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Author Topic: MCI 9 One piece door. Any thoughts?  (Read 2246 times)
Jerry
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« on: May 27, 2006, 08:47:55 AM »

Hello, I'm new here, just stumbled across the board while renewing my magazine subscription. You guys seem to know a few things, so maybe you can help. My husband and I are in the process of converting an MCI 9 and thinking of changing to a one piece door with a screen. What are the pros and cons of doing this and is there a good supplier for the parts. Thanks and keep up the good advice.
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2006, 09:17:47 AM »

Hello, I'm new here, just stumbled across the board while renewing my magazine subscription. You guys seem to know a few things, so maybe you can help. My husband and I are in the process of converting an MCI 9 and thinking of changing to a one piece door with a screen. What are the pros and cons of doing this and is there a good supplier for the parts. Thanks and keep up the good advice.

Jerry, Welcome aboard. We really need more female members to try and put the right perspective on some items. Our ratio right now is 29.8:1. I do not think you are included in that number.

 Again welcome aboard and I am sure one of the MCI nuts will be able to answer your question.
Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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« Reply #2 on: May 27, 2006, 09:28:04 AM »

I can't tell ya anything about pro's & con's but I can tell you, I'd try Sam Caylor over around Kansas City for all the pieces you'd need to do it if yer looking for used parts to save$ also probably a good source of advice and installation tips! Sam has and knows MCI STUFF!
Smiley Wink Cheesy Grin Cool Knuckle Cool Grin Cheesy Wink Smiley
Caylor Used Bus Parts
Sam Caylor
785-878-3405
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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

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Ross
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« Reply #3 on: May 27, 2006, 10:36:43 AM »

I can't think of any cons to a one piece door.  I think the best way to go about it is to buy a door and any hardware you need from a wrecked bus.  You could also install an RV door.  My RV parts buddy has lots of doors all different sizes.  If my bus had not come with a one piece door, that's probably what I would have done.  Look at some of the RV salvage places for RV doors.  I'm not sure what a one piece MC9 door is going for these days.  I know back when I bought my bus, the dealer had some doors he was selling for $800 each and they went away pretty fast, so that must have been a good price.  You can probably get an RV door for less than $100 in mint condition.
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DrDave
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« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2006, 06:23:01 PM »

FYI - MCI,

MC8 and MC9 doors are the same.

Any of the one piece doors from and MC 8 will fit the 9, You just have to decide how much of the original
hinges and mechanism you want to salvage from an 8 and then try to install on a 9,

I didn't use the factory hinges and stuff, Just the door and some hefty stainless steel piano hinge,
a few bolts and lots of structural stainless rivets. If you can get the door trim and weather seals too
it makes a much better installation.

The worst part is to remove all the bi-fold door hardware, it involves a lot of work and cutting.

A screen door could be an option but you would have to get one fabricated to fit the doorway.
( keep in mind that you need to SEE out through that door clearly.)
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NJT5047
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« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2006, 08:18:38 PM »

Depending on the year of the MC9, you may have all the hinge points in your coach.  87s may not have the upper door hinge.  83s and down have the upper hinge welded in place and the lower bolt points under a stainless cover. 
When you buy a door, be certain to get ALL the components that you'll need to convert with.  A short list is: upper hinge, lower hinge, limit rod, air lock, limit spring,  ALL weatherstripping shims for the upper hinge and airlock bracket.  Also be sure that the lower hinge is in good condition.  The airlock is needed to prevent the heavy door from cracking or coming open when underway.   You don't need the original "button" opener, or the dash handle.  Those ain't cool in a motorhome.   Apologies in advance to those that think otherwise!
As already stated, there are no "cons" to a sedan door.  However, if your coach has had front end damage, by the time the door is correctly installed, the "install" could be considered a con.  If you have an 87 MC9, you'll have to pull the front upper RH stainless off to access and weld the upper hinge in place.  You'll need a donor RH corner to scavenge a hinge. 
A sawzall will make quick work of the donor coach. 
You'll need a campground latch.   Try to avoid cutting the door frame all the way through to intall a latch. 
The results are worth the effort, and I'd stay with an original MCI door.  The outcome will be more valualble and look consistant with the rest of the coach. 
I paid about $2000 for everything.  Sam Caylor supplied a used door that was both complete and in very nice condition. 
If you don't get all of the parts, you'll be amazed at how fast the "bits and pieces" add up to more than you expected.
Most MC9s have the airlock box, even though the airlock isn't installed on bifolds.  The bifold air control can be used to activate the airlock.   
Here's a pix of a Caylor door installed on an 87 ex-NJT MC9.   You won't see a door latch, but it's there.  An electric solenoid opens the door.  Been working without problems for 3 years now.   
Best, JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.”

