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Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 10:53 a.m.

OK boys and girls, it's time to get this party started.

Meet SanFord. She is a 1956 Ford B-600 bus chassis with a Wayne bus body. Some of you followed the 28 page saga of retrieving this from Wisconsin and driving it to South Carolina. If you missed it, it's here: The Bus Thread!

I had been looking at buses for a while with the intent to do an RV conversion. I liked the looks of the vintage buses but had passed on them because there aren't any on the east coast and what I did find didn't run. RossD posted a picture of this in the hotlink thread, and it checked most of the boxes. It ran, drove, and was only 1000 miles from home.

I'm still not sure what direction this project is going, but I'm leaning toward just restoring it with some modern touches for reliability and comfort. It will be diesel powered at some future point, but for now the BB Ford will be staying and I will concentrate on the body and interior.

Be forewarned, this is not going to be a fast project. It's going to be time consuming and expensive. I'll get tired of screwing with it and take months off. I will also be trying to keep it in usable condition, which will mean long periods of nothing followed by a flurry of activity.

We have to start somewhere, so we started by cleaning out the bus and figuring out exactly what it came with. When I bought it, I didn't do a complete inventory because for the price paid, I figured everything else was just a bonus.

It turns out it was a pretty good bonus. Here is the list.

2 camp stoves

1 RV stove/oven.

2 12V RV range hoods with vent fans and lights.

2 SS Sinks, one kitchen, one bath.

1 RV rooftop air conditioner.

3 RV leveling jacks.

1 extra water heater.

1 extra RV direct vent furnace.

1 complete set of bath water fixtures, shower and sink.

1 side mount RV awning with side curtains.

2 extra water pumps.

1 set of electric RV steps.

1 20 ton bottle jack.

1 mummified rat.

2 swallows of Jonnie Walker Red. (I'll probably need a lot more of this before the end.)

This list doesn't include all the RV fixtures that are mounted in the bus. It already has a water heater, stove/oven, furnace, water pump, and water fixtures installed.

More to come.

Kia_Racer Dork
2/6/16 11:03 a.m.

Dang, you made out like a bandit.

I can't wait to see where this goes.

Doc Brown
Doc Brown Dork
2/6/16 11:15 a.m.


Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 11:34 a.m.

I'm still a little overwhelmed by the whole thing. There is an amazing amount of work to do here. My tentative plan of attack is going to be:

Roof. Strip, repair dents and rust and prime/seal. The roof currently leaks so this is on the top of the list.

Body. Strip, repair dents and rust and prime/seal.

Then paint the whole thing.

In between the above will be going through all the other systems and seeing what works and what doesn't.

Once the exterior is done, we will move inside.

The carpet on the roof and walls has to go. While I would love to do a wood ceiling, the compound curves, front and back, will make that extremely difficult. The roof will probably end up painted.

I'm pretty sure all the cabinetry will stay. It's in pretty good shape and looks decent.

The floor has to go. It's a big question mark at the moment, but it will be replaced.

Pictures for documentation.

I really liked the garden hose plumbing. That will have to go.

Any thoughts, ideas and suggestions are welcome. I'm still formulating a plan and having never done an RV before.

nocones GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
2/6/16 11:47 a.m.

The Qbert Bathroom wainscoting must stay. It is straight awesome.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 11:56 a.m.

In reply to nocones:

There are a couple of things I would really like to stay. The bathroom walls, the tile counter and table top, the drivers and passenger chairs, and the door. They just seem to fit. Changing any of that to modern pieces, would change the entire feel of the bus. I kind of like the way it feels now.

mndsm MegaDork
2/6/16 12:07 p.m.
nocones wrote: The Qbert Bathroom wainscoting must stay. It is straight awesome.


And i know its overdone as E36 M3, but i really like the patina it has. Any chance of leaving it?

Doc Brown
Doc Brown Dork
2/6/16 12:10 p.m.

first and foremost, you are my hero!

Now I ain't no kind of expert when it comes to motor homes and such, but that restroom is nasty.... although the Qbert thing is awesome.

I think when it comes to plann'n, it may be in your best interest to fix 'ya a throne fit for the king and queen. Something with plenty room and ventilation.

Now I've done said what I came here to say, the rest is up to you.

BrokenYugo UltimaDork
2/6/16 1:02 p.m.

Does the CB work?

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 1:10 p.m.

In reply to Doc Brown:

Only the bottom of the walls would be staying. The top half would get fresh paint. Probably white.

