Converting an old RV or a school bus into a skoolie where you will be able to live in is a unique experience that cannot be replaced with anything else. Even if you manage to gather up a hundred thousand dollars to buy the most premium and elite out of the salon RV is not as satisfying as a DIY skoolie. It is a way to create something that will reflect your taste, style and a way to save a bit of money. You already know how expensive RV’s can get even if you try to find a second-hand one.
However, this kind of conversion is not an easy thing to do. You will have to replace almost everything on the school bus from top to bottom. This probably sounds like a nightmare to people who haven’t done such a project in their life. You are right. Without the right tips, knowledge, and guide, it will be a nightmarish task.
But, instead of going at this project all by yourself or with your friends and family, why not take advantage of the many other people who have already built their own skoolie? Use the knowledge they have gained during the build process and the experience from all the failures they have faced. Although, we should mention that you should never expect that everything will go according to plan even though if you follow a step-by-step guide.
So, look no further, because you have already found the best tips to help you build your own skoolie right here in this article while giving you the freedom to stylize it in your own way.
Reuse old items and furniture
This tip is not just for those who are doing a reconstruction of a school bus. This applies to any kind of renovation, whether it is your weekend house, your home, your city apartment or your skoolie, you should always first consider the stuff you already own instead of buying brand new.
Sure, your old table might be too big to fit inside the bus, but since the project is completely DIY then you should go all out on doing everything yourself. Take that old table, give it a few cuts on the sides, smooth out the edges, polish it and then try to fit it inside. Sure, the original look and size will be lost, but it will probably look great inside of your skoolie.
So, reusing what you already own is not just about saving money, but you will also create a much more unique look in the bus and you will even learn some new skills such as woodworking or woodcutting, etc. If you are out of design ideas for your skoolie project, check out Skoolie Livin.
Always think outside of the box and be creative.
Create a budget
You can’t put days, weeks or months of your time into finishing this project only to find out that you have already spent all of your funds. This is supposed to be your home, you will need to finish it as fast as possible. To do this you will have to create your own budget that you will need to follow during the entire project.
You might be wondering how to create the perfect budget, but it is actually quite simple. Sit down with your project partners, factor in all the possible expenses, where you can save money and what you can reuse. Do a little bit of research on the hardware stores in your area. This will give you a bit of insight into the prices of the materials you want to use. Naturally, you should pick the one with the cheapest price, but only once you have ensured that the quality of materials is on the same level as the ones in other stores.
Another way of tightening your budget is by limiting the number of tools you buy. Of course, you will need all kinds of screwdrivers, hammers, nails and a bunch of other tools to help you build your skoolie. But, you probably already know how expensive they can be when you buy them brand new. To save a bit of money we recommend that you consider borrowing these tools from your fellow neighbors or rent them from your local hardware shop.
Don’t give up
One of the biggest reasons why a lot of people give up this kind of project is because they quickly become disappointed and give up. We understand this kind of pain, because many of us almost gave up on the idea of skoolie because of various failures, especially when you are running low on funds. The best thing to do during the worst times is to just keep going forward.
You will need to have enough patience and faith that you will be able to finish your project, and we assure you that it will be worth it in the end.
While doing this all by yourself is not entirely impossible, the entire project may take up three to four times longer than it would with a group of friends who are willing to help. Of course, you shouldn’t bother your friends when they are busy, but even a few hours of help during a weekend will be more than enough to speed up the skoolie build process. You could also save a bit of money if your friends are willing to bring their own tools or lend them to you.
It would be especially helpful if you find someone who already has a bit of experience in this area. If one of your friends has done a bit of DIY remodeling in their house, they will know what to do a lot more than you. Their advice and assistance will be extremely useful for finalizing your project.
You could also consider finding someone with experience in carpentry, plumbing, electrical working, and welding. All of these skills can be used to speed up the process of building your own skoolie.