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Survivalism & Self Sufficiency Topics => Transportation => Topic started by: statesofmind on December 13, 2010, 04:13:44 PM

Title: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on December 13, 2010, 04:13:44 PM
Here's my latest bus.  This will be my 3rd and largest.  I'll include much of the same systems as the one I just sold.  It will have 12v on-board power throughout utilizing a bank of 6 deep cycle batteries and 4 100w panels.  Heat is from a propane furnace and a slick little woodstove.  I have a buddy who makes these stoves for marine use and/or ice fishing.  They work perfect.  Fridge is 12v and propane.  I will have onboard 50 gal. h2o storage for drinking water.  Wastetank holds grey water.  I have a water pump that is mounted on the engine and uses drive belt to pump new water to tank for filtration.  I do not have a full lavatory since I spend all my time in the woods.  I will have an on demand propane water heater with small shower, water will be stored in grey water tank.  This has worked well in the past.  I will use this for hunting/fishing trips to BOL.  This bus will be a 3 year project to complete, but I plan to use it this coming spring for April fishing trip.  2 weeks in the woods.  It's a 3 year project to complete.  I have a trailer that will hold my second vehicle, pulls with no problem. 

I love these for BOV because of the amount of gear I can carry.  They are rugged as hell and basically bullet proof if you buy the right vehicle.  Much more durable and better made than RV's.  Lots of work.  I'd love to hear from anyone else with experience or ideas. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/ws1.jpg)
Exterior when I bought it.  Obviously a paint job is required to blend into my Maine woods home and BOL's.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/intstripped.jpg)
Interior after is was gutted this fall.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/floor2.jpg)
Floor and wall insulation and sub surface almost installed.  Last Month or so.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/2.jpg)
Begun with back bunk and side bunks/storage.  One of the mid furnaces is in view.  Not enough to heat, but works well in spring-fall. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/3.jpg)
Looking Forward.

I have gotten more done in the past couple weeks.  Batteries and most wiring is in.  Wood stove is in, so I can work on interior during the cold Maine winter.  The galley and counter areas are now in.  I'll try and take some more recent pics if there is any interest.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: joeinwv on December 13, 2010, 05:03:58 PM
definitely keep pics coming - interesting project
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: daved on December 13, 2010, 05:40:33 PM
I'll try and take some more recent pics if there is any interest.
I'm interested as well. This looks fantastic. :popcorn:
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: reefmarker on December 13, 2010, 08:37:35 PM
Cool!  What are the overhead things in the second picture left and right?  Air conditioners?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on December 13, 2010, 08:41:19 PM
Great job so far. Keep the pics coming.

 :popcorn:
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on December 14, 2010, 06:28:23 AM
Those are indeed ac compressors and ducting that went around the bus.  There were also 2 matching compressors hidden under the sides of the bus along the outside.  I have removed all of this to gain headroom for cabinets andstorage bins will be contructed for the outside.  propane tanks have taken over 1/2 of one of the outside areas.  In Maine there is very little need for AC, and I may eventually put a roof system on... not sure.  I sold the compressors along with all the interior seats.

The wheel chair lift that you see was removed and donated to a local person who installed it into an elderly mans home to assist getting him into his house.

Thanks for the interest.

P.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on December 14, 2010, 06:58:20 AM
That is a great project.  I can't wait to see it progress.  Definitely keep the pictures coming.

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TANK on December 14, 2010, 07:32:39 AM
I have got to know about the cost, the bus and finished cost, that is something I might be interested in doing.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Wimary on December 14, 2010, 08:22:20 AM
Love this kind of stuff, keep the pics coming.  I have been thinking about a rain water catch system for a RV, do you have any plans for this? Just curious.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on December 14, 2010, 10:03:15 AM
Cost....  Buses are relatively cheap.  I picked this one up off ebay. $3K.   It has a big 5.9 turbo deisel (Cummings) with an Allison auto trans.  Both pretty much bulletproof.  It has 96,000 on it, a drop in the bucket hopefully.  I drove it to Maine.  I like Bluebirds, rear engine (much quieter on the road), MUST be deisel.  Keep an eye out for rotted floorboards.  It's not a huge deal, but it is a pain.  Living in Maine, I rip everything out to the metal and start from scratch with a vapor barrier, thicjk insulation board, then the subflooring. 

There are some hurdles in terms of weight and CDL needs.  The bus is 30,000lbs. with air brakes.  In Maine, I needed to throw a mattress and a portable toilet in the back to get it reassigned as a motorhome.  Once I got new plates and registered as a motorhome, no CDL is needed.  I did recieve a transportation temp. permit to get it home without a CDL. 

Insurance is through GMC, cheap... about $400/year. 

I plan to drop 6-7K into it.  I want to keep it to around 10K total.  It is doable if you get creative, hell you can do it for alot less if you get really creative.  My biggest overlying concern is weight.  I take that into account with each and every step.

Rain collection....  I have thought about using a temporary tarp system to collect the water.  I will have a 50gal storage tank for potable h20, 50gal. another tank for unfiltered h2o, another 50gal for grey water.  I saw a guy who stored rain water in 2 big sealed P8" VC tubes that were mounted on each side at the top of the bus.  He then used gravity feed to bring the water down inside the bus.  Not sure if I'll do that, I may just feed the rainwater into the unfiltered water storage tank.  Something else to think about. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on December 14, 2010, 10:45:02 AM
WOW, I am amazed, I had no idea it was really that affordable.   Now that is with coach or commercial buses right?

What about old school buses?  Have you done a build with one of those?

Great info.  Thanks.

Let me give you your first +1 for a great project and great information.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on December 14, 2010, 11:49:07 AM
neat project! i'm very curious how it goes.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on December 14, 2010, 12:31:50 PM
Thanks for the +1 Doc.  Appreciate it.  I wasn't sure how this "project" was gonig to be accepted.  Glad to hear that we have some vision here.  I get a lot of funny looks here where I work.  I tell them it's like the movie "Field of Dreams"... either you see the baseball players or you don't.  You all obviously see them.

School buses are about the same.  The are cheaper, and in many cases in better shape because of gov. restrictions.  There are many sites online that deal with bus conversions.  The big thing with school buses is the paint and lights... you have to remove them by law to eleviate any confusion. 

Here's a couple cool links.  I think Jack mentioned the "Schoolie" site one time.

http://www.vonslatt.com/bus-main.shtml (http://www.vonslatt.com/bus-main.shtml)  (This is a VERY good site.  teh one that got me thinking)

http://www.skoolie.net/ (http://www.skoolie.net/)  (The one Jack mentioned)

Have fun.  Keep the questions coming.  It's nice to know that there are other's as crazy as I.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on December 14, 2010, 12:43:33 PM
I've wanted to build out my own bus for a long long time but always figured it would be WAY too expensive (So expensive that I never bothered to look for a bus, DUH).  It may actually be a viable option for next year.  I know I'll never be able to afford a fancy motor home and a van just isn't big enough for a family of 5.  My wife's father had a school bus up until we got married (I was hoping to get it in trade with his daughter LOL)  It still had 3 rows of seats up front (12 passengers) and then 2 bunk beds and a master bed in the back and a toilet/sink/cabnets etc.  He sold it to a cousin of his to make room for a pontoon boat.  :'(

Only problem I have is parking, but I have a spot close by that a friend may let me use, if thats the case, I'm golden ;D.   Just got to get my own daily driver in Feb and then I can start looking at (and convincing the wife  ;) ) to let me do the bus thing.

You have given this man renewed hope.  Thanks
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Amator on December 14, 2010, 01:06:27 PM
Very cool thread.  I've also spent time over the past few years at Jake Von Slatt's site and at Skoolie.  I want to do this in about five years once I'm living at the (future) BOL.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on December 14, 2010, 01:12:03 PM
It is alot of fun... frustrating at times, but fun.  This bus will sleep 2 in back, 2 mid bunks and I use a standard futon to fold out for 2 more int he front.  It's doubtful I'll ever sleep 6, but if I needed to I could.  I really like these because of the durability and storage it allows me.  It's amazing how much I can bring comfortably onboard and stow away. 

My last bus, a bit smaller was self sufficient in terms of power, water and heat (woodstove).  I took a 3 week fishing trip, totally off grid.  Watched TV & DVD's all the time, ran my radios and lighting.  Obviously I couldn't be a power hog, but I was living large in the Maine woods for sure.  I ran into others who were camping nearby and they were blown away by the set-up.  Like I said, I don't deal with a bathroom, it's a major hassle to install and mantain... and it's way too easy to set up a privy... and I'm blessed with a girlfriend that has no problem with that, a rarity for sure.  A shower is easy and a must for long trips.

Also as far as parking, you'ld be shocked at how little room I have at my house and was able to park this monstocity neatly in the back.  I'll try and take some more pics this weekend and post.  The turning radius on a flatnose type bus is outragious, better than most full size pick-ups.

Have fun & Take Care.

P. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Diver55 on December 27, 2010, 01:01:56 AM
I really like the idea of a bus not only as a BOV but just as a general camper. In my opinion, most factory built campers just don't live up to the mechanical demands but as you said, a cummins and an allison.......pretty hard to beat. I have a suggestion on the shower, you could make an alternate exterior one that sort of just swung out from the side. In the middle of no where you could just rig up a tarp or something and presto now you would have to bother filling the waste water tank if you don't need to and it's just plain cool to shower and be necked outside haha. great job love the project.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: teton traveler on December 27, 2010, 09:08:14 AM
Great job!. I have a professor who did this with a school bus, but I don't think that it is quite to your level. Keep the picts comming!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Dan on December 27, 2010, 05:13:34 PM
I always like build threads like this. I find it interesting to see how others re task things, there is an art to it.

The wheel chair lift that you see was removed and donated to a local person who installed it into an elderly mans home to assist getting him into his house.

I'd give you a pat on the back if I could for that.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on December 28, 2010, 10:27:49 AM
Cool! I can't wait to see the progression on this project.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 02, 2011, 02:41:32 PM
Absolutely on the exterior shower!  Rough in the winter up here in the north woods, but viable 8-9 months out of the year. 

The quality of these types of buses is excellent, both mechanically and structurally.  No new pics, I'll try and get a few this week.  I did just install the small woodstove, had my first fire while I was doing soem other work.  The small stove held the interior at 70 degrees while it was 23 outside. The fire was at about 70 percent and only burned for about an hour before it got to temperature.  I think this little stove will do the trick in most situations.  This week some woodwork and more framing.

 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TwoBluesMama on January 02, 2011, 05:17:41 PM
"I want the Magic Bus, I want the Magic Bus, I want the Magic Bus...

I said, now I've got my Magic Bus (Too much, the Magic Bus)
I drive my baby every way (Too much, the Magic Bus)
Each time I go a different way (Too much, the Magic Bus)
I want it, i want it, I want it, I want it ...

Every day you'll see the dust (Too much, the Magic Bus)
As I drive my baby in my Magic Bus (Too much, the Magic Bus)"
Lyrics by The Who

My DH is gonna be so jealous when he sees your bus.  He wanted to get a bus back in the 70's and just tootle around and live out of it - me, I thought not. Now I see the error of my ways. Nice job!
+1 from Mama.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: climberaxe on January 05, 2011, 10:38:15 AM
That is a cool idea!!!!  While not on my short term list of 'to-do' items, it's always been on my mind.  I look forward to your future pictures.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Sarey on January 05, 2011, 01:53:21 PM
See now that's the idea... I have a bus out in the back being used for storage all the seats are out except for two and the last time we actually drove it was to take my brother in law out to dinner.... Yes, odd but priceless good, clean fun....


I'll be sharing this with the man....

Love it...
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TwoBluesMama on January 05, 2011, 06:45:13 PM
Just showed the DH this thread and he thought it was awesome!  +1 from him! (he's saying he had this idea 40 years ago and I wouldn't do it! Yeah, yeah!)

