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Re: I need advice on bus by Mark O.
Post New Message There is no one-size-fits-all bus any where. How the bus is going to be used determines more on what sort of bus is needed than anything else.

If the bus is going to used for long trips with lots of luggage a heavy duty Type 'D' with luggage compartments would be the choice.

If the bus is going to be used for mostly short trips (short being less than 2 hours) with little or no luggage a Type 'C' would be more than adequate.

As far as power packages go, get the largest engine and transmission you can find. The larger HP power packages usually come with heavier duty components all the way down the line. While they will cost more to repair when things break, because they are heavier duty you man never have any major repair expenses.

The most common school bus on the road is a Type 'C' bus on an IHC/Navistar chassis. Probably 75% of all school buses on the road on on some version of the IHC/Navistar conventional school bus chassis. The best version will have some version of the DT466 I-6 turbocharged diesel engine and the MT640 series Allison automatic transmission.

Buses purchased from fleets operating in the SW and CA in particular will command higher prices. They are able to command higher prices because they will not have any rust issues. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT consider any bus that has any sort of rust issues. Once the rust worm gets into a school bus it will cost you more to fix it than it would be to purchase another bus.

I would not lock myself into a specific model year bus. My church purchased a 1979 Gillig School Coach three years ago. It is a 12-row bus with luggage compartments, it is capable of highways speeds, and the power package was swapped out for a more modern engine and an automatic three years before we purchased the bus. We paid $5K for the bus. To replace it with a 1996 or newer bus would cost in excess of $20K.

www.a-zbus.com, www.nwbus.com, www.westernbus.com, www.schetky.com are all good companies with which to deal. All have a lot of choices in their inventories. And if you go to them with cash in hand the asking price is rarely the selling price.

Contact me directly if you want some more input. Our church has been operating a bus ministry for almost 30 years now and our fleet is now three buses and two vans.

Mark O.
Castle Rock, WA
All Messages in ThreadAuthorDate
Post New MessageI need advice on bus Jason 3-22-07  
  Reply to MessageRe: I need advice on bus Eric 4-13-07  
  Reply to MessageRe: I need advice on bus wrench 5-6-07  
  Reply to MessageRe: I need advice on bus Mark O. 10-2-07  
  Reply to MessageRe: I need advice on bus Mark O. 10-2-07  
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