead and pull the trigger on my build part. Or should I wait until I get more $$ saved up and get a newer shuttle bus..then save more money to get the goodies for the build? 
I was "trying" to think of it as a "starter" vehicle that I could get into quicker. And then sell it later and move all my  goodies out of it and into a newer shuttle bus like I really want. 
I have a well paying career and good credit. But I just suck at saving money. But I'm really really sick of pulling around this 37 ft TT 5th wheel when its only me. And I'm not sure how much longer my 1997 F350 will be able to do it. 
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#2
Telling someone what to buy is a deeply personal thing. 

Stand back and ask if that is you sitting there. Can you see yourself coming home to that bus every night?  There are a lot of bus dwellers out there. I met one guy with a old Greyhound and a large cargo trailer. Lots of solar for his freezers. I built on a E450 transit bus. The real long ones are less money.
Compared to parenting, Cat herding is less complicated
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#3
(03-22-2018, 06:40 PM)GotSmart Wrote: Telling someone what to buy is a deeply personal thing. 
 ^^ EXACTLY! ^^ Besides, you need to go look at it in person, drive it both were it is, and on the freeway. 
Having gotten the above disclaimer out of the way, I think it would make a really cool project. Take your time, do it right, and it would make a nice tiny home. That, and you can still tow a trailer once you've mounted a hitch and wiring. I am also somewhat familiar with those IH Diesels. It'll be fine as long as you're not in a hurry. I think you know what I mean.  Tongue
 The Captain and Crew Finally got their stuff together. 
 Now if they can only remember where they put it.   Rolleyes
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#4
In my own personal world, when I know what I want and then get something else to speed up the process, i'm ultimately never happy. And then in the end, finally get what I wanted in the first place and after all is said and done I spent more than if I just got what I wanted in the first place. Not just vehicles, pretty much anything in life goes that way for me personally.......needed a large air compressor last year, couldn't get the one i wanted that was close to 2k. Got a cheap box store made in China one that can't refill the tank fast enough to do what i need it to do. At almost half the cost of the one I wanted, I should have just waited a few more months and got the one I knew I wanted.
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#5
i tend to like short busses over shuttle busses because they usually have higher ride heights
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#6
For me the process is— exhaustively research the market and available choices. When I bought my boat, I knew the entire state of the market for that model-/ eg nationally I could tell you whichvwere good ones and which weren’t. This was after several years of researching boats and becoming interested in different ones until I found the right model— but not the actual boat.
When when one came up for sale nearby I went and saw it and knew it was exactly the right boat to buy. (then I had to pretend like I wasn’t too interested to avoid driving up the price!)

When you have mastered the market and your needs, when you see the right vehicle you will know it.

Is that what you’re feeling right now? Or are you feeling desperate to buy something?


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#7
If it doesn’t run you might be able to tow it...
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#8
(03-22-2018, 06:40 PM)GotSmart Wrote: Telling someone what to buy is a deeply personal thing. 

Stand back and ask if that is you sitting there. Can you see yourself coming home to that bus every night?  There are a lot of bus dwellers out there. I met one guy with a old Greyhound and a large cargo trailer. Lots of solar for his freezers. I built on a E450 transit bus. The real long ones are less money.

I like that first sentence ! 
IDK about seeing myself coming home to it. I keep looking at the discouragement that I feel every time I come back into this 37 ft 5th wheel. Want I "Really" want is an extended body transit bus. Probably what you have. I was very happy in my first 18 ft TT. It was a POS. But it got me out of staying in hotels for work which saved me $1000/month out of my per diem. Which went directly tax free into my pocket. I then moved up to a bigger TT (29ft BP) for 3 years. Then I got "convinced"  by my now EX- GF that "we" needed this big SOB.
I'm was thinking that I could do the same deal with the minibus. Move my way up. Then possibly as I learn more and more and save even more money by using it that I could sell it in a year or so to a beginner nomad. Then go get the one I want. Only thing is ..I want a 2003 E350 or E450 transit with low mileage on a 7.3 diesel.  I already have two trucks with that engine and one parts truck with the same engine. Most all paorts interchange. But the longer I wait for the 2003 the harder they will be to find.  

Thank you for your time to reply and your advice !!
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#9
(03-22-2018, 07:07 PM)Ballenxj Wrote:
(03-22-2018, 06:40 PM)GotSmart Wrote: Telling someone what to buy is a deeply personal thing. 
 ^^ EXACTLY! ^^ Besides, you need to go look at it in person, drive it both were it is, and on the freeway. 
Having gotten the above disclaimer out of the way, I think it would make a really cool project. Take your time, do it right, and it would make a nice tiny home. That, and you can still tow a trailer once you've mounted a hitch and wiring. I am also somewhat familiar with those IH Diesels. It'll be fine as long as you're not in a hurry. I think you know what I mean.  Tongue

I have two trucks with this engine that run. (1997 F350 4dr single wheel 2wd with 220K miles, and 1995 F350 4dr dual rear wheels 2wd with 330K miles .....and then a 1994 F350 4dr dually parts truck. All rock solid engines. And decent fuel mileage. 

Thank you for your input !!
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#10
(03-22-2018, 07:45 PM)Everyroadleadshome Wrote: In my own personal world,  when I know what I want and then get something else to speed up the process, i'm ultimately never happy.  And then in the end, finally get what I wanted in the first place and after all is said and done I spent more than if I just got what I wanted in the first place.  Not just vehicles, pretty much anything in life goes that way for me personally.......needed a large air compressor last year,  couldn't get the one i wanted that was close to 2k.  Got a cheap box store made in China one that can't refill the tank fast enough to do what i need it to do.  At almost half the cost of the one I wanted, I should have just waited a few more months and got the one I knew I wanted.

I am guilty of this too. That's why I am tossed between getting it or waiting.  Thank you !
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to RepublicOfTXPatriot for this post:
  • Everyroadleadshome (03-24-2018)
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