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  #1  
Old 05-04-2020
Redeyedtreefr0g's Avatar
Redeyedtreefr0g Redeyedtreefr0g is offline
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Location: Central FL
Posts: 129
Talking The life of BLUB the 1972 BLUeBird bus

This thread will be a running commentary of the life of Blub, my new-to-me bus as my husband Jamie and I explore, clean, fix, and make it mine.

After trying to start, but failing, Blub was towed to our home. It sat for a little while as we did other projects.
I've cleaned out the garbage slowly. This morning our garbagemen emptied the last of the comforters, scratched-up teflon pots, mildewed VCR and other random stuff into their truck. Bye-bye junk!

We rebuilt the carburetor yesterday. Today we tried to start the bus, but the batteries quickly proved that they were exhausted and not up to the task. Not really surprising because I've seen the red clock and thermometer blinking in the bus the whole time. Surely other things are stealing power also... The engine acted like it wanted to run, but stopped firing as soon as the key sprung back. We looked and failed to find a resistor and coil.... also our battery charger is under high suspicion.

We took Blub's face off, which was fun, and I got to see the back end of the accelerator pedal and discovered the foot vent. We put the face back on.

We opened up the awning with tremendous difficulty. To be honest- Jamie muscled the travel locks open forcefully. I do not have enough body weight to yank open the awning either. The front arm worked perfectly and raised the awning up all the way. The rear arm is seized and refuses to extend. Now some comments as we were initially checking out the bus make sense. There is a tiny wheel at the top of the door to roll under the sagging fabric. There is an arc worn into it already, and the center seam has been broken and will need restitching. Someone taped brown duct tape up there. Maybe sitting overnight with PB blaster will convince the aluminum tubes to free up. I bet if I stitch from top to bottom and control the unrolling, I could sew up that gap easily.

It was a decent day- not great, but still fun.

QUESTIONS:
  • Where are my coil and resistor (with the pink wire) located?
  • If everything were functioning correctly, could I plug the shore powercord in and have electricity to the bus... and would this keep the batteries charged up and useful?
  • Is it better to ask these kinds of questions here, or in the FC (Forward Control Unique Issues) forum, or where...?

If you can help, you're awesome! Thank you. If not, thanks for tagging along on this adventure, I hope you're as entertained following along as I am happy in bumbling my happy way around this bus!
__________________
Aimee and Jamie live in Deland area Florida
1972 Wanderlodge named BLUB
(hydraulic brakes, Ford 391 gas engine)
froggyaimee@gmail.com


Last edited by Redeyedtreefr0g; 05-04-2020 at 08:27 PM. Reason: added year
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  #2  
Old 05-04-2020
Randy Dupree's Avatar
Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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Keep your thread right here,and keep posting.
we love projects,but we need pics.
Without pics it never happened!
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2000 LXI 43
Bainbridge,Ga.
Port St Joe Fl.
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  #3  
Old 05-04-2020
Redeyedtreefr0g's Avatar
Redeyedtreefr0g Redeyedtreefr0g is offline
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Talking

Pictures
(I'm really AWFUL at using phones like computers, but I don't have a regular camera anymore, so pictures are taken with the phone. Whenever I can I try to use a real computer to type, so I might post a reply and then add the photos rather than try to type the whole message in by phone.)
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Aimee and Jamie live in Deland area Florida
1972 Wanderlodge named BLUB
(hydraulic brakes, Ford 391 gas engine)
froggyaimee@gmail.com

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  #4  
Old 05-04-2020
Bob Horner Bob Horner is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: McLouth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redeyedtreefr0g View Post
This thread will be a running commentary of the life of Blub, my new-to-me bus as my husband Jamie and I explore, clean, fix, and make it mine.

After trying to start, but failing, Blub was towed to our home. It sat for a little while as we did other projects.
I've cleaned out the garbage slowly. This morning our garbagemen emptied the last of the comforters, scratched-up teflon pots, mildewed VCR and other random stuff into their truck. Bye-bye junk!

We rebuilt the carburetor yesterday. Today we tried to start the bus, but the batteries quickly proved that they were exhausted and not up to the task. Not really surprising because I've seen the red clock and thermometer blinking in the bus the whole time. Surely other things are stealing power also... The engine acted like it wanted to run, but stopped firing as soon as the key sprung back. We looked and failed to find a resistor and coil.... also our battery charger is under high suspicion.

We took Blub's face off, which was fun, and I got to see the back end of the accelerator pedal and discovered the foot vent. We put the face back on.

We opened up the awning with tremendous difficulty. To be honest- Jamie muscled the travel locks open forcefully. I do not have enough body weight to yank open the awning either. The front arm worked perfectly and raised the awning up all the way. The rear arm is seized and refuses to extend. Now some comments as we were initially checking out the bus make sense. There is a tiny wheel at the top of the door to roll under the sagging fabric. There is an arc worn into it already, and the center seam has been broken and will need restitching. Someone taped brown duct tape up there. Maybe sitting overnight with PB blaster will convince the aluminum tubes to free up. I bet if I stitch from top to bottom and control the unrolling, I could sew up that gap easily.

