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Author Topic: How to regain the motivation to go on?  (Read 5207 times)
Len Silva
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« Reply #30 on: July 26, 2006, 02:13:30 PM »

I really wonder how many more of you there are out there.
I have been following the boards for several years and a lot of members have just dropped out of sight. We know they were not finished with their conversion but they just quit posting. I strongly suspect that they just gave up but were unable to come on the board and admit that they were quitting or were just burnt out on the project or it was too big or whatever the reason. It would be extremely difficult to do.
Richard

I'm one of them!  We just bought a Vogue Motor home because I just didn't have it in me to get back out there.  In my case, the bus has languished for almost five years with little done to it.  I'm still trying to figure if I'll ever get back to it.  It's just taking up space in the shop but not really costing me anything so, we'll see.

In my case, I'm pretty much working alone, kind of isolated out in the country and my wife would love to go camping in it but has no interest in working on it.

A few months ago I looked at a conversion for sale in Orlando and there were four or five buddies all working on each other's busses and keeping the juices flowing.  That seems like it would be a great motivator if your lucky enough to have real (not virtual) bussing buddies.

Don't get me wrong, all of you "virtual buddies" are a great help.

Len
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« Reply #31 on: July 26, 2006, 07:46:18 PM »

Hang in there Brian.... I had to force myself to "get-'er-done"... as Nick would say!!! I had no realistic idea as to how big of a project that converting a bus would be and how expensive….dam!! I had the money but I am self employed and not retired. I started working from 6 am to 3 pm on my business and from 4pm to 10pm every weekday and from 8 am to 6pm on the weekends …I did this for 2 yrs without a break. The first year I got the bus stripped, raised the roof 8”, new floor, rewired for 12V system, new dash,  tilt telescopic steering, skin sides, RV windows and caps…as well as a new silver 8V92TA and go through the mech. At the end of the first year I had a steel tent. The second year I did the interior and house systems .. and I was 90% done in 2 yrs to the week of when I bought the bus.

I was the same as you Brian…this was not a hobby I wanted to get it done as fast as I could and as nice as I could (if I didn’t, I might be looking for a new wife) I found a local body guy that was willing to work for cash 2 nights during the week (from 7pm to 10 pm) and work all day Saturday (8am to 6pm), this speeded the process up considerable. On the interior I hired a cabinetmaker to make the cabinets and install them. I did all the work on the walls, dropped ceiling, wiring etc.
 
I guess what I am saying is, I had to force myself to work these kind of hours to get the job done. It was rewarding, frustrating, depressing, exhilarating and a joy now that it’s 90% done and it will remain 90% done for a couple of years …I need the time away from the conversion work and just get and enjoy it for awhile.

 So hang in there Brian … and keep your schedules flexible and if you really want to "get-er-done" you will find a way.

My pride and joy if you haven’t seen it
 
http://www.busconversions.com/bbs/index.php?topic=73.90

Ron
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belfert
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« Reply #32 on: July 26, 2006, 08:41:19 PM »

My dad did come over this evening and we got one more panel installed today.  Only 11 more to go.  My goal is to do three more on Saturday if we can stand the heat that long.  I don't know if I can get help Sunday or not yet.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #33 on: July 26, 2006, 10:24:07 PM »

Please feel free to delete this post - but IMHO this thread needs to be part of the "get started" info - it's probably the most cathartic thread I've ever read - it's kinda definitive of a whole group of people - I'm utterly impressed - Thanks for sharing guys/gals -
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« Reply #34 on: July 27, 2006, 04:57:52 AM »

Ron, I suspect that if you had put the time in working at your business, instead of working on the bus, you could have purchased a conversion already completed and been money ahead. Also you could have been using it for the two or three years time it took to get yours ready to use.

The reason I say this is that is exactly the route I took. I looked for a couple of years until I found a conversion that was already done and close to what my wife and I wanted. I then purchased it using my home as collateral for the loan. I then put in more hours at work to pay the payments and still had time to travel a lot.
Just another way to get er done!
Richard


Hang in there Brian.... I had to force myself to "get-'er-done"... as Nick would say!!! I had no realistic idea as to how big of a project that converting a bus would be and how expensive….dam!! I had the money but I am self employed and not retired. I started working from 6 am to 3 pm on my business and from 4pm to 10pm every weekday and from 8 am to 6pm on the weekends …I did this for 2 yrs without a break. The first year I got the bus stripped, raised the roof 8”, new floor, rewired for 12V system, new dash,  tilt telescopic steering, skin sides, RV windows and caps…as well as a new silver 8V92TA and go through the mech. At the end of the first year I had a steel tent. The second year I did the interior and house systems .. and I was 90% done in 2 yrs to the week of when I bought the bus.

