If you can find a way to turn the co pilot seat you will gain more seating. Loose the washer. There is no way it will keep up with family laundry. Use the area for a pantry. If your bunks are only two high maybe you could add drawer space under the bottom bunks. You are going to need a lot of storage for a family
Don and Cary - You think like we do...well, almost
The Co-Pilot seat is already in place and turns 180 degrees. Bunks will be only 2 high and we are going to cram as much storage as we can into that area.
I think B would provide more space for the kids to do things on rainy days...We didn't have kids with us on the road but I can assure you that there is never enough storage no matter what you do.
Cat - I agree on the more space for the kids. The 3rd area of seating gives us enough space to "separate" the one turtle in the herd causing all the trouble. As far as space goes, with our house more than half empty, we are quickly learning how much stuff we do....n't want/need to take with us. It's painfully freeing.
If your kids are beyond the stage of needing help at the table, maybe this won't apply
Bruce - Our youngest is 5 now...so we should be good for now...at least we think so, but the extra space will be good to help them with schoolwork.
Looking good. I do not see a stove in your plan?
As far as planning on spending most of their time outside:
1. Are you home-schooling? #2 would give more "desk" space. (I was home-schooled from grades 1-12, and tuned out super and humble as well! )
2. As was mentioned, if the weather is tollerable, kids like outside. When there is rain, snow, 100+ degree weather, they will be inside.
Don and Cary mentioned using space under bunks for storage. Here are some pictures of ours. (Just in case you have not been following our amazing and awesome bus build here: http://www.busconversions.com/bbs/index.php?topic=22081.0
We have 8 drawers under the bottom bunk. Each drawer is 18" wide, 7" high and 26" deep. So the bottom bunk is really a chest of drawers. Total length of bunk is 82" (longer than needed for most kids, but our son is what we call in Texas "full grown", at 6-foot 5 inches.)
Normal commercial RV bunks are only 28-30" wide. Our bottom one is 28-3/4", and top one 27". (Our bus is 1.5" narrower at the top than on the floor. Designed that way from factory.) Vertical space between bunks is 29-3/4". Framing for lower bunk is 1.5" square wood. Top bunk is steel.
Steve - Stove top will be an induction cooktop that will stow away. We will also have a convection microwave oven and our main source for cooking will be outside on a grill. We are homeschooling...we have from birth and it's awesome to get confirmation that IT WORKS!!! We have friends that will be opening a school in Mexico City. So i am hoping to get to meet you someday. My wife is pushing for a trip to Mexico and I would be delighted to see your bus. I love the look and all the hard work you have put into it.
As far as the bunks - That is exactly our plan. We will have 2 sets of bunks and 4 drawers under each bunk.
What is the height of your roof in the bus? And what is the spacing between the top of the bottom bunk and the bottom of the top bunk?
I think we are at 6'4" in the middle of our bus. No roof raise. Your son probably wouldn't fit
We put hammocks up in our mci7
Dave - that is awesome. We have talked about doing this. I think we will definitely have hammocks with us but will use them to sleep outside. The only reason being is that our kids will want their "personal space" to go read a book or if we need someone to take a timeout, especially while driving. I love that you have 8 kids. That in itself is truly a blessing.
I think we are 90% on the B plan. We laughed about going to the A plan when the kids have grown up and moved out of the Bus.
As far as the combo washer/dryer, I am with Tom C on this one. There is no way that we could keep up with our laundry with the little combo washer/dryer but whenever we have been camping there is always that time when either there are not enough working machines or it is completely busy when must get a load of laundry done.
I am going to look at a brand new machine tomorrow for dirt cheap (vented combo model) and figured if it really doesn't work out it will be easier to sell later and turn to storage than decide we need a washer/dryer after the storage area is already built out.
One last thing is that our middle cabinet will pull out and give us a little more "prep" space in the kitchen if needed. We took this picture below when we were looking at some RV models and thought we would use the idea for our Bus as well -
Thank you all for the feedback we are truly grateful.