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Author Topic: New to the forum, introduction and some questions! (warning: lots of pictures)  (Read 11668 times)
divinerightstrip
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1990 Le Mirage XL


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« on: March 01, 2010, 02:18:36 PM »

For sale....


SOLD!!!!!

...

...

...

Uh oh, now I've really done it!

I bought "Urge" and had him towed home on April 1st, 2009. That should have been indication #1 that things were going to get crazier, and that I would be laughing at myself and my insanity at least daily from that moment on...



Anyhow, step #1 was to get rid of all of these seats. Between work, school, general day to day craziness and accumulating all of the appropriate tools, I managed to pull most of the seats out with the help of some friends.




Then I had to figure out what on earth to do with all of these seats. I didn't have a dumpster, or a trash can large enough to toss them into, so I figured, "what the heck!" I'll try to sell the darn things. Turns out, there's quite a market for bus seats. I posted them up on Craig's List and within a few days and a few phone calls, I had a couple eager buyers show up and pay me to get rid of my seats. Excellent.
I ended up making back all of the money that I spent on towing the bus.



One guy drove up all the way from New York city, loaded a bunch of the seats into his sketchy, windowless van, handed me a wad of rolled up dirty bills, and then hopped back into the van and drove off, back down to the city in time for his 3rd shift job? I counted the bills for a second time after he took off... yep he ended up overpaying me... hmm. I hope he doesn't ever come back to reclaim that 20 bucks.

The second guy (above pic) had just bought his gasser Ford bus van, and was completely envious of my "Urge". "I wish I could afford a bus like yours" he told me over and over, "but this one was a real bargain, this one was a reeeeeeal bargain!"
"Oh yeah?" I asked, "Where'd ya find it?"
"It used to be a party bus." he told me, "the stripper pole is still in it." he was very excited to show me. I gingerly peered inside, making sure not to touch anything. "Fifteen hundred bucks!" he said.
"Not bad!" I told him, "and mine doesn't run yet, so I'm sure you wouldn't want it."
"Not for the money I'm sure you paid for it!" he said, and took off. It took all of my willpower to keep my mouth shut. I didn't want to sound like a jerk. Smiley


After all of the seats were out of the bus (and out of my life!!), I noticed that the floor in the rear of the bus had a slight sponginess to it.
"What's going on here?"
So I decided to rip up the floor.

Prevost owners: tell me if you've also experienced this!
What had happened was, there were two thin sheets of stainless steel over both wheel wells. After thousand and thousands and thousands of miles of rocks from the road being shot up and hitting against the thin metal, enough small holes had punctured through, that water started collecting and rotting through the wood and the glue. The result was some really lovely white substance oozing between the pieces of flooring.



Mmmmm.... yummy. Makes you want to lick it.




So, eventually we got all of the lovely rotting wood and steel up and out of the bus.

Pretty neat: I got a good look at the frame. There's not much to the bus!



(whoa air bag is larger than my head!)

SO.
Where am I going with all of this.

I was trying to figure out what to put down as the new floor in the bus. I decided that I didn't want the stainless there anymore, because then the same thing would just happen again. And sure it was fun, but I don't want to mess around with rotting wood anymore. Once was enough. So, I got some 3/4" Marine ply, and painted it, and fastened it down.


Alright, now what?
Now it's in my bus. I am thinking though, that I am going to take it up again and seal it with some type of undercoating like Rhino liner or truck bed liner of some sort.
Does anyone have some good suggestions or info for me?
As far as the interior goes, what should I put down for insulation? Then what on top of that?

In some parts of the bus, I'd like to put down some carpet. In other parts of the bus (kitchen and bathroom) I'd like to do some tiling.
Has anyone had any experience with flexible grout? (http://starquartz.com/grout.html)

Thanks in advance for any feedback!
-Anja
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belfert
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« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2010, 04:07:06 PM »

I used two part epoxy paint to paint the bottom of my plywood when I replaced the floor.  I am lucky enough to live near a place that only sells/installs epoxy paint.  They had various half used cans they gave me a deal on.  The stuff doesn't go bad as it is two parts.  It seals like you wouldn't believe.

I don't know why you don't install some metal over the wheel wells.  It is unlikely you would ever drive it enough to wear through the metal again.  You could use a little better grade of stainless and/or use stainless that is thicker.  The whole point of the metal is so the plywood isn't exposed to water.  As it is now the plywood will be exposed to water any time it rains on the road.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
robertglines1
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« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2010, 04:16:52 PM »

Metal was also used to help stop tire or brake fire before it gets in to coach...I know it works the xl I just bought would have been a pile of melted metal without it...
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Bob@Judy  98 XLE prevost with 3 slides --Home done---last one! SW INdiana
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« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2010, 04:19:15 PM »

I would put some kind of metal back in over the wheels!!!!!!! The wear / corrosion that you speak of will sand the plywood down faster than the metal.