I was the same as you Brian…this was not a hobby I wanted to get it done as fast as I could and as nice as I could (if I didn’t, I might be looking for a new wife) I found a local body guy that was willing to work for cash 2 nights during the week (from 7pm to 10 pm) and work all day Saturday (8am to 6pm), this speeded the process up considerable. On the interior I hired a cabinetmaker to make the cabinets and install them. I did all the work on the walls, dropped ceiling, wiring etc.
 
I guess what I am saying is, I had to force myself to work these kind of hours to get the job done. It was rewarding, frustrating, depressing, exhilarating and a joy now that it’s 90% done and it will remain 90% done for a couple of years …I need the time away from the conversion work and just get and enjoy it for awhile.

 So hang in there Brian … and keep your schedules flexible and if you really want to "get-er-done" you will find a way.

My pride and joy if you haven’t seen it
 
http://http://www.busconversions.com/bbs/index.php?topic=73.90

Ron

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« Reply #35 on: July 27, 2006, 09:27:08 AM »

Don't know about you guys, but I'm motivated once again !!!  Reading all the suggestions and personal stories has me back "up" for another swing at it.

Apparently we all get down at times over this bus conversion fetish.  Knowing that I'm not alone in this soup, is in itself, rather uplifting.  Misery loves company?  Whatever ...  Grin

We all have slightly different stories of how we got to this point, but in composite, I see we are all soooo ... much alike.  I suppose in a perfect world we would all live on the same city block, thus be able to help each other out in times of stress.  This board is the next best thing.

Out I go to do something on the bus ... anything ... just so I can stand back and marvel at how insanely talented I am.   Roll Eyes
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« Reply #36 on: July 27, 2006, 09:39:49 AM »

Nah.. I think that IF we all lived too close to each other there would be running gun battles, turf wars
and lots of fighting going on all the time over who did it their way and who did it better.....

It's nice to visit and move on. Everyone would be upset for some silly reason over some silliness....

Bus Nuts are a very wierd and independent lot. Too much testosterone in one place for very long is
not a good thing... Usually.... Grin
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« Reply #37 on: July 27, 2006, 09:59:22 AM »

Richard ...you are probably right. But the thing is, we as humans like to fool ourselves into thinking that it won’t cost as much or take as long …we probably all do it and that’s the trap. By the time we realize that it’s going take way more of time & money than we thought, we have way to much into it to back out and quit. I for one am not a quitter.

Ron
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« Reply #38 on: July 27, 2006, 11:14:14 AM »

Motivation is not always the problem.  Sometimes the desire to get it done doesn't line up with time constraints and financial concerns.  I found myself with more desire and motivation than time and money.  When the money ran short, I would just go out and sit on the bus, and plan what I would do with the next 2 or three thousand dollars my wife would alot me! 

I'm with Richard.  My next one will be complete, and will only need me to update the interior or slap a little paint.  No more bare bones, start from scratch with nothing but a shell for me.  I'm not that good of a mechanic/engineer/carpenter like most folks on this board. But I can sling the hell out of a paint brush!

Jimmy Roll Eyes
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« Reply #39 on: July 27, 2006, 11:39:23 AM »

Richard ...you are probably right. But the thing is, we as humans like to fool ourselves into thinking that it won’t cost as much or take as long …we probably all do it and that’s the trap. By the time we realize that it’s going take way more of time & money than we thought, we have way to much into it to back out and quit. I for one am not a quitter.

Ron


Also, it's easier to come up with a little money now and then than a boat load all at once.  If a conversion takes 50K over 5 years, that's easier than 50K all at once, unless you finance.  Personally, I don't finance depreaciating assets.  That means cars, buses, trucks, boats...Pretty much everything but real estate.  If I can't pay cash then I can't afford it.  Apply that to a bus conversion....I can't afford a finished bus because I can't lay my hands on that much cash, but I can lay my hands a few grand every now and then to put into the conversion.  I use 50K as a nice round figure, but when I was looking I didn't see anything under 100K that didn't need to be completely redone, and if I'm going that far, I'll buy a shell and start from scratch.

Ross
 
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Jeremy
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« Reply #40 on: July 27, 2006, 11:41:43 AM »

"Ron, I suspect that if you had put the time in working at your business, instead of working on the bus, you could have purchased a conversion already completed and been money ahead. Also you could have been using it for the two or three years time it took to get yours ready to use."

My Dad always says stuff like that, and it's almost certainly true, but to my mind at least it completely misses the point.

