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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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Woodie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 104 Michigan lower
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2010-09-02          173668


I was using my brothers home built 6x15 single axle trailer hauling brush and logs and the neighbor comes over and tells me that 'my' trailer will be illegal in two years. I ask why what. He stated because of the 'mobile home' tires /rims and axle that are under the trailer. I was like "WHAT??" as I keep seeing ads in the auto trader magazine at RV surplus places they are selling stacks of these type of axles and tire/rim sets. SO I'm wondering if any one else has heard or has proof of the rumor. I've tried searching the Michigan state police and state MDOT web sites but get lost chasing lot of dead ends. Other websites just mention about having the DOT imprint on the tire. My brother and I don't relish the idea of reworking the trailer --but if we must then we want to get to finding a few extra $$ and fix it soon. (no fun paying the 'collection agent' with the tinkling lights..;-)). I appreciate any leads,info to support or discredit such rumor.

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7142 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2010-09-03          173673


Your neighbor isn't quite right, the trailer won't be illegal in two years.

It's illegal now, and in fact has been all along.

You won't find the info you're looking for on any DOT or Police site either. It's in the regulations under the FMVSS (Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards). It's an immense beast of a document.

Basically, all components of any licensed vehicle, not "farm use" or off-road, MUST conform to those standards. I.E. be stamped "DOT" or "V-5" or something to show that it complies.

Now that's not say anyone actually checks, but if they do, like following an accident, it could be a problem. It could (and likely would) also be enough for an insurance company to deny a claim.

Best of luck. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2010-09-03          173675


Further to Murph's last sentence, make a claim and expect the insurer to see if it can be legally denied. Your policy likely includes exclusions like telling a material lie on your application, operating a vehicle not in compliance with applicable regulations, and in rare cases being convicted of violating any statute contributing to the claim. In some jurisdictions they'll pay a third-party claim and seek reimbursement from the policy-holder. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2010-09-03          173682


Call the Mich. State Police Motor Carrier Division in Northville. Those are the guys who will know. What I know is it NOT illegal to have mobile tires on a trailer--I have them on my 12,500 dump trailer. Pretty sure MHT are DOT approved regardless---but will verify when I'm back in the yard.

What I also know is the feds are or have outlawed if you haul mobile homes the use of 7" wide tires which are lower rated compared to the required 8" wide which are not quite double the rating and supposed to last longer. Years ago I called the MDOT and asked about using mobile home tires and they said it is not an issue. But things do change. ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7142 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2010-09-03          173691


Quote:
Originally Posted by earthwrks | view 173682
What I know is it NOT illegal to have mobile tires on a trailer--I have them on my 12,500 dump trailer. Pretty sure MHT are DOT approved regardless---but will verify when I'm back in the yard.What I also know is the feds are or have outlawed if you haul mobile homes the use of 7" wide tires which are lower rated compared to the required 8" wide which are not quite double the rating and supposed to last longer. Years ago I called the MDOT and asked about using mobile home tires and they said it is not an issue.


EW, I think you're mixing up 2 different things.

MH tires & axles are for delivery of a new, unlicensed units only. As such they are not on a licensed vehicle and are allowed to run cheaper 'delivery' hardware.

The 7" wide tires were an issue only because of loads transmitted to the road surface. An 8" wide tire is +14% wider than a 7" tire is and so spreads the weight over a larger surface. Capacity is based on ply rating, etc., not width

For years all 14.5" tires on UTG style rims were generically called MHT's but that's not correct. They are available as 'standard' 12 ply tires also.

If you look at a true MHT, the sidewall clearly reads "Delivery Only" or "Mobile Home only" or something like that, and there is no "DOT" stamp in the sidewall either.

Best of luck. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2010-09-03          173695


Quote:
Originally Posted by Murf | view 173691
What I know is it NOT illegal to have mobile tires on a trailer--I have them on my 12,500 dump trailer. Pretty sure MHT are DOT approved regardless---but will verify when I'm back in the yard.What I also know is the feds are or have outlawed if you haul mobile homes the use of 7" wide tires which are lower rated compared to the required 8" wide which are not quite double the rating and supposed to last longer. Years ago I called the MDOT and asked about using mobile home tires and they said it is not an issue.
[QUOTE=Murf;173691]MH tires & axles are for delivery of a new, unlicensed units only. As such they are not on a licensed vehicle and are allowed to run cheaper 'delivery' hardware.

