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  #21  
Old October 17th, 2006, 08:13 PM
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Correct me if I'm wrong Ron, but there exists no direct-enforcement mechanism between the EPA and a private individual. The federal government can directly regulate the behavior of businesses under the unbrella of interstate commerce, but individuals are entirely subject to the laws and regulations of their individual states.

Just because a federal agency produces policy, individual states are not obligated to enforce it per se (of course there might be federal dollars attached to voluntary compliance!), but instead they are free to regulate activities as they like within their borders.

Personally, I applied with my state and filed a "Change of Motive Power" statement, my title and registration now state that my truck is diesel-powered. Converting a vehicle to diesel is entirely within the laws of my state and there is a mechanism in place to legitmize the documents. There is no emissions testing in my area, so its a complete non-issue. I'm not performing this service for profit, so EPA policy, in effect, does not apply to me and I am 100% legitimate.

Unless my comprehension of civics is skewed, thats the final word. I'd be curious to hear if Ron or anyone else with law degree has a different point of view.
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  #22  
Old October 18th, 2006, 08:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC
Correct me if I'm wrong Ron, but there exists no direct-enforcement mechanism between the EPA and a private individual. The federal government can directly regulate the behavior of businesses under the unbrella of interstate commerce, but individuals are entirely subject to the laws and regulations of their individual states.

Just because a federal agency produces policy, individual states are not obligated to enforce it per se (of course there might be federal dollars attached to voluntary compliance!), but instead they are free to regulate activities as they like within their borders.

Personally, I applied with my state and filed a "Change of Motive Power" statement, my title and registration now state that my truck is diesel-powered. Converting a vehicle to diesel is entirely within the laws of my state and there is a mechanism in place to legitmize the documents. There is no emissions testing in my area, so its a complete non-issue. I'm not performing this service for profit, so EPA policy, in effect, does not apply to me and I am 100% legitimate.

Unless my comprehension of civics is skewed, thats the final word. I'd be curious to hear if Ron or anyone else with law degree has a different point of view.
Although I total agree with you. If you go "by the book" the installation of a non-EPA approved engine into a road going US vehicle is not legal and the Fed laws superceed your state law (don't they?). Maine is an easy state too, no problem with diesels, but that does not get you/me past the Fedral laws of the EPA, even if our states are easy. I don't agree with it, but I think it is true. I didn't see anything in that EPA engine switching fact sheet that said it had to be a company or for profit. It just said "It is illegal to..." not "It is illegal for any company to..."

As for Rons statement about Series rigs...
In my opinion there is a world of difference between the VIN swapping BS that goes on than re-powering your existing, NHTSA certifed vehicle USA spec. That is a HUGE leap in logic that I can't follow, but I don't want to go down the road on that topic. People will justify ANYTHING to get the Defender they want and that is OK. It just means more for me to potentially work on down the road.

To each his own though. If I followed every law my Mustang would have to be one stock (no blower), my 90 could not have 35s, my Dune Buggy would be an illegal abomination, my motorcycle would need to be impounded, my 66 Mustang would ahve to go back to small wheels instead of the 17s it is running, etc. You'd have to be nuts to listen to any of this BS. If you state allows diesel swaps with their exhaust tests... go for it. If they don't... move.
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  #23  
Old October 18th, 2006, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by dnewman9
Colorado does emissions on diesels, however there are no AWD chassis dynos in the state so once you do the conversion and they verify its integrity they immediately give you a waiver to not have to test it.
As I understand it, the challenge is getting the truck's title and registration from Gas to Diesel, through an inspection. Once you do that you are clear as long as the truck stays in Colorado. If you sell it to another state 80% of the work is done as the title already reads diesel. The only challenge would be the emissions testing rules for the state.
Dennis

