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tippey

Arizona's definition of an HDT as a motorhome

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Hello all,

 

I am looking at a Class 7 HDT singled and converted for RV hauling/toting. If I purchase it I'll be registering it in AZ. I've not found an official definition of what the AZ DMV requires to be defined as a motor-home versus a non-commercial truck. This rig in question has a sleeper/generator/sink/porta-pottie/microwave/heat & air but no gray water tanks.

 

I've read about the difficulty at times when working with a less than knowledgeable

DMV service agent that will err on the answer that they don't know the actual answer for.

 

Does anyone here know the skinny on the AZ ADOT minimum requirement for this truck to be registered as a motor home? AND... should I just register it as a truck since this particular truck would be a 15 year old truck. The AZ registration each year reduces the older a vehicle gets.

 

Thanks for reading and let me know if you might have a good source for members here that register either way here in Arizona.

 

Tipper

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Tipper, at the top of the main HDT page is a listing about the Resource Guide. It has an abundance of information...including the state by state experiences of members here. The resource guide says that AZ says no to registration as a MH. You might wanna check it out and see who posted that info.

 

BTW: Welcome to the forum :)

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Thank you Big5er. When I previously read that link I only considered it a table of available info on the requirement of a CDL. I did not think that it included a blanket statement that there are no considered rigs to be called a motor home. Sorry...

Tipper

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Hi again Big5er,

 

I did find the links on the HHRG on 'registration' in AZ. It clearly identified as you said that no HDT can be registered as a Motor Home. It had nothing to reflect information on registering as a PT (private truck) So I will assume (scary) that I will be able to register as a PT. we'll see and I'll jump on this thread to close the topic after I'm registered and smiling like a Cheshire cat shortly after bringing it home.

 

Thanks again Big5er for pointing me in the right place. Very much appreciated and we hope to meet you at some events this coming year. Might do Quartzite if we sell our Class A and buy our new big TH.

 

Tipper

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I think Bob Cochran (sp) is the expert on AZ registration etc. He used to be here often but no so much anymore.

IIRC you will need a "real" CDL and commercial insurance. Might search for his posts if they are still available.

Edited by Ray_nomad

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As I remember, Arizona, like a couple of other state, invokes a permanently mounted Black water tank as a requirement for "converted" from truck to RV. That covered Renegade type conversions and excludes trying to pass a sleeper-cab truck as a motorhome.

 

Arizona is not an HDT friendly state.

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As far as I have found AZ does not offer a non-cdl class operators license either. Rather than register in AZ you might look at SD or TX.

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Thank you all for the input. I think at best I'll have 15 days to get it registered somewhere. we're probably not able to get up to SD until spring to setup in person, camp, etc. I'll see if I am able to somehow get an estimate in advance of what damage it would be and how I'd study for the CDL if required. The Montana LLC is a thought and perhaps can be setup by mail/fedex but seems like an overkill at an avg. cost of 1200.00 plus dollars. I'll watch this thread for the next several days to check others who may wish to add. THANKS AGAIN GUYS!

 

Tipper

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some searching would be required, but didn't Dan Freeman register his 780 in AZ? (I could have the name wrong)

 

No. We have that truck now. It was registered as a motorhome using a Montana LLC.

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Thank you all for the input. I think at best I'll have 15 days to get it registered somewhere. we're probably not able to get up to SD until spring to setup in person, camp, etc. I'll see if I am able to somehow get an estimate in advance of what damage it would be and how I'd study for the CDL if required. The Montana LLC is a thought and perhaps can be setup by mail/fedex but seems like an overkill at an avg. cost of 1200.00 plus dollars. I'll watch this thread for the next several days to check others who may wish to add. THANKS AGAIN GUYS!

 

Tipper

 

 

You do *not* need to go to SD "in person" to register there as a non-commercial / private truck (NO MH reg).

However, if you want a DL from SD - you will have to physically go there to do that - which might be bad timing now

due to weather conditions.

 

One of the (3?) major miail frowarding companies (Ex: Americas Mailbox, in Box Elder) would be happy to fill you

in with details - and they will complete the registration for you for a (small) fee.

 

.

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Now this is good news for us to 'stage' this change-over to becoming an SD Resident. Thank you Pappy & Mark. Starting my day with an extra ray of sunshine! :)

 

Tipper

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A word of warning about AZ, we checked with an agent, got ourselves bumped up to a supervisor for confirmation and called the state head office to verify what we were told before buying our MDT in order to licence it in AZ at the lowest possible cost.

