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Hates: Liver. Loves: Diesel
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Discussion Starter #1
I recently accepted a free 78 Chevy Step Van from a friend's Uncle. He had checked with DMV and they said that it was no longer in the computer, meaning it no longer had any record or history in the DMV computer. So, I took it home, threw some parts at it and now its ready for the road. I went to register it and it in fact still IS in the computer. Its my fault for not checking.

For those of you who don't know, California requires you to continue paying registration on a vehicle regardless of whether or not its on the road. You can do a planned non-operational registration which is cheaper, but they charge you all your back registration (up to three years) plus penalties if you want to re-register it.

So, for my free rustbucket truck, I have to pay $1900 to get it re-registered. Even if I was somehow able to get them to waive the penalties, its still $900 which is still more than what this heap is worth.

I have one more idea... If I could register it in another state, then bring it back, it has no history here. Problem is, I don't have a driver's license in the only other state that I live, Pennsylvania.

Do you folks know of any state where I can register it? I already submitted the title once, so it already has my name and signature on it. Otherwise I would send it to my parents in PA and have them do it.
 

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California Crazy

Living in California can drive ya nuts,when I lived in Sacramento I traded a Datsun coupe to a wrecking yard for a 64 malibu,so I stuffed a 600 HP small block in it and went to title it as a racecar,they told me because it had a salvage title it would have to pass a safety and smog inspection before I could get a title(Yeh, like it would pass smog!)So I ended up pulling the motor putting it in a 54 truck and selling the Malibu.Thank God,I now live in Arizona!!
 

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Hates: Liver. Loves: Diesel
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5,659 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Richard, thanks for the help, but they're in Carlisle which is a couple hours away... Four hours for them :)

This is the first problem I've really had in California, and I have some weird cars. PA is the worst Nazi state I know of for registration. Yearly safety inspections are NUTS. I failed one once because I had a chip on the side of my aftermarket foglight lens. I had to buy a new lens before it would pass.

I thought it was funny; I have a heavily modified 66 Bonneville and I used spherical rod ends to solve a bump steer issue. Absolute no-no. Even my FREIND who runs an inspection shop wouldn't do it. So what did I do to prove a point? I took the cast iron spindle, hacked the steering arm off, and welded on a new steering arm in the right spot with a stick welder from 1965. It passed with flying colors. Now which one do you really think was safer ? :)

California doesn't give a rat's ***** what you put on the road, as long as it doesn't put smog in the atmosphere. There is some scary stuff around L.A.
 

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This California registration is baffling and frustrating but I've found that problems are different from teller to teller. When I purchased my Dodge Dart it hadn't been registered in a couple years. I was afraid of the fees and all those missed years. But the lady said that when I registered it under mom and my name that since we are the new owners we don't get those penalties. She was right. I just had to pay the $36 current year and the title $15, so it all came out to be less than $100
 

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When I lived in Illinois for a few years, I got plates for my daily driver no problem. I still had an Ohio driver's license too :thumbup:
 

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Save a horse, Ride a Cowboy.
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I know people who have purchased and registered cars and they don't even have drivers' licenses, period. ...... But this is Arkansas...... LOL

State just wants MONEY. If you will give it, you can get your wishes granted.
 

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I think a lot of states are like that. You can buy a car which doesn't require a license, you just have to have a license to drive it. I guess it's how those 14 year old rappers can buy luxury cars.
 
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