So here we are

Our belongings

Strange. Two months ago we bought a bus and planned to blog regularly. Somehow time has passed us in the fast lane and we’re straggling behind. But we’ll try and make up for lost time, and write about what happened so far.

We got a bus late October from Whakatane, and were lucky to have a family friend drive it down to Hanmer Springs for us. It was so exciting to see the bus for the first time, and I immediately fell in love with it when seeing its potential. My mind set to work when I stepped inside in Palmerston North to pick up some of our stored belongings along the way. What a great first journey to let your ideas meander around the bus, build up interiors and wash them away again. A beautiful spot on the coast just north of Kaikoura was a worthy setting for the maiden sleep.

Sleepful in Kaikoura

North of Kaikoura

All excited we set to work early November and started gutting. Taking out seats, air conditioning ducts and unit, handrails.. All of a sudden there was a big pile of junk outside our bus and I started wondering how much more will have to get ripped out before we can start assembling our home.

Started gutting the bus

We started gutting the bus

I’m amazed by how many people were happy to offer their help, be it providing expertise in the area of car mechanics and electrics, parts for the interior, or just general tips and contacts for further help. Good old New Zealand, eh?

The long 5 week waiting game started when we had to get the bus down to Christchurch to get water tanks fitted (hasn’t happened yet, for reasons I’ll elaborate on later), and then to Amberley for a basic 24V system layout and the proper installation of seating. Ah, how fun to research requirements for safety belts, self containment certificates, HT driver’s licences, gas installation, and to wrap your head around car electrics, chargers, batteries, solar panels, plumbing, and general bus mechanics. A huge learning curve, and a test at times to fit it all in with settling back into New Zealand life and keeping two little awesome kids happy.

I was overwhelmed when we finally got our bus back in Hanmer a day before Christmas, and we could finally continue our work on it.

Painting the grooved plywood.

Painting the grooved plywood.

So here we are, two days back into it; we’ve ripped out the middle door and will build a locker in the previous space of the steps, and have started preparing the grooved ply and insulation to attach as our ceiling. Next steps after that will be more locker spaces, figuring out water tank spaces and dimensions, laying the Rimu floor and covering the internal walls.

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