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Skoolie Conversion: GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura

Here’s a DIY skoolie that’s an awesome entry-level way to get into bus life. It is simple on the inside with a few sets of cabinets, a sink, and a pull-out pantry and chest refrigerator.

The bus is a GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura, and it’s for sale by owner now. Check it out below!

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Compact Bus Conversion for Sale

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 4

Images: Anita

There are a number of decorated cabinets when you walk in.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 8

There’s a little sink and a bit of counterspace.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 3

Images: Anita

There’s a faux tin backsplash.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 2

Images: Anita

There’s a little window peeking out.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 6

Images: Anita

The chest fridge pulls out here.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 5

Images: Anita

There’s a big cabinet for storage.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 9

Images: Anita

There’s a pull-out cabinet.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 47

Images: Anita

A blanket blocks off the cab.


Images: Anita

The bus in process.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura

Images: Anita

Here’s the solar on the top of the bus.

GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura 79

Images: Anita

VIDEO: Bus Video


GMC 1989 C3500 Vandura with Thomas Bus Body, 5.7L V8 Gas Engine Auto Transmision. In good shape. Seals recently replaced. Runs great. Travelled cross country a few times.

Comfortable Captain Chair

250 WATTS OF SOLAR 2 RENOGY LITHIUM-Iron Phosphate Battery 12 V 100Ah

INVERTER-Xantrex AC Input/Output 30A 200VA 80A

Battery Bank w/ Monitor-Victron Lithium Battery Monitor Kit Power Shore Power Cord Alternator Boast Charging Kit
3 Dual USB Charger & Socket installed-marine grade
4 LED Reading lights DC- Marine lights
4 AC house outlets
Maxxair fanAC
BackUp Camera
Solar products purchased thru AM Solar.

DOMETIC CFX 35W Dual Compartment Freezer/Frig. Runs on DC/AC
Power Cord Included
VIAIR 200P 12 V Portable Tire Inflator Air Compresser-150 psi, Model 40043
FRIGIDAIRE Air Condition Unit
Wheel Covers

BUILD Framed floor, walls & ceiling with 2×4. Insulated with several layers of pink insulation. All but 2 windows, covered in build to increase insulation. The interior was built to withstand extreme temperatures. Large storage unit in rear also used to hold collapsible bed to maximize space. The sitting area removed so you can build what you prefer.

Registered in Florida. Currenlty located near New Orleans.

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Natalie C. McKee

Natalie C. McKee is a contributor for Tiny House Talk and the Tiny House Newsletter. She's a wife, and mama of three little kids. She and her family are homesteaders with sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and quail on their happy little acre.

Latest posts by Natalie C. McKee (see all)

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Marcia
    January 24, 2023, 2:19 pm

    Love the desk! Would have liked to have seen the collapsible bed out to see everything in all its glory! 🤷‍♀️ just me.

  • Linda Baker
    January 25, 2023, 1:20 pm

    certainly would have preferred naration by “the hand” rather than random music – no sleeping space? no toilet – even a 5gal bucket? No cooking surface? Sorry, too bare bones for even week end use.

    • James D.
      January 25, 2023, 3:12 pm

      Um, there’s a toilet of sorts, it was pointed to during the video (hint there was also a roll of toilet paper). There’s also a sleeping space, the bed is just collapsible and stored away when not being used. While you can just plug in something to cook or use a camping stove… Otherwise, yes, not for everyone…

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