While I loved Bruce's idea, I have a hard time just doing things simple. Also, this is my second school bus conversion. When I did the first one I had a combination/key lock then also. It was a manual combination lock. The main reason I opted for that type of lock was if I were camping and wanted to go swimming or just didn't want to have to take keys with me I could just dial in the combination and open the door. Nothing like losing your keys at the beach or the pool and can't get back into the house/camper.
Step 1: Gather Supplies and Get Started
Things you'll need:
Keyless digital lock (The lock I used.)
Heavy duty slide bolt
Scrap pieces of wood (or plywood)
Extension lock piece
Various power tools:
(and outer stuff depending on what problems you run into)
LETS GET STARTED!
If you have a door as this you'll need to remove the white safety bar.
Step 2: Place Your Slide Bolt
when you purchase your slide bolt measure the travel of your school bus lock bar and buy a slide bolt with the same length of travel. For example if when you open and close you bus door the flat bar slides 1 1/2", buy a slide bolt with at least 1 1/2' of travel beyound the edge of the housing. Position your lock on the door so that it will have full travel.
Step 3: Center Your Door Lock.
I used a 1 1/2" metal hole saw to drill the lock hole. Keep the drill perpendicular to the door so the lock will line up correctly outside.
Step 4: Make a Baseplate for the Outside Lock
Copy the hole pattern from the mount that comes with the lock and make a flat plate copy. Use this to mount the outside lock to the door. Make sure to smooth all your rough edges as your electronic wiring has to come through these holes.
Mount outside lock using butyl window sealer or caulking to keep rain out. Keep lock perpendicular to door.
Step 5: Make a False Door
I simulated a section of a door by gluing two 1/2" X 5" X 9" pieces of plywood together and then skinning each side with 1/4" plywood for the deadbolt to reside in. This is how the two pieces fit together. The smaller shaft slides inside the shaft that turns the deadbolt. The flat end needs to be cut off the inner shaft. It will then slide inside the shaft from the outside lock mechanism. Thus making this shaft twice as long.
Step 6: Mounting the Inside Lock
Now is where you use the inside mounting plate that came with the lock. This is what holds the inside mechanism in place.
Step 7: Finish and Enjoy Your Labors
I cut the red bar that opens the door short so as to not hit the new lock. As I continue on with this bus project I'll finish the entire rear door and the lock will blend in much more.
Watch the video to see the lock in action.
Follow the entire bus project at