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To buy or not to buy (school bus) Carla 7-13-03  
Hi all. I've enjoyed reading your conversations.
Here is my dilemma - I want to buy a 16 seat school bus to use around town as my family car. My husband says this ridiculously impractical. Would you all agree? Is a school bus a looney idea as transportation for me and my kids? Thanks for any helpful comments.
Re: To buy or not to buy (school bus) j 9-9-03  
Not for nothing, but your husband sounds like kind of a jerk
Re: To buy or not to buy (school bus) RoadRunnr 7-13-03  
Hmm sounds Cool to me :)
how many kids do you have?

to use a bus for every day stuff seems to be a bit much, but maybe if ya have alot of kids

leme think Minivan or bus?

id do the bus
Re: To buy or not to buy (school bus) Mark O. 8-18-03  
Actually, for what you anticipate doing, a used school bus wouldn't be that impratical. Or if not a used school bus (since the principle bread winner doesn't want a used school bus at his place of work), a used shuttle bus wouldn't be a bad alternative. Both utilize the same chassis.

It would only be practical if you could find a good one that wasn't all used up.

The only real problem with a used bus for every day transportation is most of the small buses have been used brutally hard and they are pretty well used up when they are sold.

I have three mini-buses in service. All three are on the Ford E-350 chassis with the 7.3L diesel engine. Using them brutually hard, they turn in an average of 11-14 MPG.

The real down side of using them as hard as we do is transmissions last, on average, about 35K miles. Front brake pads are replaced about every 10K miles with rotors replaced about every third set of pads. Front calipers are replaced every third set of rotors.

As far as driving them goes, if you understand the sightline limitations from the driver's seat, they are easier to drive than most cars. You sit up higher and you have a lot more mirrors so you can see where you are going and where you have been.

The 4-row buses will go anywhere you can take a full size pick-up since they are about the same length. If you take one set of seats out of a 4-row bus you won't need any special license to drive it.

Good luck.

Mark O.
Re: To buy or not to buy (school bus) Andy 7-14-03  
I think if this because you think a school bus is practical, then I'm with your husband, 16 seats means about 50 passenger and I'm sure you don't have that many kids. You will probably only get about 5 mpg. If it's because you want a school bus, I can relate and it would be fun to have a school bus, then go for it! People all over the country are wasting gas in SUV's when they have no need for them either.
Re: To buy or not to buy (school bus) Carla 7-15-03  
Thank you so much for your comments.
Actually, I mistyped - it is a 16 passenger bus, not a 16 seat bus; however, the head of our household/the bread winner, isn't excited by the idea. In fact, he said if I bought a bus for our transportation, I would not be allowed to go anywhere near his place of business!
We only have 4 children, so no, we don't NEED a bus, but I thought it would be much roomier (I would probably take out a couple of seats) and we could make it a family project. I guess I would be biting off more than I could chew, huh?
5 miles to the gallon? Well, my Ford Econoline van gets between 8 and 10, so... Thanks again for taking the time to answer.
If you leave al the seats in... kd5kfl 7-15-03  
You WILL need a CDL.

Impractical is right. I frequently drive a Ford F150 long wheelbase in city traffic. No visibility, no acceleration, takes up two of todays almost-a-parking spaces, not fun
I guess I got my answer! Carla 7-15-03  
Well, I guess I'll just get another conversion van! If only I could find a conversion van that could seat 10-12 people - then I'd be happy (my brother has 4 children also, and we've often discussed how nice it would be if we could have a vehicle that could carry all the kids)!
Thanks for participating in my day dream!
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