Blood Sweat Tears and Grease > Legal & Regulatory


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david bluetile:
well ive just started getting into all this stuff and have probably made my first mistake. i bought a bike with no title. the fella i bought it from is being as helpful as possible but he can only do so much other than give me my money back and i would rather work this out. i figured i would start a thread here so i can kind of lay the process ive been through so far for anyone else who may have the same problem.

i dont think its going to be that big of a deal. i kind of abandoned ship but ill get to that in a bit.

so i went to the DMV and the richland county tax office to see what i needed to do to get a title for a bike that i didnt have the title for. of course there is a title out there some where but hell if i can get my hands on it. both places said i needed a bill of sale or a title to get a new title. so i went back to the guy i bought it from and got a hand written bill of sale. that didnt work but the lady gave me a legal bill of sale for us to fill out. i took that to the guy i bought the bike from and it sort of worked.... not really... the county let me pay taxes on the vehicle but they did not let me title the vehicle just because i had a tax receipt in my name. lesson learned.

you hear everyone say you can just get a salvage title. you can not. you need a titled frame to get a salvage title.

so myself and hank (the fella i bought the bike from) got together and started trying to track down the guy that he bought the bike from so we can get the title. he bought it off of ebay from a guy in wisconsin 5 years ago. hank contacted ebay and they did in fact have contact information from the guy in wisconsin. well the fella in wisconsin also never got a title and the guy he got it from died in a snow mobile accident.

so the south carolina dept of motor vehicles is not being very helpful and will not issue a title even though the bike has not been tagged as stolen and has not been on the road in close to 20 years. i guess they are just doing their job and protecting people from having their stuff stolen and flipped by someone who has been sitting on it for as many years.

the lady at the DMV said i could apply for a homemade vehicle title but it would be a mighty healthy process. i would need pictures of all the parts i used to make the bike and receipts as proof of purchase of said parts. well the further i dipped into that the more red tape i ran into. i will still need a title for the frame... which i do not have. scratch that idea.

while on the the scdmv site i noticed there was a section for an abandoned vehicle title. so say you bought a farm and there was an old junker somewhere lost in the woods on your new property you could some how apply for an abandoned vehicle title. however.... im in the dmv system now as trying to title a bike with no title so when i approached the dmv with this abandoned title option i was quickly shot down because im in the records with a whole different story. because of this i was unable to delve any further down the abandoned vehicle title road but it is interesting and if anyone else knows what thats all about id like to hear.

so that leads me to where i am now. kind of abandoning ship and moving onto getting a new title.

i went to a local bike shop called D&D motor sports and they suggested i used a service called broadway title service. i didnt know these places existed but apparently you can go this route. instead i got some info from a fellow DTT member and contacted a place called Detroit Vintage Cycles.
they have a title service and it seems a little more low key than actually going through a title service business. it just seems more personal and one on one. i like that.

so i contacted those guys at this link
and ill keep you posted as to how this goes.

anyone else in SC had similar troubles? what did you do?

white orbs:
In NC you just get a bonded title. Easy enough , ask at the dmv for application to apply for bonded title. call insurance companies locally and ask about surity or indemnity bonds. Post you bond and go get your title. But thats in nc though. cost about 150$ all in all.

It seems like you're making a lot out of this. Just start asking around the DMV about a bonded title. It's way easier than researching multiple owners through ebay.

My bonded title cost something like $150 out the door, and I'd gladly pay that over what you're trying to do.


I am facing the same problem in charleston SC as well, from what I hear you can't get a bonded title either without having a buisness license to a shop, basically saying you did work to the bike and have a lean against it, if i'm wrong someone let me know. Any extra info on this prob would be Awsome

I'm going to be heading down to the DMV in charleston today to see if I can get thsi sorted out with my bike, I seem to have a pretty good track record of getting what I want at the dmv so we'll see what happens.


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