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Old 08-31-2012, 09:16 AM   #1
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Certified weight slip

So I'm moving along on the bus conversion. The NJ motor vehicles says that I need a certified weight slip. I never got one, but they won't change the vehicle classification until I do.

How am I supposed to get a certified weight slip if I don't have plates to drive the vehicle TO the weigh station? Everything else has seemed manageable except this. Seems like my options are to either put auto plates on the vehicle (which I'm sure if I get caught by the state troopers with a suspicious brown bus, I'd be in trouble), or I get it towed. Which will require one of the larger tow trucks and probably cost $$$$ .

Any ideas?

I happened to get a complaint from the zoning official about the 'unregistered school bus' and so I'm trying to get the registration moving along.
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:22 AM   #2
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Re: Certified weight slip

Not sure how they do it there but in TX we can get a 3 day temp plate from the registration office to do such things. I think its a load of crap but it would be a way to not get pinched by the man. Call your registration office and see what they suggest?
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Old 08-31-2012, 02:03 PM   #3
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Re: Certified weight slip

Up here it's $20 for a 24 hour permit. allows you to move vehicle etc within the provincial borders. no joyriding though! lol
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Old 08-31-2012, 09:05 PM   #4
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Re: Certified weight slip

Temporary registration would be fine except I don't have a CDL. It's a catch-22. You can't drive a school bus, but it can't be considered a motorhome until you (among other things) drive the school bus to a weigh station and get a slip. The public (police-run) weigh stations are few and far between, but I'm hoping I can find a certified weigh somewhere on the backroads within 5 miles so I can take the bus for a drive early in the morning (stealthily) and get it done and over with. Unfortunately I live on a major rural highway and near two state police stations, so I have to be careful.

I asked the dealer I bought the vehicle from if I could pay them for 2 hours to drive the bus to the official weigh station, and am waiting to hear back. I'm also looking to find a private station nearby, but with the holiday weekend, some businesses are closed. There's a truck repair shop down the road that may have an idea.
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Old 09-01-2012, 07:09 PM   #5
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Re: Certified weight slip

I had a local CD driver do it for me, it cost me a 6 pack, after the driving. There are a lot of CDLs out there, check at your church, who dirves their bus, Check at the local bus barn, or go to a truck repair shop. Just a thought.
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Old 09-01-2012, 08:15 PM   #6
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Re: Certified weight slip

Or just drive it to the scales without the cdl... that is what i would do...
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Old 09-02-2012, 12:07 PM   #7
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Re: Certified weight slip

you still need a CDL when it is out of service and not moving passengers?

I know here you can drive a police car ambulance tow truck etc without the valid class license as long as it isnt for emergency or hire.
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Old 09-02-2012, 01:48 PM   #8
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Re: Certified weight slip

I would just be nervous about going to a police-operated weigh station and stepping out of what resembles a school bus. I know of a private station and I can probably take backroads to get there.

The other bind is that I never got a temporary plate (to put on the window), so . I might be able to ask the dealer for it, though, even though I bought it over a month ago. They unfortunately are only open Thursday - Saturday. I don't think the motor vehicles issues temporary tags, and with the questionable vehicle class I think it'd be a headache either way.
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Old 09-04-2012, 01:02 PM   #9
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Re: Certified weight slip

Today I was blessed. I got my plates for my bus! Now I can drive it around.

I was in this catch-22 where I couldn't get my title flipped (to a 'motorhome') until I got it weighed, but I couldn't get it weighed without plates. And it being a school bus, I'd need a CDL. Nobody could give me a straight answer how to get the bus to the weigh station. But I went into the DMV and asked if they could issue temporary plates. They said they couldn't, but was more than happy to give me permanent passenger plates (yay!) after I told them the bus no longer looked like a school bus. This is what I did:

1) Bought the school bus from the dealer 1/2 mile down the road. They drove it to my house and I drove the sales guy back.
2) Removed most of the seats (I have room for 6 people + 1 driver, now)
3) Removed the stop sign
4) Removed the emergency flashers (the ones at the top) and fastened sheet metal over the old holes.
5) Removed the safety bar that swings out with everything else.
6) Primed (and painted) the bus a color OTHER than yellow (brown in my case)

I also installed a sink and stove and beds, but I don't think this matters to get plates as a passenger vehicle. It does matter to get the title converted to say 'motorhome' instead of '54-passenger bus'.

7) Went to the DMV and told them I purchased a school bus for personal (motorhome) use, showed them the title, and explained everything I already did (they were specifically interested in the removal of the stop sign, flashers and the color of the bus). At that point they were more than happy to give me normal auto plates. Things will go a lot easier when you eliminate every excuse for them to not help you.

I just listed my auto insurance company/policy, since technically it's a passenger vehicle, even though there is only a technicality on the title. The registration card I got does say 'BUS' on it, but I'm hoping once the title is converted, then I will tell my insurance company that it's a motorhome, not even remotely hinting at it being a bus (other than it being a 'bus chassis', if they ask). I'd just refer back to the title saying 'motorhome' and hope they are satisfied with that.

On top of that, since NJ has had budget cutbacks, the only inspections are emissions, and it being a diesel vehicle means I'm exempt from obligatory safety inspection (other than 'self-inspection').

On Friday I will drive the bus to the weigh station. I've noticed in NJ they are few and far between and tend to be clustered around major highways near state borders or at major rest stops/service centers on the Turnpike, etc.

As soon as I get home I will put the plates on the bus and so then that will get the zoning official off my back for having an unregistered vehicle sitting in my yard. Apparently I'm on some blacklist for not keeping my yard kept up. I never liked grass. Especially not 3/4 acres of grass and weeds and intricate landscaping I'm somehow supposed to mow around. Not when the upkeep is more for the satisfaction of my neighbors than myself.
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Old 09-04-2012, 09:46 PM   #10
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Re: Certified weight slip

AWESOME!!! sometimes it pays to ramble on about what has been changed. that's how i found my stupid 15 passenger (w driver) limit from my DMV!
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