Author Topic: Bug Out Bus???  (Read 162290 times)

Offline cmxterra

  • Dedicated Contributor
  • ******
  • Posts: 1565
  • Karma: 89
  • Bugging out in style.
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #120 on: May 07, 2012, 01:36:12 PM »
awesome work. Gives me ideas on how to do a few things on my M109

endurance

  • Guest
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #121 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.

Offline ChrisFox

  • Survivalist Mentor
  • *****
  • Posts: 906
  • Karma: 68
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #122 on: May 07, 2012, 04:35:40 PM »
To lazy to look but is this mostly a mobile setup for full time travel?

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #123 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.

Offline slingblade

  • Survivalist Mentor
  • *****
  • Posts: 333
  • Karma: 10
  • I aim to kill you with it.
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #124 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.

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #125 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.

Offline Docwatmo

  • May Ignite Spontaneously
  • Administrator
  • Survival Veteran
  • *******
  • Posts: 8711
  • Karma: 260
  • The Prepper Rising from the Ashes
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #126 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.

Offline SheepdogSurvival

  • Survivor
  • ***
  • Posts: 172
  • Karma: 18
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #127 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.

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #128 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.







Rear bunk area...





Desk area...



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.



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.



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.



Other angles of the pad...





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







Our first meal on the property... kabobs.



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.



Offline Vulcan

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
  • Karma: 5
    • My 13-In-13 Page
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #129 on: June 11, 2012, 01:01:27 PM »
Looking great! And that's too funny about that bottle of Jack!

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #130 on: June 11, 2012, 01:36:14 PM »
Yeah... mother nature's a crazy funny one. 

endurance

  • Guest
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #131 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...

Offline Nicodemus

  • HooHa Man! AKA Docs Whipping Boy
  • Moderator On Leave
  • Survival Veteran
  • *
  • Posts: 8429
  • Karma: 182
  • Wake up and smell the cat food n your bank account
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #132 on: June 11, 2012, 03:22:31 PM »
The bus looks great!

Offline TexDaddy

  • TSP Goat Wrangling Geezer. He is EVIL also.
  • Moderator On Leave
  • Forum Veteran
  • *
  • Posts: 12300
  • Karma: 265
  • I live in Texas. What country are you from?
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #133 on: June 11, 2012, 05:22:20 PM »
I am so totally impressed. An amazing vehicle for so little money.

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #134 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. 

endurance

  • Guest
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #135 on: June 11, 2012, 08:49:18 PM »
Definitely sounds like a solid start.  I'm definitely impressed.

Offline Vulcan

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
  • Karma: 5
    • My 13-In-13 Page
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #136 on: June 11, 2012, 08:56:40 PM »
Would be awesome if you made another thread just for your land.

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #137 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...



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



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...





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.





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.






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.









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.



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




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



Take care all, thanks again for the encouraging words.  Next up, trailer hitch and under floor storage!  Later.

Offline archer

  • Administrator
  • Ultimate Survival Veteran
  • *******
  • Posts: 17112
  • Karma: 380
  • #ImissAmerica
    • Journey to Greener Pastures
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #138 on: June 20, 2012, 08:30:44 AM »
great! you've earned the beer and flick and cigar!.

endurance

  • Guest
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #139 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.

Offline TexDaddy

  • TSP Goat Wrangling Geezer. He is EVIL also.
  • Moderator On Leave
  • Forum Veteran
  • *
  • Posts: 12300
  • Karma: 265
  • I live in Texas. What country are you from?
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #140 on: June 20, 2012, 04:58:55 PM »
Great job! I stand in awe.

Offline markl32

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 219
  • Karma: 12
  • TSP Support Brigade member
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #141 on: June 20, 2012, 05:15:50 PM »

You are my hero!

I hope to do this someday. 

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #142 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!

endurance

  • Guest
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #143 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!

Offline archer

  • Administrator
  • Ultimate Survival Veteran
  • *******
  • Posts: 17112
  • Karma: 380
  • #ImissAmerica
    • Journey to Greener Pastures
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #144 on: June 29, 2012, 09:21:20 AM »
woohoo! an interview! congrats!

Offline gilevi

  • Prepper
  • **
  • Posts: 17
  • Karma: 2
  • New TSP Forum member
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #145 on: June 29, 2012, 11:27:13 AM »
very impressive

Offline Nicodemus

  • HooHa Man! AKA Docs Whipping Boy
  • Moderator On Leave
  • Survival Veteran
  • *
  • Posts: 8429
  • Karma: 182
  • Wake up and smell the cat food n your bank account
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #146 on: July 06, 2012, 09:27:27 AM »
I look forward to listening to the interview.

Offline statesofmind

  • Senior Survivalist
  • ****
  • Posts: 238
  • Karma: 44
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #147 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....

AFTER...



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.


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!





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. 




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.





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.




As I was working , a quick T-Storm raced through... but left a good sign for my RV!  Don't ya think?


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. 

Offline archer

  • Administrator
  • Ultimate Survival Veteran
  • *******
  • Posts: 17112
  • Karma: 380
  • #ImissAmerica
    • Journey to Greener Pastures
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #148 on: July 09, 2012, 09:53:20 AM »
good job on the stairs!

Offline TexDaddy

  • TSP Goat Wrangling Geezer. He is EVIL also.
  • Moderator On Leave
  • Forum Veteran
  • *
  • Posts: 12300
  • Karma: 265
  • I live in Texas. What country are you from?
Re: Bug Out Bus???
« Reply #149 on: July 09, 2012, 10:13:40 AM »
1st class work!