The Law and the Hot Rodder

Just a new idea if you can add anything send to any comments are much appreciated good or bad.

SORN find out more (December 2003) 

The following is lifted from the DVLA leaflet INS156 "V5 logbook"

Apparently 1 in 5 used cars in Britain are sold without a logbook (also called V5 or registration document). The presence of a logbook is a good, legitimate indicator that a vehicle is not stolen.

To make it harder for thieves to disguise the identities of stolen vehicles the DVLA is to change the rules on applying for a tax disc without a license renewal reminder (form V11).To obtain a tax disc without a reminder you will need to provide your log book or the tear off slip from it.  

 From 1st February 2003 you will need a log book or reminder to obtain a tax disc from the post office. There is no mention in the leaflet of what to do if you have neither document.

From 7 April 2003 all cars that have been written off and/or scrapped due to accident damage, and are subsequently repaired, must undergo & pass a vehicle identity  check (VIC) before they can be returned to the road. The check will be carried out at the vehicle inspectorate to confirm the vehicle's identity but NOT it's roadworthiness.

A logbook will only be issued for such a car if it has passed the VIC.

Also, from 7 April 2003, where an owner decides to sell or dispose of a car with significant unrepaired accident damage, they will be under a new obligation to return the log book to the DVLA. The leaflet makes no mention of how they intend to enforce this.

From 1st January 2003 all number plate suppliers in England & Wales will be required by law to register with DVLA , otherwise they will be unable to trade.

If you want to buy number plates you will need to provide proof of your identity aswell as evidence that you are entitled to buy plates for that car (log book or license renewal form). The supplier will keep a record of all plates supplied.

At the bottom of the leaflet it says " As a general rule we recommend you do not buy a vehicle without a V5".

for further info visit  

A snippet from the 

Car cruisin’ is a term used to describe large groups of car enthusiasts who meet and drive in convoys to socialise and ‘show off’ their cars and sound systems. Reminiscent of Grease and the mods and rockers, car cruisin’ dates back to the 1960s when groups of youths would meet to drive around in convoys. The culture grew in the UK during the 1970s, with the establishment of cruiser groups devoted to different types of car such as hot rods or dragsters.

Mark Britt said: “Owners’ clubs did spring up but these proved too sedate for many people as they offered no real opportunity to show off. In general, cruisers want to demonstrate the capabilities of their cars as well as their appearance. The problem comes when there are large numbers of people gathered in retail parks and out-of-town shopping areas where the danger of public disturbance or injury is increased. The large crowds often lead to criminal damage offences, and retailers get extremely angry and want the police to do something about dispersing them so that genuine shoppers can be left alone.

“Many of the cars have been specially adapted and modified, which gives rise to a number of health and safety and insurance issues. When a car has been extensively modified, the insurance is invalidated which, in turn, means injury or damage may not be covered. Traffic problems increase to and from the event, and often such gatherings include a proportion of stolen cars and car parts.”

For a copy of Car Cruisin’ – A Police Guide contact the National Operations Faculty helpdesk on 01256 602777

Man see what we are up against!


A few items that an MOT station will check Full details or 

Doors (shaved handles)
Open and close. Latch securely in closed position. Front doors should open from inside and outside the vehicle. Rear doors may need to be opened to gain access to testable items.

Must Operate to give the driver a clear view of the road, must give clear view of both offside & nearside.  
wipers and washers this inspection applies to all vehicles except those with an opening screen with some other means of providing the driver with an adequate view method of inspection:
operate the washers and wipers and note swept area
examine condition and security if blades
check function of the wind screen washer
Reason for rejection (failure)
the windscreen washers do not provide enough liquid to clear the wind screen in conjunction with the wipers
that's how the manual puts it
 when I  had a 65 comet convertible with no factory washers I carried a washing up liquid bottle labeled as screen wash,

No mention of them being a requirement for an MOT but they are a Construction and Use requirement.

Seems their use is to stop rain and Mud flying up. So if you aint out in the rain or not on a muddy surface you may be able to argue that one, but may be an idea to have some clip on ones with you to show you have them to fit when it is Raining or Muddy eh!

If you have them in the boot make sure that they cover the full width [including sidewall] of the tyre and a good part of the circumference. Some time ago a known Rodder in a top Rod was stopped in his very tidy roadster and tried the "I took them of for the show and forgot to put them back on" ploy. Having been instructed to fit them there and then, he took them out of the boot at which point he was given a ticket. The reason given was that the fenders were so tiny there was no point in fitting them and he was "taking the p*ss".