Keep the photos coming!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 09, 2011, 07:46:53 PM
Here are a few more pics. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/ext1.jpg)
6am.  16 degrees inside and out. Fire started indside.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/stove2.jpg)
Stove roughed in.  Once the floor is laid stove & pipe will get a paint.  Secondary bus heater
element & fan mounted under stove.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/stove1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/galley1.jpg)
Galley Area (very) roughed in. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/furnace1.jpg)
Small furnace roughed in. It's only 19,00btu so it does ok in spring and fall.  Not so much
now that winter has set in.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/stove3.jpg)
This little thing had the inside at about 70, outside at 25 in about an hour and a half with a
small fan on it.  I have a couple of 12v that will help circulate the heat.   
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/wall1.jpg)
Making some progress on the wall. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/ext2.jpg)
I use a standard RV cover with a sleeve for the stove pipe to breathe through.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on January 09, 2011, 08:57:22 PM
Looking good. What happened to the original pics?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on January 09, 2011, 09:05:17 PM
The project looks to be coming along nicely. Great work!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 10, 2011, 05:15:34 AM
Opps!  I'll repost earlier pics tonight of bus project.  Is there anyway to edit tose postings and re0insert pics?  I erased the wrong folder on photobucket. :)  Sorry.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 10, 2011, 06:49:27 AM
I'm getting most of them back.  Thanks agin for the ideas and thoughts.  Please keep 'em coming. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 10, 2011, 07:04:10 AM
Here are a few older ones.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/Int3.jpg)
Pulling Seats...
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/int4.jpg)
Starting on ripping floor & walls.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/floor1.jpg)
New Sub Floor & Insullation.  Foam wallboard and strapping.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/floor3.jpg)
More walls & sub flooring.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Pics/int2.jpg)
And so on... and so on...

Next Up I'm focusing on completing counter/cabinets/sink/cookstove.  I'll send more pics as I go. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Mike123 on January 10, 2011, 07:43:05 AM
Good job enjoyed the post.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Oregun89 on January 12, 2011, 10:55:17 PM
Very cool! +1

I never realized you could pick up a bus like this for so cheap. I'll definitely be following this thread. I might have to invest in a bus of my own in the near future.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TwoBluesMama on January 13, 2011, 08:31:21 AM
My DH spotted a bus for sale near our house the other day. I knew I shouldn't have shown him this thread!  :D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on January 13, 2011, 06:33:40 PM
My DH spotted a bus for sale near our house the other day. I knew I shouldn't have shown him this thread!  :D

Oh no!  :rofl:
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 14, 2011, 08:39:14 AM
There are quite a few things too look for, and think about when buying this type of vehicle for re-purposing into an RV or BOV.  Make sure to investigate the MANY options.  There are lots of websites out there to assist, and of course people to talk too.  I would be more than happy to offer my suggestions and opinions for whatever they might be worth. Here's a few...
- Do your homework.
- Go DEISEL! Better reliability and cheaper to operate with a vehicle this size.
- Tools.  It takes ALL kinds!  If you don't have them, beg borrow or buy.  It all adds to the cost.
- Materials... you may need to alter your design plans based on cheaper, even free materials that are readily available to you.
- Knowledge.  It's not brain surgury, but you (or someone you know) will need basic construction knowledge.  It all depends on your needs.  I build mobile camps, NOT finished, polished looking RV's.  I prefer usability and longevity to style... although I like a rustic look.
- Weight.  When building your vehicle, weight is EVERYTHING!  When adding something, always look at the weight and is there something else that is lighter.  It will save you money at the pump and handling is always a question too!
- Local laws!  Make sure you can do this in your state, some are more difficualt than others. Check CDL DL laws.

I'd be happy to answer more questions as they come up.  Thanks for the interest in the thread.



Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TwoBluesMama on January 14, 2011, 08:45:57 AM
Thanks for the tips SOM ! Appreciate the time you put into taking pictures and updating this thread.  Blessings TBM
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 11, 2011, 07:48:56 AM
Here's a few new pics.  Starting to look a little less like a bus!
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/int2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/int3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/int4.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/int5.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Round%202/int6.jpg)

Next Up.... Completing installation of a new bank of 6 house batteries, 2 inverters and a multibank 3 stage charger.  Solar panels and charge controller will be this spring. 

I'm loving this little stove!  I pick up a pick-up truck bed full of chunks of hardwood from a local cabinet manufacturer for $20.  The wood is in small chunks that are perfect for the stove.  Last night it was down to 4 outside, 72 inside.  Plenty warm for the stain and glue to dry nicely. 

Next decision....  I was planning on an on-demand h2o heater, but I found a slick little wood h2o heater that I'm considering.  I really want to try and lessen my need for propane. Anyone have any experience with these?  NOT the big shelter sized ones that you often see.  I'll try and find the link.
Love to hear any new ideas or opinions. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TwoBluesMama on February 14, 2011, 05:28:21 AM
Wow - very nice!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on February 14, 2011, 08:34:04 AM
I keep finding myself coming back to this thread.  I SOOOOO want to do this some day.   Probably not in the cards this year, but if I play my cards right, might be my spring project  the following year.

Great work, amazing craftsmanship.


Doc
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 14, 2011, 09:02:37 AM
Thanks for the compliments... not sure about the craftsmanship thing.... moulding hides a multitude of errors? 
I got the 6 batteries installed (110lbs each) yesterday, the inverters go in tonight.  I'll put a good load on them over the next few days to make sure I have everything ready for the PV panels in the spring.






Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on February 14, 2011, 10:18:04 AM
The Bug Out Bus is looking great!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: idelphic on February 14, 2011, 11:38:59 AM
I keep finding myself coming back to this thread.  I SOOOOO want to do this some day.   Probably not in the cards this year, but if I play my cards right, might be my spring project  the following year.

Great work, amazing craftsmanship.


Doc
If you need help,.. I'm there... ;D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on February 14, 2011, 11:42:37 AM
Really impressive vision to bring it from relic to attractive and functional. 

I "customized" a 21' travel trailer back in the late 80s, but never got down to the sub-floring and such.  You were very wise in starting there; without good insulation and a solid foundation, you can never pump enough heat into something like this in a northern climate.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on February 14, 2011, 01:20:34 PM
...moulding hides a multitude of errors?...
That is why it was invented.  8)

Seriously, the bus is looking fabulous!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on March 24, 2011, 06:42:56 AM
Making a little progress.  Other priorites popped up.  But I was able to complete the battery bank, chargers, inverter, fuse panels and such.  Also a countertop has been completed with the galley sink installed.  The snow is finally melting so I'm hoping to get to some of the outside work before too long.  Storage units under the bus, exterior cleaning of oxidized paint and removing the rest of the decals.... yada, yada, yada.  Here are some recent pics.  Thanks for the continued ideas and input, it helps keep me motivated.

Battery Banks are up and running.  1st of 4 solar panels goes in next month.  For now the 8 house batteries and 3 starting batteries are charged from the new charger.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/powerrack1.jpg)(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/powerrack2.jpg)

Countertop and sink.  I have some finished moulding to deal with, but it's looking better everyday.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/counter3.jpg)(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/sink1.jpg)(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/galleyarea.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on March 24, 2011, 07:44:15 AM
looking good! keep it going!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on March 24, 2011, 09:27:27 AM
Nice work!

I can't wait to see how the Bug Out Bus tuns out!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Mike123 on March 25, 2011, 08:17:39 AM
looking good!
Mike
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ncjeeper on March 25, 2011, 01:21:37 PM
My wife wont go camping, but if I had that thing I bet she would. Looks nice.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TNVolunteer on March 25, 2011, 04:42:59 PM
Keep it up Statesofmind.  I've really enjoyed watching your project develop.  Nice work!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: tomtom on May 11, 2011, 03:31:24 PM
Thats awesome! Have you looked at http://www.skoolie.net/ (http://www.skoolie.net/)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 12, 2011, 07:24:15 AM
I'll be back at it this next weekend.  Right now I'm focusing on getting the garden set for planting this next week or so.  Thanks for the kind words and encouragement.  I have checked out Skoolie site several times, in fact I have gotten a few ideas from one of the projects listed there.  It's also nice to see that I'm not the only freak willing to take on this type of project. 

I do have to relocated the battery banks.  I want to get them underneath the frame, outside of the living area for safety.  I thought they may work where I put them, but I'm just not comfortable with them inside under the main sleeping area....  big boom, I fall down. 

I'll try and get some updated pics soon.  Thanks again!

P.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TNVolunteer on May 16, 2011, 04:18:33 PM
This project is the straight up shiz-nit.  I love watching it come together
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 06, 2011, 11:16:58 AM
Here are a few more pics of my battery re-location weekend.  I cut into the floor between the front wheels to build my battery compartment.  There was ample room for a bin of 6 batteries.  I still have to have the support beams spot welded to the frame to cut down on any movement during the ride.  I'll have the charger and inverter hooked up tonight after work.   I'll be putting in a hatch to access these components down the road and putting some sheet metal or plastic sheeting to protect the box from any major torrents of water.  The area is already well protected thanks to some big league mud and water flaps already in place.  I love these vehicles because they are so much better built than standard RV's.  This thing is a tank.  :)
 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery1.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery5.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery4.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Battery%20Re-Locate/battery6.jpg)

Next I am cutting into the sides of the bus to build massive storage bins all along each side of the bus.  It's amazing how much room there is for storage in a rear engine bus.  It's obviously much quiter on the road, but with no transmission running down the center, it opens up tons of room for my water storage tanks which I am shooting for this coming fall after the 4 solar panels are mounted on the front of the roof section.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on June 06, 2011, 11:46:37 AM
I am so impressed! Thanks for the update on 'The Bus.'
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: d0j0w0 on June 06, 2011, 07:24:52 PM
COOL!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: thezoo on June 06, 2011, 10:20:49 PM
your bus is the coolest thing ive seen in a while, now im starting to think of doing something similar ( I have a cdl) maybe a truck and 53 foot dry van conversion would be cool
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 07, 2011, 12:12:10 PM
Very cool idea and certainly doable.  Plenty of room and storage... weight not much of an issue either.  Gonna be very hot, although you could put in some windows and ventilation.... could get a little pricey.   Could be tough getting in and out of certain areas.... um, er.... sort of like a bus!  LOL.  Actually the turning radius of this bus is unbelievably tight for a 33 ft. vehicle.   

It would be nice to be able to drop your load at a BOL and (while not the most economical) be able to travel to and from to some extent.  I will be towing a small car hauler / trailer behind this bus with my 2nd vehicle.

How much can you pick up an old dry box trailer for?  Just curious.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: thezoo on June 07, 2011, 12:43:18 PM
good idea, thats the week point with a 53 footer i dont think you could get away with towing a car behind a atrailer being towed as well, unless you could find a wayto stow a car under the trlr,
(it'd have to be a real short car(height not length)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: idelphic on June 07, 2011, 01:51:55 PM
good idea, thats the week point with a 53 footer i dont think you could get away with towing a car behind a atrailer being towed as well, unless you could find a wayto stow a car under the trlr,
(it'd have to be a real short car(height not length)

NASCAR and other Motor Sports don't bother with the towing - they haul it.  The Mechanics Trailer has a lift in it.  There is 'wasted' space above the vehicle, so they raise it.  While your cost is going to skyrocket, it's doable... 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: thezoo on June 07, 2011, 02:20:54 PM
file this under an idea thats cool but I could never afford to do, I just love his bus gets the imagination goin
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Ms green eyes on June 07, 2011, 02:50:29 PM
awesome--keep it up!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 27, 2011, 02:45:55 PM
Update... 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bunk%20Room%206-11/bunk4-1.jpg)
Getting some interior work done over a rainy Maine weekend.  Finished walls in the bunk area (rear of bus) are covered with a nice fabric to help look decent, deaden sound and provide a nice lightweight and changeable look.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bunk%20Room%206-11/bunk1.jpg)
Here you can see a wide shot of the bunk area.  Still more to go.  I have fitted 2 fans in each of the roof portals.  This drastically cools the bus and can run off shore power or the inverter.  I have hung a couple cargo nets over the top bunk.  I'll probably install some shelving under this for more "stuff".  The nets will work for blankets/pillows and sleeping bags.  Anything lightweight.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bunk%20Room%206-11/bunk5.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bunk%20Room%206-11/bunk6.jpg)
The bunks are looking much better now.  Basically ready for the mattress and bedding.  The bottom bunk will be used more often.  The top bunk will double as a workbench as well. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bunk%20Room%206-11/bunk2.jpg)
This gives a decent shot of how the fabric looks.  Basically I have covered each piece of foamboard in fabric, using an adhesive.  Then I simply screw the panel back in place.  This allows me to easily open the walls up to add future wiring, plumbing or whatever.  Plus, it's very easy to change the fabric down the road if it gets torn, dirty of I want a new look.    I'm very happy with how this turned out. 

