FilXeno wrote:I have been tentatively looking into purchasing a school bus for my band to tour in. Is there any reasons this would be a bad idea (as opposed to a cheap Ford Van)>?
Hopefully we'll get responses from people who know something about the band touring business, but I can think of just two possible problems right away, and they are both solvable.
The first is cruising speed.
School buses are generally intended for slow driving, with steep rear axle gearing. So, for hammering long distances from gig to gig, you may need to have the rear end changed to a higher ratio (lower number), which would cost a bit of money.
An other way to increase top speed is to raise the engine's governed speed, which would cost less. Typically, school bus engines are governed far below redline. But higher RPMs usually means worse fuel milage, so in the long run, a rear end change would perhaps cost less.
As for fuel milage in general, a diesel bus might very well equal, or even better, a gasoline van.
A great advantage to a bus is that you would have room for bunks and/or reclining chairs for the band members to rest while in transit. Myself, I cannot sleep in a bed in a moving vehicle, but I think a Lazy-Boy, firmly bolted to the floor, might work.
Which brings us to the other possible issue:
For so much driving and resting, I would suggest lining the interior with lots of carpeting, to dampen noise. It's kind'a loud in a school bus what with the all-metal interior surfaces.
Let's see.... You would want to install some secure door locks, since school buses usually have no locks at all. Some stout hasps and padlocks schould do it.