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wldavis

Old cars on the road

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This is a tangent post from "DeSoto Frank's"<BR>post "Why did I see these cars today?"<P>We have some major problems here in Alabama,<BR>it seems. I brought a 1951 Plymouth here<BR>from another state. When I went to get a <BR>plate for it (I wanted to get an old car<BR>plate for it, although it is not very old.<BR>The one the state issues is called a<BR>"Vintage Vehicle" plate), the lady at the<BR>county courthouse asked me if I was "going<BR>to drive the car". Well, DUH!!! She told<BR>me that I could purchase a Vintage Vehicle<BR>plate only if I trailered it to a parade or<BR>to show it. (My car is "a driver", not a <BR>show car).<P>I went to the state web site and the law<BR>states that if you purchase a Vintage<BR>Vehicle plate you may only drive the car: <BR>1) to and from a shop for maintenance or<BR>repair or<BR>2) in a parade, to a show (to show it) or<BR>in a club activity.<P>I realize the state is trying to keep those<BR>not interested in old cars from purchasing<BR>old car plates for "junkers" that they would<BR>drive everyday, but I can't even "load up"<BR>the family on a pretty Saturday afternoon &<BR>go out to the lake for a picnic lunch? What<BR>the crap???<P>This limited use seems a bit extreme to me.<BR>What do you think?<P>-Bill

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Generally if the state charges less for a type of plate (or requires fewer or no inspections) then they will put restrictions on how the vehicle is use. No free lunch here.<P>In California if you want a vintage or antique tag you have a reduced fee and similar restrictions. If you want a Year of Manufacture (YOM) plate here you find that it is treated the same as vanity plates: You pay regular car registration and then another fee for the YOM. As a result they place no restrictions on driving a car with YOM plates.<P>So the rule holds: If you get a break on registration you get restrictions on driving. If you pay full fare, you get no restrictions.

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Bill, we have the same restrictions here in R.I., but knowbody inforces them. As a matter of fact, when a law officer sees you in an old car they look with interest. And as far as the people working at the registries, most don't know anything about old cars........

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In Maryland you can register "Historic Vehicle" plates annually for a reduced fee and basically it is only for pleasure driving and not your main mode of transportation. For a one time $15.00 fee, we can also register YOM plates to the car. The YOM lates are mounted on the car and the historic plates go under the rear seat

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In Virginia an antique or vintage (year of manufacture) tag costs $10 and is good for life. If you have this tag you can drive to Meets, Tours, Parades, for repair, for exercise, and for pleasure up to 250 miles from home. The Meet, Tour, Parade or Repair can be 3,000 miles away, or whatever is necessary. You cannot drive it to work.<P>If you have an antique or vintage tag you are exempted from Personal Property Tax, you are exempted from State inspection.<P>I also believe you can buy a yearly sticker for a vintage tag, pay Personal Property Taxes, get the car inspected and drive it like you do your modern car. I have heard of a man who was charged Personal Property Tax for about 40 cars he owned but did not have registered. By not being registered at all, the cars did not meet the requirement of the law that exempted them IF they were registered with antique or vintage tags.<P>This is all in the antique license portion of the licensing regulations. In a separate regulation it states that no county or city can charge more for a county sticker than does the state. Most counties don't bother, but technically after you pay $10 one way or the other it is illegal for the country to charge again.

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...And I've called the State Of Virginia, the Communist State, a time or two! The neat thing about this deal in Virginia is that our own local county got greedy and tried raising the property tax rate on our old cars. This in turn ruffled enough feathers that one of our Region's (The Northern Neck Region) members along with Dynaflash8 got the "Big Ball" rolling in our House of Delegates, and then into the State Senate. Eventually a bill was passed into law that did away with all property taxes on antique cars in Virginia. It sure did help that the Senator passing the bill into law was our member's brother and the Delegate getting it through the house was from our own little Warsaw, Va. We're not taking all the credit. The Roanoke Region, along with with 19 other regions in our state worked together with us to put this law in the books. It goes to show you what a large group of like-minded enthusiasts can do when they get together against unjust laws. Of course, the County Commissioner of Revenue doesn't think highly of our little band of "Merry Men". Instead of getting that little extra tax money, she gets "0"! grin.gif" border="0 Wayne<p>[ 08-10-2002: Message edited by: R W Burgess ]