Next up... exterior work if the weather every turns into summer here. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 27, 2011, 03:05:25 PM
love what you're doing to the place.  You're not only a very wise planner, your carpentry skills really make the place look good, too.

How thick of foam will you be going with for mattresses?

After we had some out of town guests for our wedding this month and had to borrow a trailer for a guest room, the wife has approved poking around to find a used trailer we can rehab.  Your pics are an inspiration to what can be done with the most raw of a start.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on June 27, 2011, 03:12:22 PM
Looks fantastic! +1
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: d0j0w0 on June 27, 2011, 07:19:05 PM
Will the bus have any type of rain collection system?  Or is that a huge challenge for this project?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 28, 2011, 05:19:03 AM
Thanks for the kind words.  I built the bunks and master bed to handle standard size mattresses.  2 singles and a queen.  I figure, if I'm gonna be camping long term... may as well be comfortable.  Bedding stuff will be much easier to deal with if they are all standard sizes. 

As far as rain collection, I have considered it due to the size of the roof.... maybe down the road I'll make some sort of gutter funnel to a holding tank.  But for now I will just continue to use my tarp 'n hose setup, real easy to hitch to the bus. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 28, 2011, 08:31:11 AM
Thanks for the kind words.  I built the bunks and master bed to handle standard size mattresses.  2 singles and a queen.  I figure, if I'm gonna be camping long term... may as well be comfortable.  Bedding stuff will be much easier to deal with if they are all standard sizes. 

As far as rain collection, I have considered it due to the size of the roof.... maybe down the road I'll make some sort of gutter funnel to a holding tank.  But for now I will just continue to use my tarp 'n hose setup, real easy to hitch to the bus.
Good thinking.  Just for the sake of finding sheets that fit, that makes a lot of sense.  I ended up modifying the trailer I had from 1989-1996 to hold a single queen sized futon and it worked well.  It gave me the flexibility to use it as a couch when I had company and also gave me my first piece of furnature when I moved back into a traditional house. ;)

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 28, 2011, 08:35:03 AM
Yeah standard sizes makes it MUCH easier to deal with.  I will also have a queen size futon up front for an occasion guest or fishing/hunting buddy.   
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: loyalty4eva on July 08, 2011, 09:34:56 AM
This is a VERY cool project I love the work keep it up! My wifes dad has a RV and the thing is very nice but doing it this way looks like you save a lot of money if you can do it yourself makes me wanna start a project trailor to pull behind my truck I've had the idea for a while ill post picks if I ever end up buying one.

One question I had is if you used this as a BoV how whould you have enough gas or do you not plan to go further then a bus's tank can hold? Just wondering I know bug out place isnt to far and probebly could peddle bike their in day if I had to but everyones diffrent I guess. With this I guess its kinda nice because were ever you stoped that would be your bug out place :P awsome! Sorry sometimes I just write down what im thinking as I go curse being able to type faster then I can think sometimes.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 08, 2011, 09:40:48 AM
That is a great question, but I keep a 65 gallons tank full, with a second 30 gallon tank being fitted in the fall for nearly 100 gallons... at 12 miles per gallon gives me over 1000 mile range.   My BOL land is only a 1 hr. drive to the mountains.  Thanks for the question and I would suggest anyone to do this type of BOV project.  It doesn't have to be to this scale, but a trailer is a great idea too. 

A bus or similar vehicle is MUCH better built than any RV bought commercially.

P.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 18, 2011, 09:36:02 AM
Some of the more boring stuff getting done over the weekend.  I took apart the dash, which was in BAD shape.  I decided to re-vinyl part of it and re-paint other parts.  Here's a couple shots of the prep work, and then a few of the somewhat finished product.  it's actually VERY easy to do once I learned a few tricks about the corners and such. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/dashprep1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/dashprep2.jpg)

Not 100% finished, but getting close.  I will be constructing a cabinet underneath to hold maps, jacks and roadside emergency stuff.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/dash3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/dash1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/dash2.jpg)

I also took the door apart and reconditioned it.  Repaint and general cleaning.   I love the look and feel of the old school bus door with a working step that goes in and out as the door opens and closes.  Just one of those cool things I want to keep.  Many folks remove the door to put in a more conventional door, I like the original stuff. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/door4.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/door6.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Dash%20n%20Door%207-11/door5.jpg)

I would love some ideas for exterior.  I am not there yet, but I want to start formulating my plans to paint/letter/decal/wrap.... whatever it is I will end up doing.  I am interested in keeping it somewhat discreet and subtle.... well as subtle as a freaking bus in the woods can be!  I want it to blend in when I'm camping or fishing, but not really interested in full cammo.... if you get my drift.  I'd love any ideas!!!!  Thanks again!!!!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on July 18, 2011, 09:43:13 AM
Great job on that dash!

Just to get the ball rolling on exterior suggestions. Maybe just a solid medium to dark blue or forest green?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on July 18, 2011, 09:59:13 AM
I'd be partial to a light tan on the roof that's likely to match the color of the dirt roads in your area, plus be reflective to keep the temperature inside reasonable during the summer.  On the sides, a green, somewhere between forest and sage, whatever best fits in with your local landscapes.

You're not going to hide a big thing like that, but you can keep if from standing out like a school bus.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on July 18, 2011, 11:04:29 AM
Amazing work,  The door looks NEW and the dash is great.   Someday I will be following in your footsteps.

Since you can't know if your going to be forested or desert environment at any given time, its hard to pic a color.  So no help here.  Probably something that would work well at your primary BOL.

Man I love following this project.   Great Job
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 18, 2011, 11:12:43 AM
This vehicle will most likely NOT leave New England and will remain in Northwoods type setting.  I'll be using it for hunting/fishing, general RV use and at my BOL in North/Central Maine.  I am leaning towards the greens, dark browns, blacks.... I just want to come up with something unique.  Thanks for the ideas and comments. 

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on July 18, 2011, 11:17:47 AM
You could always paint a phoenix <<<<<  on the top  ;D ;D  That would be unique.  LOL
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Medicineball on July 18, 2011, 11:44:35 AM
Man, that bus looks awesome! Good job!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Dan on July 18, 2011, 12:02:49 PM
If you want unique and have some artistic ability you could paint it as one big mural. Pick any subject but make it something that will allow you to stick with earth tones. If you like hunting and fishing, maybe you could use that as your inspiration. Seen on the street it's going to look like you are really into the subject you have chosen, out in the woods at any distance the multiple colors, heavy use of earth tones and random shapes will act as camouflage without looking like you did it intentionally.

I wouldn't call this unique but it is cheap and easy. Paint it a light gray to reflect heat and blend in when in traffic. It would also blend in a bit on gravel roads or if you make camp at a quarry. Get green and tan camo netting to put over it if you camp in terrain where it needs a little help. Throw in a couple poles to hold the net up and you get some shade without the bright colors and hard lines of an awning. Be the gray bus/man when on the road and when it comes time to set up camp become a chameleon, a really really big  chameleon. ;D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on July 18, 2011, 12:06:21 PM
I know it would cost a fortune and would be far from low profile, but how about a black and green marbled paint job with something like this:

(http://www.alsacorp.com/products/killercans/crz/images/craze%20014L.jpg)

From Alsa Corp (http://www.alsacorp.com/index.htm)

Everytime I see one of their "Crazer" paints, I just drewl.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 18, 2011, 12:12:25 PM
Nice ideas.  Dan's idea is VERY close to my current state of mind.  My daughter is an accomplished artist and could certainly help me pull something like this off.  I have had a few other suggestions....
1) Tie Dye pattern... but us cammo colors.
2) Very busy pattern using Street Graffiti, but only using cammo colors only. 
3) Landscape painting  of the exact spot it is parked on pad at BOL... hence nearly invisible.   LOL.  I kind of liked this, my location is densely wooded.

Thanks again for the ideas.  Keep 'em coming.  Now I gotta get back to work.  I'd much rather be home working on the beast.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Dan on July 18, 2011, 12:54:34 PM
1) Tie Dye pattern... but us cammo colors.
I can see this working out quite well in the woods plus you could make a killing selling brownies out of it at the local saturday market.  ;)

2) Very busy pattern using Street Graffiti, but only using cammo colors only.
I have a hard time picturing this without it looking like camo.

3) Landscape painting  of the exact spot it is parked on pad at BOL... hence nearly invisible.   LOL.  I kind of liked this, my location is densely wooded.
Star Trek cloaking device MK1.0

You get the idea. Earth tones, avoid straight lines, make it look like something other than an attempt to camouflage it when looked at out of context.

I know it would cost a fortune and would be far from low profile, but how about a black and green marbled paint job with something like this:

(http://www.alsacorp.com/products/killercans/crz/images/craze%20014L.jpg)

From Alsa Corp (http://www.alsacorp.com/index.htm)

Everytime I see one of their "Crazer" paints, I just drewl.
I would love to use that on my Jeep!  8)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on July 18, 2011, 02:07:42 PM
I can see this working out quite well in the woods plus you could make a killing selling brownies out of it at the local saturday market.  ;)
LMAO! ;D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: PAGUY on July 18, 2011, 06:19:28 PM
You are doing a great job.  Keep up the good work and keep the pics coming.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on July 21, 2011, 03:57:33 PM
The Bug out Bus is looking great!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Mike123 on August 03, 2011, 07:48:32 AM
Fantastic job it is looking good.
Mike
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: tomtom on August 22, 2011, 03:10:57 PM
Keep up the good work, looks great!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: randelw on December 14, 2011, 09:51:46 PM
 :) This is an awesome project. Keep the pics coming!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Mr. Red Beard (UKtheBUNNY) on December 21, 2011, 06:01:20 PM
Absolutely incredible!!! I'm wanting a bus now.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Exile72 on January 12, 2012, 11:10:51 AM
WOW my school bus never looked like that. GREAT JOB
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: DocRokRx on January 12, 2012, 05:00:32 PM
Cost....  Buses are relatively cheap.  I picked this one up off ebay. $3K.   It has a big 5.9 turbo deisel (Cummings) with an Allison auto trans.  Both pretty much bulletproof.  It has 96,000 on it, a drop in the bucket hopefully. 
Insurance is through GMC, cheap... about $400/year. 
I plan to drop 6-7K into it.  I want to keep it to around 10K total.

I NEED TO DO THIS!!!!!!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 23, 2012, 10:00:31 AM
Finally back to working on the bus.  I spend more time in it during the winter cause of gardens and all the other summer stuff.  So now I'm back at it.  Working on the Shower/Tub room. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower1.jpg)

I want to keep the original heater intact, so I'm building around it.  This will also allow me to keep water piping warm and re-route some of the heater output into the tub and bath area.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower2.jpg)

I'm using some free rubber roofing as a sealant and barrier to force air to where I need it to go.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower3a.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower6.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower8.jpg)

Some finish painting as well.  I found a close match for existing paint to make it cleaner and cheaper.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9b.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9d.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9c.jpg)

It's tough using the bus as my workshop too.  Gets a little messy, and I have to clean it virtually everyday to keep it manageable.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9f.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9g.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9h.jpg)

I am also beginning to put some walls up in the rear office/master cabin area.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/desk1.jpg)

It's coming along.  My plans are to have the interior basically done by May.  Then once the weather warms, I will install full solar kit on the roof.  Batteries are already onboard and operating with a charger. 

After solar, I turn to water tank hook ups, pumps, tubing and all that crap.   Has anyone used the flexible "peel and stick" type solar panels????  I'm considering this for the roof of the bus.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: thezoo on January 23, 2012, 10:17:05 AM
you sir have quite a gift, that will be a bus to compete with even the most luxurius of rv's great job so far, as far as the flexible solar, i have never used any type of solar anything so i really cant weigh in on that but it sounds like one heck of an idea, it even gives me an idea for my mobile home, i dont believe my landlors would be happy if i put traditional solar panels on my roof but since my roof is rounded like a bus roof, maybe i can still have my cake and eat it too,
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: backwoods_engineer on January 23, 2012, 10:59:39 AM
EXCELLENT!  Well done, SoM!  I want to do this someday myself! 

Please keep the pix coming!  You are inspiring us all.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on January 23, 2012, 11:09:44 AM
Unbelievably great stuff!

Keep us up to date. I can't wait for a ride.  ;)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on January 23, 2012, 12:04:52 PM
is he offering rides yet?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 23, 2012, 12:43:06 PM
Rides?  Hows the old saying go?  Gas, Grass or Ass?  LOL.   

