View Full Version : chassis engineering design

12-31-2005, 11:49 AM
Hello, I have a question ? Anybody know if there are any chassis plans engineered on line that I could bring to the RMV to get stamped for approval. I would like to build a chassis and basic body for a hot rod or a little speedster.

12-31-2005, 12:29 PM
Hello Fred,

I have to ask...what is "RMV"?

12-31-2005, 12:31 PM
I think that would be regisrty of motor vehicles.


12-31-2005, 12:38 PM
what kind of car do you want to build, and what are the requirements of the desging for it to be approved ?

also, what style do you want ? will a 2"x3" "ladder frame with crossmembers for the frame and, the tranny and rear spings be acceptable?

what kind of suspension are you going to be using? drop axle in front & live axle rear or will you be using independant suspensions on one / both ends ?

im curently drawing up some basic plans primarily designed for a t bucket street rod, and if you can wait a few weeks i can possibly get you something to use

12-31-2005, 12:57 PM
I plan on building a ladder type frame with a mustang II front end. The body is still in design phase. RMV stands for Regisrty of Motor Vehicles

12-31-2005, 01:18 PM
I plan on building a ladder type frame with a mustang II front end. The body is still in design phase. RMV stands for Regisrty of Motor Vehicles

alright, mustang II i CANT do, im still searching for plans / measurements so that i can include them in the final version of the plans so that people can build as much or little of a MII front uspension as they want, and buy the rest

this is part of the plans that i currently have, down the left side youll see a number of different frame designs, they are for as follows:

1) leaf spring
2) coil over
3) single leaf spring
4) equal length parallel 4 link
5) (shown on the car) redo of #2, done with rounded corners for a mandrel bent look and less height to the raised section of the frame

youll see that 3 of the 4 are shown with the axle bracket for radius rod style suspension, which is simply the first style i drew up, and i copied it over a few times so that each illistration had the same basic starting point

i still have to come up with final measurements for everything, and i also have to figure out how i want to design the rear frame for quarter elliptical springs

heres the quarter elliptical setup that ill be basing my design off of


let me know what you want your wheelbase to be , what you want the frame width to be, and what style rear suspension your thinking of going with and ill draw up a load of stuff that fills those needs for you

12-31-2005, 01:32 PM

Wescott Auto Frames has serveral of the original Ford chassis frames in pdf format.


01-01-2006, 09:15 AM
Thanks For The Help Guys , Has Anybody Ever Delt With The Massachusetts Rmv About A Homemade Frame. Any Help Will Be Welcomed

60 convert
01-01-2006, 12:25 PM
call and ask them also remeber when you start with a full custom that if laws change you may have to change your project o accomodate new laws as you can't be "grandfathered" in to the old laws


01-02-2006, 07:50 AM
Massachusetts, Oh Well. Your best bet is to go to some rod runs and talk to a variety of people, maybe even join a club. They will have their own success stories as well as horror stories.
Certifyable Plans, there really ain't no such animal. DMV RMV don't play that game. As far as Grandfather, well that applies more with an existing car or truck as opposed to a Home Made One Off Custom of your design.
The Laws are changing very quickly in this new century and many things are not being Grandfathered.
When dealing with the DMV have all of your reciepts. Now if your buildin a street rod and for example your buildin a 34 Ford, you can still buy a Title for such vehicle, but alas sometime in the near future, time goes quik, you won't be able to get a Title like that.
In less than a years time in Connecticut new laws were passed, NO Title, NO Registration. Massachusetts and CT are very similar. If this is a car of your own design, you might have to go to another state and play the game and then bring it in, but remember the NO Title deal, its comin to pass all over.
Sure there are many ways to get around things, but its gettin slimmer. If your ride is gonna be the new 20006 MetalMeet Sidewinder, forget the Title, there never was such an animal, no paper trail, nor manufacturer with a legitimate license, no MSO's nuthin. Be aware!!!
Now one issue that no one really looks at is emissions. Massachusetts has changed the whole emissions thing, no more seein a buddy for a sticker and slippin them a few bucks.
In CT you go to a registered station, the tester has to take an eye test to verify his being the tester. The vehicle goes on a dyno, they test the gas cap, check to see all emissions pieces are in place, there is a cat etc. then they run the test. Be advised that its all on video, you the owner can not be in the picture, all data is sent over the internet to a main computer and it says whether you pass or fail. Failure means you have to have a certified garage and mechanic do up to around $700 in repairs. If you do it, the money spent doesn't count. DMV will not sign off on it. Now its vague if you Fail twice. In some cases they pull your Registration right there and in others when it comes up for Renewal you can't renew it.
Street Rods normally have to meet only a few requirements for emissions, usually all you have to have is a PCV valve as most rods are pre 69. But a HomeBuilt can be caught in a trap. A 23 T Bucket can be a 23 T or it can be a 2006 23 T, then emisssions can be different. Also the safety rules can be diferent. Choice of engines can bear on this, yup you can build a car and have to have smog pumps, cats and all the other goodies.
I'm in the process of doin an S10 with a V8, you can get them thru, IF the original vehicle had a V6, if it had a 4 cyl, odds are it won't happen. Title is one of the issues and then emissions. Go down with a carburated motor and good luck. You have to have the cat and all the other stuff, better off learnin to use Fuel Injection.
You too will have to learn how to play the game.
In many ways though we don't like it its better to just buy something, not what one wants to hear but it becomes a reality.
I still modify MC frames and its rare now that anyone comes in and wants a custom built one. I can't supply an MSO, so how do ya get around it, either buy a new frame with papers or if ya have a bike with a Title etc, modify the frame from there, yup even a brand new frame from Denvers, Boureqet, Arlen Ness etc, buy one and then chop it up, its got paper work. Best deal around Paucho frames are cheap, made in Mexico with cheap labor so so ??? materials. But its got papers. Cars are a bit different.
I hope gave ya some food for thought, now you can go out on assignment and find out the laws and come back and report to us.
Another thing is most DMV's have a Web Site with a lot of info, enuff to get ya in trouble.
Good Luck


