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Author Topic: re: Interesting skoolie concept  (Read 1716 times)
Mex-Busnut
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« on: July 18, 2014, 08:36:18 AM »

I think what really caught my eye is how this architecture student made each section in such a way that it is endlessly adaptable for whatever purpose he has at the moment. Check it out.

http://www.hankboughtabus.com/
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« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2014, 12:19:10 PM »

I bookmarked his website when I first read it  -  I'm definitely going to get some ideas from him.   I especially like his bus's open airy look by not having anything higher than the bottom of the windows, but unfortunately that isn't achievable for me.   His window shades are a good idea, and I'll also convert one of my roof hatches into a skylight above the bed.   I get ideas from lots of different places, some unconnected with bus conversions per se.   Le Corbusier said that a house is a machine for living in  -  my bus may be a mobile version of that concept.

John
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2014, 02:42:55 PM »

I wish he had started with a real coach platform instead of a school bus.  The reality is that there are plenty of coach shells out there for ridiculously cheap prices.  Heck, I know of one in particular, just put up on BNO!  I know of all the downsides beyond just cost, but still -- his implementation in a 40' or 45' would have been something more interesting to me.

That said, I have given thought to picking up a schoolie and cutting the back body off.  Then build some retractable ramps, put in some e-track, and all of a sudden I've got a unique and super-cheap hauler for my other cars, tractors, and toys.

Cheers, John
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« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2014, 05:58:59 PM »

Do you mean like this Smiley

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« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2014, 07:20:08 PM »

That for sure is a way to get the bus done quickly, cheaply, and usable. He'll find out what a pain the porta potti is, and get tired of constantly buying ice for the ice chest. Then no shower? Well, to each his own. Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2014, 09:48:08 AM »

It's not a bad school project, but I don't see anything particularly original.
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« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2014, 01:28:31 PM »

It's not a bad school project, but I don't see anything particularly original.
Lin,

In all design fields, be it architecture or landscape or industrial design or whatever, there are rarely ever original design elements.  Partly that's a matter of matter (materials) and of constraints like the size of a bed.  Then there's the issue of cost.

In the real world, original design has to do with how the designer handles the elements to meet specific design goals and Hank's bus is certainly unique and met his design goals.

I say this as a person who has experience in architecture, landscape, engineering, industrial design, furniture design and automotive styling.

edward
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Lin
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« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2014, 01:55:51 PM »

Edward, I certainly do not disagree that one must deal with real world constraints.  However, the originality I am referring to is at least to have some innovative variations on what has been already been done.  I did not notice anything that has not been done in the many, many years of trailer construction or by Ikea.

Part of going to school is learning the process required for that particular field.  Students write ridiculous poems and paint crappy pictures, but they have to start somewhere.  That's an essential part of the learning process, and I respect it. 
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« Reply #8 on: July 20, 2014, 02:50:53 PM »

Lin, indeed Hank's bus design is certainly that of a beginner.  It is very "archetectonic" and very much a school project.  Comfort, for instance, was sacrificed in favor of his ideal vision.

Even so, it is a far cry from any usual practice in either motorhomes or trailers.  His slide-up window shades that double as thermal insulation are something I've never seen elsewhere.  (Easily overlooked where they are described in the text.)

I also see special value in getting folks here to think about things like natural lighting.

edward
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« Reply #9 on: July 20, 2014, 06:12:24 PM »

Edward, point taken. Sometimes someone that is new to a particular field may do things in a novel way that can be of value to others that have narrowed their vision through familiarity. 

How about this one:
Hong Kong architect turns shoebox apartment into 24 rooms
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« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2014, 09:00:25 PM »

That for sure is a way to get the bus done quickly, cheaply, and usable. He'll find out what a pain the porta potti is, and get tired of constantly buying ice for the ice chest. Then no shower? Well, to each his own. Good Luck, TomC

He does write that it is a work in progress and a plumbed toilet, stove top and fridge are next on the list.

I have a cassette toilet in two of our vehicles and where we use them, that concept is by far the better solution compared to having a large fixed black tank. Only wish the BigFoot camper had a cassette unit too.
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« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2014, 09:10:40 PM »

Off topic a touch but this is an interesting spin on a skoolie.