Maybe someday I'll drive her to a Survival Podcast event.... ya never know.  Take care all and THANKS for the kind words and encouragement.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: mangyhyena on February 22, 2012, 06:37:36 PM
First off, that bus is awesome.  What a great idea and excellent follow-through.

What kind of gas mileage does it get?  Would a smaller bus, like a short school bus I see once in a while, do signifigany better in that department?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ChrisFox on February 22, 2012, 08:53:37 PM
I bow down to you sir. How much weight will all this and how will it affect the drive ability/gas mileage on it?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 23, 2012, 06:22:28 AM
I'm not too concerned about the weight.  I removed so much from the original bus, seats, big AC units, etc.   All  the building materials are basically foam and soft wood.  The biggest weight consideration is the batteries, and that plan has actually changed drastically since my earlier posts.  But this was a commercial vehicle, built to MUCH more tough restrictions than commercial RV's.  It was built to be fully loaded with 30+ people. 

Gas mileage.... not horrible considering.  It was around 12 on the hwy.  But I won't be touring in this vehicle.  it's basically transporting me to and from my land and home.   I'll use it for hunting/camping/fishing trips.  Once I arrive, it won't run until I drive it home.  Most of the trips will be around 60 miles.  Not too bad.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 23, 2012, 06:26:46 AM
Opps.... about the short bus.  Yes they work awesome.  it all depends on your needs.  The very first bus I did was bought in San Diego.  It was a small airport transport bus.  I stripped it and basically used it to move everything from SD to Maine.  Loooong drive.  We had very little money so it wasn't nearly as comfortable as this one will be. But it got us here and I was able to sell it for a few more bucks than I had into it. 

Smaller is definitely better in terms of mileage.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: mangyhyena on February 28, 2012, 05:33:19 PM
This is a stupid question, I'm sure, but is your alternator charging the deep cycle batteries when the engine is running?  If not, can that be done without damaging the deep cycle batteries (charging too quickly) and is it difficult to set it up that way?

Did I mention how Awesomely awesome your project is?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 28, 2012, 06:20:49 PM
Right now the engine batteries (2) are the only ones getting charged from the alternator.  I will probably hook up a three way switch that gives me the option of charging house or engine or house + engine batteries from the alternator.  I don't think that presents any issues with the deep cycle batteries.   Thanks for the kind words, helps to keep me motivated. 

I just installed the new wood stove, tile base and half the flooring in. I'll get some pics up soon. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Goatdog62 on February 28, 2012, 06:36:20 PM
This is a stupid question, I'm sure, but is your alternator charging the deep cycle batteries when the engine is running?  If not, can that be done without damaging the deep cycle batteries (charging too quickly) and is it difficult to set it up that way?

Did I mention how Awesomely awesome your project is?

I use a SurePower isolator to charge the deep cycle in my Project 505. (4Runner)
It charges from the alternator ONLY after the chassis battery is fully charged first.

My motorhome does the same with a generic isolator. Works just fine and an automatic boost from the deep cycles can help start the vehicle should the chassis battery get drained somehow, though the isolator is specifically designed to prevent that.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: WVMan73 on February 29, 2012, 10:55:31 AM
Similar to what Goatdog mentioned, the 1986 motorhome my family owned had a momentary switch on the dash that would allow the engine to be started from the "house" batteries if the "engine" battery was dead. Just hold the button down and turn the key. It's basicly like having a built in, backup jump starter ready to go anytime you needed it. I'm not sure if the altenator charged the "house" batteries on it or not though.

Did I mention how Awesomely awesome your project is?

I second that oppinion! Really awesome project! I'm looking forward to seeing those new pics.  ;)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 29, 2012, 12:26:51 PM
Here's a few pics to catch up on my progress.  I built a small desk area in the rear cabin area.  Nothing special but efficient and useful. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/desk2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/desk1.jpg)

I picked up a small used Jotul 602.  One of the best small stoves made in many circles.  I had to cut into the sub-floor, remove the insulation board and drop in a prefabbed tile hearth pad.  I will be drilling 4 bolts through the frame under the floor to anchor it. 

The stove itself will never be in place when I am on the road.  I will stow it under the desk pictured above.  I have some strong brackets that will mount to the frame under floor as well.  The stove weighs 160lbs.  I picked up some of those little pads that assist in moving heavy furniture across a hardwood floor to move it back and forth.  It's very easy to move.  I can have it set up and have a fire going in under 20 minutes.

I'm using some synthetic flooring that snaps together and is decent looking... and it was a super cheap, closeout sale item.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/jotul1.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/jotul2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/jotul3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/jotul4.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/jotul5.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/floor1.jpg[/img][img]http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/floor2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/floor3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Bus%20Blog%20Pics/floor4.jpg)

I will have some radiant shields for the wall and back part of the stove that allow less than 21" of clearance to that obviously flammable paneling.  I will paint it and mount the shields directly to the wall.  It should look nice and provide ample fire protection. 

Next up... I picked up an old sewing machine and am going to try and make some decent curtains for bunks, master bunk area and front windows.  Fingers crossed.  It looks like I'm on track to have the interior complete by June 1.  Of course I'm certain I'll change things as I go, but at least it's ready to use.  I am putting the solar panels up this spring and planning a maiden camping trip in July. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: slingblade on February 29, 2012, 02:05:41 PM
Are you for hire?  :)
I'm only partially joking. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Roundabouts on February 29, 2012, 02:32:08 PM
This looks great.  You can tell you really pay attention to detail.  Can't wait to see the finish product.  Have you come up with a exterior paint plant yet.  I didn't see that posted or maybe I just missed it.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on February 29, 2012, 02:37:07 PM
I'm still contemplating the exterior. Id love to hear any suggestions  Whatever I decide it will one of the last details.  I'm guessing late this summer or next spring. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: DrJohn on February 29, 2012, 05:50:00 PM
This is looking very kewl!  Are vehicle wraps an option?  I have no Idea what they cost, but are a very quick way to get the outside done.  As to what the wrap would be, how about just trees! Not really camouflage, but would blend in for sure!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: PAGUY on March 11, 2012, 08:17:19 PM
Looking good.  Glad to see that you have made more progress.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on March 11, 2012, 08:43:17 PM
I looked into "wraps" but they ranged from 5-8k.  To rich for my blood.  I'd rather spend that money on something more practical. I just picked up a used air compressor and sprayer for free, so I may give it a shot this fall.  I'm painting the roof next, before I install solar panels.   
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ChrisFox on March 12, 2012, 09:39:30 AM
Did the $50 paint job on the Jeep a few years ago. Damn suprised how good it turned out with how cheap it was.

http://www.rickwrench.com/50dollarpaint.html (http://www.rickwrench.com/50dollarpaint.html)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on March 28, 2012, 02:29:18 PM
Great Ideas in today's show from Wade!  Give it a listen if you missed it!  New Pics coming soon!!!!!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: backwoods_engineer on March 29, 2012, 11:38:12 AM
Great Ideas in today's show from Wade!  Give it a listen if you missed it!  New Pics coming soon!!!!!

Yeah, I enjoyed that show, too.

Looking forward to more pics of the Bug-Out Bus.  You are an inspiration.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: tomtom on April 02, 2012, 08:00:33 PM
Looks awesome
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 07, 2012, 12:52:07 PM
Lots of new stuff to report and a few pics as well.  First up... the flooring.  I started in the rear and worked my way forward in sections so that I can easily remove sections to get to sub-floor and front battery bank. (oops.... I just noticed I already posted a couple of these pics).
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/floor1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/floor2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/floor3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/floor4.jpg)
I finally got a couple pics of the travelling home for the wood stove.  Obviously I didn't want a 250 pound projectile in case of accident.  It takes me about 10 minutes to set the stove up OR take it down to travel.  It is anchored with 2 4000lb. brackets mounted to the frame and sidewall.  The straps are 3500lb rated.  This should be fine, barring any catastrophic accident... which would probably turn me into road paste anyways.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/storedstove2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/storedstove1.jpg)


New Radiator!
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/radiator.jpg)


New bedding in the master bunk.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/masterbunk.jpg)
Also worked on battery chargers for when I am plugged into shore power.  1 charger (single bank) handles the front battery bank under the floor (6 batteries), the 2nd charger (dual bank) handles the engine batteries and the 2nd  bank of house batteries (4).
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/singlebankcharger.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/5-1-12/dualbankcharger.jpg)
Next up.... I have my first 2 PV panels in hand.  I need to paint the roof with a rubberized aluminum paint before I mount them up top.  I will be getting 2 more next month.  These should keep the batteries  in good shape when I'm out in the woods.  I also have in hand many water system hardware items to install.  I have pumps, storage and compression tanks, on-demand hot water heater and a water pump that will run off the engine to fill tanks from a spring located on my NEW PROPERTY!!! 
I just purchased 8 acres in Northern Maine, about 1.5 hours from my home.  Beautiful country and extremely private.  Tons of game roaming all over the place.  best part, it abuts several thousand acres of paper company land open to my use.
So far I have about 10K into this bus, including purchase price.  I have another year or so to go, but NOT a ton more expense.  The way I look at it, about the same cost as refinishing a classic muscle car.... BUT MUCH MORE practical.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: slingblade on May 07, 2012, 01:12:26 PM
BIG +1!!!  Good work!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 07, 2012, 01:31:16 PM
Thanks buddy.  Appreciate it!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: cmxterra on May 07, 2012, 01:36:12 PM
awesome work. Gives me ideas on how to do a few things on my M109
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on May 07, 2012, 03:26:02 PM
This is definitely one of the more well documented projects of its kind on the forum.  You've incorporated a lot of great ideas.  I can't believe that you've kept things under $20k on this project.  Seriously impressive work.

Please keep the pictures coming.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ChrisFox on May 07, 2012, 04:35:40 PM
To lazy to look but is this mostly a mobile setup for full time travel?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 07, 2012, 06:54:05 PM
I will use this as a mobile hunting/fishing camp.  I will not be making long hauls with it.  It's for use on my BOL and around New England.  Never at a campground type setting.  Off grid usually. 

I've been able to use some contacts for some of the more expensive parts, batteries, electronics, some materials.  I'm hopeful to keep it under 15k.  But I'm sure if I keep this one I would add more down the road.  Definitely no more than 20k total.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: slingblade on May 08, 2012, 01:44:50 PM
Just a question here.  Are you concerned about getting stuck?  Fishing/hunting/around BOL sounds a lot like a list of good places to sink up to the axles.  I ask to ease my own fears of getting my 40,000 lb monster stuck.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 08, 2012, 08:04:11 PM
Definitely a concern.  Most of my hunting is in the late fall, and the ground here in Maine is pretty firm... Frozen most of the time.  But my land is only 1/2 mile off paved road, and the road itself is well maintained and solid. 
It's definitely not a vehicle to go blazing trails on.  But so many of the back roads here are lumber company roads that are built to handle larger transport vehicles so for me it works.  When in doubt I'll error on the side of caution and take the ATV or car fishing or to my stands.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on May 09, 2012, 06:56:40 AM
Are you going to add a car tow to the back to pull a car?   

That thing is looking great,  Can't wait to see the finished product.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: SheepdogSurvival on May 09, 2012, 01:41:57 PM
WOW!! What you have done is truly amazing! I love the pictures, I when your finished you should throw up a kinda before and after general over view of your work so I can blow send it to my wife and family and blow their minds.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 11, 2012, 12:25:20 PM
Hey All!
Lots of new news on the BOB.  I have been making several trips by car up to my new BOL in Northern Maine, about 90 minutes from my home.  Awesome spot, 7.5 acres with 1600ft abutting 15,000 acres of timberland. Wooded, stream, hillside with several level areas, water well already on-site, a freaking crap-load of wildlife and very remote. I needed to have a pad put in for the bus to reside.

Well, it's in and I took the bus on it's maiden voyage and spent a long weekend.  I had to get a few CRITICAL things done first, number ONE.... window screening on all windows.  Very key here in the North-woods.  The black flies will absolutely carry you away. With that done, we ventured off.

