Interior framing progress

Overhead bin structure assembled. I’ll just start moving back from here.

The general idea is that I make vertical slices that are screwed into the floor, chair rail, and wall rails. Then horizontal sections that bolt to verticals. Most horizontal segments get one bolt directly into a bus rib as well.

Bunk progress

I picked up the slats for the frames, and installed them with the slat retainers to allow them to go vertical. The kids were pretty excited about this.

Passenger seating and interior wall framing

I started fabricating the mount points and structure for the overhead bins up front, and the overall framing for walls and structure in the bus. I’m starting at the front, I guess.

This picture is a little weird, the angle exactly lines up with some other stuff. Anyway, the horizontal bar is just resting there as a guide for squareness – but it does represent the inner angle section of the overhead bin. There will be a plywood “floor” in the overhead bin. The lower section you can touch when sitting in the seat will have some upholstery on it, as well as overhead lights and vents.

I’ll probably leave out the FAA mandatory fasten seatbelts signs.

The curb side has two rows of seats, but basically the same setup.

Progress update

Over the last month or two not a lot got done, well lots of little stuff I guess. Also the last three weeks our entire family has been sick with flu/cold/lung crud sinus infections.

Wipers put together
Heated mirrors re-wired
installed bumper
seat belt stuff, dash things, some engine bits

The biggest project has been trying to get to a point of completion on the luggage bay.

It was a bit ugly, I had to pull out a lot of rotted plywood, and the sheet metal down there was just starting to get to a point that all the galvanizing was no longer going to protect anything.

I gave the floor of the basement the same treatment as the floor in the bus: needle scaler, some flap disc grinding, then phosphoric rust converter. I also hit the entire surface (even where there was good paint still) with some 80 grit sandpaper.

I sprayed raptor truck bed liner all over the floor of the bays, and it’s pretty nice now. I’ll sikaflex all the seams so they’re water tight, and I’m thinking of installing some water drains as well.

The same weekend of the bays I took the bus for a drive, we had all the family riding in the coach seats I installed. It’s pretty fun to drive, all my windows and mirrors are super dirty, it was a sunny weekend.

I have a bunch of steel tube so I can start fabricating my walls, cabinets, and overhead racks.

I had a friend come over with his shuttle bus he’s converting, we were comparing vehicles. It’s pretty amazing how much longer the bluebird is, and his coach isn’t exactly short either.

I have a question about driving: when rolling around in my neighborhood, should I leave the shift console on the highest? (gear 5) or should I set it lower like 3? I’m finding the computer likes to try and lug the engine around a bit and it seems to wait until the engine lugs a little more than I’d like on some of the short steep hills in my neighborhood.

On one particular hill, I was able to idle down the steep hill, reach the bottom, then inertia carried me up about half way. The entire time the trans was in 5th gear, and by the time the transmission computer realized what was up, it hadn’t downshifted enough, fast enough, and it bucked a little bit before figuring out it needed to be in 2nd gear.

I think it’s just an edge case but made me worry a little bit if it was behaving properly. Oh yeah it’s an Allison MD3060 without a retarder and 6th is locked out.