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Author Topic: We have come to a standby on our bus project.  (Read 2944 times)
Mex-Busnut
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« on: September 01, 2011, 04:23:51 PM »

Dear Friends,

My wife and I are are saddened by the series of events that have brought us to put a pause on our dream bus project. Basically, we have had a bunch of setbacks, such as having to replace the air compressor on the engine, replace radiator core and overflow tank, two new engine batteries, fix some structural cracks in the frame and also the engine mounts, and a few other things. Front brakes were thoroughly checked out, and rear brakes were replaced, as were a half dozen air lines. The clutch was also replaced.

But now also my carpenter guy did not come through on his promise to have our kitchen done and installed last Friday, and the A/C guy has not been able to come to do his work, which was also supposed to be done last week.

Next Wednesday we must be on the road, headed North. This will mean our trip will NOT be in our bus. But maybe we can still meet some of you on this trip, if you don't mind us being busless.

We are not giving up: Just pressed the Pause button for a moment. Good Lord willing, maybe in October we will be back home and take up our bus project again. Then in December, we hope to resume our trip plans.

Thanks for letting me purge my air tank here.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2011, 04:25:27 PM by Mex-Busnut » Logged

Dr. Steve, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, Mexico, North America, Planet Earth, Milky Way.
1981 Dina Olímpico (Flxible Flxliner clone), 6V92TA Detroit Diesel
Rockwell model RM135A 9-speed manual tranny.
Jake brakes
100 miles North West of Mexico City, Mexico. 6,800 feet altitude.
demodriver
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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2011, 04:29:38 PM »

I guess its better to be done correctly then to have it rushed thru. 

Good luck with your trip.

Eric
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Mex-Busnut
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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2011, 04:32:17 PM »

Thanks, Eric!
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Dr. Steve, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, Mexico, North America, Planet Earth, Milky Way.
1981 Dina Olímpico (Flxible Flxliner clone), 6V92TA Detroit Diesel
Rockwell model RM135A 9-speed manual tranny.
Jake brakes
100 miles North West of Mexico City, Mexico. 6,800 feet altitude.
wal1809
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« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2011, 04:59:07 PM »

Are yall still headed north on us35? 
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John316
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« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2011, 05:48:50 PM »

Dr. Steve,

I am sorry to hear that. Don't feel too bad, though. You had a great goal, and you worked towards it. Apparently the Lord had other plans.

Also, be encouraged. You have made more progress on your bus, in the last couple of months, then most in years.

God bless,

John
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Mex-Busnut
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« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2011, 05:49:14 PM »

Are y'all still headed north on US-35? 

As far as i know, we will be on I-35 from Dallas up to Kansas City. I will be coming up, Lord willing along the 281 from the Rio Grande Valley and working over to Houston, then Palestine TX, then over to Dallas, and then up to Madison, Wisconsin.

I am open to suggestions for routes!
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Dr. Steve, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, Mexico, North America, Planet Earth, Milky Way.
1981 Dina Olímpico (Flxible Flxliner clone), 6V92TA Detroit Diesel
Rockwell model RM135A 9-speed manual tranny.
Jake brakes
100 miles North West of Mexico City, Mexico. 6,800 feet altitude.
Mex-Busnut
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« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2011, 05:53:49 PM »

Thanks to all for your kind comments.

By the way, we have to be in the Rio Grande Valley area first, as my wife is speaking at another international women's conference in La Feria, TX, on Sept 9-11, and I will be across the river in Reynosa, MEX at a united gathering of churches for special meetings.

And we have to have our awesome daughter delivered in Madison Wisconsin by 4:00 p.m. Sunday Sept 18th.

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Dr. Steve, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, Mexico, North America, Planet Earth, Milky Way.
1981 Dina Olímpico (Flxible Flxliner clone), 6V92TA Detroit Diesel
Rockwell model RM135A 9-speed manual tranny.
Jake brakes
100 miles North West of Mexico City, Mexico. 6,800 feet altitude.
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« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2011, 06:00:52 PM »

I am open to suggestions for routes!