Here's a few cabin pics to catch you up.  There is still a TON to go.  I'd say I'm 50-60% done.  Just for inquiring minds... I'm just under 12K at this point, including original purchase price with about 3K more to go.  I'm running a bit higher than I wanted, but it's gonna be worth it.  That figure  also includes solar panels and all related hardware/wiring, water supply hardware (pumps/compression tanks/line/etc.) that is already paid for but not installed.  I'm hoping for good weather this week to paint the roof with rubberized aluminum paint, then the panels (4) go in. As you can see, wood stove is not needed, giving us more room to relax. It's now stowed away in back.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/frontroom2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/int1.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/frontroom1.jpg)

Rear bunk area...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/bunkroom3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/bunkroom1.jpg)

Desk area...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/deskarea1.jpg)

Master/Desk inverter.  It's a small one to handle smaller loads like my computer and such.  I have a 2600 watt inverter up front to handle the other loads.  I also have another small inverter under the driver seat.  Oh yea... one more small one in the engine compartment to help if I need light, tools or whatever in there.  I also have a small 3500 watt generator on-board but NOT installed in it's final resting spot.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/mastercabininverter.jpg)

OK... now onto the pad I had excavated on the property.  I had all the soil taken from a gravel laden area about 150 yards from this spot on my property.  So all it cost me was 20 yards of gravel I gave to the operator to haul off and use on another job.  I had already cleared a small area that had several old stone walls and foundations from the old homestead.  I decided to use these in the creation of our outdoor sitting and party area.  There is also an old access road that runs down the middle of the property, very helpful and solid enough to drive the bus down if I ever get the nerve.

From the gravel road looking into pad area.  You can sort of see down the older road to the left.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/fromroad1.jpg)

From the rear... that's one of our pups.  A female boxer. You can see down the old access road better here. There is a couple old apple trees just out of sight, berries everywhere and a ridiculous amount of moose and deer sign everywhere. Lots of turkey too. Havent seen any yet, but I hear them everywhere.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/buspad1.jpg)

Other angles of the pad...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/buspad2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/buspad3.jpg)

Kicking back in the common area... the other pup is my lab/English bulldog mix. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/pupshanging.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/firepitarea1.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/lil1.jpg)

Our first meal on the property... kabobs.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/firstmeal1.jpg)

And the final installment for now... so we're walking around the property and come across and old bridge and pond area that the stream fills into below a nice trout pool.  Just as I'm talking to my girlfriend about foraging in Maine.  I say "that this time of year, mother nature delivers almost anything you may need". 

I glance down and wedged in the corner of a run-off area, under a couple feet of water is this 9/10ths full half gallon bottle of Jack D!    I shit you not.  We laughed so hard.  We spent the rest of the day foraging for the elusive "ice" tree and "mixer" bush!  I'm not a big drinker, but we'll take a haul off it every once and awhile and laugh again.  I'm guessing it was a last seasons fisherman's loss from up stream... and our gain.  Foraging in Maine... simply the best!  Later all.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-12/forage1.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Vulcan on June 11, 2012, 01:01:27 PM
Looking great! And that's too funny about that bottle of Jack!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 11, 2012, 01:36:14 PM
Yeah... mother nature's a crazy funny one. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 11, 2012, 03:08:07 PM
I continue to be impressed by the progress you've made with the bus, but the land is sounding equally nice.  Are you planning any permaculture up there? 



...I wonder if there's a permajack bush...
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on June 11, 2012, 03:22:31 PM
The bus looks great!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on June 11, 2012, 05:22:20 PM
I am so totally impressed. An amazing vehicle for so little money.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 11, 2012, 07:21:42 PM
I will be doing some gardening up there.  Permaculture will be a part for sure.  I have already thrown a few grape vines, blueberry bushes, a single northern peach tree, northern pear tree as well.  The land already has a few things I've noticed. Apple trees, elder berry bushes, rasberry & blackberries everywhere.  Wild strawberries as well.  We'll see how much I can do with it.  Maybe I should start another thread For that adventure.

I would also like to put in a small pond.  The water table is only 20-30 feet deep so I may be able to catch a spring. I'd love to stock some trout but we'll have to wait and see.  This economy is making me more and more nervous.  The way I look at it, the more I can do towards the bus and land, the better I will be. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 11, 2012, 08:49:18 PM
Definitely sounds like a solid start.  I'm definitely impressed.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Vulcan on June 11, 2012, 08:56:40 PM
Would be awesome if you made another thread just for your land.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 20, 2012, 07:04:11 AM
Hey All!!!!

4 days of beautiful weather meant a lot going on with the Bus/RV.  Couple of things before we I get to the details and more pics.  The cost of this project is greatly affected by the use of found/acquired materials for little to no cost.  Such as fabric at a closeout price, or insulation board that was being thrown out in a dumpster.  I have re-purposed a TON of electronics and other stuff from the house.  Batteries were received at NO COST because they were being replaced, even though they were tested at 97%.  I guess what I'm saying is that the cost of this or any project being considered is greatly affected by your individual taste, opportunities that present themselves, etc.  Also, I do not include the cost of tools in my estimates. 

OK... on to the roof and the installation of 2 solar panels, with 2 more coming soon. First I had to wash and wet sand the entire roof...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/roof-wash1.jpg)

Then I masked off the lines along the edge of the roof...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/roof-taped1.jpg)

Once this was completed, I painted the roof with a special rubberized aluminum roof coating.  Messy stuff.  Lots of texture so I had to make sure to use brush strokes that channeled water off the roof.  You can see it in the close-ups...

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/roof-painted-closeup.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/roof-painted-closeup2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/roof-painted1.jpg)

Now onto the installation of the panels.  I was going to buy aluminum angle strips, but the cost was way too high.  So in an effort to cut costs, I used pressure treated 2x2's that I already had.  These will last a long time before I need to replace.  I also made sure to seal all holes with rubber sheeting to prevent water seeping in.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/panels-installed2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/panel-wiring1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/panels-installed1.jpg)

With the panels installed, hooked up and operating as expected, it was time to move on to the next task.  I took the 36" flat panel LCD set out of the extra room and installed it in the bus.  I also installed a single inverter to handle the TV and the DVD player.  In addition to DVD, I installed a rooftop mount for an antenna.  This allows me to pick up all local digital signals and watch in full HD.  It all went well and is operating as I hoped.  The antenna is only hooked up when we are stationary at camp.  The hole that was cut for the inverter will be covered by a hinged picture frame.  Another matching cut will be made on the opposite side of the TV for storage.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/tv-wiring1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/tv-mount-wiring1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/tv-installed.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/tv-inverter-installed1.jpg)

Next up... the fridge.  I bought this model chest last year.  I didn't want to use a regular fridge/freezer that opens in the front.  That loses all the cool air every time you open it.  I went with this Edgestar model fridge-fast freezer.  It operated on 110v OR 12v.  The minute I disconnect from 110v, it shifts over to 12v.  To make this work I stole the finished table top from the front of the bus.  I used 2/3rds for a finished counter top, the other 3rd went to a table that I'll show in a few minutes.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-preplaced1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-preplacement2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-installed1c.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-installed1b.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-installed1d.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-installed1a.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/fridge-finalbeer.jpg)

Just a couple of other quick projects to show you.  First, I needed a tool room to stow my tools.  These will travel with me.  I mounted some sizable mount hooks and strapping to secure them for the ride.  Similar to how I hooked the wood stove up.  This should hold up to most possible accidents, but again, if I end up in some kind of catastrophic situation, I'll probably already be road paste since I'm at the front of the bus and the first to hit.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/toolroom1.jpg)

I also put in a small table to eat and play some backgammon at.  I used the other chunk of tabletop for this. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/table1.jpg)


Finally, I had to have a celebratory cigar, beer and watch a flick on my newly installed set-up. 

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/6-12-roof-panels-fridge-table/CIGAR1.jpg)

Take care all, thanks again for the encouraging words.  Next up, trailer hitch and under floor storage!  Later.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on June 20, 2012, 08:30:44 AM
great! you've earned the beer and flick and cigar!.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 20, 2012, 08:54:46 AM
I continue to be thoroughly impressed.  Great little fridge/freezer! 

I've had to do the rubberized aluminum paint to maintain a trailer I had.  Yup, the stuff is messy!  Looks like you did a great job with it and it should serve you well for years to come.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on June 20, 2012, 04:58:55 PM
Great job! I stand in awe.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: markl32 on June 20, 2012, 05:15:50 PM

You are my hero!

I hope to do this someday. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on June 29, 2012, 07:26:20 AM
Thanks for the encouragement, it really does help keep me motivated.  This weekend I am building a simple futon frame for the front couch/bed area.  In addition, I will be installing a new trailer hitch to pull a small trailer I have.  I use it for carrying gas, lawn tools etc., stuff I don't want inside while on the road.  The hitch will also pull my small car once I find  an auto dolly at an acceptable price.  I'll post some pics early next week.

Also, on a side note, I will be taping an an interview with Jack in August.  I'm excited to talk about the project and hopefully generate some ideas for others in our TSP  community.

Later All!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on June 29, 2012, 09:19:10 AM


Also, on a side note, I will be taping an an interview with Jack in August.  I'm excited to talk about the project and hopefully generate some ideas for others in our TSP  community.

Now I'm looking forward to that!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on June 29, 2012, 09:21:20 AM
woohoo! an interview! congrats!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: gilevi on June 29, 2012, 11:27:13 AM
very impressive
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on July 06, 2012, 09:27:27 AM
I look forward to listening to the interview.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 09, 2012, 08:39:27 AM
I am getting ready to take the BOBus on it's first extended 7 day trip to my property.  I have taken several long weekend trips and have been pleased with the outcome and comfort.  I take notes while out on these trips to make sure I solve any "issues" that pop up.  So now I am taking care of a few of these items.

First up... I needed a hitch to pull a small trailer to carry gear that I don't want inside, such as gas cans, tools, chainsaw, etc.  I also need to pull my small car so when I go on these longer trips, I can bring a car too.  It makes it MUCH easier to go to town for any supplies, or even just exploring for new fishing holes.

I got a quote from a local trailer dealer... $800 installed. I just about fell over!  I found one online, top brand for $185 and had a local welder put it on for another $120! BIG savings!
BEFORE....
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/hitch1.jpg)
AFTER...
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/hitch3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/hitch2.jpg)

Next up... I needed to make it more comfortable inside in the living room area.  I built my own adjustable frame out of scrap wood, and bought a full size futon.  It pulls out to a bed and is very comfortable to sleep on or just sit and hang out.  I will be putting a cover over it so that I can clean easily after a long trip to the woods.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/couch1.jpg)

Next... I really needed to get the original front stairs ripped out and re-done.  This is the area of the bus that took all the abuse.  Lots of feet, mud, water, snow etc.  The rust you see is NOT the sheet metal sub floor, it's all from the rusted out bolts and frame that holds the rubber mats in place.  over the years they simply rusted away and remained under the mats. I was able to clean them easily with wire brush and power sander.

I also removed the original automatic power step that slides out every time the door is opened.  It's a cool thing, but its also the lowest clearance part of the bus. it kept scrapping on the parts of the dirt road, even on a garage floor as I pulled into getting the RV inspected.  PLUS... it weighed nearly 8-0 pounds with the motor and other attached parts.  GONE!
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps2.jpg)

Once cleaned up, I painted a rust converter/prevent on the steps.  I also covered the holes left when I cut off the support bolts for the auto step with a screen mesh and fiberglass.  The I put on a quick spray coat of truck bed liner as a final precaution. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps4.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps6.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps5.jpg)

Then I carpeted the step sides and kick plates with some HD, rubber backed, outdoor carpet that I found in a thrift store.  GREAT FIND! I have 2 big rolls.  it adds such a nice finished look to the entrance.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps9a.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps9.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps8.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps7.jpg)

Next, I wanted a nice look for the steps.  I went with pine stair treads.  They were $9 bucks each, but well worth it.  I can easily remove them and light sand and re coat with polyurethane anytime to keep them looking great.  I will have some thread carpet pieces on each step as well.  The first step will have a HD mat put on it so I can easily take it out and shake it out. I'm pleased with the way they turned out.  It's a nice first impression as people board the BOBus for the first time.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps9b.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/steps9c.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/jules.jpg)

As I was working , a quick T-Storm raced through... but left a good sign for my RV!  Don't ya think?
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/7-12-steps-hitch-couch/rainbow3.jpg)

Next Up... 3rd solar panel going on this week.  Now I have to start focusing on the exterior.  Still not sure what I'm going to do with it.  Any more ideas?

Take care. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on July 09, 2012, 09:53:20 AM
good job on the stairs!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on July 09, 2012, 10:13:40 AM
1st class work!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: radiomacgyver on July 09, 2012, 10:33:25 AM
Now I have to start focusing on the exterior.  Still not sure what I'm going to do with it.  Any more ideas?
Take care.


