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Big truck hits the streets

     
2:11 am on Sep 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

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11:18 pm on Sept 21, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I didn't mean to jump in on this one, but couldn't resist adding two known facts:

First, the world's oil supply isn't going anywhere soon. Contrary to popular beliefs, there are places where oil is being produced under completely natural conditions (without human intervention) in enormous quantities. In fact I seem to remember one source claiming that new oil is being created faster than existing supply is being used. (Don't ask me the source; couldn't remember it if I tried but I deemed it reliable. Either trust me or discount this statement accordingly.)

Second, the air we breathe today is cleaner than it was in the 1970's. This is a statistical fact, regardless of the fact that there are more people, driving more cars for longer distances, and more factories and such to meet the demand for higher levels of production.

From an environmental perspective, I see no reason not to drive a big truck like that.

Personally, I'd prefer one of those renovated tanks that gets up to about 65 MPH but only 8 miles per gallon . . . how cool though . . . turret still intact and everything!

2:51 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Oil is being produced, that is true. But at nowhere near the speed it is being consumed.

And about the air. That depends on where you are. This is not true in Mexico site, or many other cities. And even if it is cleaner, we do have a problem with the destruction of the ozone. I am not saying big trucks don't have their place, but lets not paint it pink either.

7:56 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Wow, great foo thread! I have to chime in on the "feeling safe(er) in my big huge truck" thing. My problem is this: I don't feel safe driving on the freeway sometimes because of people who are driving these giant, huge trucks.

1) In traffic, I cannot see what is happening in front of me when I'm behind a truck. Important things such as the brake lights of other vehicles.

2) In the winter, when there's snow and ice on the freeway, many truck/SUV drivers pose a serious threat me. They drive way too fast for the conditions. Even though they may have 4-wheel drive, the majority of the vehicles on the road do not.

I think it's great if you feel safer in your huge trucks/SUVs. Just keep an eye out for us 'little guys', ok? : -)

9:13 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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mona, I DO watch out for you guys in your little cars. Which is why I'm alive today. I wound up in a ditch out on the highway a year ago, because my truck is built to take that sort of stuff and I wasn't afraid to go there. I was in the ditch so the guy didn't hit ME headon on a blind hill - he was driving a Mazda sedan, and the woman behind me he DID headon died, as did he - she was driving something a bit larger than his, maybe a mid-size Chevy, wasn't much of it left. I spent some nasty days in court as his family attempted to make me out the bad guy (what, I should have LET HIM HIT ME? You don't really want to know my exact words about that), they wanted people to say I was in HIS lane (I wasn't, not even close, and thankfully there were about 30 witnesses in my favor).

So sorry, guys, I AM safer in my truck when some idiot in a small car doesn't have the brains mom nature gave an amoeba. But I DO watch out for y'all - I do my level best to get out of your way because you know what? I don't have to drive 90 mph to prove anything....

That and the guy looking for cougar tracks were my two really closest calls in 4+ years of driving 80 miles a day, so I guess that's not too bad a percentage. However, I can do quite well without that sort of stress on my body and vehicle, and I've never been interested in adrenaline highs....

[This is not to be taken to mean that I think every person in the world who drives a small car is an idiot - BUT we have way more than our fair share right around here, which is of course where I drive, right?]

9:52 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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This is not to be taken to mean that I think every person in the world who drives a small car is an idiot - BUT we have way more than our fair share right around here, which is of course where I drive, right?

Correct. Just as I know that most truck/SUV drivers aren't idiots. That sounds like a nasty incident, svkaryl! So glad that you came out of it OK. And thanks for lookin' out for us little guys:)
9:52 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I drove past a fatal accident today, about an hour after it happened. It was an SUV, but I'm quite sure that wasn't the whole story. The other vehicle was a squad car. SUVs may not be as safe as cars, but there are a multitude of reasons why accidents happen; drunk driving, people that don't give it their full attention, poor vehicle upkeep, driving too fast for conditions, etc.
9:58 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"....don't give it their full attention...."

If there's ONE THING I would like the laws changed to address in this country (um, that's the US - sorry!) it would be to do as Germany has done: NO CELL PHONE USE WITHOUT A CRADLE!

I cringe when I see every other vehicle being driven at 75 mph or so by a person with a cellphone glued to hisser ear, steering with a finger or a knee, gesticulating wildly with hands.... and then there's the ones who eat Big Macs while doing same....

[*sigh* off topic again, sorry!]

10:33 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Heh ;-)

This is 'Foo', so I'm going to assume that a few tangents are permissible...

