Monday, July 30, 2012

One day at a time: Getting the BSA legal

  Well race fans, I realize it's been a while since my last posting. Things have gotten so incredibly busy in the last few weeks that I haven't really had time for much of anything else. Just for an idea of my schedule, I've spent the last five consecutive days in the shop for anywhere from 12-14 hours of straight work. As I write this, we have 31 days left until the team and I are rolling for Newburgh, New York.

  The past few weeks, Texas has seen the start of its legendary summer heat. Up to now we had been lucky to have very mild temperatures and almost daily rain. Now with the 100+ degree temperatures, all of the long consecutive days of work in the shop have taken their toll. I'm pretty exhausted. That being said, I know you all are interested to know about all of the progress and prep that has gone on since my last update. I'll try to remember everything I can, but I'll split things up into different posts to keep it interesting.

  In my last post I talked about everything happening inside of the trailer...more about that in the next post. I haven't really spoken much about the bike lately, and plenty has happened. First of all, I suppose I should talk about the seven weeks of hell (otherwise known as federal and state government red tape) that it took to get the BSA registered and road legal here in the State of Texas. In order to compete in the Cannonball Run, not only did I have to be legal (hence getting the motorcycle endorsement on my license a few months back), but the bike had to be legally registered in the rider's home state or country. Nice little loophole for our foreign guests, but a task to be tackled for me.

   One would think that the process wouldn't be that hard- apply for an American title, maybe have an inspection, get insurance, and bada-bing, bada-bang, bada-boom: freedom. Maybe in a perfect world....without government meddling. Grumble...grumble.... Anyway, here's how things are supposed to work with an "out of the country" motor vehicle.

 Step 1: Receive vehicle, with:
       -- appropriate foreign title (V5, as it came from England) and importation documentation (US Document HR7.

Step 2: Texas Auto-Theft Task Force VIN Verification
       -- in order to verify that your machine isn't stolen, you must deliver it for inspection and receive documentation

Step 3: Insurance
       -- self explanatory

Step 4: Hand over all documentation and purchase "Antique" license plate

  Easy, right? Well, after spending 7 aggravating weeks attempting to complete these four steps, I'm here to say "not so much." Step 1 was easy, and already covered in April. Step 2 was an absolute nightmate. The Department of Motor Vehicles only has a handful of these "task force" centers throughout the state. The one assigned to me seemed to be fixed in some sort of black hole where no communication entered or exited. For five weeks, I called almost daily to attempt to get someone on the phone. Busy signals, voicemail messages--went through it all. To make things even better, every other agency I contacted only referred me right back to square one. In all, it was easier (and more entertaining) to watch paint dry....or stick a water hose in the dirt and watch it dig a hole. Finally, about three weeks ago, I was able to make an appointment with another center who agreed to help, and the elusive 68A form was attained.

  With that step out of the way, it was time to get insurance, and a plate for Elizabeth...Thankfully everything went smoothly, and within no time I was able to cross a major block off my list.

Sweet, sweet victory!

Anyway, it's close to midnight after another 12 hour day in the shop...time to catch some zzZzzZzs. Hopefully tomorrow morning I'll be able to put up another couple posts. Next up: "Rockin' Down the Highway."


Buck Carson
Confirmed Cannonballer #3
Carson Classic Motors Race Team

1 comment:

  1. I had similar difficulties with the California DMV, when I imported my BMW R52. In my case, on top of all the correct registration documents from Germany that I supplied, they required the original bill of sale. (I bought it from a dealer over there, we signed a contract and I got a photocopy.) A bill of sale is just a piece of paper, but they wouldn't register the bike without it. Fortunately the dealer still had it and was willing to send it to me.

    Good luck with your BSA! See you in NY in a month!