Building and Registering a Trailer Frame in North Carolina

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Building and Registering a Trailer Frame in North Carolina

Postby DestinDave » Mon May 01, 2017 5:48 pm

Has anyone built their own trailer frame and registered it in North Carolina?
I'm wondering what the process is to make it legal, inspection, registration, etc..
My plans for a 4x8 teardrop have changed and I want to go 5x10 now. I could modify the 4-wide TS trailer I already have but I'd rather keep it for utility work and start with a new frame.
Any advice is appreciated.
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Re: Building and Registering a Trailer Frame in North Caroli

Postby KCStudly » Wed May 10, 2017 3:21 pm

Do an online search of your state's DMV website. That's the best starting point to find out what you need to do. If you still have questions call them.

I had to get a VIN assigned to a utility trailer I salvaged, so it needed a state inspection. Got temporary plates from my local DMV then had to go to the state inspection facility for the formal inspection.

Here's a pretty good explanation of the lighting requirements. Depending on how lax or stringent they are in your area they may not be too particular about reflectors, conspicuity tape, etc., but in my state there is only one place to get a home built inspection done (about an hour away) and they only have hours during the week before 2pm; so for me if they gig me on anything it is more lost time from my day job and another 2 hours driving to get reinspected. Not worth the hassle.

Another thing I learned was how stupid they were about establishing the load rating. I had an unlabeled axle with 1750 (about) load rated tires, but it was clearly just a 1750-2000 lb. trailer. The idiots told me to load what ever I would be towing on it and get a scale ticket, and that would be my load rating. (Slack jawed.) I said it was a UT and I didn't know what I might use it for, but i surely wanted to be able to load it to its intended capacity. So, I asked, you're going to let me over load this thing to whatever I want and call it good? he didn't really have an answer for me, just repeated his little mantra as if the only thing anyone ever hauls on the UT's is their garden tractor. I loaded an IBC tote, estimated the trailer dry weight at 500 lbs, and added enough water to get me to about a ton; went over the scales at 2200 lbs and that became my max weight. Stupid, I know, but my point is you may need a loaded scale ticket from a certified scale before you go for inspection.

The other advice I will offer is only answer their questions, don't ask any of your own or offer any unsolicited info... or they may find something else to gig you for.
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