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Old July 11, 2019, 09:35   #1
NFADLR
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WDYT: What Do You Think: Class 8 Truck Tractor Converted Into Motor Home

Working on the law aspect as I haven't found the tractor yet but know what I am comfortable with and what I want.

I noticed the exemption in federal law years ago, just wasn't sure what could be done with it, 49 CFR § 390.3(f)(3) “Occasional use” exemption.

Now I know what can be done with it and I'm running with that to get my ass out of the communist state I'm currently in.

Most states have a regulation about if it has the features of a RV or Motor Home it can be registered as one and also gets a pass on DOT numbers and log book regs as well.

Will add more that I've found online ASAP.

Latest DOT exemption I've found and it's explination.
https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/hours-serv...s-fmcsa-safety

Last edited by NFADLR; July 20, 2019 at 19:20.
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Old July 11, 2019, 09:45   #2
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Is it a diesel?
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Old July 11, 2019, 10:31   #3
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Is it a diesel?
Steam.






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Old July 11, 2019, 10:37   #4
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Steam.






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I have a friend that built a wood burner that runs on the fumes
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Old July 11, 2019, 11:17   #5
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Yes it's a diesel, it runs on #2 and #1 when the conditions are right for #1.



It will look somewhat like this so to 1 have room for my mate and #2 have room for the minimum required items in the cab to qualify it to be registered as an RV or Motor home.



So far I've been unsuccessful at finding a cheap truck with a large enough sleeper cab IE the 110 inch Peterbilt 362 3 axle truck tractor.

I already have the trailers titled and registered and am now looking to procure a prime mover to pull them with.
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Old July 11, 2019, 11:33   #6
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One thing I would look at carefully is new regulations on diesel rigs that will require 2010 modifications before the rigs are allowed on the road. Right now it's just cities demanding it but it will hit the country before you die. Converting your diesel to fit the new regs may cost more than its worth. Bing search new diesel regulations and see if it may give you problems.
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Old July 11, 2019, 11:55   #7
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Oh yes the tiered engine thing.

I spoke to a commercial enforcement officer at a scale house (chicken coop) on the route I would take when I move and if it's already registered OOS (out of state) he says I can buy a permit to move it within Nazifornia to go get my trailer and pull it back thru the state.

He also said the environment nuts that deal with compliance on old truck emissions aren't there but 1 or 2 days a month, Chances of running into them are rare.

He further said that they the standard commercial enforcement officers don't GAF about the engine that's in one's truck oh and it being an RV negates that enforcement anyway so it does not apply if you aren't registered as a class 8 truck.
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Old July 11, 2019, 12:11   #8
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I've always thought a semi-truck with the cab extended rearward over the frame where the trailer hitch plate typically resides would be boss.
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Old July 11, 2019, 12:37   #9
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I've seen trucks that may be perfect for some like this one below I just need the 5th wheel to my trailers with.


https://www.rbauction.com/2002-peter...gn=syndication




For my purposes this is the federal exemption, there are comparable state exemptions as well.
49 CFR § 390.3(f)(3) “Occasional use” exemption
https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/hours-serv...s-fmcsa-safety



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I've always thought a semi-truck with the cab extended rearward over the frame where the trailer hitch plate typically resides would be boss.

Last edited by NFADLR; July 11, 2019 at 14:53.
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Old July 11, 2019, 17:29   #10
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A whole lot of "may"in their description... Commonly referred to as a Toterhome.

Wouldn't these only apply to a person, or fictitious person like subject actor or something like that?

How this ride:
https://detroit.craigslist.org/mcb/r...909782106.html

Edit:
https://columbus.craigslist.org/rvs/...885989096.html

Last edited by cotter; July 11, 2019 at 18:26.
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Old July 11, 2019, 18:13   #11
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Guy on a motorcycle site I frequent did it, scroll down a bit

https://advrider.com/f/threads/build...323535/page-19
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Old July 11, 2019, 20:05   #12
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Originally Posted by NFADLR View Post

It will look somewhat like this so to 1 have room for my mate and #2 have room for the minimum required items in the cab to qualify it to be registered as an RV or Motor home.

So far I've been unsuccessful at finding a cheap truck with a large enough sleeper cab IE the 110 inch Peterbilt 362 3 axle truck tractor.

I already have the trailers titled and registered and am now looking to procure a prime mover to pull them with.
Hiring a trucker to move those trailers is going to be far cheaper than buying that Peterbilt and trying to comply with the motorhome regs.

IIRC from a heavy truck forum, a commercial 5th wheel plate and commercial van trailer is no Bueno as a motorhome. Whether it's your stuff or not. The DOT doesn't care for coyotes.

Also, if Cali requires a CDL for that truck, you wont get away from it using the "occasional use" excuse. Unless it does pass as a motorhome.

