They Bought An Old School Bus. What They Did With It Will Make You Jealous.
For all you road warriors out there looking for something a little different than the traditional RV, you may want to check out the ‘skoolie.’ Skoolies are old, yellow school buses transformed into recreational vehicles.
Eight graduating students from Notre Dame college decided to purchase a 20-year-old bus and restore it into a cozy traveling vessel that they took on a road trip across the United States. Only one person in the group of eight had any previous construction experience. Nonetheless, everyone took roles to complete the project. The bus boasts bunk beds, a fridge, booth with seats, couches, a stove, and sink.
The group just completed a five-and-a-half week journey traveling like rockstars to places like the Grand Canyon, Yosemite National Park, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Dallas, St. Louis, and Louisville.
Here's the photo story of their journey in the SerendipitiBus:
A group of friends and I converted this 20-year-old school bus...
...into this luxury RV for 8+: The SerendipitiBus!
Back in August 2014 after the first trimester of our masters entrepreneurship program, the idea of converting a school bus into an RV was thrown out amongst myself and three classmates. We quickly discovered the "skoolie" community online and were instantly hooked.
We kicked the idea around for the next couple months until we found this beauty on craigslist in October: 1995 Carpenter school bus, 40 feet long, diesel engine, killer paint job. A couple emails and a 20 minute drive later and we were suddenly the proud owners of a bus (with nowhere to park it)!
Over the next seven months, we managed to convince four more classmates to join us and spent what little free time we had converting the bus. Our crew was quite worldly (with riders coming from Ireland, Texas, New York, Wisconsin, Maryland, and Virginia) and despite only myself having any formal construction experience, everyone stepped up to the plate and took on significant roles in the project.
From left to right: Amy [marketer/blogger extraordinaire], John [plumber/photographer], Dan [detail carpenter/house maid], Sam [interior designer/videographer], Micheal [roof deck builder/sleepyhead], Nicky K [bus dad/painter], Rory [electrician/group optimist], and me (Nick M) [salty dictator].
This album takes you through the construction process first so if you're interested in just the final product, scroll about half way down for the finish photos. You can also check out some great pictures from the 5.5 week journey we took with the bus at facebook.com/serendipitibus.
We bought the bus from Mike (right), an amazing guy who had to put his own skoolie dreams on hold. It was love at first sight for us, and the fact that we could fulfill Mike's dream for him made it all the more worthwhile.
We signed away our souls on the spot with way too little thought or hesitation.
Fortunately for us, Mike had already ripped out the seats, collected some junk furniture, and painted the outside red to change the title to an RV.
We began with the plan on the left but due to many debates during construction, our final bus looked like the plan on the right. It worked extremely well for 8+ people, providing more than enough common space plus individual private bunks for everyone.
We first bolted runners to the floor with rigid insulation between to keep out road heat and noise.
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