Good luck John
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kyle4501
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« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2010, 04:21:49 PM »

Good start you have there.
Why not put some steel back? If you go with a little thicker metal, you'd have no worries.  Grin
If you rhino line the tire side, you'd be able to reapply it as needed.
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robertglines1
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« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2010, 04:34:10 PM »

the floor problem is not unusual...I mentioned before about the fire problem in this area above tires please take this to heart as it is the biggest problem for a bus disaster...Foam insulation is best if you use board type instead of spray on seal joints with foam in can...I have done one like yours (89 prevost Xl) with two slides..Any thing I can help with please ask...Bob
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Bob@Judy  98 XLE prevost with 3 slides --Home done---last one! SW INdiana
expressbus
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« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2010, 04:45:45 PM »

Anja,

OK, forget the technical advice. I want to know who the cutie is behind the steering wheel in the first picture. Surely you did ot think you could simply slip that pretty lady past this crowd with someone raising a question. I just surprise dit took so long.

OK, put the metal (heavier gauge) back over the drive and tags. I'd check on the other side and give it the same treatment. After all, you don't want to set up conditions that might just make an ash of yourself!
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Will Garner, Jr
Southern Pines, NC
1991 Prevost Conversion by Country Coach
wildbob24
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« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2010, 04:48:22 PM »

I would guess that that's Anja herself in the driver's seat.

Bob
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wal1809
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« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2010, 05:39:53 PM »

I am with everyone else on this so far as replacing steel over the wheels.  I doubt your going to have to replace it again any time in the near future.  From what I have been told by the old heads is once a fire starts get out fast and don't go back unless your family is in there.  A fire could easily be started from the wheel area.  It is easy to see, slow the fire down as much as possible.  Plywood aint the way to do that.

The second part.  If you coat the plywood with a paint, rhino liner ect. it will not last.  MOre stuff than you think gets thrown up from the tires.  It will wear on the wood beginning immediately.  Even Rhino can hold up long.  Once there is a crack int he applied liner and water gets in, the liner will release and chip off.  I got experience in this area.

We were having bad problems with our boat trailers and gravel roads.  We could not keep from sand and gravel blasting the inside of the fender, which quickly affected the outside.  We used Rhino under there and it still could not hold up to the beating we put it through.
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« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2010, 06:50:15 PM »

Everyone has made the points pretty well about going back with metal on the wheel wells.  I will just echo the fire safety aspect of it.

But one thing I haven't seen mentioned that I would do while you have the floor up is wire brush the rust as much as you can and use a rust neutralizing primer on the metal, topped by a good quality paint.  Best to put an end to the rust while it is relatively easy.

There are a couple places I see where the rust has eaten through a few places on the steel framing.  I would definitely think now is the time to repair those.  It will never ever be easier to do than it is right now with the floor up and wheel wells stripped.
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bryanhes
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« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2010, 06:53:58 PM »

POR 15 is about the best for stopping (neutralizing) rust. I used it on old cars and it seals great.

Bryan
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muddog16
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« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2010, 07:21:53 PM »

I was laying on the couch with my Iphone...........reading this thread......when I saw the floor in your bus I believe PTSD set in.........I've been there done this......OMG....I can even smell it!   I came upstairs to my computer to write this...!   My recommendation is to clean up as much as you can from the engine compartment to the fuel tank compartment front wall!  This is all covered by that thin stainless sheet!  What I did was replace this stainless with a thicker sheet of stainless!  Without the Stainless that floor wouldn't last 3 years with just plywood!  

I don't know what your level of experience is, or how much you know about welding but again this is just me........and its your bus........anyplace there is a hole rusted throught I'd cut the entire piece out and go back with new metal!   Once I had the metal clean I'd use Rustbullet to paint the steel before covering anything,  I'd paint everything I could get to on the chassis, Rustbullet is a great rust inhibitor!  Wear throw away coveralls and gloves and find a nice mask also!

I have a site at the bottom.....there are many pictures start back at the earliest archives, when I first started working on my Prevost and just look at as much as you can.........LOL......good luck.........If I can answer any questions.......don't hesitate!


