Bus Conversions dot Com Bulletin Board
October 22, 2014, 06:31:13 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: This BB is intended for the sole purpose of sharing conversion and bus related information among visitors to our web site. These rules must be followed in order for us to continue this free exchange of info. No bad mouthing of any business or individual is permitted. Absolutely no items for sale are to be posted, except in the Spare Tire board. Interested in placing a classified or web ad, please contact our advertising dept. at 714-903-1784 or e-mail to: info@busconversions.com.

   Home   Help Forum Rules Search Calendar Login Register BCM Home Page Contact BCM  
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4 5   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Tradeoffs: 35ft vs 40ft, Manual vs Automatic  (Read 8423 times)
babell2
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 198


Brice


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2011, 08:22:31 AM »

I went with the MC-9 for two reasons.  I have used a 26' GMC motorhome and found it to be lacking in space tho we did use it once to sleep 7.  I do have one of the largest turning radius es out there 51' but I am only 96" wide.  With the 102" you can get on the back roads and be illegal in width without knowing it.  Granted most officers don't carry a tape measure and use it but better the safety than the sorrow. On a post script thought the 102" actually turns tighter than the 96" at 44' due to a rear steer mechanism on the trailing axles. My further thought is the KISS principal. Do I want to repair / maintain that system?
Logged

1980 MCI-9 "The Last Resort" Located just south of Atlanta GA.
Just starting conversion. A long way to go!
The other Brice
Chaz
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1508


4108, 8V71 w/auto .


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2011, 09:26:22 AM »

When I was looking/yearning  Roll Eyes I wanted the biggest bad boy i could find....... typical. And altho "size matters" I am tickled to death with my 35' Buffalo. I especially like the big/tall baggage compartments. The PO made the one bay into a kids room with a trap door from the inside. Cool idea. (I call it the basement.) I now use that for my Harley. Altho you may not "need" a lot of storage, having it REALLY makes things nice!!! And you can always use it as a guestroom/sewing room.  Grin Cheesy Cheesy Cheesy lol
Chaz
Logged

Pix of my bus here: http://s58.photobucket.com/albums/g279/Skulptor/Motor%20Coach/
What I create here:   www.amstudio.us
 
"Imagination is more important than knowledge". Albert Einstein
Don Fairchild
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 759




Ignore
« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2011, 10:18:59 AM »

If you want to travel to cal, I know where there is a 1995 country coach on a Gilli bus frame. The engine has around 14,000. after a out of frame in frame. 8V92 and HD 4060 auto, fresh tires, new house batt's and a few other things.

Don

8884733626
Logged
Rick59-4104
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 310





Ignore
« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2011, 12:12:20 PM »

 Just my experience, I am in the hills, have a 4104 35' with the 671 and a 4 speed. I have owned mid size trucks with diesels and automatics, drive a big truck with a 10 speed nightly, and I LOVE driving my bus over the roads here in the Ozarks. On the 2 lane hilly backroads it floats down the road in 3rd gear getting me down the road at  50 to 55 mph.   Fast enough for me and I rarely have to down shift on a hill as running in 3rd I am keeping the RPM"S up there where the old Detroit is happy.  I have a grade that drops 1200 feet in about 2 miles just down the road from me, I can put the transmission in low gear and not even touch my brakes on the way down, as I am a firm believer in you can go down a hill too slow many times but too fast only once.  I used to own a S&S RV with an automatic and I would get hot brakes/brake fade on this hill.  I know a coach with Jake Brakes would get me down but I really do like my manual transmission.

  On the interstate, according to my GPS, it will roll along at 70 to 75, no problem. Is it underpowered?, yes, but it is a bus and the older I get the less of a hurry I am in and I like the 8 to 9 MPG I get. I also like the idea of the availability and the affordability of a used 4 speed Splicer Transmission if I ever have to replace mine. Keep in mine I am "old school" and I like the style of the older 35' coaches where a lot of people like the more square style of the newer buses with the bigger engines, more floorspace and automatic transmissions.

