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BUSRIDEMAINTENANCE.COM

THE EXCLUSIVE MAINTENANCE RESOURCE FOR THE TRANSIT AND MOTORCOACH INDUSTRY

THE ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION


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Table of Contents Official BUSRide Maintenance Roundtable Discussion: Collision Repair

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About Budget Truck and Auto

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About Motor Coach Industries

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About Midwest Bus Corporation

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About REV Group

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Official BUSRide Maintenance Remote Roundtable Discussion:

COLLISION REPAIR BUSRide spoke with a select group of thought leaders in the bus maintenance industry for a roundtable discussion on collision repair.

The panelists were: Mark Polzin, vice president, Budget Truck & Auto (BTA) Ron Miller, operations manager, Motor Coach Industries (MCI) Daniel Morrill, president, Midwest Bus Corporation Todd Pocobello, director of product and service development, REV Group Describe the scope of collision repair services you offer. Ron Miller: Motor Coach Industries is a long-standing motorcoach OEM, and a division of New Flyer Industries, Winnipeg, MB, Canada. In addition to routine parts and maintenance service, we provide major collision repair from our repair facilities throughout the country Mark Polzin: Budget Truck & Auto has operated as a fullservice collision center in the midwest for 43 years. We work directly with insurance companies and manufacturers for collision repair needs. Daniel Morrill: Since 1980, midwest Bus Corporation has evolved into in one of the country’s largest companies dedicated to bus repair, replacement parts, used bus sales and field services to the transit industry. Todd Pocobello: As the parent company of 26 specialty vehicle brands, REV Group engages with all our dealer partner’s collision shops with field support, technical information and genuine OEM parts and materials. What specialized equipment and gear separate your collision repair operation from the average bus maintenance facility?

Pocobello: Since REV Group is the vehicle manufacturer, all our factory trained professionals employ the same precise manufacturing methods. At what point should an operator consider contracting collision repair specialists as opposed to attempting repairs in-house? Miller: We do not consider any job to be too big. If the operator determines a particular repair is too much to address in-house, we can definitely help. Polzin: All of our customers make in-house repairs. However, as more serious repairs start affecting the schedule and available shop space, owners should consider sending the bus out to a collision repair facility. Morrill: Compared to the average shop repairs, collision repair is a longer ordeal and, in many cases, ties up a repair bay for an extended period of time. Most operators are better off keeping that repair bay open to serve dozens of buses, rather than extensive repairs on one vehicle.

Miller: MCI Service Centers are an extension of our factory, using OEM parts and repairs are made to factory prints. When MCI completes a collision repair, the bus is the same as when it came from the factory.

Pocobello: Only trained, certified professionals should perform collision repair. The OEM process complies with all National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) tests for crashworthiness and occupant protection. Repairs done without adherence to these standards put undue risk to the owneroperator of the vehicle.

Polzin: Our frame machine has a 65-foot deck and four 50-ton pulling towers, as well as three 60-foot paint booths and two car booths utilized for parts. We recently integrated a 50-foot ramp to drive buses on the frame machine because of low ground clearance.

What critical aspects are operators likely to miss when attempting to repair collision damage work themselves?

Morrill: Equipment alone doesn’t define the operation, but rather the expertise and experience of the mechanics and 4

technicians who specialize in extensive collision repair and refurbishment beyond replacing damaged parts.

Miller: It is easy for an operator to miss hidden damage to critical structure components that he cannot see or touch. Experience has taught our professionals where to look for these issues.