Since you are planning to return home in October, on the return, divert east and join in the fun at the rally in Chattanooga, TN October 14-17.  And I think you would greatly enjoy the Gospel concert at the amphitheater on the other end of the park October 16.

Even though you won't have your bus on the trip, I think you would enjoy it a lot.

www.BusConversions.com/rally/
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Mex-Busnut
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« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2011, 08:16:00 PM »

May we come to the rally, though our bus stays home?
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Dr. Steve, San Juan del Río, Querétaro, Mexico, North America, Planet Earth, Milky Way.
1981 Dina Olímpico (Flxible Flxliner clone), 6V92TA Detroit Diesel
Rockwell model RM135A 9-speed manual tranny.
Jake brakes
100 miles North West of Mexico City, Mexico. 6,800 feet altitude.
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« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2011, 08:31:35 PM »

Absolutely!  There will be several attending that will be staying in nearby motels.  (there are a half dozen motels within a mile)

You can access and print out the registration form via that link I posted above.   If you decide you are sure you can make it, then you can pop it in the mail before you leave.  Or if you need to make that judgement call after you are on the road, print it out, make out an envelope and take them with you.  Then when you are sure, fill it out and mail it.

In fact, even if you do decide before leaving, it may be best to wait until in the U.S. to mail it.  Lower postage and probably faster transit. 
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TomC
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« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2011, 09:24:32 PM »

This is all normal stuff. You buy a bus for cheap, then find out all sorts of hidden items need replacing.  Then get those things done right is important.  This is one of the many reasons it took me 6yrs to do my conversion.  Mainly-doing as much as I could afford to at a time.  Don't worry, you'll eventually get there.  Just keep up the work when you can, and before you know it, your bus will be in usable shape.  Don't rush it, and don't start buying El Cheapo crap just to rush through the job.  Better to wait to be able to afford what you want, then be satisfied with something you'll always be mad about.  Good Luck, TomC
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Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2011, 09:35:59 PM »

Look at it as a blessing in disguise! This way you can have the bus done by the time she gets out for the summer next spring and the whole family can take a tour of the US when you pick her up from WI. It's better to do it right now than to have problems on the road or have a tragic accident and miss the deadline !
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2011, 04:51:56 AM »

Are y'all still headed north on US-35? 

As far as i know, we will be on I-35 from Dallas up to Kansas City. I will be coming up, Lord willing along the 281 from the Rio Grande Valley and working over to Houston, then Palestine TX, then over to Dallas, and then up to Madison, Wisconsin.

I am open to suggestions for routes!

If your headed 281 and have to jump over to Houston then you route will have to change to US 59 at George West, Texas.  If you stay that course you will be driving by or through the King Ranch while on 281.  When you hit US59 and headed to Houston you will be passing within 10 miles of the house.  Your welcome to stop by, rest your bones, get a fresh start ect.  I promise I will remove all the rattlesnakes out of the spare bedroom if your coming. Grin  It has been so hot here I have had to box them in wooden boxes and get them in the air conditioning.
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« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2011, 05:46:10 AM »

I want to say how impressed I am that you are doing the critically important things first, done right, and doing the comfort things second.  Plus - you take the hard decision to NOT drive the bus before it's ready to fly.  Kudo's to you, doing it right the first time!

Brian
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« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2011, 11:21:37 AM »

Dr Steve,

Join the club!!  I just returned from a 6K mile trip w/o the bus!  Sad

My bus had some issues so it stayed home.

I would rather "do it right" and be ready, and not rush and risk safety or breakdown on the trip.

Maybe next year!

Steve Toomey
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« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2011, 11:55:17 AM »

This is absolutely normal and what everyone always advises. You are doing the smart thing. Take care of the chassis and mechanics first, then do the house stuff. You are doing fine!
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« Reply #16 on: September 04, 2011, 12:17:35 AM »

I have been to a number of bus rallies riding on 4 tires.

