The girlfriend and I made a run down to Hollister Hills SVRA, so we could get sometime in on the dirtbikes. The bus worked very well! Even got an old high school friend to come out and join us on the trails!
During our trip down to Hollister I found that the passenger door opening mechanisms were vibrating alot. Looking it over the last 2 days, I found fasteners loose, a poor repair by the school district and just poor supporting. After taking some measurements, I was able to shorten the length by 3.5" and still keep it easy to operate. Only the length of the arm shortened, the supports did not have to move, which means that the 18" hanging past the last supports no longer have as much leverage. I also tightened everything up, so there shouldnt be any drafts coming thru and the road noise might be lowered. After I took care of all that I lubed all the freshly cleaned moving joints and then adding a little moto geek "bling"! Added bonus is now having easy access to all the cupholders and cubbies on top of the doghouse!
I spent most of April in Honduras and Belize having wonderful adventures. When I returned to find pure chaos with in the company I work for, which means long hours and little free time. Fortunately, this makes my bank account fat and happy.
So little progress has happened on this project. A couple of us took our motos to SheetIron 2016 in the bus and it worked very well!
I made a deal with Happykamper via the For Sale section on this site and I now have a brand new Engel MT60! Happykamper even delivered it to my door! Such awesome people on this site!
Not alot has happened with the bus lately. The last few months I was working too much, then went on a long ride from Oakland to Eureka to Vancouver, WA to Seattle to British Columbia and back. During that ride I sent the bus to Left Coast Diesel to look it over, they cleared the codes, fixed a faulty switch and installed a new Banks muffler, sounds great!
Yesterday I took the taillights out and installed new ones. Just gotta finish the left side today.
The extra red running lights and the old reverse lights will be going away.
Well, I've been working on the rear lighting a few hours at a time.
Mostly, I just wanted brighter lights that were less prone to damage, so I went with LEDs from superbriteleds.com. I did alot of bodyfilling with epoxy, so it would last. All the old mounting holes got filled and the huge crack in the upper left corner got repaired. I thought I was all done with it until I got into buliding the bumper, that was until I drove it last night and did a walk around first. It seems when I have the taillights on and turn the clearance lights on, the voltage gets too low for the tail/run lights. So it seems they have the 2 circuits tyed together, sometime soon I will have to go thru the wiring diagram and find the link. Hopefully I can separate it.
Here is part of the plan for the rear bumper.
For a bit, the bumper will be pushed 16" out to the rear, this will give the jerry cans 10" for their carrier and 6" beyond to walk on. I might change to NATO Jerry cans, I can fit (3)5gallon cans on each side vs (2) on each side of the moto style cans. The only real concern is that I own 4 of the moto style and would have to buy the NATO style, which at 6 x $30-$50, ends up $180-300 plus the mounts! But it would allow me to carry 30 gallons of liquids, that can be changed up. 30 gallons of diesel or gas or water or whatever mix seems appropriate for the trip.
The long term plan is a tube bumper, extended 16" topped in diamond plate. Can mounts on both sides, folding ramp covering the door and (3) 2" receivers (center for trailer, corners for moto rack, Vise, BBQ or other large tools
Well, finally getting back to this project... heading to San Felipe, Mexico in May, with a few motos in the back.
Last week it went into A1 Spring in Oakland, CA. They are a reputable shop that has been around for decades. I took it to them for info and help, the front end sits very low compared to the back, in my opinion. So they confirmed the front springs were the correct ones and nothing wrong with them, I was kinda hoping they just needed new springs installed to level it out. The serious rake is correct for its previous life, hauling roughly 40 (~100 lbs) kids all day, everyday. They came up with a good solution to get rid of the hopping/skipping in the rear when empty. They removed one of the 10 leaves and flipped a few over, which then turned the heavy single stage spring pack into a softer 2 stage pack. It immediately feels much easier to drive around town. The only change in height was the thickness of the removed leaf, a 1/4" roughly, since its a Spring Over Axle set up They also replaced all of the bushings in the springs. Once the rear springs were taken care of, per my request, they used a jack to lift the front to a levelish point and got a 3'-3.5" measurement.This ran $450, just for reference.
I contacted WeldTec Designs in El Cahon, CA. After a couple discussions, I decided on their "Ocotillo Cruiser (4") front lift". Which sounds like on this heavy of a vehicle should result in 2"-3" of lift. The Fox Shocks on all 4 corners should really help the ride alot!
I have a friend over at Bruce's Tire in Fremont, CA. Their shop does alot of commercial truck tires and suspension, so it'll head there soon for the lift kit install, alignment and tires. The plan is to put 31"-32" All Terrains!