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wldavis, Your contact at the AL DMV was interpreting our law entirely too restrictive. The driving for maintenance purposes was added to preclude the totally dumb idea that the car can only be trailered or driven in shows and parades. However, if the car starts showing up in the parking lot of your work location, that's pushing the issue. A neighbor of mine is a Alabama State Trooper and he told me that they are not pushing the enforcement, at least until the people who daily drive a beat up piece of junk with a Vintage Tag screw up the system like they did with the old antique tags. The concept was to also eliminate the special tag on non-qualified replicas and street rods. It really is a law that is in our favor. smile.gif" border="0

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I have been driving in Alabama with the Vintage Tags on several of my antique vehicles. I think Ron is correct, no one will bother you if you do not abuse the priviledge of exercising your antique vehicle.<P>Generally, on a Sunday, I will drive one of my antique vehicles to church services, just to give each car some exercise. This may not be entirely legal as stated in the statutue, but I would be very surprised if anyone ever bothered to stop me for illegal use of my car.<P>Buy your Vintage Tag and use reasonable use of your car.

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Personally I've always thought the "Antique" plate looked odd on any post 1943 vehicle here in Connecticut. They look totaly out of place on the 25 year old wrecked station wagons the house painters drive on a daily basis.

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Thanks for your replies to my post.<P>1937hd45, I agree that Antique plates look<BR>out of place on vehicles built after WWII.<BR>But, it seems that cars built after "the <BR>War" and are at least, say, 30 years old<BR>need some type distinctive plate.<P>Yes, my intent is to drive the car on<BR>weekends only. And, there will be some<BR>weekends when I will not drive it at all.<BR>I would like to shoot for less than 250 miles<BR>per year.<P>Since I already told the people at the<BR>Alabama DMV that I would probably drive<BR>the car a little on some weekends, I had<BR>to purchase a regular plate. I did not<BR>mind paying an annual tax and plate fee<BR>for a "distinctive" plate.<P>For those of you who live outside the state<BR>of Alabama, there is no annual auto<BR>inspection here.<P>-Bill

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Here in Pennsylvania they will not allow the use of YOM plates. As I understand it many law enforcement agencys feel as though we have to many plates now. They could be right as I think there are over 40 plus plates available now from Penn State collage to wildlife, two different purple hearts, etc. Seems the officers are having a hard time trying to remember them all. <P>The state of PA has thousands and thousands of antique vehicles and car shows are like going to a buffet every week. You would think we could get YOM plates? I have YOM on my cars however when I go for a drive I have to remember to attach my PA antique plate on (I use magnets) of which sometimes I forget.

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Ron, I was driving my '35 Ford home from a local cruise-in last year, when I had to have a "little talk" with the local police. Seems, I had just put a new trailer hitch on the back bumper of my car, but forgot to put the antique tag back on, even though I had it laying on the back seat. I got by with that until He went around to the front where I've never had a tag, or bracket for one for that matter. (Virginia requires two tags)Things were getting a little sticky, until I told him I lived right around the corner, and he let me go. I believe the gray area is so big in the Antique Licensing System of Virginia that the troopers ignore it for the most part. Wayne

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I live in Tennessee and have 4 vehicles with antique tags on them. They cost about $15 if I recall and are good for life. The vehicle must be 25 years old or older. I drive them all for leisure on weekends and to a local cruise. I was driving my 65 Eldorado today and a police officer gave me and my son a "thumbs up". By the way what is it with some of you who expressed your opinion that antique plates look "odd" or "out of place" on a postwar vehicle. I read this forum regularly, and comment rarely, and I often sense an attitude of disdain for postwar vehicles. Are they somehow "lesser" in your view than prewar vehicles?

