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As a MDT towing a 5'r are we required to stop and drive over the scales?  Any states that don't require this vehicle weight checks?  

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On EDIT:  Sorry for the long post, but there is no easy answer to this question.  See mid way through the post where I added a link with state by state general information.

 

If you come across a scale that has signage stating "All Trucks Must Stop" then you will have to pull in or risk being chased down (this assumes your MDT is registered as a truck, whether that be private truck or commercial truck). 

Just because you pull in, doesn't mean you will actually have to stop.  Often times when pulling an RV, you will be waved through with no issue (unless they think you are transporting the RV for hire - like a delivery driver).  Each state will have its own rules on what must stop at scales.  The rules typically include trucks over a certain weight rating.  For example in CA, you would be required to stop at all scales with any MDT (even for private use like towing an RV) because of the GVWR rating of the truck.  CA will see the truck as a big pickup or "motor truck" and in CA all pickups with a GVWR greater than 11500 lbs or more, unlaiden weight of 8001 lbs or more or not equipped with an open box-type bed not exceeding 9 feet in length (think pick up box) and all motor trucks must stop at scales.

In CA, the reasoning for this is the following: According to CVC Section 471, pickups are a motor truck by definition, which is required to stop at the scales per CVC Section 2813. However, all California weigh stations have signs stating: "No Pickups." So, if a vehicle meets the definition of pickup in CVC Section 471, it is not required to stop at the scales because of the signs stating: "No Pickups." If the pickup has a GVWR of 11,500 pounds or more, an unladen weight 8,001 pounds, not equipped with an open-box type bed not exceeding 9 feet in length, or the pickup bed has been removed and a utility body or flat bed has been mounted, then it no longer meets the definition of pickup in CVC Section 471; it is then a "motor truck" under CVC Section 410 and required to stop at the weigh stations.

The above (except for the All Trucks Must Stop signage) is specific to CA.  Here is a link to some general rules listed state by state that AAA put together.

Ultimately it is your responsibility to be familiar with the rules of the state you are traveling in and abide by those rules.  Many of us on the HDT forum avoid scales because we are able to register our HDT's as motorhomes.  This title change means the HDT is no longer a truck, but is a motorhome and thus exempt from having to go into scales.  This is not typically an option for an MDT because the cabs do not typically allow the installation of items required for a motorhome title conversion.

You may also on occasion come across a scale or a checkpoint that states "All Vehicles over XXXXX lbs" must stop.  In this case, you would also be required to stop if your combination was over the listed weight, regardless of registration type or use.  This instance would include RV's and other large recreational vehicles that wouldn't normally be required to stop at a scale.  This signage is fairly rare, but is used on occasion.

You will get some who tell you to avoid the scales at all cost and hope for the best.  If you are registered as a recreational vehicle like a motorhome (like a converted HDT), then I would agree with that.  In the MDT world, a recreational vehicle/motorhome title is unlikely so you are stuck with the truck rules and should follow those for each state.

Edited by Chad Heiser

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Chad has good advise and as always a very good write-up.  I will say that we've towed our 40' coach from WA to Florida and everything in between and never have stopped.  Not saying we shouldn't have, but never did and LEOs never bothered us....including while bobtailing to sightsee.

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in talking to a scale opperator, yes a chp officer.

i got stoped for a ID check.

he said if you bypass a scale in ca. if you look like a rv on vacation. no problem.

if you look like a commercial truck towing to a dealer, then trouble if you bypass a scale.

this is one officer at a major scale in central ca. so your millage will vary.

but if your tow looks like a pickup. no harm. 

if you have heavly moded your tow and it looks commercial then better stop.

 

other officers may say other??

 

.

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Good question. In Canada, I never go into a weigh station.

I have done as much as I can to make my truck not look commercial.

We will be hauling to Az, NM, and Tx  starting Nov of this year.

Is there and central place we can go to to get this information ?

 

Thanx.. 

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Canadian scales generally state “over xx,xxx kgs” registered weight. 

Sometimes out of province buses are invited in.

 

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Most states are only interested in weighing commercial vehicles at their scale houses.  I personally would not waste my time or theirs ever pulling into one.  I suppose if you bypassed a scale in a state that may have required private vehicles to weight due to a weight limitation, then possibly they could chase you down and ticket you.  But keep in mind that if you are not registered in that state and are a private (not for hire) vehicle then why would they possibly have an interest in you?   

I recently drove a new Penske truck 1,300 miles cross country.  I never considered pulling into any of the 10 or 15 scale houses I passed even though I saw similar Penske trucks in line.  They were leased "for hire" trucks and I was simply a private individual in a rented truck.  

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Since I am over 24K pounds, I am usually over the XXX weight.  I guess I will wait to be pulled over but haven't happened with the 5 provinces I usually go to the last 3 years..

Thanks Joe...  I will watch .. but I think I will adopt the attitude of the guys that are over length..  easier to ask forgiveness than permission..I am just a dumb tourist yaknow..

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We had an MDT for 15 years, we stopped once, was chewed out by weigh-master for being there and never stopped at a weigh station again.

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8 minutes ago, SWharton said:

We had an MDT for 15 years, we stopped once, was chewed out by weigh-master for being there and never stopped at a weigh station again.

:)

 

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8 hours ago, Grassy said:

Since I am over 24K pounds, I am usually over the XXX weight.  I guess I will wait to be pulled over but haven't happened with the 5 provinces I usually go to the last 3 years..

