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Old 04-16-2006, 08:44 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Getting Started...

For the past several years we have off-and-on shopped for RV's, and usually rent one each June for a trip to Virginia. I have four children so we need a lot of space. Usually we rent a class C but last year we rented a brand new Class A that retailed for almost $100,000. We were struck by how cheap it felt. A friend of mine mentioned something about school bus conversions, and I have been thinking about that since...

Now I have one. At this point it's still a school bus complete with yellow paint and stop sign

I guess one of my first concerns should be about titling it, and insuring it. How do I go about changing the title to RV status? I live in Georgia. Do I need to remove the seats? Do I have to install plumbing/generator to qualify as an RV?

By the way, this is a great forum, and I appreciate all of the great information. I'll have a lot more questions...
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Old 04-17-2006, 08:37 AM   #2
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Congratulations on your purchase! Now the fun begins...

The best places to find out about re-titling requirements are your state DMV and your state legislature website. Call the DMV and be p-a-t-i-e-n-t. If you get a sympathetic person in the Title division, they can be an invaluable source of information. You may be able to contact them by e-mail, which is helpful, because if they send you the rules by e-mail, that is a nice document to have when the local DMV person has no idea what is required.

Go to your state legislature website and look up the state motor vehicle laws AND regulations. The laws may be general or specific, but the Highway Department regulations will be pretty specific, and they will be what the local DMV people are going by.

Have fun!
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Old 04-17-2006, 09:36 AM   #3
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jody, congrats on the new edition to the family. each state is different as far as r.v. titles. some real easy to do , some alittle more.but it can be done.erics advice is probably best. after i got my bus (i live in oregon) getting the rv titleing was easy in oregon but getting insuance was a pain. the local progresive- allstate- ect. agencys wont touch it so i started looking at peoples web sites with bus conversions and finaly i e-mailed this ol boy that had been running around the pacific northwest for years with this old international bus called the bicycle bus. how do you insure that thing ??? (most states now will impound your rig with no insurance)he told me to join the good sam club and then i would be elligable for there insurance which is GMAC. this is what i did and they fixed me right up. it only cost 20 a year for the good sam club(YOU DONT HAVE TO BUY ALL THE OTHER JUNK THEY SEND YOU) but you do get a discount on your GMAC insurance. it costs me a little over 20 dollars a month for liability for my 84 crown supercoach. cheaper than my geo metro work car.my bus is insured all year long to. hey good luck ,and have fun--john
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Old 04-17-2006, 10:05 AM   #4
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Thanks for the info. I'll start making some phone calls. Eventually the conversion will be complete, but that's going to take time, and I'd like to have a legally drivable bus between now and completion (do they ever actually ever reach completion?). We could actually start using it as soon as I add floor coverings and some basic furniture, and the rest (electrical/plumbing etc) could be finished as I have time. I have a lot to learn...
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Old 04-17-2006, 11:43 AM   #5
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Major snag. The state DMV rep that I spoke with informed that there is no way to change the title. Period. She also had no clue as to whether I would need a CDL to operate it with a bus title.

I need help here.
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Old 04-17-2006, 01:07 PM   #6
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My suggestion is that you call another office. Someone probably just didn't know how to go about doing it or didn't want to. I know in my state not only do they issue new titles, but they require it if you so much as swap axles under your truck from say a half ton to a one ton unit. They even issue a new VIN. If I were you I'd just try calling around to some other offices. There are two within the same distance of me (same town, actually) but only one is worth going to.

Best of luck.
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Old 04-17-2006, 02:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jody
Major snag. The state DMV rep that I spoke with informed that there is no way to change the title. Period. She also had no clue as to whether I would need a CDL to operate it with a bus title.

I need help here.


GA DMV Regs

http://www.dmvs.ga.gov/rules/

GA regs on "rebuilt" vehicles

http://motor.etax.dor.ga.gov/motor/t...ed/rebuilt.asp


If your vehicle is a 1985 or earlier motor vehicle, a title is not required.

http://motor.etax.dor.ga.gov/motor/titles/required.asp

How to register your vehicle here....

http://motor.etax.dor.ga.gov/motor/r...quirements.asp

And the BEST... You should download the manual and figure out what parts apply to you (or what parts you can convince someone at the DMV apply to you).

http://motor.etax.dor.ga.gov/forms/p...%20Portion.pdf

Look at the information on P119 about rebuilt vehicles. This might be the way for you to go.
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Old 04-17-2006, 02:56 PM   #8
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The bus is an '88 model...

But those regs are just what I need to see. It'll make it alot easier to discuss it with them if I can quote chapter and verse.
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Old 04-17-2006, 08:33 PM   #9
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It pays to pay them to be nice to you

I registered mine in california as an O for other I assume. I did this at the AAA office which is mainly what I use AAA for, avoiding the DMV. You see my hundred dollars a year (includes RV coverage) mostly is so I don't have to ever go to the CA DMV except under dire circumstances. I pay them to be nice to me. so when I walked in I was greeted by an attractive young smiling receptionist who took my info and asked me to sit down in one of their exceedingly comfortable chairs to peruse their collection of magazines, books, and maps. 5 minutes later I was called over to one of their friendly and knowlegable staff members who apon learning of his task took a moment to look confused and then proceeded to figure out a way to make it work. I walked out 10 minutes later with a license plate tags and registration. I was able to get a few more errends run that afternoon despite it being after 4 pm. I can't recommend their services enough.
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Old 04-24-2006, 12:41 PM   #10
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it's in my driveway

I still haven't solved all of the registration issues yet... but I did go pick up the bus yesterday. Here's a link to the bus:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...tem=4630467572

No apparent fluid leaks, and no smoke. Everything works. I topped off the power steering fluid and installed a new battery and drove it home.

I was a little nervous driving it so far (from Kentucky Lake to NW GA) but it made the 300 mile trip with ease. I came across Monteagle on I-24 last night at about 10 pm, and just cruised up one side and down the other without a hitch. I have driven Class C RVs that sounded like they were going to come apart every time I hit a bump, and driven Class As that were too wide for traffic lanes... and were blown around by every semi that passed. Not this bus. It fits the road, it's solid, and it's unmoved by the turbulence of zooming semi trucks. It cruises along at highway speed with no problems. I experimented with various speeds. 65 with ease, but the RPMs are a little high there. I finally settled on 55 and that didn't stress the bus (or me) at all.

No tag, saw a few cops... no problem

Initially I'd like to:

Get the title/insurance/tag thing resolved

Remove most of the seats

Get it all cleaned up and carpeted

Figure out a way to add some outlets and a shore line (I'll post a whole topic about that)

Beyond those issues, it's going to be a long term project, with plenty of time to plan and scheme.
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