I was driving behind another vehicle one day when a taxi did a very dangerous (and quick) u-turn right in front of her, but accelerated fast enough that she didn't hit him. If you'd seen it, you might have expected her to hit the brakes or possibly swerve, but do you know what she did instead?

She lifted her hands off the wheel and covered her face.

-B

11:04 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Ugh, bedlam, that's CRAZY! Oy. Well, I'm glad she didn't involve you in a nasty one!

Speaking of cabs, those of you headed to Vegas, AVOID THE TAXIS at all costs. Believe me....

11:09 pm on Sept 22, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Watch out for the limousines too. I think they're operated by taxi drivers in disguise. They're not fooling me.
12:34 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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To back up a bit....

mona, one other point I keep forgetting to mention (y'know, when you start thinking back over the "scaries", you tend to get scatterbrained....): you are right to be afraid of people in trucks with 4wd on ice (snow's not such a biggie, but snow OVER ice - it's like grease on a mirror....); anyway, I KNOW idiots think they're invincible in a 4wd, but I have NEWS FOR THEM - it AIN'T SO. Anything but.

On ice, in 4-high, at anything over 20-25 mph, you are an accident waiting to happen. All 4-high does is give you a totally false sense of security. In 4-low, you really ARE safer, because you can't go very fast in low gears. Believe me, I TOO pull over and shut it down when the idiots fly by me around here in the winter!

The other problem with 90% of the larger 4wd vehicles around here is that they're automatics, which is just senseless, but that's another whole thing; as is the prevalence in this area of things like the "mini-SUVs" which don't accomplish any of the logicals as to either size, fuel mileage, OR 4-wd usefulness!

12:45 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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When there's ice and snow about, I just laugh at how bad the 4x4 monsters handle around me - and as you said, with the automatic box they must be a real nightmare.

My trusty front-wheel drive, manual gearbox Echo has never got stuck, never missed a corner, and the usual oversteer/understeer on bends is ridiculously easy to control. There's absolutely no doubt that standard front-wheel drive sedans with a manual box are by far the best for winter driving, and as the winter snow lasts for 6 to 7 months here, it's a pretty important factor!

(Automatics are for wimps, anyway!)

1:25 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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(Automatics are for wimps, anyway!)

Um. Yup.

1:41 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>>Automatics are for wimps, anyway

I've driven standards and automatics. I prefer standards, but I think the automatics are a little better when driving with a cheeseburger in one hand and a cell phone in the other. Not.

2:04 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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SlowMove: got me with a mouthful of wine which is now on my keyboard! *laughing*

Last automatic I owned (personally, not one my husband bought, and not including my dad's antique Buick wagon which we inherited by default) was in - um - 1972? Maybe? Was a SERIOUSLY antique Ford Fairlane from about 1968. Ran great, sucked gas the way a hyperventilator sucks air....

I did enjoy the 1987 Buick Electra T-Type we bought from my brother in 1990, though. For an automatic, it was a pretty decent drive.... we traded it in with our 1986 Ford F250 on this truck in 1994 - the Buick had 135k miles on it, the F250 had 165k miles on it, the current F250 diesel listed at 32.5k and they gave us 13k for the 2 vehicles in trade....

We take care of our stuff. Even the antique stuff....

2:09 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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My trusty front-wheel drive, manual gearbox Echo has never got stuck, never missed a corner, and the usual oversteer/understeer on bends is ridiculously easy to control.

With FWD you should have NO oversteer. Anyone who can't control understeer should use a camel. :)

BTW encyclo, I'm thinking of getting a car that gets 28 mpg highway that still has acceptable passing power for two-lane roads. Whaddya think?

2:15 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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*snicker* Camels don't do well in the snow, lawman....

[and btw, thanks for letting this thread go to these lengths. It's been fun and instructive.]

2:38 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I prefer standards, but I think the automatics are a little better when driving with a cheeseburger in one hand and a cell phone in the other.

Hehehe..that is so true, SlowMove. I just went bought a standard two weeks ago (Yea!) and I haven't driven one in 6 years. One of the first things I realized was how much harder it is to drive with phone in hand while looking for a CD while shifting..doh! I guess I shouldn't be complaining about those truck drivers anymore! However, I only do this while driving the speed limit in perfect weather conditions : - )
9:50 am on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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SlowMove: got me with a mouthful of wine which is now on my keyboard! *laughing*

Vkaryl, it's Known as *snarfing*.... ever read the smelly feet thread? ;)

Automatics are for wimps

Considered a luxury here. Almost all new cars come with 'stick' as standard.