------Murf, then anyone hauling a used home is doing so illegally?

The 7" wide tires were an issue only because of loads transmitted to the road surface. An 8" wide tire is +14% wider than a 7" tire is and so spreads the weight over a larger surface. Capacity is based on ply rating, etc., not width

-------my sources tell me that the 8" are taller by as much as 1.5" which I know, and wider and thereby, in part, carry a heavier rating. I was told the 7" were lower pressure 70 PSI-ish (mine are 85 PSI) and 8" are sometimes 110 (as my other worn out sets are)

For years all 14.5" tires on UTG style rims were generically called MHT's but that's not correct. They are available as 'standard' 12 ply tires also. If you look at a true MHT, the sidewall clearly reads "Delivery Only" or "Mobile Home only" or something like that, and there is no "DOT" stamp in the sidewall either.

------the little research I did says that in Michigan at least, there is no specific law banning the use of MH tires or axles for other purposes. As far as DOT-approved, as the article I found pointed out, if it's used upon a highway it has to be DOT approved. Further, the MI law specifically states categories of tires that shall not be used on a highway: marked for "not for highway service" and "for non highway racing only", but nothing about MHS.

And speaking of "DOT approved" per se, I'm not sure there is such a thing. There is a DOT number, but that is not an approval, but for tracking for safety and identification---so I was told by the Nebraska attorney general a few years ago. I bought some "blemished" skid steer tires for my manlift. The company that sold them to me cut out the mold numbers (which destroyed the tires) which are linked somehow to the DOT, as they told me a. The company (actually several) removed the tires from a dumpster of rejected tires b. Defaced them by removing the numbers a c. Sold them. Titan was the mfg. and turned a blind eye to the situation, they were indicted along with the several "resellers". The AG wanted me to testify against Titan and the resellers, but my schedule didn't allow---plus I had to pay my own way! I hear they were a world of trouble.

I'm going to look into this a bit more come next week. I've never been wrong. Ok, ONCE I was mistaken. LOL ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2010-09-04          173707


If I can drive out on a tangent,

Recently needed a power liftgate so rented a truck. The rental terms said if I got a flat it was my responsibility. Ever heard of that? (And the mandatory insurance cost half the rental fee.) ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2010-09-04          173709


Auer, why would you NOT be responsible for a tire?

Case in point I did a dirt job for a couple the other day. They negotiated beforehand about what they wanted but feined lack of money (they both work and house is paid for). I do the work and they want more work than they negotiated for and figgered I would just do it for free. Uh-uh. Homey don't do dat. Suspicious of what was in this supposed "garden" they wanted flattened I told them I found two 6' steel angle in the area so for $50 more I would do it---but if a tire gets damaged, a new tire is $200--and I just spent $1300 on new tires and rims. They agreed to it. Lucky for them I didn't have an incident.

It's the same reason I no longer haul to the dump for hire--punctured truck or trailer tires--and one time an ell-shaped 4" x 6' cast iron sewer pipe came up and dented my new truck's door.

Back to renting: when I rent a piece of equipment from the Cat dealer or even a rental house, mandatory insurance is 6-10% of the rental cost. The Cat dealer has a $2000 deductible (found out the hard way when I overturned a miniexcavator and smashed the cab door). And the Cat dealer won't rent to you unless you carry two million in liability. Anything that the renter had a hand in breaking he's responsible for---and even some that he didn't---which have to be hammered out later and depends mainly on who you know at the dealer and how you stand as a customer---like scratched paint or dented body panels, or blown hydraulic hose that maybe was caused by the previous renter. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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auerbach
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2168 West of Toronto
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2010-09-04          173713


Not sure. What if the tire was failing unseen because a previous renter damaged it? Or the tire was defective? Or someone picked up a nail? Even if you drive into a marked obstacle, isn't that what insurance is for? ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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hardwood
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3583 iowa
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2010-09-04          173714


Maybe the tires are just fine but the roads are illegal. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2010-09-04          173716


