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Author Topic: When do you need a CDL  (Read 13079 times)
coachconverter
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« on: August 13, 2008, 07:00:26 PM »

I know, I know, this has been beat to death.  But does anyone know of a Federal website that outlines when you have to have a CDL?

Oviously, I've been to lazy to get mine, or I wouldn't ask.  But need to drive a bus from NJ to OH which has a GVW of 21,260lbs.  It has air brakes and suspension and is titled as a bus, was a limo bus.

Thanks for any links to a website that I can print out and take with me as proof of ignorance of the law!
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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2008, 07:05:22 PM »

I'm available for hire.

This wouldn;t be the F3500 that I was eyeballing?
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« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2008, 07:06:35 PM »

Yup!

Registered as a commercial vehicle, you need a CDL in any state.

Good Luck
Nick-
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« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2008, 07:26:20 PM »

I cannot send you to a Fed site, but all states have similar CDL requirements. 
Here's a link to where I just copied the below statements.
 http://www.dmv.org/nc-north-carolina/cdl-faqs.php
The CDL issue is simple really.   If you are not exempted (see list below), you gotta have a CDL.  All commercially licensed bus and school bus operators require a CDL with a pax endorsement.     
If the bus you're moving is licensed as a commercial vehicle, you're required to have a CDL.
Since buses don't stop in weigh stations, you'll probably be able to skate thru the interstate system without detection...but, if you get stopped for whatever reason, they'll park you until an operator shows up with a bus CDL.   
I got stopped once by NCDOT because I didn't have the name of my bus company on the rear of the bus.   Once they got a look inside, no problem.  But I wasn't doing anything to get their attention.  This was when bringing my bus back from Carolina Bus after having caps installed on both ends.   They thought a busload of illegals was slipping by...?   Roll Eyes


Coped from NC CDL FAQs.

Certain vehicles do not require you to have a CDL in order to drive them. However, you may still need a non-CDL, Class A or B license. These exempt vehicles include:

*Recreational vehicles and others used for personal use
*Vehicles owned or operated by the Department of Defense when they are driven by active *military personnel on duty
*Firefighting or emergency equipment used during emergencies
*Certain farm vehicles

Until you get better info!  JR

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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2008, 07:58:19 PM »

Real buses do have to stop at the scales in certain places, if signed.

And in Maryland, for one.

Hire one of your busnut friends with a CDL to go fetch it.

Don't forget the log book, pre/post trip forms, the various operating authorities for the jurisdictions operating through and the fuel tax IFTA people.

happy coaching!
buswarrior

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« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2008, 08:23:29 PM »

Yep, here in the midwest, if the scale sign only says "trucks" we don't pull in. But if it says "com veh" or "buses" we do.
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« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2008, 08:54:39 PM »

How about if i purchase a bus that was registered as a bus, and am transporting it home to convert it to a private motorcoach?

Also, pertaining that....just like when you purchase a new car you have 10-14 days depending on the state to register and insure it....does this apply to when a bus is purchased as well?

also, do you guys know the GVW of an mc9 with all the seats still in?
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« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2008, 08:57:12 PM »

legally, as long it is a bus it can't be registered as a motorhome.

Legally, until you get it home and get it registered it remains a bus.

now what you can get away with is different, and also subject to the mood and savey of the LEO that pulls you over
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« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2008, 09:08:49 PM »

CDL & a current log book! I know from experience ! I was driving one of MAK's bus from TX to CA for him, and got stopped. I got a ticket for no log book. Even though I told the officer I didn't need a CDL or log book was because I was taking it out to CA to be turned into a Motor Home. His reply was it's got seats, it's a bus, and yes if you didn't have one I'd shut this bus down right here until Somebody had 1!
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« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2008, 09:38:07 PM »

In my retirement, I will set up shop to rent myself out to fix these little administrative problems.

Right now, a busnut can't afford me!

Busnut Drive-Away
the plates, insurance and licencing you need

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2008, 02:08:51 AM »

How many folks does it seat including the driver CoachConverter?
That will have a bearing on the CDL issue. 