To each his own and that I think  is just one thing what makes this "hobby" of ours so so great. I think that the style and the age of the bus that appeals to you the most should be the big factor in deciding what is the "right" bus for you.  In all probability you will never own the perfect bus, but for me my '59 4104 and the project '52 4103 suit me just fine. Like you said in the title of this post, TRADEOFFS!!! Wink
« Last Edit: May 10, 2011, 03:08:51 PM by Rick59-4104 » Logged

NW Arkansas
1959 GM 4104  No. 4115
1972 Grumman Kurbmaster Stepvan Conversion
1957 Airstream 13 panel Overlander
Lin
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4570

1965 MC-5a




Ignore
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2011, 12:37:16 PM »

I'll just stick to the facts.  The advantage of 40' over 35' is more space.  However, if you utilize the space in a 35' well, you will not see much of a difference.  They both have limits as far as routing and public campgrounds are concerned, but the 40's have more, so a 35' gives you some extra options.  We have a 35'.  I have considered a 40', but still prefer 35'.

Except for making the bus harder to steal, there is no advantage to a manual transmission in an RV (unless shifting gives you joy).  The manual's extra control advantage going down a grade is negated by simply having Jakes on your automatic.  As for ease of driving, dependable climbing, sharing driving, resale, etc., the automatic is the way to go.
Logged

You don't have to believe everything you think.
Tom Y
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 881


80 5C With Cummins L10 in Progress




Ignore
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2011, 01:02:03 PM »

Cherie, If I were in the market for a 35' bus I would look into the Prevost Clifford talked about. I have a 5C and I am happy with it, could be a few feet shorter for us. The prevost will have a dropbox also like the MCI 5s and some Eagles. I would go across the USA to get the right bus, not just looking local.   Tom Y
Logged

Tom Yaegle
bs4104
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 88




Ignore
« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2011, 01:47:11 PM »

Do not forget about the Auto-Shift, a Automatic/Manual Trans.
Logged

102A3 N14 Auto Shift
RJ
Former Giant Greenbrier Owner
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2844





Ignore
« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2011, 04:15:29 PM »

Chris -

Something else to ponder:

A few years ago, another busnut was kind enough to measure his stripped 40' MC-9 at the floor from the dashboard to the rear wall.  I got out the tape and did the same thing with my 35' GMC PD4106.

With 5-feet exterior overall length difference, suprisingly, the interior length was only different by 2' 9".

Why?

T-drive MCI vs V-drive GMC. 

I'd also take up Clifford's offer to get in touch with the owner of the 35' Prevost. 

FWIW & HTH. . .

 Wink
Logged

RJ Long
PD4106-2784 No More
Fresno CA
Lin
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4570

1965 MC-5a




Ignore
« Reply #23 on: May 10, 2011, 05:49:31 PM »

RJ, are you sure that the difference is in the drives and not the MCI radiator/fan compartment.  The wall behind our bed, which is at the fan compartment, is 32'6" from the front windshield.  Our 5a, although nominally 35' is really less than that even down at the bumpers.  It is really probably only 34' at the mid windshield level. 
Logged

You don't have to believe everything you think.
MikeH
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 109




Ignore
« Reply #24 on: May 10, 2011, 05:59:09 PM »

This is not a bus, but ever since I saw it, thought it was a pretty cool idea. Tiny houses or small houses on trailers. There are several floor plans available, and they sure make great use of the space. Have fun looking at least: Tiny Houses

Mike
Logged

"It just ain't fair! How come the good guys always win?" -Bad Jack Cutter
TedsBUSted
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 236




Ignore
« Reply #25 on: May 10, 2011, 07:31:02 PM »

. . .Except for making the bus harder to steal, there is no advantage to a manual transmission in an RV

Ha ha ha   Grin

Now there's one for the books. LOL
Logged

Bus polygamist. Always room for another, especially 04 or 06 are welcome. NE from Chicago, across the pond.
chev49
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 763




