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Old 12-06-2019, 08:21 PM   #21
denis4x4
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Default Re: Model A Registration Woes

Over on the HAMB they have pretty much eliminated threads like this. Most of the ideas here border on the illegal. Maine has a set of rules. Ask their DMV what is acceptable. Finally, consider how cutting corners may effect the sale to the next owner.
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Old 12-06-2019, 09:29 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Ed in Maine View Post
Today I went to look at a 1931 Model A that is for sale. I liked it, it is a good ten footer in very good running condition. The price was negotiated and I am happy with it. This is the situation:
1. The owner has passed away and his wife is selling the car.
2. The car has an out of state plate and registration and a title. It seems that the owner felt it was more convenient to keep the old paper work then to re-register the car in his new home state.
3. I have a copy of the title and death certificate and plan to go to the DMV for advice before I seal the deal with payment.
4. After I got back home, I find that the VIN # on the title does not match the number on the engine. The engine must have been changed when it was rebuilt. I suppose the VIN # on the frame may match the title but who wants to go through all the work of removing the front fender?


I want the car but I'm afraid I will be laughed out of the DMV trying to register a car with a different ID number. Has anyone run across a situation like this? Any suggestions? Thank you, Ed
I had a similar situation with the car I bought several years ago. Two of the previous owners were deceased, car was passed on to second owner's daughter. Our state allowed for a notarized affidavit from the daughter to enable me to register the car and get a new title. Part of the process involved removing the fender, loosening the body bolts and slighty lifting the body enough to read the vin---not a big job. Start with your state dmv, as others have said, every state is different. You probably have several options, just consider them all before you act.
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Old 12-06-2019, 10:30 PM   #23
Ernie Vitucci
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Default Re: Model A Registration Woes

Good Evening! I would like to add my two cents to going to AAA first, if you are or are not a member. Their reason for being is to help with problems like this. They will know what will work and what will not work. What is legal and what is not. Ernie in Arizona
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Old 12-07-2019, 07:26 AM   #24
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Default Re: Model A Registration Woes

Most of these answers are solutions looking for a problem.I repeat,Maine is NON TITLE for the old cars.We have been dragging cars out of the willywags and driving them since there have been cars.Maine and N.H. doesn't have the reverence for documents and such that other states have.i know people find it hard to believe,but they really don't much care.If you have something that is actually stolen,that is a different story,Talk to local guys,and they will tell you in two minutes how to do it legally.
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Old 12-07-2019, 10:05 AM   #25
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I 100% agree with Keith.

Try to talk to some locals. Bring as few docs to the registry as possible. The more docs you bring is more of a chance of confusion and opening a can of worms that you originally didn't have.

In your first post, you said taking off the fender to find the numbers. It is the body that must be lifted to find the numbers.
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Old 12-07-2019, 10:46 AM   #26
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By your original post, I take it the owner has a valid title, albeit in another state. That's OK. An engine number matching the original VIN is NOT required, probably a large majority of vintage cars out there have the same thing. So, I don't see a problem. Have the owner's wife write you out a bill of sale and give you a death certificate, bring it to the DMV office and have it transferred into your name. It should be simple and straightforward. There is no law that says you can't stamp a VALID VIN on other parts of the car, in fact some theft deterrent practices do just that. Once it was my car, I'd buy a nice professional VIN tag and afix it to the frame somewhere reasonably easy to see, maybe by the starter or ??? If you KNOW the engine number is in fact NOT the correct VIN, you can remove it. Its not necessary, but can make the process less confusing. Re-stamping the engine with the correct, valid VIN is not only acceptable, it should ALWAYS be done when a replacement engine is installed. You cannot legally remove or deface the true VIN, which is located on the frame, under the body. Its a matter of common sense. If it was me, I'd make the sale agreement contingent on the title transfer. A reasonable seller will be OK with that. What you are looking at here, if I'm understanding the situation correctly, is not going to be an issue. Have all the paperwork in order, state the facts clearly to the DMV, and then close your mouth and let them do their job.
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Old 12-07-2019, 11:21 AM   #27
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Hi, I'm in Maine and what Keith says is the right way to go. You do not need a title for an old car in Maine.
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Old 12-07-2019, 12:12 PM   #28
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AAA processes titles in CALI- nowhere else that I am aware of...........
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Old 12-07-2019, 12:21 PM   #29
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Default Re: Model A Registration Woes