 

Got back from Oregon with our new MDT with all the paperwork written up exactly as the AZ DMV had instructed, verified and confirmed...

 

Got a different agent even though we went to the same DMV office and got told we had done it all wrong. The original agent was sitting there but refused to get involved, the supervisor was also there and instead of setting things right by what he had told us agreed with the other agent. A call to the DMV HQ got us nowhere as they said it was the call of the local office.

 

Bottom line we paid well over $2000 for our plates. A short diversion through SD would have saved us over $2000 on the plates, more on our insurance and let us make our move to SD earlier also saving on our AZ income tax.

 

DO NOT trust anything the AZ DMV tells you!

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I registered our Volvo 730 in Arizona in March of this year. AZ recognizes RV's and exempts us from needing a CDL; my standard operators lisence is all I need. However, come time to register the HDT and weight is all that matters. There is no provision that I have found in AZ law that allows for a large truck to be an RV.

 

They found us out. Someone among the Escapees' HDT members must have admitted to the AZ DMV that all of us owning these purported RV tow vehicles sneak off at night to do commercial hauling.

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Hey Stanley, How were you planning on saving momey in Arizona? The reason I as is that we are taking delivery of a Freightliner Sportchassis on Saturday. Ours is a used 2015 with 2200 miles on it (poor guy that ordered it took delivery last April got sick and is now in hospice care) and will be registered as a used vehicle. How were you planning on saving on the registration. With Arizona's relatively new law that all trucks 3/4 ton and over must be registered as a commercial vehicle, I am curious how you planned on saving some bucks...I would like to do that too. Thanks Dick

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I am really clear now that an AZ registration will not be my choice if I have a choice. We're just at stage one while we wait for our S&B to sell here in AZ. We will continue our path to being full fledged SD residents between now and the spring of next year. The SD address *& mail forwarding will get us started to resolve the registration which is our immediate requirement and that is a huge relief.

 

Stans' story above reminds me of how sad it is to do the right thing and then promptly be kicked in the behind by our institutions in exchange. Yes it's unfair so we bravely move on as fast as we can to get back to leading the life we love and loving the friends we've make along the way.

 

Tipper

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. . .Got a different agent even though we went to the same DMV office and got told we had done it all wrong. The original agent was sitting there but refused to get involved, the supervisor was also there and instead of setting things right by what he had told us agreed with the other agent. A call to the DMV HQ got us nowhere as they said it was the call of the local office. . .

. . .

 

DO NOT trust anything the AZ DMV tells you!

X10 !!!

That is precisely our experience.

The state MVD employees are totally incompetent and exist solely to further their own employment via whatever means possible.

 

Use an "Authorized Third Party and Port of Entry" location. These are independent contractor stations licensed to do vehicle title and registration. They are flat out efficient.

Avoid the ADOT MVD offices whenever possible.

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Sorry I have not been on for awhile but seen this and needed to respond.

 

In Arizona many years ago you could convert ad register an HDT like other States "but no longer.

 

You can register as a private truck just like a pickup. Not it will still show a commercial. In Arizona all vehicles 1 ton or more will be registered commercial except for a "real" motorhome.

 

I am still fighting the "motor carrier" fee which doubles the registration cost. Some do not pay this fee I just need to get to the commercial DMV in Goodyear Az. Not sure I could get it done in Holbrook probably will try as it is closer to my S&B.

 

As for drivers license it will require a CDL with physical. It is all based on weight. I can tell you if your trailer weighs over 10,000 lbs a class A. Actually to the letter of the law there is a lot of vehicle owners driving out of class LDT and HDT owners but fortunately this is being ignored.

 

For the physical I had a triple heart by-pass 2 years ago and now the physical besides normal stuff necessary I need a stress test and Cardiologist release and it is annual instead of semi annual. This is a Federal requirement. If like others States a CDL not required of course would not require a physical.

 

I hope I got all questions answered. I have lived in Arizona since 1966 and love it hear so will stay. Living here and a property owner makes a LLC in another State problematic.

 

Good luck.

