(Other) Lessons Learned - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 08-18-2006, 11:02 PM   #15
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Trailer: 1975 13 ft Trillium
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IMHO, Pete is right, codes vary country to country, state to state and province to province. I have a friend working in the Dept of transport here in B.C and he tells me that VERY soon towing with a bumper hitch is going to be illegal.

From what I've been also told that IF you are "legal" in the area you live in, you "SHOULD be" legal almost anywhere you go as long as you are not permanently living there. Having said that I'd guess it'd be up to you to convince a law enforcement officer OR Transport official that you are, in fact, legal at "home".

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Old 08-18-2006, 11:20 PM   #16
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Ask him to define bumper hitch -- The hitch that was on the bumper of my Ranger pickup was quite solid and had a rating of 2-3,000 lbs (I don't remember which), but I took the ball off and installed a bolt-on receiver hitch for added strength -- In fact, the after-market step bumper I had on my D150 pickup was rated stronger than the truck itself was rated (some folks read the bumper rating on vehicles and think it applies to the entire vehicle, which it most definitely does not).

The question of reciprocity between states/provinces starts to get murky when one gets into some arcane details of towing laws -- There have been (and maybe still are) states which don't require license plates on small trailers like boat and utility (Alabama was one), but that might be hard to explain to a trooper in Utah... If some practice is deemed unsafe for residents, does it suddenly become safe for folks just passing thru?

There's surely no reciprocity when it comes to radar detectors and the places that ban them!

I believe a couple of years ago, one of the provinces (Ontario?) started enforcing new laws regarding towing of vehicles behind Bulgemobiles and a requirement for brakes on out-of-province/country tourists -- I believe they had to back off, but more places are now requiring brakes on the toads.

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Old 08-20-2006, 10:30 AM   #17
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Trailer: 19' Escape
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I just went to the website for the New Jersey Commission of motor vehicles looking for specific state rules governing towing. Not much there. Nothing found on chains. Code 22 covers trailers but when you look it up get fee schedules and weight designations, not a list of no-no's.

Something there I already have experience with: To register a homemade trailer....

<blockquote>"...you need to visit an MVC Agency with acceptable proof of identification to complete an application ...and as part of the inspection process, you will need to provide receipts for all parts used to build the trailer or a notarized statement and a certified weight slip if receipts cannot be provided."</blockquote>
Since earlier Burros were also sold as kits to be assembled at home (mine was one of those) and since mine, at least, never had a VIN stamped on its tongue, this knowledge is certainly useful for us who need to know it.

Even though you are a NJ driver, you can still acquire points and penalties for violations committed in other states. NJ is a member of two compacts that enforce this policy. The Compact consists of 45 states and the District of Columbia. States not included are Georgia, Massachusetts, Michigan, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. Members of this compact exchange all violation information. For example, if you get a speeding ticket in Florida, you will get 2 points on your NJ driving record.
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Old 08-20-2006, 10:41 AM   #18
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Trailer: Y2K6 Born Free 32RQ on the Kodiak chassis, 1995 Coachmen 19' B-van and 1996 Precision 21' Sailboat
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They were never sold as do-it-yourself-from-the-frame-up kits. They sold them as competed, towable, weather-tight shells on completed frames with a manufacturer's certificate of origin (or title). The only thing that the do-it-yourselfer completed was the interior, and Burro sold the complete interior as a kit with the do-it-yourself trailer.

I know from experience that Burro VIN numbers are notoriously difficult to see as they were very lightly stamped on the tongue, and typically years of rust and/or paint can make them all but invisible. But, so far as I know, there were never any produced without VIN numbers.

It's unfortunate that yours may have become invisible. It certainly makes life more difficult.

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Old 08-20-2006, 03:23 PM   #19
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Trailer: 19' Escape
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Wonder if Chuck T is still around? He's the salesman who sold my burro "kit" to the guy I bought it from. As you can see from the invoice here he uses the word "group" to indicate what was included in the deal. As in...No "Groups", Electrical "Groups," etc. Yet, on another document from Burro which I found in the trailer you see clearly the words, "Burro Kit, Complete with 4 Groups".

So! It is obvious degrees of kit-osity are subject to much variation. Dare I say one man's kit is another man's......no, I won't say that.

There is a chemical I have seen detectives on tv use to reveal serial numbers that have been filed off metals by criminals. You know, some kind of acid, that exposes microscopic dents deep in the metallic little cells, that the human eye cannot see. Don't know what chemical it is. I'll need to get that stuff to be certain Burro really did stamp a VIN on my tongue because I've scoured it thoroughly with a magnifying glass and found zero trace of any stamped number. And I got a number to look for. It was on the manufacturer's statement of origin. Interestingly enough, the word KIT is not found on that document.
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Old 08-21-2006, 11:36 AM   #20
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Trailer: 2006 Scamp 13' towed with a 2005 Dodge Dakota 4.7l Magnum W/full tow package (over kill)
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Oregon doesn't allow screw links??? That's what I'm using. The RV place that inspected my trailer when I bought it replaced the S links with screw links.

I'd better check this out (and will post any valid info I find here!)

I finally did a bit of checking on this one. Oregon law does not specify how the safety chain(s) are attached. Read it here. Section 818.150
Byron & Anne enjoying the everyday Saturday thing.
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Old 08-25-2006, 08:18 AM   #21
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Washington doesn't like the "S" hooks either. They require some sort of retaining device. I don't know about crossing the safety chains.

They also want you to have a 'break-away' switch for the brakes, so if your trailer comes unhitched, the brakes will jam on.

A lot of things to worry about, if you are bent that direction.

A lot of things to not worry about, if that's your thing.
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Old 08-30-2006, 05:52 PM   #22
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Sorry! I can only state what I read about Ontario. I'm not familiar with other areas so cannot give you advice as to where you live. I replaced my "S" hooks with heavy duty stainless from TSC farm store and have had no problem with them. The mental security using them doesn't hurt either.
This is what the Ontario site says
"You must have two separate means of attachment between your vehicle and the trailer. Safety chains should be crossed under the tongue to prevent the tongue from dropping to the road should the primary hitch accidentally disconnect. It is recommended that chain hooks have latches or devices that prevent accidental disconnect.

Īt would appear that the police were overreacting.
Probably a good idea though.
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Old 08-31-2006, 12:57 PM   #23
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Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
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Margaret, that quote looks like it is from Pulling a Trailer Safely, from the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, which looks like some good information.

For anyone interested in the nitty-gritty details, the same site links to Ontario's Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1980, c. H.8. The applicable section appears to be s 80, which says nothing about the type of hook. I couldn't find anything in the Statutes and Associated Regulations - Highway Traffic Act which adds to that section.

My utility trailer needed new chains, so I bought a set with hooks that have spring catches on them. My Boler is still using what I assume are the original chains (rusty brown but solid) with an unusual (to me) configuration: the chain is passed through the attachement loop of the hitch, doubles back on itself, and connects at the desired point with a hook that looks like one of those wire puzzles (and it just as frustrating when you first use it). It is slow to use, but adjustable to any length (by choosing which link to hook back to), and seems quite secure.

1979 Boler B1700RGH, pulled by 2004 Toyota Sienna LE 2WD
Information is good. Lack of information is not so good, but misinformation is much worse. Check facts, and apply common sense liberally.
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