These projects are about the journey as well as the destination - buying a completed project from someone else may be financially more sensible, but when it come to the important things in life (inner-satisfaction, self-belief, personal achievement etc) it simply cannot compare with the option of taking on a big task, doing all the work yourself and finally being able to stand back from the end result and say 'that's mine!'

These are BIG projects though - probably second only to building you own house. 98% of people simply don't have the vision or application (or time, space, skills), to see a project like this to fruition. I would bet every person on this forum that has successfully completed such a project had previously done similar but smaller projects (restoring cars etc), and so had an inkling at least of what was likely to be involved. Aside from things like health or family proplems, projects usually fail either because their owners were wearing the rose-tinted spectacles of inexperience, or because they rushed into the project on a whim (a whim in this case being anything less than two years of research and planning).

For people who work for themselves (like me - www.magazineexchange.co.uk), they opportunity-cost of your time can make the project VERY expensive - you just have to work out how much time / money you can justify spending. Personally I don't use the highly structured, time-managed approach mentined above as, to me, it removes the fun and makes your hobby seem too much like work.

The various motivational tips and techniques mentioned above are all good - the only thing I would add is to keep a photo-albumn of snaps taken during the project (you're probably doing that anyway). When depression begins to set in, get the albumn off the shelf one evening and look through it. I guarentee you will be amazed when you realise how much you have already acheived and how far you have come, and that will motivate you to take the next step on the journey

Jeremy
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« Reply #41 on: July 27, 2006, 02:23:30 PM »

Brian - your first mistake is having a "schedule".  Life intervenes - there's always something that happens that delays schedules.  Eddie and I bought the bus 4 years ago - we were going to have it completed in 1 year - and I won't tell you how much he said the conversion would cost - but trust me we are double that right now and not finished.  Unfortunately, family health issues, and my own health issues prohibited us from completing it in one year.  We also own a home and there always seems to be something breaking or needing updating which takes time away from working on the bus.  When he originally brought it home there was a lot of work to be done before we could even begin the build.  We took out the windows, he had welding to do because of structural problems, then he ripped out the floor and insulated and plywooded the whole thing.  When the actual room building began, that's when I saw his vision. (We actually decided on a floor plan and have stuck with it.)  It motivated me.  I started helping installing flooring, staining and varnishing the wood, etc., etc.  But I'm also a full-time student, and so when I have to study for a test, I have to study for a test, and the bus has to wait.  Last week Eddie and our son (9 yrs. old)  went to Maine to get some paint work done on the bus.  (I had to go to school!)  They stayed in the bus - now all he wants to do is use the bus - while all I want to do is finish the bus.  Ironic, isn't it?  By the way - for all of you guys who bought a sticks and staples to go camping in while working on your bus - I've been trying to sell mine so we can invest the money in our bus.  Neither one of us has any desire to use the thing since partially done, we think our bus is so much nicer!!  It drives nicer, doesn't sway around, is more comfortable to stay in, and feels safer overall.  So from a chic who's cracking the whip on her husband to get our bus done - first off, don't set schedules, they don't work.  Second off, it's supposed to be an enjoyable experience to make your bus - your bus - not what some big production company makes an RV - this is a reflection of you.  Relax - life always throws you curves - nothing is ever done when you want, or costs what you want - that's life.  So just try to enjoy it. Cheesy Wink Sue-NJ
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« Reply #42 on: July 27, 2006, 03:52:39 PM »

Brian,

Well, I guess I'll chime in with my $.02 worth... Just finished skinning my sides in last weekend and got my RV windows installed. It makes a BIG difference, feels & looks like a motorhome now - my wife and I just stand there in the drive and stare at our creation!  Grin Get those sides finished and you will renew your motivation, I did and I've been at this for 10 mo and like all the other posters said probably years to go. I too can get overwhelmed but not 'blue tarping' the coach and having to close the windows when it rains is a joy and gives you some sense of completion in the big picture. Hang in there, it gets better.  Smiley

Kurt
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« Reply #43 on: July 28, 2006, 02:10:24 PM »

<snip>
These projects are about the journey as well as the destination - buying a completed project from someone else may be financially more sensible, but when it come to the important things in life (inner-satisfaction, self-belief, personal achievement etc) it simply cannot compare with the option of taking on a big task, doing all the work yourself and finally being able to stand back from the end result and say 'that's mine!'
<snip>

Exactly right Jeremy.  I find it relaxing and challenging at the same time.  There are times when I don't want to tackle the next step or am impatient to get it done, but most of the time it is the journey, the chance to create, and the chance to learn new skills or resurrect old ones that makes it fun.

Craig - MC7 Oregon
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Craig MC7 - Oregon USA
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