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I got my KW T600 registered as an MDT. If my memory serves me correct,...I paid around $500 for a two year registration. It is registered as a Private Truck. I don't pay commercial registration, nor commercial insurance because when i titled and registered it,...I declared the GVWR for 25.5k lbs. You have to remember that you can declare your GVWR. If you've weighed your whole rig fully loaded, and you your TRUCK axles combine for less than 26k lbs,....then you can declare that, title it as an MDT. My insurance is <$1200/yr for full coverage on truck and trailer through National General.(2000 KW T600 and 2012 Keystone Fuzion 399)

 

On another note,...I know that we can't go by what our local AzDMV folks tell us. But I was told that if you don't have a CDL, but have an HDT registered as an MDT, that all you'd need to do to be "properly licenced," is to get an air brake endorsement. This doesn't apply to me, because I have a CDL. For all of the AZ RVers with Class C licenses who are looking to upgrade to an HDT, without the hassle of getting a CDL,...this may be the route that you'd want to look into.

 

I hope this helps out in your quest.

Edited by bigg-limo

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On another note,...I know that we can't go by what our local AzDMV folks tell us. But I was told that if you don't have a CDL, but have an HDT registered as an MDT, that all you'd need to do to be "properly licenced," is to get an air brake endorsement. This doesn't apply to me, because I have a CDL. For all of the AZ RVers with Class C licenses who are looking to upgrade to an HDT, without the hassle of getting a CDL,...this may be the route that you'd want to look into.

 

I hope this helps out in your quest.

If, and that is a big "if" since I am not familiar with AZ law, If their licenses go by weight, exempting only "RV"s then registering your HDT as an MDT "private truck" doesn't help. A "private truck" is still not an "rv" and therefore takes you right back to needing a drivers license based on the weight of your vehicle(s). And it appears that an HDT, unless registered as a "motorhome" (which AZ will not allow) will still require a CDL to be legal....in AZ.

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If, and that is a big "if" since I am not familiar with AZ law, If their licenses go by weight, exempting only "RV"s then registering your HDT as an MDT "private truck" doesn't help. A "private truck" is still not an "rv" and therefore takes you right back to needing a drivers license based on the weight of your vehicle(s). And it appears that an HDT, unless registered as a "motorhome" (which AZ will not allow) will still require a CDL to be legal....in AZ.

We all agree that rv registration is cheaper than private truck registration ...which is why registering as an rv is the goal with our HDTs. For the AZ RVers, thats where the road ends for us. I agree that an HDT "Private Truck" is not an rv. However,...you are still allowed to buy a Class 8 truck,...and title and register it(by declaring the weight) as a Class 5 or 6. Therefore, you will not be required to obtain a CDL. After doing that, it's no different than buying an F-650 that has air brakes. You'll still need an air brake endorsement added to your Class C license. I declared the weight of my KW when it was registered in Texas, and did the same thing when I registered it in Az. From the factory, it is 54k lbs and now it is 25.5k lbs. Im singled, with a hauler bed. When im fully loaded with my truck and trailer,...my truck has a combined 23k lbs on its two axles. If the declared weight is over 26k, then you need to upgrade your license accordingly. If it's under 26k, but with airbrakes,...an endorsement is all that would be needed. I guess if I understand you correctly,...then it is based on weight. As was mentioned earlier about the 2500 and 3500 trucks being commercial,...if you know that you're not going to be towing anywhere near max,...then you can declare your GVW at a lower weight to save money. Ask me how I know.

 

Seems to me, that going this route, is uncharted territory for the RVers on here, because it's not common. I can totally see why. In regards to CDL requirements,..when it comes to titling and registering an HDT as an MDT "Private Truck,"...it all comes down to "declaring" your weight.

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Not trying to argue but I believe you are incorrect. I went to AZ's web site and it plainly says:

A commercial driver license (CDL) is required for drivers of heavyweight vehicles, 26,001 lbs. or more gross vehicle weight (GVW), vehicles hauling a trailer that is 10,001 lbs. (GVWR) or more where the combined weight is 26,001 lbs or more, vehicles capable of carrying 16 or more passengers (including the driver), or vehicles required to be placarded for hazardous material.

That speaks to 4 different vehicle scenarios:

1 Vehicles that just weigh over 26,001 lbs,

2 Combinations of vehicles that weigh over 26,001 lbs where the trailer has a GVWR of 10,000 lbs or more

3 vehicles capable of carrying 16 or more people

4 vehicles carrying HM in quantities large enough to require placards.

 

Now, my HDT weighs about 18,500 lbs. My trailer has a GVWR of 17.600 lbs. Even if my trailer had an actual weight of 8000 lbs, that still puts my combined weight at 26,550 lbs. That meets AZ's requirement of 1) A vehicle, 2) hauling a trailer with a GVWR of 10,000 lbs or more, 3) where the combined weight is 26,001 lbs or more.