Wheels and Tyres
Condition, security, tyre size/type and tread depth. Spare tyres are not inspected. Although spare wheels aren't MOT testable, if one is in a vehicle on the road, it has to be legal, if you get stopped & checked & you have a illegal spare you can be fined

Exhaust System
An Mot station will:
1.Examine the condition of the whole exhaust system, including the silencers and mountings, for security, deterioration and completeness.
2. With the engine running a. check the exhaust system for leaks
Note: A durable repair to an exhaust system which effectively prevents leaks is acceptable providing the system is structurally sound
b. assess subjectively the effectiveness of the silencer in reducing exhaust noise to a level considered to be average for the vehicle. it must not be louder than a similar vehicle Mind you, its a C&U violation.

a. A part of the system missing or excessively deteriorated
b. an exhaust system mounting missing, or In such condition that it does not fully support the exhaust system. Note: An alternative mounting device is acceptable providing the system is secure and the fixing is not likely to fail prematurely- . A major leak of exhaust gases from any part of the system Note: A minor exhaust leak from, for example, a connection joint or a pin hole, is not a Reason for Rejection

b. a silencer in such condition, or of such a type, that the noise emitted from the vehicle is clearly unreasonably above the level expected from a similar vehicle with a silencer in average condition.

Rear reflectors
There must be two reflectors fitted reasonably symmetrically, securely attached. Rear reflectors & any light may be obscured by up to 50%  

All, indicators can be incorporated with stop lights on vehicles used before Sept 1st 65,but they can't adversely affect the operation of any other lamp, so technically they should fail the test if the brake light flashes when you indicate, as it stops being a brake light .Most testers wont fail on  these but I know testers who have, any vehicle used on or after Sept 1st 65 will legally require amber lenses.

Windscreen windscreen material is a construction and use reg. The MOT only checks condition, it does not specify type. C&U only states ''safety glass
or shatterproof''. Use polycarbonate eg Lexan as it does not go cloudy with age as Perspex does. Also Perspex shatters! There are some very good Acrylic materials also, which are cheaper than polycarbonate and just as tough.

Weight + Brakes. Some of the guys have said they have had problems with the weights on there vehicles, u dont need a vehicle weight for MOT, if u cant find it on the computer or the brake test weight chart u then do a decelorometer (Tapley Meter) test (as u would for some 4x4s,other classics and imports),

Emissions  The test is carried out to which ever is the oldest, the vehicle or engine ie if u got a 79 Capri with a 68 mustang 289 fitted the test is visual (as the engine is from 1968)proof is normally needed though, if u have a 68 mustang with a 1999 mustang EFI motor in it u do the test as per the 68 mustang (visual again),

Do you own a filthy Rod?

A filthy car could drop you right in the dirt – to the tune of £1,000. The RAC is warning drivers to clean up their act if they want to avoid prosecution after its legal helpline was inundated with calls from motorists who had been charged by police. The advice comes after several motorists fell foul of new laws introduced last September which require people to keep their number plates clearly visible. A spokesman for the motoring group said: "As the number of speed cameras increases on Britain's roads, the police are using the regulations to ensure that number plates can be read by Gatsos." Dirty and unreadable plates have always been illegal, but the fine of up to £1,000 was brought in following the introduction of the new laws. Drivers can also be prosecuted if their car's filth obscures their own vision. (Nicked from Auto Express)

Vehicle Identification at Mot time update

The government has announced its anti car crime initiative. 2 parts have already been brought in ,having to produce a myriad of documents to get plates made. The other is teams of inspectors that ensure  written off vehicle are inspected to ensure they are not using stolen parts. The governments intention is that EVERY vehicle on the road will undergo an identity check to find all the ringed cars out there. The easiest way of achieving this is at MOT time. The proposal is that you will have to produce your V5 and that the vehicle before them must match the description including colour, vin/chassis and engine numbers.
Now if you have a 1930s Austin with matching numbers it shouldn't create problems. If however you have a 1923 Model T and the V5 says 1963 Ford Cortina  or  car with Ford badges all over it and the logbook says Wolseley then I think this may cause alarm bells to ring.
The safest ,other than an SVA d vehicle would be a general Ford 2 axle rigid logbook of the correct period for your car. You should bear in mind that prior to SVA  all vehicles that required logbook details changing ie to sports /tourer / coupe etc were inspected by the local DRO and it appears that pre computer these detail changes are only noted in your V5 and not elsewhere. The DVLA have also told me that the only details they hold on record ,reference vehicle identity ,are those that are shown on your V5.Makes me wonder how they trace the owner of a white 2 axle rigid Ford involved in a hit and run though?
I m not trying to panic people with this talk of SVA. However it WILL become a necessary evil as other doors are closed to us. If you are in a long term project its worth considering those SVA items that require major re engineering's o you don't have to do it later. In all honesty the bulk of stuff that they ask for on an SVA make sense and ,for your own safety, you should be fitting them. With careful selection of components its possible to do it in such a way that it wouldn't detract from the style of most vehicles.

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