All kinds of organizations depend on buses to get their people from one place to another. It’s an important job, and your fleet can’t afford to have too much downtime. Getting any buses that aren’t in prime operating shape back out on the road and running smoothly is a top priority. So, when you find yourself in these kinds of positions, finding the right kinds of truck and bus parts (like Starcraft bus parts, for example) at the right price and in the right time frame is something you’ll definitely want to have covered.
Starcraft is a division of Forest River, and it manufactures several different models of shuttle buses. Shuttle buses are definitely their specialty, and that’s what we carry from them here at Central States. In fact, they’re the biggest shuttle bus manufacturer in North America.
We’ve written extensively about the uses and benefits of shuttle buses in the past, so if you’d like to learn more about how a Starcraft shuttle bus could be of use to you, you can read our blog post on the subject. If you’re here, we’re assuming you’ve got shuttle buses that you occasionally need Starcraft bus parts for. So, you probably don’t need to be persuaded to purchase a shuttle bus for your organization.
Instead, we’ll simply focus on Starcraft bus parts and how to get the right things for your fleet. Let’s dive in.
More About Starcraft
Starcraft dates all the way back to 1903 as a manufacturer of metal farm equipment. They had a long way to go to get from that to a top shuttle bus manufacturer! In their storied history, they’ve been at the forefront of many innovations in the industry. Forest River, Inc. acquired their bus division in 2001, and that really launched their Allstar model (which we’ll get into more detail on a little bit later) into the stratosphere as the top selling bus in America. It’s an impressive legacy, so if you’re looking for Starcraft bus parts, you know you’re in good company.
Safety is a top concern for this company — with fully welded steel cage bodies and “Starview” curbside visibility windows along with lots of other safety features, these buses offer lots of peace of mind. That emphasis on safety extends to high-quality Starcraft bus parts.
Obviously, if you’ve got a shuttle bus from this manufacturer as part of your fleet, then you’re going to want Starcraft bus parts to replace anything that breaks down as your first choice. It’s true that aftermarket truck and bus parts can often be less expensive than genuine Starcraft bus parts, but that means you’ll also be missing out on the high-quality nature of Starcraft bus parts that were built especially for their buses. We’ll detail the differences between these types of parts in a later section. First, let’s talk about the buses themselves.
Varieties of Starcraft Buses
Here at Central States, we offer a fairly diverse selection of different Starcraft shuttle buses. Most of them even have “star” in the name, quite charmingly. There’s the Starquest, Starlite, Allstar, MVP, and XLT. Each one is best suited to a slightly different circumstance, and they vary in terms of capacity, as well.
The Starlite is a model well-suited to small groups navigating through city streets. It’s fairly narrow, and it lends itself well to laymen drivers. You only need to have a standard driver’s license to operate one in most states. A similar model is the Starquest, which is also on the smaller side and easy to maneuver. Then, you’ve got the Allstar, which is as reliable and safe as the name implies. It comes in a few larger variations, as well, in case you’ve got more people to get from place to place.
One other model of Starcraft bus is the MVP, the standard version of which can hold more passengers than the others we’ve listed so far. It’s also a bit roomier on the inside. With all that, it’s still super safe, and it includes those important features like the fully welded steel cage construction.
The XLT is great for longer trips with bigger groups — it can hold up to 43 people, has an optional video system, and can even be equipped with mobile WiFi to help keep those passengers entertained. These extra Starcraft bus parts can make a big difference in how much your passengers enjoy their experience.
Different Kinds of Starcraft Bus Parts
When you’re trying to find the right truck and bus parts to fix up your fleet, you’re going to generally have three options for the types of parts you can buy. The first is genuine Starcraft bus parts, or parts that were manufactured by Starcraft themselves.
The second is Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts. These are different from genuine Starcraft bus parts — Starcraft might not make all of the parts for their buses in-house, so if they hire another company to make parts for those buses, then that second company is an OEM. The only tangible difference here is that genuine Starcraft bus parts will have their logo on them whereas OEM parts will not.
We’ll discuss the merits of each of these types of parts in more detail in the next section. For now, just know that whatever type of Starcraft bus parts you decide to use to get your bus up and running again, you’re making a good choice in terms of opting for Starcraft.
Other Truck and Bus Parts
We’ve focused on the Starcraft brand so far because they are such a celebrated and popular shuttle bus manufacturer, but there are lots of other brands of vehicles that you might need truck and bus parts for.
The three categories we went over earlier in regards to Starcraft also apply to any other manufacturer. You can get genuine, OEM, or aftermarket bus parts for any part of your fleet through a dealer like us here at Central States.
