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 BBAA vs. ThomasHDX vs. IC fe/re
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:46:32 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Both the Blue Bird All American and Thomas SAF-T-Liner HDX are well known and have legendary strength and safety, but what about the newest member of the transit family, the IC-Corp fe/re series buses? This forum post gives members of pupil trasportation industry a chance to discus their opinions on the differences of the three mentioned models. You are also welcome to give tidbits of information about current or past modles of transit buses. Please try not to insult the opinions of other members!! Good luck and happy blogging.

Edited by - dem84skeeprollinup on 02/07/2006 8:01:10 PM

Cody
Top Member

United States
1628 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:49:23 PM  Show Profile  Visit Cody's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Let the wars begin. I want a clean fight!
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IC
Top Member

USA
3413 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:51:42 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
"Please try not to insult the opinions of other members!!"

IMPOSSIBLE!!!!
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Rich
Top Member

United States
5768 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:53:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Blue Bird All American RE is the heaviest out of all three, and is my overall favorite. It's been on top of the game for a long time, and is an excellent bus. Thomas HDX is just behind the All American in my book.

The IC RE looks pretty lousy with all of the "design improvements" that they've done recently, and it's also the lightest out of the group, and the only one to offer hydraulic brakes. Also the only one to offer a V8. Definitely the lightest and cheapest of all three, unless you option the heck out of it.



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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:54:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Here we havve hundreds of AmTran and IC RE 200's ranging from 1996 to 2006. They are great buses, so reliable, the 1996-2004 units have the harty T444E engine, while it was a standard Diesel, they work GREAT! our 2006 units have the VT365 which has been giving us a bit of trouble, but Overall, I LOVE the bus. We also have 1993, 1997-2006 AmTran Genesis and IC FE's that are great buses as well. They ALL have the DT466 except the 93's with the DT360. They are nice buses, and are used for Special ed. We Have 1989-1991 Blue Bird TC 2000 and All American FE's which are still running strong. The AA's have the CAT 3208 and are fantastic! The body's on the TC's are still not rusty, and they look fine! Our 1994-95 and 97-98 Thomas MVP ER's are TERRIBLE due to spec'ing issues, they are crap! They are rusting and so on. None of the other buses are rusting as bad, even the 87 Special Ed Waynes we have.

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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thomas86_a
Top Member

USA
4407 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  7:56:31 PM  Show Profile  Visit thomas86_a's Homepage  Send thomas86_a an AOL message  Reply with Quote
BBAA/ThomasHDX/IC-RE300 topic.

If you have an International, you NEED customer service.
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bird is there any other?
New Member

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  8:06:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
hey ic-re how are the bodies on the ic's?
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  8:14:38 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
To all those who are comparing the buses, here are some usefull sites for specs. For Thomas: http://www.thomasbus.com/prod_school/typeD.asp
For Blue Bird:http://www.blue-bird.com/products/school/all_american.php
For IC:http://www.ic-corp.com/site_layout/vehicles/REdetail.asp or http://www.ic-corp.com/site_layout/vehicles/FEdetail.asp

I hope these are helpful.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......


Edited by - dem84skeeprollinup on 02/07/2006 8:17:09 PM
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Rich
Top Member

United States
5768 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  8:19:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dem84skeeprollinup

To all those who are comparing the buses, here are some usefull sites for specs. For Thomas: http://www.thomasbus.com/prod_school/typeD.asp
For Blue Bird:http://www.blue-bird.com/products/school/all_american.php
For IC:http://www.ic-corp.com/site_layout/vehicles/REdetail.asp or http://www.ic-corp.com/site_layout/vehicles/FEdetail.asp

I hope these are helpful.



Good idea. Some people on here need help like that, hehe.
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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/07/2006 :  8:25:59 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by bird is there any other?

hey ic-re how are the bodies on the ic's?



