I purchased this 1982 Chevrolet, 66 passenger school bus on craigslist for $1,000. It ran well enough to get me home. The gas engine and manual transmission was appealing to me since there is very little to go wrong with it mechanically now that everything is fixed.
It was really ugly and everybody thought I was crazy for buying it. The previous owner used it as a hunting lodge and I had to pretty much gut it and start over. I didn’t include any “Before” photos but I can send some of those if you wish.
The total budget for the project was about $6K. That includes mechanical work that I didn’t do myself.
I was going for a rustic cabin vibe incorporating many of the features we had in our family cabin when I was a child. Since I can’t afford a parcel of land for a weekend getaway, this was a way to work around that financial limitation.
Much of the materials used in the project were re-purposed. The rusty barn tin, coach seats, wood stove and storage chests were all craigslist finds. I made the kitchen cabinet doors from scratch. It features a functioning potbelly stove, a home made composting toilet, bucket sink with hand water pump and custom quilts and upholstery.
There are also two rustic ice chests that I made from old Igloo coolers. I just built cabinet enclosures with 1.5″ of insulation board around them. As a result, they are about as efficient as those expensive Yeti coolers and keep the ice solid for almost a week.
The floor was made with OSB chipboard and finished with a honey stain and five coats of lacquer. Knotty pine was used throughout the open floor plan.
Our family and friends have really been enjoying our vacations with it.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to reach out to me.
Saint Paul, Minnesota