01-02-2006, 10:37 AM
OK. Looks like alot of trouble and hassle for nothing. how about buying a full frame car modify frame and building a body to match. any help with frame types would be much appreciated. leaning more toward two seater roadster that handles .

Wray Schelin
01-02-2006, 11:46 AM
OK. Looks like alot of trouble and hassle for nothing. how about buying a full frame car modify frame and building a body to match. any help with frame types would be much appreciated. leaning more toward two seater roadster that handles .

Hi Fred,

I would go to the Massachusetts RMV and talk to someone. You will need to thread your way through a lot of bureaucracy for sure, but you will get a definitive answer. Don't expect to get immeadiate results. If you are professional about it and bring professional quality plans you will be treated professionally. You might even find a car guy in the registry. Don't immediately be pessimistic and assume the worst. The only viewpoint that counts is always what the law says. If the laws are new and they are wrong they can be changed.

I think we should also ask Dick Bear how he plans to approach the same problem. I know quite a few people build Caterhams, Lotus 7s, and Locosts and register them . What do they say?

More than half the Hotrods today are kit cars assembled and then reigistered. What does Sema say? Have you read anything on the Sema site or asked a Sema representitive about registering a new shop built car?

I would say you have some homework ahead. Don't go negative and say someone is stopping you when the truth is probably different.