EVERY state is different when it comes to vehicle registration. EVERY state. Advice for what works in California or Minnesota, or Arizona, or Colorado, or ANY other state is worthless. What works in Ohio WILL NOT work in Maine. ONLY what works in Maine will work in Maine.
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Old 12-07-2019, 01:49 PM   #30
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EVERY state is different when it comes to vehicle registration. EVERY state. Advice for what works in California or Minnesota, or Arizona, or Colorado, or ANY other state is worthless. What works in Ohio WILL NOT work in Maine. ONLY what works in Maine will work in Maine.
come to taxachussets they do not work for this country. I bought a 1923
ford thats been entombed since 1943. for a title these brain dead idiots want me to dig up a grave for the woman original owner to sign bill of sale; the car went
through couple of hands so I bought it and no one registered it. I paid hard
cash for the thing. I know as an old man flipping out, is this country is
big time with vehicles, ok, school shootings thats ok, ah, but you got a bulb out you are in deep shit. No can do; right jolly roger cross bone. pic of a plate print and paste done. then inspection sticker. for $39 bucks it flew
right off the window. and I have to get another one for their cheap glue no way ; So what I need to now is the billions of dollars in this dump RMV where does does all this money go ? Ah Charley baker another ha ya ah
bill Clinton bro. brain dead pollitition. Where is our pot hole asphalt::: Im sorry'' but being old man no way ta get out of here and its a long walk to down south ........................
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Old 12-07-2019, 03:56 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by eagle View Post
By your original post, I take it the owner has a valid title, albeit in another state. That's OK. An engine number matching the original VIN is NOT required, probably a large majority of vintage cars out there have the same thing. So, I don't see a problem. Have the owner's wife write you out a bill of sale and give you a death certificate, bring it to the DMV office and have it transferred into your name. It should be simple and straightforward. There is no law that says you can't stamp a VALID VIN on other parts of the car, in fact some theft deterrent practices do just that. Once it was my car, I'd buy a nice professional VIN tag and afix it to the frame somewhere reasonably easy to see, maybe by the starter or ??? If you KNOW the engine number is in fact NOT the correct VIN, you can remove it. Its not necessary, but can make the process less confusing. Re-stamping the engine with the correct, valid VIN is not only acceptable, it should ALWAYS be done when a replacement engine is installed. You cannot legally remove or deface the true VIN, which is located on the frame, under the body. Its a matter of common sense. If it was me, I'd make the sale agreement contingent on the title transfer. A reasonable seller will be OK with that. What you are looking at here, if I'm understanding the situation correctly, is not going to be an issue. Have all the paperwork in order, state the facts clearly to the DMV, and then close your mouth and let them do their job.
GREAT ADVICE !!
Eagle, you da man. Would just add that the frame number ideally must match the title number - especially important when the vehicle is sold at a later date to someone out of state. Admittedly, difficult to check but good to know.
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Old 12-08-2019, 03:31 PM   #32
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Default Re: Model A Registration Woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed in Maine View Post
Today I went to look at a 1931 Model A that is for sale. I liked it, it is a good ten footer in very good running condition. The price was negotiated and I am happy with it. This is the situation:
1. The owner has passed away and his wife is selling the car.
2. The car has an out of state plate and registration and a title. It seems that the owner felt it was more convenient to keep the old paper work then to re-register the car in his new home state.
3. I have a copy of the title and death certificate and plan to go to the DMV for advice before I seal the deal with payment.
4. After I got back home, I find that the VIN # on the title does not match the number on the engine. The engine must have been changed when it was rebuilt. I suppose the VIN # on the frame may match the title but who wants to go through all the work of removing the front fender?


