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Poll
Question: I keep getting asked why I decided to buy a bus and not an S&S. Of course there are a number of reasons but I have wondered exactly what makes an otherwise reasonably intelligent man (or woman) choose to build a bus?
For the thrill of building my own - 29 (17.2%)
For the safety - 33 (19.5%)
Because S&S are too prone to being made cheaply or otherwise falling apart - 36 (21.3%)
I can do it in steps instead of paying all at once - 35 (20.7%)
I think I had a stroke or was drunk at the time - 7 (4.1%)
Because I'm afraid the wife will toss my can out someday and I need a place to put my junk - 6 (3.6%)
I was already very familiar with buses so it was the natural choice - 9 (5.3%)
Other - please elaborate - 14 (8.3%)
Total Voters: 53

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Author Topic: Why did you choose a bus?  (Read 2872 times)
Paladin
Dave Knight
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« on: January 09, 2008, 09:28:15 AM »

I keep getting asked why I decided to buy a bus and not an S&S. Of course there are a number of reasons but I have wondered exactly what makes an otherwise reasonably intelligent man (or woman) choose to build a bus?
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'75 MC-8   'Event Horizon'
8V71  HT740
Salt Lake City, Utah

"Have bus will travel read the card of the man, a Knight without armor in a savage land...."
belfert
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« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2008, 09:33:39 AM »

There was no way I could ever find a S&S with bunks and seating for 8.  I also thought it would be less expensive, but it turned out to cost a fair bit more than I ever imagined.

I could have choosen a much less expensive shell , but I figured I would probably have faced more time and expense getting the shell ready to go plus my Series 60 gets 2 to 3 MPG better than 102s with the two stroke and automatic.  It turns out I still had to spend a lot of money getting my shell roadworthy.

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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
JackConrad
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« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2008, 09:44:07 AM »

    My primary reason was safety. After seeing several S&S invlved in accidents while working as a Paramedic/Firefighter, I wanted something much more substanstial for my family. Other reasons were "pay as you go" rarher than paying someone a lot of interest as well as the satisfaction of doing it myself, to my standards.  Jack
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Growing Older Is Mandatory, Growing Up Is Optional
Arcadia, Florida, When we are home
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Hartley
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« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2008, 10:00:18 AM »

Because a Bus is much safer than Experimental Aircraft...

You only have to be Mental to own a bus... Roll Eyes Roll Eyes Roll Eyes
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Never take a knife to a gunfight!
Reddog
1990 Thomas "Hormone Derange" Gunnison, Colorado
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1990 Thomas Transitliner, 8.3 Cummins/Allison Auto


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« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2008, 10:02:57 AM »

Nobody builds anything like what I have...probably couldn't afford to buy it if they did.
Doug in snowy Gunnison
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"If people don't stare and point as you drive by, keep working."
Busted Knuckle
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« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2008, 10:09:06 AM »

Can't haul 59 people & luggage in an S&S and they don't look or ride as good as a SETRA! LOL!
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

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Paladin
Dave Knight
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2008, 10:13:58 AM »

Nobody builds anything like what I have...probably couldn't afford to buy it if they did.
Doug in snowy Gunnison


True, my neighbors all think that I'm rich and eccentric.
The truth is that we don't have kids and own a small home otherwise I couldn't have my toys. Some of the guys I know get aggravated with me because they can't afford it and/or don't know how. Little do they know that I'm pretty much in the same boat except I'm willing to learn. I'm really amazed at how many men nowadays don't own even a basic set of tools or know how to use them.
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'75 MC-8   'Event Horizon'
8V71  HT740
Salt Lake City, Utah

"Have bus will travel read the card of the man, a Knight without armor in a savage land...."
ktmossman
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« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2008, 10:22:17 AM »

I think the survey might have missed one big category -- to do it the way I want to.  I had the privilege of traveling all over the continental US (and a good bit of Canada) with a musical group in my younger days and I want my kids (8 - 13) to have that same experience.  When I started looking at S & S vehicles, I couldn't find one (short of a custom-built $1M rig) that I could really seriously contemplate as a vehicle for 5 people for months at a time.  I might consider one for the occasional week or two, but not much longer.  Also, if you get anywhere near the kind of rig that a family of 5 could spend months in, you automatically get the leather, the marble counter-tops, glass backsplash, etc. which is ridiculous when you have active kids.

