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Author Topic: Bus Conversions in campgrounds  (Read 4173 times)
Handyjim
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« on: February 28, 2010, 08:33:47 PM »

Ok.  So I buy a bus and convert it.  What restrictions will I face finding a campground?  I know many CGs limit by age of vehicle, but from the reading I've done, it seems that many don't want busses, unless in the Prevost class. Now, I'm not doing a hippy bus, but I'd like something like a 102D3, or an MC9 if I can't afford the former. I'm not looking at Palm Springs resorts, which I know from experience are picky.  But how about the mid-line type CGs?  Obviously with the kind of bus I'm envisioning, it will be a classy conversion.  But to do the job, and then only be able to stay on BLM land won't cut it with my DW. Smiley
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JCorey
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« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2010, 08:54:55 PM »

Hi Jim, Christi and I manage WHR camp ground and they welcome all buses.
http://www.westernhorizonstoday.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=126&Itemid=814/whr/index.htm
M&C  Grin
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Handyjim
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« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2010, 09:01:40 PM »

Yes.  But you have a higher level of understanding, and an appreciation for the finer things in life.  Cheesy
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JCorey
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« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2010, 09:11:56 PM »

For the most part you shouldn't have a problem. Most of your average "Mom and Pop" spots need to fill as many spaces as possible. However; I did get rejected in Calf. at one ritzy campground after they saw my wheezy. They immediately were "All booked up" even though it was late and I could clearly see otherwise. I will admit that my rig would have made most there think the neighborhood was going to pot. I guess it was there way of not trying to hurt my feelings so I somewhat accepted it. I only was there out of desperation and normally only camp in State or National type parks. The adjustment I have to make is that where I live it's like camping everyday, except in a house, because I cannot see my neighbors. Most commercial campgrounds look like parking lots with trees and it gets to cozy when I can see into others setups. I would guess if you convert and polish up a nice Prevost it is a non-issue.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2010, 09:54:01 AM by Barn Owl » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2010, 09:31:59 PM »

We found that KOA's policy is up to the individual owners.  KOA itself doesn't have a problem but some owners do.  Also, we found that calling ahead does not always help.  I have called places and explained that we are a bus conversion but apparently many times people really don't understand what a bus conversion is.  If there is any question, ask for the manager and explain what your bus is.  We were even asked once if we had a chimney coming out a window or the roof.
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« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2010, 10:50:48 PM »

When I call a campground for reservation, I explain I have a 40ft motorhome.  If they ask about age, I tell them the truth, and the only time I've had to have it inspected before paying was a semi permanent, but giant RV park in Mesa, Az.  The only inconvenience to this was that the guy inspecting my bus took so long since he was showing it to his buddies (from the outside) since he was so impressed with it.  If you have your bus painted well, and it looks sharp, and it isn't leaking a bunch of oil (which can be a challenge with Detroits), you shouldn't have any problems.  Personally-I usually just don't stay at stuffy RV resorts-if they have these restrictions.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2010, 10:59:05 PM »

Good point Jim. Once bitten!  Grin M&C
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« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2010, 02:50:22 AM »

If you have your bus painted well, and it looks sharp, and it isn't leaking a bunch of oil (which can be a challenge with Detroits), you shouldn't have any problems.  Personally-I usually just don't stay at stuffy RV resorts-if they have these restrictions.  Good Luck, TomC
[/quote]

Aw C'mon, give it a rest.  I have a Detroit and it doesn't leak any more than any other brand.