« Last Edit: March 01, 2010, 07:31:38 PM by muddog16 » Logged

Pat

1982 Prevost LeMirage
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http://prevostlemirage.blogspot.com/
divinerightstrip
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« Reply #12 on: March 02, 2010, 08:26:21 AM »

Thank you all for your suggestions and helpful feedback!!

Yes, I was definitely not planning on just keeping the plywood there, I realize it is less durable than even the thin stainless regardless of how well I seal it.

Now, why it didn't occur to me to just do a thicker gauge of steel? Ingenious.

I used two part epoxy paint to paint the bottom of my plywood when I replaced the floor.  I am lucky enough to live near a place that only sells/installs epoxy paint.  They had various half used cans they gave me a deal on.  The stuff doesn't go bad as it is two parts.  It seals like you wouldn't believe.

Belfert: is there a specific brand of two part epoxy that you have had good luck with? would two part epoxy paint be similarly effective?

the floor problem is not unusual...I mentioned before about the fire problem in this area above tires please take this to heart as it is the biggest problem for a bus disaster...Foam insulation is best if you use board type instead of spray on seal joints with foam in can...I have done one like yours (89 prevost Xl) with two slides..Any thing I can help with please ask...Bob

Thanks, Bob. Be watching your inbox! Wink

Anja,

OK, forget the technical advice. I want to know who the cutie is behind the steering wheel in the first picture. Surely you did ot think you could simply slip that pretty lady past this crowd with someone raising a question. I just surprise dit took so long.

OK, put the metal (heavier gauge) back over the drive and tags. I'd check on the other side and give it the same treatment. After all, you don't want to set up conditions that might just make an ash of yourself!


How can you even see me in that picture? LMAO.
Check the other side? Are you referring to the front of the bus? Is there the same metal over both wheel wells?

To be honest, at this point I am thinking of stripping the entire floor out, starting from scratch, and doing as muddog16 had suggested (an idea that I have been tossing around in my head) and start from the true bottom up.

I was laying on the couch with my Iphone...........reading this thread......when I saw the floor in your bus I believe PTSD set in.........I've been there done this......OMG....I can even smell it!   I came upstairs to my computer to write this...!   My recommendation is to clean up as much as you can from the engine compartment to the fuel tank compartment front wall!  This is all covered by that thin stainless sheet!  What I did was replace this stainless with a thicker sheet of stainless!  Without the Stainless that floor wouldn't last 3 years with just plywood! 

I don't know what your level of experience is, or how much you know about welding but again this is just me........and its your bus........anyplace there is a hole rusted throught I'd cut the entire piece out and go back with new metal!   Once I had the metal clean I'd use Rustbullet to paint the steel before covering anything,  I'd paint everything I could get to on the chassis, Rustbullet is a great rust inhibitor!  Wear throw away coveralls and gloves and find a nice mask also!

I have a site at the bottom.....there are many pictures start back at the earliest archives, when I first started working on my Prevost and just look at as much as you can.........LOL......good luck.........If I can answer any questions.......don't hesitate!



Haha thank you. Smiley I'll definitely check out your blog. Picture tutorials would be most helpful.

My level of experience is minimal, but I'm not afraid of anything! I am a lousy welder (in the aesthetic sense; my welding looks like mini replicas of the Appalachian mountain range) but I enjoy it, and so far my welds have withstood the test of time.
You are right, there are definitely a few pieces of the frame that have been rusted through. Cutting them out and replacing them is a great idea.
I plan on keeping this bus for quite a while, so I might as well do it once, and do it right!


Thanks, all.
I'll continue to post updates on here as I move forward with the project!
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The Bus Girl
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« Reply #13 on: March 02, 2010, 09:17:51 AM »

Look for a welding class at the local technical college. In addition to getting some tips on technique, you'd get access to some nice machines to use without the expense of buying or renting them.  Grin
Not to mention free help from the instructors on what ever project you can bring in.

Might take a cabinetry or plumbing class when the time comes. . .

Sounds like you're going to have a blast!

A friend joined a wood worker's guild to have access to their shop tools. He learned how to use all the tools by helping with some other projects, then when it came time to build his house cabinets, he had plenty of help.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2010, 11:01:03 AM by kyle4501 » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: March 02, 2010, 10:43:19 AM »

I used two part epoxy paint from a company called Durall, but I don't think they distribute outside of the Minneapolis area really.  Any good two part epoxy paint should be fine like whatever they sell at Home Depot, Lowes, or your favorite paint place.  Be warned it is not cheap and it doesn't go real far on plywood, but worth the investment to avoid a rotting floor and major repairs down the road.

Even with epoxy coating you're still going to want to replace that metal over the wheel wells.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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