My goals for a bus are:

1. All five of us can be reasonably comfortable for long periods, including some notion of "personal" space for everyone.
2. I will have some degree of confidence in the safety of the vehicle on the road and while living in it.
3. It is built with the durability required for an active family, but with practicality for the family budget, both in construction and operating costs.

In other words, I want to do it MY way...
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Don4107
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« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2008, 10:25:57 AM »

It's a character defect, I just can't do anything like everyone else!
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Don 4107 Eastern Washington
1975 MCI 5B
1966 GM PD 4107 for sale
1968 GMC Carpenter
Songman
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« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2008, 10:35:43 AM »

My reason is not really one of the choices. I grew up riding buses in the music business. It was just always a big part of my life. Of course, those were all factory built fancy tour buses and I don't know if I'll be able to get close to that building it myself or not. I spent most of my life on MCIs but Eagles are the legends in tour buses. Most artists are running Prevost now but the Eagles are still the standard.

I've convinced my wife that this will make a great way for me to show her any our daughter the country but since I am putting bunks in, if I ever decide to go back on the road I'll already have transportation!
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zimtok
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« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2008, 10:46:31 AM »

We just "fell" into this bus...

We had no real thought of getting a bus at the time. We had been using a truck and trailer to haul the gear to gigs and everyone drove. Someone we knew that has always had buses for his gospel group decided to get rid of the 4104 he had for the past 25 years and he asked us if we knew anyone that wanted it. We asked around and eventually started thinking that the deal was too good to pass up and bought it for ourselves. We have not regretted our decision yet.
$6K paid directly to him over the next year was the deal. We paid it off in 8 months. It's been a year and a half now and we absolutely love having it.


.
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1960 PD4104-4971 - Memphis TN

Buy the new Eddie L Smith CD "STAYIN LONG" at:
http://www.eddielsmith.com
Everyone is welcome to any of our gigs listed on the website.

buddydawg
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« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2008, 10:57:27 AM »

Simple - Buses are cool.   Cool

Before I bought my bus I had traveled with friends in Class A Motorhomes and one that owned a bus.  One trip on the bus and I caught the bug immediately.  I like the nostalgia that goes along with the bus plus how well they are made.  I never really gave a damn about how much it is going to cost me or how much it will be worth in the end.  I wanted one and I got one.

(now what in tarnation am I going to do with it)   Undecided
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Brandon Stewart - Martinez, GA
DavidInWilmNC
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1978 MC-8 as I bought it May 2005




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« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2008, 11:07:29 AM »

I agree with buddydawg, buses are cool!  Plus, I could do it in steps (better than payments, to me), I could do it like I wanted, and most of the S&S's I've seen are pretty crappy.  It's been a good distraction for me in a lot of ways, but I've neglected a few things around the house since owning it.  At the time, diesel was cheap(er), too and was definitely cheaper than gas!

David
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Tenor
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« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2008, 11:14:38 AM »

Quote
I think the survey might have missed one big category -- to do it the way I want to.
  I have to agree.  And then, to be able to remodel as my needs change.  Can't do that in a stick and staple!  It's not too hard to redo an interior if you don't mess with the toilet and tanks.  I got the bug from my buddy Jim who owned an MCI 7 and was going to convert it.  He didn't finish and basically sold a shell, but I was hooked.  Once my 73 Winnie died and I saw how a s&s turns into mulch, I knew what I had to do.
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Glenn Williams
Lansing, MI
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1968 MCI 7 Ser. No. 7476 Unit No. 10056
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Lee Bradley
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« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2008, 11:16:23 AM »

In part for all the reasons cited above but also for driveability. Every S&S I have driven, you spend all your time chasing it with the steering wheel and that is on a windless day. Buses are designed for a driver to spend hours driving them every day so they have to drive nicely and mine does even on a windy day when cars and vans are being pushed around my bus just tracks down the road.
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