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Old School Bus Makes Low-Cost Flatbed
"We converted a school bus into a round bale hauler and flatbed truck for just $2,100, including the cost of the bus," says Dale McAuley, Welwyn, Sask.
"We started the conversion by removing the body and seats (we now use the body as a shed to store parts). We closed in the body just behind the driver's door with plywood, installing windows (so the driver could see the flatbed) and a door.
"The flat deck is 10 by 30 ft. long. Two 30-ft. long, by 6-in. heavy steel tube beams run the length of the deck with 9-ft., 10-in. long 2-in. by 3 1/2 in. steel beams, spaced every 4 ft., running across the top of them. A 2 by 4-in. steel beam runs around the perimeter, running across the ends of the crosswise 2 by 3 1/2 in. steel beams and across both ends. Tongue and groove 2 by 6-in. planks are laid on top of the steel for flooring. The deck hinges at the 18-ft. mark, with 12 ft. hanging over the rear. A 3 1/2 in. double acting cylinder (48 in. long) raises at the front of the deck for loading and unloading.
"For hydraulics, we mounted a pto on the transmission and hooked a rotor pump to the pto. The hydraulic oil reserve and the hydraulic controls are mounted inside the cab beside the driver's seat, enabling the driver to raise and lower the flatbed while driving. We mounted tail and brake lights on the back of the frame.
"We use the bus-truck for hauling machinery and buildings. During seeding, we put a 1,250 gal. tank on and use it to haul liquid fertilizer and water. But its main use is for hauling round bales. On short trips we load it with 10 round bales, five on either side. The bales ride tight together and are not tied down even at speeds of 50 to 55 mph. On longer trips, we haul 16 to 18 bales by double stacking.
"Any FARM SHOW readers interested in seeing this bus-truck, which my brother, father and I built, are welcome to stop by," says Dale.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Dale McAuley, Box 128, Welwyn, Sask,. SOA 4L0 Canada.

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1983 - Volume #7, Issue #3