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Author Topic: Any suggestions on doing bus work with no helper?  (Read 3243 times)
belfert
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« on: June 26, 2006, 09:20:43 AM »

Any suggestions on how I can do stuff like cover windows on my bus without a helper?  I'm getting to the point where almost everything requires help to lift plywood panels and such.

I'm single so I don't have a wife or any kids to help out.  My friend was helping a fair amount, but he got a new job working 12 hour shifts Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

I usually am home from work by 4 pm amd ready to work by 5 pm, so I could get more done in the evening if I had a way to do two person jobs myself.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2006, 09:42:06 AM »

Brian,

What area of the country are you in?  You may have some busnuts around who would exchange help for your help. 

Hope this helps, Phil

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« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2006, 09:44:41 AM »

Brian,
  I usually make a temporary bracket/brace to help hold pieces in place. I also use a lot of clamps (Spring clamps, pipe clamps, quick clamps, vice grips, etc. To install panels I clamp a temporary ledge for the panel to rest on.  These methods are certainly not as fast as having a helper, but it helps get'r done.  Jack
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« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2006, 09:46:48 AM »

Brian,

I always hire a few out of school teenagers to do a few chores during the summer.

If you know of any kids in your neighborhood, check with their parents.

Since you really only need a helping hand, they may be perfect for a little better than minimum wage.

FWIW

Cliff
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« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2006, 09:49:53 AM »

I use two way sticky tape to hold stuff until I can properly secure it. the neighbors only help for a few minutes but stay for a really long time. Use the really good stuff and not much of it.
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« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2006, 10:17:51 AM »

Brian,

It's called CLONING.......  Heck, I do it all the time when one of my employees call out!

Good Luck-
Nick
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belfert
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« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2006, 01:34:13 PM »

The neighborhood I live in has pretty much all elderly people or young kids.  There is only one collge student who might be interested in helping for pay.

As far as clamping goes, once I get past the first window, I won't have a way to clamp one end.  Any suggestions on that?

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2006, 01:37:34 PM »

you can alway contact one of those day labor places such as work force.  depending on where you live it'll cost you 10-12 dollars per hour per person.  If you have no other alternatives you still have that option
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2006, 01:48:44 PM »

Brian     
    When you install the first panel, leave out one of the rivets in the end that the next panel atteched to. Insert a bolt through this hole. Measure and drill a matching hole in the end of the next panel to go up. You can then clamp the other end of the second panel and remove the bolt and replace with a rivet.  Not as fast as with a helper, but if no helper is available, it will git'r done.  Hope this helps, Jack
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2006, 03:09:18 PM »

