School Bus Conversion Resources

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-   -   Registration in ca help! (https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f18/registration-in-ca-help-11849.html)

Neeleysometimes 08-26-2015 01:39 PM

Registration in ca help!
 
Hello there! Newbie in ca needing advice. I don't trust the dmv! I have a 1992 Thomas 37 foot diesel bus.it was a church bus. The church who sold it to us told us that it has to be converted over to rv that is why they cannot use it anymore. When I went down to the dmv to register it in my name and find out what I need to do, they said I don't need to do anything that it is registered already as a automobile not commercial. They said I don't need to worry about the emissions ect ????? I just have a bad feeling they are giving me bad info and I don't want to embark on a big conversion if there are going to be major problems (like it can't be driven in this state) before I put a lot of time and money into it. Please anyone know anything??? Thanks Neeley

Stu & Filo. T 08-26-2015 01:45 PM

Where in Ca are you,I'm in Vacaville, If you bought the bus in Ca and it's already registered as a RV just pay the fees and your done, if you brought it in from out of state the a CHP needs to verify the Vin. The CARB specifically Exempts RV from the new diesel emission standards, they apply to Commercial vehicles only,,

Stuart

Neeleysometimes 08-26-2015 01:52 PM

I am in Atascadero and we bought the bus here in ca .

Stu & Filo. T 08-26-2015 01:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neeleysometimes (Post 121811)
I am in Atascadero and we bought the bus here in ca .

If it's already been reg. in Ca then your golden.:thumb::thumb::thumb::thumb:

EastCoastCB 08-26-2015 02:16 PM

Enjoy the bus, and POST PICS!!!!

juliol 08-26-2015 02:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neeleysometimes (Post 121809)
Hello there! Newbie in ca needing advice. I don't trust the dmv! I have a 1992 Thomas 37 foot diesel bus.it was a church bus. The church who sold it to us told us that it has to be converted over to rv that is why they cannot use it anymore. When I went down to the dmv to register it in my name and find out what I need to do, they said I don't need to do anything that it is registered already as a automobile not commercial. They said I don't need to worry about the emissions ect ????? I just have a bad feeling they are giving me bad info and I don't want to embark on a big conversion if there are going to be major problems (like it can't be driven in this state) before I put a lot of time and money into it. Please anyone know anything??? Thanks Neeley

You said its registered as "Automobile" not RV or MH as my, does it make any difference?, there is a reason why the church said it has to be converted to RV.

J

Vendelpatties 09-22-2015 11:53 AM

Ca registration is either commercial or auto. No MH registration. That would fall under auto, but what I was told it had to have a bed,toilet and kitchen all attached to be a MH. Otherwise it has commercial plates. I live in southern Ca. Anyone know where I can park my short bus. City ordinance says Commercial plates and rvs can only park on street for few hours. Need a place to park.

ol trunt 09-26-2015 07:41 PM

I just completed a bus conversion here in Ca. Like you, my original title said automobile, BUT under body type it said BU for bus and that does not exempt you from the smog requirements now being placed on diesel vehicles. To get that exemption, the body type needs to be changed to MH for motorized home. This change requires that the bus be permanently modified for living purposes as spelled out in CVC 362. I made the necessary mods and then hired a licensed vehicle verifier to verify the changes (avoided CHP and DMV inspection that way) and armed with that I went to DMV and had no problem with the body type change.

Another issue is that unless you have the MH (sometimes they use HC-- house car-- but both end up with the same definition), if you only have a class C drivers license you may be driving "out of class" unless your bus is registered as a MH. I'll bet that if you had an accident under those conditions your insurance would be void and you WOULD be cited for driving out of class. Take a look at the DMV recreational vehicle and trailer handbook https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/wcm/co...df?MOD=AJPERES and study page 3 very carefully as it is a little tricky to follow.

Back to the smog stuff again. Is your bus a two stroke diesel? eg Detroit Diesel 8v92 0r DD 6v71. These engines are almost impossible to retrofit with the particulate trap etc that is now required on commercial diesels (including buses) and is the main reason these buses are being sold off. The smog retrofit costs between $10,000 and $20,000 and effectively precludes the commercial use of 2 stroke engines in Ca. Thanks CARB! So far, once these diesel vehicles are converted to motor homes, they do not require smog cert.