Auer it would depend on the legalese of the contract I would think. And as far preexisting defect or injury, the onus (sp) would be on you since when it left the yard you are now responsible. This leads me the next point which is why I don't lend my tools---"it must have been broken BEFORE I used it". Reaaaaaaally now? ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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Woodie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 104 Michigan lower
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2010-09-05          173748


Thank you all for the "information/direction". It seems the best course of action as EW suggests, I'll prolly need to make a visit to the "men in blue ". But as with any beaurcractic 'shall' 'may' language it could become the circle of "ask the IRS 2 questions and get 4 versions".
Again Thank You for all your input which I have high regard for you guys as to having some very insightful, facts, views and opinions. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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earthwrks
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 3853 Home Office in Flat Rock, Michigan
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2010-09-05          173749


"Regular" state cops, sheriffs, and local cops that are NOT trained and certified in Motor Carrier Enforcement generally are NOT the guys to speak to. Like I said earlier, call the Northville State Police Post and ask for Motor Carrier Division, then ask for someone intimately familar--key words--with Federal Motor Vehicle statutes/regulations a.k.a. Federal Motor Vehicle Code.

A Motor Carrier Enforcement officer may not be familar with specific federal regulations. FWIW, some laws won't apply to you if you're not a commercial carrier with a GCVWR (gross combined vehicle weight rating of more than 10,001 lbs.) , but the tire thing I gotta think applies to everyone.

Keep in mind the trailer you have the tires on--its rating regardless of what the springs, etc. are rated for is soley based on the weight rating of the tires including the trailer and load. My 7" wide tires are rated at a surprisingly low 1,760 lb. While the 8" (I need to check) if I recall correctly are something like 2,800 or 3,600 lb. each. ....

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illegal trailer -wheels axles

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Woodie
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 104 Michigan lower
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2010-09-05          173751


Thanks EW... when I'm visiting family in school in Detroit , I'll make it a point to head over to Northville and speak to them in person. Thanks again. ....

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7142 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2010-09-07          173804


Jeff - "Murf, then anyone hauling a used home is doing so illegally?"

Answer - If it's now a licensed vehicle, yes. Bear in mind, almost all of this non-DOT hardware I'm talking about is only found on 12+' wide units and about the only time I've seen it on an 8' wide was when that unit was a "split unit" i.e. a 8' half, open on one side, which was then conjoined with another to form a 16' wide unit.

Jeff- "my sources tell me that the 8" are taller by as much as 1.5" which I know, and wider and thereby, in part, carry a heavier rating. I was told the 7" were lower pressure 70 PSI-ish (mine are 85 PSI) and 8" are sometimes 110 (as my other worn out sets are)"

Reply - The whole point of MHT's & MH axles can be summed up in one word - "CHEAP". That's why a MH has 3 or 4 axles when 2 'regular' axles would do the job. They (and the tongue as well) were often returned to the factory for reuse after the unit had been delivered to the customer.


Jeff - "the little research I did says that in Michigan at least, there is no specific law banning the use of MH tires or axles for other purposes."

Reply - There is, but it's one of those "hip bone connects to the leg bone" kinda things. All 'vehicles' must comply to the FMVSS, a MHT doesn't, ergo it's not legal.

Jeff - "As far as DOT-approved, as the article I found pointed out, if it's used upon a highway it has to be DOT approved. Further, the MI law specifically states categories of tires that shall not be used on a highway: marked for "not for highway service" and "for non highway racing only", but nothing about MHS.

Reply - A farm tractor tire, is not DOT approved either, but it's still allowed on a 'highway' because it's not on a 'vehicle'. Likewise you could use MH axle & MHT's on a haywagon on the highway, or on a piece of "road building equipment" since it's not a 'vehicle' either. A MH being delivered is not a 'vehicle' under the law, it's a house being moved. Different kettle of fish.


Jeff - "And speaking of "DOT approved" per se, I'm not sure there is such a thing. There is a DOT number, but that is not an approval, but for tracking for safety and identification---so I was told by the Nebraska attorney general a few years ago."

Reply - Again, read the FMVSS, it lays out in excruciatingly painfull detail all sorts of seemingly trivial standards. If it doesn't meet those standards, it's not legal.

Jeff - I've never been wrong. Ok, ONCE I was mistaken. LOL

Reply - Huh, all these years and I never knew you'd been married previously. ;)


Best of luck. ....

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