Consult a trusted expert before making a decision on what kind of truck and bus parts would suit your needs best. Most of the time, an aftermarket part is going to be your cheapest option. Genuine truck and bus parts might be important to you, or you might be fine with an aftermarket option because of that lower cost. Whatever you choose, just make sure you’re dealing with a reputable seller and that you have enough knowledge to make an informed decision, whether that’s on your own or through consulting with an expert mechanic.
Regarding price, you’ve got a good partner here at Central States. Our team offers monthly truck and bus parts specials to help you save money where it counts. We also offer bulk quantity discounts on select parts. Our goal is to help you get the right part at the right price the first time.
If you’re shopping on cost alone, remember to factor the warranty into your considerations. OEM truck and bus parts will come with warranties more often than their aftermarket counterparts. This will, of course, affect the price. It can be tempting to immediately choose the cheaper option, but be sure to look at all the different factors, including a potential warranty, before you pull the trigger.
Truck and Bus Parts Considerations
Of course, finding a dealer you trust is the most important part of feeling confident about buying any kind of truck and bus parts. Here, we’ll detail some of the other things you can look for throughout the shopping process.
How quickly can they get you the parts?
There’s always going to be a time crunch. Nobody wants to have a bus they’re relying on out of commission for any time at all, much less for an extended period of time. Even if the part you need isn’t essential to the bus’s functioning, it can be frustrating to be waiting for truck and bus parts.
Selecting a dealer that can get you what you need in a reasonable timeframe is one of the top considerations at play in these types of decisions. Of course, the word “reasonable” is doing a lot of work here — there are often unavoidable factors at play that control how fast a part can get to you.
A parts seller that has a big warehouse of inventory is usually going to have more parts on hand and therefore more likely to get you the part you need as quickly as possible. Here at Central States, we’re able to get you lots of parts with a quick turn around.
What’s their reputation like?
Knowing that you’re dealing with a company that is trustworthy and reliable is a top priority. One way to investigate the dealers you’re considering is to see if they have any reviews online. Of course, those should all be taken with a grain of salt, but they can still be a helpful tool. If you’re seeing the same complaints over and over, maybe reconsider buying from that company.
You can also ask around to see if anyone you know and trust has had a good experience with the parts seller you’re considering. Even if they haven’t, it’s a good idea to at least know how long this seller has been in business. A long history indicates that they’re doing something right!
It’s also fair to inquire about their reputation specifically within the niche or brand you need, which brings us to our next point…
Do they specialize in what you need?
There’s no use bothering with a dealer if they don’t know anything about your specific needs. If you’re looking to replace some Starcraft bus parts, for example, then you should find out how familiar the dealer is with that brand of bus. Lots of the expertise required is fairly generalized, but if they only stock parts for certain kinds of buses that aren’t relevant to your needs, then you’re barking up the wrong tree. It’s best to move on.
How’s their communication?
If you feel like you can’t get a straight answer from the seller you’re dealing with, then that’s a bad sign. You should feel confident that they know their stuff and that they’re being completely upfront with you.
As we’ve reiterated a few times so far, getting the parts you need as quickly as possible is a key component of a good parts buying experience. So, if the dealer is taking a long time to get back to you, that’s an issue. Prompt communication is definitely one aspect of their service you can’t ignore.
A good parts dealer answers any questions you might have, using their extensive knowledge of the space to make you sure you’re making the right decision. They should be responsive and polite at every turn. This is pretty much common sense and goes for any company you’re dealing with, but it’s worth remembering that parts dealers are no exception.
Here at Central States, we can get you the Starcraft bus parts you need to keep your shuttle buses in tip-top shape, but we also have other parts, brands, and buses available. We sell ARBOC, BraunAbility, Champion, Diamond, ElDorado, and MobilityTrans buses in addition to Starcraft, and we can get you the right parts for those vehicles as well.
Across our five different warehouses, we’ve got thousands of truck and bus parts in stock throughout the Midwest. So, if you’re looking for specific Starcraft bus parts, odds are, we’ve got what you need. We pride ourselves on getting you the right parts in a timely manner — we know your commercial buses have important work to do, and it’s necessary for them to get back out on the road in as little time as possible.
So, whether you’re looking for genuine Starcraft bus parts or just general aftermarket truck and bus parts, we would be happy to help you out and see what we’ve got in our expansive inventory that might work for you. Our goal is to get you what you need quickly and affordably. Don’t hesitate to reach out!