C A S C A D E
Is our 1995 International Amtran 3800 school bus that we now call home! We picked her up from the Bend, OR school district, with just over 330k miles, after having bought her on auction for $4,091. Under her hood is a DT466 all mechanical diesel motor with an Allison MT643 automatic transmission. Admittedly I asked Kyle for all that technical vehicle lingo you just read because let’s be honest, my strength is the aesthetics not the mechanics.
So what in the world prompted our decision to live in a school bus? Simple, we love to travel, but we also love our 11 year old miniature dachshund, Cake. Also known as Sugarbear, Shugs, Shoogies, Shugnight Shyamalan, Shugnasty, Shugs & Spice… you get the point, we really like giving our dog nicknames. We reserve her actual name, Cupcake, for times when she poops in the house which is basically every morning in winter, but I digress. After spending 3 weeks away from her, traveling through Europe, Kyle and I arrived home determined to make a life for ourselves that fed our deep travel addiction but allowed us to do it with Cake in tow. Our plan is really NOT to have a plan, but we hope to make it to Canada, Mexico, South America, and through the States of course.
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t h e c o n v e r s i o n
It’s taken nearly 2 years to turn a $4 K school bus into Cascade, our home on wheels! We started by completely gutting the interior, brown vinyl seats, rubber gum floors and all. We removed all of the original side windows, sheet metaled over and installed rv windows. We rewired the entire electrical system, removed the wheelchair lift as well as 1 of 3 emergency doors and replaced the emergency ceiling hatch with a Maxx air fan. The existing ceiling, side panels and flooring were removed to re-insulate the bus. Then we built a new sub-floor, reinstalled the original metal ceiling panels, upgraded the drivers seat, replaced the main door with an RV door, installed plumbing for the propane and water systems, built a roof rack the entire length of our 27’ bus to house our 1200 watt solar panels and a super rad deck that doubles as a place to hammock. Inside we have a fully functioning shower, sink, oven, fridge, and Cubic Mini wood burning stove as well as our queen bed.
When we made the decision to buy a tiny home on wheels we subsequently made the decision to throw any ideas we had of a conventional life out the window. We look forward to slowing down and living a life of intentionality through travel. It’s going to be a wild freakin’ ride and we’d love for you to follow along!