Random Thoughts... [Automotive Edition]

Spectre

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Spectre: uphill start on a snowy/icy road; heavy RWD vs light FWD (or just RWD vs. FWD) with no electronic aids on either.

I can't even count the number of times I saw a RWD car (mostly BMWs and Infiniti G35s) fishtail (and fail to go forward) on a snowy uphill start while I started just fine in my FWD econobox. ;)
And I can't count the number of times I've had a Jag or even my old 300ZX calmly climbing said type icy hills from a standing start in winter (yes, winter comes to visit Dallas and brings lots of ice, plus I go visit winter in Utah occasionally) while little and not-so-little FWD econoboxes sit and spun their wheels fruitlessly.

Given the same tires, the car with more weight over the drive axles will perform better. But in a contest between, say, a Corolla (1633lbs over the drive axles) and a 996 (1920), I'm pretty sure the Corolla isn't going to win that icy uphill climb. Also, a G35 isn't exactly what I'd call 'heavy' at 3400lbs. Not when the lightest car I currently own started out life at 4133lbs and the other actual car weighed in at 4440. (Hello, British battlecruisers.) And, of course, my truck is about 7000.
 
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CAPT_Howdy

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I always thought that - given the right tires and a skilled right foot - a RWD car might do better going uphill in icy conditions than a FWD car. The weight transfer would help the RWD car, and hurt the FWD one.

And Spectre you had a Sterling 825i? You have my most sincere condolences. That said, I wouldn't mind having a Rover 800 coupe to look at - which is about all that it would be good for.

And I remember a supervisor at a job I had in the early 90s driving a white Peugeot 405mi16. Looked kind of like the car from the "Taxi" films. I'm sure it's solidly in the "dead" category now, though.
 

Spectre

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I always thought that - given the right tires and a skilled right foot - a RWD car might do better going uphill in icy conditions than a FWD car. The weight transfer would help the RWD car, and hurt the FWD one.

And Spectre you had a Sterling 825i? You have my most sincere condolences. That said, I wouldn't mind having a Rover 800 coupe to look at - which is about all that it would be good for.

And I remember a supervisor at a job I had in the early 90s driving a white Peugeot 405mi16. Looked kind of like the car from the "Taxi" films. I'm sure it's solidly in the "dead" category now, though.
Not that it made any difference, but mine was an 827SL as I recall. And yes, they were kind of neat to look at - but as you noted, you wouldn't actually be able to drive one.

Edit: Also, I'm getting really, really good at pulling the steering column out of this truck...
 
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gaasc

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I'm not so sure I'm feeling this plan

IIRC, more than a few of the aftermarket bumpers out there were compatible across makes because of the similar sizes of the Japanese makes. Might want to start taking some measurements and seeing what might fit.
I've seen some of the ones available, most of them look like the ones on the D21's you posted, and Personally I hate them. Unfortunately when we do replace them (we estimate 1 other rear-ending until the bumper actually touches the body) it'll have another one of this.
 

Spectre

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On purpose, or is it Typical Ford Build Quality striking again?
Remember, this is a "Ford, you BONEHEADS" era truck, so it wasn't all that great to begin with. The current problem is that the stupid nylon push/pull gear rack that runs between the ignition key lock cylinder on the column and the actual ignition switch at the base of the column has failed such that you can start the truck but you can't stop it. $20 part, $700 labor charge at one local stealership. $100 or less if I pull the column and take it to a column repair shop.

This is the part that's failed:


More info on the problem here: http://en.allexperts.com/q/Steering-Column-Repair-2047/2010/10/ignition-stuck-position.htm

Fortunately, it seems they eliminated this problem with later cars, but for those of us with bonehead-era Fords, well... we're still wondering who thought nylon was a good idea in a high stress high use area.
 

Der Stig

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One final point about the ice driving issue, I drove my open-diff, RWD BMW with summer tires in and to Dallas January 2011 when idiots were crashing all over the place. Yeah, I was fine.
 

Aston Martin

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Theres alot of 'Hull' numberplates, today I saw 'HU11 BOS' which as registration plates go, it was almost acceptable. Was the car an XJR? or a Maybach 62?
No, it was a Peugeot Partner with windows... for the Americans, think Kangoo but more bland.
 

GM_IV

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Spectre: uphill start on a snowy/icy road; heavy RWD vs light FWD (or just RWD vs. FWD) with no electronic aids on either.

I can't even count the number of times I saw a RWD car (mostly BMWs and Infiniti G35s) fishtail (and fail to go forward) on a snowy uphill start while I started just fine in my FWD econobox. ;)
I'm with Spectre on this one. I've never had hill troubles with my elderly RWD Cressida I even left some SUV/CUVs spinning away(most people here think AWDs don't need winter tires). The FWD econoboxes I drive at work...different story, I had a Hyundai Accent that couldn't get up someone's driveway on a non-icy day. The BMW, Mercedes Benz, Chargers and 300s on the other hand, none of them were difficult to drive in Toronto winters, apart from the weak 2.7L V6 Chargers...they're just way too slow and weak.
 