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Electra Fan, When I first started in the hobby in 1961 an "Antique" car was pre 1916, a "Classic" was what the CCCA said one was. The local car show had a cutoff date of 1942 and earlier. I never developed any interest in the late model stuff except for race cars and sports cars. No big deal, the late model stuff pretty much controls the hobby, and you are free to call whatever you own whatever you want. Just like art, what appeals to some doesn't appeal to others.

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I don't think it is disdain, rather, opinion.<P>This Antique, or, Classic nonsense has been beaten to death with absolutely no resolve.<P>Here is my suggestion to avoid tying up the forum with such a boring topic:<P>--My answer, being an AACA member, as to what I consider my car: "It is an Older Model Car".<P>Really easy. It covers all cars since the late 1800's invention era.<P>--If you want a definitive answer, or argument, post this beaten subject on the CCCA forum.<P>Regards, Peter J. rolleyes.gif" border="0

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<B>"--If you want a definitive answer, or argument, post this beaten subject on the CCCA forum."</B><P>Hmmm... My friend from Arizona, now known as "Lagonda Lover" will be happy to tell you all about it.<P>Otherwise you can just visit the CCCA Web site to see what CCCA calls a "Classic." <P>Since you own the car, you are welcome to call it by any name you like you like, but others may disagree. <P>Chuck<P>Sorry Peter, the devil made me do it...<BR> grin.gif" border="0

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Two more cents:<P>When I lived in MD (pre-1989), I had "historic" plates on my '54 Chevy, '55 De Soto,& '48 Chrysler. There were the limitations "that the vehicle was primarily for shows, parades, occaisional pleasure trips, but not primarily for the transportation of goods or passengers over the road." They also required that you have a "regular tag vehicle" registered in your name, for an everyday driver.<P>Since moving to PA ( and its peculiar motor vehicle system), I have put regular tags on my running "antiques"(all are post-war); I have not gotten the same story from any two notary publics, Triple-A, or the Commonwealth's motor vehicle web-site (for that matter) about the limitations and so forth of the various (I've been told there's 2 or 3 different "old car tags" in PA)plates. I heard "daylight hours only", "Sunday only", and so on; all of which does not contribute to my wanting them on my own car, although it would probably be less expense and less hassle (no yearly inspections...).<P>My driving habits with my '41 De Soto probably fall within the "Antique" category, but if I took it into my head to drive the car across the country or back & forth to work in the summer, I wouldn't want to be "looking over my shoulder" all the time for John Law and his ticket book.<BR>I'd rather the limiting factors be between myself and the machine.<P>Now, if I owned a pre-Depression era car, I'm sure I would have a Historic plate on it; but that's a horse of a another color...<BR>(Could one even put a regular PA tag on, say a stock Model "T", with its two-wheel brakes, etc ?) <BR>If there is a succinct, straight-forward way to get the straight story on PA's antique tags & limitations, I'd like to know what it is; I might be missing out on something valuable.<P>I do agree that the Historic Tag privilege should not be abused by folks trying to skirt inspection issues by getting an antique plate on a true jalopy that wouldn't pass inspection otherwise; 'historic preservation' of a survivor car is one thing,<BR>but tricks like that do reflect well on those of us who have that tag "for the right reasons." Particularly if someone is hurt or killed in an accident with that beater car w/ the antique tag.<P>It is a bit "odd" to ponder how the definition of "antique" anything changes;I guess it's as much a perspective thing as anything else... I kind of shake my head in disbelief when I see things like Mustang IIs or Vegas on the show field at car shows...<P>Okay, someone else's turn at the soap box...

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Here in Pa you can drive it to and from shows and "occasionally for pleasure" I like to take my 75 chevy convertible to work on Fridays if the weather is nice.

