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Old July 25th, 2011, 04:16 PM   #1
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Default Heavy truck RV conversion laws?

I know I can take a class 6 truck (under CDL) and convert it to an RV simple enough. My question is can I take a class 7 or 8 and convert it to an RV, or since it is over 26K lbs, can it not be converted? Anyone know if the RV laws are the same as OTR regarding weight ratings and CDL?
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Old July 25th, 2011, 07:44 PM   #2
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There is a guy here in town that had a single wheel tractor that he had made into a non-commercial vehicle and had not for hire on the side. Not sure how he got away with it but if i see his kid i can ask him and see if he did it legit. My guess is he did not.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 07:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fullsize4life View Post
There is a guy here in town that had a single wheel tractor that he had made into a non-commercial vehicle and had not for hire on the side. Not sure how he got away with it but if i see his kid i can ask him and see if he did it legit. My guess is he did not.
there are a few single wheel tractors under CDL. I am curious about conversions with trucks over 26K (over CDL)
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Old July 25th, 2011, 08:34 PM   #4
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I think all you have to have is a few motor home amenities and they will let you register it as a RV. Like bathroom and bed, I know that I saw a list at one time. I have failed at google though.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 08:49 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Tizken View Post
I think all you have to have is a few motor home amenities and they will let you register it as a RV. Like bathroom and bed, I know that I saw a list at one time. I have failed at google though.
the more I am reading, it sounds like it doesn't matter what class the truck is. I guess I'll just have to go down to the SOS and wait in line to ask someone who probably has no idea.

On the MI SOS website, this is all I can find on what dictates a motorhome. It makes no mention of total weight.
Quote:
Vehicle constructed or altered to provide living quarters including
permanently installed cooking and sleeping facilities and used for
recreation, camping, or other non-commercial use.
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Last edited by Bones; July 25th, 2011 at 08:52 PM.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 08:56 PM   #6
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I can't find it but I remember a list of about 10 things and you had to have 2 or 3 of them. It sounded real easy, what ever I was reading at the time the guy had a bucket on the floor and one hanging from the ceiling with a valve to count as a kitchen sink.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 08:59 PM   #7
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dug a little more

http://www.michigan.gov/sos/0,1607,7...3067--,00.html

Quote:
Who Needs a CDL?

Any Michigan resident who intends to operate the following commercial vehicles is required to have a commercial driver license:

Single Vehicles - Having a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR)* of 26,001 pounds or more.



Combination Vehicles - Towing a trailer or other vehicles with a GVWR of 10,001 pounds or more when the gross combination weight rating (GCWR)** is 26,001 pounds or more.



Vehicles:

Designed to transport 16 or more people (including the driver)
Carrying hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding
*Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) is the recommended maximum total weight of the vehicle and load as designated by the vehicle manufacturer. The GVWR label is usually found on the driver side door post of the power unit and on the front left side of the trailer. The GVWR should not be confused with the elected gross vehicle weight (GVW) which is declared by the vehicle owner for registration purposes.



**Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) means the value specified by the manufacturer as the maximum loaded weight of a combination vehicle. In the absence of a label, the GCWR can be calculated by adding the GVWR of the power unit to the GVWR of the vehicle(s) or trailer(s) being towed.



Exemptions



The following people do not need a CDL:


Active Duty Military (including National Guard): With military licenses operating military vehicles.



Police Officers and Firefighters: Meeting approved training standards and operating authorized emergency vehicles.



Farmers: Operating vehicles within a 150 mile radius of their farm.

An F-endorsement is needed by farmers operating combination vehicles whose towing vehicle has a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more. A knowledge test, but no skills test, is required to obtain the F-endorsement.
However, farmers who carry hazardous materials in amounts requiring placarding while operating combination vehicles whose towing vehicle has a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, or a single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, need a CDL with a hazardous materials endorsement.