Kevin
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« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2014, 11:09:30 PM »

When we used to live in a heavy agricultural area, I used to see schoolies pulling porta potties. I had thought that it was for field workers, but now I see that they were just alternate RVers.
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« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2014, 08:24:13 AM »

I just got my 9 back on the road a few weeks ago, I went with an open concept as well, it's definitely achievable with more amenities than he's done here, makes for amazing sights and pictures on the road




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« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2014, 09:10:00 AM »

I just got my 9 back on the road a few weeks ago, I went with an open concept as well, it's definitely achievable with more amenities than he's done here, makes for amazing sights and pictures on the road


I like!
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« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2014, 11:37:01 AM »

The idea of retaining every window and not having any furniture or anything else above the waistline certainly gives a very open, airy, spacious feel - I like it.

I also like the concept shown in the video of using moveable walls to create different rooms within the same space - most definitely something with could be done in a bus conversion with (a lot of) effort. Although I suspect an idea like that would lose it's shine when up against the everyday annoyance of (for example) having to get every single thing in exactly the right place in the bedroom before you can move the wall to go to the bathroom or use the kitchen. On a more modest scale though - definitely some good concepts there.

I have a photo on my computer somewhere of an old (1950s) caravan (travel trailer) which had a concertina top section which lifted-up when parked to give the caravan a full upstairs as well as a downstairs. And the mega-buck motorhomes (semi-trailers) used by the F1 teams nowadays all do the same thing - if you can be bothered there are definitely many more inventive ways of building a bus conversion than most of us realise

Jeremy

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« Reply #16 on: July 23, 2014, 11:27:50 AM »

I love seeing what others are doing, and I think Hank is applying fresh thought to an old theme. Kudos.

With that said, even with the addition of a shower, toilet, stovetop and fridge, I believe his project will still be best suited as an extended party platform for a few college friends. Would not suit our needs as a full timing couple, but that's not a criticism of Hank or his bus.

The idea of retaining every window and not having any furniture or anything else above the waistline certainly gives a very open, airy, spacious feel - I like it. 

No offense, Jeremy, but I don't like it. Partly because our bus is low, and I don't want the world looking in. Partly because all those windows take up so much valuable wall space. Mostly because that much uninsulated glass is a nightmare during cold weather. We barely survived last winter in our Gillig even with most of the windows insulated and covered on the inside. To be fair, other areas of the bus, including the floor, were not insulated, but I am of the "put a few thermal pane windows where you need them" school. Can't wait to reskin in late summer and get rid of all that glass. We lived for a year and a half in a step van with no windows. Just windshield, front doors and two skylights. Plenty of light for us. We did, and still do, spend a lot of time outdoors.

But of course, different strokes.... I'm glad everyone is free to convert in the manner they see fit, and — again — I love to see what folks are doing.

Best to all,

Jim
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Jim Huskins
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« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2014, 04:12:09 PM »

...
No offense, Jeremy, but I don't like it. Partly because our bus is low, and I don't want the world looking in. Partly because all those windows take up so much valuable wall space. Mostly because that much uninsulated glass is a nightmare during cold weather. We barely survived last winter in our Gillig even with most of the windows insulated and covered on the inside. To be fair, other areas of the bus, including the floor, were not insulated, but I am of the "put a few thermal pane windows where you need them" school...

But of course, different strokes.... I'm glad everyone is free to convert in the manner they see fit, and — again — I love to see what folks are doing.

Jim's post brings some things to consider to mind.

First, the heat load and energy consumption of artificial lighting.  With incandescent lights -- and fluorescent lights -- for 8-9 months of the year, the heat to produce a given amount of light from artificial sources is greater the the heat from sunlight.  And then you also have added expenses to make the power to operate said lights and the air conditioning to combat the the extra heat.  LED lighting is a huge win here.

Second, Many RVs of all types, not just bus conversions create wall space that begs for some sort of decorative art.  I prefer the ever changing natural scenery a window brings.  The flip side is that "ever changing natural scenery" is in short supply in parking lots and close packed RV parks.

Third, a personal quirk is that I feel safer when I can see what's going on outside.

Last, I see nobody paying attention to the important issue of fresh air exchange.  Your body burns O2 and puts out CO2 and after a while there is not enough O2 without fresh air.  When you skin over the old windows and put in a few new windows that seal tightly to keep the cold (or heat) out, after you've spray foamed over all the seams inside, what are you going to breathe.  Architects and HV/AC engineers have to meet standards to insure breathable air yet nobody seems to give it a thought here.

edward
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« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2014, 06:21:50 PM »

Edwards's points are excellent. We are careful about air flow in particular. Three factory roof vents help. Our windows will be strategically placed, and our door latches open. We use one of those screens with magnets in the middle, and I no longer feel a need to build a framed screen. LED lighting throughout.