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Sammi,<P>There were only two people I know in PA that were written up for abuse of antique tags. One was a guy who used his antique pickup truck to haul a picnic table to his uncle's house. (Supposedly, the bed of any antique truck must be empty for the use to be strictly "pleasure use".)<P>The other guy took his Lincoln to work! shocked.gif" border="0 There is no way the magistrate will believe that your morning commute is "pleasure use". If you get tagged pulling into the company lot it's a $500 fine (same as having no plates). It'll stick, too!

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I have YOM plates on all my antique cars. The Michigan law states that we can drive them to any show ,parade or old car function and I usually roll up 4,000 -8,000 miles a year on the old cars. Our Buick club moves the National meet all over the country, and our Driving Enthusiasts group does the same. When you add the regional meets and the McLaughlin Buick Club of Canada into the mix it is a simple thing to run a LOt of miles every year.<p>[ 08-12-2002: Message edited by: The Old Guy ]

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Dave Moon,<P>Re your friend w/ the Lincoln: THAT'S why I keep the regular plates...<P>If you've got to go to work, why can't the drive at least be pleasurable?<P>And as far as getting cited for moving a picnic table in an antique vehicle,...I wish the police in PA would spend more time arresting motorists who exceed the speed limit (often by 20 mph or more), pass on the right, tailgate, etc, all of which I see every day on I-81...but, I guess they have a mission to protect the public at large from us nefarious people who insist on using their collector vehicles for what they were built to do...

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Gawd...why are you guys so backward...dont you GO to car shows...dont you READ current-era car buff magazines..?<P>A CLASSIC is a used car you want to sell. If it happens to have a tree growing thru the floor-boards, then it is an "antique classic".<P>AND, if you happen to see a REAL classic (one of the big-engined super luxury cars from the 1930's) car on the road, dont forget, there is LAW that says you have to ask / tell the owner at LEAST one of the following. ( This is the LAW...no exceptions! )<P><BR>1) " We have one JUST like it back on the farm. Yes...same wheels and everything..." ( This type will usually go on to tell you it is a '43 Edsell pick-up with Dynaflow)<P>2) "DID YOU BUY IT NEW...?" (some day some "dip" is going to eat his uppers over this one )<P>3) "I bet it over-heats". (come race me up the "grape-vine"....or the Needless to Kingman grade )<P>4) "W had a V-17 ( or a "straight" Twelve back at the lake...put it in our boat...".(most cylinders anyone has ever bragged about to me personally about in an in line engine...is a 13...most in a V-type..is a V-19)<P>5) "yeah..that motor LOOKS big and powerful..but I hear they had dinky little<BR>cylinders ". (this twit probably knew a cook at MacDonalds who once served someone who lived in the town next to a guy whose uncle was the janitor in a Lincoln dealer, and once SAW one of those absurd Zephyr-Continenatl V-12's (a disgrace to the REAL Lincoln V-12's) made up on Ford V-8 tooling.<P>"do you ever show it"....?<BR>Why would I want to show it to anyone. I'd much rather pull down my pants and show them something that REALLY goes...".<P>BEST fight I ever got into over old car remakrs...? Was the guy who asked me...when I pulled up to a red-neck bar in Iowa, in my '36 American La France fire engine...the guy asked me.."HEY...BUDDY....WHERE'S THE FIRE...?" (after the fiftieth time..that gets old".....My answer.." BETWEEN MY LEGS....MORON....ASK YOUR WIFE..."<P><BR>Pete Hartmann

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Frank, I have PA's antique/historical vehicle tags. The only reason is the car is stored for 7 out of 12 months. The fee was $65 once and done.<P>The only time I get the police attention is rarely when they don't see an inspection sticker on the windshield.<P>My only experience with people taking advantage in the Reading area, was a guy who had a Falcon that used it for a daily driver.<P>Regards, Peter J. grin.gif" border="0

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All Right Pete! Anyone know where I can get an antique firetruck? Oops!, Wife just read post. Firetruck's out. She smiled though, Pete. grin.gif" border="0 Wayne P.S., Does he keep this stuff stored on CD's?<p>[ 08-13-2002: Message edited by: R W Burgess ]

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