OK guys as I promised the rear end in our '95 Setra S217 had a major problem!
And we were unable to find a used or rebuilt unit to replace it with! I tried everywhere, but it either wasn't the right part, or they didn't have it!
Setra wanted $10,330.51 for a new one. Weller Re-manufacturing couldn't get me a rebuilt 1 and couldn't give me set price to rebuild mine, ($8,500 +/- and I had to ship it to Michigan for unknown amount of time!) they wouldn't give me a guaranteed price cap or time limit. But they could get me a new one in 2 to 3 weeks for $24,000 + taxes & shipping from Germany! (yeah I asked if they had to take drug tests, and then told him I thought he had smoked his lunch!)
ProGear from Orlando did quote me a better price on rebuilding mine (sorta) $5,000.00+/- and again I had to ship it to FL. But they again couldn't or wouldn't guarantee a price cap but "we're sure it'll be cheaper than that $8,500 price you got!" And they said they probably could do it in 4 days from the time they got it, until the time they shipped it back out (as long as they didn't have problems getting any parts!)! OK I know this bus, and I know ANY time we needed a part that wasn't simple, or Setra didn't already have on the shelf. It has to come from Germany! BTDT!
So all that said we knew we couldn't just take it out and send it off without a guarantee of how long we'd be down. And well Setra had 5 of them. So Robert and I drove to Greensboro, NC and picked it up from Setra North America's HQ and main facility!
We brought it home and got it installed. (not without, cussing, busted knuckles, smashed fingers, and getting very ill (attitude & physically!) & dirty!
Anyway once it was in and I was up at the house trying to stay indoors and get over the cold/flu whatever it was.Dad and Chuck were down at the shop finishing up putting the axles back in, hooking the driveshaft back up, filling it with lube, etc. When dad called me and told me "son.........we got a problem.............." I said "OK what is it?" He asked "well how does 6 reverse and 1 forward gear sound?"
Oh I was FURIOUS! I could not believe it! I instantly thought SETRA had done it again and screwed me over with the wrong part AGAIN!
I scrambled for the shop, busted in the door, flew down the pit steps to where dad was. I looked at him and said "well looks like the SOB's did it AGAIN! Are you sure?!?" Dad just shook his head and smiled As I took my cell phone out of my pocket and was frantically searching for Setra's # dad laughed and took my phone and quietly said "it's not their fault that we put it in upside down! LOL!" I was in shock! "WHAT, NO *&^%$#@ WAY!" Dad said "yup look here the drive shaft won't even hook up because of the safety loop in the way, and if you look carefully at it the bolt pattern it the same either way!"
I was still in shock, but as I studied it, I saw he was right! Man SOB! Well I went and started dragging the tools bag out and started taking it loose, dad asked "well what is the plan?" I told him "well it ain't gonna turn itself over!" Then I asked "well it is a bunch of drunk sorority girls it's supposed to haul tomorrow night, and it does have a back up camera, can't we just send it like it is? Nobody will notice, they'll all be to drunk!" Dad laughed and said "but the driveshaft won't clear the safety loop!" While shaking his head and laughing! I yelled out "Chuck" when Chuck answered I told him "bring the smoke wrench cart over here by the pit and pass the end down here and turn on the gas!" Dad laughed even harder and said "no we gotta do it right!" Chuck yelled out "Mr. Gene I like Bryce's idea better for the week end! LOL!"
But dad won, and we pulled it flipped it and when I was ready to go for the night Chuck spoke up laughingly and said "Dang we did that in less than half the time it took the first time, I'll bet by this time next week we'll really have it down fast!" I just walked toward the shop door and told dad "dad remind me to fire Chuck tomorrow right after we finish this up!"
Ya know Chuck tried staying one step ahead of me the next morning constantly moving on to the next item without saying a word. And constantly watching me too! We finished putting in the axles and Chuck filled the hubs as I filled the rear end.
All eyes were on me as I got in it and started it, I finally stepped back out and asked "what?" Chuck, Robert, & Cathy (mom & dad had already left on their trip)
all looked at me and said "well we are just trying to figure out where to run to in case it don't work, cause we don't wanna be anywhere within ear range or shooting range when you come out of it!
But it started fine, and I'd already aired it up, so I hit "D" and walla it drove out FORWARD! Everybody clapped, and Chuck and Cathy went to getting ready to clean & wash it! Robert and I went to the house/office so I could get Robert's trip info for him, and so I could get ready to go out myself! Below I'm attaching a picture of what came to $11,100.34 not counting gas, time, cleaning supplies, gasket sealer, lube, labor or anything except the check I wrote to Setra for the differential!
By the way if ya hear I'm in jail you'll know that they caught up with me for that bad check!