Thanks Joe...  I will watch .. but I think I will adopt the attitude of the guys that are over length..  easier to ask forgiveness than permission..I am just a dumb tourist yaknow..

Grassy - my truck weighs XX,XXX lbs, but it has no registered GVW because it is a private truck. Today I stopped at a brake check within a scale property because the sign said “all vehicles over 5500kg stop and check brakes”. The next sign stated “...trucks over 5,500kg registered  GVW report to scale.” 

I used the brake check but did not cross the scale leaving. Got a howdy wave from the officer operating the scale.

I interpreted “all vehicles “ to have a different meaning than “ trucks over xx registered GVW”

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9 hours ago, noteven said:

 “all vehicles over 5500kg stop and check brakes”

 

I haven't encountered that sign yet.. a good one especially in light of recent events however, I will watch for it. Thanks.

Truck on road today.. picking up my 5th...

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And then Alberta scales will say "All vehicles over 5500kg report" (not "licensed over" or "registered" , but "all") and then below "Recreation Vehicles Exempt"

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On ‎4‎/‎30‎/‎2018 at 12:02 PM, Grassy said:

Since I am over 24K pounds, I am usually over the XXX weight.  I guess I will wait to be pulled over but haven't happened with the 5 provinces I usually go to the last 3 years..

Thanks Joe...  I will watch .. but I think I will adopt the attitude of the guys that are over length..  easier to ask forgiveness than permission..I am just a dumb tourist yaknow..

I was never a dedicated truck guy back in "the day".  I was only certified to do level I and II federal inspections on commercial vehicles.  The few times I stopped in a weigh station to pick off a couple ratty looking rigs to inspect I just remember the scale master making fun of all the stupid RVers pulling across the scales.  

I would have never considered stopping an RVer in my whole career unless they were going about 90mph or I thought they were drunk.  

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On 4/28/2018 at 6:43 AM, FL-JOE said:

hey were leased "for hire" trucks and I was simply a private individual in a rented truck.  

most states still require rented trucks to stop.

your were lucky.

sure you were a privet person. but you were driving a commercial plated  truck.

Edited by packnrat

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Actually I believe this Penske truck had a regular truck weight plate on it (Indiana).  I am guessing that anything Penske leases long term for commercial purposes would have to tag it under their own business name plus have the commercial insurance.   When you lease a car instead of buying it or short term renting it you certainly don't keep a dealer plate on it.

The bottom line is, 90% of the scale houses in this country do not want private vehicles coming into their scales and congesting everything.  

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5 hours ago, noteven said:

When you blow by Canadian weigh scales with your rental truck shut the lights off at night.

Same in CA.  Over a certain weight, they are required to stop.  Even some pickups with a work bed on them are required to stop in CA.

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"Weigh Stations" are actually more than that.  As a truck is selected to cross the slow moving lane things such as vehicle registration, fuel tax decals, and even the slack adjusters on brakes are given a quick visual just to name a few and they will also from time to time check for "red" fuel in your tanks and read your "funny book" too. Weighing the unit is just a small part of pulling into the "chicken coops".

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I was flagged to pull into a weigh station on I-90 just east of Spearfish SD.  When I crossed the scales I was red lighted and followed the signs around back.  By the time I got parked there were 3 DOT walking out.... I noticed that none had notebooks or pens ready.....

I climbed down with notebook in hand and was told from a distance, not to worry about it, they saw the truck earlier in the day and wanted to see how the bed was built and to look at the hitch.  45 minutes later I'm on my way and there will be at least 1 if not 2 new HDT members upon their retirement.......

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7 hours ago, Alie&Jim's Carrilite said:

I was flagged to pull into a weigh station on I-90 just east of Spearfish SD.  When I crossed the scales I was red lighted and followed the signs around back.  By the time I got parked there were 3 DOT walking out.... I noticed that none had notebooks or pens ready.....

I climbed down with notebook in hand and was told from a distance, not to worry about it, they saw the truck earlier in the day and wanted to see how the bed was built and to look at the hitch.  45 minutes later I'm on my way and there will be at least 1 if not 2 new HDT members upon their retirement.......

Kind of a scary way to be a ambassador for our cause but nice to see their interest and you could educate them about our rigs

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i woild say abuse of "power". like a city traffic cop pulling you over just to look at your trick car.

said leo can get in trouble for doing that.

good they are intersted, if they realy were? but not a legal reason to stop you .

if anybody else gets stoped in this area we need to know about it as that would prove a pattern of abuse. not intrest.

 

please i am not a leo basher. i just hold any and all public "officals" to a higher and strict set of standards.

Edited by packnrat

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2 hours ago, packnrat said:

i woild say abuse of "power". like a city traffic cop pulling you over just to look at your trick car.

said leo can get in trouble for doing that.

good they are intersted, if they realy were? but not a legal reason to stop you .

if anybody else gets stoped in this area we need to know about it as that would prove a pattern of abuse. not intrest.

 

please i am not a leo basher. i just hold any and all public "officals" to a higher and strict set of standards.

Sign says "All vehicles over 10000lbs".  In motion scales with Pre-pass monitors on the highway.  Your cross the in-motion scales and the sign tells you to bypass or pull in.  It told me to pull in so I pulled in..... Then they saw the truck and wanted to look.  

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