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Author Topic: Give a newbie your input  (Read 4910 times)
ruthi
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« Reply #15 on: October 30, 2009, 03:38:25 PM »

Don at Choo Choo has a couple of really nice buses for sale at his place. Not 102, but, they are in really good shape, and the price is right.
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Mixed up Dina, ready for the road as of 12/25/2010
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« Reply #16 on: October 30, 2009, 03:58:19 PM »

He has his heart set on 102" and I don't blame him at all. Ask anyone-does 6" really make that much difference? LOL
It's Cody's fault, he got me started Grin
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Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #17 on: October 30, 2009, 05:38:36 PM »

Philip,
I don't know much about MCI's or buses in general. But first off just because it's a 102" wide does not make it a pot o' gold!
OK lets start with the not airing up on one side! OK there are any # of reasons it might not air up. OK could be as mentioned one or both bags, leveling valves, plugged line (doubtful!), or the most likely rusted out air beams! (air beams are the big boxy looking things over the bags many people confuse as "the frame."
That said even if it is the air beams, it ain't the end of the world! Just lots $ and time to repair. But still better yet (still $ & time) but less of each, replace with rolling lobe airbags! (good ride and fixed for good!) Of course still less $ and about the same amount of time is "plating the bags." Which is where a special block off plate is mounted between the air beam and airbag and the air goes into the bag thru the plate! OK fix, but harsher ride (do to the low air volume of the small bags), and the plates do eventually wear down and start leaking!
OK we got that out of the way!

Now for rust 4 main areas to look! In rear luggage bay rear wall near bulkhead! If it's rusted through (holes you can see thru) or has fresh paint (like it was just repaired), look farther!
OK well look farther anyway! Check in the blower area above the engine bay. Pay close attention to the supports that run front to back that the surge tank brackets bolt to. If they are rusted out, look out! If they show signs of fresh paint/repair be weary!
Next check the front compartment under the front electrical panel (outside under drivers window!)
If it's rusted out completely, again look out! (while in this area check front electrical panel area! If it's really nasty and scary looking with cut. loose or bare wires everywhere. MOVE ON NOW FIND anonther bus!)
Place #4 is not so much about rust as stress cracking, and is hard to check without getting at least part way under both sides of the engine cradle! Pay close attention to the area where the engine cradle meets up and is mounted to the bulk head! If you see major rust or cracks here, don't walk away, "RUN, RUN FOREST RUN!" Also check the rest of the engine cradle for cracks, if there are any it can be welded, just means more time & work.

Last even though you could move it forward and backward, does not mean there is not a low air or leaking air problem (bags, valves!)

In today's low market I'd offer $3000.00 or less! You can always go up, hard to go back down!
FWIW!

Keep in mind "I know nothing. I am merely a messenger!"
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #18 on: October 30, 2009, 05:50:55 PM »

OH yeah if ya didn't like the name "Ilean" you could maybe use "Lean'a"
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
Greg Smith
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« Reply #19 on: October 30, 2009, 07:57:27 PM »

If it's a Japanese bus, you can call it "Irene"

Greg
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philiptompkjns
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« Reply #20 on: October 30, 2009, 08:23:16 PM »

Philip,
I don't know much about MCI's or buses in general. But first off just because it's a 102" wide does not make it a pot o' gold!
OK lets start with the not airing up on one side! OK there are any # of reasons it might not air up. OK could be as mentioned one or both bags, leveling valves, plugged line (doubtful!), or the most likely rusted out air beams! (air beams are the big boxy looking things over the bags many people confuse as "the frame."
That said even if it is the air beams, it ain't the end of the world! Just lots $ and time to repair. But still better yet (still $ & time) but less of each, replace with rolling lobe airbags! (good ride and fixed for good!) Of course still less $ and about the same amount of time is "plating the bags." Which is where a special block off plate is mounted between the air beam and airbag and the air goes into the bag thru the plate! OK fix, but harsher ride (do to the low air volume of the small bags), and the plates do eventually wear down and start leaking!
OK we got that out of the way!

Now for rust 4 main areas to look! In rear luggage bay rear wall near bulkhead! If it's rusted through (holes you can see thru) or has fresh paint (like it was just repaired), look farther!
OK well look farther anyway! Check in the blower area above the engine bay. Pay close attention to the supports that run front to back that the surge tank brackets bolt to. If they are rusted out, look out! If they show signs of fresh paint/repair be weary!
Next check the front compartment under the front electrical panel (outside under drivers window!)
If it's rusted out completely, again look out! (while in this area check front electrical panel area! If it's really nasty and scary looking with cut. loose or bare wires everywhere. MOVE ON NOW FIND anonther bus!)
Place #4 is not so much about rust as stress cracking, and is hard to check without getting at least part way under both sides of the engine cradle! Pay close attention to the area where the engine cradle meets up and is mounted to the bulk head! If you see major rust or cracks here, don't walk away, "RUN, RUN FOREST RUN!" Also check the rest of the engine cradle for cracks, if there are any it can be welded, just means more time & work.

Last even though you could move it forward and backward, does not mean there is not a low air or leaking air problem (bags, valves!)

In today's low market I'd offer $3000.00 or less! You can always go up, hard to go back down!
FWIW!

Keep in mind "I know nothing. I am merely a messenger!"
Grin  BK  Grin
Wow, a lot of info in there.

First off the bus is not a total rust bucket. none of the baggage compartment areas were rusted though.  The engine cradle  did  not look bad either.
I did not check the electrical panel yet though, thanks  for the heads up on that one.

