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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > cab and chasis with utility body re-classified for scales

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Kayteg1

California > Nevada

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Posted: 10/26/17 08:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yeah, go to AZ, they will charge you "entrance fee" even if you are in the state for 20 miles, like driving I15

HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 10/26/17 08:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There really isn't any ambiguity or wiggle room here: CC with a utility box or flatbed has to stop at scales in California. Sure you can get away many times just bypassing them - as you can in a box truck or even a big truck. But it is illegal. It isn't just the inconvenience of getting pulled over, in California bypassing the scales when you are legally required to stop is a criminal offense, a misdemeanor. Are they going to arrest you? probably not, but they could.

There is some ambiguity on the new pickups - they do not meet the 11,500 GVWR limit for "Pickups" as defined in the CVC. If registered as other than a pickup body type, you will need weight stickers and have to (legally) stop at scales.

You can register most anything as a passenger car or RV, but in either case if you are caught with something else in the bed - it does not need to be commercial use, just hauling some 2x4s back from Home Depot - you are technically in violation of your license.

I went through this with my newer stock dually with pickup bed. 14,000 GVWR is listed on the door and the initial registration done by the dealer was body type "Commercial other" which is about the only thing that fit the letter of the law. The plates came with weight stickers and the law said I had to stop at scales. I spent 3 days at the DMV over about 5 months and got it changed to body type "Pickup". Now I don't have to stop at scales or put weight stickers on the door, but I might be in technical violation if I ever weigh more than 11,500 with something other than the camper in the bed. Even that could be argued: in the CVC a camper is a load in a pickup, in the Health and Safety code its an RV.

I have researched this extensively and have all the relevant CVC sections at my fingertips. CC with utility bodies have always had to stop at scales, it has just been weakly enforced. The problem with the newer pickups exceeding 11,500 GVWR is new, and the CVC hasn't caught up with it.

I really wanted to do a utility body on my truck but all this convinced me that it is impractical in California. You can continue to hope for weak enforcement, but getting arrested on the way to the campground puts a damper on the trip, for me.


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free radical

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Posted: 10/26/17 09:28pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Isaac-1 wrote:

There is an easy solution to this, don't go to California

Im in Ontario Canada and all pickup trucks are registered as Commercial vehicles,,dont ask me why..

Ive never ever considered stoping at any scales since I am not using the truck for comercial purposes ie geting paid for driving carying loads..

mike/kellie

northern calif.

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Posted: 10/26/17 09:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks HMS. I have no problem stopping and have have all the paperwork needed. Since you're local, it was the scales before Lucas Valley Road. Traffic was a mess for a few miles because it's commute time and to change accross a couple lanes is difficult there. Today I was turning in my buy-back VW so this was my last trip. Now I will be stopping there and possibly Cordilia while I'm driving the truck.


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HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 10/27/17 10:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Traffic is pretty much always a mess there, no? [emoticon] A few decades ago I used to figure 50 minutes from Napa to downtown SF, but those days are gone....

In California, all pickups are registered as commercial vehicles unless you "permanently attach" a camper in which case it can be registered as an RV, or under certain circumstances register it as a passenger vehicle and never carry anything in the bed (for example a Top Kick 5th wheel puller can be registered as a passenger vehicle even though its a medium duty truck).

With my 14,000 GVWR pickup, I had been tempted to pull past the "no pickups" sign into the weigh station to see what happened. I half expected then to look annoyed and wave me out of there. But I never did, not really wanting to document the situation one way or another with my name attached. In the end I got the local DMV to change the body type - the branch manager had to take it on and everyone in the branch was pretty clueless as to the problem, issues, and statues involved.

Redwoodcamper

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Posted: 10/27/17 03:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lived in California for 30 years. Driven many hundreds of thousands of miles in one ton trucks from one end of the state to the other. Never stopped at scales. Even with a couple flatbeds.


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HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 10/27/17 04:07pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can't tell you what the risk of interdiction is, but the law itself is pretty clear. From the OPs post it sounds like they may be starting to enforce.

A one ton is still a pickup - if it has a pickup bed and is less than 11,500 GVWR (and less than 8001 empty weight). Most new one tons won't qualify. A utility body or flat bed isn't a pickup by definition.

"CVC 471. A "pickup truck" is a motor truck with a manufacturer's gross
vehicle weight rating of less than 11,500 pounds, an unladen weight
of less than 8,001 pounds, and which is equipped with an open
box-type bed not exceeding 9 feet in length. "Pickup truck" does not
include a motor vehicle otherwise meeting the above definition, that
is equipped with a bed-mounted storage compartment unit commonly
called a "utility body.""

Here is the California DOT statement on the subject (bold is mine:

"DO THESE VEHICLES HAVE TO STOP AT THE SCALES?

PICKUP -- It depends on the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR), unladen weight, and bed of the truck.

GVWR under 11,500 pounds, unladen weight of less than 8,001 pounds, and open box-type bed not exceeding 9 feet in length -- NO.
GVWR 11,500 pounds or more, unladen weight 8,001 pounds or more, or not equipped with an open box-type bed not exceeding 9 feet in length -- YES.

Discussion: 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 meet 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.

PICKUP WITH CAMPER SHELL -- NO (May have to stop under certain conditions. Contact California Highway Patrol Commercial Vehicle Section for verification (916-843-3400))

Discussion: It can also display passenger vehicle plates, as long as the cargo in the bed is not being hauled for compensation.

PICKUP WITH CAB / CREW CAB WITH BOX-TYPE BED -- YES

Discussion: The utility or box bed has to enter weigh stations."

You may have gotten away with and may continue to. I might have taken that risk myself, till I learned the violation isn't a ticket - it's a criminal misdemeanor.

HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 10/27/17 04:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Also CVC 2813:

"...Every driver who fails or refuses to stop and submit the vehicle to an inspection when signs are displayed requiring that stop is guilty of a misdemeanor."

pigman1

Delaware

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Posted: 10/27/17 05:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Isaac-1 wrote:

There is an easy solution to this, don't go to California
Yep. Just one more reason to add to my already long list of "Reasons to NOTgo to California"


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2oldman

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Posted: 10/27/17 05:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

California is a beautiful state. Lots to like here.

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