Jack
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« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2008, 04:59:58 AM »

When transporting a commercial vehicle with temporary, cardboard tags, can it be used as a commercial vehicle?  BK, can you charter a bus that has a cardboard tag?

Also, can you have the seller remove most of the seats so it will seat less than 16 people?

Art
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Art & Cheryll Gill
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« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2008, 06:12:41 AM »

When transporting a commercial vehicle with temporary, cardboard tags, can it be used as a commercial vehicle?  BK, can you charter a bus that has a cardboard tag?

Also, can you have the seller remove most of the seats so it will seat less than 16 people?

Art

Yes we have and do use the temp tags up until they expire on our charter buses! Even went thru a DOT inspection once because of it. (they said it wasn't the reason, but I know better! Out of literally hundreds of buses at Universal that day, mine was the only inspected? Not only did our driver notice it, but several other local drivers I know down there made a point of mentioning it to him, or calling me direct about it!)

Also I had a CA temp slip Mike had sent me on the bus I was ticketed in for no log book down in TX! Nothing was said at all about the tag, just the leaking axle seal, some lights out, smoking, leaning & my log book.

Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
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« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2008, 06:14:44 AM »

By the way isn't Dallas still near by? He still has a CDL. Just a thought! FWIW Grin  BK  Grin

Also as Doug said I have drivers for hire also.
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
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« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2008, 06:35:22 AM »

By the way isn't Dallas still near by? He still has a CDL. Just a thought! FWIW Grin  BK  Grin

Also as Doug said I have drivers for hire also.

Yup, CDL, but without the "P" endorsement, which I refuse to do! Lol.
The only loads I like to haul that can talk back are the ones that go Mooo000OOOOooo.

(They can't sue you when you hit them with a cattle prod!)  Wink

Dallas
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NJT5047
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« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2008, 06:43:38 AM »

How about if i purchase a bus that was registered as a bus, and am transporting it home to convert it to a private motorcoach?

Also, pertaining that....just like when you purchase a new car you have 10-14 days depending on the state to register and insure it....does this apply to when a bus is purchased as well?

also, do you guys know the GVW of an mc9 with all the seats still in?


Driving a bus home that's going to be converted is usually not contested.  As long as all signage, permit numbers, etc are painted over.  Removing the seats is best.   Still, as long as you have non-commercial insurance, and a don't have a load of people on the bus...your should be OK.  
Have the seller to write on the bill of sale..."Motorhome Shell"...don't ride friends with you, and don't mention 'Band Bus.'  The cop's notion of intent is what counts. 
You'll need liability insurance in order to get a temp tag.
Bryce pointed out something that is important...make sure the tires are inflated, the lights all work correctly, and that nothing is visible that would pick DOT's nerves.   Place an "Out of Service" sign in the front windshield.  
Using latex paint over any signage will make you more legal.  Latex is easy to wash off.
GVW of MC9 ranges between 38 and 42K.
Empty weight is about 26K.
Having a CDL won't have any negative outcomes over any other license, unless you drink.  CDL holders cannot imbibe and drive.  The (varies by state) common ~< 0.08 ETOH will get you a DUI on a CDL.  
JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
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« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2008, 08:35:20 AM »

Thanks Guys,

It's going to Luke's place until I get my CDL, hopefully wont take too long, the written part wasn't too bad.  Plus I'll have him give it the "twice over" while there.

Todd
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« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2008, 02:56:49 PM »

Could each state have different requirements?  Up here in Oregon, if the bus is a motorhome, then it is the same as a private vehicle.  A basic drivers license is needed, but not a CDL, which is good.

I think some states require something called a "non-commercial CDL" whatever that could be.  Sounds like an oxi-moron or something like that.  Anyway, your state's requirements may differ.  Good luck.  Smiley Smiley Smiley
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« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2008, 03:24:30 PM »

Could each state have different requirements?  Up here in Oregon, if the bus is a motorhome, then it is the same as a private vehicle.  A basic drivers license is needed, but not a CDL, which is good.