Labcoatguy

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we're still wondering who thought nylon was a good idea in a high stress high use area.
IIRC Nissan used nylon in its window regulators for early 90s Maximas, one of the few weak spots that those cars had. So Ford probably got that engineer along with the Nissan Quest/Mercury Villager deal.
I'm with Spectre on this one. I've never had hill troubles with my elderly RWD Cressida I even left some SUV/CUVs spinning away(most people here think AWDs don't need winter tires). The FWD econoboxes I drive at work...different story, I had a Hyundai Accent that couldn't get up someone's driveway on a non-icy day. The BMW, Mercedes Benz, Chargers and 300s on the other hand, none of them were difficult to drive in Toronto winters, apart from the weak 2.7L V6 Chargers...they're just way too slow and weak.
Now imagine if you could combine the weight transfer advantages of RWD with a layout that puts even more mass on the rear tires. :mrgreen:
 

Spectre

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IIRC Nissan used nylon in its window regulators for early 90s Maximas, one of the few weak spots that those cars had. So Ford probably got that engineer along with the Nissan Quest/Mercury Villager deal.
Nah, that part dates back to the 1980s, well before the Nissan joint venture. Sadly.

Besides which, Ford fell prey to the Detroit fad for nylon even earlier - some of their 70s and 80s 302s used nylon timing gears. Not nylon coated. Made out of nylon. GM and Chrysler did as well for some of their engines. Yes, it was a horribad idea.

Chrysler went a step further and used a nylon track for their windows, powered and manual. It looked like this.



And it wasn't at all unheard of for a Chrysler product to suddenly drop all of its windows within minutes of each other once the nylon started getting old - and you couldn't roll them back up until you replaced the track.

Now imagine if you could combine the weight transfer advantages of RWD with a layout that puts even more mass on the rear tires. :mrgreen:
What, my Ford F350 with 5000lbs of sand in the back? :p
 
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EyeMWing

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Remember, this is a "Ford, you BONEHEADS" era truck, so it wasn't all that great to begin with. The current problem is that the stupid nylon push/pull gear rack that runs between the ignition key lock cylinder on the column and the actual ignition switch at the base of the column has failed such that you can start the truck but you can't stop it. $20 part, $700 labor charge at one local stealership. $100 or less if I pull the column and take it to a column repair shop.

This is the part that's failed:


More info on the problem here: http://en.allexperts.com/q/Steering-Column-Repair-2047/2010/10/ignition-stuck-position.htm

Fortunately, it seems they eliminated this problem with later cars, but for those of us with bonehead-era Fords, well... we're still wondering who thought nylon was a good idea in a high stress high use area.
If you're aware of anywhere that has a good teardown instruction for that steering column, I'd find it quite handy - I need to delete the stupid nylon actuator from the racecar, because that's the only way I can work out to disable the column lock permanently and reliably. Mitchell has an exploded diagram (on which all parts are so tiny as to be useless), but no teardown instructions
 

Labcoatguy

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What, my Ford F350 with 5000lbs of sand in the back? :p
I was thinking of something with an entire drivetrain over the rear wheels. This is where I wait for you to post a picture of your truck with an engine and transmission in the bed. :p
 

Spectre

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I was thinking of something with an entire drivetrain over the rear wheels. This is where I wait for you to post a picture of your truck with an engine and transmission in the bed. :p
I shall not disappoint. :mrgreen:

Not my truck, and it's a repost, but...


Not a repost but still not my truck:


See, there's an engine, a transmission and a bunch of other stuff in the bed. :D
 
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Matt2000

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I chuckled at the first pic with the Smart but nothing prepared me for the second picture. :rofl:

Found out yesterday that the bulbs for the SRS light in the Discovery aren't available to buy separately, I have to buy the whole PCB. Then I have to work out why the lights don't go out. :(

I'm tempted to get someone to just remove the whole system, but I don't even know if that can pass an MOT. I'd have to rely on the fact that there's no way of knowing from the VIN if a particular Disco had airbags or not.
 

Spectre

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I chuckled at the first pic with the Smart but nothing prepared me for the second picture. :rofl:

Found out yesterday that the bulbs for the SRS light in the Discovery aren't available to buy separately, I have to buy the whole PCB. Then I have to work out why the lights don't go out. :(

I'm tempted to get someone to just remove the whole system, but I don't even know if that can pass an MOT. I'd have to rely on the fact that there's no way of knowing from the VIN if a particular Disco had airbags or not.
Another issue is that the airbag housings are structural for the interior panels to at least some degree and you'd have to come up with something to replace them or at least fill the holes.
 

Matt2000

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Another issue is that the airbag housings are structural for the interior panels to at least some degree and you'd have to come up with something to replace them or at least fill the holes.
The standard Discovery grab handle will fit in place of the passenger airbag, with only a small gap to fill where the dashboard is cut out to fit it. It's also old enough to not have any other airbags.
 
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