The bodies on our IC's are still in GREAT shape, I haven't seen rust anywhere on them, and it rains a lot around here, and at the slightest flurry, the roads are COVERED in salt, so they have handled it well. They have the poly...something paint so they are shiny, the 96's don't have that type of paint, so they are a bit faded. We have a few squeaks with emergency doors on some of the buses, but the mechanics put some lube on, and they are right back in service. Many of them are high headroom with A/C and LED so they well spec'ed. I have pics of them in my webshots (address is in my signature) and they are just holding up better than the Thomas's. The IC's are still running strong as well. The bodies look great, and the 2001's look like they were built yesterday. The 1999 and 2000 AmTrans are beginning to take a beating because they are now in the hands of newer drivers, and not the originals. Funny thing is around here when a driver gets a bus brand new, they keep it in great shape for the 5 years they have it, and when it is time for a new one, they do the same for that bus, but the driver who gets a bus used, couldn't care less about caring for them, they are just waiting for their opportunity to get a brand new bus to care for. SO it depends a lot on the driver, but they are doing great.

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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92FrdCarp#11
Top Member

USA
1455 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  3:41:42 PM  Show Profile  Visit 92FrdCarp#11's Homepage  Send 92FrdCarp#11 an AOL message  Click to see 92FrdCarp#11's MSN Messenger address  Send 92FrdCarp#11 a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
I don't have any experience with the Blue Bird All American or the Thomas HDX and very little experience with the newer IC FE. In my opinion, I'll take an IC FE any day. Thomas HDX after that and then a Blue Bird All American.

Johnny

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ooms7j
Senior Member

USA
154 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  4:30:16 PM  Show Profile  Visit ooms7j's Homepage  Click to see ooms7j's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
We only have thomas c4 and c2 but I believe that thoms is a better brand of bus
Agian this is my opinion and is subject to rejection by anyone.(I just hope thay don't)

Emergency situations are my responsibility, Drive Safe, ooms7j
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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  4:31:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ooms7j

We only have thomas c4 and c2 but I believe that thoms is a better brand of bus
Agian this is my opinion and is subject to rejection by anyone.(I just hope thay don't)



What is the world is a Thomas C4?

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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ooms7j
Senior Member

USA
154 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  5:21:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit ooms7j's Homepage  Click to see ooms7j's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
[/quote]What is the world is a Thomas C4?[/quote]

A c4 is a normal Conventional type school bus. Look on the thomas web site.

This is what I have seen


ooms7j

Emergency situations are my responsibility, Drive Safe, ooms7j
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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  5:30:34 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
There is only a C2 and A FS 65 from Thomas Built

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  6:22:28 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Maybe the fs 65 is called the C4 for its explosive power.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  6:40:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Anyone know of any interior changes in the 2007 IC RE's and FE's? We have about 108 RE's and FE's comin gin starting at the end of this month.

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  6:51:41 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by IC-RE

Anyone know of any interior changes in the 2007 IC RE's and FE's? We have about 108 RE's and FE's comin gin starting at the end of this month.



From what I've seen of them, they might be changing the contour of the roof and the blackening around the eight-ways. They will probobly offer some new options as usual.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  6:53:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Well, they did that a long time ago with the late 2004 models labled as 05 units. We have over 120 2006 IC RE's and FE's an dthe interior is the same as our 2002-2004's, so who knows.

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  7:12:29 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Yes, your right. What I get from the design is alot of repititiomn over the years. For an example, The 99 Navistar Blue Bird conventionals only had three changes in design from the 98's. They added a trans temp gauge, ropositioned the rear emergency exit window, and changed the pa/radio speacker types.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......


Edited by - dem84skeeprollinup on 02/08/2006 7:13:35 PM
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2006 :  7:16:40 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
May I also add that IC-Corp is working on a diesel-electric hybrid bus. They did not mention what models system is meant for, but the RE IC's are a prime suspect. IC-RE (the member) probably won't get these though.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......


Edited by - dem84skeeprollinup on 02/08/2006 8:05:53 PM
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B. Busguy33
Top Member

USA
3444 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  05:17:10 AM  Show Profile  Visit B. Busguy33's Homepage  Send B. Busguy33 an AOL message  Send B. Busguy33 a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Yes, your right. What I get from the design is alot of repititiomn over the years. For an example, The 99 Navistar Blue Bird conventionals only had three changes in design from the 98's. They added a trans temp gauge, ropositioned the rear emergency exit window, and changed the pa/radio speacker types.


