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Author Topic: It's a beautiful day!  (Read 2449 times)
Devin & Amy
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1980 MC9 8v71 4spd man. Fulltiming family of 6




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« on: July 17, 2006, 04:19:22 AM »

Hi all,

Good morning, I am going out to start another week on the bus. I only have a month of vacation left to finish.

The sunrise is shining off the windows as I look out. I Love that bus.

It's a lot of work, rules all my thoughts, takes most of my time and more of my money. I love that bus.

Have a nice week.

Devin
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Devin, Amy, and the kids!!
Happily Bussin'!!
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« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2006, 04:47:15 AM »

Devin;

I feel your pain.  For the better part of two years, I worked on my 4107 to the chagrin of my wife.  Sometimes I would just go out there, turn on the air conditioners and just sit in it.  It's all I ever thought about.  I carried pictures in my wallet, along with pics of my son.  I used it as a screensaver on my computer at work and had my computer configured to sound like a Detroit 8V71 firing up every morning when I logged on.  My co-workers thought I was a nut.

Lots of time, I spent just polishing stuff or fixing little minor annoyances.  I remember even working out in the rain a few times, now that's an illness.

Enjoy it!  Some men hunt, others play golf, some chase women or ride motorcycles...me, I just enjoy the feel of a 35' behemoth underneath me, rolling about 70 down the interstate.  Looking "down" on everybody else.  Plus, I know some of the busnuts on this board probably do all those other things, in addition to being a busnut!

Jimmy 
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« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2006, 08:21:41 AM »

When I first started the conversion in Mar of '94, I took off 15 months to start the project.  I was still single then and spent Mon-Fri at the warehouse working on the bus.  The warehouse had a bathroom, I slept in the small office, and showered in the morning standing in a concrete mixing tub with one of my water heaters hooked up to a garden hose-worked well (just dumped the water onto the parking lot).  Went to the '95 bus conversion get together at Laughlin, Nv with just the bed and bath in (now that was a convention with staying at Riverside RV park, big tent with vendors, conference rooms for talks, Oak Ridge Boys performance at night for us-would love to see that kind of get together again!).  Then after going back to work, would drive my truck 9 months and work on the bus 3 months until it was done in 2000.
Now my wife is jealous of my hobby.  That I have the board to go to-go to the bus and fiddle with new projects.  Just to give you an idea, last year I had new air bags (all Cool installed, manual air assisted steering changed to full Sheppard power, 6 new tires, changed the rear lights to LED, installed back up camera, had all new RV windows installed replacing the rattly transit windows.  I had to experiment with different window surrounds since the RV windows bolted from outside without a vanity ring.  This year I finally settled on a rubber door bottom weather stripping screwed at 3 inch intervals (tried gluing but the heat softened the glue).   Installed a dash fan (great for just blowing on the driver-much cooler), installed a cooling fan for the electrical equipment, added two electrical plugs, ordered a custom air to air intercooler for the turboing of the 8V-71N and installed it in front of the radiator, rewired the towed electrical lights switching them from wired through the cars lights to two sets of magnetic LED lights, just ordered this weekend the Duran 10 wheel tire pressure monitor system.
The combination of designing and planning my next project in my head, actually working on the bus, and also planning our next outing is the only thing that keeps me going-it isn't my job-although the job is a good one.
We're called Bus Nuts for a reason!  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
Clarke Echols
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« Reply #3 on: July 17, 2006, 10:46:38 AM »

Devin;

 I ... had my computer configured to sound like a Detroit 8V71 firing up every morning when I logged on.  My co-workers thought I was a nut.

Jimmy 

You are a nut.  But nuts have more fun. Smiley 

I should do something like that with a recording of my DD Series 50 firing up.

CE
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« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2006, 04:14:11 PM »

Now the 8V71 sound file - sounds like a wonderful idea.  I recently purchased a converted 4107, but won't pick it up for another few weeks.  It's getting some mechanical attention that I wouldn't do myself anyway, I intend to focus on some body panels, but mostly the interior.  I'm wondering the reverse - if there's some way I can replace the partially solid wall with original windows, so it looks more like a coach again (from the exterior).

I've been doing the photo thing, and planning what I want to do after I get it home (3000 miles or so, including a family trip along the way.  Can't wait to get my hands on it, but I do have to wait. 

