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Old 06-10-2012, 07:15 PM   #15
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No, you DON'T need a CDL B if you're not using the RV for commercial activity. You need a NON-CDL B for private use of your RV if the GVWR is 26,001 lbs or more.

Rusty
Rusty speaks the truth about Texas requirements.

This question recycles every few months but always comes back to what's stated above.

It was mentioned that 70% was the required passing score and once one reached that level the test ended. That's true in many of the Texas offices which administer the test electronically. But, places like the Livingston office still administer paper tests... at least as of 2010 they did.

Livingston is the home of Escapees. They certainly know what you want when you speak to them about a non commercial Class A/B license for RV operation but they don't yet have the latest testing gear I guess.

Just another point about the test experience; when I prepared for it, much of what I read said I needed to be sure that I had all of the necessary emergency equipment on board... needed to understand where and how to use it all... and that it all had to comply to state law requirements. I made sure I understood all of that but I was never asked to show my emergency road side reflectors, fire extinguishers, etc. It's a good experience to all of that though...

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Old 06-10-2012, 07:52 PM   #16
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I don't understand why we cannot stay State specific when discussing this topic. The original post was for Texas. No other information applies. Shhheeeeesh!

PatStab,

Take a look at my earlier post. As stated, do a Google search on "Texas Driver License Manual" without the quotes (no need to capitalize) and you will find the entire Texas handbook in PDF form. There is absolutely no reason to order one from any source(s).

You will find both the regular and CDL versions with that search. As stated, you do not need a CDL (in Texas) to drive a MH that is not used for commercial purposes, just a regular Class A, B, or C depending on weight of the MH. All states have a reciprocal agreement when it comes to driver's licenses. If you are legally licensed in your state you are legal in all states.

Happy trails.
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Old 06-10-2012, 09:16 PM   #17
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I can't say anything about the states but in Western Canada you will reqire an airbrake endorsement on your licence. I would recommend to anyone not used to driving anything larger to get some lessons and for sure an air brake course. Air systems are much more complex than regular brakes and having a good understanding of them is vital to using them safely and to maintain them properly. Getting the proper training is money well spent and will give you confidence in knowing that you are legal and competent. Good luck.
Have a question. If you are a US citizen visiting your country do you need a special licence if your rig has air brakes?
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Old 06-10-2012, 09:26 PM   #18
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Also be ready for the test person to ask you what the clearance hieght was on the overpass you just went under.
When I took my class B CDL test, I was asked. I asked if we needed to stop and measure so they could have a sign made as it wasn't marked?
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Old 06-10-2012, 11:16 PM   #19
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Hi guys,

I just bought a 38 foot Monaco Diplomat.... Has anyone being stopped by police in Texas or any other state where this is required? If so was the Police aware of these requirements.

Danny
Since the OP asked "...or any other state where this applies..."
Here's a story about trailers and California licenses.

A friend of mine just got back from Ocatillo Wells (lots of good off-roading there). We where talking about this one hill where lots of trucks overheat because of a steep climb and because folks are towing some crazy loads of quads, motorcycles and towing buggies.

He recalled that recently he was traveling with a group that included one of those custom monster F-650 pick-ups that was towing a 3 axle toybox.

The CHP had a roadside checkpoint set-up near that big hill and they stopped the big truck. They pulled out the portable scales and cited the driver for having the wrong license for that load.

So, the answer is YES, some of the PO-LICE know the rules.

In Ca - Class "C" is the basic that most people have (good for most everything).
The weight of the big-rig demanded that the driver have a non-commercial Class"A" for a trailer over 10,000GVWR.

The non-comercial class "B" is for those big Motorhomes over 40' but not over 45'

Anything more than that and you are looking at a commercial license

Info checked with the CA-DMV RV and Travel Trailer Handbook.
http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/dl648/dl648.pdf
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Old 06-11-2012, 06:04 AM   #20
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To add another thing to the mix, my brother lives in Illinois, and had a CDL, but no longer drives a truck, retired.
He was told that to renew it he had to have his medical card renewed. Can't have a CDL without a current medical card in Illinois I guess.
I live in Missouri and have a CDL and no requirements for a current medical card when renewing here.....yet.
Happy trails
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:34 AM   #21
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I have no medical issues, well arthritus, if that counts, but only take allergy pills across the counter, premarin, sometimes arthrotec, and tramadol for my arthritus. I wear glasses but took my last eyetest without them to see if I could and passed. That's a scarey thought of people not seeing any better then that and passing, I wear them all the time and can see without them but can see a whole lot better with them!

I have read in different places you need to have someone with a current CDL or non commercial CDL drive the motorhome to the testing place, not to yourself.

I don't know anyone that can do that for me till my husband gets back home in mid July and I was wanting to get this over with. Does anyone know for sure in Texas?
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:39 AM   #22
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Thanks, I'm printing the manual now, all 111 pages of it. Gosh last test I took I don't think it was a 1/4 that size and that was 20 years ago.
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:14 AM   #23
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Since the OP asked "...or any other state where this applies..."
Here's a story about trailers and California licenses.

Info checked with the CA-DMV RV and Travel Trailer Handbook.
http://www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/dl648/dl648.pdf
Thanks so much for sharing this! I'm FROM California and had no idea they offered or required non-commercial A/B licenses. Also, I have no doubt that California Highway Patrol is very knowledgeable of this and enforce it happily.

