This is Part 2 in the series How to Make a School Bus a Home.

If you missed Part 1 you will find it here.

How to Make a School Bus a Home Part 2

It took Jeff and members of our family only a few days to complete Part 1 of the bus build.  However, I held up progress because I couldn’t decide on what windows I wanted to keep and which ones to cover up. (If you notice in the photos below, there is blue tape on some windows. This tape reminds us which windows will get covered up by insulation.)
 Then, there was the day that I decided to change the floor plan around because the space between the shower and toilet area looked too small. This bus unlike Bus #1, will have a Master Bedroom with a bathroom.  The shower and toilet/sink area will be separate to allow one person to take a shower and someone else to be on the toilet if need be.  In our large family, anything that I can do to reduce waiting in line for the toilet is a huge plus.  I don’t like to wait on a teenager to finish showering when I have to go to the bathroom. Do you have this problem in your house?  Well, hopefully this floor plan will reduce the times I have to wait.
Anyway, I thought we needed more space between the shower and bathroom. So, Jeff had to take down a wall and shorten the bathroom area after he already was finished with the bathroom. He wasn’t too happy about changing it but I am sure he will like the extra space once we are using it everyday.  Jeff is awesome! (I had to throw that in there because he reads the blog. I love you Honey! Thanks for all you do to make me happy.)

Now, onto How to Make a School Bus a Home- PART 2

1. Build the walls.

After you get the floor plan figured out and make all the adjustments, start building the walls. Jeff used 2×2 boards for the walls and secured them to the floor with deck screws.  He built them just like you would build walls for a stick and brick house.
stud the walls

2. Install the wiring and electrical boxes

Jeff and I got together to figure out where we wanted  the light switches and the outlets placed throughout the bus.  It was important for me to have enough outlets for all of Katie’s medical equipment. We ended up with 24 electrical boxes. Jeff used 12/2 wire with ground for the outlets and 14/2 wire with ground for the lights. We will have 30amp service when the bus is complete.
 outlet boxes

3. Insulate the walls

Jeff found these Styrofoam insulation sheets for free on Craigslist.org . They were 2×3 sheets and were 1/2 inch thick. Jeff would call out the measurement that he needed and Jacob would measure and cut the insulation sheet for Jeff. Hannah and Jeff would slide the sheets in between the bus wall and the studs. That is until Hannah got bored and left Jeff to finish the walls by himself. All the walls have 3 sheets of Styrofoam insulation. In addition, the bus walls were already insulated behind the metal.
 hannah

4. Insulate the Windows

Jeff covered the inside of each window with the Styrofoam insulation sheets. He put 4 sheets on each window.

 

install electrical

5. Secure the Insulation

Jeff taped all the insulation together with masking tape to secure it until the walls were built.
install plumbing

6. Install the Plumbing

The above picture is the only picture I took while Jeff was plumbing the bus.  He used Pex Pipe to plumb the bus. The plumbing for the shower, toilet, bathroom sink, washer, and kitchen sink have all been finished. He will be installing the black and grey tanks soon.
Part 2 of Do You Want To Live In A School Bus took Jeff and family several weeks to finish. Jeff had several other things he was working on during this part of the build and I had to be away from home because Katie needed to have surgery on her hip.
If you want to read more Part 3 in this series will explain how Jeff put up the walls, installed the shower, finished the bathroom, put in the breaker box and more.
If you don’t want to miss a blog post you can subscribe by entering your email in the box to the right. As always, if you have a question or comment just leave them and Jeff will answer you.

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2017-07-15T22:06:31+00:00

9 Comments

  1. Deb August 24, 2015 at 3:03 am - Reply

    Love these posts! We are a family of 8 and have been full timing for over 3 years now. None of us are very handy with building but are just wannabes. My 13 year old dreams of doing something like this- maybe should hang out with y'all. Also liked your blog on God's provision. The only reason we can keep going this long is that we see God's miraculous provision practically daily. It's glorious every time.

  2. discoveringus August 25, 2015 at 2:05 am - Reply

    Deb, We love meeting new families while we are full timing. Comment back to me when you we see we have moved into our bus. We will see if we are near each other and meet up. If you have a blog, leave it in my comment box. I enjoy reading about other families who are as adventurous as us. Travel blessings to you and your family.

  3. Deb August 25, 2015 at 2:39 am - Reply

    I'll do that. Our blog is desertrainblog.com

  4. Carla Bright January 17, 2016 at 3:53 pm - Reply

    Hi! I find your blog very helpful, and would like to follow! I’m currently looking for a shorty, preferably diesel International dognose. I’d like to convert it for myself and two small dogs.

    • discoveringus January 17, 2016 at 9:29 pm - Reply

      Welcome Carla. Our blog is a work in process. If you go to the Our Bus tab, then Bus Construction, then to the post about “Do you need to Paint a School Bus”, I have a freebie listed. When you sign up for the freebie, you will be able to follow us and get all future freebies that I put on the blog. Hopefully, this week I will have a sign up on our home page which will make following us easy. My husband is happy to answer any questions about converting buses and has suggestions on where to purchase. Email us if we can help you find or convert a shorty.

  5. Cindy Hoffman February 25, 2016 at 4:07 am - Reply

    This is really amazing, never seen anything like this. but the of making a cozy home from a bus is just ingenious and something that I would love to try one day myself. I also followed up on your first post and you guys just make the whole thing so simple and make me want to start, now I am trying to think, where do i get a dead bus? Anyways, thanks a lot for the inspiration and keep up the great work.

    Cindy

    • discoveringus February 26, 2016 at 12:28 am - Reply

      Hi Cindy, Thanks a bunch for your kind words. When you get ready to start building your bus, just let us know. We can help you find one that will fit your needs, even convert it for you if you would like. We appreciate you following along with us and commenting.

  6. Rene September 10, 2016 at 10:41 am - Reply

    There was no hyperlink from part 1 to this page. I copied the name of the article into my browser and searched it to find it. Thought you might want to know. Very interesting and helpful information! Thanks for posting all your adventures and experiences!

    • discoveringus September 10, 2016 at 5:17 pm - Reply

      Rene, thanks for letting me know. It is fixed now. I really appreciate you taking the time to comment. Glad you found our blog helpful. If you are interested in the Skoolie lifestyle, I hang out in a Facebook Group called Four Wheels and a Bra. It is just open to womwen who love to travel, and camp whether in a skoolie, van, RV or tent. However, there are several women who live or want to live in a converted school bus in the group. Here is the link https://www.facebook.com/groups/1564363513865112/

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