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Outsiders

Here’s What You Can Do With a Derelict Bus and Six Months Hard Work

The converted bus that will make you quit your job and hit the road...

All photographs: Beth Bicknell photography

It’s a dream for many travellers to buy up an old bus or camper van at a low cost, transform it into something special and set out on the open road.

We’ve brought you plenty of travelling mods in the past; from the most ridiculously tech’d up campervan you’ll see to some of the coolest custom VW’s around, and below is another example that’ll get you super stoked to get building yourself.

Photographs by Beth Bicknell photography.

Ashley Webber – instagram @__abuslife__ – got in touch with us on Facebook to tell us that he had done some work on an old bus and was getting ready to hit the road. He’s even going to be offering the bus as a rolling bed and breakfast when he’s in Europe, with the finished build featuring a spare bed and all.

This is the first photograph he took with the bus:

“I bought it in September last year and it took six months to build,” he told us. “I found the bus in the UK, Dorset. It was advertised a page on Facebook called Bus Love. It’s a project I’ve always wanted to do.

“I love the idea of being free and being able to drive pretty much anywhere in the world, depending on finances. There are so many places you can drive to for not much money at all.

“Also knowing that if you want to explore and find a new location you have never been to before, all you have to do is turn the key and drive as you have everything you need just behind you…. Your bed, kitchen, food and comfort of your own home.

“Once I have outgrown this one and I’m ready to settle down I would love to get a 38ft Leyland bus and turn that into a home on wheels and keep on living the bus life. This bus would have a bathroom and lots of other wicked interior features and would be awesome to bring up my children.

“I used to own a Volkswagen t25 and Volkswagen t4. I made a little bed you slide out and carpeted the walls, but I’ve not come anywhere near anything of this scale before.

“Every time I crossed something off on the list I had written down on an old piece of timber the excitement was the same all the way through. Although the first time I turned the tap and water came trickling out into my galvanised bucket sink that was an awesome feeling. It made it feel like my home from then onwards.

“Also turning the lights on for the first time in the kitchen area and sitting in my dinette area at stupid o’clock at night with a huge smile on my face, the log burner going and a beer in hand was pretty awesome. Usually by 6pm I’d have to pack my tools up as was getting dark.

“My least favourite part was working from 8am till 1am the following morning for five days solid cutting the bus apart and getting all the rust out and welding all the new steel in.

“Both arches didn’t exist on day one. And on day three I was crawling through into my bus from behind the engine – that’s how much I had to cut out. But I’ve gave him a new lease of life now and he has got many more miles to travel!

“I’m doing a year to two full time living around Europe. The furthest south I’ll go is Morocco and furthest North is Norway, stopping in all the countries in between including Austria and France for some fresh snow next season.

“This will be the bus I’ll live in – passed my (3.5t-7.5t) test to drive it! I’m also installing a 23ft decking on the roof with a rope ladder coming off the side. It will have all solar panels installed in about two weeks so I can live completely off grid.

“Last year I went to France for the end of the ski season and thought it was awesome. So when I came home I had the amazing idea of buying a bus and driving it around sweet mountains ranges and further without needing to scrub toilets, clean disgusting bed sheets or anything else.

“I have everything I need in my home on wheels! I just have to buy a bit of food for myself and some fuel if I want to explore somewhere else. And once the season has finished I can turn the key and drive off to somewhere where the sun is beaming and the surf is super sick!”

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