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Old 10-27-2014, 02:07 AM   #1
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Default Overall length laws: 45 feet, 52 feet and 56 feet? What’s the truth?

I’m in Cali and DMV here says 45 feet max. Most state’s DMV page says 45 feet max as well, however Kingsley Coach and Motor Coaches for Sale by PowerHouse Coach have been selling 56 foot and 52 footers for years now. What is the secret here? I heard there is an Idaho DMV law that gives special permission to run overlength toters. Is Cali the only outcast?
MD police has one too(56 foot): http://www.pinterest.com/pin/515240013589139186/
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Old 10-27-2014, 07:33 PM   #2
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According to THIS SITE the legal length for an RV is 65' in Cali. Take it with a grain of salt since these sites are not always 100% accurate.....
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Old 10-27-2014, 10:27 PM   #3
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Don't ask, don't tell. There isn't anything on the title that says how long it is, is there? Just register it and hope you don't get busted by some cop that knows his stuff and wants to enforce it.
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Old 10-27-2014, 10:57 PM   #4
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I'm sure some of these conversions have traveled through cali. It would be interesting to hear their side of the story.
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Old 10-28-2014, 12:56 PM   #5
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Here is a link I found posted on irv2.com forum:
State Towing Laws for RVs
rv laws by state. looks like 45' is it for max length on a single unit. I know there are longer units out there, I have seen coach builders like Kingsley up to 50'. Anything over 45' you'd be over legal, but the odds of getting stopped would have to be exceedingly slim. The dot guys that inspect commercial trucks have no authority over RV's, and you'd need to find a really bored and/or ambitious regular cop to go "hmm, I wonder if that RV is 45 or 48'", and then take the time to pull you over and actually get out the tape measure. They both have plenty of ordinary law breakers to keep them busy with far less effort. There are a ton of guys on that forum with pusher/stacker combos in the 70-80' combined (65' is legal) range that claim towing all over the country like that for years with no issues. I've never been to CA, but they are reputed to be pretty tough on oversize rigs there. I'm assuming of course that the driver of a rig like that is smart enough to not get into a situation where you are stuck and blocking traffic in some tight place you should not be in the first place, where the cops get called to direct traffic around you or some such.
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Old 10-28-2014, 01:47 PM   #6
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A lot of times you can get away with being over length, over weight, or over width as long as you are not doing it blatantly or drawing attention to yourself. In other words drive normal and most LEOs won't even give you a second look. A lot of people driving RVs don't really know if they are legal size or not. Just look at the number of people pulling trailers with a 1/2 ton truck! Some can be legal, but a lot are over the axle weight ratings or the mfgr's gross vehicle weight rating. Minnesota RV laws do recognize the GVW as a weight limit.
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Old 10-28-2014, 02:31 PM   #7
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Thanks, this is mind boggling:
North Dakota: Motor Home Length: 50'
Wyoming: Motor Home Length: 60'
Yukon Territory:Motor Home Length: 26m (85'???)
California:Motor Home Length: 45'. Some exceptions or restrictions.( my question; what does this means)
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Old 10-28-2014, 02:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
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According to THIS SITE the legal length for an RV is 65' in Cali. Take it with a grain of salt since these sites are not always 100% accurate.....
Ha, that is not for single units. I'm specifically looking at single units.
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Old 10-28-2014, 04:35 PM   #9
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Don't ask, don't tell. Trust me.
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Old 10-28-2014, 04:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Don't ask, don't tell. Trust me.
There ya go. Act?? innocent!!
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Old 10-28-2014, 04:52 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vijay View Post
Ha, that is not for single units. I'm specifically looking at single units.
This is from that site:
Quote:
Motor Home Length: 45'. Some exceptions or restrictions
That looks like a single unit to me or am I looking at it google eyed?
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Old 10-28-2014, 07:54 PM   #12
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Quote:
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This is from that site: That looks like a single unit to me or am I looking at it google eyed?
Yes 45' is right data for Cali. I was referring to this comment however:
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According to THIS SITE the legal length for an RV is 65' in Cali. Take it with a grain of salt since these sites are not always 100% accurate.....
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Old 10-28-2014, 08:06 PM   #13
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Ah, good old "fat finger syndrome"....... I am good at that. 65' is listed right under the 45' statement so either I made a typo or I miss read what I read....
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Old 10-28-2014, 10:04 PM   #14
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Tom, you are correct about leo's not always paying attention to what is right in front of them. On a trip to Florida 2 years ago I pulled into the scale with my dually and 40' trailer and got the red light around to the stationary scale. So I'm sitting there sweating for a few minutes til the light finally turns green and I start to roll... and I hear "whoa, whoa, whoa! Back that thing up!". This can't be good. So I back onto the scale and get the "bring your paper work inside", and the first thing out of his mouth when I get in there is "hey, you know that thing weights almost 29000#?". Which of course I know, but I play dumb, "really?". So short story long, he didn't pay any attention to the fact that I was about 8000# over what the truck is rated to tow, but he was worried that I needed a fuel permit since I was over 26000#. And a trip permit. All about the money. Nice clean shiny safe looking rig, not all sagged out, didn't look overloaded. All about the money. $165 worth of permits and 15 minutes later I'm rolling my 29000# on down the road.
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Old 10-28-2014, 10:12 PM   #15
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Sometimes they are kinda observant... Many years ago when I first started driving for a living I was at a scale in N Dak. It was a small platform scale that only weighed one axle group at a time. I put the steering on and got the signal to put the drives on. The got on and I got the signal for the trailer axles. I just started moving and the scale master hollars on the PA "Hold it, Hold it, Hold it". I stopped and couldn't figure out what he wanted then he said "You're an inch off the scale on the right side. Back up and let's start all over again". The scale shack was on my left side. I have other stories too, but will save them for a later time........
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Old 10-28-2014, 10:46 PM   #16
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t I needed a fuel permit since I was over 26000#. And a trip permit.
What is this permits for? can you explain?
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Old 10-28-2014, 11:23 PM   #17
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I don't think anything about permits would apply to a motorhome. That's all commercial vehicle stuff.
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:12 PM   #18
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correct. commercial vehicle. I use my rig for my business as well and have to run d.o.t numbers, scales, cdl, everything. If you are driving across statelines over 26000# you need a fuel and trip permit for each state or an ifta decal for the year. I usually just wing it on the permits because I usually don't go that far out of state, but they got me that time.
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Old 10-31-2014, 12:57 PM   #19
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Way back when I was driving big trucks (been about 30 years ago) I was always told to pull over before the scale and walk in and get any permits needed. Once you touch the scale you are required to have the permits. I don't know if it is still that way, but maybe......
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Old 11-06-2014, 03:03 AM   #20
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Vijay,

