School Bus RV Conversion

Posted on Nov 30, 2009 in Alt Energy, Tiny Homes, & Structures
School Bus Conversion Camper RVbus conversion interior

 

(VolSlatt) – In 1982 I was a sophomore at a small college in the Midwest. It was the beginning of second term and I was again standing in line at the on-campus book store waiting to pay for a too-heavy stack of text books. The line was not moving at all so I put my books down on the floor and started flipping through the coffee table books on display. The book I chose to pick up first was titled Rolling Homes – Handmade House on Wheels by Jane Lidz. Thus the seed was planted.

Sometime in late August, 2004 this seed suddenly germinated and I started researching and preparing for this project. I located several good on-line sources of information, ordered a copy of Ben Rosander’s Select and Convert Your Bus Into a Motorhome on a Shoestring, made some sketches of floor plans, started collecting materials and fittings, and researched the cost of insurance and registration. My project is a 1989 Thomas Saf-T-Liner MVP with a rear mounted CAT 3208 engine.

It was originally built for 75 Passengers with a GVWR 30,000 lbs. It’s got about between 80 and 100K miles on it and originally came from Montrose, NY. The interior dimensions are 35′ x 7.5′ x 6.5′. I bought it on eBay for $2031.00.

Now the project has begun! Herein you will find the details of each step of the process of my school bus conversion into a family camper. This is a low-budget project, wherever possible materials will be re-used and recycled.

 

Tools you’ll need:

angle grindercordless drill

 

Some of the tools that are particularly useful for bus conversion.

Preparation:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step one, have a party and remove the seats!

Floorplan:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Floor Plans

Floor Plans

 

 

 

 

 

 

Preliminary floor plan.

Framing:

Adding Insulation

Adding InsulationMore Insulation

 Insulation and framing.

Bunks:

Building the Bed Building the Bed
Building More Beds

Building More Beds

Building bunks and a double bed in the master bedroom.

Cabinetry: 

Desk

DeskCabinets

Cabinetry fore and aft.

Bathroom:

Bathroom Base
Bathroom Base
Bathroom Finished Bathroom Finished

 Installing the shower and fitting out the bathroom.

Tanks and Plumbing:

blackwater and drinking water tanksboth tanks in

Hanging the tanks and general plumbing.

Propane:

Bottles in bayattaching the stove

Cooking with gas!

Lighting:

single Edison bulb adaptersat night

Lighting, 12 volt conversion bulbs and kerosene.

Dinette:

steel base of school bus seatmirror over dinette

Dinette and convertible spare bed.

Electrical:

 

Electric supply and wiring.

Electronics:

ATX PSUATX PSU 12 Volt Converter

Converting an ATX power supply to be a 12 volt bench supply.

Kitchen:

Building the kitchen.

Paint:

Painted Front 

Painting the bus with True Value XO-Rust.

Body & Chassis:

Holes left by flashing lightsScreens on the bus

Body work, screen, seat mounting.

Engineer’s Log:

unbolting the fan bladeRadiator back from the shop

Radiator replacement.

Safety:

backup camera monitorwheel chocks for bus

Wheel chocks, backup monitor, fire extinguishers, CO & smoke detectors.

Interior Paint & Decor:

interior latex paint in front of the busmystic seaport bus bunk back wall 

Interior painting and finish

 

See more of this author’s projects and articles over – here – at VolSlatt.com

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