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Peterbilt HDT ? - regulations


DIESELSUBMARINER

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Hello Fellow forum members,

 

first post here..

 

I will be getting my Teton Fifth wheel in a couple weeks and started to do research on tow vehicle.

I know a lot here swear on Volvo Trucks, but I prefer the old classic Trucks, even though they might ride a little rougher and don't have all the amenities...

As for the choice of vehicle, I would like to find a 359 Peterbilt single wheel flat top, with a short sleeper. Mid / early 80's model. Maybe even find a day cab single axle and add a flat top sleeper myself.

My question would be, if anybody could point me in the right direction, as to what is required to get his Truck licensed as a RV in the state of Florida.

Also, I read, that it would be recommended to get a dual axle instead of a single and remove one axle, due to the ratings of the suspension... ?

Another issue I found is that the rig, while being registered is not supposed to have a fifth wheel hitch on it ? do I install a gooseneck first and later a fifth wheel after registering , or how do I approach this issue?

 

thanks for all the help in advance.

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Good morning, Diesel Submariner.

 

Welcome to the HDT Forum! There is a phenomenal collection of the best HDT information on the Internet within. One area, which also covers your question regarding registering a HDT as an RV in Florida is found in the HDT Resource Guide, http://www.hhrvresource.com/.

 

I personally found the bureaucracy in Florida so challenging that I finally changed my domicile to Texas, and had no problems whatsoever with registering my Volvo VNL 670 as a motohome. We are now domiciled in Colorado, and will be registering the vehicle here. I've already communicated with local county folk, and they advised that since it is already titled as a motorhome, it will easily transfer to this State.

 

Wishing you the best with your move to the "dark side." It's one of the best decisions I've ever made!

 

Regards,

 

Michael

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From my understanding of the Florida regulations, you can't have a fifth installed at any time if the truck is registered as a motorhome. Before or after the registration doesn't matter. A Motorhome is only allowed to bumper pull in Florida. That is a limitation that hasn't stopped some of our members on here though so I might be reading them wrong. The Florida licensing and title division should be able to answer that question for you.

 

As far as the axles go, all of the newer, single axle trucks will have a 23K rear. The tandems will either be 38K or 40K and when singled only have 19K or 20K capacity. I am not that familiar with early 80's Pete's though so that might not hold true in that time frame.

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GOODMORNING DIESELSUBMARINER!

WELCOME ABOARD!

My best guess would be a Peterbuilt Forum as well as a Vintage Truck forum. for starters.

Right off the get go I don't remember reading anything regarding 5 th. wheel removal. There are 4 out of 6 items required to be eligible for an "RV" designation, dictated by the "D.O.T. Of the 6 there is no hard an fast way you need to be in order to comply, you do have "some" leeway.

The DOT. rules can be found/regulation in rules for the state you will register in. Those basic rules cover the entire U.S.A. and mostly all states defer to the federal code. I am sure others will chine in with more on this.

You don't really want to use a commercial 5 th. wheel with an RV, the rv structure isn't built to handle the torque exerted by the commercial 5r. A day cab by itself , well you can get it plated as a truck but I doubt you will be able to get an RV designation. With a sleeper type truck it is much easier to satisfy the DOT RV requirements. My Kenworth has been set up to the DOT regulation and is titled and licensed as a motor home. Truck license plate 40K gross = $1100 yr. in IL, RV motor home plate = $102. yr.

Rv motorhome Ins. $400. yr. as opposed to probably $1000. yr for a truck.

We do have some forum members with long nosed trucks set up much like you wish. I would suggest poking around in the "RG" photo pages where there are over 350 member trucks on display.

 

HAPPY TRAILS

GOOD LUCK

roadfitter

 

PS: Keep those cards an letters coming!

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Thank you Guys for the warm welcome.

 

This is some good info so far. As for the truck: I have seen day cabs for sale locally for a reasonable price. My thought is, that a longnose Daycab has already a "shorter" Wheelbase. Now if I add a small Sleeper behind the Day cab myself, I still have sufficient space behind the sleeper to add toolboxes and storage and still can pull a fifth wheel.

As for the hitch itself, i intend on installing something along the lines or a trailer saver or Air-Safe hitch.

 

Eventually i will check with the local DMV, but for now try to find the answers here, as the DMV is always overcrowded with extreme waiting times :-)

 

 

thanks

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The first two replies are dead on. Check the resource guide for more info and Florida says "no" to an RV with a 5th wheel hitch. You will probably have a hard time getting a day cab registered as an RV. The "4 of 6" rule also varies state by state. Texas has no such requirement to convert a truck tractor with a sleeper to an RV.

 

And look at the ET hitch before you decide on something else. It is made specifically for our type of truck and usage.