If they don't want to see you on 4 tires, then you won't want to hang around with them while riding on more.

get your busless a$$ out to see the busnuts.

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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robertglines1
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« Reply #17 on: September 04, 2011, 04:43:37 AM »

You might realize you made a mistake if you meet us, or Joined a family.  Bob
« Last Edit: September 04, 2011, 05:15:15 AM by robertglines1 » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: September 04, 2011, 08:45:22 AM »

Steve, I'll propose an alternate route between Dallas and St. Louis.  It's the way I go when I drive to clients in Illinois and Indiana.

Come up I-35 to Hillsboro, stay to the right and take I-35 E toward Dallas.  You were going to do that anyway. 

Now, the change - when you get to downtown Dallas (the infamous Mixmaster, unless you want to take I-20 East to I-635, the loop), keep left and head for Highway 75 North, toward McKinney, Sherman and Dennison.  The signs say "To 75 McKinney".  This road is every bit the quality of I-35.  Do a Google Earth Street View, so you know what to expect, and do not do it during rush hour. 

When you cross into Oklahoma, it becomes Highway 69.  Some Interstate quality, some divided State Highway, and a few slowdowns going through towns.

Set the GPS on "Big Cabin, OK" 

If you're using a GPS, when you get north of Muskogee, it may tell you to take the Muskogee Turnpike toward Tulsa, don't do it.  The GPS is trying to save you time, but it'll save two-three minutes, but cost you miles and tolls. 

Stay on the (free) 69, go through Waggoner, and head toward Big Cabin, OK.  There's a decent truck stop there, good for food/fuel. 

Then, get on I-44 East, at Big Cabin, and head toward St. Louis.

This will save you about 50 miles (fuel), and some tolls.  The only toll is between Big Cabin and the Missouri border.  If I remember right, in a car, it'll add about 1/2 hour to your trip, because of some lower speed limits in Oklahoma -- which I consider a fair tradeoff for saving fuel and tolls. 

If you come back that way, when you get on the Oklahoma Turnpike (I-44), tell them you're getting off in Big Cabin, they'll rebate part of the toll.  You might ask at the truckstop about that, I don't remember exactly how it worked.

Arthur   
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
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Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
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« Reply #19 on: September 04, 2011, 11:13:18 AM »

I have no real knowledge or great input on the S TX part although my routing program suggests US 77 to US 181 (either by taking I-37 21 miles N to SR 359 or staying straight on 77 to 181) to SR 123, to I-35. Once on I-35 I'd follow Arthur's route up to Big Cabin, OK and then up I-44 to St. Louis and up I-55 to Normal, IL and up I-39 all the way to Madison!

On the way you might be interested in meeting up with Sonnie Gray near Sherman/Dennis, TX area. (Pottsboro) He is well versed in bus repair and fabrication and has a wonderful Eagle he swapped in a CAT engine and did some awesome re-fab of the rear end and tag axle configuration of it!

You'll be passing by a host of other busnuts  along the way but I don't know who/where they all are located myself! I know LarryN 4106 is in Springfield, MO I don't know who else is on your direct path.

I do know if heading down to the BCM Rally from Madison it would be a very valuable side trip for you to go thru Evansville, IN and see Bob's projects! He has/is doing some awesome home-built conversions!
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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« Reply #20 on: September 04, 2011, 10:22:06 PM »

Hi Dr Steve,

That sounds really frustrating.  We also went through something similar w/our MC9.  Transmission, A/C, etc., etc.,  and intermittent fuel delivery problem.  Replaced trans and finally had mechanic rip out & replace all components of fuel system.  Yike$ ! 