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I have read in different places you need to have someone with a current CDL or non commercial CDL drive the motorhome to the testing place, not to yourself.

I don't know anyone that can do that for me till my husband gets back home in mid July and I was wanting to get this over with. Does anyone know for sure in Texas?
This has been discussed a number of times in the past and as I recall, the bottom line is that "most" places in Texas seem to overlook how you got your rig there... but it is technically true that you shouldn't drive it there without the proper license. Never heard of a single person being given grief about in Texas.

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Old 06-11-2012, 10:40 AM   #24
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Ok, I just called the TXDof Safety office.

I asked about getting the motorhome there and she said they don't ask how you got it there.

Also I thought the test would be just for an endorsement. She said the test is an overview of Chapter 15 of the manual. I just went to that and it is Special Requirements for Commerical Moter Vehicles. I told her it was a non commercial CDL B, yet that is what I have to study I guess. Sounds like I have to take a whole drivers written test again, its been 20 years, so I know I've forgotten a lot or laws may have changed. Looks like I need to read through 111 pages of the manual.

Also they do require a driving test. Not concerned about that except for parrell parking. I've not had to parallel park this thing or my other one when I traveled over 20k miles in it. Interesting, guess I will practice in the yard, I have lots of obstacles out there I have to get around.
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Old 06-11-2012, 11:17 AM   #25
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Pat.... it sounds like you found someone who knew what they were talking about.

I remember the test covering chapter 15 but sure don't remember having to study 111 pages.

As for parallel parking... it seems a few do require it but I was only asked to back my coach up in a straight line (using my mirrors... I wouldn't rely too much on the rear camera) for about 150 feet. I don't understand the need to parallel park either but I guess they're looking to see if you can handle your rig. They had me drive through "downtown" Livingston. There were some tight turns to make at intersections and I think they were looking to see if I panicked or hit anyone.

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Old 06-11-2012, 11:37 AM   #26
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One of the items during the driving test that I remember was the inspector telling me that when I made a left hand turn, if the rear wheels crossed the dividing line of the highway it was an automatic fail. I guess the assume that if a car were waiting to make a turn it would have been hit. The other one was "Turn right, stay right." The don't want you going up on the curb when you make a right hand turn, but the also do not want you encroaching into the other lane on the road you are turning into. You can swing just wide enough to ensure your right hand turn is okay. I pulled half way into the left lane, mad the wide swing turning the corner and came into the new lane in the right hand lane.

Others may have some other tips.
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Old 06-11-2012, 12:25 PM   #27
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I don't know if I can pass the driving test or not but will try. I swing wide when turning right if no other vehicle is there. If there I kind of wait a minute to get additional space and yes I swing into that lane but straighten up quickly and get back in the right one, especially if a 2 way street. I don't want to wrap the back end around any signal lights.

Also turning left I used to use the outside lane with my 20 ft trailer that I haul stuff on. But a car squeezed up between me on the left and got into my fender of the trailer. Didn't hurt our old steel plate trailer, hardly bumped me, I just saw it in the mirror, going to happen before I could react quick enough to go further over, but did the front fender of his car. He said I was in his lane, I'm pretty positive I wasn't but not enough to argue the issue so I was considered at fault, first accident in 20 years. I think he zipped up in there from the other lane trying to get around me before I completed my turn and it caught his car, he also had some damage further back. Right after this underpass the street goes back to 2 lanes so he was going to get past me before there. Pretty sure when he told me this was the 2nd or 3rd accident he had had like that, people turning into him. Well duh, stay away from stuff like that.

My husband said take the inside lane when turning left and it will keep anyone from getting on my left like that so I do.

One thing for sure I will NOT have my husband anyplace around me when I take these tests, he makes me a nervous wreck. Do this, do that, I told him he needs to leave me alone when driving or it could cause an accident. Without him I have driven all over this country accident free, knock on wood, not bragging for sure, just lucky also, had a lot of close calls. Down here the drivers are crazy and I appreciate what truck drivers go through. I try to leave space around me and cars or pickups will veer in there. Also I just love it when they jump in front of me, then cram on the brakes trying to get to an exit or slowing down quicker then I can. I try to skirt big cities when possible or go straight though. The lesser traveled roads are for me.

I am only taking this because if I had an accident I would have insurance problems and likely would get ticketed no matter who was at fault.

I will study and try not to worry about it and get nervous. Just have to see how it goes. Guess if I don't make it first time I can take it again. Never failed any kind of test in my life, but there is always a first time. Going to read and study this week and see if I can get it over with before I go anywhere.

Right now my husband is working in Indonesia and they drive on the other side of the road. You should see him when he first gets home, he has to consciously think which lane to turn in. He does not drive home from the airport, I do, between jet lag and a change in driving he is very careful about that. He does have a CDL and keeps it.
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Old 06-11-2012, 12:35 PM   #28
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Like so many things, Pat, we tend to get ourselves worried about how well we'll perform when tested... and then learn that the reality of the challenge is not nearly as scary as we had made it out to be. I did the same thing when I was preparing for the test and it was all a peace of cake.

You'll do just fine.

One other note on the process in Texas:

I failed the eye test! DW and I have both had "mono vision" laser surgery, which means that one of our eyes is for reading and the other is for distance. That just doesn't work well with the machine they used for testing in Livingston.

I had to go to a local optometrist to undergo an exam and then bring a note from the Dr explaining that my vision was fine in normal operating environments.

Rick
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