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Bus Tiny Home Conversion Part Two

the wild drive bus conversion tiny home

The Wild Drive #buslife Recap Part Two – Mad Max Prison Bus, anyone?

Sure! We’ll have a look-see.

We drove an hour and a half down to MA to meet our… prison bus. We pulled into the parking lot and caught a glimpse of the 31 foot beast in all its glory: faded black paint, bars on the windows, square-ish front end with a mustard yellow Chevy symbol.

Ahh, our future home sweet home!

prison bus conversion tiny home project the wild drive
Post-apocalyptic looking on the outside, full of potential on the inside!

We met the owner and he gave us a pretty entertaining tour of the bus, inside and out. We liked him right away. He was such a character; a hobbyist, business owner, mechanic, builder, collector, and pretty slick salesman. He was even on an episode of American Pickers.

He started the bus and took us for a ride in town. My doubtful expectations were shut down immediately as we effortlessly zoomed (I say zoom, but maybe trot is a better word?) through the back roads around town. This thing rides like a dream! How is this happening?!

bus tiny home driver's seat conversion
First thing I did was open and close the door a bunch of times. Childhood dream, realized.

Ben drove it too. We both fell in love with our crazy bus and started to see the potential. Kevin said to us that day, “You won’t have any problem inspecting this thing, trust me.” We hoped that he was right but we know now for a fact that he was. He knew this was a good bus.

He said he put it up for sale and turned down a lot of people who planned to strip it for parts. He wanted to sell it to someone who wanted to convert it, like he would have. We drove back to his shop, talked, negotiated a price, shook hands, and said we’ll be back in a week to pick her up.

Just like that.

We realized on the way home, “Woah, we’re really buying a bus.”

Doubts whispered in my ear here and there over the week but we couldn’t deny the great condition and value of the bus. Yes, it was a little scary looking but it had mountains of character and very little rust due to its life outside of New England. We know now how CRUCIAL this element is when you’re looking for a bus to convert into a skoolie. BEWARE OF RUST.

school bus tiny home conversion
Here we go…

Sometimes I can be too logical of a thinker and decision maker.

This is one of the reasons why I’m so thankful to have Ben’s creative dreamer side to balance things out. Being married to your best friend freakin’ rocks, let me tell you. He KNEW we could make this work, and work well. We talked facts, we talked possibilities, and it calmed me down about this whole venture. We knew we could sell some of the parts when we gut everything out. The generator was worth what we were paying for the entire bus. The tires were in excellent condition (those things aren’t cheap!), and so much more. This was a win.

Dreaming and planning without action can be frustrating and discouraging.

Admittedly, we were cautious after two years of serious buckle down mode while we paid off our student loans. We almost forgot how it felt to boldly want something and decide to just go for it. Now we had the flexibility to do just that. It was liberating then and it’s liberating now to make our own funky ass choices without fear of failure. We knew in our hearts right then and there that this was OUR way.

We wanted this adventure and were excited to see where it led.

the wild drive school bus tiny home
Day one: must take a picture on the roof of the bus.

Get alllll caught up in our prison bus tiny home conversion process:

Part One – Debt Annihilation

Part Two – Mad Max prison bus, anyone? 

Part Three – Work, work, and inspiration!

Part Four – Then & Now

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