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Coach for a Tooltruck?

Discussions regarding bus to motorhome conversions are welcome here.

Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:20 pm

Hi folks, I am new here looking to do a conversion of a Coach into a tooltruck. I am thinking about the front 9mts set up as display area with the remaining 3 mts as accommodation.
I am in WA and would like to go to the NW for up to a week at a time. GVM is a concern as I will be filling the bins with extra stock. So far in my research I think that a Denning Hi-Deck would be a suitable vehicle as with the dual wheel tag they are good for 23 ton. What do you guys think?

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby boronia » Wed Jun 06, 2012 6:08 pm

You will need to watch your front axle loading. After you strip all the seats etc out, put the bus over a weighbridge and find out how much capacity you have to play with.
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:55 pm

I am very aware of the front axle load but will have my sales counter up front and one of the good things about tools is that I can move them around.I am working out of a Merc 912 ex Snap-On truck at the moment but it is getting too small and slow for the long trips
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby BLBUS » Fri Jun 15, 2012 8:05 am

There are a few single deck dennings around with Dual Lazy. If you can find one, a Landseer with the dual Lazy, that has had the 8V92 replaced with a 6V92 would be ideal. Sounds like an excellent idea, if/when you do it, could you post some pics ?
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Doc68 » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:18 am

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Fri Jun 15, 2012 11:01 pm

Doc
That is a very interesting set up but I think that it would be too large to use around town. After looking for quite some time I still think that a good Denning Hi- Deck with a 6V92 would be the ideal vehicle

I sell the guys at Detroit Diesel tools and they all say to find a DDEC as they are so much smother running , and a electronic engine should be able to claim the new fuel rebate

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby theroadbossman » Tue Jul 17, 2012 9:03 pm

Hi Toolman,
It seems we are attempting similar tasks. I am in the east and work for Donaldson Filtration; I am looking for a Denning or Austral with (detroit 2 stroke power) to convert to a motorhome that also doubles as a mobile classroom/product display case. I also seel our products to MTU Detroit Diesel, and when I asked the thoughts of using an old skool 6V92TA I was re-affired with the news that they are tried, trusted, reliable, cheap, and fuel efficient - and they make a sweet sound especially if you find one with Jacob Brakes !!
I have been through the fuel rebate thingy, and you can still get the rebate even if your ride is 40 years old provided you claim it under maintenance management. I had an old White Roadboss only two years ago and always got the rebate for it under that.
Love to see some pics when you find a jigger, and love to see some progress shots
cheers
Bretto
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:02 pm

A couple of very neat, well maintained Denning High Decks are currently for sale by Deluxe in Oakleigh South. There is a picture of one of these at http://deluxe-coachlines.com/The%20Fleet.htm and they have been advertised for sale. You'll find the ads if you have a look. I'm sure enthusiasts on this site can offer a number of pictures of the two High Decks operated. These have the double tag axle to allow the maximum loading you are seeking (I think that equates to an extra six tonne). The owner has rebuilt the engines and or gearboxes in one or both of them in recent times and I know has also recently done some exterior repainting on one at least. The owner has always maintained these to a high standard - I have admired them for years. The seats include integrated seat belts and could be sold for fitment to another vehicle - seats without belts are worth nothing. I think these are six cylinder turbo's with the eight speed (many similar vehicles are only seven) and in that configuration can pull well through mountains etc once you get the hang of them. These have regularly been seen at Mt Buller and always ahve new tyres, etc. I think these were both originally set up for express work and have the long range fuel tanks etc - they will even have bunks fitted. They were both re-carpeted and re-trimmed a while back - all you will need to do is pull the seats out (and learn to drive it.
This sort of vehicle is fun to drive - it'd be good to think they would continue to be driven regularly as either of you would do. They're a bit too good to be left sitting in the weather in some caravan park.
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby theroadbossman » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:32 pm

Thanks Croc, I've sent them a request for pricing, let's see what they come back with
cheers
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby boronia » Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:09 pm

There was a guy on here a couple of years back who had a Volvo bus done up as a mobile tool store of some sort. Wonder what happened to him?
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby theroadbossman » Wed Jul 18, 2012 5:31 pm

Hi all,
Michael from Deluxe just gave me a reply on my question to him about hi deck dennings, he has two : a 1987 and a 1988, both with 6V92TA and 7 speed spiocer with dual tyre tag axles. Price? $55,000 including GST. Beautiful looking coaches I must admit, but a little outsid ethis fella's budget. Back to the drawing board :?
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Wed Jul 18, 2012 6:29 pm

I would have thought not such big money for a business or this type. If you consider the miles you may be doing and remember that to make money form your business you wont want to be mucking about with breakdowns there are options that could cost you a lot more in the long run. A lot of engine rebuilds are 20 to 30k, then there's gearboxes, bodywork, rust in frames etc. you could do worse(and I think thess were originally advertised for more).