Thanks, Edward.

Jim
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Jim Huskins
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« Reply #19 on: July 25, 2014, 03:48:05 AM »

A couple more thoughts, then I'll give it a rest:

First, my interest in not wasting wall space has nothing to do with art or decoration. Since our Gillig is a low floor, we have no bay storage. Our tank and battery space is under a five foot extension of the rear floor which is two steps above main floor. We have plenty of room for storage, but it's in the form of cabinets, and of course those take wall space. Natural finish maple cabinetry will be decorative, but that's not their primary gig. We'll have plenty of glass for viewing scenery, but most of the walls will be smooth on the outside and well insulated.

Second, I concede that others have different standards of what it takes to make them "feel safer." Lots of access for prying eyes has the opposite effect for us, and of course everyone should take the approach that works for them.

Best to all,

Jim
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Jim Huskins
Marion, NC
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« Reply #20 on: July 25, 2014, 10:37:13 AM »

Thanks for the nice mention Jim.

Very definitely, each of us has different needs and attitudes.  I specifically called out wall space with no purpose other than decoration.  Storage is not wasted space -- in fact, I consider such to be a necessity for many conversions.  Your bus is a prime example.

In regard to the issue of people outside seeing in, that is the beauty of the slide-up window shades Hank used on his schoolie.  When your shades operate this way, the see-thru section is above, usually way above, the heads of people standing outside.  I plan on doing this.

A new poster to the Bus Projects, Jeremy Watson, provided a link to the professional firm that did the original design for his MCI conversion.  On their website, they say -

"Comprehensive pre-construction planning is IMI’s specialty.  This is critical to creating consistent results and happy clients.  We relish in making beautiful, comfortable interior environments."

Most of the active members here have experience with conversions that were in some manner or other poorly implemented -- threads like this (and many others) are invaluable to me in pre-construction planning before wasting time, effort and money.

edward
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« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2014, 10:57:50 AM »

I wish he had started with a real coach platform instead of a school bus.  The reality is that there are plenty of coach shells out there for ridiculously cheap prices.  Heck, I know of one in particular, just put up on BNO!  I know of all the downsides beyond just cost, but still -- his implementation in a 40' or 45' would have been something more interesting to me...

Cheers, John
But you can put a skoolie in places that you couldn't put a coach (like those off the beaten path campgrounds we like). We dragged the crap out of the back end of the Eagle 05 getting it up my parents' graveled driveway where we parked the coach. The ($1400) skoolie was parked in the same place and the driveway was even more rutted when it was pulled in. No problems and the rear didn't even come close to dragging. While I do miss the bays under the Eagle 05, I am happy with the BlueBird that has FAR less rust (as in virtually none) than the Eagle. I wish we had bought the skoolie first. But if we did, I would have never been on this forum and I would not have learned so much about coaches from folks who were very willing to answer my idiot questions and then been able to apply a great deal of that acquired knowledge to the conversion of the skoolie. We even made the 2 part center hinged entry door into a single door adapting the methods used to make an Eagle 2 piece door into a single door. The biggest difference is we managed to convert the BlueBird for far less money than we had planned for the Eagle. I don't think we would have used laminate flooring as wall covering in the Eagle. I don't think we would have painted the Eagle with a foam roller. I don't think we would have used hollow core interior doors as partition walls in the Eagle. I don't think we would have turned two window air conditioners into built in units. We thought farther "outside of the box" than we would have done with the Eagle. I think a great deal of it is because, like David is always saying, it's just a skoolie. It's very liberating. And while our floor plan for the 40 ft skoolie is very similar to the 40 ft Eagle, we did change the materials quite a bit. I like our choices and I think the skoolie is turning into a more suitable residential vehicle than the Eagle would have been. With the Eagle, I had a hard time going "cheap" because every thing tended to get upgraded because it was an Eagle and the perception is that an Eagle is, and should be, a higher end conversion than a skoolie.
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shelled
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« Reply #22 on: July 31, 2014, 09:19:13 PM »

lornaschinske (did I spell that right?)--

you make a good point, but when are you going to post pictures in the Projects sections so the rest of us can crib ideas ?

edward
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« Reply #23 on: August 01, 2014, 06:21:16 AM »

when are you going to post pictures in the Projects sections so the rest of us can crib ideas ?
I have pics scattered here and there. Got some on photobucket too (where I store most of the pics). We have a few more things to do, then I will organize the pics I need and post a tour of the bus.
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