It is fairly tight, but I'm not sure I can make it bigger with the space I have. With a overall length of 28' there isn't a whole lot of room to play with. I'll have to do some studying on that.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 1:12 p.m.

In reply to BrokenYugo:

No clue, but it did come with a spare. CBs are still used a lot with the RV crowd for campground communication, so it will be staying. That's way down the list.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 1:25 p.m.
mndsm wrote: And i know its overdone as E36 M3, but i really like the patina it has. Any chance of leaving it?

If the roof and passenger side looked like the front and drivers side, I'd consider it, as it sits, probably not. I'm going to have to do some fairly extensive repairs on the roof. There is going to be some cutting and welding involved to patch these.

And this rust has to be stopped cold or I'll lose the whole thing.

With that much work going into the roof, I'm not going to try to make it look rustic. It's getting paint and a painted roof wouldn't look right with patina everywhere else.

mazdeuce PowerDork
2/6/16 1:32 p.m.

Is it wrong that I want a nice high resolution picture of the rat so I can cut you one out of vinyl? I've never gotten a mumified rodent in that kind of high quality condition in any of my project cars. I'm sort of jealous.

PEX for the plumbing. Quick, easy to modify in the future, and burst resistant if things ever unexpectedly freeze.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 1:51 p.m.

In reply to mazdeuce:

Here's a couple of links you should be able to download.



They should be 3264 X 2448 and they are on a mostly white background.

And PEX will be the plumbing of choice for this for all the reasons you stated.

bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Dork
2/6/16 2:47 p.m.

I quail at the enormity of your project. My suggesting would be keep it at least as a rudimentary operational camping machine so you don't loose sight of the end goal. And also figure plumbing heating and tanks out first as everything in an RV revolves around them.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 2:50 p.m.

I'v been scratching my head trying to figure out a paint scheme. I'm not sure why this didn't come to me earlier being that it's been dubbed SanFord.

I wonder if I can find some whitewall truck tires...

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 2:51 p.m.

In reply to bearmtnmartin:

Keeping it operational is going to be important.

brad131a4 New Reader
2/6/16 3:54 p.m.

Well If you could get it on bags and looking like the red pickup anything after that is a bonus. I think if you could find some pic's of some 70' campers or rv's that would be a good starting point on what to do on the interior. I'm with making the shower/toilet a little more user friendly in size. Last time I used something remotely that size I was in my early teens and felt claustrophobic then. I wouldn't even want to try it now that I'm in my 50's. As long as you keep it a manual with the engine swap in the future it's still a winner in my book.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 4:06 p.m.

In reply to brad131a4:

Long term plans for power are a 5.9 Cummins and a 5 speed transmission. That will be years from now though.

mazdeuce PowerDork
2/6/16 4:08 p.m.

Pooping in a closet with your whole family on the other side of a paper thin wall is one of the true glories of RVing. Bathroom stalls seem spacious and handicap stalls palatial after that.

Doc Brown
Doc Brown Dork
2/6/16 7:33 p.m.

Its hard to tell, but it looks like the roof only has one layer of paint over the original finish. Is the rest of SanFord like that?

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 7:40 p.m.

In reply to Doc Brown:

I think what we have is school bus yellow, zinc chromate primer, some unknown white. There are some other colors on the front, but that's what the body looks like.

I've about decided to sandblast the roof, spray with Ospho, spray with a rusty metal primer and top coat that with a elastomeric coating. There are several brands out there, but Kool Seal seems to be a favorite among the RV crowd.

mazdeuce PowerDork
2/6/16 7:48 p.m.

Rat pictures downloaded. Photobucket was nice enough to let me know I could get them on holiday cards if I wanted.
I might take a bit of artistic license with the eyes and such, but I think I can get you a pretty cool dead rat sticker out of it. Mrs. Deuce thinks I'm a weirdo.

Dusterbd13 UberDork
2/6/16 7:50 p.m.

The instrument cluster appears to be the normal truck unit. A billet bezel and automakers go great there.

Vintage air.

Lots and lots of insulation.

Bug bomb the E36 M3 out of it before going any further.

Toyman01 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/6/16 7:53 p.m.

In reply to mazdeuce:

That would make quite the holiday card. I'll have to remember that for next Christmas.

And if your wife thinks you're a weirdo, imaging what my wife thinks. Outside on a cold day taking quality pictures of a mummified rat, so another guy can cut them out of vinyl.

Thanks in advance for the stickers.

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