Nowhere does it say anything about "declared" weight. It talks about Gross weight of the truck (actual weight, maybe that is what you are calling your "declared" weight?), Gross Vehicle weight Rating of the trailer and combined weight of the two vehicles. You say your truck, when loaded is 23,000 lbs "on its' two axles. But the law is talking about the weight of the entire COMBINATION, not just the truck. So to be under the "combined weight" your trailer needs to weigh less than 3000 lbs because your HDT is not registered as an RV, it is a "truck" and not exempt from the proper class of license, as it would be if it were a "motorhome".

 

Also, according to THIS PAGE on the AZ web site, the difference between a Class A, Class B and Class C license is based on the GVWR of the vehicle, not on actual (declared?) weight. Therefore your KW alone, with its 54,000 lbs GVWR, towing no trailer, is still required to be operated by a driver who has at least a Class B CDL or better. Only a manufacturer can change the original GVWR, not a weight (scale) ticket or anythng else. In Texas, the actual weight (declared, as you call it) is used solely for registration purposes and has no bearing on the DL required. DL's in Texas (and it appears AZ also) are based on the vehicles manufactured GVWR.

 

There is a flow chart on Section 1 Pg 8 of the AZ CDL handbook which might explain it better than I did.

Edited by Big5er

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Not trying to argue but I believe you are incorrect. I went to AZ's web site and it plainly says:

That speaks to 4 different vehicle scenarios:

1 Vehicles that just weigh over 26,001 lbs,

2 Combinations of vehicles that weigh over 26,001 lbs where the trailer has a GVWR of 10,000 lbs or more

3 vehicles capable of carrying 16 or more people

4 vehicles carrying HM in quantities large enough to require placards.

 

Now, my HDT weighs about 18,500 lbs. My trailer has a GVWR of 17.600 lbs. Even if my trailer had an actual weight of 8000 lbs, that still puts my combined weight at 26,550 lbs. That meets AZ's requirement of 1) A vehicle, 2) hauling a trailer with a GVWR of 10,000 lbs or more, 3) where the combined weight is 26,001 lbs or more.

 

Nowhere does it say anything about "declared" weight. It talks about Gross weight of the truck (actual weight, maybe that is what you are calling your "declared" weight?), Gross Vehicle weight Rating of the trailer and combined weight of the two vehicles. You say your truck, when loaded is 23,000 lbs "on its' two axles. But the law is talking about the weight of the entire COMBINATION, not just the truck. So to be under the "combined weight" your trailer needs to weigh less than 3000 lbs because your HDT is not registered as an RV, it is a "truck" and not exempt from the proper class of license, as it would be if it were a "motorhome".

 

Also, according to THIS PAGE on the AZ web site, the difference between a Class A, Class B and Class C license is based on the GVWR of the vehicle, not on actual (declared?) weight. Therefore your KW alone, with its 54,000 lbs GVWR, towing no trailer, is still required to be operated by a driver who has at least a Class B CDL or better. Only a manufacturer can change the original GVWR, not a weight (scale) ticket or anythng else. In Texas, the actual weight (declared, as you call it) is used solely for registration purposes and has no bearing on the DL required. DL's in Texas (and it appears AZ also) are based on the vehicles manufactured GVWR.

 

There is a flow chart on Section 1 Pg 8 of the AZ CDL handbook which might explain it better than I did.

I totally forgot about the combination. Thanks for reminding me of that. The declared weight that I keep referring to,...is the new GVW that will go on your new title and registration,...not the actual weight of the truck. In regards to my KW,...if it's driven as a single vehicle, a CDL is not required to drive it, because it's registered GVW is less than 26k. Only a Class C with an AirBrake endorsement. If I were towing a trailer with enough hitch weight that put me over 25.5k lbs on my truck's axles, and got weighed by an LEO, then I would be in trouble because my truck is not registered to carry that weight. Yes my truck was originally designed for it, but no it's not registered for it. Therefore the class of registration would have an affect on your DL. Actually, a manufacturer is not the only one that can change a registered GVW for a vehicle. You can do that when you title and register it. In my case, I had my CDL prior to buying my truck. In that case, I lowered the class of the truck rating for insurance and registration purposes. Edited by bigg-limo

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I've got a bit better news Bob. While Arizona does not recognize HDTs as RVs for registration, the AZ Revised Statutes Title 28, Section 28-3102 creates an RV exception to the CDL requirement. For no good reason, the RV exception is placed in a separate section of the Statutes from the other RV and HDT regulations. As long as the vehicle is used only for personal pleasure no CDL is needed.

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