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Author Topic: 1937 Kenworth 2 level bus  (Read 2649 times)
pipopak
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« on: November 02, 2011, 04:04:18 PM »

Sort of steampunk Scenicruiser!. At:
http://images.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/02/two-levelbus-thirties.jpg
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Boomer
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« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2011, 08:54:07 PM »

For a time, I owned the very last highway coach manufactured by Kenworth, the XW-1.  It was built in October, 1948 which was coincidentally the same month and year that North Coast Transportation was sold to Greyhound and became North Coast Greyhound, then wrapped into  Northwest Greyhound which consisted of several small regional lines that the hound was buying up.  The XW-1 was a demo that had some features not found on the 25 previous W-1 coaches that Kenworth turned out.  KW was unsuccessful in getting GHL interested in purchasing more W-1's although they did operate the XW-1 (NWGHL unit no. Y1001) for several years on the old North Coast routes, primarily up and down Hwy. 99 between Vancouver BC and Portland.  The W-1's were only sold to North Coast and Intermountain Transportation of Anaconda, MT.  They were powered by Hall Scott 190's which were 779 cubic inch 240 hp "pancake" gas engines, with either a 4 or 5 speed Spicer.  The XW-1 featured torsion bar suspension and 37 reclining seats with underfloor and trunk baggage bays.  The big Hall Scott, although an excellent long life engine only produced around 3-4 mpg and just could not compete with the General Motors Diesel 6-71 which was taking over the industry by that time.  With no further orders, Kenworth dropped out of the highway coach market.  The lucrative school bus division was transferred to Pacific Car and Foundry (the Kenworth Pacific) and a few years later sold off to Gillig.

The excellent picture that you posted is of a deck and a half, or "decker" as North Coast referred to them.  During the '30's Kenworth quite often relied on out of house body builders to furnish the body that went on the KW chassis.  The body on the bus pictured was built by either Heiser or TriCoach and the bus had a Hall Scott 180.  Most of the NCL coaches, including the Kenworth W-1's had the distinctive round NCL light on the upper front.

Kenworth produced buses from 1922 to 1948 (not counting the above mentioned school bus production).

There is your Kenworth bus lesson for today guys, LOL.
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'81 Eagle 15/45
'47 GM PD3751-438
'65 Crown Atomic
Vancouver, WA USA
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« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2011, 11:05:50 PM »

The big Hall Scott, although an excellent long life engine only produced around 3-4 mpg and just could not compete with the General Motors Diesel 6-71 which was taking over the industry by that time. 

   The lucrative school bus division was transferred to Pacific Car and Foundry (the Kenworth Pacific) and a few years later sold off to Gillig.

   It always amazed me that it took almost 50 years to get diesels into school buses. Guess it all depends on whos spending the money, and whos money their spending.

   That is a cool looking Bus, thanks for sharing. I wonder what the ride was like back then. My folks talked about driving 40 west of Denver in the mid/late 40's. They were talking about that right up till the end. IOW it was SCAREY!
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DMoedave
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« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2011, 03:50:54 AM »

Great pic, boomer, you can start the history section on the bus magazine.
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we love our buses!!! NE Pa or LI NY, or somewhere in between!
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« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2011, 03:55:41 AM »

Interesting history lesson and neat looking bus too so thanks for posting that. As far as skoolies being slow to switch to diesel, I think the times dictated that. You have to remember back over 50 years ago, gasoline was as cheap as dirt so it would not have been practical for school bus operators to spec. diesels since added fuel efficiency would take a long time to offset to added cost for the engine. This would have been the case for smaller buses and couple that with the fact the some diesel engines back then were all but impossible to start in the winter unlike today where they are greatly improved. Cripes, I remember one of our skoolies in my grade school which was a pain to start all the time and this was a 1960's vintage gasoline engine.
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TomC
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« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2011, 07:24:57 AM »

Even in the late 60's, going to junior high school, I rode in a small 2 piece windshield Crown that had a Hall-Scott in it.  It kicked but with the newer buses that had Cummins 220's and also Detroit 218 (on the name plate) in them.  Had dual ignition and started everytime with just a one second push of the starter button.  But-2-3 mpg was a killer.  s

My first semi I drove was a '65 White compact that had a White Comet V 150hp gasoline engine in it.  Revved to 3400rpm and surprisingly got decent mileage only about 50 gal a week doing local furniture moving.  But was slow-had a 5spd synchroed transmission with a 2spd rear end-and I used all the gears.  Be interesting to see what a large cu/in 6 cylinder gasoline engine like the Hall-Scott could do today with direct electronic fuel injection with turbocharging and air to air aftercooling as to fuel mileage.

Interesting note-I rented a GMC Acadia (medium SUV with AWD) with a 3.6 liter V-6.  The electronic engine governor was set at 7,200!  The engine is rated at 288hp @ 6300rpm-never seen such a high revving engine in a normal non performance car.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
CrabbyMilton
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« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2011, 09:38:40 AM »

Just like the FORD F150 and that new Ecoboost V6 that puts out similar number than a larger V8. Time will tell if that engine will be ok long term but it does validate your point in what would those big old gasoline bus and firetruck engines be like today if they had applied this new technology to them. I rented a DODGE CHARGER last month while my '04 GRAND MARQUIS was getting the hood and trunk repainted and that DODGE had the 3.6L V6 and that thing was rated at 292 HP. My 4.6L V8 is rated at 224 HP. So engines are indeed putting out more power than ever.
I still like the way my V8 sounds though. Smiley
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Boomer
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« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2011, 09:50:08 AM »

Hall Scott had a long and storied engine manufacturing history, even at one time building aircraft and marine engines.  The most popular bus engines were the 590 and 779 ci and you would find them in Crowns, Kenworths, ACF Brills and other popular makes, most all were horizontals.  One power hungery trucker back in the late 40's early 50's even had Kenworth install the monster HS V-12 in a new conventional.  I have a picture of it after the petroleum tanker body was installed.  Because the engine was around 600 hp it obviously was quite thirsty.  To solve this issue the owner simply took the fuel supply from the transport tank!  There is a picture of it on the Hall Scott website; www.hallscottengines.com.  Notice the set back cab to accomodate the length of the V-12.

You would find the HS 779 in most of the ACF Brill IC41's because American Car and Foundry owned Hall Scott.  They were real powerful and real fast although you couldn't stop them.  Trailways and Greyhound both ran them.  It's too bad that Hall Scott was behind the curve in developing a diesel engine because as a general rule most of their products were of very high quality and long life.  Near the end, they were purchased by Hercules Engine Co., then faded from history.  There is usually quite a bit of talk about the old days running Scotts on the Crown Coach Junkies forum.

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'81 Eagle 15/45
'47 GM PD3751-438
'65 Crown Atomic
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Paso One
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« Reply #8 on: November 03, 2011, 07:16:22 PM »

The 1947 MCI that I have has the Continental Motors version of the 6 cyl gas engine.
It has a R6572 Transportation engine ( as they called it )  572 cu inches 190 hp 2600 rpm  Govenor speed.
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68 5303 Fishbowl 40' x 102"
6V71  V730 4:10
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