We bought our DREAM bus!

We started off looking for a newer coach bus that would cost more in the beginning but we were sure was in good enough shape for us to keep it for a very long time...

But then we ended up following our hearts and purchasing old Merlin the MCI here.

BUT for very good reason! Merlin here has no electrical components in his engine, he has a very, very reliable Detroit Diesel engine that nearly anyone can fix on the side of the road.

Merlin's body consists of metal frames and roof supports, and metal panels on the side making him one of the most durable and long-lasting bus bodies out there.

Merlin was cost effective as hell to buy but we knew he would need some hardcore (SO MUCH) up-keep initial costs put into him but we personally felt more than happy and more than comfortable to take on that task.

We both have always wanted to do a project car together. We wanted to fix something up from the 70's-80's one day, even if we fumbled our way through it, but this was a way better outlet for our desire to do that because of the sheer motivation that comes from wanting to live in him!

So purchasing Merlin was an exciting time for us!!

The Bus Layout

When we started this journey, we knew we wanted to fit a lot... A LOT... of modern conveniences in the bus. This is the premise we began this with and knew for us it would be achievable... eventually.

We spent a couple years in boring Victoria with just enough money to pay bills and buy groceries, and splurged rarely. What bigger items we did purchase, we did our best to sell later on. We knew our time here was temporary that was the lucky bit.

We are two people with a shitload of hobbies, interests and things we don't want to live without... so we decided we had to fit in a DJ set, workout equipment including a mini treadmill, a work space, a spot for motorcycle gear and tools, a bathtub/mini pool tub of some sort, a bookshelf, a big shower, great wifi, two big ass TV's, an amazing sound system, a big AF fridge, dishwasher, washer & dryer, a super comfy couch that turns into a bed, a dog kennel...

The list likely goes on but here is our layout that fits it all -->

So that's the reason we had to buy a BIG coach. Some people may not need a long distance sized coach, a school bus coach might have enough under storage, but for us it wasn't a good choice.

Merlin is 12.5m (40ft) and has 2m high interior floor to ceiling, as well as 3 under storage compartments. One compartment is dedicated solely to water tanks, and the second to electricals, so the third is for our stuff and hobbies.

Rough drafts of layout
Rough drafts of layout

The Sustainability Plan

Yes, we understand buses are not great for the environment, BUT we also recognize that it is still a step down in wastefulness from when we lived at a fixed address home.

[Also, fun fact, BP (the oil/gasoline company) came up with the term "carbon footprint" to turn the blame and guilt of carbon emissions onto everyday consumers.... so think before you blame or shame people. Work on what you can, step by step reduce the harm your causing, but we also need to tackle the big guys after.]

OUR PLAN includes solar panels for renewable energy powered electricals, water tanks with their own filtration system and having tanks will reduce our overall amount of water used, a macerator toilet which also reduces water consumption and reduces the waste going into the communal water system as our black water will get recycled (in a different way than the link describes but you get the picture). We also plan to get a battery from a Nissan Leaf car instead of having multiple lead acid batteries to store our power (we will keep you all posted on how this venture goes). Then, after my recent meltdown about the horrid state of the planet, our possible last effort will be to use biodiesel in the bus. This will have to be further researched, BUT could be good!

Either way, we will be fully, like 98%, self-sustainable and we will work hard at leaving a minimal mark on the earth for the next chapters of our lives.

ie: with buying less, using less, spreading and spilling less unnatural chemicals all over the place and generally just being kinder to nature and wildlife. If you'd like to learn more head over to our Positive Change collections of posts that have SIMPLE as heck ways for us to all head in a cleaner, healthier direction :D.

Follow our bus build & adventures on Socials!




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