So, a sound file of an 8V71 for computer startup, with maybe a 4512 (transit) horn for shutdown, hmmm.  Would take me back a few decades to starting in the business --- good thing the office is in the house.  Thanks for the idea.  Is there any way to post sound files here, if you're willing to share?

Arthur Gaudet   Carrollton, TX
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
ceieio
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« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2006, 10:10:01 PM »


So, a sound file of an 8V71 for computer startup, with maybe a 4512 (transit) horn for shutdown, hmmm.  Would take me back a few decades to starting in the business --- good thing the office is in the house.  Thanks for the idea.  Is there any way to post sound files here, if you're willing to share?

Arthur Gaudet   Carrollton, TX

Arthur - it is a 671 but it sounds great to me.  I can't really hear the difference between the 8v71 and the 671 anyway.  The all sound great to me!
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Craig MC7 - Oregon USA
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« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2006, 10:54:38 PM »


So, a sound file of an 8V71 for computer startup, with maybe a 4512 (transit) horn for shutdown, hmmm.  Would take me back a few decades to starting in the business --- good thing the office is in the house.  Thanks for the idea.  Is there any way to post sound files here, if you're willing to share?



Arthur -

Ask and ye shall receive:

http://www.pacbus.org/flash/detroit.swf


PS: "Runcutter" is a GREAT handle. . . wonder how many busnuts know what it means?   Cheesy

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RJ Long
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« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2006, 07:16:27 PM »

Russ, thanks for the link - all the right noises.  I make my living in the transit industry - it's surprising how many folks in transit don't quite know what a runcut is.  It's kind of like the Food Network's story of stadium food, where they describe Howard Cosell using the word "nacho" to describe everything in the world.  When I teach, I start off by defining terms - runcut, headway (what's a headway - about 10 or 12 pounds, I think).

Arthur Gaudet  Carrollton, TX 
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
Devin & Amy
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« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2006, 07:25:43 PM »

I would really like to know. Please?

Devin
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Devin, Amy, and the kids!!
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« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2006, 08:12:54 PM »

Devin, I'm sorry, didn't mean to be obtuse, but didn't want to hijack your thread. 

In transit, the "Runcut" is the drivers' work schedule.  The short version is that routes are designed, to link demand generators (housing to work, shopping, medical, education, etc.).  After routes are designed, they're scheduled - by developing the round-trip running times (dictated by traffic, projected boardings/alightings, etc., and including recovery time - layover at the end of the line.  Next, the span of service (start-emd time, weekday, Sat, Sun) is developed.  Then comes the level of service - frequency (headway).  Policy headways are used where demand is not great, that says that the system (route) deserves a minimum level of service (every 60 minutes, every 30 minutes as examples).  In other cases, high demand dictates higher service.  Round-trip running time, divided by desired headway, generates the number of buses needed (90 minute round-trip time, 30 minute headway yields 3 buses).

Vehicles are then assigned to "Blocks" - or the group of times operated by each vehicle.  Now, the most efficient use of vehicles dictates keeping them out on the road - each time they deadhead from or to the garage, that's unproductive time that costs, both in labor (drivers) and in mileage-related variable costs.  So, a block may be out 17 hours, from garage to garage.

Finally, we're at the Runcut.  Strictly, the runcut is the drivers' work schedule.  In the example above, that would most likely mean cutting the 17 hour block into 2 pieces. When that's done systemwide, you end up with a nujmber of "Work Runs", each of which is the indivual workday for one driver.  So, we end up with a bunch of work runs for Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, and Sat, Sun.  On, then, to the final task, putting together the workweek for drivers.  Since they typically work either a five-day, or a four-day week, it's selecting the work runs for each workday, and the remaining days off.  When work runs are so packaged into "Assignments", that's called the "Rostering" process.

Drivers then select their assignments, based on seniority.

There are variations, some properties (standard language for a bus operating system) don't package the runs into assignments, but let drivers pick day by day, this is called picking "Cafeteria" style.

The Howard Cosell comment is based on my experience in the industry, I'm now a consultant, but have been in the bus business for something over 35 years.  I've been called in many times to deal with "the runcut", which, of course, is only one element.  The real problem may have been inadequate running times, recovery times, poor route design, or something else.  The manager calling me in used he word "runcut" because they didn't understand the specifics.  On the Food Network show, they explained how Cosell had eaten nachos for the first time, and fell in love with the new word he used.  He then used it to describe football plays, and a plethora of things other than food.  When I teach, my point in using that example is that any technical language has to be used accurately.  My mechanic's told me that my 4107 has a bent cooling fan blade ($), they're trying to find a replacement blade.  He didn't tell me "your fan is broken" - which could have meant the hydraulic drive ($$$$), the driver's interior fan, or that it had been broken by being forced through the radiator ($$$$$$$$$$$).       

