1. Tim S

    Tim S Just Slow, Not Stalin Forum Donor

    I know that some US states are more classic car friendly than other states but with emission standards increasing how long until we are completely banned from driving our cars?

    I've read certain states only allow certain classics to be driven to/from parades and shows or only on weekends.

    Nevada for example has a 5K or less/year mileage restriction on classics but they have a NO SMOKING CAR program in effect that covers all cars and will result in notices sent out from the DMV. They provide a number to call for the public to report smoking cars. Let's see, we all know that a smoking Trabant is its nature!

    Any Nevada Trabant owners here that can offer any advice for having a Trabant there?

    Please share your current experiences from the US states that you live in. I would hate to see my beloved Trabi become something that I can only park in my living room! :) I guess this is the future of all petrol powered cars anyways. :(
  2. Buckeye601

    Buckeye601 Loyal Comrade

    Currently in Ohio, unless something has changed recently, cars over 25 years old are exempt from emissions testing, and if one pays for a regular registration, there is no restrictions on when and for how many miles they can be driven. There is a historic car registration that one can get and it has useage restrictions on where and why the car can be driven, but is a one time charge and is good as long as you own the car.

    My suspicion is that so long as the car is running as designed, they will not be prohibited. Newer but poorly maintained cars that burn a quart of oil because the engine is shot might be better to get taken off the road. There are few miles driven by truly older vehicles so prohibiting them would have little impact. That being said, it’s impossible to predict the foolishness of many politicians so who knows for sure what they might do?
    Andrew353w and kev the builder like this.
  3. Andrew353w

    Andrew353w Puttering Along

    The latest London "L.E.Z." (Low Emission Zone) was launched as a method of reducing pollution in central London. Many cynics, myself included, saw this as a method of making money out of the misery of people suffering from breathing in polluted air, which is, in reality, what it is. Back in the 1950s we had the Clean Air Act, which banned the burning of coal within the Greater London area, thus reducing and eventually removing the smog and "pea-soup" fog London had been afflicted with for many years. It worked! Fast forward 50+ years and the latest thinking is to see this pollution as a money making opportunity, not something that needs to be eradicated; "bung us £30, mate & you can carry on polluting!" is how it appears to a good many Londoners concerned about pollution.

    Mark my words, a good many other cities, both in Europe and in the U.S.A. will be following this example!
  4. Buckeye601

    Buckeye601 Loyal Comrade

    I agree that it is likely to turn into a money grab. The U.S. is very dependent, for better or worse, on personal use vehicles. Personal vehicles are, especially in the less affluent areas (outside the major metro areas like NYC, Chicago and the like) pretty much required for most people to participate in the workforce due to lack of alternative transportation. Increasing fees for me to be able to drive the car I want to on the road is not going to break me but, of course, I would prefer that not to happen. Where this becomes an issue is for those who are the true working poor who can't afford a car that is in any way modern or even properly maintained. Those cars are often polluters, but driving up fees to operate them on the road is likely to have dire consequences for those people who are barely able to afford food, rent, and gas as it is. What the solution is for removing the obviously very poorly maintained vehicles that belch black smoke everywhere they go I am not sure. I read a study many years ago (that I can't put my hands on at present) that suggested the most cost-effective way to eliminate the worst offending cars would be for the government to buy them up using money currently used in other less effective ways to address auto pollution and simply crush them so they never make it on the street again.

    I looked up the Nevada regulations, and any car 1967 or previous is exempt, and I presume that year is subject to revision as time goes on. Also exempt are "Vehicles registered as a Classic Rod, Classic Vehicle or Old Timer and driven 5,000 miles or less per year." That regulation is actually more favorable than my state of Ohio, which specifies classic vehicles are to be used only for special occasions such as parades, car shows, and the like. 5,000 miles for a Trabant is a reasonable figure if you do not use it as your primary mode of transportation it seems.

    It could get a bit dicey for a Trabant that is newer than 1967. If a car fails the test, a waiver can be requested. But, there are stipulations included for instances where a waiver will not be granted, one of which is "Smoking Vehicles - The vehicle must be repaired with no limit on cost." It does not define "smoking" specifically on the page I visited, but it is likely that a Trabant, like any other two-stroke engine machinery, would be considered as "smoking" while operating. It seems reasonable that a waiver would be issued for this situation since it is the design of the engine and cannot be "fixed," somehow I doubt lawmakers gave any consideration to Trababts and other similar vehicles, and those working in the bureaucratic state offices who could approve such an exemption likely would not.

    The Nevada page I visited was: https://dmvnv.com/emission.htm
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
    Andrew353w likes this.
  5. Kamil

    Kamil Smoking Along

    I live in Georgia and if you stay vlose to ATL you need every year emission test unless your car is 25yold then you don't need it. I live about 40 min north from the city and I don't need any emission test at all for any of my cars. Even if you have Trabant you can drive as much as you want and once a year you'll have to pay $20 for tag reneval. That's it :)
  6. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    Emission standards are not increasing.
  7. Caleb

    Caleb Loyal Comrade

    KY is pretty lax on enforcing the antique tag laws. There isn't any mileage restriction to my knowledge but they do say that if you have an antique tag your vehicle has to be over 25 years and not for daily use. So using it for thing like car shows and parades. However, I see plenty of people running around in vehicles as their daily drivers with antique tags and never really see any enforcement. I will occasionally drive the Trabi to work but that is rare. We don't have any inspections or emissions testing in KY either. Even for modern vehicles.
  8. Buckeye601

