When Paradise Coach in Coburg, OR, called us about installing a lift into a bus they were overhauling, we didn’t hesitate.
The bus in question was a 1947 GMC Silverside, a classic people mover used by Greyhound for decades. Her flanks are covered in ridged metal popular in the 40’s and 50’s, and her interior is classy mix of modern and art-deco accents from the 50’s.
Our task was to work with Paradise Coach to find the perfect lift for a microwave that would be hidden beneath the countertop of the bus’s modest kitchen. The issue at hand was that a countertop microwave would not only take up too much space, but it also would’ve disrupted the specific design implemented inside the vintage coach.
Solving Problems With the AL-250
Our lift of choice for this project was the AL-250, one of our larger models capable of handling up to 250 pounds of weight.
Before we get into the specs of the lift and why it was a good option for this job, we want to take you back inside the bus and view the finished product.
As you can see, the only evidence of the concealed appliance is a simple seam tucked into the chromed corner of the countertop.
Keeping Your Concealed Items Safe
Using a remote control, the bus’s owner can activate the lift with an unseen push of a button. As the microwave rises up you’ll notice there’s very little sound and that the Nexus 21 engineered “Soft Stop” technology brings the appliance to a gentle stop.
We think this is an important feature both in this bus and in your home because it protects your appliances by avoiding jarring movements and stops that, over time, can loosen connections between wires and possibly cause some serious damage.
A Surprising Reveal
Another thing we like about this particular install is that, while there is a seam visible on the countertop, a first-timer would never know what lies beneath the subtle black trim.
So, when this 1947 Silverside is done gliding down the road like the regal lady she is, her owners will love to entertain guests with a trademark surprise when the microwave eases its way up from the cabinet beneath.
Don’t forget that this element of surprise is a strong feature in homes, as well. In a recent post, a contractor marveled at the way the wow factor of our lifts increased the value of a home and can be one of the main selling points of a kitchen.
Now, back to the lift itself. The AL-250 features two identical columns that are 20.7” high, 6.3” wide and 6” deep. The size of this lift is deceptive, in that it’s pretty compact considering how much payload it can handle.
A Lot of Space for Your Favorite Toys
We want to point out another aspect of this lift you may not have noticed in the video: It has a vertical travel length of 26”. There are few small appliances, height-wise, that won’t fit within the specs of the AL-250.
And with this vertical travel distance, you’ve got all sorts of options for concealment. Microwaves are a good match because they’re usually bigger than most small appliances, but don’t forget that these lifts are useful for any number of vices: coffeemakers and hidden bars are two examples.
For those of you who have plans to mod a bus or RV, you may want to consider (if possible) lengthening your countertop space and using the AL-250’s impressive 72” width capacity to store a 6-foot-long cabinet that features all your favorite appliances: blenders, coffee makers, crock pots and all the necessary things that make life on the road a pleasure instead of a pain.
Clutter? Not a Problem
With the strength and travel you can have with this lift, you may be worried about the occasional collision. Dishes and containers piled up on top of the lift may seem like a nightmare waiting to happen.
With our collision detection technology, though, you’ll avoid a spectacular mess. As the lift is traveling up (or down) is it constantly measuring the pressure, or weight, that it is moving. When the dishes piled high on the top of the lift make contact with the cabinet above, the added pressure will trigger the collision technology, automatically stopping the lift and causing it to reverse direction, safely avoiding damage to the lift, the cabinet and the dishes that caused the obstruction.
Have Your Own Tales of RV or Bus Lifts?
Drop a line in the comments section below and let us know how your RV and/or bus installs have gone. Did you drop in a microwave like Paradise Coach, or did you opt for another appliance?