Great job with your project. Let me know if your in southern New England I'd love to see it in person.

As for the exterior...how about nothing too fancy and put something like "Marys Mobile Pet Grooming Salon" to keep people from paying too much attention to it?  You could always name it "The Bang Bus" and see who offers to go for a ride.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 09, 2012, 11:16:49 AM
Thanks for the kind words.  I have thought about a possible 'decoy" paint job.  But I'm leaning towards something that would conceal it in the woods where it will be spending most of it's time.  I'm not too worried about blending into an urban setting.  I live in a relatively small town now and it's funny how I NEVER get any second looks the way it looks now.  I LOVE that.  And I assume with a nice paint job it might get more attention. So I will have to think about that aspect.

I'm more concerned about security in the woods, especially if I leave it on my property while I'm not there.  I need to look for threads that talk about securing an RV, or property while away.  No power when the vehicle is NOT there, so whatever I hook up will need to run off the bus.  My MURS system already runs off 12v so it shouldn't be an issue.  That may scare someone off just hearing that audible "Intruder in Zone One" voice come over the bus speakers.  But I'm looking for more, some kind of an alarm system for sure.  I'll start a new thread if I don't see an existing one.

Anyways, more thought needs to go onto that for sure.  Thanks for the ideas. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on July 09, 2012, 11:44:43 AM
I've always wanted a vehicle painted in the classic Tiger Stripe Camouflage pattern just because I think it looks cool.  ;D

If I were being a bit more realistic and I were actually trying to obscure something as big as a bus, I'd probably go with a flat olive drab or simple camo pattern and try to obtain some camo netting to break up the hard edges.

Regarding the steps, that's some seriously nice work!

You've gone beyond spartan and just making something work to an environment that is probably and quite frankly a good space to be in physically and mentally. Nice Job!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on July 09, 2012, 02:09:28 PM
First: Love this thread, I check it every day. Keep up the excellent work and keep taking those pics! Maybe a youtube vid one day?
Have you considered getting one of those Chinese made grid tie inverters to put your solar panels to use while the bus is just resting at your house?
All that power (400 watts you said?) sitting idle once the batteries are charged kind of sucks. A 600 watt one from eBay is less than $200 shipped and would pay for itself (if it doesn't break first) in less than six years*.
* Fuzzy math and logic ahead --- Assumed: 400 watts of panels, 4 hours of good sun 5 days a week, 45 weeks idle at home a year, 11 cents / kWh after tax, and 12% total system efficiency loss. All semi-arbitrary best guesses - came to 316.8 kWh/yr.

ALL THAT SAID... I'd feel better knowing the panels are doing something neat rather than just sitting there.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 09, 2012, 03:10:13 PM
Great point! It has bothered me a bit to not fully utilize the panels.  I do have all my home rechargeable laptop, ipods, flashlights and whatever on the bus charging off the panels. I do also now find myself spending time enjoying the bus while its in the driveway. Watching a ballgame or prepqring a mealand sitting in it, thus not using my primary house power. I must say that I haven't given a ton of thought to it, but you are indeed correct.  Ya gotta love this forum and community overall.  I'll have to give it some due thought and put the item on my list. Thanks!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on July 11, 2012, 10:55:48 AM
The quality of your workmanship is just amazing.   You sir have some major talents!!!   Those stairs are fabulous.  Great work.

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 01, 2012, 11:39:24 AM
I've been doing a bunch of little stuff, getting ready for next weeks trip.  The first real 8 day excursion into the woods with the B.O.B.

I did take a few pics (sorry the quality is a bit off), of last nights project.  I need a place to carry my 2 fishing kayaks.  This is yet another fabulous thing about this model bus, particularly the rear engine.  It leaves a freaking TON of room underneath.  The underside is broken down into 3 sections, all run the entire length between the front and rear wheels.  The right and left sides, and of course the middle section. 

The middle will be used for water tanks.  I have decided, since I now pull a storage trailer and have a pickup, (Yes I sold my Mazda 3 and bought a 2001 Toyota Tacoma 4x4), that I'm going to use each side for storing a kayak.  I will make storage in the area in front of the front tires.

Anyways, here is the pics of the crude, simple but HIGHLY effective harness I made for about $3 per kayak. 

Here's the kayak sitting on the ground, with a simple loop around the front and back.  Each end comes out of a small hole I drilled for the rope to come out. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/1.jpg)

Here you can see the end of the front loop/rope coming out the side.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/2.jpg)

As you can see, I can simply pull on the loops to raise the kayak.  The ropes use a eye bolt mounted to the frame to support the kayak and make it easy to lift.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/4.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/5.jpg)

Once I pull each rope out, I simply slip an S link and this secures the ropes.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/6.jpg)

Once the ropes are fastened, you can't even see the boat tucked up under the sides.  Safe, dry and secure.  I put all the paddles and life vests inside each kayak.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/7.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/kayak%20harness8-12/8.jpg)

I've got plenty of work to do on BOTH the land and bus while I'm up in the woods.  In between the trout fishing of course.  I'll have an update when I get back.  Take Care.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on August 01, 2012, 11:51:36 AM
That is slick!   
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: slingblade on August 01, 2012, 12:04:13 PM
+1
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on August 01, 2012, 12:55:06 PM
That is way too cool. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: DrJohn on August 01, 2012, 01:06:09 PM
(http://webpages.charter.net/sticky/thumbs.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Vulcan on August 01, 2012, 04:45:51 PM
(http://webpages.charter.net/sticky/thumbs.jpg)

+1
Just started laughing uncontrolably!

Awesome idea with the kayaks too!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on August 01, 2012, 05:03:19 PM
looks good!
but....
 you might want to use some type of closed loop device to hold the ends together. maybe a carbiner or something similiar
and having a plastic on a thin rope like that might start to indent the kayak where it rests on the rope.  you might want to put some of those foam noodles on it to stop any damage...
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Freebirde on August 01, 2012, 05:12:04 PM
This site will get me in trouble with a bunch of spouses and if mods have any problem with this link please delete.

http://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?fa=Main.CatSearch&mycat=94H

To bid you have to register, return a mailed form, and agree to the rules, the main one is if you win a bid on something and don't pay for it and pick it up you are banned from ever bidding again.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on August 01, 2012, 05:39:12 PM
That kayak storage trick is sweet!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 02, 2012, 04:33:06 AM
ARCHER... GREAT ideas. I need to get better quality cord anyways, but augmenting with a clip will be a nice safety, and the noodle idea... That's using your noodle!  I was thinking about creating a sort of a cradle with an old piece of carpet, but the foam pool noodle is MUCH simpler.  I also need to find 4 small metal grommet/flanges to smooth out the holes that go through the sides to keep the rope from getting chewed up over time. I have filed them down, but I think I'll need more.
Tonight I will be making some crude awnings for both sides. I can't bring myself to spend the kind of money they get for the nice crank out awnings... I'll go with camp tarps and clips.
Thanks again for the suggestions.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 02, 2012, 04:35:32 AM
This site will get me in trouble with a bunch of spouses and if mods have any problem with this link please delete.

http://www.govdeals.com/index.cfm?fa=Main.CatSearch&mycat=94H

To bid you have to register, return a mailed form, and agree to the rules, the main one is if you win a bid on something and don't pay for it and pick it up you are banned from ever bidding again.

There ARE some great deals on this site! Have fun.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Freebirde on August 02, 2012, 05:58:12 AM
When you install your water tanks a couple of ideas.    Install drain valves, especially on the non potable water, in case you need to clean them out or lighten the load.   Also on the non potable water tank you will need an overflow if you hook it up to a water catchment system.    For your grey water, have a gravel fill drain pit as far as possible from your well and spring, you can run a buried pipe from it to your pad or make it where you can drain as you are leaving your BOL.

I have gotten some good stuff from that site, spending more on gas than what I bought.   Once there were three lots of old computers and office chairs.   I made a minimun bid on all three, hoping to get one, I got all three.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on August 02, 2012, 07:05:19 AM
You need powered lift that will lower and extend the storage rack for the kayaks at the push of a button. LOL  THAT would be totally awesome.  ;) 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 14, 2012, 07:35:49 AM
Back from a week in the Northwoods! Everything went very well, really no issues to speak of.  The solar set-up worked flawlessly. I had ample power for my needs. 

I didn't take a bunch of pics, but I did use this trip to learn more about what I need... and don't really need.
Here's just a few pics of the bus on site.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/camp3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/camp1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/camp2.jpg)

A couple things that worked VERY well... my MURS Radio set up is perfect.  The base unit runs off 12v so I was able to hard wire this directly into the on board electrical circuit. I just hung the sensors at key entry points.  It all took about 10 minutes.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/murs1.jpg)

Also... great suggestion from Archer on the padding for the rope on the Kayak harness.  I went with foam pipe wrap, mostly because I had it lying around.  But it really kept the kayaks tucked in tight and protected the hulls from indenting from the rope. Thanks!!!!
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/kayakharness1.jpg)

We did a ton of exploring the awesome surroundings of the BOL.  Lots of lakes, streams and hunting areas... and YES the potatoes are in bloom.  I was able to sneak a few "new" potatoes for one of our cookouts. Tasty stuff!
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/8-12%20trip/taterfield.jpg)

Next Up... I need to get going on the exterior.  I'm also having a front bumper custom welded to give me more storage. 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on August 14, 2012, 08:11:07 AM
That's a whole lotta calories sitting in your backyard. :o
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 17, 2012, 08:14:20 AM
I see Jack posted today's show, the interview we had a couple days ago.  Please feel free to fire away any questions you may have, I'll be happy to try and answer them. 

I've got some rear back-up camera installation going on this weekend.  I'll try and post the pics soon.  Take care.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on August 17, 2012, 08:30:21 AM
BTW, my wife is totally allergic to anything that might sorta look like a RV due to nasty childhood experiences.

I showed her the picks of your bus and she said, "Well, I could go for something like that."

You have no idea what high praise that is.  8)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on August 17, 2012, 08:36:28 AM
I see Jack posted today's show, the interview we had a couple days ago.  Please feel free to fire away any questions you may have, I'll be happy to try and answer them. 

I've got some rear back-up camera installation going on this weekend.  I'll try and post the pics soon.  Take care.
You got interviewed? Excellent!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on August 17, 2012, 08:38:12 AM
You got interviewed? Excellent!
Yeah, that's sorta like reaching the mountain top.  8)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 17, 2012, 08:45:00 AM
BTW, my wife is totally allergic to anything that might sorta look like a RV due to nasty childhood experiences.

I showed her the picks of your bus and she said, "Well, I could go for something like that."

You have no idea what high praise that is.  8)

LOL.... Now BOTH Jack and I put in a couple disclaimers that we are not responsible for any domestic problems relating to one of you pulling in the driveway in a big yellow bus!


Seriously though, thanks for the praise.

edited to correct my spelling error.  :-[  TxD
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: kgb on August 17, 2012, 09:47:38 AM
I would have a concern with the rope coming off the ends of the kayaks. Maybe make like a stretcher that you could put them on then lift it up. Or even tie the two ropes together with other rope making a hammock that it sat in. Would really suck if one came out. You would be the first to know  :)

I am very impressed with it you do good work.

My vote for color is olive drab in flat and get rid of all the shiny stuff on the outside.

Try finding a RV junk yard or something for an awning. Or maybe a whole RV on craigslist just for the awning.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: 1floridacracker on August 17, 2012, 10:24:34 AM
great job! i want one
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 17, 2012, 10:59:42 AM
I would have a concern with the rope coming off the ends of the kayaks. Maybe make like a stretcher that you could put them on then lift it up. Or even tie the two ropes together with other rope making a hammock that it sat in. Would really suck if one came out. You would be the first to know  :)

That was absolutely a concern.  But what the pics don't show is a single line that ties the front and rear loop on each kayak together.  That way the loops can't slide outwards at all.  Great eye and suggestion! TX!

PS.... LOVE the avatar! Jerry lives!  I am considering a large Dead decal for the back of the bus.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Josiah on August 17, 2012, 11:22:50 AM
You have inspired me sir!!!


Here is my bluebird. It needs quite a bit of work! Loved the podcast with Jack.


