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Old 09-12-2022, 05:51 PM   #1
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I don’t understand school bus conversions…

Lots of videos on YouTube…

People buy a school bus for $6000 or so.

Budget $20,000 to fix it up.

End up spending $60,000+

End product looks really really amateurish…

School bus conversion experts chime in that a “good” conversion cost $130,000 plus… not including bus or mechanicals…

Resale value 10% of amount spent.

Why?

I’m sincerely asking, not poking fun. I just don’t get it. That kind of money buys a very nice class A.

Is there some inherent benefit of owning a school bus?
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Old 09-12-2022, 05:56 PM   #2
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I believe it is something inherent about building something yourself and not just buying off the shelf.
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Old 09-12-2022, 05:58 PM   #3
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No matter how much money you throw at it, it will always be a school bus hacked into an RV. Whenever I think of hippies or those who don’t work and live in a parking lot, I always see them in a school bus.

I suppose if you did a real conversion and fill windows and sanded everything it might look better, but nobody with a school bus does that.
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:00 PM   #4
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Those conversions are done for the same reason I drive a 27 year old MH. It's the love of driving some thing that you put your blood, sweat & tears into. I suspect there isn't another class A driving down the road like mine. My choice. Ford 460/528 stroker engine and 22 years of personalization.

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Old 09-12-2022, 06:01 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by PJStough View Post
I believe it is something inherent about building something yourself and not just buying off the shelf.
You could buy a clapped out Class A, and do that. And have working plumbing, and electricity.

And have resale value…

And slides…

And leveling…

And…
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:02 PM   #6
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Those conversions are done for the same reason I drive a 27 year old MH. It's the love of driving some thing that you put your blood, sweat & tears into. I suspect there isn't another class A driving down the road like mine. My choice. Ford 460/528 stroker engine and 22 years of personalization.

Richard
Totally get it. I think I’ve updated/bled on most of my rv. I know near every square inch…
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hpozzuoli View Post
No matter how much money you throw at it, it will always be a school bus hacked into an RV. Whenever I think of hippies or those who don’t work and live in a parking l thetot, I always see them in a school bus.

I suppose if you did a real conversion and fill windows and sanded everything it might look better, but nobody with a school bus does that.
Actually there is a diesel school bus conversion sitting in Julian, CA with RV windows.
The old buss looks pretty good. It's for sale.

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Old 09-12-2022, 06:05 PM   #8
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Here’s a site I just found. Look at the prices. Then look at the product.

https://www.skoolielivin.com/classifieds/
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:31 PM   #9
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I get people wanting to do DIY projects but I always thought skoolies were absurd. With so many RV's of so many kinds out there for cheap because they need quite a bit of work why reinvent the wheel? I don't mind figuring out my plumbing and keeping it working but I sure don't want to plan and build my camper's plumbing up from nothing.

I have the same opinion of "tiny houses". They are very impractical and overly heavy camping/travel trailers that you can't actually camp or travel with at double the price. (More or less.) I just don't get either.

But I don't get why people pay good money for pants that look like the dog half shredded them. I've spent my whole life being a tad embarrassed when I had actual holes worn through my clothing.
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:41 PM   #10
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I like Keep Your Day Dream's bus conversion.
It’s at the RV/Motorhome Hall of Fame
Looky
https://youtu.be/PxIM9MH89xE
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:54 PM   #11
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I saw one.... and respected it.

I met a husband and wife, thirty-something year old's and they had one of their two children in a wheelchair.

The guy told me.... He couldn't find an RV with a wheelchair lift that he could afford, so transforming his school bus with a lift was his only choice if he wanted to take his family out to experience camping.

The guy obviously didn't have a lot of construction experience... but boy... he was sure excited to show me around it and to tell me how between YouTube and friends he got everything in and working.

I told him he did a great job and he's a great dad for going thru all that work!

I think I made his day.

Many of us take our RV's and camping for granted... Not everyone can afford this wonderful lifestyle / hobby we enjoy but others do the best they can. Some school buses are junky... but not all of them.. that one I saw, was awesome!
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Old 09-12-2022, 06:55 PM   #12
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I know some RV parks will not take schoolies. I bet you would have a hard time finding accommodations in some areas.

I think they are interesting to look at but wouldn’t own one. Plus they still ride like a school buss. I remember riding them as a kid and they have a pretty stiff ride. Wouldn’t want to drive 5 hours in one.
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Old 09-12-2022, 07:49 PM   #13
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This is a pineapple pizza question. Some people like the taste, others would never spend the money adding fruit on pizza. Trying to justify any RV in the basis of cost doesn’t take into account personal taste and style. I, for example can’t imagine traveling in an old school bus with it’s rough ride. But then I also wouldn’t travel in a little van with no standup shower, or a class c with the cramped driver’s seat. I can’t financially defend my choice either, and don’t have to. It’s what I like and what works for the person paying the bills - me.

In the words of the great philosopher Muhammad Ali:

“….different strokes for different folks.”
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Old 09-12-2022, 08:30 PM   #14
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I've known a number of people who have made themselves nice FT SB conversions.

None of them spent the kind of money you mentioned.

There are, of course, the high-end SB's, the showcases. But most SB's are much less sophisticated. Nobody films Youtube vids of them. I think the expensive ones are just ostentatious copies of that concept.

So, the moderate ones serve their RV purpose, and the expensive ones look great, which is their purpose.
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