01-02-2006, 07:22 PM
Wray is Right, you have to do your homework. A couple of observations. I'll quote Wray "If you are professional about it and bring professional quality plans you will be treated professionally." Not necessarily so. There are many offices in MA, you may or may not get the right one. In CT there are only a few and one main one. They all are in one accord. I would believe that in MA they will be in one accord also.
Fact of the Matter is most States DMV's don't like Home builts whether it be a Kit or a Hot Rod. One has to understand why they are so hard, some its because the legislature, but mostly its a Safety issue. An example of sorts.
Joe Bloe wants to build a T Bucket, he goes out and buys a 110 Mig never welded before in his life, learns how to lay down a few beads, looks good but when he welds a frame, sure it doesn't fall appart, next he pops in a motor and drive train, things are sort of square and look good, should I mention he got his metal from the junk yard and home depot in the plumbing dept. He finds he can run copper tubing for brake lines with compression fittings. Fuel lines are just rubber hose with clamps. He sees in the magazines cars with slicks, figurin he'll build a rat rod of sorts. So he pops on a set of slicks. Legal ??? Safe??? You tell me they are out there. There are also guys out there that are well educated with hi power hot rods runnin Racing Slicks or other not DOT approved tires cuz they look kool. They also ride around with them with their wives and kids. Now you can see why DMV comes down hard on people and frowns on Kit cars, hot rods, homebuilts etc. If you go in with a decent looking car with all the paperwork in order and it is safe you will have a better time then our friend Joe Bloe. In some states particularly out west, Joe Bloe has no problem with his car, he also assigned hisself a vehicle number and made a tag out of aluminum roof flashing. Laugh if you must, but there are still a few good ole boy states that its legal. Dumb people, true story, a few years ago a couple of guys in Arkansas out shootin frogs, driving around in a rat rod, fuse blows, lights go out. Wise guy puts in a .22 in place of the fuse. Pop, one guy gets shot, maybe they were drinkin maybe not. We tend to believe that people in here are somewhat educated and intelligent.
Yep, Wray is right, don't be discouraged, sometimes its a tough row to hoe. I am sure there are some players in here that have dealt with the DMV of MA and they should put in some input instead of playin the lurker.
Kit Cars and many Hot Rods all have to do the Title deal. As I stated some cars you can buy a Title for, Kit cars many when you buy the Kit you get the MSO so you can apply for a Title.
Catherams, Lotus 7's and Locusts were mentioned. I have dealt with the Lotus Super 7's. Same deal you will get and MSO or Title.
Even if you started from scratch with nuthin, the Big Deal is save all of your paperwork and document everything, have all of this stuff in Order.
SEMA is a good site to look at and find out info, but as I stated earlier most states have a Website for their DMV and you can find out there some things if not all you need to know. Members of Car clubs all have had to go thru it and they know first hand what is goin on. Lots of rodders belong to clubs so they can do things as a group, plus not everyone is a welder, mechanic or whatever and its always good to have a helping hand.
SEMA was a good thing, still is, but in many instances it is catering more to the big time manufacturers. Money talks. I remember SEMA in the very beginning, it has changed much for the good of all, but in its infancy it was for setting Safety standards for Racing particularly Drag Racing. Now SFI does it.
A shop built car isn't really the same as a home built version of the same. There are many shops out there that cater to anyone with $$$ and there are many fly by nite opperations with fancy shops and many good ones that are hole in the wall types. Its let the buyer beware.
So don't be intimidated, you will have to do your homework. Laws can change while your in progress, so you really should have some form of deadline or target date, so ya don't get screwed. Some laws are unfair and sometimes things can be done about them, sometimes not. Your vote does count and seein who is votin for what keeps all of us ahead of the NIMBY's.
Again Good Luck in your pursuit of your Dream


Ernie Ferrucci
01-02-2006, 07:59 PM
Hi Fred

Here is the MA DMV web site: http://www.mass.gov/rmv/. Click on title & salvage, there is some info, Don't know if it will help, I didn't read it all.

01-03-2006, 07:27 AM
On a bit of a tangent here...

I live in CT, and am well aware of the PITA it can be for anything automotive in this state. CT has similar laws in effect for home-built trailers, basically stating if it doesn't have a title it needs to be assigned one at the main DMV office, with a thorough inspection and a slew of paperwork to accompany it.

I built a cousin of mine an ATV trailer last year (way overkill in terms of design and detail), went to the DMV website, and armed him with everything he needed to get it registered. Many parts were bought out of state, so he needed receipts so he could be charged CT sales tax for registering purposes. We needed to show that the axle, hubs, tires, etc were rated for the weight limit being applied for. We needed to show the size/thickness of the steel used via the receipts. Lighting requirements, etc. My cousin expected the worst, once the DMV officer showed up with his paperwork and a huge checklist of what needed to comply.

BUT, he simply walked around the trailer once, did NOT look at the inspection checklist paperwork he was holding, asked my cousin what weight he wanted it titled for, and then prompty affixed a temporary VIN number decal to the frame (owner's responsibility to stamp it), and sent him on his way. So yes, he spent 2 hours waiting in lines getting his ducks in a row, but he said he was out of the inspection lane in 5 minutes.

I suspect the reasoning behind this is I take pride in my work, and I made sure every bit of the trailer looked good, and is above required minimum specifications. So presentation is everything it seems, the inspector was not a 'hard ass' as expected.

Bob Legere

01-08-2006, 05:53 PM
I can help you with a frame design with the Mustang II frame and ladder bar rear. I have do a lot over the past few years and have not had any problems with them failing an inspection yet. In most cases they just require it to be able to pass your local safety inspection. If your state does not require a Safety inspection then just contact your local DMV and they will provide you with the information that will be required.
If you have a body with a VIN or a clear title already 90% of the time they don't eveny worry about anything else as long as it will pass a safety insepection.
Thats just been my experiance.
If I can help you any more just let me know.

01-08-2006, 06:21 PM
thanks for the info. emailed dmv was given a number to call. when I call will post some info.