Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 09-17-2016, 07:31 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 22
The Infamous CDL, I know I know

Hello guys!

I know this issue has been addressed many times and I have read through the posts and forums referring to having to get a CDL or not. I believed I had a good grip on the subject until yesterday. I went to an bus dealer to look at a bus he had for sale. It was a 66 passenger 30ft 1991 Ford Thomas. While on the bus I wanted to see the GWVR that was posted. It said 26,500 and I said excitedly, "If that's the MAX capacity, then I know the bus itself is less than 26,000 and therefore I don't need a CDL. The dealer basically told me no, the DMV will go by what's posted, the 26,500 and I WOULD need a CDL because it's over 26,000. I told him I'm not using it for "school bus" purposes, definitely not driving school children or transporting anyone so I will need to get the empty weight of bus AND weigh it again once it's converted. He told me I will not be able to do this.

I'm definitely not trying to change the rating but here is my understanding,

-I know once you convert a school bus into an RV, you won't need a CDL period regardless of weight...because it is now re-titled for personal use as an RV.

-I'm not converting into an RV, I'm converting my bus for commercial or business purposes so I do have to worry about the weight if I don't want to get a CDL.

-Regardless of the posted GWVR, Once I take the seats out, take off the words school bus, and remove the "school bus paint"....It is now just a vehicle, not a "school bus", correct?

-The GWVR is the max capacity rating meaning the bus itself plus the weight of it's passengers can not surpass 26,500...I need to focus on the empty weight of the bus right? because I will not have passengers.

Here was my plan:

1. Get the bus and weigh it immediately before doing any demo.
2. Do my conversion and get the bus weighed again once everything is done.
3. Go to the DMV to register the vehicle and re-titled at this point, after everything is done.

My questions......

1. Once my bus is converted and weighed...I should not have to worry about a CDL once I have proof that the "new weight" is less than 26,000? I do understand that the bus itself, everything the bus contains, and the bodies on the bus can not exceed 26,000.

2. Vehicles with less than 16 passengers including the driver and weigh less than 26,000 does not require a CDL. When I'm getting the bus re-titled, I need to make sure I tell them the vehicle will be used for business purposes with less than 16 passengers right? It's a mobile pop up shop so I will never be transporting anyone, never.

3. Do I have this correct? I just want to completely know what I doing and know what I'm talking about before having to fight with the good ole folks at the DMV!

It is no longer a school bus once converted. It's a school bus shell but will be considered a commercial vehicle with a weight less than 26,000 right????
SadieHawkinsSC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 08:36 AM   #2
Bus Nut
 
M1031A1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 838
Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner ER
Engine: 3208 CAT/MT643 tranny
Rated Cap: 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieHawkinsSC View Post
-I'm not converting into an RV, I'm converting my bus for commercial or business purposes so I do have to worry about the weight if I don't want to get a CDL.
If you are converting ANY vehicle above 26K pounds for ANY business of ANY kind you are required by federal law (going across ANY state line) to have a CDL. IF you are not dong interstate commerce, then your state dictates IF you are required to have a CDL or not (consult your local DMV for specifics).

M
__________________
Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence. — George Washington
M1031A1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 08:53 AM   #3
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by M1031A1 View Post
If you are converting ANY vehicle above 26K pounds for ANY business of ANY kind you are required by federal law (going across ANY state line) to have a CDL. IF you are not dong interstate commerce, then your state dictates IF you are required to have a CDL or not (consult your local DMV for specifics).

M
Right! This is why I said the max capacity rating (which is 26,500) is NOT the number to determine whether I have to get a CDL or not. Once the vehicle is converted and weighed, this number is the determining factor.

I have googled similar bus capacities and dimensions. The empty weight was between 15K & 16K. That was empty weight without passengers.

In my case, the bus will be gutted and there are no passengers....therefore weighing under 26,000
SadieHawkinsSC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 09:01 AM   #4
Bus Nut
 
M1031A1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Katy, TX
Posts: 838
Year: 1989
Coachwork: Thomas
Chassis: Saf-T-Liner ER
Engine: 3208 CAT/MT643 tranny
Rated Cap: 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieHawkinsSC View Post
Right! This is why I said the max capacity rating (which is 26,500) is NOT the number to determine whether I have to get a CDL or not. Once the vehicle is converted and weighed, this number is the determining factor.