Gee, I thought that was the short version.  It's probably more than you wanted to know.

Arthur Gaudet   Carrollton, TX
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
Devin & Amy
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« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2006, 05:33:43 AM »

Authur,

Thanks for the info. I did want to know.

Here's another question. You basically described the city transit system.
I have a long haul bus, Wichita Falls to Memphis, with Presley Tours also in the Destination roll.
Would the longhaulers have short runs also scheduled during holidays etc.? (Presley Tour)
Also what would be the process in the runcut of all day trips?
How many drivers to get to Memphis from Wichita Falls?

Thanks for the "inside info"! Grin

Devin
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Devin, Amy, and the kids!!
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Jimmy
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« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2006, 05:39:38 AM »

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Arthur Gaudet   Carrollton, TX

Arthur,

If I remember correctly, there is a great bus company in Kerrville, TX.  How far are you from there?

I remember they did some work on a bus we had whenever I sang full-time gospel music with a group called The Brashears.  We had an MC7 that broke down on us and the folks at Kerrville were awesome!  They also had a bunch of old buses there that we "played" on all day!

Jimmy
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"Ask yourself this question...Are you funky enough to be a globetrotter?  Well are you???  ARE YOU?!?!

deal with it."            Professor Bubblegum Tate
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« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2006, 11:16:50 AM »

Devin -

Scheduled Line-Haul service, such as Greyhound, Trailways, etc. also have what the transit industry calls runcuts, but they're slightly different.  Conceptually the same, tho.

Runcuts do not apply when you're talking about charters and tours, however.  That's a whole different ballgame.

Unless requested, drivers who are assigned to charters and tours are usually those who work what's known as the "extra board" - basically drivers who are available to cover sick, vacation, extra work, charters, tours, etc.

When Arthur talked about drivers bidding on their work assignements by seniority, both for the transit and line-haul segments, these drivers can either bid on regularly scheduled work, or bid to work the XBD.  All drivers are different - some like the regularly scheduled stuff, some like the variation of the XBD, where you never know what you're going to do on a daily basis until you get to work (or the dispatcher calls you at Oh Dark Thirty!!)

If a bus company specializes in charters and tours only, then most of the driver's work is basically like the XBD, usually on a "first in - first out" basis, with requests honored as much as possible.  In most cases, the driver will work with the chartering party for the entire time they have the coach, but there are exceptions.  In other cases, driver Jones may pick up Group A at the airport, transport them to their hotel, then take the group to Disneyland (for example).  After dropping Group A (who will now be in the park for 8 - 10 hours), Jones picks up Group B at their hotel and transports them to Knott's Berry Farm, then off to pick up Group C at their hotel and transport them to the airport, where he'll pick up Group D and take them to their hotel.  By now, he's "out of hours" for the day, so he returns the coach to the garage.  Now driver Smith takes the coach and heads out to pick up Group A and B and any other work that he's assigned.  With this type of an operation, you can begin to understand the importance of good radio equipment and excellent dispatching skills.  (Good Dispatchers - the "unsung heros" of the transportation industry!!)

BTW, all this has evolved from the Railroad industry, and even the airlines use a conceptually similar program for crew assignments, both cockpit and cabin.

HTH. . .
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RJ Long
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« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2006, 07:46:30 PM »

Devin, it's been over 3 decades since I really worked in anything other than city transit, but my memory says that Russ is right on.

Jimmy, I met the folks at Kerrville some years ago when I was doing some safety work - and was very impressed by both the people and the operation.

Arthur Gaudet   Carrollton, TX
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
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« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2006, 11:23:07 AM »

Devin,

It is a great day.

I like you am really enjoying my bus and the fun of working on it.

We just came back from a 2 week trip that was not without its exciting points, but I enjoyed it.

I asked my son last night if he wanted to take a short ride on Saturday with me to do a test and he responded

"I have had enough of the bus for a little bit" Tongue

Two weeks may be there limit, but not I.

Good luck with the bus and your family on the road.

Cliff
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1975 GMC  P8M4905A-1160    North Central Florida

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