I am about to register my Disco in AZ after a re-power. I will be writing that up once it gets done (this weekend I hope). I am going to see if I can get a picture of the guys face when he pops the hood....it is still an auto trans though...
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  #24  
Old October 18th, 2006, 10:34 AM
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I am not advocating VIN swapping. Clearly illegal. Quite the contrary, given the amount of work than many people here put into their trucks, it is not hard to just start buying pieces from a bunch of different vehicles (including the donor pre 68) and come out with something that has the parts from 5 or 10 trucks that looks like whatever spec defender you want. This has been done, and, all things considered, seems to be more legal from a federal standpoint than a Tdi repower of a 90s defender. From a state perspective it might be a kit car, it might need to be inspected when rebuilt, but it should be legal. Look at the hot rod scene. You can build an entire 67-69 camero, 32 ford, AC cobra, or 57 chevy from parts. This is the way the defender world should go as well. Get one company to import the drivetrain, another to sell a new frame, and another to sell the bodies. Done right you could do a complete build in a week or two. I mean has anyone looked into how superformance or any of the Cobra manufacturers are doing it? It seems like it could be doable, especially as a "kit" and especially with a donor series truck and a new frame. This would get you around the feds, and then you are left with the states who will let pretty much anything fly, especially with a 67 and earlier title.

Follow-up Post:

JimC, under the Supreme Court's most recent precedent, quilting bees and pot luck suppers can be regulated under the guise of interstate commerce.
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  #25  
Old October 18th, 2006, 10:53 AM
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Just FYI in my never-ending-battle with the DOT to try and get new Defenders into the US (legally) the Superformance issue came up once. I mentioned taking an engine out of a 110 and importing it along the lines of how Superformance or Noble can import a complete car (minus engine) and that is OK, but a 110 minus its engine and gearbox is not.
The ruling on that from Coleman Sachs at the DOT was that the Superformance "kit" had "never been" a car. It had never had an engine installed and therefore was not yet a "car" and that a Defender that was "built" and then had the engine removed fell under a whole different set of rules as it had been a car, and anything that had been a car could then never go backwards to be classed as a kit or partial build.
Crazy I know, but that was the DOTs ruling.

Also the DOT has ruled that if you change a certain number of things on the car it is no longer what it was. This is total BS and basically just up to whoever wants to say what. A few years back a placed called Harland Rover in Utah was taking late model Defenders and putting Series VINs on them. The DOT busted them and you can research the case on line in the DOT data-base (freedom of information act). Harland claimed that the vehicles were old 1960s cars and they had restored them with late model parts. When you read some of the letters from the DOT to Harland Rover it becomes clear that the DOT said that Harland had changed so much of the vehicle that it was no longer a 1960s Rover and that they would have to surrender the old VINs and certify the cars as the model year that they were imported and meet all the regs for that year.

So who draws the line? Is the bulkhead the key part? Is the frame the key part?? What makes a Series II "become" a Defender when you mix and match parts.
According to the DOT it is the wheelbase and the firewall.

So according to them a Series IIA 109 with a V8, 5 speed, coil chassis etc is OK as log as it is 109" and has a Series firewall.
However a SIIA 109 built with a 110 chassis and a SIII firewall would not be legal.
Its such BS.

How many 1933 Fords out there have even one piece from a 1933 Ford? Not many I bet.

So how do you register a crate Camaro without buying a junker to get the VIN and paperwork??

I build Dune Buggies but they aren't "kits" they are the 1970s VW that we use to build them.

For more "by the book" BS, in most states, including Maine, if you change the frame of the vehicle you must surrender the original VIN and go through a the process the re-certify and get an assigned VIN. That is nuts and no one does it. Most states classify the frame as the key part. Even if you put a galv. frame under your old 88 (a replacement part)... most states would "by the book" want to take your VIN away.

Its all BS and you can back talk your way into, or out of, any part of it depending on what you want to try and justify.
Just have fun and forget about it.
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  #26  
Old October 18th, 2006, 11:16 AM
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I have dealt with replacement frames on wrecked vehicles in PA and there was a simple form to fill out and the trooper came over and looked at the new frame. Some states will restamp the new frame with the old VIN. In New York with my SII 88 all I had to do is provide pictures.

"The ruling on that from Coleman Sachs at the DOT was that the Superformance "kit" had "never been" a car. It had never had an engine installed and therefore was not yet a "car" and that a Defender that was "built" and then had the engine removed fell under a whole different set of rules as it had been a car, and anything that had been a car could then never go backwards to be classed as a kit or partial build."

Top notch loophole. Have a company contract with rover (or someone else like say brazil) to sell you complete Defenders minus the drivetrain, no title, just a kit. Have buyer purchase and install drivetrain out of whatever they want domestically, RRC etc.. Install. Superformance does not have airbags etc etc. Clearly it does not meet 2006 spec. or with their GT40 any road specs. Figure out how superformance registers its cars and copy that process. New defender without the cost of a resto on a 40k plus 93 NAS 110. Someone needs to do the infrstructure to import the bodies.