I did not know about the air beams though.  I should  look at them  closely and see if air  is escaping them.
Also, if there is a serious air leak in the bags/beams, wouldn't the leak not allow the brakes to release? 
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1990 102a3... Just got started, don't  know  what I'm doing.
philiptompkjns
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« Reply #21 on: October 30, 2009, 08:35:13 PM »

also, assuming worst case scenario, what do the parts cost to replace an air  beam?
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1990 102a3... Just got started, don't  know  what I'm doing.
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #22 on: October 31, 2009, 12:01:42 AM »

Quote from: philiptompkjns
Wow, a lot of info in there.

First off the bus is not a total rust bucket. none of the baggage compartment areas were rusted though.  The engine cradle  did  not look bad either.
I did not check the electrical panel yet though, thanks  for the heads up on that one.

I did not know about the air beams though.  I should  look at them  closely and see if air  is escaping them.
Also, if there is a serious air leak in the bags/beams, wouldn't the leak not allow the brakes to release? 

OK Philip,
First I wasn't trying to imply the bus was a "rust bucket", but sometimes even when they are unsuspecting buyers learn a hard lesson.

OK the place I am referring to in the luggage bay is the back wall not the floor, but rather close to where they meet.
Next Remember to open the compartment above the engine compartment where the squirrel cage blowers for the radiators are. There will be 2 metal bars (about 1.5" wide) that run front back and hold the surge tank in place. These are very often rusted bad.
Now the airbeam? NO the air systems operate off different tanks and the brakes are off the first tanks in the system, and the suspension is off the last! Therefore the air is filling the tanks that the brakes operate off before any others! (sorta a safety thing)
Also sometimes the air beams are leaking in a place where you normally wouldn't hear them leak, especilly if it is running! FWIW Grin
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #23 on: October 31, 2009, 12:03:29 AM »

also, assuming worst case scenario, what do the parts cost to replace an air  beam?

Trust me you don't want to replace an air beam! But rather bypass it and the best way off doing that is the rolling lobe air bags! Grin 
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
robertglines1
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« Reply #24 on: October 31, 2009, 05:22:03 AM »

  Like BK said go to the self contained air bags. I did and really didn't notice a difference ( MCI- 8)Is air pressure coming up on the dash gauge to 120 lb range?..My MCI 8 air beamed leaked and that's what I did..Tires over 10 yrs old?  Set a value to all then make a decision. As far as the bath room if it just you fine but put a lady in the mix forget it!!!When all of the advice comes in and your on the way to becoming insane like the rest do it your way...Buses are good.....
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Bob@Judy  98 XLE prevost with 3 slides --Home done---last one! SW INdiana
philiptompkjns
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« Reply #25 on: October 31, 2009, 07:46:53 AM »

 Like BK said go to the self contained air bags. I did and really didn't notice a difference ( MCI- 8)Is air pressure coming up on the dash gauge to 120 lb range?..My MCI 8 air beamed leaked and that's what I did..Tires over 10 yrs old?  Set a value to all then make a decision. As far as the bath room if it just you fine but put a lady in the mix forget it!!!When all of the advice comes in and your on the way to becoming insane like the rest do it your way...Buses are good.....
no, the air pressure is  only coming up to 90 psi.

And I've read a lot of information  on there about MC-8/9 suspension upgrades  and parts, are the 102a3's parts (air bags, rolling lobe kits, block off plates) interchangeable with the MC-9?
« Last Edit: October 31, 2009, 08:25:09 AM by philiptompkjns » Logged

1990 102a3... Just got started, don't  know  what I'm doing.
robertglines1
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« Reply #26 on: October 31, 2009, 08:30:51 AM »

There are several places to look for a solution when you can't hear air leak ..If the rest of the coach is what you want go for it .To replace air bags with rolling lobs about 3 to 350 for both. leveling control valve under 50 if that's the problem.. I would not let this be the killer of a deal but would use it for leverage. maybe couple of thousand off check tire age tires run from 400 to 650 each. My rule is 4yrs when I buy not to be run for a total of 10 years from mfg date..Big topic of discussion.....BK knows about engine cradle.He has one with the problem very expensive fix.
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Bob@Judy  98 XLE prevost with 3 slides --Home done---last one! SW INdiana
belfert
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« Reply #27 on: October 31, 2009, 04:44:16 PM »

no, the air pressure is  only coming up to 90 psi.

90 PSI is pretty low.  Could be a major leak somewhere, or it could be something easy like the compressor governor or air tanks that haven't been drained.  I would lean towards a leak.

A major leak off of the suspension/accessory tank should still allow the brakes to operate.  There is a pressure protection valve or similiar that cuts that suspension/accessory tank from the main air system at a certain PSI so a leak there won't kill the brakes.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #28 on: October 31, 2009, 07:20:28 PM »

As noted, there's a big leak in the auxiliary, your listing suspension being the obvious culprit.

Over the model years, the pressure protection valve settings have crept up.

Your 90 lbs sounds right for the conditions you describe.

Broken/worn out mechanicals can be repaired, rust is like cancer and must be cut out to make it go away.

As noted, you are in a good bargaining position, as long as it is cancer free....

happy coaching!
buswarrior

 
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Frozen North, Greater Toronto Area
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #29 on: November 01, 2009, 07:56:24 AM »

Yes the air suspension hogs the air until it reaches 90 PSI once it has the suspension filled to the required amount then the rest if the system and gauges go on up from there!
FWIW Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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