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Thread: Air Brakes for Under CDL Vehicles

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    Member Thundurbyrd's Avatar
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    Air Brakes for Under CDL Vehicles

    I have been asked if you are required to have a CDL with an air brake endorsement if the vehicle is under 26,000 GVWR a lot lately, and I couldn't find an answer anywhere. So I called the Federal Motor Carrier and Saftey Administration to clarify.
    The ruling is that license requirement comes before endorsement requirement, and since a CDL is not required for that vehicle, the air brake endorsement is not required.
    I hope this will clarify this issue.
    Nick Rett
    QT Equipment Inc.

    http://www.qtequipment.com

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    Senior Member dirt digger's Avatar
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    i have always wondered the same thing...thanks

    it doesn't really make a whole lot of sense to me, if you let guys w/o CDL's drive airbrake trucks then why do us with CDL's need to go through all that testing...anyway....

    i can't imagine thats the same for HazMat vehicles though...like those pickups that transport fireworks and all, i'm sure they still need a HazMat endorsment
    Civil Engineer EIT
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    Member Thundurbyrd's Avatar
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    I know...
    It seems a little backwards to me, and maybe the standard driver's license should offer some of these options to make things a little safer on the roadways. The question was posed to the Federal Motor Carrier and Saftey Administration about requiring a CDL if the vehicle had air brake, but they said that they only handle vehicles over 26,000 GVW and anything under that is not their jurisdiction.
    Nick Rett
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    Senior Member hvy 1ton's Avatar
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    I'm sure i know somebody with a class c and a airbrake endorsement. I can't remember who, it is. I remember seeing it on their license.

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    Yeah it is strange, how you don't need a CDL for a truck under 26,000 lbs with air brakes. When my son went for his Class A he took one of my friends Pete 6 wheelers under 26,000 lbs with a 20 ton tag. That classified the truck as a Class A truck, but when he drove with no trailer he just needed a Class D license. If you have a Ford F-350 with a 10,500 lbs trailer you need a Class A. But all these people who run around pulling big campers and RV'S don't need a cdl.

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    Senior Member LT-x7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikef87 View Post
    If you have a Ford F-350 with a 10,500 lbs trailer you need a Class A. But all these people who run around pulling big campers and RV'S don't need a cdl.
    Whats the deal with that? I see guys all the time with big 40ft triple axel toy haulers behind 3/4 ton trucks. I know all these guys don't have a CDL, and what about weight stickers. Does it change with a private rig?

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    Senior Member dirt digger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LT-x7 View Post
    Whats the deal with that? I see guys all the time with big 40ft triple axel toy haulers behind 3/4 ton trucks. I know all these guys don't have a CDL, and what about weight stickers. Does it change with a private rig?
    you need to have a CDL for anything over 10,000lbs and if the GVCW exceeds what the sticker on your truck says you need to register that with the state...it affects registration costs i believe

    but i think the rules change if your rig in "not for hire" not sure though...i know i have my class A so i never have to worry about it
    Last edited by dirt digger; 09-23-2008 at 05:59 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LT-x7 View Post
    Whats the deal with that? I see guys all the time with big 40ft triple axel toy haulers behind 3/4 ton trucks. I know all these guys don't have a CDL, and what about weight stickers. Does it change with a private rig?
    I've always wondered that. Also if a guy driving a F-350 tow truck tows a F-350 dual wheel technically you need a Class A because the vehicle being towed is over 10,000 lbs. I know someone who got in trouble because he didn't have a CDL and was driving a loader over 26,000 lbs. I do know there is a restriction on how big of a boat you can tow before you need a CDL.

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    Senior Member Dirtman2007's Avatar
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    I've got a F250 and pull the skid steer and mini excavators on our tri axle trailer with 24,000 gross weighted plates on my truck. trailer and skid steer have a weight of about 15-16,000 lbs. Never had a problem with towing that.
    Chris

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    Quote Originally Posted by LT-x7 View Post
    Whats the deal with that? I see guys all the time with big 40ft triple axel toy haulers behind 3/4 ton trucks. I know all these guys don't have a CDL, and what about weight stickers. Does it change with a private rig?
    Yes... the C in CDL is for commercial
    Somebody towing their toy hauler technically needs a non-commercial class A. Likewise, somebody driving one of those big bus-like RVs needs a non-commercial class B.

    http://www.dmv.state.pa.us/driverLic..._classes.shtml

    Definition of a commercial vehicle is "a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used in commerce to transport passengers or property" per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA):

    http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...?section=383.5

    Somebody towing their toys to the lake is not involved in commerce. Somebody towing their skidsteer to a jobsite is (you're getting paid).

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    Joe

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    Senior Member Freightrain's Avatar
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    Usually they don't make too many truck UNDER 26K with air brakes. No need for them. Anymore they make sure to keep them with squirt brakes to eliminate any problems.
    59 B61 Mack

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    Member Thundurbyrd's Avatar
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    The reason this has been coming up more often is because more chassis manufactures are offering air brakes on trucks under 26,00 GVW. A lot of people prefer the better stopping power of air and the longer brake life they are getting.
    I was talking with a Pete dealer about there 19,500 GVW chassis and it has an option for air brakes.
    Nick Rett
    QT Equipment Inc.

    http://www.qtequipment.com

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    Senior Member LT-x7's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Electra_Glide View Post
    Yes... the C in CDL is for commercial
    Somebody towing their toy hauler technically needs a non-commercial class A. Likewise, somebody driving one of those big bus-like RVs needs a non-commercial class B.
    Whats the difference between a commercial and a non-commercial? Besides the obvious.


    Quote Originally Posted by Electra_Glide View Post
    http://www.dmv.state.pa.us/driverLic..._classes.shtml

    Definition of a commercial vehicle is "a motor vehicle or combination of motor vehicles used in commerce to transport passengers or property" per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA):

    http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...?section=383.5

    Somebody towing their toys to the lake is not involved in commerce. Somebody towing their skidsteer to a jobsite is (you're getting paid).
    --
    Joe
    How do they prove your involved in commerce? As long as you own the skidsteer, for all anyone knows you could be hauling it from your house to a friends house to work for free.

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    here in NY you can drive under 26000 with a class D. but if it has air brakes you do need the CDL B or better. and technicaly anyone towing a trailer with a gvw of 10,000 or better needs an A. those landscapers with a 5 ton trailer behind a 350 series dumper, needs a class A. its not enforced all that much.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikef87 View Post
    I've always wondered that. Also if a guy driving a F-350 tow truck tows a F-350 dual wheel technically you need a Class A because the vehicle being towed is over 10,000 lbs. I know someone who got in trouble because he didn't have a CDL and was driving a loader over 26,000 lbs. I do know there is a restriction on how big of a boat you can tow before you need a CDL.
    do you know if i can take my CDL A driving test with a 3500 and a 10 ton trailer?

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