I hope this has been helpful. Let me know if I need to clarify any part of it and good luck. Jack

P.S. The verification is done on form 31:
https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/wcm/co...7-3d970b8ea1a4

P.S., P.S. When you hunt for insurance, ALWAYS call your bus a MOTOR HOME because that is what it is. If you say bus, the insurance company will throw you to the wolves.

Neeleysometimes 09-29-2015 01:30 AM

Jack,
Thanks for your reply. When I looked closer you are right the title does say bu. For bus. But when I registered it they said it was exempt for having to be smogged. It did not have commercial plates because it was a church bus and not one that was for hire? I don't know i kept going round and round with guy at the dmv about getting the motor home classification and he just kept saying it didn't matter. It just seemed to easy . It is a Cummins engine

ol trunt 09-29-2015 12:07 PM

With the BU classification you will need an endorsement on your "C" drivers license to drive that rig. Also, if the GVW is over 26000# and/or it has 3 axles, you will need the endorsement. All the auto/bus title is doing is keeping you from having to pay commercial weight fees and doing a smog (I'll bet CARB will be telling you that you need all the smog stuff). You can put all that to bed simply by obtaining the MH body type status. Good luck and we'd all like to see some pictures. Jack

Stu & Filo. T 09-29-2015 12:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ol trunt (Post 125195)
With the BU classification you will need an endorsement on your "C" drivers license to drive that rig. Also, if the GVW is over 26000# and/or it has 3 axles, you will need the endorsement. All the auto/bus title is doing is keeping you from having to pay commercial weight fees and doing a smog (I'll bet CARB will be telling you that you need all the smog stuff). You can put all that to bed simply by obtaining the MH body type status. Good luck and we'd all like to see some pictures. Jack

As far as CARB goes before I bought my bus I called them directly and the guy on the phone told me exactly where to find the part where it specifically states that Motorhomes are exempt.

ol trunt 09-29-2015 01:14 PM

Stu & Filo. T, if you could share that info with me I'd appreciate seeing it in print--though I know it to be true. Thanks, Jack

Stu & Filo. T 09-29-2015 01:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ol trunt (Post 125202)
Stu & Filo. T, if you could share that info with me I'd appreciate seeing it in print--though I know it to be true. Thanks, Jack

Heres a quick link.

On-Road Heavy-Duty Diesel Vehicles (In-Use) Regulation

ol trunt 09-29-2015 03:07 PM

Thanks, it couldn't be any more clear than that. Jack

Stu & Filo. T 09-29-2015 05:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ol trunt (Post 125212)
Thanks, it couldn't be any more clear than that. Jack

If you poke around in other links it states it again or states For "Commercial Use"

bikeaddict 08-25-2016 04:24 PM

Having trouble insuring my 4wd short bus here in CA. It's titled as MH from Alaska. Can't seem to get insurance here?? Help!

TheGnome 01-07-2017 04:33 PM

Gnome needs help with this!
 
Hey I'd love to chat with someone on the phone about some of this if possible. My idea is to eventually convert the bus into a mobile boutique, but I'd like to see if it'd all be possible under the idea of a MH because I'll have a sleeping cabin as part of the bus. Is this commercial or private? Where are the lines drawn? And if it is marked as commercial at that point, does SMOG tests matter? Anyone know of what year of buses aren't gunna work economically if this would be considered commercial? My phone number is 512.297.3666, any help would be great!

Stu & Filo. T 01-07-2017 05:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bikeaddict (Post 160469)
Having trouble insuring my 4wd short bus here in CA. It's titled as MH from Alaska. Can't seem to get insurance here?? Help!

When I called for insurance the only place that would touch me was Good Sam
(National General) the 2 question they had were,

1. Is it a van chassie ? If answer is yes the No will not cover
2.Has suspension been modified in anyway? If answer is yes, Will not cover

Stu & Filo. T 01-07-2017 05:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stu & Filo. T (Post 178955)
When I called for insurance the only place that would touch me was Good Sam
(National General) the 2 question they had were,

1. Is it a van chassie ? If answer is yes the No will not cover
2.Has suspension been modified in anyway? If answer is yes, Will not cover

Sorry geuss I should have looked at the date on this one.

Fireratt 02-21-2017 11:43 PM

Hi there. I'm in CA also and am looking at an E350 shorty with a 7.3L . It is being sold with a smog cert. if I register it as a RV I have to have a kitchen, bed and bathroom? Would a compost toilet on the floor work? What would be the next step? CHP or DMV? Will the CHP test everything?
Thanks, any help would be helpful.


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