I want the car but I'm afraid I will be laughed out of the DMV trying to register a car with a different ID number. Has anyone run across a situation like this? Any suggestions? Thank you, Ed
I kinda backed into the situation, you have. Here in Missouri, I bought a car with a title from a fellow in the state. The difference is he was still alive and the title was current. But the same problem! I noted after I bought the car that the title and motor number did not match. The car is a 1930 and the motor is 1931 according to the number on the block.
No one at the Missouri office checked and neither did I. And from what I can tell, this is not an uncommon issue on a Model A where the motor has been replaced, either with a Model A engine or a later V8. It would be difficult and more confusing, I think, for any state to try and keep changing the serial number of the car to match engine Serial numbers. Just my 2 cents
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Old 12-08-2019, 05:53 PM   #33
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And from what I can tell, this is not an uncommon issue on a Model A where the motor has been replaced, either with a Model A engine or a later V8. It would be difficult and more confusing, I think, for any state to try and keep changing the serial number of the car to match engine Serial numbers. Just my 2 cents
Its a simple and perfectly legal solution to just restamp the engine to match the car VIN.
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Old 12-08-2019, 09:21 PM   #34
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Why don't you just restamp the engine number to match the title. Go on EBay and buy a blank vin plate, and have it stamped to match the engine and title. Mount it under the floorboard on the crossmember. It might not be the most ethical thing to do, but on an 80 year old car and a young person at the DMV, it works!

Last edited by fredski53; 12-08-2019 at 09:23 PM. Reason: Spelling
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Old 12-08-2019, 10:21 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by eagle View Post
And from what I can tell, this is not an uncommon issue on a Model A where the motor has been replaced, either with a Model A engine or a later V8. It would be difficult and more confusing, I think, for any state to try and keep changing the serial number of the car to match engine Serial numbers. Just my 2 cents
Its a simple and perfectly legal solution to just restamp the engine to match the car VIN.
Quote:
Originally Posted by fredski53 View Post
Why don't you just restamp the engine number to match the title. Go on EBay and buy a blank vin plate, and have it stamped to match the engine and title. Mount it under the floorboard on the crossmember. It might not be the most ethical thing to do, but on an 80 year old car and a young person at the DMV, it works!
As post #2 said answers are state specific. You guys might want to do a little research on changing VIN numbers, at least read about it on GOOGLE and check with your local DMV. A final thought, don't believe everything you read on the internet just because it agrees with what you want to hear.

Charlie Stephens

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Old 12-08-2019, 10:37 PM   #36
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Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 511, the alteration of a VIN, could be a federal criminal offense. Further, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 2321 whoever buys, receives, possesses, or obtains control of, with intent to sell or otherwise dispose of, a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part, knowing that an identification number for such motor vehicle or part has been removed, obliterated, tampered with, or altered, could be fined or imprisoned for up to ten years. Similarly, Pennsylvania’s statutes also address this matter. Specifically, 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 7703 states that a person who alters, counterfeits, defaces, destroys, disguises, falsifies, forges, obliterates or removes a vehicle identification number with the intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity or prevent the identification of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part commits a felony of the third degree and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than $50,000, or both. Further, and most concerning is that pursuant to 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 7704 any person who purchases, receives, disposes, sells, transfers or possesses a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part with knowledge that the vehicle identification number of the motor vehicle or motor vehicle part has been altered, counterfeited, defaced, destroyed, disguised, falsified, forged, obliterated or removed with the intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity or prevent the identification of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part commits a felony of the third degree and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than $50,000, or both. Moreover consider, especially with the case of restamped engines that, in Pennsylvania, it is illegal knowingly buy, or sell an automotive part from which the manufacturer’s name plate, serial number or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered or destroyed unless instructed or done by the manufacturer. 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 4104.
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Old 12-08-2019, 11:15 PM   #37
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You can go to your local town hall in Maine and register your "new" Model A. They will not take your old title and issue a new title. No new titles for antique cars like Keith says. Do not go to the DMV. Are you a member of a club here in Maine? The Pine Tree A's meet monthly in Kennebunk.