    Buckeye601 Loyal Comrade

    I have never seen nor heard of anyone here in Ohio being pulled over for using historic vehicle plates improperly either. In fact, I drove my gold '66 Toronado to work most nice days a few summers ago with the historic plates on it without issue, but I had my "cover story" ready should I have been pulled over. That car is unusual and stands out a bit on the road but probably not quite as much as a Trabant would, so I assume that a Trabant might be slightly more likely to be questioned. I am planning on just getting the standard tags for it once it is roadworthy since it is not really all that expensive and that would avoid that potential issue.
  9. Tim S

    Tim S Just Slow, Not Stalin Forum Donor

    In Nevada, as far as I can find out but I am checking further with the Compliance Dept., registering and licensing a Trabant as a classic/antique car is no problem.

    The problem lies in that they have a "No Smoking Car" law that they list a 1-800 number for people to report violators. I've heard that there are State compliance officers out-and-about looking for such vehicles and will ticket on sight.

    Odd that this only applies to petrol powered "vehicles" and diesel's are exempt and 2-stroke motorcycles aren't considered "vehicles"! I have a contact person with the compliance department that I am supposed to get in touch with next week to see if there is some loophole that may apply to Trabants but I worry that it could be bad news considering how the law is worded.
  10. turbofiat124

    turbofiat124 Premium Member Forum Donor

    I kind of doubt it. I think the police have bigger fish to fry. One cold morning a police officer was behind me. My car had yet to warm up and was smoking a bit. I was kind of afraid he might pull me over. He stayed behind me for awhile but quickly passed me. I guess he got tired of breathing that smoke!

    Tennessee has no safety or smog inspections. I believe Nashville and Memphis do , do a sniff test but not the rest of the state.

    One interesting method TN uses to control emissions in high pollution areas is to just reduce the speed limit from 70 to 65 on the interstates that pass through those counties! Rather than trying to institute a state wide emission testing program.

    As far as a smoking car. The only time mine tends to smoke is during warmup. I have seen it smoke a bit when it's below freezing even after the engine is warmed up. I'm not sure what the ambient temperature has to do with it.

    It seems some 2 cycle oils are worse at smoking than others. Years ago 2 cycle engines used straight SAE 30 weight engine oil, usually at a 16:1 ratio. My father used to cut wood and he used this old Homelite chainsaw made back in the 1970s (which I still have but does not run) and the blue smoke would just roll out of that thing.

    I'm wondering if that's why these cars were always smoking at all times in videos from the DDR. Maybe the oil they used was SAE-30 and not the modern 2 cycle oils we have today.

    You could always just wait until the engine warmed up before taking off the down the road.

    One thing I do take advantage of is our antique licence plates. If the car is more than 25 years old, I just have to pay a one time free of $65 (maybe higher now since they raised our county wheel tax) for a permanent plate.
    And I don't have to pay the county wheel tax every year.

    Otherwise it's $95 a year for my daily drivers.
  11. turbofiat124

    turbofiat124 Premium Member Forum Donor

    My 2003 Subaru has used oil from the day I bought it new. I add at least a quart between oil changes.

    It's my understanding that newer cars actually do burn oil because their tolerances have been reduced so they can get better gas mileage. I read some people were complaining why should a brand new car use 1/2 a quart to a quart between oil changes? It's probably not so much that as it is they don't like to get their hands dirty by pulling the dipstick out to check the oil level or open a bottle and add it themselves!

    My Chevy van with almost 170,000 miles uses about a quart every 1500 miles. As long as it's not fouling plugs, I'm not worried about it. That's probably why those small block Chevy engines can 500,000 miles because your always having to add fresh oil!
  12. turbofiat124

    turbofiat124 Premium Member Forum Donor

    I've been passed I couldn't tell you how many times driving back and forth to work with antique plates and have never been stopped or pulled over. The police really don't seem to care as long as the car has a valid licence plate on it. And even then before I could fabricate a licence plate bracket for the bumper on my Citroen 2CV, all I had were French plates and a police officer drove right past me! I had the car registered and the TN plate in the car , just not yet bolted to the bumper.

    Supposedly the only restriction on antiques plates is they are not supposed to be used for business purposes or technically driven back and fourth to work but everybody does. Such as if you take a load of aluminum cans to the recycler, they are not supposed to accept the cans.

    The police tend to pull over POS cars with minor offences because these are often driven by druggies.

    I think it's the fact that if you are driving an old classic car , you probably have a job, pay taxes, you are not doing drugs, your spending your money on car parts instead of drugs.

    What LIVE PD on A&E sometime!
  13. Buckeye601

    Buckeye601 Loyal Comrade

    I live in a true college town, with twice as many students here during the school year than permanent residents. The police are generally more interested in making sure the college kids are not doing something stupid than they are in bothering the permanent residents. The crime rate is quite low here in general, so they don't have a lot to do otherwise. It would not surprise me that they would stop me for the historical plates, but I suppose I could play dumb about it and see if I could talk my way out of trouble should that happen. And I live one block from the police station and have to drive past the building (with the day shift police officers arriving at work) when I head to my workplace.

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