I have googled similar bus capacities and dimensions. The empty weight was between 15K & 16K. That was empty weight without passengers.

In my case, the bus will be gutted and there are no passengers....therefore weighing under 26,000
On the contrary, what the data plate says for maximum capacity IS what goes as far as the Feds are concerned. It IS the number that determines IF you need a CDL crossing state lines. If you are not crossing state lines, then the state you live in will determine if you need a CDL or not.

One other caveat:

Does the bus have air brakes? If so the point to all this is moot. For business purposes (i.e. making money with said bus) CDL required. End of story.
__________________
Firearms stand next in importance to the Constitution itself. They are the American people’s liberty teeth and keystone under independence. — George Washington
M1031A1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 09:17 AM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by M1031A1 View Post
If you are converting ANY vehicle above 26K pounds for ANY business of ANY kind you are required by federal law (going across ANY state line) to have a CDL. IF you are not dong interstate commerce, then your state dictates IF you are required to have a CDL or not (consult your local DMV for specifics).

M
Quote:
Originally Posted by M1031A1 View Post
On the contrary, what the data plate says IS what goes as far as the Feds are concerned. It IS the number that determines IF you need a CDL crossing state lines. If you are not crossing state lines, then the state you live in will determine if you need a CDL or not.

One other caveat:

Does the bus have air brakes? If so the point to all this is moot. For business purposes (i.e. making money with said bus) CDL required. End of story.
Copied this from the SC DMV website.

Commercial Driver's Licenses have one of the following classes:
Class A
Any combination of vehicles with a Gross Combination Weight Rating (GCWR) of 26,001 pounds or more provided the GVWR of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds. May also operate a three-wheel vehicle (excluding a two-wheel motorcycle with a side car).

Class B
Any single unit vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, or any such vehicle towing a vehicle not in excess of 10,000 pounds GVWR. May also operate a three-wheel vehicle (excluding a two-wheel motorcycle with a side car).

Class C
Any single vehicle, or combination of vehicles, that are not Class A or B vehicles, but either designed to transport sixteen or more passengers including the driver, or are placarded for H hazardous materials under 49 CFR, part 172, subpart F of the Motor Carrier Safety Regulations. May also operate a three-wheel vehicle (excluding a two-wheel motorcycle with a side car).


Vehicle Description

Class License Needed to Operate Vehicle



A



B



C


GCWR 26,001 or more - combination vehicle towing a vehicle in excess of 10,000 pounds GVWR

X


GVWR 26,001 or more - single vehicle or combination towing vehicle 10,000 pounds or less GVWR

X


GVWR 26,000 or less - designed to transport 16 or more passengers

X


GVWR 26,000 or less - placarded for hazardous material



X



Note: Gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) is defined in SC Code of Law, Section 56-1-2030, item 16 as the weight or the value specified by the manufacturer as the maximum loaded weight of a single or a combination vehicle. The gross vehicle weight rating of a combination vehicle (commonly referred to as the "gross combination weight rating") is the gross vehicle weight rating of the power unit plus the gross vehicle weight rating of a towed unit.

Ok the GVWR is the MAXIMUM LOADED WEIGHT correct? So the DMV does not go by the actual weight of the vehicle but by how much the vehicle can actually hold?

So it does not matter that my vehicle weighs only 16,000lbs per the weight station, because of it's ability to hold up to 26,500lbs....a CDL is required?

And I'm not sure about air brakes. I will definitely talk to the folks at the DMV here in SC though
SadieHawkinsSC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 09:38 AM   #6
Skoolie
 
wunderhut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Farmington, IL
Posts: 152
Year: 1990
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: AARE 3903
Engine: Cummins 6CTA 8.3
Rated Cap: 84
Quote:
Originally Posted by SadieHawkinsSC View Post
So it does not matter that my vehicle weighs only 16,000lbs per the weight station, because of it's ability to hold up to 26,500lbs....a CDL is required?
That is correct.
__________________
wunderhut is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2016, 09:43 AM   #7
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by wunderhut View Post
That is correct.
Thank you!
SadieHawkinsSC is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
cdl

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.