There could be some even better buys out there but there will also be some shockers. Similar buses with the six speed and the single tag will be available and I hear Dysons has a yard full of old Benz (probably ex Vline) coaches around - but old synchro boxes could be a real problem.

Good luck - i would love to see some pix if the project goes ahead.

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Tue Aug 14, 2012 11:02 pm

Well, I have been busy, Friday 3/8 my wife and I flew to Melbourne and after driving 3848 kms home we now have one of Micheal's Hi-Decks in my shed.
Image

It drives and goes as good as it looks, now the fun starts, Today I started on pulling out the downstairs loo http://www.busaustralia.com/forum/posti ... 7&t=67803#


Cheers Kevin,
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:20 pm

Looks good in the backyard, will look even better on the road with a setting WA sun in the background.
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Mon Aug 20, 2012 8:39 pm

Here it is resting in my shed
Image

And this is in Handorf SA on the trip over
Image

Do people want to see my build photos as I whittle away at converting it
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:37 pm

I would like to see the build photo's and what the end result is as well if possible. I'm sure there are others who are interested as well.
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:51 pm

Ok, I have started on cutting out the downstairs toilet
Image

I have found the hatch that lead into the drivers bunk that has been taken out at sometime
Image

I have made good progress today and will get some more photos tomorrow
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Daz » Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:17 pm

Speaking from experience, removing a shithouse is one of the most disgusting things I've ever done.

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Wed Aug 22, 2012 8:48 pm

Yeah Daz not a nice job but not as bad as I thought
This is where I am up to
Image

This thing was never made to be removed
I am finding that a air chisel and removing small bits at a time seems to be the go
I can now see into the bins
Image
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:52 pm

Looking forward to the next update and next batch of pix Toolman. If you've done any sort of drawing showing your plans can you publish those as well.

Noting how well that truck looked frm the outside are you finding the interior frame in equally good condition?

Thanks,

C
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Mon Sep 17, 2012 8:20 pm

Well I have been busy lately with the country shows and have not done as much on the bus as I would have liked
I have almost got all the toilet and stairway cut out, big job as there was layer upon layer
Under the stairs there was a stainless drinking water tank which must have been leaking at some time as the rust was bad in places, no where for the moisture to go
Over all I am pleased with the lack of rust in the main frame so far, I would like to think that this wet area would be the worst
The area where the toilet was is about 1200L x 750W x 1200 H and my plan is to use it as my electrical room. It is in the centre of the bus and I will keep the electric door to service it.
The plan is for at least 500 A/h 24Volt battery pack, a SuperCombi 3000Watt inverter and the outdoor unit of a 5 kva multi-inverter split system to be housed in that area
I intend to line and seal the area off from the rest of the bins and to have a fan that will suck in air from the front under the floor and exhaust it at the rear under the floor
I have found a small 6.5 kva Diesel inverter generator that I am planning to fit into the engine bay which will be controlled auto from the SuperCombi inverter

I do have a plan drawn up but will have to tidy it up before I publish it here. Basically the plan is to cut off about 2.1 metres at the rear for a narrow double bed, a combination shower toilet, and a small 110/140 litre fridge and microwave. Really just somewhere to sleep.I want to keep that area behind the rear wheels to keep my weight in the right place

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Croc » Mon Sep 17, 2012 10:27 pm

Thanks for the update Kevin,

Many of these coaches have a postive pressure fan in the luggage area that is intended to keep the dust out. I can't recall if this vehicle has or not - but this might be a handy thing to find.

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Tue Sep 18, 2012 7:39 pm

Yeah Croc it does have bin pressure that I think I will keep for whenever I go onto a gravel road, should be good

I have done some more work today and this is what the area where the toilet used to be looks like
Image

This is the area that I have been talking about for the batteries and inverter
I will have to get some 40mm RHS so that I cant cut out a bit of rust and replace a cross brace that I cut out

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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby outbackjack » Sat Jul 06, 2013 6:28 pm

What happen to this??
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Re: Coach for a Tooltruck?

Postby Toolman » Sun Jul 07, 2013 7:34 pm

I have been working on it but do not have as much spare time as I would like

Seats out:
Image


Genset mounted into engine bay

Image

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