Put the old title you get with the car and the old registration and put it in a safe place in case you ever sell the vehicle to someone in a state that requires a title and/or old registration.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:32 AM   #38
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You can go to your local town hall in Maine and register your "new" Model A. They will not take your old title and issue a new title. No new titles for antique cars like Keith says. Do not go to the DMV. Are you a member of a club here in Maine? The Pine Tree A's meet monthly in Kennebunk.


Put the old title you get with the car and the old registration and put it in a safe place in case you ever sell the vehicle to someone in a state that requires a title and/or old registration.
I would agree with the first half of this statement. But I would disagree with the second. If you have the title from the seller to keep for a future sale this would be a 'skip'. Skipped titles are illegal and no good in my state (MD) so that would narrow a future sale to just 49 of them, also just a bill of sale from Maine would be impossible to register in MD. I have never used one of the guys that advertise clear titles in any state but I guess one of them could do the job for the right fee.
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Old 12-09-2019, 09:47 AM   #39
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Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 511, the alteration of a VIN, could be a federal criminal offense. Further, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 2321 whoever buys, receives, possesses, or obtains control of, with intent to sell or otherwise dispose of, a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part, knowing that an identification number for such motor vehicle or part has been removed, obliterated, tampered with, or altered, could be fined or imprisoned for up to ten years. Similarly, Pennsylvania’s statutes also address this matter. Specifically, 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 7703 states that a person who alters, counterfeits, defaces, destroys, disguises, falsifies, forges, obliterates or removes a vehicle identification number with the intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity or prevent the identification of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part commits a felony of the third degree and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than $50,000, or both. Further, and most concerning is that pursuant to 18 Pa. C.S.A. § 7704 any person who purchases, receives, disposes, sells, transfers or possesses a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part with knowledge that the vehicle identification number of the motor vehicle or motor vehicle part has been altered, counterfeited, defaced, destroyed, disguised, falsified, forged, obliterated or removed with the intent to conceal or misrepresent the identity or prevent the identification of a motor vehicle or motor vehicle part commits a felony of the third degree and, upon conviction, shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than $50,000, or both. Moreover consider, especially with the case of restamped engines that, in Pennsylvania, it is illegal knowingly buy, or sell an automotive part from which the manufacturer’s name plate, serial number or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered or destroyed unless instructed or done by the manufacturer. 18 Pa.C.S.A. § 4104.
A really good read which highlights the murky interpretations for Model As.The concept of VIN numbers was not established until 1955, and therefore, the engine number or frame number is not actually a VIN - although some states take it to be so. With engine changes over 90 years it is clearly unreasonable to tie vehicle ID with the block number. The frame number is forever - but is difficult to see. On a rare occasion,there is no frame number. All this complicates Model A titling where some states force fit current rules which make titling impossible. Good advice is still get the facts from your state, and be prepared to pass on the deal if the climb is just too steep and expensive. Changing engine numbers happens all the time and legality is debatable. No question that the frame number should never be altered. By strictest interpretation of the rules, in some states titling is just too hard to mess with if the numbers do not all agree.
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Old 12-09-2019, 11:21 AM   #40
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The A used the serial number,it was not called a VIN.The Branham bible,the book used by town clerks for info to register cars states the Model A Ford uses the engine number,and shows a picture of the number pad.No mention of the frame number.My Branham book is 1932.My Canadian chassis have no frame numbers.In Maine this is not difficult or costly.I sold a 65 VW to a guy in Maine last summer,we made out a bill of sale but got to gabbing and he left it on the toolbox in my garage.A month later he drove in with the car,he got it registered with no problem.There are supposed to be procedures in place in every state to deal with other states requirements,but the clerks in other states seem to ignore that fact,and won't even bother trying to help you.Maine and N.H.are just not like that.Talk to anybody around you that registers pre-title cars,and go to the town clerk with the info they tell you to.
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