Not trying to discourage you, but I have been involved in the trucking industry for nearly 40+ years... Owner, operator, and heavy hauler. This whole thing is going to gain you many new long term "friends" at the scale houses.
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Old July 11, 2019, 20:25   #13
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Why not look into purchasing an old model diesel bus. Cheaper and easily convertible to a motor home. Or, with the money you would spend on converting an OTR tractor, you could probably find a decent used model that would suit your needs.
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Old July 11, 2019, 20:51   #14
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Why not look into purchasing an old model diesel bus. Cheaper and easily convertible to a motor home. Or, with the money you would spend on converting an OTR tractor, you could probably find a decent used model that would suit your needs.
This, convert a bus or pick up a decent used Beaver/Country Coach or other quality motorhome an I think you would be way ahead of the game.

I did however convert a comm shelter for my old M35a2 years ago as a camper








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Old July 11, 2019, 21:08   #15
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That's a sweet setup,
I had a M54 setup with the same kind of military shelter, I found it out near where I was living halfway between Virginia City and Dayton Nevada about 1993 or so.

I plan on hauling non commercial semi trailers that I currently own, can't haul trailers with a duce.5 or a 5 ton cargo truck.

It kind of makes me wish I still had my old M52 or M275 truck tractors.

Am working on another post that has law and regulations in it.

Basically shows how what I'm doing is legal.


12v71 Have a link or chapter and verse on this ?
IIRC from a heavy truck forum, a commercial 5th wheel plate and commercial van trailer is no Bueno as a motorhome. Whether it's your stuff or not. The DOT doesn't care for coyotes.
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Old July 11, 2019, 21:09   #16
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Class 8 requires CDL, even if for personal use—air brakes and all. But you don’t believe in the driver license industry, so this is probably not a route you want to take. CA DOT does not mess around, and will impound your rig in a hot minute. You can throw all the gold fringed flag, merchant marine ancient traveler vs operator code mumble jumbos them all you want, but you will still be out of your Class 8 investment as it sits in impound.
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Old July 11, 2019, 21:41   #17
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Only commercial vehicles require a CDL after its registered as an "RV" it's non commercial.

I'm not planning on dealing with CA DOT.


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Class 8 requires CDL, even if for personal use—air brakes and all. But you don’t believe in the driver license industry, so this is probably not a route you want to take. CA DOT does not mess around, and will impound your rig in a hot minute. You can throw all the gold fringed flag, merchant marine ancient traveler vs operator code mumble jumbos them all you want, but you will still be out of your Class 8 investment as it sits in impound.
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Old July 11, 2019, 21:51   #18
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That's a sweet setup,
I had a M54 setup with the same kind of military shelter, I found it out near where I was living halfway between Virginia City and Dayton Nevada about 1993 or so.

I plan on hauling non commercial semi trailers that I currently own, can't haul trailers with a duce.5 or a 5 ton cargo truck.

It kind of makes me wish I still had my old M52 or M275 truck tractors.

Am working on another post that has law and regulations in it.

Basically shows how what I'm doing is legal.


12v71 Have a link or chapter and verse on this ?
IIRC from a heavy truck forum, a commercial 5th wheel plate and commercial van trailer is no Bueno as a motorhome. Whether it's your stuff or not. The DOT doesn't care for coyotes.
I have been digging for that one. It's been a good 3 years and I'm not sure which truck forum it was on. American Truck Historical Society has had several discussions about class 8 trucks as motorhomes and CDL requirements For occasional use show trucks.
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Old July 11, 2019, 22:04   #19
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As I see it there are two jurisdictions to deal with, the feds and the state the "RV" is being titled and registered in.

I've heard tell that some on forums suggest one is required to pull an axle to create a 2 axle and the 5th wheel plate.

But have not seen this requirement in print in federal law or the state I'm planning on registering the "RV" in.

I appreciate everyone's input but like my tow bar adaptation for my 2007 Chevrolet Silverado I get an idea and unless there is a law against what I plan to do it will happen god willing and the creek don't rise.

This project is no different just more legally complicated and more expensive.

Im building an escape plan from this slimeball state come hell or high water.




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I have been digging for that one. It's been a good 3 years and I'm not sure which truck forum it was on. American Truck Historical Society has had several discussions about class 8 trucks as motorhomes and CDL requirements For occasional use show trucks.
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Old July 12, 2019, 01:00   #20
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The main reason I don't want a bus is it won't haul my trailers.

And that is the main reason I'm purchasing the Peterbilt truck tractor to convert.

I drove 11/13 western for about 20 years so pretty much know the ropes already.

I'm exempt from a CDL and from a ELD to start and the motor home will be titled and registered in another state so those California chicken coops won't be a issue.

The sign on the side of the prime mover and the trailers will read not for hire, Non commercial etc.

It's my understanding that a non commercial "RV, or Motorhome" is not subject to the up to date tier xx emission engine.


I plan to checkout every angle where they might attempt to snag me.