Brian two things come to mind and one really works in both cases! Ahhh yeah ahhh, oh yeah had to finish my beer, and then I forgoet where I was on this!
Beer! If you buy the beer you usually can get someone to come by and help! (I know it sounds lame but it usually works! Grin Roll Eyes ) LOL!!
The other option see if there's a local rescue mission (homeless shelter), now before you go freak'n out and think'n ain't no way hear me out! I learned this one from working big truck wrecks where we needed extra laborers! Call or better yet stop by the mission and speak to someone in charge, tell them what yer doin' (around supper time is a great time to go then most of the guys are around, and you can meet some of them!) and that you'll feed 1 or 2 of them supper, and pay them for how many hrs. you plan on using them, and either pick them up or meet them at a bus stop, and give them a ride home when done (be sure to empisize to the person in charge you'll drive them staight home when done working! That way they don't go off gettin' in trouble or picked for wondering yer neighborhood) pay them with a check (the mission will cash it for them and take out any $ they are required to pay as part of staying at the mission!) These missions have strict rules about drugs and alcohol and stuff like that and the guy's staying at them are not yer typical street bum or druggie, but guys down on their luck and staing a short time at the mission while they get back on their feet (they have rules to follow, chores to do contributions to make & etc. in order to be allowed to stay at the missions and most don't wanna screw it up and end up out on the street!). Chances are you'll meet a pretty decent guy who'll be glad to make a $, and be willing to help when ever you call and request him too! Now for your own protection of course never let them in yer house alone, if you do buy some beer (until ya get to know him a little) keep it at a 6 pk or so and you go grab both of you one once in a while not let him go grab 'm every 3 mins. (or ya know what I mean), Keep things laid out in an organized fashion (tools, materials, etc.) & explain to him you want him to help with this so you don't have to waste time searching for stuff (but the most important reson is you can tell at a glance if something comes up missing as your cleaning up for the evening!), then when you take them home go staight there and unless it's for cigarettes or a soda take him straight to the mission (this keeps them from wanting to go get drugs or alcohol, or what ever!) and as I said before pay him with a check that way #1 you have record that you paid him! #2 What his name is should there ever be a problem! #3 The missions like it because they usually ask these guys to pay X% of what ever they make to help off set the costs of housing and feeding them! I have had very good sucess hiring spare hands this way, and it's cheaper & usually better help than hiring thru the temp services! (especially for the type of work & hrs. you'll be using them!). We've actually ended making fulltime employees out of them before which is what the mission is attemping to eventually do, to get them out supporting themselves! I know it is a long post but hopefully it will be useful to you or anyone else needing a spare hand some time and I know the missions and the guys from them benefit greatly this way!  Grin Cool BK

Grin Cool Only 4 more days to VOTE when is best for you, an your's for the "TN Fall Bus Bash at Knuckle's! Cool Grin
Smiley Grin Cool  We gonna have a BLAST at the"TN Fall Bus Bash" at Knuckle's  Cool Grin Smiley
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Dallas
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« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2006, 03:29:24 PM »

Bryce,
That was a very good idea you came up with.
At one time I had to pick up a load ofcanned vegetables that another driver had spilled going around a corner in Louisville.
I tried 5 different temp agencies and couldn't get one person to come out and help.
I ended up going to the Salvation Army and they sent me 'volunteers' to help. I paid each one and the Sally Van came to pick them all up when it was done.
The State of Ky was happy, they didn't have a huge clean up bill to try and collect, The Trucking company was happy, it cost half what the temp agencies wanted, plus was done in about six hours. Insurance was happy, they didn't have to fight about paying the state workers wages. And, I was exstatic! I got home before 5 O'clock in the morning.

Two trite but true phrases come to mind:

"There But For The Grace Of God Go I."

and

"It's Not a Hand Out, It's A Hand Up!"

Thanks for reminding us to help our fellow man.

Dallas
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« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2006, 03:58:43 PM »

Dallas I hear ya! BTDT!  Grin BK

Grin Cool Only 4 more days to VOTE when is best for you, an your's for the "TN Fall Bus Bash at Knuckle's! Cool Grin
Smiley Grin Cool  We gonna have a BLAST at the"TN Fall Bus Bash" at Knuckle's  Cool Grin Smiley
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« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2006, 08:53:36 PM »

Jigs and fixtures are how I did it. Example: For installing metal over window openings I used a rented hydraulic scissor lift and I built two "T" brackets. The bottom of each "T" was placed across the front rail of the lift and rested also on the back rail. Where the "T" back rail crossed the back rail I tied the "T" semi-loosly to the back rail. Just tight enough where the "T" could slide though the rope. I then fabricated a 2" wide "hook" and riveted this to the bottom leg of the "T". At the top leg of the "T" I riveted a decent magnet. This fixture allowed me to lower the scissor as close to the ground as possible and then lift one end of a metal panel up and into one of the hooks and then against the magnet at the top. I then lifted the other end onto the the "T" "hook" and then against the magnet at the top. This now allowed me to raise the lift and drive it into position beside the bus and then slide the panel toward the bus and into the rivet position. I did all of this in the July sun and with heat lamps on the back side for thermal growth. I used Sikaflex everywhere the metal touched and simple started inside and drilled and riveted toward the outside. Sounds complicated but we are talking extremely simple and fast. Good luck!
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« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2006, 05:01:29 AM »

Contact your local church youth director. Quite often they have fundraising going on, and may be willing to help you for donations for their mission trips, outings, etc.