I did go the classic route:


(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-Fo_asRoDBxg/UC58rCZ4D-I/AAAAAAAAB4Q/Jhn0xeIiJjY/s1448/IMG_0699.JPG)


(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-DLLo3iZs9qc/UC58sOGP8GI/AAAAAAAAB4c/27Eiq_xP2EI/s1448/IMG_0700.JPG)


(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-0-qh0Jc0ZlI/UC58rCLhkeI/AAAAAAAAB4U/OBqVyAMzzpI/s1448/IMG_0701.JPG)


(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-Ck_-agrirxg/UC58vb5BcRI/AAAAAAAAB4o/MUQYymAPsno/s1448/IMG_0702.JPG)


(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-wF20GwcFeTk/UC58wGLeqnI/AAAAAAAAB4s/uP8jaP0FCoM/s1448/IMG_0703.JPG)



Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: eph2 on August 17, 2012, 12:19:57 PM
Love this thread!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on August 17, 2012, 01:29:38 PM
wow, the Bluebird has a lot of potential.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: AngusBangus on August 17, 2012, 02:55:40 PM
but the foam pool noodle is MUCH simpler.
A caution... foam pool noodles break down after about a season/year of use. I can't imagine they will hold up too well exposed to the road/salt/etc. You might try a cheap water hose?

I'm trying hard not to fall victim to this thread. My wife will be pissed if a Bluebird ends up in our driveway.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Nicodemus on August 17, 2012, 03:22:27 PM
Good interview on TSP today, statesofmind!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on August 17, 2012, 07:16:05 PM
Yeah, that's sorta like reaching the mountain top.  8)
It's like being a comedian and having Johnny Carson wave you over to come sit on the couch after your bit on stage. :D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on August 17, 2012, 07:43:53 PM
It's like being a comedian and having Johnny Carson wave you over to come sit on the couch after your bit on stage. :D
Yep, I not clever enough to have put it so well.

Keep up the great work statesofmind.

IndependentJo, be sure to keep us up to date on the Bluebird!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: archer on August 17, 2012, 08:03:49 PM
Yep, I not clever enough to have put it so well.

Keep up the great work statesofmind.

IndependentJo, be sure to keep us up to date on the Bluebird!
and let us know your your USA touring trip starts....
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Eagles mom on August 18, 2012, 06:14:32 AM
Have you considered camouflaging the RV cover rather than the bus itself?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 19, 2012, 08:57:54 AM
I have considered a  camo  cover, and in fact am leaning towards something like that.  I think I'll paint the bus next spring. A very dark green, with the roof remaining silver.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Secret Squirrel on August 19, 2012, 10:42:39 PM
Just listened to the podcast and finally registered on here. I've been listening for just over a year now. That bus is awesome. You did some freaking fantastic work. I'd love to do something like that because the wheelchair accessible RV's that are out there suck the bag bad and being a para, something I could gut and make it the way I wanted it would work great. The wife would be a problem though. I just got rid of a 74 Nova SS that needed a good ground up restore but it was just too big of a project for me to do alone. She was so glad to see that leave on a trailer. If I showed up with a bus, she'd meet me at the bottom of the ramp with a shotgun.

I'm a Mainiac too living in Southern Maine close to Kittery. I moved to Mass from Jay, ME for four years and broke my back and decided to come home. I hate that dump down there and have been down this way for about 10 years now. The hunting actually is better down here than it was up in Jay but I'd still rather back in Jay. The wife prevailed on that one. You have to pick your battles. ::)

Great rig though.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: theBINKYhunter on August 21, 2012, 01:03:02 PM
i think i'll have to move out of suburbia before i can tackle a project like this... i don't think my neighbors would like a big bus parked out front.

great interview. also great ideas and i love seeing how you followed through and did certain things. i will be filing this away for future reference and possible implementation on my end.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 21, 2012, 02:58:20 PM
Appreciate the kind words.  I live in suburbia environment right now.  I have the bus tucked into a VERY small backyard.  My neighbors have been great, in fact I am a big part of their entertainment.  Many of them have stopped by to check up on the progress from time to time.  Particularly, they enjoy watching me back the large vehicle down my VERY narrow single lane driveway, and bend it in back around my house into a very small "landing" pad.  I have about 8 inches on each side to spare.  Before I brought the bus home I measured my driveway and actually used some plastic cups to mark out the dimensions in a large parking lot to see IF it would actually fit.  It was so close that I had to actually try it... and with a couple practice runs, it did.  Now it's VERY easy.

I did cover the RV at first (as you see in some earlier pics), just out of respect for them, but now there is no issue.  I'm getting suggestions from paint schemes to interior modifications.  They really do enjoy it now.  I think if you are respectful of their needs, it can become a positive.  I had a yard sale last year, and over half the people stopping by were neighbors who just wanted a tour of the bus.  And almost everyone who stopped by were amazed that I could fit the large vehicle in such a small area. That's another BIG bonus to the flat-nose buses, the turning radius is freaking amazingly tight.  Better than any full-size pick-up that I have driven... especially in reverse.  The bus has been a bit of a community building exercise as well.

Parking on the street would probably present a bigger issue, but you may be surprised.  Also, many people have had a nearby friend or local business OK a spot for the construction.  Get creative and you might be surprised how easy it might be to find a location to park the bus if you don't have room on your property.

For the initial demolition, I did perform the work at another more rural location out of noise concern for my neighbors.  But once all that loud cutting and banging was completed, I moved it home.  There was some initial comments, but that went away VERY quickly once I was able to get them to understand my end game.  Now they just love the updates.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ChrisFox on August 22, 2012, 12:30:08 AM
I ride the bus to work and am always amazed at how nimble those big things are. Transfer stop at a local walmart and the driver can cut though a full parking lot to turn around, weaving in and out of parked cars that I think for sure he's going to run over.  Our city is in the middle of upgrading those busses, I wonder what kind of deal I could work out for the old ones  :D
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: mckanik on September 02, 2012, 10:24:35 AM
Nothing's sturdier than the Bluebird school bus! Those who dont have the time or inclination to take on such a project should consider an older ('70s & 80s) Bluebird Wanderlodge. Built in Ga. on a school bus platform it's pretty much a ready to go BOB.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on September 04, 2012, 12:15:37 PM
My bus is registered as a "Wanderlodge" because that's the only compatible model the lady could find.  Obviously I have a bias towards Bluebirds, and the reason is as stated.  They are built head and shoulders above any other RV or school bus in terms of overall quality standard. There are some very high end bus chassis companies, but they are also high end in terms of price too.

The key for me is also the rear engine.  I can't think of a reason to NOT get a RE model, whether it's Bluebird, Genesis or whatever model and/or make you choose.

I have seen some "Wanderlodge" recently on eBay I think, the prices were VERY attractive if I didn't enjoy the whole "process" that I have put into this project.  Plus mine has several features that would need to be added on a Wanderlodge, and again... they don't really fit my needs. 

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Johnny Swampwalker on September 17, 2012, 02:16:20 PM
Love the build, Statesofmind. Creative, application-specific, and probably the classiest bush vehicle I've seen. Hats off!

I have a couple of questions:

1) Your Bluebird looks like it has a lot of ground clearance, especially for a pusher. What is your ground clearance?

2) Have you thought of a locker for firearms storage?

Thanks,

Johnny
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on September 17, 2012, 08:35:39 PM
I have about a foot clearance at the rear differential and front axle.  I did remove the front retracting step because it was scrapping occasionally. It was around 7 inches when closed.

As far as weapons storage, I already have 2 hidden, easy access areas for stowing both hunting and defense weapons.  There are a few features on the BOB that will remain unseen if you get my drift.

Sorry for the lack of updates, I've been busy in the garden and getting ready for another long cold Maine winter. I swear it feels like we spend half the year dealing with winter and the other half preparing for it. I'm planning on getting back at it soon. Updates Tao follow.

Paul
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: WVMan73 on September 18, 2012, 10:17:29 AM
There are a few features on the BOB that will remain unseen if you get my drift.

Paul

Aww man... ya mean we don't get to see the ejector seat or the missiles hidden behind the retractable headlights??? You're no fun...  ;) 8)

Looking forward to those updates! This has been one very cool project!

Mac
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: DJ-JPL on September 18, 2012, 10:45:37 AM
I figure its going to be something like this.

(http://www.joblo.com/newsimages1/busdawn.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: MichiganNimrod on September 20, 2012, 03:25:24 AM
Paul:

Great interview.  Lots of great info here as well.  Very motivating and eye opening.

Just to toss out a few questions I had after checking out the thread.

Do you have any plans to put in comms in the bus (ham or other aside from the MURS)?  Any concerns with antennas (thinking along Ham lines)?

What kind of MPG does that beast get?  (hate to ask but with $4/gal its on my mind)

Thanks for sharing your project.

Best of luck in the woods!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on September 20, 2012, 06:08:35 PM
I have CB, GMRS, MURS.  Also have SW radio reception.  I have no plans for HAM at this point.  Mileage is at 11.9 on the highway without a trailer.  I am taking the bus out this weekend towing my Tacoma for a test.  I'm guessing around 8 when she's fully loaded at 25000 lbs and towing a 5000lb vehicle.   We'll see.  Again, this is not a touring RV.  Its going between my home and hunting BOL about 130 miles away.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Josiah on September 24, 2012, 04:51:36 PM
No updates on my bluebird yet :( It still sits and waits. Just purchased a 92' Bronco so I haven't had the money to put into the bluebird just yet. As soon as I have some updates I will post them... this is a huge project as you can see in the pictures.
The first steps will be to remove the top and clear out the inside. It is currently loaded with old tools. The restoration can begin.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on September 25, 2012, 01:20:38 PM
Hopefully the frame and floor is solid.  That's the biggest key... even more than the power train.    Good luck, can't wait to see your thread!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on November 19, 2012, 06:26:52 PM
I've been patiently waiting for more pictures of your awesome project. Any more excursions you've done lately?
Keep up the great work! I hope you enjoy what you've created and get to use it for decades.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on November 20, 2012, 07:49:52 AM
It's been a crazy fall.  I have neglected getting any fresh pics and content up because I really haven't gotten anything else completed.  I have taking the bus "up ta camp" a few times, and plan to at least one more time here. 

I am preparing to order the water tanks next month and that is the winter project.  Install water tanks, pumps, heaters, etc.

I'll try and get some new content in the next couple weeks.  Thanks for checking.

P.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Adam B. on November 20, 2012, 08:46:58 AM
This is an awesome thread.

The only thing cooler than a bus you turned into your own custom camper, would be one of those 6 wheel drive military trucks turned into a custom camper. I did see an old boxy ambulance turned into a camper on Craigslist once though that had this kind of potential for only $2,000 (already converted into a simple camper, but could be further customized on the cheap).

I would MUCH rather have something like this I built myself on the cheap than some movie star bus with all the sliding boxes etc.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on January 10, 2013, 03:05:30 PM
For your limited space shower, I suggest one of those plastic over the door shoe hangers to hold shampoo bottles and such. I purchased one from Lowes four years ago for $9 and my wife and I still use it daily, sadly not at the same time. Just poke a few holes at the bottom of each to let the captured water drain out. We have no built in compartments to our very small shower and this fixed it perfectly. It looks like this:
(http://laurenm.blogs.splitcoaststampers.com/files/2007/07/my-door-hanger-storage.jpg)

..............
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Shower/shower9h.jpg)
..............

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on March 10, 2013, 07:33:06 PM
It has been far, far too long without an update. Reply with lots of pics so we can all live vicariously through you. The Internet* has spoken!




*Disclaimer: I'd like to think I speak for the rest of the Internet but in reality I'm just an echo of the past
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on March 11, 2013, 06:13:06 AM
LOL.... I will respond shortly.  I'm sorry.  It's been an event filled Maine winter and not a ton of time for the bus.  BUT, spring is coming and I will get back at it soon.  I've been busy building rabbit cages and a solar dehydrator... oh and an outhouse for the land.  That's the first order of priority, get the outhouse dug and installed once it thaws... hopefully by JULY!!!!! 
Updates coming soon.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Freebirde on March 11, 2013, 03:28:23 PM
oh and an outhouse for the land.  That's the first order of priority, get the outhouse dug and installed once it thaws... hopefully by JULY!!!!! 
Updates coming soon.

One or two seater?   When I started school we lived in what was referred to as 'four rooms and a path'.    This is for the guys, regularly take a rolled up newspaper torch and move the lit end around the underside of the opening for spiders and other creature that bite and sting.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Docwatmo on March 11, 2013, 03:35:19 PM
LOL.... I will respond shortly.  I'm sorry.  It's been an event filled Maine winter and not a ton of time for the bus.  BUT, spring is coming and I will get back at it soon.  I've been busy building rabbit cages and a solar dehydrator... oh and an outhouse for the land.  That's the first order of priority, get the outhouse dug and installed once it thaws... hopefully by JULY!!!!! 
Updates coming soon.