BCO
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cody
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« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2010, 04:56:08 AM »

We have never been turned away from a truckstop lol (or a campground) lol I did get asked not once but twice if we had anyone famous on board, I told them I could get fired for saying but I whispered the Swedish Bikini Team and they let us right in lol.
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« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2010, 05:23:48 AM »

  The best way around is to stick a badge/logo, (prestigious(Winnebago,south-wind,fleet-wood,wanderlodge) on the side, when ask= You point the finger to the badge/logo.
      wrench
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« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2010, 05:28:21 AM »

21 years, 48 states, Canada and lots of Mexico we have never been turned down because of any reason.  I have stayed at a few that I should have truned down. 
Jack
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« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2010, 05:42:09 AM »

Haven't been turned down for bus but length is sometimes a question...have on special occasions (more than 3)had special treatment...if there is a 10 yr limit in camp ground just tell them the year you built it(only came across it once)most sticks and staples are pretty well ......after 10 years..really don't think it is a problem....MCi 8 now 2 prevost home done
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« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2010, 07:17:37 AM »

BoxcarOkie- if yours doesn't leak much, your very lucky in that you had a meticulous mechanic rebuild your engine.  Detroit 2 strokes are notorious for leaking, and mine is no exception.  Just when I think I got all the leaks taken care of, another appears.  The only real way to take care of them is to disassemble the engine and reseal with new gaskets. Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
cody
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« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2010, 07:19:45 AM »

Or paint it yellow lol.
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« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2010, 07:56:53 AM »

What Jack said - only 6 years.  I expect there are places that would turn us away but they aren't the kind of places we want to stay at.  There are LOTS of spots to choose from, private and public.  Specifically to the OP's question about "mid line" campgrounds - there will be more of them that will accept you than reject you.  Obviously "mid line" is a subjective term but I would guess that less than 20% of the total RV sites in North America ar in parks that would refuse entry to anyone.
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« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2010, 08:19:10 AM »

  Twenty years ago we got turned away at a KOA. We were at another campground and resting comfortably within minutes. The wife and I discussed  the situation and decided never to ask KOA to compromise their standards again. There are lots of other places that would accept our money with out reservation  Wink...Cable
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Sofar Sogood
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« Reply #16 on: March 01, 2010, 09:51:38 AM »

If your rig looks like it is in need of major maintenance won't be able to leave without doing that work, that may cause problems.

If your rig looks well cared for, 'decent' (to the campground) , & fits in with the clientele they are seeking, no problem.

You wouldn't go to the yacht club & expect to be seated in the formal dining room if you were wearing casual clothes, would 'ya?

I stayed at one campground that I wish they had denied a 4104 . . . Damn LOUD generator with lousy speed control (randomly tried to stall out but would finally catch with a bang & go back to a screaming 3800 rpm) that ran all night because their shore cord had bigger problems than their p.o.s. generator.
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« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2010, 09:59:46 AM »

Quote
I have stayed at a few that I should have turned down.

More truth in that line than two pages of posts combined! Wish I had said it......
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johns4104s
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« Reply #18 on: March 01, 2010, 12:07:40 PM »

26 years busing and like Cody, we have never been turned away. 26 years busin.

John
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Eric
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« Reply #19 on: March 01, 2010, 05:24:54 PM »

The wife and I work for KOA corprate and they have no problems with busses. Individual franchises may think differently most think of a bus as a skoolie...as said previously just refer to it as a motorhome and they will know no difference!
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Linda-4104-FL
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« Reply #20 on: March 01, 2010, 05:30:06 PM »

We've had our bus 17 years.  Have traveled five to six months at a time over the whole country for the last six summers.  Have never been turned away, but we were looked over closely once (in Las Vegas).  We tend to avoid KOAs and fancy resort places as they are generally over-priced, but we don't stay in ratty places either.  Our 4104 isn't fancy, but we try not to have peeling paint, etc.  So far, so good.
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« Reply #21 on: March 01, 2010, 06:26:08 PM »

Never had a problem in 55,000 mi and four years. When I call ahead for space I always say a 35' coach, never use the word bus.

Don't think I would have ever had a problem anyway, RV parks are not so choosy these days. Some places the old 4104 even brought quite a few compliments and wonder at a 56 year old vehicle still on the road.