The only thing here is you need to be organized when they get there so they're not standing around. You also need to provide safety equipment (goggles, ear plugs, gloves, etc) that may be needed.


I can't believe there isn't some older gentleman in the neighborhood who's been walking by staring at the bus with envy who you could get to help you out from time to time. The day we raised our roof, one of the neighbors had a birthday party for their toddler. We looked over one time, and all the men folk were standing on the corner of the lawn closest to our house watching us, and pointing. I couldn't hear what they were saying , but it was clear they'd all have rather been over with me than at that birthday party.  Cheesy

Get your neighbors involved in the project. They'll be more likely to accept it, than fight it and make trouble for you (not that they necessarily are now).

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« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2006, 06:31:42 AM »

I would suggest you try a drywall lift. You can rent one at most any rental store and usually lift at least 12'. You can lift it laying flat (horizontal) or standing up (vertical).
Richard


Any suggestions on how I can do stuff like cover windows on my bus without a helper?  I'm getting to the point where almost everything requires help to lift plywood panels and such.

I'm single so I don't have a wife or any kids to help out.  My friend was helping a fair amount, but he got a new job working 12 hour shifts Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

I usually am home from work by 4 pm amd ready to work by 5 pm, so I could get more done in the evening if I had a way to do two person jobs myself.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2006, 12:15:33 PM »

Hey Greg,

Whatever you did, however you did it, your bus turned out great!  That is one good looking rig...

Jimmy
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« Reply #16 on: June 27, 2006, 08:10:52 PM »

Hey Greg,

Whatever you did, however you did it, your bus turned out great!  That is one good looking rig...

Jimmy

Thanks Jimmy!
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« Reply #17 on: June 27, 2006, 08:35:04 PM »

These might help

http://www.airpartsinc.com/products/cleco-fasteners.htm

Also a window glass suction cup handle might help for a temporary handle or 2.  You can use a pulley and hang it from the rain gutter to lift and hold.

How 'bout one of these
http://da.harborfreight.com/cpisearch/web/search.do?keyword=stud+welder

Tack some studs on the inside to to hold it in and flush until you get it glued or riviteded

Or this
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=36903  use a piece of steel on the back if your using alum.


Let gravity help by by laying the bus on its side Cheesy Cheesy  or have enough beer so it looks sideways. Shocked  it's getting late and we haven't even started on the finer qualities of ducttape Roll Eyes Grin







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« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2006, 04:34:32 AM »

Here's a unique idea. . . Marry some crazy butt woman who is insance enough to enjoy working on a bus.   Cool  Christy Hicks
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« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2006, 06:44:10 AM »

Bottom line is there are just some jobs that require 4 hands.  A couple of the jobs-I filled in my windows with 3/4" plywood glued two deep screwed to the rim of the opening.  I did that my self.  But when it came to glueing the aluminum exterior sheet to it, there was no way I could do it myself since I was using contact cement.  With 4 hands was able to get it positioned right the first time.  If I had been just riveting it in place, I probably could have done it myself.  The other 4 hand jobs were plywooding the interior and glueing the kemlite to the ceiling of the bathroom.  Also, had help with installing the generator and its' close to 600lb worth.  Other than these jobs, I was able to do everything else myself.
The jobs that I contracted out were the actual spraying of the foam insulation (nasty job that I wouldn't ever consider doing), laying the carpet (best for a professional), the body work and painting of the exterior (too big-a-eat), and overhauling the engine.  It took me 6 years working when I was off from the road.  Would run 9 months and take the 3 winter months off-that's when I worked on the bus.
By the way, if you do have someone that is helping you, I have found that two people working together can get three times the work done.  Sounds odd, but that's what I found.  Good Luck, TomC
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