Of course there will be another thread showing off these project right?!  (That's a TSP order by the way.   ;) ;D)

Can't wait for the updates.

Doc
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on May 14, 2013, 07:54:05 PM
I guess the OP got hit by a bus, so no new updates.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 16, 2013, 06:19:34 PM
OK.... sorry about the long delay.  I haven't been doing much but I do have a few small things.  I'm getting ready to head out tomorrow for a weekend at the property.  I need to get a few things done.  I've decided to take the bus on it's opening season run.  While packing a few things I decided to take a few pics.  I don't think I've shown these small things yet.

I had a HD hitch welded to the frame.  I can now pull a trailer or even better my little red Toyota.  I have a tow rig set up on the truck and it works so nicely.  Anyways here's a few pics of the hitch set up.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/hitch2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/hitch3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/hitch1.jpg)


You may have noticed a small camera over the hitch... a rear view camera is now operational.  It's a decent setup.  It's an IR cam, so it gives a decent night view as well.  The camera is simply mounted with a strong magnet so it can be moved anywhere within a 12' area for a great security shot at night.  The monitor is something I got free, a killer little JVC broadcast monitor, actually got 2 of them... 2 is 1, 1 is none ya know. You can see the monitor view pretty well.  It's also nice to keep an eye on the trailer load or truck towing behind while mobile on the road. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/rearcam1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/rearcam2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/rearcam3.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/rearmonitor2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/rearmonitor5.jpg)

The bus now has 3 panels onboard, keeps me well charged.  Last fall I spent a week in the woods and never dropped below 85% while not really being to frugle.  The fridge, fans, stereo and TV/DVD were all used often.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/panels2.jpg)

The bus now has a microwave setup.  It's fine for quick things... I rarely think I will ever have much of a need, but it was cheap.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/microwave1.jpg)

Here's a look at the trailer and truck.  I am bringing these 2 tanks up to the property for a water tower setup I'm building.  These are about 300 gal each.  They will be used for washing, irrigation and such.  I am hopefully meeting a drilling rig there tomorrow for the well.  Keep your fingers crossed I have shallow water.  I'll shoot some pics and vid of that project as well.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/h2otanks2.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/h2otanks1.jpg)

Sorry for such a span with no updates, but the bus is getting pretty well to the point I was hoping.  A few other projects for sure... exterior painting is becoming the priority.  But the property needs attention and planning to.  Maybe I'll have to start a new thread there.

I'll try and get back next week with an update on this weekends progress.

Later...
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on May 16, 2013, 08:03:43 PM
Oh yea... 1 more little storage area. The 4 crates snap into place, then a tie back secures them on the road.  All lightweight stuff like bedding, towels etc.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/storagecrates1.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Hitch%20Camera%20Monitor%20n%20Water%20Tanks/storagecrates2.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: theBINKYhunter on May 16, 2013, 09:16:10 PM
nice update. this is on my bucket list.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Erigorn on May 17, 2013, 06:30:34 AM
Thanks for the updates. I pretty much stare down every school bus I see just trying to see what size style etc that I want.


My "perfect bus" right now is a rear engine diesel in the shorter size. The built in luggage compartments seems like a great idea for storage that doesn't have to be built. Want to have beds for 4-6, solar electric and solar hot water, shower, toilet, kitchen and wood burning heater. Pretty standard setup I think
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: endurance on May 17, 2013, 06:23:03 PM
Thanks for the update.  As always, you've thought of everything so we don't have to. ;)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: cmxterra on May 17, 2013, 07:49:28 PM
What voltage and wattage are your panels? Are they all going to the same charge controller?
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on May 27, 2013, 09:45:58 PM
Sorry for such a span with no updates, but the bus is getting pretty well to the point I was hoping.

NO no --- that's quite alright, I'd thoroughly enjoy posts well into the future of you using the bus, what tricks you learn to do over time, things you'd probably consider mundane. Just use the space here as a diary like the time you found the bottle o' Jack.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on July 20, 2013, 06:22:00 AM
What voltage and wattage are your panels? Are they all going to the same charge controller?
The panels are all 12v. 1 @ 85 + 2 @ 150w keep the main rack of batteries charged.  I also have a couple 25w panels. 1 for the engine batteries, the other for the soon to be installed exhaust vent inthe outhouse.

I will use this as a diary, good suggestion.  I have now PERMENANTLY parked the bus up at my property.  I am focusing on developing it now.  I am going up in the coming days to install the piping to convert my 2" outputs from my water tower tanks to 1/2 inch water piping for standard garden hose distribution.  I will get a few pics of the bus as it currently sits... then add more in the future of any additional work.  There will be some more of that too. Mostly plumbing and generator related.

I will start a new thread shortly called" The Bus has Landed". I will put it in the Homesteading section.  There I will chronicle the land from the beginnnig to where it is now.  It is really a ton of fun and it's coming along nicely. During these Maine summer months... I will be up there virtually every weekend and several weeks of vacation time put in on site.  I hope to hear from you all on that thread as well.  The ideas and support you all have given me with the bus project has meant soooo much.  Thanks a million.

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: theBINKYhunter on July 20, 2013, 02:41:51 PM
looking forward to the new thread!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 06, 2013, 04:58:19 AM
I was just working inside the bus on a rainy day on the property and thought I'd get a few pics of "Life in the Bus" to give y'all an idea of how it looks. 

As you enter, it still has a good open feel for an RV, despite a ton of gear on board.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingc.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingb.jpg)

The mornings can still be quite cool, even in July and August in Northern Maine.  Cold enough for a fire to take the chill and dampness out of the air. 
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingh.jpg)

Storage areas...
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingg.jpg)
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingf.jpg)

Counter Space is a premium...
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivinga.jpg)

Radios, Battery station.  Most everything runs off AA or AAA batteries.  I did pick up the C & D adapters, Chargers and the brand of batteries and charger from Steve Harris.  So far they are working perfect.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingd.jpg)

Kickin it until the rain clears so I can get back to the projects.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingi.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: jonathco on August 06, 2013, 09:13:03 AM
Wow, looks great! I need to start something like this soon.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on August 06, 2013, 10:02:54 AM
Wow, looks great! I need to start something like this soon.

No time like NOW!  At least start looking at possible vehicle candidate.  You don't have to spend a penny until you are ready, but start the process now.  Have Fun! 
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: strensk on August 13, 2013, 08:11:10 PM
Love this. Pretty awesome stuff!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on March 18, 2014, 02:56:03 PM
Hey All.  A long cold winter with not much going on with the bus.  I HAVE been updating the progress on the land and some additional bus updates in the "Homesteading" section under the "Bus has Landed" thread.  So check it out if you're interested.  here's a few pics of some of the more recent bus work.  Most are duplicates from the other thread. I have more planned this spring.  Actually going to begin off-grid cabin build, but I will live in the bus while that is happening.

Here's a few pics from a month ago.  I will take a few more this Saturday. I can't drive in during the winter due to the snowfall.  I have to snowshoe or CC ski in with a pack sled.  It's only 1/2 mile off plowed road so not bad at all.

Snowfall on the ground in Maine.  I have nearly 40" where the camp is.
(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Winter%20update%203-14/snowmap3-15-14.jpg)

I had a 10" snowfall and 2" of ice on top of it, so that was a fun day of clearing the panels.  They were covered for nearly a month and my battery power levels remained very strong despite a slow draw from security lighting, cameras and alarm.  I will be going up again this Saturday to clear panels and check on the property.  i want to also try and see if I can locate a natural spring or two as well.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Winter%20update%203-14/panels2.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Winter%20update%203-14/panels3.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Winter%20update%203-14/panels1.jpg)

And a quick pic of me while I could still get the 4 wheeler in. I can't wait for spring to arrive.... hopefully by JULY!!!!  Again.... if you're interested in more info on the bus and it's permanent home, check out my other thread in the "Homesteading" section under the "Bus has Landed" thread. Take care and stay safe!

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Winter%20update%203-14/paul1.jpg)

Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: PoppinZombies on April 07, 2014, 07:54:29 PM
Great stuff ! Time to find your " Bus has landed " thread now !
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on April 21, 2014, 09:11:58 PM
...This is for the guys, regularly take a rolled up newspaper torch and move the lit end around the underside of the opening for spiders and other creature that bite and sting.

No methane explosion concerns?  I've never even been near an outhouse so please pardon my speculation if unfounded...
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on April 22, 2014, 07:19:53 AM
Not an issue.  Vented.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: ImNotGivngMyName2AMachine on May 31, 2014, 02:18:55 PM
A friend sent me a link to a similar school bus project. A bit more artsy (form over function).
http://www.hankboughtabus.com
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: FarmerJim on July 07, 2014, 12:40:02 AM
This is something I would like even as a recreational "camping" vehicle or guest cabin!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on September 25, 2014, 02:53:49 PM
Sorry, I haven't paid much attention to this thread since starting the follow-up thread under "Homesteads and Self Reliant living", labeled "The Bus Has Landed". 

A friend sent me a link to a similar school bus project. A bit more artsy (form over function).
http://www.hankboughtabus.com
Thanks for the link to Hanks bus, I had seen this before.  You're right, a bit to "artsy" for my needs, but a great job none the less.


This is something I would like even as a recreational "camping" vehicle or guest cabin!
Now that my cabin is under construction, the bus will live on as my guest house.  I already have several friends who can't wait to try it out!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: AuntFaye on November 04, 2014, 06:41:25 AM
Heat is from a propane furnace and a slick little woodstove.  I have a buddy who makes these stoves for marine use and/or ice fishing.  They work perfect. .

We lived in our motor home over a winter in the Salt Lake/Utah valley.  We only used the propane heater.  The cost was about $300 a month.  So, we have bought a wood stove.  Do you have pictures of yours?  We are not sure exactly how to install it.

Aunt Faye
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on November 11, 2014, 12:52:02 PM
We lived in our motor home over a winter in the Salt Lake/Utah valley.  We only used the propane heater.  The cost was about $300 a month.  So, we have bought a wood stove.  Do you have pictures of yours?  We are not sure exactly how to install it.

Aunt Faye

If you look further up through the thread, there are some pics of it.  Here is the one I use now... both in it's useful position and it's travel location. SECURE the stove when on the road, it's a dangerous and HEAVY item to be flying around the camper in the event of a sudden stop or worse.

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Facebook/Winter%20Weekends%20at%20Camp/1614311_10202902819641093_1702642469_o.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingi.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Land%207-2013/buslivingh.jpg)

(http://i1218.photobucket.com/albums/dd410/pstatesofmind/Facebook/Later%20Bus%20Pics%20Still%20more%20to%20come/295010_10200322325970364_1154229127_n.jpg)
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Beetle on November 11, 2014, 07:29:40 PM
Wow that looks fun. Great job!
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 13, 2015, 02:08:14 PM
Sooooo.... Anybody interested in buying a bus?  I am probably going to be selling this rig.  Interested and close to Maine?  let me know.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: theBINKYhunter on January 13, 2015, 02:34:46 PM
Dude, you need to be marketing to the other side of the country and pitch it as: 'the road trip of a lifetime' or something like that. If i had the money and a place to park it i'd consider driving it back to AZ.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: TexDaddy on January 13, 2015, 03:27:54 PM
Sooooo.... Anybody interested in buying a bus?  I am probably going to be selling this rig.  Interested and close to Maine?  let me know.
When you are ready, post on the "Swap Meet" board.

http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/index.php?board=36.0
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on January 14, 2015, 05:53:24 AM
When you are ready, post on the "Swap Meet" board.

http://thesurvivalpodcast.com/forum/index.php?board=36.0

Thanks Tex!  I will do that.  Should be a month or so.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Vulcan on February 10, 2015, 11:50:17 AM
 :'( I'm all the way in CA, but I'd love to own it.
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: Cedar on February 10, 2015, 12:00:57 PM
Good idea on strapping it when moving. I missed that part before.

Cedar
Title: Re: Bug Out Bus???
Post by: statesofmind on April 21, 2015, 11:26:43 AM
The Bug Out Bus is now FOR SALE!  It's listed in the Swap meet Section.