<added>
Vkaryl this thread [webmasterworld.com] might help
</added>

12:36 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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With FWD you should have NO oversteer

You're not trying hard enough ;)

12:51 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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You're not trying hard enough

My car is RWD. It doesn't take much. If you're driving an Echo hard enough to make it swap ends, you probably need to be driving one of these [2sportscars.com]. :)

1:54 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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> With FWD you should have NO oversteer. Anyone who can't control understeer should use a camel.

A wise person once taught me about oversteer/understeer. He said: "Oversteer is when the back of the car hits the tree. Understeer is when the front of the car hits the tree."

Makes me giggle every time I think about it.

Of course, for some of us, the whole snow point is moot. No snow in Austin - except a few inches that melts nearly instantaneously about once every 10 years.

3:15 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Most stable thing I ever drove in the snow was [davepics.com...]
Mine was red ...could do 125 mph forwards or backwards..
(sorry about the messy link ..still cant get them right)
3:40 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Mine was red ...could do 125 mph forwards or backwards.

That was without the wings I take it?

Lol

Syzygy

6:20 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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These little cars really could do very fast speeds ...engine by sachs ..various sizes from 200cc upwars ..most had 400 or 600 cc ( mine had 600 cc "tuned" )..steering was by an aircraft style "inverted" cow horn affair ..gear changing via acable link at the side of the cockpit ..one pull for 1st ..another for 2nd another for 3rd ...

Reverse was obtained by pushing the ignition key slightly further in before turning it ( having previously stopped the engine ) ..the engine then fired up ..but turning over the other way ( like counterclockwise instead of clockwise ) ..hence all gears usuable in reverse direction and full speed possible ...

They made a 4 wheeler ( not 4x4 ) ...engine of all models is in the back ..drive to either the single or double rear wheel ..these 4 wheelers were raced all over Germany but particularly at the Nuremburg "ring"...

Due to the direct steering ( yep ..you turn the "stick" and the car goes exactly that way ..just like a "go-kart" ) they are incredebly responsive ..can do very nearly 90 degree turns at full speed and because the centre of gravity is so low they are almost impossible to "flip" ..so you corner as fast as your nerves can stand!

Fuel consumption was minimal ( and as I had mine in the days before the 70's fuel "hike" I never counted ...remember even in Britain gas was 2 and sixpence a gallon ...us oldies ..huh )...

I had two truck batteries under the seat ( seating is one behind the other ..like in the plane from whre they used the "spare" parts ..mine had a "bubble" plexi cockpit .just like in the planes ME 109 and ME110 ) ..this made the center of gravity even better ..plus I go a little over 100 kgs ..actually about 240lbs and you do sit with only 6 inches and a little bit of foam and steel sheet between yer bum and the bitumen ...( also at 6'4" it's a squeeze to get into most cars any way ..so you get used to it .."Yogic-driving" that is )...

Amazing vehicle ..now very very sought after ...

for vkaryl ...( at the same time I had a 280Z "super samuri" ..one of the few real fast cars that big people can stretch their legs in ...and they were tuned like Kawasaki do racebikes ..bought mine from a drag racer who had spent most of his free time playing with the engine ..had "NOX" ...hee hee ..just like MadMax...everyone should "do nox" in a dragster..just the once at least )..

now I drive ( live in the country ..how many of us here do I wonder? )..plus it's my "rolling billboard" ) a 3.5 ton panel truck ...six wheeler trannie to the Brits..or bikes ...or "rollerblades" ..or bycycle ..or my doc martens ..some of which are more eco friendly than others ..( remember right back at the beginning of this thread I said "bio diesel"...just before the thread went a bit "wiggy" for a while )...

as previously touched upon ..planes are so much more worse for the environment than any truck etc that it pales into insignificance ..( did I mention I like skydiving )...

Oh yeah ...the use of mobile phones wether or not in cradles /hands free etc by drivers should be punishable by the most severe ways ( deliberate didn"t use the "d" word ..but he has scythe n' cloak with hood )..they cause total mayhem ..snowy days or sunny days ..

8:01 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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TopFive has a new list: The Top 16 Signs Your Truck Is TOO DAMN BIG (Part I) [topfive.com], inspired by the truck in question.

12> The Saudi government sends you a card on your birthday, and your last name's not Bush.
8:08 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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LMAO, Leosghost! That is the most ridiculas looking yet adorable car I've ever seen. I want one.
10:51 pm on Sept 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Leosghost, reminds me of the 1958 English Ford my first husband drove (this was in 1967). Had to double-clutch the sucker to get it into ANY gear.... was red (EXTREMELY oxidized red) instead of spiffy yellow....
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