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10/20/2017 1:01:18 AM
9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 7/21/2005 12:59:24 PM EDT
I've got a bike with title issues--nothing illegal, just "different". I need advice on the best course of action.

Link Posted: 7/21/2005 1:40:05 PM EDT
Go to a third party title place, it is worth the "convenience fee".
Link Posted: 7/21/2005 2:34:31 PM EDT
I've am/was certified to do level 1 inspections... hit me up, I might be able to help
Link Posted: 7/31/2005 9:24:32 PM EDT
No one, huh?
Link Posted: 8/1/2005 11:27:22 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/1/2005 11:34:44 AM EDT by 3rdpig]
I don't work at the MVD but in my 12 years in AZ I've had 3 run in's with the MVD over custom motorcycles. I don't know if my experiences can help you any, but here they are.

First time was with a shovelhead chopper that I brought with me from Washington state. It was in a Jammer frame which I had bought used. The original MSO was gone and when I licensed it in WA they accepted the handwritten bill or sale and gave me an asisgned number and called it a "Homemade Motorcycle" Arizona refused to transfer the title unless the engine and frame numbers matched, which of course they didn't. I took it through level 1 inspection (Sorry RobM, no offense intended, but what a pack of morons) they again refused to transfer the legal WA title and told me instead that I could put up a bond for the full value of the motorcycle and license it as new...and of course pay the tax and licensing fees for a new motorcycle despite the fact that it's really a 72 HD and WA had it listed as a 76 Homemade. I told them where they could stick their bond and took the bike home. The next day I bought a set of number and letter stamps at the local Ace hardware store, stamped the engine numbers on the frame neck, repainted the area, rubbed it up to make it look like it was the same age as the rest of the paint and took it to a different MVD. I had my title in less than an hour for a 72 HD.

Next was another custom motorcycle that I'd built just before I left WA but never titled or licensed. It had a custom frame and a custom engine and I had MSO's for both. The MVD refused to license it because they couldn't think of what to call it on the Title. Oh, that's not what they said, they gave me a run around about insurance (I wasn't trying to license it, just title), then a run around about not having receipts for the wheels, tires and other small parts. Finally after weeks of hassles at at least 3 trips to the MVD office with the bike in a truck, I got them to admit that it was all about what to put as the name of the manufacturer on the title. I finally got into the managers office and refused to leave without a title. I invited him to call the police and I'd call the media and the governors office. I told them what to call the bike. They did give me a title but called it something totally ignorant, which isn't surprising as "ignorant" pretty much describes them.

This last time I had bought a complete 1980 FLT off Ebay, everything less the engine (which the owner had used to build a custom bike). I wanted to pull the shovelhead out of my chopper (which my back just won't take anymore) and put it in the bagger chassis. I first called the MVD in the hopes that I could avoid the previous hassles. I got transferred to their enforcement group, got answers to my questions on what to do and how to license it. I built the bike and took it to the MVD with all my paperwork in order. Surprise, surprise, they refused to title and license it. Despite the fact that I had a the Florida title to the FLT, the AZ title to my chopper and bills of sale from the FLT owners (which is what the enforcement group said was all I needed), they refused to transfer the title to the rolling chassis as there was no engine present and refused to license the bike as the frame and engine numbers didn't match. I explained everything to their manager but was sent packing. This time I didn't fight, with them. Since the original frame numbers are on the front of the steering neck I'd left off the fairing when I took it down. I replaced the fairing and stamped the engine numbers on the side of the frame neck in plain sight and as far as I'm concerened it's still the original chopper with a bunch of new parts. I've been through emissions several times, and relicensed it several times and never had a problem. They see the numbers in plain sight, compare them with the engine numbers and that's as good for them. Of course I carry a copy of both titles and the bill of sale in the glove box just in case.

I won't even go into the problems I've had with a classic Mustang and an old Jeep, both which also came with me from WA, and I won't even start on the emissions test and the morons that work there, that's a story in itself.

The MVD employees that I've encountered have been not only a pack of blithering idiots, but have done their very best to obstruct and make as difficult as possible anything that they're required to do. Like the Capitol One commercial, they seem to take great delight in saying NO. They're also the slowest moving, slowest thinking so called working people that I've ever seen. Not a single one I've dealt with could hold a real job for a freaking week.

In each and every case I was doing something totally legal but because it wasn't in their playbook they weren't going help me. I was forced to scam them to get anything done. So, best course of action? Don't tell the the truth. Scam them and be done with it, it's probably the only way you'll get anything accomplished that doesn't appear in their "book".

What amazes me is that in this world where so many flaky people are living on the edge of insanity, why more people haven't gone Postal on the MVD.
Link Posted: 8/1/2005 1:30:14 PM EDT
I know what you mean... and I've delt with the kind of stuff you describe (when it comes to stupidty) several times.

When I did level 1 inspections, I did them for the car dealership I worked for at the time - never touched a private party inspection. In a year and several dozen inspections only 2 had to go to the Level 2 inspections for missing vin plates.

When it comes to motorcycles, the laws change drasticly -- a bike with a different fame vs engine serial# according to AZ law is a salvage title immediately (stupid imo).

The class was a joke, most people didn't pay attention -- I thought it was cool personally, learned a lot of what they look for, what they don't care about and what VIN#'s mean -- I really wish I could find my Vin # book.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 3:17:49 PM EDT
Sorry it took my so long to reply...

3rdpig, I've gotten a taste of your experiences. My issue is concerns a rare Honda with a CA title who's VIN does not fit the format of a typical VIN. Apparently all vehicles officially imported into the US have 17 digit VINs. The title and frame of this bike both have the same number, but it's the number of digits in the VIN that is the issue.

What is the "bonded title" you mentioned?

I fear that since my original (and last) visit to the MVD with this bike (several years ago), the bike's info may have been "black flagged".

It really sucks because I bought this particular bike specifially because it DID already have a title. Now and can't even get it transfered into my name to sell it, let alone have it registered for street use.

I wish I could at least get a new CA title issued in my name. But I don't know how to do that being that I don't really know anyone in CA who could help. Does anyone know if it's possible to get a CA title transfered by way of mail??
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