SchoolBus - AKA Sparkles the bus

So after going to Burning Man in 2012 we decided we wanted to go bigger for 2013. What better way than to get a school bus... We did a bunch of research and decided we really wanted a transit style (flat front) bus. The other requirement was that it needed to be less than 26 feet so it would fit between the lift and the door at the shop. We ended up finding the perfect bus seen below. It is a 1993 BlueBird Handybus. It has a Cummins 6BT turbo diesel with an Alison transmission. We got it in October 2012 and you can see all we have done so far on it. The plan is to complete the railing and bar on the deck ahead of burning man so we have a fun bar with a view when we are there for everyone to enjoy.

The name Sparkles cames from the 3 pounds of glitter (flake) in the paint. The photos don't do the flake paint job justice. In person it is very clear why we call her Sparkles.

It isn't a VW but couldn't resist painting it up like one. That is an official chrome VW emblem that we had kicking around the shop. That makes it official doesn't it?

Here it is working on the deck before got the railing installed.

Here is the ladder/stairs before the railing was installed. The plan is that the stairs will go up the back.

The couches and dinette turned out nice. The giraffe print is fun.

Here is it with the interior nearly done.

The interior is really taking shape. The 50's style aluminum trim around the counter tops turned out really nice. The giraffe print cushions are coming along and we have a lot of them done with just a few to go.

The sub box got covered in vinyl and also got a top with the aluminum trim.

Here are the forward seating areas. They have storage under then and the one on the driver side will fold out to make a bigger bed. They are both over 7ft so they will both make a comfortable place to sleep. Padding is all high density foam.

Installing the heater so it didn't look too bad required a lot of metal work. Problem is it ended up being right in the middle of one of the ribbed strips running down the side of the bus.

Once it is painted to match it should look nice.

Speaker pods have 2 6.5" speakers in each of them. They are basic 1/2" MDF covered in vinyl. There are speaker pods in the front and the back so 8 6.5" speakers total

Picked up some polished 22.5 inch Alcoa's on craigslist for a great price. Can't want to get these installed.

They are a major improvement over the stock steel wheels.

The speaker box is mostly done now. It has 2 15" kicker dual voice coil subs that will be powered by a 1000 watt Punch amp. Should be some very big sound.

All new floor installed. Now on to the fun stuff.

Here is Max helping remove hardware in preparation for removing the floor. I was likely under the bus holding the nut while max used the ratchet from inside. He was a huge help.

After all the old floor was removed, cleaned, sanded and painted as we started putting new floor down. Max is relaxing on top of the sawhorse.

First step was to remove all the seats. Once we removed them we found out the plywood floor was nasty and needed replaced. This was a big job and Max and Ashley both were a huge help. Here is Ashley grinding off floor bolts while Max supervises. The plywood was soggy and was easier to pry up than to try and remove the rusty bolts that held it in so after it was out the bolts needed ground off. Nice thing is below the nasty plywood floor there was solid 16 gauge or thicker sheet metal.