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thank you ,

i would not plan on registering a Day cab. as stated before, i rather buy a daycab, add a sleeper and then register it as a RV with sleeper. Unless of course this would be not possible due to the VIN showing it as a Daycab. in that case, i have to sind a truck, that comes as sleeper from the factory.

thanks for the hitch info, i have a look at it.

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HI

The main problem with a local "day cab" is in the rear end gearing. Highway gearing is much easier on fuel economy. My Kenworths top 10th. gear is .72 I doubt you will be able to get anything near that high in a day cab tranny. Just my thoughts.

I don't know where you hail from but I would strongly suggest a visit to our October National HDT RALLY in Hutchinson, KS.

Starts Oct 9 th. I believe. You don't need a truck or an RV to attend. You will not be alone we often have several couples an singles attend. The information you will get there will help you to understand better what you might want to do, and save you a lot of head scratchin. Lots of hands on. In the mean time check out the 350+ photos in the RG. lots of ideas.

 

HAPPY TRAILS

roadfitter

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Finding a daycab and converting it may be more bother than it's worth. There are plenty of long nose trucks available, and they'd be easier to convert.

 

As to the gearing item, day cabs can have tall (lower numeric ratio) too. My Mack will run well over 80 mph, not that I would ever try it.........

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Thanks againstin for all the info. This site is great.

I did also looked at the resource page mentioned above.

It appears that it is hard to register a hdt truck down here in Florida, but it's not impossible.

My question would be here in regards to the hitch. Florida apparently does not allow a fifth wheel hitch. Only a bumper pull ... This does not make sense as the reason to go to an hdt is due to a large 5th wheel and wanting to be safe...

Is there anybody here that went through the Florida registration ? How am I going to handle the fifth wheel issue ?

 

As for the truck, it makes sense what you guys describe, to just convert an Otr truck instead a day cab due to gearing issue... Even though I can get a single axle and a sleeper for less than a Otr truck.. :-)

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Hello Diesel Submariner, I'm one of the few that run an old truck, '83 KW W900B w/Cat 3406b, 15 spd (RTO14615), Eaton 355 rears (tandem), 60" flat top. This truck would have been new a couple of years after I started driving professionally. I purchased this particular truck as a play toy before I knew I would end up pulling a fifth wheel. I worked with a rural Colorado county to have it re-titled as a Motorhome back when it was fairly difficult to do here. I've never driven an electronic controlled truck, and probably never will. I prefer tandem drive axle trucks just on looks alone, but that's a personal preference. I still need to design a partial or full bed and work the truck over for paint and dressing up.

 

Also, Mickey and Bonnie Meredith were at the 2015 National HDT Rally with their 1984 Pete that was singled and dressed up very nicely. If you browse the 2015 Rally website and associated photos you could probably find it. If I recall, he runs a 3406b as well, mated to a 13 speed. I don't remember what state he is domiciled in, or what technical status he has on the title for his truck though.

 

So, there are a few of us that run antiques. I'd ask you to think long and hard about what you want to do with your truck before getting a single drive axle set up, or singling a dual.

Good luck with your search for the perfect truck, and possibly the perfect domicile!

Damian

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Thank you Damian,

I am on the same opinion as you are. I do not like computer controlled trucks and even do not like the computer in my 96 power stroke ford. That is the reason I want an older rig with manual engine..

My goal would be not only to pull my fifth wheel, but also fix it up eventually as a show truck, registered as rv and travel ultimately the country .. It will be a long project to get it to where I would want it, but will be worth it in the long run I believe.

I appreciate the input on the single / dual . I thought of using single to reduce the overall length and being able to drive the truck around , while on vacation and the trailer parked at the camp ground.

 

Thanks

Stefan

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Stefan, Florida seems to be of the opinion that a "toter" is a "truck", not an "RV". And an RV, or motorhome (imagine a bus) can not pull a fifth wheel.

 

 

I thought of using single to reduce the overall length and being able to drive the truck around , while on vacation and the trailer parked at the camp ground.

It will definitely shorten your wheel base, but Damian is right. Think your plan through thoroughly before pulling the trigger. It is hard to un-do. Now, that being said, I singled mine to the middle position and have no regrets.

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DIESELSUBMARINER The easiest way would be to find a truck you could live with that is already titled as a M/H. That is what I did here in Va. Va is really hard to convert. When did you ride Diesel Boats? I spent 30 years on sub tenders. Nuc fast attack and nuc boomers. Ever in Norfolk, Charleston, Kings Bay, Holly Lock, or New London? Did you ever ride a nuc? Retired Navy? Is all I do ask Questions? Not really. If you could get to the National rally that would really answer a lot of questions for you. Great having you aboard. I know a few d boat sailors but the ranks are getting smaller. So you take care of yourself. Pat

 

 

The Old Sailor

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thanks again Guys,

 

as for the question of a Tow Vehicle in general, i was considering first a MDT or even just a F550. But either would only be a temporary solution, until i finally find me an old Pete :-) It has just always been my preference.