I think some states require something called a "non-commercial CDL" whatever that could be.  Sounds like an oxi-moron or something like that.  Anyway, your state's requirements may differ.  Good luck.  Smiley Smiley Smiley

Some states do require special classes of license for vehicles over a certain size even if they are motorhomes and require knowledge/skills appropriate to the vehicle that is to be driven.  But a CDL is only required for commercial drivers and as I understand it is dictated by federal govt. specifications.
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« Reply #19 on: August 14, 2008, 03:37:30 PM »

    For RVs (any size or type), all Florida requires is a standard (class C) driver's license. But, to drive a dually pick-up you need a class D (any vehicle over 80" wide {except RVs}), although they do not seem to enforce this. 
    I have heard that Texas requires "non-CDL" for any RV over 26,001 lbs and an air brake endorsement if so equipped. Jack
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« Reply #20 on: August 14, 2008, 03:40:03 PM »

CC:

The commercial vehicle regs are administered by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration(FMCSA). Check out this link for a description of CDL requirements:

http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/registration-licensing/cdl/cdl.htm

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« Reply #21 on: August 14, 2008, 03:47:49 PM »

I'm over 40 feet (41 feet) so I need a non-commercial Class B license to drive the bus.  I was told that in california, that if it was 40 ft, no matter the wieght, or with air brakes, that all I need is the class C.  Reading the regs however, they say that anything over 26,000 lbs need one too. 

When I went in for the license, the DMV tried to talk me out of it, saying its only 1 foot.  When I said I needed their name to give to the highway patrol shouild they ever stop me, they "caved in" and gave me the test.
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« Reply #22 on: August 14, 2008, 04:26:16 PM »

When I went in for the license, the DMV tried to talk me out of it, saying its only 1 foot.  When I said I needed their name to give to the highway patrol shouild they ever stop me, they "caved in" and gave me the test.

I never worry about the county mounty - they're often fools with less grasp of the law than I have.  What I worry about is insurance company lawyers.  I want to be 100% sure I'm in compliance with every boneheaded law in case something ever happens because I don't want the insurance company to have any chance of weaseling out.

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« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2008, 04:46:45 PM »

http://changingears.com/rv-sec-state-rv-license.shtml
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« Reply #24 on: August 14, 2008, 06:54:46 PM »

FWIW, states have different rules for license requirements for non-commercial vehicles. 
However, all states offer reciprocity, so you won't get nailed for various rules as long as you are correctly licensed in your home state. 
A commercial CDL is a issued by states, but under federal mandate.  The feds keep track of CDL records.  This was the purpose of moving from "Class A" licenses to a "CDL" format.  Drivers were holding Class A's in multiple states.   Lose a license...no problem... Wink
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
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"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.

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« Reply #25 on: August 14, 2008, 07:09:18 PM »

JR, I am old enough to remember when you could buy commercial drivers license at weight stations in some states with no test at 1 time I had 5 sets.   
I have some from Norway that are good till 2047 and I am not going to tell you how old I will be when they expire
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« Reply #26 on: August 14, 2008, 09:05:25 PM »

JR, I am old enough to remember when you could buy commercial drivers license at weight stations in some states with no test at 1 time I had 5 sets.  
I have some from Norway that are good till 2047 and I am not going to tell you how old I will be when they expire

Norway?  Bet that would get some attention at a weight station. 
Yeah...a class A was easy to get (or buy?).  I kept a class A license so that we could rent tractors (Pepsico short lease was much cheaper than buying) to haul big boats with.   The only issue was that my left eye is blind.  That's a no-no.  Gotta have binocular vision to drive across the state line.  Wrong.
Resolution...fake my way thru a DOT physical...which I did year after year. 
Odd thing these rules.  I worked for years as a paramedic.  Drove all sorts of emergency vehicles.  No problem.  But couldn't keep my "A" after the CDL program was started.  NC DOT does the eye exam themselves...they still require a DOT physical, but the state does their own eye exam.   That sucked.   I think that the ADA should intervene!  I'm being discriminated against!   Wink
Whatever. 
Is that your bus in the little avatar picture?  Isn't that an "E"?  You must be rich!  Grin  Nice bus!  Bus envy is hell.   Sad
BTW, have you noticed that you'll be a 'minority' in 2047?  Yep.  I'll be a 'below ground' minority in 2047.  Lessee, 63 plus ....??  Whoa...I'll be almost....80...?  Wink Huh Roll Eyes

JR

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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.

