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 > Actual federal weight law rules, some questions and answers

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surveyorjp

Missouri

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hannibal wrote:

Me thinks this should become a sticky tomorrow morning, the second Tuesday. The question is valid and the answer is on the first page. As in all aspects of life, the facts are clouded in myth, hearsay and opinion but, the facts are still facts.


Completely off topic, did you change your name? That rig in your sig looks awfully familiar.[emoticon]

Back on topic, thanks to wadcutter for a look at the REAL answers about weight ratings and the law.


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jmramiller

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:19am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks wadcutter. When I did my original search I was probably too narrow in my wording. Great information. Hopefully those who have been posting incorrect information on this forum are reading this thread.


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blt2ski

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Needs Sleep,

If you have looked at the wts and measures vans that are used to enforce weights, they are IIRC WSP DOT wts and measures officers or some such verbage. Most commercial drivers I know refer to theses officers as DOT officers. It may be incorrect, but..........that is how they are known!

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chadsalt

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Agree this needs to be a sticky, that way when the "weight police" start up about GVWR we would just link them to it. There will always be some discussion as to whether axle limits are legal, in SC the diesel cop Ive spoken with said he could write a ticket for being over on the axle limits, specifically the tire limits (not the manufacturer label). Whether that would hold up in court I dont know........or care. I havent seen anyone arguing whether or not its alright to overload their tires. He also said "they" are only interested in commercial traffic.





JIMNLIN

Oklahoma

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ok we've heard from a state dot officer [IL] on IL requirements, now lets look at info from experienced dot hauler for operating multistate. one is a MR.tom cobb who is a experienced dot hauler that uses the same size trucks we use. He says ; there are three weights;
your scale weight [GCWR] which is what your truck, gear,fuel, and empty trailer weighs
your rated weight [GCVWR] which is your data plate lists as your ratings, what your axles are rated for, what your tires/wheels are rated for...and dot loves to look at all of this
your "tagged" weight which is what you have declared your ratings to be for tagging.
For DOT you need;
1. to not be over your data plate combined weights
2. not be over your tire rating weights
3. not be over your axle ratings
4. not weigh more than you are tagged for
See his recomendations for new folks on hotshothauling.com under general topics that was posted to help folks get started in the business.
Now, I have hauled commercial in a 12 state area around OK some years back. Our newer trucks have a door plate with the axle ratings and GVWR [GVWR may be uprated in your state so it goes from state to state requirements]. Some states may have a mixed reg requirements for weights on interstate vs intrastate roads even within their own state.
Some states, as my state, use those weight regs for the same trucks for non commercial use.
Check with your state dot office and DPS office for your states requirements. Its a mixed bag now but many commercial hauler are hearing rumblings from their states and dot offices that changes are comming for non commercial users. Its about time.
JIM


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pupeperson

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Posted: 11/12/07 10:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well said Wadcutter. Nice to hear from someone with the bonafides to qualify as an expert on this subject telling it like it is. I wish you'd add to your comments the fact that equipment on our rigs that actually carry a DOT rating, like the tires and wheels, should not be loaded beyond those limits which actually are enforceable.

This is a safety issue that's real, and we don't want people thinking they can grossly overload those items with impunity because they haven't reached the commercial axle ratings.

travelnutz

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Posted: 11/12/07 11:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks Wadcutter for putting the real facts in plain English. Too bad so many RV'ers can't seem to understand English. The weight police appear to have many readers and members brainwashed and/or confused.

The weakest component capability on your tow vehicle determines your actual weight carrying capacity. Be it tires, wheels (rims), suspension, frame, engine/drive line capability, axles, etc. You'd be hard pressed to ever violate federal weight laws with a modern stock (OEM) built 2500HD (3/4 ton) or 3500 (one ton SRW or DRW) pickup truck pulling any normal production RV trailer or hauling any production TC sensibly loaded to MFG'ers GVWR. Yes, an idiot could load an ADDITIONAL 10,000+ lbs of lead in his pickup box to prove he is just that, an idiot! I trust RV'ers are much smarter than that. An owner of said pickup truck must go by the weight etc laws of registration, if specified, in the state he has registered his vehicle in.

jmramiller, You have it correct as to the production AAM rear axle used on the GM 2500HD. 3500 SRW, and the 3500 DRW pickups. They are all the same exact size/strength with the only difference being corresponding alterations to the axle ends to allow needed wheel attachment configurations (single or dual wheels). AAM rear axle strength rating as tested and certified is 10,800 lbs, GM lists it as 6,084 to 9,000 depending on which truck configuration it is placed in or the model year in question. The weight capacities GM lists HAVE to do with the lowest weight rating capacity of the limiting component. 6084 lb axle capacity from GM is for the 245/75/16 E rated tires on the 2500 HD OEM pickups. The axle it's self is still 10,800 lbs capacity. The actual rear axle OEM component capacity doesn't even figure into these GM pickup trucks which are listed in this post as it's capability is far beyond the vehicle MFG'ers highest rated rear capacities. The other 2 manufacturers follow similar practices.

