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Author Topic: What do you think of the 35' MCI F3500 bus as a conversion?  (Read 9462 times)
Kevin Warnock
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« on: September 02, 2006, 03:42:06 PM »

Hello,

There is a 35 foot MCI bus conversion on EBay right now. It looks nice and is a 2000 year. It has a Series 50, and the owner claims it gets in the low to mid TEENS in mileage! If true, this would pay for itself in fuel savings vs. the 5 mpg I get with my 35' MCI 5. Yes, it might take a decade plus, but I've been thinking of dramatically upgrading for some time anyway. I bought my 1967 bus to 'see if I liked bussing' without breaking the bank. I like it.

It's a MCI F3500 shell, probably converted from new, as it looks like a pro conversion. I heard these shells are made in Mexico and are not really to be thought of as a normal MCI... is that true?

It doesn't look like it is going to sell in the auction, as there is only one low bid, and only 3 hours left. But I am in touch with the owner and I would like the board's thoughts before I think about this any further.

The cheapest Series 60 conversion I've seen is $250K, well out of my range, so this Series 50 is interesting.

I WANT a 35 footer, by the way, to get into more state and national parks.

Thanks!
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Kevin Warnock
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« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2006, 03:52:07 PM »

Whoops.... I forgot the EBay URL for the bus discussed above...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130021098267&fromMakeTrack=true



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tekebird
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« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2006, 04:01:06 PM »

The F3500 Derives it's liniage as well as it's chassis from the Dina Olympico which was a Flxible Flxliner that was built under License by Dina.

The Company that does alot of my Maint had 2 of them and liked them.

True they are not built like a US/Cn MCI but it is more than capable of being a motorhome.

Alot of the conversions of F3500's I have seen have lacked in underfloor storage....howwwever this one looks like it has an open bay.

If I had that kind of scratch avail I would buy it.
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H3Jim
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« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2006, 04:20:44 PM »

wow, its beautiful.  and should go a lot of miles.  I suspect his reserves is much higher than the 111,000, and its worth more too.
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Jim Stewart
El Cajon, Ca.  (San Diego area)

Travel is more than the seeing of sights, it is a change that goes on, deep  and permanent, in the ideas of living.
belfert
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« Reply #4 on: September 02, 2006, 05:21:18 PM »

The F3500 was built by Dina in Mexico.  It is similiar to the Dina Viaggio 1000 except 8 feet shorter.  MCI basically put their name on a Dina coach. 

I saw a F3500 a while back and I couuld swear it had a a pop out entry door like Van Hool or Setra.  This one has a hinged door.  I wonder if they had a different door put on.  I really, really need a hinged door on my Dina.

My Viaggio gets around 9 MPG so a F3500 could easily get 10 MPG.

Brian Elfert
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RJ
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« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2006, 08:59:59 AM »

I think I have a picture of that very coach, taken at the big FMCA party in Pomona, CA a few years ago when it was a demonstrator.

IIRC, it was converted new from the factory, never a seated coach.  Don't remember who did the conversion, but, by the look of the "private coach" emblem and the interior, it might have been Custom Coach.

Nice rig - I agree w/ Doug, if I had the $$, I'd be very interested!   Shocked

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RJ Long
PD4106-2784 No More
Fresno CA
TomC
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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2006, 09:41:31 AM »

Personally-this would be exactly the bus I would use for my next bus.  I have a 40ft transit and with the three feet of wasted space in the back because of the engine and the wheel wells. If I had a 35ft bus that was raised with no wheel wells and floor flat to the back, I think I could install most the same stuff I have now.  And with the Series 50-it would be perfect.  Course WAY to expensive.  Maybe I could find a normal bus with seats and do the conversion then.  I'm anticipating using my bus for at least another 10 years.  By then the F3500 should be down enough in price to be more affordable.  Even though my transit is easy to drive and maneuver, I think the 35ft size is the perfect size and can be set up for full timing.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
Gary W
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« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2006, 10:01:36 AM »

I saw one of these conversion shells in Salmon Arm BC 2 years ago at a company called Valid Manufacturing Ltd.  that builds slide-outs for Prevost and Newell Coaches. It was sent to them from MCI to design a better door latch for the conversion shell. They let me check it out , it was spray foamed and had the rv windows installed . It looked like a great shell for a conversion.

Gary
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niles500
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« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2006, 10:58:59 AM »

I believe you'll find that this is the same  bus unless there are 2 identical ones out there - FWIW the asking price is about one third the original prices - Sure looks interesting and Staley Coach is a reputable Co.

http://www.staleycoach.com/48556.htm
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eglluvr
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« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2006, 05:41:32 AM »

Its the same bus, or they accidently got their License plates mixed up  Roll Eyes
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belfert
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« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2006, 05:54:43 AM »

From the engine compartment photo, you can sure tell it is a Dina with a few MCI customizations.  The engine compartment looks very much like my Dina Viaggio 1000.

Brian Elfert
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