"So how do you register a crate Camaro without buying a junker to get the VIN and paperwork??"

Many states have a provision which allows the registration of "kit cars." Basically you get the thing inspected and they issue you a VIN and title for what it looks like it is. So you buy a kit camero (or more likely a 32 ford) you bring it in and you get a title that says 32 ford or 32 ford kit car.

So what we need is someone to fund a superformance Defender. Even if rover charged full price for a new defender minus the drivetrain (I doubt they would, plus the ROW and CKD kits are cheap), with a RRC/disco drivetrains as inexpensive as they are you would be rolling for basically the cost of new.
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  #27  
Old October 18th, 2006, 12:36 PM
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But the DOT said you can not "remove" the engine. The engine would have to never have been there in the first place, so that means one of the CKD would be the only thing that applies. I bet they don't even make those anymore, considering they no longer make the 110 with the 300 Tdi (aka the ROW 110). They stopped making these a few months ago. They don't even take orders for Td5s anymore.
BTW.. the Brazilian factory is closed.

BTW2.. if you did it through Rover itself (to buy the kits) as soon as LRNA caught wind of it they would shut it down. LRNA does not want any more Defenders in the USA. Why do I know this? Because LRNA was the reason we were the target of the DOT investigation when we started converting 90s to 110s. LRNA thought we were importing so they sicked the DOT on us.

With everyloop hole... you will find a catch. Trust me... I've been working on this for over a decade.
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  #28  
Old October 18th, 2006, 12:58 PM
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Ok, my first point of confusion is .. dune buggies being built in Maine ??

And next, what's the problem with collecting a pile of parts - with a brand new Designa / Marsland / Other frame (no engine ever installed!) - and assembling bits to resemble whatever your heart desires with whatever drivetrain trips your trigger, then registering it with your resident state?

I know I'm probably a broken record, but at least in Iowa the registration process is largely concerned with the vehicle and its bits not having been stolen.

I had to post a three year bond when registering the bitsa 109 since the only "title" documentation was its MoD release from the UK. The nice IA DOT lady had no interest in looking at the drivetrain, under the bonnet, etc.

I remain confused

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  #29  
Old October 18th, 2006, 01:32 PM
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Yeah man... Its warm here a few months out of the year!! I build a couple buggies a year for fun.
http://www.eastcoastrover.com/MXTR009.html

Your pile of parts depends on your state. Here in Maine we can't do it. We can't build something from nothing. We can rebuild a salvage car and such, but Maine can not generate a VIN for a pile of parts. We wanted to do this a few years ago to get one of our workers into a 90 cheap with the used parts around here, but it was not possible. VT has "parts car" rules that allow that sort of thing though, as do other states I'm sure. Building something is cool, as long as you ahve a way to register it, I say go for it.

What this all comes down to is your state... Iowa sounds easy, Maine is pretty easy too, but talk to some of the guys on this board who live in PA or NY and you'l get a whole different story on the DMV.

I went to the local DMV here to register a 101FC I had. No paperwork other than proof of insurance and a UK export document. Needless to say they couldn't find it in their books so the lady behind the counter just said, "Whatever, lets call it 12 bucks tax." Wrote the check and I was on my way.

In Maine if you convert your gas engine to diesel no one gives a sh8t.
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  #30  
Old October 18th, 2006, 01:42 PM
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"but talk to some of the guys on this board who live in PA or NY and you'l get a whole different story on the DMV."

That is funny those are the two states I have dealt with and both were fine. NY was send a picture and rubbing of the original VIN for my 88 rebuild (that came from canada with no title and no import paperword) and PA has been a bit worse, but provided you can pass a safety inspection most stuff goes through, it just takes forever. PA will screw you on emissions as there is no way to convert a gas title to diesel title, at least not that I have found.

Also, isn't Maine a non-title state for early vehicles? Issue it a registration and call it a day.
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  #31  
Old October 18th, 2006, 01:53 PM
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My PA and NY examples were just off the cuff examples... insert your own PITA state as you see fit.

Maine is a registraion state for pre-1984. Any pre-1984 is pretty easy, but if you got the wrong person at the DMV and they could not find a 101FC in there excise tax books I'm sure it could become a pain. Luckily the girls at the local DMV have come to expect something odd when I arrive. Its either a dune buggy, an old Rover or something weird.