This is not a design change on Blue Bird's or International's part. These are optional specs that the operator orders for the buses.
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DTC951
Senior Member

USA
161 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  07:50:43 AM  Show Profile  Send DTC951 an AOL message  Reply with Quote
Quite true B. Busguy... From what I can tell from driving Thomas International's it seems in 1999 International added a red area on the engine temp. gauge. I have seen this on several operators buses so far, so I'm thinking it was a standard design change. So thats one "new in 1999" item. Also tilt wheel came a year or so earlier on the International's I believe, 1998 was the first?

dem84skeeprollinup, The exit windows are a Blue Bird item, nothing to do with the International "part" of the bus.. Along with speaker choices. There were and still are several, you can also spec where you want speaker placement. So many items to choose from... I know the local salesman likes me, because I like options!

-Barry
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  6:33:26 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Your probobly right. Then where there any changes between these two years?

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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dmoney127
Advanced Member

USA
253 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  6:37:18 PM  Show Profile  Send dmoney127 an AOL message  Send dmoney127 an ICQ Message  Reply with Quote
I think the tilt wheel came earlier than that...my old 1993 Genesis had one!

Also, on those IC models with console-mounted 8-way switches, I can't believe they're STILL using the same style steering wheel that my old Genesis had-thought they would have come out with something a little more exciting by now!
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thomas86_a
Top Member

USA
4407 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  6:53:27 PM  Show Profile  Visit thomas86_a's Homepage  Send thomas86_a an AOL message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dmoney127

I think the tilt wheel came earlier than that...my old 1993 Genesis had one!

Also, on those IC models with console-mounted 8-way switches, I can't believe they're STILL using the same style steering wheel that my old Genesis had-thought they would have come out with something a little more exciting by now!



That steering wheel had a long run that's for sure!

If you have an International, you NEED customer service.
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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:04:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
while that wheel is pretty old, I still kinda like them. I think they are still nice! I don't like the steering wheels on the Birds and Thomas's (I am not a driver, but I am going by looks haha) because they are a lot less car-like. I LOVE the CE and C2 steering wheels. The FS 65 reminds me too much of the old GMC/Chevy wheels.

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:15:17 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Have you seen the new blue bird steering wheels with the cruise control biult in?

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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Rich
Top Member

United States
5768 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:23:03 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dem84skeeprollinup

Have you seen the new blue bird steering wheels with the cruise control biult in?



Huh???



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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:36:51 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
Oh yes, our 06 bb convetionals have the cruise control buttons in the steering wheel. If you'd like, i'll try to get a picture for oyu.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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Cody
Top Member

United States
1628 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:41:14 PM  Show Profile  Visit Cody's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Are these International 3300s by any chance?
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:42:46 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
pretty sure

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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IC-RE
Top Member

USA
4117 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:44:42 PM  Show Profile  Visit IC-RE's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Well, in that case, that is an International that has the controls in the steering wheel with a Blue Bird body, Blue Bird produces the Vision and All American Chassis which do not have controls in the steering wheels

bus 1980, a 2008 IC RE 300 for Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, Virginia.
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Cody
Top Member

United States
1628 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:45:49 PM  Show Profile  Visit Cody's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Well then this isn't a "Blue Bird" steering wheel. It is an International steering wheel. International is no longer available with Blue Bird.
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dem84skeeprollinup
Top Member

USA
888 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:46:55 PM  Show Profile  Click to see dem84skeeprollinup's MSN Messenger address  Reply with Quote
sorry, I thought it was a make wide change.

Do the world a favor and bring back GMC and Ford conventional chassis......

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78fordwayne
Top Member

USA
2868 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2006 :  7:47:10 PM  Show Profile  Visit 78fordwayne's Homepage  Send 78fordwayne an AOL message  Send 78fordwayne a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
http://www.navistar.com/site_layout/vehiclecenters/detail.asp?model=3300

This is the International 3300 chassis. Is this what the front of the bus looks like ??

The steering wheel is part of the chassis. As nothing to do with Blue Bird

Robert B.

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