The max length for a single unit RV in California is 45 feet, 65 feet if towing a trailer. A non commercial Class A drivers license is required for an RV of this size. If you exceed this length, you will not be able to legally register your vehicle in California. If you try to fudge 45 feet (or 65 feet overall), you are likely to have issues with the CHP. Commercial Vehicles are allowed longer lengths but have restrictions on where these vehicles may be operated. The fines for violations are substantial.

When 45 foot RVs first appeared in California, they were not permitted by the Vehicle Code in California. Several early adopter RVers had their A$$ handed to them over their oversize RVs. Eventually, the Legislature amended the Vehicle Code to permit 45 foot RVs with a non commercial Class A license.

RVs in California are have no current weight restrictions, fuel permits, or apportioned registration requirements. The key is RV registration for commercial looking vehicles being used as RVs. You are free to operate your RV in other states. If your vehicle is operated in support of a commercial operation, all rules for commercial vehicles and intra/inter state operation apply. If your vehicle looks commercial be prepared for a more than casual look from the Highway Patrol on occasion.

Other states may allow RVs to exceed 45 feet. However, an oversize permit are required to operate oversize vehicles temporarily in California. With the oversize permit, routes and times of travel while operated in California will be limited to those specifically authorized by CA DOT. CA DOT will check the requested routes at the time of the permit request to insure that the oversize vehicle can be operated safely on the desired routes and limit the temporary permit accordingly. Operation may also be limited to off peak times to reduce the risk to other motorists. There is no exemption for oversize RVs to these requirements currently in California.

You didn't ask about air brakes but 45 foot diesel pushers frequently have them. An Air Brake endorsement on your license is not currently required to operate an RV with Air Brakes in California.

Regards

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