Can't wait until I register the Amphicar there... "OK here is my paperwork to register this 1964 car. Thank you. Now I'd like to go ahead and register the same thing as a boat."

Can't wait for that one!!!!!!!
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  #32  
Old October 18th, 2006, 04:54 PM
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"Can't wait until I register the Amphicar there... "OK here is my paperwork to register this 1964 car. Thank you. Now I'd like to go ahead and register the same thing as a boat.""

No that's pretty funny Mike...thanks for the laugh.
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  #33  
Old October 19th, 2006, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by JimC
Correct me if I'm wrong Ron, but there exists no direct-enforcement mechanism between the EPA and a private individual. The federal government can directly regulate the behavior of businesses under the unbrella of interstate commerce, but individuals are entirely subject to the laws and regulations of their individual states.

Just because a federal agency produces policy, individual states are not obligated to enforce it per se (of course there might be federal dollars attached to voluntary compliance!), but instead they are free to regulate activities as they like within their borders.

Personally, I applied with my state and filed a "Change of Motive Power" statement, my title and registration now state that my truck is diesel-powered. Converting a vehicle to diesel is entirely within the laws of my state and there is a mechanism in place to legitmize the documents. There is no emissions testing in my area, so its a complete non-issue. I'm not performing this service for profit, so EPA policy, in effect, does not apply to me and I am 100% legitimate.

Unless my comprehension of civics is skewed, thats the final word. I'd be curious to hear if Ron or anyone else with law degree has a different point of view.
Since your vehicle could travel between states, much like water in a river can, the interstate commerce clause more likely than not covers it. The supreme court has ruled that navigable waters are covered under the interstate commerce clause along with semi trucks, adults transporting minors for the purposes of abortions, and just about every civil rights case has relied on it as well. I don't know of a case covering a personal vehicle under EPA laws, but what's good for water is probably as valid for a car.
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  #34  
Old October 19th, 2006, 01:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bterpstra
Since your vehicle could travel between states, much like water in a river can, the interstate commerce clause more likely than not covers it. The supreme court has ruled that navigable waters are covered under the interstate commerce clause along with semi trucks, adults transporting minors for the purposes of abortions, and just about every civil rights case has relied on it as well. I don't know of a case covering a personal vehicle under EPA laws, but what's good for water is probably as valid for a car.

Mmm, interesting, you are of course right. Maybe it is just an issue of not being able to enforce certain laws at the individual level. ECR Mike pretty much hit the nail on the head though by mentioning the well established and totally above-board auto customization industry. It is possible and common to perform mods on a host of cars that apparently have the same sticking points as Defender engine swaps.

On the unlikely chance that an enforcement agency sends me a letter, the diesel will come out and be installed in a legitimately imported 1984 110 or some such. Ah well.
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  #35  
Old October 19th, 2006, 07:34 AM
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Mike,

doesn't the wheel size rule (in Maine) only apply to cars with ABS? Non ABS cars can go 2 sizes (random?) larger.

Almost off topic.....My father had his experimental plane (400 mph pylon racer) that had fold up wings registered as a trailer.

He towed it by the tailskid.
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new expansion complete. Not only are we the only Rover shop in Eliot Maine...now we're also the biggest.

"Dedicated to the resurrection of junk through engineering?"
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  #36  
Old October 21st, 2006, 02:10 PM
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Where should we post our re-power vehicle registration stories? Might be worth considering a 'stickie' for such a list....
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  #37  
Old September 4th, 2008, 10:01 AM
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You are going to run into the ODB II thing at some point (for a 96 and newer) and I understand that there are work arounds (ODB can be made to report a-ok). I have a 95 Disco I converted and drove down to the inspection station and said "hey, this should say Diesel"....they changed it and it has not been a problem.

When I go for emissions testing is when that becomes relivent. AZ scrapes the title/reg database when they pull your VIN for emmissions testing. Ironicly, it becomes moot (for now) since they can't 'zoom test' a full time four wheel drive. I am going to be applying for full time exemption shortly, I'll let you know how that goes.
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  #38  
Old September 4th, 2008, 11:31 AM
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In NC, as soon as an inspector sees it's diesel, they immediately exempt it and just finish the safety inspection. Boom done.
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