Commercial Motor Vehicle A motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used in commerce to transport passengers or property if the vehicle:
 Has a gross vehicle combination weight rating or a gross combination weight of 26,001 pounds or more, whichever is greater, inclusive of a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 10,000 pounds
 Has a gross vehicle weight rating or a gross vehicle weight of 26,001 pounds or more, whichever is greater
 Is designed to transport at least 16 passengers, including the driver.  Is a school bus; or
 Is of any size and is used in the transportation of hazardous material as defined in MCA 61-8-801.
The following vehicles are not commercial motor vehicles:  Authorized emergency service vehicle:
1. Equipped with audible and visual signals as required under MCA 61-9-401 and 61-9-402; and
2. Entitled to the exemptions granted under MCA 61-8-107  A vehicle:
1. Controlled and operated by a farmer, family member of the farmer, or person employed by the farmer;
2. Used to transport farm products, farm machinery, or farm supplies to or from the farm within 150 miles of the farm or, if there is a reciprocity agreement with a state adjoining Montana, within 150 miles of the farm.
3. Not used to transport goods for compensation or for hire; or
 A vehicle operated for military purposes by active duty military personnel, a member of the military reserves, a member of the National Guard on active duty, including personnel on full-time National Guard duty, personnel in part-time National Guard training, and National Guard military technicians, or active duty United States coast guard personnel.



Quote:
Originally Posted by tac-40 View Post
Why not look into purchasing an old model diesel bus. Cheaper and easily convertible to a motor home. Or, with the money you would spend on converting an OTR tractor, you could probably find a decent used model that would suit your needs.
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Old July 12, 2019, 08:36   #21
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Only commercial vehicles require a CDL after its registered as an "RV" it's non commercial.

I'm not planning on dealing with CA DOT.
That varies by the state you are licensed in. Some states require a CDL for motorhomes over a certain size, some require air brake endorsements. I understand Texas requires and air brake endorsement but if you are licensed in a state not requiring that you are cool driving through states that do...It is a confusing quagmire.
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Old July 12, 2019, 09:00   #22
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You could also get one of these, either civilian or military surplus. Pulled by a pintle hook style hitch. As long as you don't have too much weight on the trailer, you should be GTG.

https://www.ironplanet.com/for-sale/...rm=&pnLink=yes

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Old July 12, 2019, 09:28   #23
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Would require air lines from truck pulling the con gear.
Not considered safe by dot officers IMO especially over long distances like in my case moving across several states.

would be hauling a 53 and 48 ft trailers fully loaded.

Not an option.

I can see pulling into a scale with a setup like that enforcement officers rolling on the floor.


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You could also get one of these, either civilian or military surplus. Pulled by a pintle hook style hitch. As long as you don't have too much weight on the trailer, you should be GTG.

https://www.ironplanet.com/for-sale/...rm=&pnLink=yes


Last edited by NFADLR; July 12, 2019 at 09:44.
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Old July 13, 2019, 06:41   #24
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Does that thing come with a liquid metal T1000 driving it?
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Old July 13, 2019, 08:17   #25
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Back in the late 1990s I saw a custom motor home which sounds up your alley. It was built up north in Vermont or New Hampshire.

It was a REO truck (18 wheeler type) that had the frame cut and extended and a container put on the back. They opened the front so you had access to the cab from inside. A reefer was installed over the cab so it had A/C, lots of bunks, cooking area, and a lav. The back opened up and had a ramp to drive a jeep and Harleys into the rear for local transportation. Kinda looked like a Mad Max type of truck.

The boss bought a fork lift from him that had an older Harley motor and trans installed. I can not remember the year but it had the oil tank next to the gas tank. A hole was made in the front cover for the hydraulic pump, the clutch was rigged to a pedal on the floor and there was a shifter rigged up too. You had to climb up on the back to kick start the sucker.
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Old July 13, 2019, 08:37   #26
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I think it's pretty smart to make your life mobile by the looks of what's going on.

In Iraq there was a city size pile of conex boxes we all lived in. They split it with one bathroom in the middle and there was a lot of room to live in what's left. They stacked them two high.

I am suprised they don't set up the same cities for the homeless, it's like they want revolt.
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Old July 13, 2019, 09:06   #27
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Turning the old (1985-1990 or so) Pete into a "Motor Home" isn't in reality to live in it, but to make it road legal to be able to pull my trailers to move out of the present communist state I live on.

Both the Tractor and Trailers will have "Not for Hire", "Private Coach" equivalent terms plastered all over them.

This and the way the tractor is registered is how one can operate it pulling a fully loaded 53 ft trailer without having a CDL.

This is also in line with federal title 49 section 300 exemption, Hauling ones own personal property.
This is closer to the size sleeper I had in mind, the only issue is finding one in good shape that I can afford.
Gonna have to sell the boat and engine to afford it.

I think this is a 90 inch cab and the truck below has a 110 inch cab.




Last edited by NFADLR; July 16, 2019 at 23:55.
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Old July 16, 2019, 10:47   #28
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I get what you are wanting to do as far as moving your stuff by
using what is at hand , I just wanted to share what a freind of
mine put together back around '97 I rode in this rig from Calif. to
WA. , it was pulling a 2 axel heavy equipment trailer with a heavy load,
( standard pintle hitch ) pulled straight as a pin , no reason why
it couldn't pull a 30 ' dry van , the box on the truck is off a penski
or U haul rental ( moving truck ) the front is cut out for access
from the cab , the inside is custom built it's just like a regular
home inside , anyway it's considered to be a RV or motor home
registered in WA. St. never stopped at any scales in all 3 states
Calif. , Ore. Wa.

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