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« Reply #27 on: August 14, 2008, 09:48:21 PM »

dumb question....but if you havent been able to tell...im looking to bend the rules as much as possible.


so....if the seats arent removed, but unattached, and i just throw them all towards the back so that you can clearly see that the seats....well....theyre not technically "in".....how well would that fly?
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« Reply #28 on: August 15, 2008, 04:26:07 AM »

JR, I am old enough to remember when you could buy commercial drivers license at weight stations in some states with no test at 1 time I had 5 sets.  
I have some from Norway that are good till 2047 and I am not going to tell you how old I will be when they expire

Norway?  Bet that would get some attention at a weight station. 
Yeah...a class A was easy to get (or buy?).  I kept a class A license so that we could rent tractors (Pepsico short lease was much cheaper than buying) to haul big boats with.   The only issue was that my left eye is blind.  That's a no-no.  Gotta have binocular vision to drive across the state line.  Wrong.
Resolution...fake my way thru a DOT physical...which I did year after year. 
Odd thing these rules.  I worked for years as a paramedic.  Drove all sorts of emergency vehicles.  No problem.  But couldn't keep my "A" after the CDL program was started.  NC DOT does the eye exam themselves...they still require a DOT physical, but the state does their own eye exam.   That sucked.   I think that the ADA should intervene!  I'm being discriminated against!   Wink
Whatever. 
Is that your bus in the little avatar picture?  Isn't that an "E"?  You must be rich!  Grin  Nice bus!  Bus envy is hell.   Sad
BTW, have you noticed that you'll be a 'minority' in 2047?  Yep.  I'll be a 'below ground' minority in 2047.  Lessee, 63 plus ....??  Whoa...I'll be almost....80...?  Wink Huh Roll Eyes

JR

JR,
They have exemption forms you can get and have one of there Drs. and 1 of your to sign off on showing that even with your handy cap, that are fully capable of driving "whatever" it is your getting the CDL for.
I personally know of 3 people operating on exemptions from 3 different states! One from KY has NO right eye! One from TN has no right arm below the elbow! (and he drives a "twin stick"). And the 3rd is from OK and has no left foot! FWIW! BK
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« Reply #29 on: August 15, 2008, 05:07:53 AM »

iminaccess,

If you unbolt all your seats, the only thing that will fly is the seats.  They'll fly right through the windshield the first time you get cut off and have to make a panic stop.

-- Seaton
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« Reply #30 on: August 15, 2008, 07:39:36 AM »

iominaccess,

When I picked up my coach from New Jersey and drove it back to Cal, I hired a driver with a CDL to help me, and so I could learn from him.  While he was driving, I unbolted some of the seats.  I left some in, so in the case of an emergency stop, the bolted ones would catch the fliers.  Had no problems, did not get pulled over to check licenses, althnough we blew through all the weigh stations, and there were no panic stops.  When I got home, I was able to sell 46 of the 50 seats (I kept the other 4 for my dinette).
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« Reply #31 on: August 15, 2008, 08:38:41 AM »

dumb question....but if you havent been able to tell...im looking to bend the rules as much as possible.


so....if the seats arent removed, but unattached, and i just throw them all towards the back so that you can clearly see that the seats....well....theyre not technically "in".....how well would that fly?

Reckon how many seats will fit into the bays?   I'll agree with Charles that they would be a hazard when 'stored' behind you.  You may be able to just dump all but a couple of them at the sellers location?   Unless they are special, MC9 seats have almost no value.   May wish to save a few for your band members.  Lose the rest.   The seats will swap from side-to-side and face rearward for a dinette or such.   Form an idea of your desired floorplan so that you keep enough seats for your use.
Most of all, drive safely.  Don't get involved in anything and don't bump anyone.  And avoid weigh stations....you are not a  'commercial' operator, so you don't have to drive thru weigh stations.   As long as all signage is painted over, and you are insured with RV insurance, and the title work indicates private ownership, no problem.   
As long as you're not operating on commercial insurance, you are not likely to have issues no matter whether the seats are mounted or otherwise. 
If you get stopped, always infer that the coach is being converted into a motorhome.   Don't say it's going to be a 'band bus'...that's commercial.
This is my 'opinion'.  This is not legal advice.  Your results may vary!  Wink
JR

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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

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« Reply #32 on: August 15, 2008, 08:52:44 AM »

Thank you guys a ton for your help!  Good idea about the dinette!
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« Reply #33 on: August 15, 2008, 10:22:52 AM »

Thank you guys a ton for your help!  Good idea about the dinette!

