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Old 07-10-2014, 12:52 PM   #1
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Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

Hi I bought a 1991 Chevy short bus in the fall... I've finally secured insurance on it and thought I had what I needed to register it today. Went down to DMV but I did not have the weights that I needed. Came home and on the inside of the door it says that the GVWR IS 10,000. I read up and see that this is the max the vehicle can carry. However the registration is asking me the " light weigh" (empty) & the "gross weight" ( gross weight + max load) ..
I am thinking that the gross weight they are asking for is the GVWR that I have from the door but I am not sure. I also don't know how to find the light weight that they are asking for. I don't have much in it as yet so as far as stuff there is not much weight ... Maybe 200 lbs.

Can anyone help me figure out the weights? I would love to get this thing registered today!!
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Old 07-10-2014, 01:07 PM   #2
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

I am guessing it is 4,000 ish lbs does that sound in the range for a short bus??
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Old 07-10-2014, 01:16 PM   #3
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

There should be a tag on the drivers door jam-maybe the servers side front corner of the bus body. If not, do you have a prior reg. from the former owner?
Going by my old Chevy cube van with a 10,500 gross,I'm guessing your empty weight (also called lt. Weight) I'd bet it's around 7500.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:23 PM   #4
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

We'll thanks for the one reply. Not sure it would weigh that much .. Hate to guess too far off in case it has any further complications that would make it harder to register. Damn I was hoping someone with a shortie could just chime in and give me an idea from their registration.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:27 PM   #5
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

Gross Vehicle Weight includes the vehicle plus fuel, cargo, passengers and driver. Gross weight and max weight are different terms for the same thing.

Dry Weight, which I assume is the same as Light Weight, is the weight of the empty vehicle with an empty fuel tank.

To get the "as built from the factory" dry weight, multiply the number of passengers your bus is rated for (plus the driver) times their average weight, add the weight of a full tank of fuel and subtract that from your GVW (10,000 lbs) and you should be good to go. If you want the actual dry weight, fill your fuel tank, empty out all cargo and passengers then drive to a truck stop and get it weighed on their truck scale. Subtract the weight of the fuel and your weight and you have your actual dry weight.

I don't know what the DMV assumes for average passenger weight, but gasoline weighs 6.2 lbs/gallon and #2 diesel weighs 7.15 lbs/gallon. Water weighs in at 8.3 lbs/gallon. The Federal Transit Administration used to assume 150 lbs/bus passenger but there was a proposal in 2011 to up that to 175 lbs.

It all depends on how picky your DMV is and whether they'll accept your "unofficial" numbers.
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Old 07-10-2014, 02:59 PM   #6
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

My Aerotech originally was built for a 14,050 lb. gross vehicle weight. 19 passengers plus the driver @ 150 lbs equals 3000 lbs. A full 55 gallon tank of diesel weighs 393 lbs. So my "factory" dry weight is 10657 lbs.

My "as converted" actual dry weight is 10,846 lbs.
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:59 PM   #7
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

It's easy to find you actual weight (if empty) . If you are near a truck stop, they have scales you can pay to drive over. Or you do what I did- go to your local dump and ask if you can go use their scales.
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Old 07-13-2014, 03:12 AM   #8
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

Most agricultural co-ops(grain elevator) have scales as well.
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Old 07-13-2014, 07:59 AM   #9
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

Your local bulk gravel sales and scrap metal yards have scales also.
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Old 07-16-2014, 12:06 PM   #10
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Re: Please advise ASAP NEED HELP

If you assume 150lbs per person your weight will be waaaay off. Federal Transit Administration assumptions are for ADULTS. School bus seating capacity assumes 3 kids per seat. That would be 2nd graders at most. Your bus is steel most cube vans are aluminum or frp. Your bus is most likely 8000. My diesel pickup with full fuel tanks (115 gallons) is 7900.
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