Off-Grid Cabin Skoolie
Hey there, this is our fully converted 35′ 2004 Thomas Blue Bird school bus for sale. Regrettably we have to sell our big cabin on wheels, our job situation has changed and we have to downsize to a smaller rig for maneuverability.
We built this tiny house in 2019 and it has been a fantastic home for us. We built it with a real solid wood interior and that rustic cabin feel. This bus is designed for true year round off-grid living (particularly prepared for colder climates in the mountains) and is equipped with a full solar system with over 1000 watts of solar on the roof, a large wood burning stove, full residential size cookstove/oven, and a self-contained water system amongst other things.
The Bus Itself:
2004 Thomas Blue Bird 35′ total length
CAT 3126 rear-mounted diesel engine 166,361 miles and Alison Transmission
New Toyo M170z front tires purchased last year (Rear Tires inspected and found to be in great shape)
Rust-free frame and potential to add undercarriage storage
Interior headroom is about 6′ 3″
Everything in this bus is custom built out of high quality wood and it is incredibly sturdy. It fully encapsulates the feeling of a cozy cabin complete with hand painted/wood burned art throughout the interior and a beautiful pine tongue and groove ceiling.
In the living room space there is a large couch/guest bed with storage underneath. Across from the couch is entertainment system cabinetry and storage with a drop down table.
Down the way is the kitchen, wood stove, and rustic trough shower with a teak wood topper and redwood plank insert.
The bathroom is comprised of a custom composting toilet (so no gross blackwater) which is designed to involve less handling and more capacity than that of nature’s head toilet and similar models. The bathroom is completed with a Shou Sugi Ban burned wood aesthetic.
In the rear, we have the bedroom which is separated by an artistic hand-made solid wood door. The bedroom can accommodate a queen-size mattress and is highlighted with a custom herringbone style header, beautiful beetle kill blue pine walls, reading nook area, under-bed storage, and pullout dresser.
We have lived in this bus in the alpines of Idaho, Utah, and Montana, and with the large wood stove the space can be plentifully heated even on below zero degree days. Additionally, the simple foot pump water system will not freeze or break and can be used without any power.
The bus is insulated with hard foam reflectix poly board, 1.5” on the ceiling and 3” on the walls which helps to keep it nice and toasty inside when the fire is roaring and cool when its roasting out.
Up top we have a rooftop deck which is about 8′ by 12′ in size and is great for large item storage, stargazing and yoga.
A center-mounted Pleasant Hearth Woodburning stove with a 1,200-sq ft. heating area and up to 50,000 BTU per hour excellently warms the entire living space. This stove has a brick-lined firebox and baffle for a double burn making it extremely efficient and produce less smoke. It also fits full size 18” logs and has a huge ceramic glass window that bathes the whole bus in a cozy fire glow.
This isn’t like messing around with a tiny wood stove this thing actually heats the entire space and can burn all night. It has a large enough top to cook on it as well and a firebox underneath which can hold about 3 days worth of wood. The hearth is grey and white real stone tiling.
For cooling a remote control window-mounted A/C can be run all day and through the night off the solar system. It fits in any window and can stored out of the way when not in use. Additionally the rooftop deck and solar panels also provide another layer of shade on the roof to help keep it cool.
The kitchen is comprised of custom wood cabinetry and a Hackberry live edge slab countertop with an epoxy pour and Aspen and Cedar wood accents. The cookstove is a residential size Whirlpool stove/oven with 4 burners and a full size oven which runs off an under mounted 5 gal. propane tank. A 5 gal tank can last 3 months to a full year depending on how much you cook. (we cook every meal)
The kitchen area also contains a large amount of pantry storage rivaling that of even some full size homes. We did this to make sure we could go off the grid with canned food storage and supplies for as long as we’d liked. For fresh food we have a Whynter 45 quart adjustable temperature (-8 to 50 degrees) fridge/freezer that is designed to be run off solar and only uses 65 watts.
The solar system is 24V and consists of 5 solar panels on the roof totaling 1050 watts, a 60 amp charge controller, 4 12 volt AGM 120 watt hour batteries, and a 2000 Watt constant (4000 Watt surge) pure sine inverter. The batteries are run in series with room for expansion. The house is wired to run standard 110V with LED Lights and 6 outlets. The system is set up so that it can be run by off-shore power and could be run by a generator fairly easily although we haven’t used one as our solar panels alone have supplied enough power even in winter to run everything we have needed.
The water system is extremely simple to prevent mechanical failure, avoid freezing in the coldest weather, and allow for maximum flexibility. It would also be very straightforward to change the system if you so chose, as it is currently very compact. Running water in the kitchen sink is operated via a foot pump to give complete control of water consumption and to minimize waste.
Fresh water and grey water tanks are situated inside the cabinetry under the sink and can easily be taken out for simple filling and dumping or dumped with a valve. The grey tank and freshwater tanks are each 10 gallons total with the option to expand. The shower is run by a hand-pumped 3-gallon tank which can be filled with hot water for a warm shower. The water system is designed to require no power or propane but these amenities could easily be added as there is ample room.
As we’ve lived in this bus we’ve made many small upgrades and improvements and there are plenty more that could be made to customize the space to your own personal needs and lifestyle. All appliances will be sold with the bus including the stove/oven, woodstove, fridge/freezer, AC Unit and 22″ Flat screen TV as well as some oil, oil filters, replacements shocks, spare tire and extra exterior paints for touch ups. (Mattress not included in the sale)
Price is 79,000 OBO. Let us know if you have any questions and thanks for looking.
Update: We have 8 parties interested as of 01/11/2022. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you’re interested. We are still accepting offers. Thanks for looking!