It was a decent day- not great, but still fun.

QUESTIONS:
  • Where are my coil and resistor (with the pink wire) located?
  • If everything were functioning correctly, could I plug the shore powercord in and have electricity to the bus... and would this keep the batteries charged up and useful?
  • Is it better to ask these kinds of questions here, or in the FC (Forward Control Unique Issues) forum, or where...?

If you can help, you're awesome! Thank you. If not, thanks for tagging along on this adventure, I hope you're as entertained following along as I am happy in bumbling my happy way around this bus!
Love reading your post, you are a very creative writer. Not something that I am good at.
__________________
Bob Horner
McLouth, KS
1985 PT40
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  #5  
Old 05-04-2020
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Mike Hohnstein Mike Hohnstein is offline
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Well, on the positive side, you could paint it with a brush to make it better.
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  #6  
Old 05-04-2020
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Redeyedtreefr0g Redeyedtreefr0g is offline
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Where do you guys get parts? We've already learned Autozone has no idea what a Bluebird even is. My school bus mechanics may be on furlough as well, as the fleet manager hasn't responded to an email yet... I'm going to need to unseize this right brake, probably give Blub new brakes, and it would be awesome to change out the 2-piece widowmaker rims while everything is apart.
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Aimee and Jamie live in Deland area Florida
1972 Wanderlodge named BLUB
(hydraulic brakes, Ford 391 gas engine)
froggyaimee@gmail.com

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  #7  
Old 05-04-2020
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Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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well it all depends on what parts.
All of the normal parts places will be little to no help.
NAPA,if they have a counter guy with gray hair may be of some help.
Heavy duty truck parts places can sell you wheels.
But,as i cautioned you before,before you buy any tries and wheels,make sure you can find brake parts.


I have connections going back 40 years in the truck parts business and they will not even attempt to find hydraulic brake parts.
Their suppliers just don't have the stuff.


The internet will be your best bet,vintage brake parts,if you have part numbers you can search that way.
Plan on:


all rubber hoses
brake boosters
wheel cylinders,2 per wheel i think,so 8 total.
Master cylinder.


This will not be easy,or fast,or cheap.


The shops i worked in in the 70's would not work on Hydraulic brakes,when some of this stuff was almost new!
We had some good parts guys back in those days,they are still around (not working in the parts stores anymore)
The guys that could find that stuff are all old,retired,or dead.


I would say,that parts may be easier to get today than back then,the internet will be your friend.


Should i post this?
I think i should.
Get the bad news over with.
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email me at randy@randydupree.com only.

Randy Dupree
2000 LXI 43
Bainbridge,Ga.
Port St Joe Fl.
www.buybyebluebird.com

randy@randydupree.com
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  #8  
Old 05-04-2020
Bob Horner Bob Horner is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: McLouth
Posts: 600
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redeyedtreefr0g View Post
Where do you guys get parts? We've already learned Autozone has no idea what a Bluebird even is. My school bus mechanics may be on furlough as well, as the fleet manager hasn't responded to an email yet... I'm going to need to unseize this right brake, probably give Blub new brakes, and it would be awesome to change out the 2-piece widowmaker rims while everything is apart.
If you can't find brake parts you can have your shoes relined, also is you don't have any luck with wheels cylinders you can have them resleeved. If they are not pitted to bad, you can hone the and try and find pistons and seals by bore size. Nobody stocks parts anymore, in years past I could walk in to napa and they would have a drawer full of wheel cylinder parts, you would just match something that would work.
I would work my way around the brake drum that is stuck with a big hammer, shoe is probably rusted to the drum.
I'm sure there will be those that have a different opinion, but at least you can get some conversation going that may be of use.
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1985 PT40
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  #9  
Old 05-04-2020
GEEZER GEEZER is offline
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Am I mistaken or did I read about someone converting one of these old gassers to air brakes? Guess that may require a donor coach. Was it maybe Curt Springer maybe.
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  #10  
Old 05-04-2020
Randy Dupree's Avatar
Randy Dupree Randy Dupree is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GEEZER View Post
Am I mistaken or did I read about someone converting one of these old gassers to air brakes? Guess that may require a donor coach. Was it maybe Curt Springer maybe.
Yes,its been done.
all you need is another bus to get everything off of!
Axles,foot valve,park valve,air compressor,a mile of air hose.
And then what?
You have an accident and the insurance people sue your butts off.
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email me at randy@randydupree.com only.

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2000 LXI 43
Bainbridge,Ga.
Port St Joe Fl.
www.buybyebluebird.com

randy@randydupree.com
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