However, as an encouragment, the bus has been like a rock since then.  And I don't mean that it just sits there not moving.   Cheesy   After doing things right, she has treated us very well over the past few years.  That is certainly not to say there may not be problems again at some point, just that once fixed correctly, with the bus, they tend to stay fixed.  As a former motorhome owner, I can say that in our experience, you don't get the same kind of dependability with the motorhome that you do with the bus.  We fixed the motorhome only to have the same things break time and time again.  That hasn't happened to us with the bus.  Once fixed, it tends to stay fixed.  And that is a good feeling.

So, you are taking care of things that will put you in position to enjoy your conversion for many years to come.  Even as it is very painful at the moment.  Also, when you take your time in fixing things, you will tend to find better pricing, and meet more folks who can help you at more reasonable costs.

And  - hope I do get to meet you at the upcoming BCM bus rally!  Bus or no bus.  Smiley

Kind Regards, Phil



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« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2011, 06:42:51 AM »

I want to say how impressed I am that you are doing the critically important things first, done right, and doing the comfort things second.  Plus - you take the hard decision to NOT drive the bus before it's ready to fly.  Kudo's to you, doing it right the first time!

Brian

  I want to concur with this and others comments, your making the right decision. Far too many have rushed things, or put the conversion ahead of the Bus. Making the Bus 100% first will pay off later in a more reliable ride and greater piece of mind. Its easy to talk ourselves into cutting corners to get on the road, and there are many around us egging us into it. But the best decision is to take your time and make it right.
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« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2011, 08:03:49 AM »

Perhaps a clarification on the routing is in order. I-35 is, indeed, a North-South route.  However, in Hillsboro (South of Dallas), and Denton (North of Dallas), it splits into two branches.  I-35E is the Eastern Branch, going through Dallas.  I-35W is the Western Branch, going through Fort Worth.  So, when you get to Hillsboro, keep to the right, and take I-35E toward Dallas.  If you have a real aversion to driving through downtown freeways (the Mixmaster), when you get to I-20, you could take that to the East.  It becomes I-635, and serves as the ring road around Dallas.  When you get to US75/Central Expressway, take that north -- toward Plano/McKinney, and you're back on my suggested route.

By the way, the Interstates south of Dallas are notorious speed traps, so be quite aware of the speedometer.  I-45 is the worst, but I wouldn't speed on I-35, either.

I can imagine the politics and battles over the Interstate routing during the planning stage.  The rivalry between the two cities used to be so strong, that there's a story about a former Mayor of Fort Worth.  If he had to come to a meeting in Dallas, he'd bring a sandwich --- so he wouldn't have to spend any money in Dallas.

Arthur
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Arthur Gaudet    Carrollton (Dallas area) Texas 
1968 PD-4107

Working in the bus industry provides us a great opportunity - to be of service to others
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« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2011, 08:24:58 AM »

Quote from: Runcutter
By the way, the Interstates south of Dallas are notorious speed traps, so be quite aware of the speedometer.  I-45 is the worst, but I wouldn't speed on I-35, either.

I can imagine the politics and battles over the Interstate routing during the planning stage.  The rivalry between the two cities used to be so strong, that there's a story about a former Mayor of Fort Worth.  If he had to come to a meeting in Dallas, he'd bring a sandwich --- so he wouldn't have to spend any money in Dallas.

Arthur

Arthur again I have to concur with you 100% again on the routing and speed traps!

The part bout the mayor is too funny! I'd thought being TX it'd be the other way around and he'd be splurging and showing off how much $ he had to blow! (you know the TX $ reputation)
Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2011, 07:20:11 AM »

Actually, the interstate routing in TX was pretty simple:  LBJ bought up land, then had his cronies in Congress "decide" that the interstate had to run on the land he owned.  Thus, the LBJ that became President with a net worth of just over $100K left office as a multi-millionaire.

The parts of the DFW interstate that are a pain are where it weaves in and out of various city limits.  It goes from 55 to 65 to 75 at the drop of a hat and often for just a few miles at a time.  And every city along the way uses it to their advantage.  I got my first traffic ticket ever playing that game...
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