Ignore
« Reply #26 on: May 10, 2011, 08:59:36 PM »

yeah, put one of those on top of your bus... Grin

the last bus i bought was a 35' X 102 flx ... and for 2 of us it's just right...and it goes into lotsa off the path campgrounds, but like post earlier... ain't exactly legal on the side roads, but I never have been stopped ever in any of my 4 busses i've had over the past 25 yrs... I don't think the 40 or more would fit in lotsa places i have gone. Not to mention ive gone several places that i shouldn't have... However, my dad had a fuel business when i was growing up, and i had to go up lots of very steep logging roads in the west coast in oregon, so i haven't been too imtiminated by narrow roads, etc. Anyway, its just my preference and works for me...

My brother lives up a steep old logging road, and drives his 4106  manual tranny up and down it... I don't know how, as one switchback is so sharp you almost need a cat to drag your hiney around (not to mention the drop off.. ) ...n i won't take mine up to his place.... so if i was just going to live on the freeways, i would want 45'.
Logged

If you want someone to hold your hand, join a union.
Union with Christ is the best one...
RJ
Former Giant Greenbrier Owner
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2844





Ignore
« Reply #27 on: May 10, 2011, 09:10:59 PM »

RJ, are you sure that the difference is in the drives and not the MCI radiator/fan compartment?

Lin -

The measurement on both vehicles was taken on the floor, from the dashboard vestibule to the first engine compartment step up.

It was not taken from the windshield to the very back wall, just on the floor.

I know, I was surprised, too!



Chris -

Another couple thoughts have crossed my mind that might be a consideration:  ground clearance and insurance.

A highway coach has much less ground clearance than a conversion done on a skoolie chassis.  So off-roading and backwoods boonie-bouncing will be something you might have to re-think.

OTOH, getting insurance for a skoolie conversion, unless done on a transit/coach-type pusher chassis compared to a dog-nosed model, will be much harder to obtain.  (Oh, and skoolie chassis are notoriously under-powered.)

Might also consider a conversion done on an RTS chassis.  Altho based on a transit, most folk who have converted them have done all the necessary work to have basement storage and tankage.  Sometimes referred to as the 2nd generation "Sports Car of Buses", they have a very tight turning circle and a really nice ride.  The larger interior wheelwells create some challenges, but they're not insurmountable.  If you can find a 35' x 102" model, it's like driving a big mini-van!

FWIW & HTH. . .

 Wink

Logged

RJ Long
PD4106-2784 No More
Fresno CA
Lin
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4570

1965 MC-5a




Ignore
« Reply #28 on: May 10, 2011, 10:38:08 PM »

RJ,

My point was that since the bed is usually all the way in the back partially over the engine compartment, this does not account for much of a loss of useable space.  The head of the bed is about 18" from the rear of the bus.  This limit is created by the radiator/fan compartment.  How much closer to the rear can the bed be on the 4106?  That would show the real difference.
Logged

You don't have to believe everything you think.
LarryN 4106
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 291




Ignore
« Reply #29 on: May 11, 2011, 03:44:35 AM »

I also came from the GMC Motorhome world (26' Palm Beach). Took many trips going to college b-ball games some just wife, dog, and me and others with our daughters, who both played college ball. Also vacations. I thought..."man, this thing is small"....but we did it and survived these trips. Then I moved to the 4106. Frankly, it's the same story, just spread out. You put people and gear in a 96" wide bus and I really don't care how long it is. I subscribe to the old boat axiom in answer to "how many does it sleep?"....well, "it PARTIES 10, EATS 6, and SLEEPS 2". Same thing with a bus. I would NOT like bigger. My wife would also like to get another GMC and has never taken to the bus.

As for manual vs auto.....I have no pluses and/or minuses on either. When you are heading down the road, unless it is mountainous, you can drive 300 miles and never touch the clutch.
Logged
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4 5   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!