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Polzin: There is typically damage beyond the initial impact point, and without the proper tools and equipment that is impossible to diagnose. Morrill: The damage may be more extensive than first realized; or impossible to identify until a certain level of disassembly has been completed. Pocobello: Following manufacturing work instructions and having access to the technical information are likely overlooked. Collision repair, like all other technical skills, requires proper training and certifications. What specific safeguards must be taken to protect employees performing major collision repair? Miller: Two safeguards we incorporate are ensuring the coach under repair is secured, and that employees are using appropriate gear and clothing to perform the work at hand. Polzin: BTA provide a Fresh Supply Air Pack for every painter, and we continually train in-house on equipment safety with fork lifts and scissors lifts. Morrill: We incorporate hearing, respiratory and fall protection equipment as needed. However, I can’t say safety equipment in our line of work is more specialized than what’s found in other safetyconscious, heavy duty maintenance facilities. Pocobello: In REV Group facilities, a safe and clean work environment that requires each employee to engage in safety training. Proper labelling of dangerous chemicals or materials and providing all the necessary disaster recovery equipment is vital. How does repair of fire damage differ from that of collision impact? Miller: In most cases, the structural components have probably been severely damaged and will need to be replaced. Polzin: Operators and technicians need to realize smoke damage can be a more serious issue than one would expect, particularly to the interior seats and fabrics, and to the vents. Morrill: Typically, vehicular fire incapacitates the vehicle to the point the bus cannot be tested to determine the full extent of the damages. Estimating the cost is particularly challenging. Pocobello: Fire and smoke damage is a complicated repair beyond simply replacing melted or burned parts. A fire-damaged interior requires a specialized process to remove soot and airborne compounds that coat surfaces and become embedded in the various materials and fabrics. As the damage isn’t always caused due to vehicular impact, how do the effects of severe weather and corrosion play into vehicle repairs by collision specialists?

Polzin: Corrosion causes severe issues with the suspension system. Where corrosion occurs, nearly every piece of hardware on a unit four years and older typically needs to be repaired or replaced. Miller: Whether the damage is the result of a collision, weather or corrosion, the repair processes are similar. We investigate level of damage, and determine what must be repaired or replaced. Morrill: In our 36 years of dealing with the impact of rust and corrosion, we find the repair process fairly straightforward. However, once the corrosion begins coming through from behind the body panels, they need to be removed and replaced. Pocobello: Metal corrosion is like fighting cancer. When you think it has been eradicated, it can reappear and the process begins all over if not treated properly in the first place. Similar to fire repairs, each situation is different and presents its own challenges. At what point is it more prudent to scrap the bus rather than repair it? Miller: No repair is impossible, but in some situations its cost will exceed its value and the decision is then to scrap the bus. Polzin: Insurance will call for the total loss on a bus if the cost of the repair exceeds 70 percent of its value of the unit — which the owner and insurance company determine. Morrill: Depending on the age of the bus, it may be vastly less expensive to replace a vehicle then to enter into a costly and time consuming repair. However, many transit agencies choose to not take a bus out of service until the end of its 12-year lifecycle or 500,000 miles. Pocobello: Each OEM establishes scrapping guidelines for the collision shop to follow. These are generally areas of the vehicle structure that can affect vehicle safety and compliance with NHTSA’s Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSS). What do you see as the most compelling recent innovations in collision repair equipment? Miller: Advancements in laser measuring equipment are proving far more accurate during repair work. Also, paint technology is changing with new mandates and formula enhancements that lend a better finish and greater durability. Polzin: The adhesives now being used to install most panels except for the major structure are compelling. Morrill: Technology of every sort is now simply part of our everyday operation. To be honest, I think the technology we employ in our work has been around for some time. There have been improvements, but its innovation is hardly recent.


Established in 1973 Over 40 Years of Satisfied Customers Budget Truck and Auto is a family owned and operated business for more than 38 years. Our 45,000 sq ft facility consists of three paint booths that measure over 65 ft long, and one of the largest frame machines in the country. We are commited to producing the highest quality collision repairs along with the most impeccable customer service available in the collision repair industry. Our goal is to exceed your expectation in every way. We strive to accomplish this through a professional, well-trained, motivated team of employees and 38 years of experience. Visit www.budgettruckandauto.com for more information!

