|So I guess you are wondering WHY?!?! well this project has been a dream of mine since I became an Auburn fan way back when. I always wanted to convert a bus to a tailgating machine and this is where this bus comes into play.
The bus is a 1971 GMC "new look" fishbowl bus, it used to be a transit bus in Alberta Canada, from there it moved to Chicago as a transit bus, then moved to Nevada and then to Phoenix where it was purchased from the previous owner. It has since gone a complete overhaul and we have added many things that I am sure you are aware of.
I found the bus in Phoenix Arizona and I knew I had to have it. It was sitting in an empty parking lot next to the largest indoor go kart track in the world. The bus smelled awful the first time I went to pick it up, it was used as a party bus for bands that came to shows at the go kart track. Needless to say it smelled smoky.
The day I picked up the bus I found my mechanic through the owner of the bus. His name is Chuck and without his help this bus would of never made it back from Arizona to its new home in Auburn. He worked on the bus for nearly 2 months trying to get it roadworthy. The temperature outside where Chuck was working in reached 115 degrees almost every day.
From Chuck's home in Phoenix we finally moved the bus to Payson, Az where I was living. There I did some interior work on the bus along with some more mechanical work with Chuck. The drive from Phoenix to Payson was LONG! it usually takes about an hour and a half in a regular vehicle but this time it took two and a half hours. We lost an airbag, we overheated, we did all kinds of things but it got us to where it would sit for the next few weeks.
On August 13th we woke up early Chuck, my mother and myself. We went to the gas station to fill up the bus and the truck and headed towards Heber. The road from Payson to Heber is a challenge for any car. Its a 7 percent grade that runs about 17 miles so needless to say it was a slow process. We got to Heber and I knew if it made it that far it was going to make it the rest of the way. It didn't.
Right before we got into Albuquerque, NM the damn thing decided it would overheat again so we had to stop. This overheating continued for about 400 to 500 miles through New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma. In Oklahoma we finally stopped at a flying J truck stop and put it in the shop. The mechanic there replaced all the hoses, lubed the chassy and did many other minor repairs that had to be done. He was an Auburn fan so he decided he wasn't going to charge us.
After driving 1752 miles we got to Auburn, Al. For those of you familiar with the area the exit for college street is Exit 51 off interstate 85. As soon as we went over the overpass the inside right tire blew!!!!!!!!!!! After all this time it decided to break down 4 miles from my house!??!?!! honestly I was so mad I couldn't help but laugh. We had 4 spare tires so we took it to the shop and got it fixed.
I took Chuck to the airport the next day and bid him a farewell and still to this day talk to him about twice a week. He'll be a longtime friend and member of the tiger prowler crew.