If "Resort" is in the name of an RV park forget it. This means noses in the air and high prices.
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« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2010, 08:23:39 PM »

NEVER call ahead and try to explain you have a  "bus conversion" you have a 40 foot motor home. Everyone is proud of thier bus, but you say bus conversion thinking self produced work of art, thousands or hours and  $$$ and they are thinking Charlie Manson and family, dayglo orange peace signs sprayed on the side, maybe a moose head duct taped to the front grill. I know it is demeaning but just ask for a space for a 40 foot motor home. IF you get turned down when you get there (probably never) you will have a great story to tell.  JIm
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« Reply #23 on: March 02, 2010, 02:32:37 AM »

The bus has never got me kicked out ......... but I may have gotten the bus kicked out once ........ or twice ..........  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #24 on: March 02, 2010, 04:00:40 AM »

BoxcarOkie- if yours doesn't leak much, your very lucky in that you had a meticulous mechanic rebuild your engine.  Detroit 2 strokes are notorious for leaking, and mine is no exception.  Just when I think I got all the leaks taken care of, another appears.  The only real way to take care of them is to disassemble the engine and reseal with new gaskets. Good Luck, TomC

Thanks for the reply, mine leaks a little (not a whole lot, but enuff to keep some cardboard under it) but so do my three Chevies and my wife's toaster oven.  I just get a little tired of people running down the product, mine has served me well, took me many a mile and I suppose a mile or two down the road in the future, and I actually expect it to be trouble free. 

It has some 44K on it since the out of frame, and it is doing the job, I cannot complain.  It passes everything on the road except a truck-stop, kinda likes the fuel.  It is a PIG when it comes to fuel.

But I digress sorry.

Last year in Pismo Beach California this guy in a campground gave me a one page questionnaire to fill out BEFORE space rental, when I asked him about it he said, "It is California law, everyone fills them out." 

So I replied, "Well, I am from Oklahoma and we don't."

I didn't get the space ...  Ask me if I care.

BCO

BCO
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cody
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« Reply #25 on: March 02, 2010, 04:10:07 AM »

I've seen some strange laws, now if someone from california will tell us if it is the law or not, I'm suspecting it to be a tool to clear those undesirable bus trash type peoples off the face of the earth before the younguns get tainted by their commie view points, next thing you know they'll all be burning their draft cards or their bras, huh? *perk* what were we talking about?
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« Reply #26 on: March 02, 2010, 08:01:38 AM »

I stayed in two campgrounds last year in Pismo Beach and n ever was asked to fill out any questionair.It sounds like it was just that one place.What campground was it?.We also stayed in several parks up and down the coast without filling out any questionnaire.
   Don
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« Reply #27 on: March 02, 2010, 02:42:01 PM »

For a number of years we've stayed in a very nice RV park in San Diego and one in N CA and have never had to fill out such a form. Sounds like bull to me!
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« Reply #28 on: March 02, 2010, 07:19:59 PM »

Gus, we've been in a few places with the "Resort" label -- made us look around and say, "huh?  This is a resort?"  We could only guess it made them feel better about their campground.  But you're right.... oftentimes that label does suggest to us that we just keep moving and not aggravate ourselves, LOL. Cool Grin
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Handyjim
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« Reply #29 on: March 02, 2010, 09:45:51 PM »

Thanks for all the comments. Now all I need is a bus, and a long weekend to do the conversion. Roll Eyes
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JCorey
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« Reply #30 on: March 02, 2010, 10:13:02 PM »

I live in L.A. and have NEVER had to fill out any forms up and beyond just normal check in stuff-like at motels.  I think that campsite was full of it.  Would really like to know which campsite it is so we can stay far away from it!  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #31 on: March 03, 2010, 04:22:56 PM »

We've stayed at a lot of campgrounds and Kampgrounds in the last few years.  KOA's haven't usually been a problem, although i'd stay away from Wapakoneta, OH.  as someone already said, anyone too classy for my bus to camp there, is too snooty for me to want to be there.  probably no fun there anyway.  i'm in a bus on the road to relax, not sweat over whether my sandals are shiny enough for the camp office.

I always tell folks i've got an Eagle Motorcoach, 40 ft. and i'm a bad driver, so i want big rig friendly.  Never been turned away so far.  even after we showed up and proved what i had said.

Don't avoid a bus, avoid the 5-10% of campgrounds that might give you grief.
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