The story of Bernhard Bus starts with the man who started and still owns and operates the company, Bernhard “Bernie” Weihs. Bernie was born and raised in Germany but in 1962 the opportunity to immigrate to the United States presented itself.
Once in the United States, Bernie started his career as a truck mechanic and while working full time, he furthered his education by taking correspondence courses and attending a community college. Coupled with his daytime “hands on training” he quickly became a diesel expert.
Bernie was both ambitious and talented. He proceeded to engage in several jobs that provided both increasing experience and skill. He spent time as a regional sales representative for Jacobs Engine brakes and worked with Auto Car Truck Builder in the experimental engineering department.
After nine years of steady learning and experience, Bernie recognized a vacuum in the area of remanufactured components and used coach parts in the bus industry. In 1979, Bernie started his own small business out of his home in Telford, Pennsylvania to fulfill this need.
His vision was soon rewarded as the business expanded quickly and outgrew the confines of his home. In 1983, Bernie and his wife Kathy moved the business to its present location in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. With this move the company expanded its capabilities to include repair work on coaches including installing rebuilt engines, transmissions, air conditioner compressors and similar components. This was major work that smaller coach operators and private coach owners could not do themselves. Again, Bernie filled a gap in the coach industry. During this time his company grew from one to five employees.
But Bernie wasn't done there. He expanded his company again in 1988 when he began to work on converted coaches. Bernie saw a new and increasing demand to improve old coaches with more modern engines with increased horsepower as well as other improved procedures for installing automatic transmissions, power steering and other improved or updated components. His keen vision was on the money again as the business continued to grow.
In 1992, Bernie steered his company to another expansion by offering exterior body work and body modification. In addition, the company began to offer conversion bus shells that he refurbished and repaired where necessary. The company was now becoming expert at virtually all aspects of bus renovation and repair.
All projects take place in the Quakertown facility. The two large indoor working bays can accommodate the largest coaches eliminating any weather delays that outdoor bays might cause. A chassis dynamometer thoroughly tests for oil leaks and possible-overheating problems before any coach ever leaves the workshop. The focus on providing the absolutely best repairs is ongoing and a big reason why Bernhard Bus has such a great reputation. As their slogan says, “We keep you on the road.”
In recent years, Bernie has developed a love for providing disabled people, wounded war veterans and others who are physically impaired vehicles that allow them to travel safely and comfortably. Specialty Transportation and Services provides people the ability to minimize their disability and travel like everyone. Bernie can turn normal vehicles into almost anything a disabled person needs to live an active life of travel.
One of Bernie's great loves is the restoration of old, decrepit coaches into showpieces of yesteryear. As a motor coach owner himself, Bernie appreciates the significance regarding what motor coaches have provided to the transportation history of our country. Visit the Motor Home Restoration page of this website to see just a few examples of this work.
Today, Bernie, a hands-on type of guy, works alongside his mechanics at Bernhard Bus Services, LLC. The facility has grown to 7500 square feet where you can find every tool, piece of equipment, machines and so on to allow just about every repair, restoration necessary for Bernie's unique bus services company. He and his staff take great pride in the fact that if a motor coach or component can be rebuilt, they can do it.