Ayn Rand
GENE
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« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2006, 09:11:37 PM »

Jerry,
I made my own and saved a bundle.  I have an Eagle and will be glad to share the how tos if you like.
Coaches may be different but the principles are the same.  Let me know.

Enjoying the journey in NC,
Gene ~ 05 Eagle
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TomNPat
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« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2006, 11:51:05 PM »

The first question is whether you are going to retain the stainless siding.  If not, I think an RV door would look just fine if the bus siding will all be flat and painted.  The big requirement then becomes providing enough view from the drivers seat through that door.  Giving enough viewing is real tough unless you make the door with a window the same shape as the stock one.

If you plan to retain the stainless siding, then having an rv door would be more difficult and could result in a less professional look.

We bought our one piece from Nimco in New Jersey for $300.  It had the big top hinge and the door side of the lower.  It was covered with aluminum and painted so we had to put stainless on it.  It has worked out well on our 84 NJT.  We picked up the door while picking up the bus.  And the guys there were great to deal with.  They advertise in Bus Conversions.

I stripped the NJT two piece doors and the frame is aluminum which surprised me.  But I think a one piece door could be fabricated using the parts from the two piece doors.  It would take some doing, though.

Call Nimco, Caylor, etc.  Think it over, make your decision, and get that 'Steel Tent' on the road!

TomNPat
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Jerry
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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2006, 12:36:25 PM »

Thanks for all the info. After staring at the two pieces all weekend, my can do husband says it would be "easy" to make one door from the two halves, he just needs to salvage an old bay door somewhere for the stainless panel.  So that's our next mission. I appreciate all the advice on the hinges, and I can't wait to see what he comes up with.
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NCbob
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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2006, 02:09:17 PM »

JR, How'd you do that?  I've been wanting to get rid of the button and that dad ratted ratch-a-pratch door opener on my MC5A ever since I got it. No matter how easy I close the door I have to go mash that @#$%^ button!

If you've got the time to send me some info off-board...I'd appreciate it.

Thanks in advance. (See how positive my attitude is?) Grin

NCbob
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DrivingMissLazy
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2006, 03:23:47 PM »

JR, How'd you do that?  I've been wanting to get rid of the button and that dad ratted ratch-a-pratch door opener on my MC5A ever since I got it. No matter how easy I close the door I have to go mash that @#$%^ button!

If you've got the time to send me some info off-board...I'd appreciate it.

Thanks in advance. (See how positive my attitude is?) Grin

NCbob

Maybe post it on the board because I am sure there are or will be others in the future that would like to know also.
Richard
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Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body. But rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, a good Reisling in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming:  WOO HOO, what a ride
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« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2006, 08:06:57 PM »

Hi Bob,
We just returned from a 5 day busn' trip and the short answer to your door latch question is that I used a Bearclaw door latch, found at all hotrod automotive suppliiers, and a trunk solenoid.   I'll post some pix of the setup...or you can come down and see it in person.  I'll be at Dallas' in October.   This is probably not an ideal setup...however it has served me well.  I have redunduncy (other than breaking glass) just in case it craps.  On a bus, if you get locked out, you're really locked out.  We were discussing that this weekend....door window would have to be sacrificed if no contingency.   Some bus guys were attending the festival and found my door interesting.   
This door latch will not, IMHO, safely latch the door when underway.  I've installed the original style airlock.   However, the latch makes a good campground unit.   
I'd really prefer to have a nice Prevost or late MCI mechanical door latch...but, I'm not going to change it out at this time.  We may install smooth sides eventually and that would be the time for a mechanical handle. 
I'll find you some pix of the install. 
BTW, how's that NC inspection going?   I can garuntee there won't be an emission test...only OBDII gasoline powered vehicles have such privilege in NC .
Cheers, JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.”

Ayn Rand
Busnut83
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« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2006, 08:39:05 PM »

I looked for three years for a reasonable (cheap) door... After no luck I made my 2piece a one piece and I couldn't be happier...  2x 1.5 aluminum angles and home depot hinges and 2x 12x24 stainless steel safety plates (to make it look fancy) pic on request...   Shocked
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