Individuals: Operating motor homes or other vehicles used exclusively to transport personal possessions or family members, for non-business purposes.
If I am reading this right, I can take a class 8 truck (over 26K), convert it to an RV, and then I will not need a CDL to drive it.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:02 PM   #8
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you are correct sir, thats how the 85 year old man can drive one of these "big rigs" with no cdl
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:04 PM   #9
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awesome. This could get out of hand haha
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:20 PM   #10
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There's a few good builds on pirate. Roosterbooster has a setup like that, and there was another thread where he and a few others were chiming in real good info on truck selection.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:26 PM   #11
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indeed, at my last place of work we did this for the owner to drag around his track cars and bikes. ill try and dig up some pics. we used a old freightliner from the red cross they used to pull the medical trailer we got for a song at a local auction. red cross or any type of goverment truck are normally very wheel taken care if and have a paper trail for miles. i gutted it and did the needed things, sink, shitter, bed ect ect. i wouldn't put any other stickers on the outside of the rig other than " private owner, not for hire" you get the idea. he had some car clubs junk on his and they gave him shit thinking it was a business. if you need a hand let me know i did a good amount of shopping when we did this. a lot of stupid stuff was forgotten to the end and i wish they were brought up earlier so that they could have been better taken care of. are you just using battery power or plan on a generator? cab air or roof unit? alot of stupid thing but are something to think about. ill keep my eyes peeled at the manheim auction by the house for next load of those trucks as they do them from time to time.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by unclebeaner View Post
ill keep my eyes peeled at the manheim auction by the house for next load of those trucks as they do them from time to time.

Don't they require dealer license to able go inside and buy trucks?



Bones

What about Uhaul International 26' or GMC C6000 24' they pretty cheap dime and tons people convert to motorhome easy.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:36 PM   #13
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Don't they require dealer license to able go inside and buy trucks?
yes, but i get him in there with my old contacts there.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 11:22 PM   #14
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but if you are pulling a truck to compete, wouldn't that not be for recreation?
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Old July 26th, 2011, 07:46 AM   #15
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This is probably the best route to go. You can get some of those trucks for stupid cheap. Even with the mileage on them they will probably outlast you with the few miles put on each year. Best of all it won't even blink at hauling around a trailer, buggy, and some parts and tools.

DOOO EEEET! :)
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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:07 AM   #16
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Once again I see people talking about stickers on trucks that say "Private Owner - Not for Hire". There is NOTHING in the law about these stickers. It is an insurance requirement for some insurance companies that require COMMERCIAL haulers that are not hauling for hire. For example, a truck pulling a NASCAR team trailer. It is commercial, but not for hire. If you are a private individual, hauling your own stuff, you do not want to put that sticker anywhere on your rig. A "Not For Hire" sticker is used on commercial vehicles that don't want to be bugged by people asking them to haul their stuff for money. It is that simple. If you are non-commercial, don't put this on your rig, or any stickers that could be misconstrued as sponsorships, etc. If they even remotely think you are pulling for compensation, or involved in activities that might make money such as racing for a prize purse, you can be held to all DOT and commercial driving laws.
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Old July 26th, 2011, 09:15 AM   #17
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I looked at a 750 that had a 33k gvw, it was converted and retitled as an RV. It was a mid 80's truck and was converted back then, I dont know how much the laws have changed since then if any as to how hard it would be to retitle it. But I dont think it is a huge deal. I all ways wanted to do this. But now Im a looser and I just fish and play on the rzr...lol

I do agree, I would not put any stickers on the rig about anything motorsports related. In michigan you would probably be ok. But when you go to Cali. Im sure you will get messed with. Im pretty sure you are not recreational if you are going to a race. Or at the very least if you get pulled over I would never say I was headed to or from a race. I would say you were out 4wheeling with some friends....lol

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Old July 26th, 2011, 10:05 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 84Scrambler View Post
Once again I see people talking about stickers on trucks that say "Private Owner - Not for Hire". There is NOTHING in the law about these stickers. It is an insurance requirement for some insurance companies that require COMMERCIAL haulers that are not hauling for hire. For example, a truck pulling a NASCAR team trailer. It is commercial, but not for hire. If you are a private individual, hauling your own stuff, you do not want to put that sticker anywhere on your rig. A "Not For Hire" sticker is used on commercial vehicles that don't want to be bugged by people asking them to haul their stuff for money. It is that simple. If you are non-commercial, don't put this on your rig, or any stickers that could be misconstrued as sponsorships, etc. If they even remotely think you are pulling for compensation, or involved in activities that might make money such as racing for a prize purse, you can be held to all DOT and commercial driving laws.
I have read on a few conversionboards not to put "Not for hire", but instead put "Private RV".
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Old July 26th, 2011, 10:18 AM   #19
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I have a friend currently doing the same thing with a bobbed topkick 4-door.
He said something about getting it titled first, and then getting it insured after the fact so that you don't have hassles with the insurance company.
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Old July 26th, 2011, 10:27 AM   #20
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Hearsay only but I know Jim Mazzola did not need to get a CDL for his totorhome. He was stopped at Canadian customs for a couple hours before they ended up letting him go.
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