Peach also remember I'm an hour and a half away, and if needed I could meet you there and drive it back to my shop. Also if ya need to I can "loose" as many seats as you need. (as Jr mentioned!) I also would be available to deliver it wherever needed. This is our "slow' time of year. Where with the exception of possibly packing up and heading toward hurricane relief zones, we are just about doing nothing!
Grin  BK  Grin
Bryce @ 731.885.7460
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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« Reply #34 on: August 15, 2008, 12:14:23 PM »

Peach,

When I purchased my bus, BK drove it back to his place and kept it for me till I was able to take it home.  And except for the fish in the air vent he took real good care of it. Smiley 

You have received a lot of good advice and offers for help, be smart and use it.

Frank
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The MCI has landed..... We are home.
Dale City Va.  Just a southern suburb of DC
Yes I am a BUSNUT
1976 MCI MC8
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« Reply #35 on: August 15, 2008, 02:00:11 PM »

Peach,

When I purchased my bus, BK drove it back to his place and kept it for me till I was able to take it home.  And except for the fish in the air vent he took real good care of it. Smiley 
You have received a lot of good advice and offers for help, be smart and use it.

Frank

Now Frank,
If ya gonna tell "fish stories" ya need to go on and tell the whole story! I told ya not to give Dallas permission to teach CAT how to drive in your bus! And I also warned you when she came off the road onto the driveway on the right side wheels only. Screaming "Whooohooo, try and catch me now BO, LUKE or even Roscoe P. Coltrane!" That she'd been watching too many "Dukes of Hazard" reruns, and I was "frankly" (sorry about the pun! LOL!) getting concerned. Then I tried to warn you that she kept walking down to the pond, and pacing off the length of the levee, then pacing the hill on the back side too! I warned YOU! REMEMBER!?? I told you there was something "awful fishy going on awound here!" Remember? Huh do ya? Yup but on the other hand you shoulda seen her hit that levee wide open flat out, with a bottle of propane opened and stuffed in the air filter! Wow even Uncle Jesse woulda been proud! And on top of that she made it almost all the way before it splashed down! Now Dallas and I worked as hard and fast as we could to pull it out ASAP. But "Ol' smokey" is only built for towing and pulling cars not buses! Ain't our fault it took us 4 days to get it out of the pond!
I'm surprised the fish that CAT missed in the air vent was the only one! And on top of that she did manage to get all the water moccasins out of it! Don't ask me how, 'cause I didn't take no part in the snake charmin'!

Now on the other hand when Malcom decided to turn his Firebird into a submarine, "Ol' smokey" pulled it right out! Matter of fact he was driving it 3 days later! And you can't even tell it was completely under water! (yer bus never got deep enough to cover the windows!)

OK folks there ya have it, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, uh or at least the rest of the story!

Grin  BK  Grin
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Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
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« Reply #36 on: August 15, 2008, 02:26:09 PM »

Wow, Bryce, that's the first time I ever saw you take a long story and make it short.  LOL

If you are gonna tell this story you need to insert all the facts.  Dallas did not teach me to drive. He felt it wouldn't work since we are married.  You were the one that he had show me the ropes.  You and your dad built the ramp for me to use to try to jump the pond out of lumber Cody gave you.  Then, you guys all added a bridge so that we could walk from the shore to the bus to get a better chance at getting those big fish in the middle of the pond.  You even used an entire gallon of pink paint that Cody offered to paint that bridge.  It was YOU that dared me to make that jump and YOU that took the video of me in mid air.  So, good buddy, you gotta admit your part in the "fishy" tale. Grin
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