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When it comes to providing service for your motor coach fleet, we’re in overdrive. We’ve been expanding our network of MCI service centers and Authorized MCI service providers to bring you the quality, reliable service you expect from MCI, when and where you need it. In fact, you’ll find an MCI service presence in or near many of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. and Canada. YOU’LL FIND MCI SERVICE CENTERS WHERE MOTOR COACHES GATHER With locations in or near Chicago, Orlando, Anaheim, Dallas, Philadelphia, and Montreal, MCI service center network locations meet the strategic needs of motor coach operators for equipment maintenance, repair, and service. Each service center leverages specialized diagnostic tools to get your coaches back on the road fast. Key service center locations are equipped for collision repairs, paint, and body work. Our service centers are also approved for Detroit Diesel, Allison Transmission, ZF ASTronic Transmission, and HVAC systems warranty service. MCI also offers retrofits with OEM wheelchair lifts. You’ll appreciate our competitive pricing on labor and parts, as well as our 90-day limited repair warranties. And your drivers will appreciate our comfortable customer lounges and convenient service hours, with some locations open in the evening If necessary, we can make towing arrangements to get your coach into the nearest MCI service center or Authorized MCI Service Provider.

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MCI REPAIR AND RECONDITIONING CENTERS MCI specializes in the repair of all makes and models of intercity coaches and transit buses. Our skilled technicians offer: • Major collision repair and body work • Coach painting in a state-of-the-art paint booth • Complete mechanical repair services, including chassis, suspension, brakes, air conditioning, and steering • Coach modifications and wheelchair lift installations • Insurance estimating and appraisal services • Immediate access to replacement parts on-site and 24-hour delivery of parts from the MCI inventory at our Louisville, Kentucky, distribution facility • Repair or replacement of body and structural components So, whether your coach is damaged or just showing its age, we can make it look as good as new. We can even arrange towing of your damaged coach to our facility from anywhere in the U.S. and Canada.

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Industry leader... Midwest Bus Corporation is an industry leader in the transportation support industry. We are one of the largest companies in the nation dedicated to the industry and the numerous authorities looking for assistance and solutions on bus repair, replacement parts, used bus sales, bus leasing, and field services to the transit industry. Our large onsite facilities help to keep our customers return on investment at its highest, while offering quality workmanship and detail second to none. • Midwest Bus is able to offer parts for numerous bus models • Midwest Bus carries a large inventory of buses for sale • Midwest Bus offers complete Bus Remanufacturing & Retrofitting •M  idwest Bus offers Bus Leasing for Individual and Fleet needs • Midwest Bus provides Field Services for numerous occurances Such as Air Conditioning, Wheelchair Lifts, Glass and more Growing for over a quarter century, our aim is to take pride in “Serving your future needs NOW™...” In addition, Midwest Bus has placed a strong emphasis on education and training programs for our employees, and we continually implement company wide training programs that ensure product quality. At Midwest Bus Corporation, we are committed to delivering solutions to meet our customers’ changing needs. Our ultimate goal, is to provide high quality products, services, and parts to our customers.

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Serving Universities, Public Transit Agencies and Private Coach Companies Since 1980

Serving Your Future Needs Now ONE OF THE LARGEST TRANSIT BUS REMANUFACTURERS IN AMERICA! • BUS REFURBISHING & REMANUFACTURING • REPLACEMENT PARTS • USED BUS SALES & LEASING • FIELD SERVICE • ALL SIZES • ALL MODELS

AMERICAN OWNED

TOLL-FREE (800) 627-6627

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ABOUT US REV is a leading manufacturer of motor vehicles for bus, emergency, specialty and recreation markets worldwide. Our companies innovate, design and build products that connect and protect thousands of people every day. REV’s lineup of products includes ambulances, fire trucks, shuttle buses, transit buses, terminal trucks, street sweepers, luxury motorhomes and wheelchair accessible vans. REV owns 26 brands, employs more than 6,000 people in 16 different plants in the U.S. and produces more than 20,000 specialty vehicles annually. Visit www.revgroup.com for more information!


SOME BUSES WERE MADE TO CARRY OUT TASKS.

OURS WERE MADE TO ACCOMPLISH MISSIONS.

What do school, shuttle, luxury and transit buses all have in common? Purpose. Each are called to perform duties that impact lives. We never lose sight of that responsibility and place it into every vehicle we make. We are REV and we make eight of the hardest working, most reliable, bus brands on the road. www.REVGroup.com

Finance Through REV Group - Flexible term vehicle loans with competitive rates and TRAC/Split TRAC/FMV leasing options available.


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