The edit is to correct the typo error of 6480 to the correct number of 6084. That is 3042 times 2 for the 245/75/16 "E" tire OEM tire capacity.

* This post was edited 04/24/08 06:24pm by travelnutz *


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planetdell

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Posted: 11/12/07 12:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

adamrmathis wrote:

Two things...

First... What would a LEO know about the law? LEO's only enforce it and they are subect to the same errors the rest of us are. Our lawyers and judges can't even decide on what is right or wrong, and now you want an opinion from a LEO? I'm no trying to bash any LEO's, just tring to point out that being a LEO doesn't make one correct.

Second... I have a dodge truck and the RAWR on the door jamb sticker is far less than what the actual manufacturer specifies to to be - In this situation, who is the manufacturer, Dodge or AAM, and whose specification is right or most correct?


LEO's don't know the law, they only enforce it. Hmmm

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Wadcutter

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Posted: 11/12/07 12:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JIMNLIN wrote:

ok we've heard from a state dot officer [IL] on IL requirements,

I'm not and never was a "state dot officer". DOT is a completely different agency than the state police. DOT does not enforce weight laws, they do not do motor carrier inspections, nor do they have LE authority.
Truckers use DOT interchangeably with state police. 2 different agencies.

JIMNLIN wrote:


your rated weight [GCVWR] which is your data plate lists as your ratings, what your axles are rated for, what your tires/wheels are rated for...and dot loves to look at all of this
your "tagged" weight which is what you have declared your ratings to be for tagging.

Don't confuse registered weight with axle and gross weights. 2 competely separate things and one is not related to the other. The only thing in common between the 2 is the word "weight" but neither law is related to the other. It's confusing for those not familar with the law. When they hear/read the word "weight" they don't understand the difference between registered weight limits and axle/gross weight limits. The OP was inquirying about axle/gross limits.
I've explained registered weights ad nauseum in the past too. Registered weight limits are really nothing more than a tax. In fact if you look at your state statute for registration fees it's likely that particular statute is titled something like "registration tax fees". You pay a certain amount of tax, ie registration fee, to haul a certain amount of weight. For example, if you want to haul 8000 lbs in your pickup then you pay the tax (registration fee) for 8000 lbs. But if you then haul 11,000 lbs in your pickup you would be subject to fine for overweight on registration, ie, didn't pay enough tax to haul 11,000. We use to do force registration in IL where if someone as described in the example was stopped then we could force the driver to purchase higher registration plates right there before he was allowed to move further. The increased registration cost was in addition to the fine. Now we just write the citation and if there's a record of additional such violations, particularly if company owned, then inspections can be done on the company and force increased registration.

pupeperson wrote:

I wish you'd add to your comments the fact that equipment on our rigs that actually carry a DOT rating, like the tires and wheels, should not be loaded beyond those limits which actually are enforceable.

I didn't want to get into discussing motor carrier safety laws since they don't apply to the RVer. Commercial drivers should have received the MCS training. For a Troop to be certified to do MCS inspections is a 3 week class and involves a couple of very detailed tests. Weight laws aren't covered in that 3 weeks of MCS training as weight laws is a completely separate course that all Troops get in the academy. As a driver you know how extensive the MCS stuff gets. From front bumper to rear bumper and literally everything in between, including the driver and any passengers. When I was doing the full inspections it usually took about 45 minutes to do a complete inspection and that was if there wasn't any problems. I have done inspections where it took the entire shift to do the inspection on just 1 rig. If I were the drivers in those rigs I wouldn't have ever left the yard. Most of the time the drivers of those rigs were happy to help as they knew there were problems and had reported them but they were told to drive anyway or the company would get another driver. Find those kinds of things and the company gets a visit.

* This post was edited 11/12/07 12:41pm by Wadcutter *


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EPenney

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Posted: 11/12/07 02:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If I understand all the above correctly:

Exceeding GVRW by, lets say, 30# is not a violation.
Exceeding GAWR by 30# is a violation.
Exceeding GCVWR by 30# is a violation.

Or does the above depend on the state the vehicle is registered in.


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