Im sure anything below HDT would be easier to tag and insure.. even with fifth wheel.

I believe it all comes down to my local DMV and how they handle it. Moving into another state won’t happening for a long time.. so i just have to deal with Florida.

 

As for the National Rally.. unless it is in central florida, at this time i won’t make it....

 

Old Sailer: i was 8 years in the German Navy, spend most of the time on Class 206 Diesel electric Submarine :-)

 

Stefan

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Big5er,

 

i see your point, a toter is a truck in the eyes of florida... then i wonder how they see a large Toter home, that has large living quarters .. and still have a short area in the back to pull fifth wheel?

 

I there a way to re-register it with a lower weight rating and then title it as a regular private truck? i though the limit was around 26.000lbs.

 

thanks

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Their are a few of us with older trucks. Mines a 1997 377A

With set back front axle which helps a lot with turning in tight spots.

I agree with the none electric motor but some electric is good. Mine has the ECU only which helps a lot with drivability and altitude changes.

As for sleeper watch the year. Mine is a unibuilt meaning the sleeper is atached to the cab more ridged with the air bags on the rear of the sleeper. Older trucks did not have air ride cabs. 8560DDF6-CF85-4121-99DE-1B58E5F55D08_zps

8AF3B3B1-D2E9-48BC-8506-DB7F89CFF229_zps

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Maybe do a Montana LLC . Save on taxes, no hassle with Florida regs.

 

If I was going to change trucks I might go older.

 

I would not go newer than 2002. Emission stuff is the problem.

 

And no Volvo engine as the local truck repair shops probably not going to look at it. So then you are stuck with only Volvo shops.

 

This is only my thoughts.

Safe Travels, Vern

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i would not plan on registering a Day cab. as stated before, i rather buy a daycab, add a sleeper and then register it as a RV with sleeper. Unless of course this would be not possible due to the VIN showing it as a Daycab. in that case, i have to sind a truck, that comes as sleeper from the factory.

 

Paccar serial numbers don't indicate whether or not a truck has a sleeper. Items like the make (Pete or KW), model, tractor or straight truck, and engine family are all in there, but not the cab configuration.

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Again, thank you guys for all the valuable answers. This gives me a lot of information to eventually make a good decision.

As for the titling in Florida , HDT seem to be realy an issue . It appears that as long you stay below 26000lbs I'm ok to get it as a privat truck.

I did see some Peterbilt 330 conversions, which are rated at 26k. This would be an alternative .. Not perfect but at least still a Pete :-)

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Love those 359's...

However depending on your size, you may want to check out the 379's also.

They allow the drivers seat to go back into the sleeper giving a lot more room.

I looked at a lot of them when I was HDT, but wound up with a Volvo instead, mainly due to the turning radius for older State Campgrounds and overall maneuvering..

However, still today when I see a 359 or 379 I drool all over myself :)

Good luck,

Cheers,

Bob

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Love those 359's...

However depending on your size, you may want to check out the 379's also.

They allow the drivers seat to go back into the sleeper giving a lot more room.

I looked at a lot of them when I was HDT, but wound up with a Volvo instead, mainly due to the turning radius for older State Campgrounds and overall maneuvering..

However, still today when I see a 359 or 379 I drool all over myself :)

Good luck,

Cheers,

Bob

377A uses the same cab as a 379 so my seat is set back into the sleeper for leg room. (I'm 6'4''). Just my axle is set back for better turning and a shorter hood.
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Here's what your looking for 359 with 36" Sleeper and old school as your going to get.

http://jacksontn.craigslist.org/hvo/5762017113.html

00606_djhqvqLttnY_600x450.jpg

But I like this one more.

Ca truck so no rust and factory single axle day cab. Its a 378 and not a 359. But most people would never know.

http://stlouis.craigslist.org/grd/5740845220.html

00a0a_ePO4giF31Or_600x450.jpg

But then you have this one.

http://tippecanoe.craigslist.org/grd/5736185002.html

00Z0Z_CjQVgvGbbA_600x450.jpg

And the best for last 359 looking every so fine.

http://jacksontn.craigslist.org/cto/5739851443.html

00v0v_4wle1GueWgL_600x450.jpg

 

Forgot to add Trailsaver allows you to use a gooseneck ball in place of there 5th wheel. With the new 5th wheel hitch it may be a option for you.

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