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Old 06-15-2007, 05:23 PM   #21
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I wonder if Michigan is highly unusual, because of the automotive industry. Like, highest percentage of big vehicles of all the states because the industry has convinced everyone it's good for the economy and everyone's jobs. And the strictest "safety" regulations that really don't add to safety but do push people into getting service too often and trading in sooner than they would otherwise.

On the power steering and brakes, what happens if you have a mechanical problem and your engine quits while you're on the highway? If the vehicle is now uncontrollable because it can't be steered, shouldn't that model be banned from the highways? Since 9/11, "safety" has been the ultimate cop out to justify anything.
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Old 06-15-2007, 05:39 PM   #22
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I read that ATA article too. If truckers don't want to be tailgated, they shouldn't tailgate us car drivers!!! I've driven through the "mountains" in PA and TN a few times. It's a terrifying experience to be driving 80+ just to keep pace, and see a semi truck grill in the rearview mirror. What a minute... that was the last time I was on the freeway in un-mountainous Michigan.

Do unto others as you would have done unto you.
I agree, however we've all driven too close to them, followed some idiot that just hangs around the side of them and we've all cut (without realizing it) too close in front of them. If you've ever been in a large truck, someone just popping in front of you to get off at an exit is nothing short of nerve wracking.

That said, if you let them know you're there by appearing in the side mirrors and staying there, do a good 20 second turn signal cycle before changing lanes in front of them and otherwise giving them a wide berth, you will not have a problem.

One thing that I've thought of is putting a hyper-miler sign in the back window so semi drivers know what you're up to. Honestly, this helps a lot.

You can also get a CB and let them know that you're covering their back door. A little communication goes a long way.

Well, off to posting my latest video....
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Old 06-15-2007, 06:44 PM   #23
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bzipitidoo -

Quote:
Originally Posted by bzipitidoo View Post
I wonder if Michigan is highly unusual, because of the automotive industry. Like, highest percentage of big vehicles of all the states because the industry has convinced everyone it's good for the economy and everyone's jobs. And the strictest "safety" regulations that really don't add to safety but do push people into getting service too often and trading in sooner than they would otherwise.

On the power steering and brakes, what happens if you have a mechanical problem and your engine quits while you're on the highway? If the vehicle is now uncontrollable because it can't be steered, shouldn't that model be banned from the highways? Since 9/11, "safety" has been the ultimate cop out to justify anything.
That's another reason why I hate power steering in general, but I know you need it in the big cars. I don't know what to say about the brakes other than adding another vacuum/pressure bottle gizmo to the brakes so that you can have the power in the brakes for a longer period of time.

My Dad had a late 1980's Ford Escort sport model, and it had the infamous "cooking CPU". They put the CPU too close to something hot in the engine bay and it would break down. Maybe 3 or 4 times my Dad was caught with a dead car, once on the freeway. They had a recall to fix it, but he wouldn't go in to fix it. He probably had that fixed 3 or 4 times on his own dime. Now it is happily gone!

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Old 06-15-2007, 06:58 PM   #24
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On the power steering and brakes, what happens if you have a mechanical problem and your engine quits while you're on the highway? If the vehicle is now uncontrollable because it can't be steered, shouldn't that model be banned from the highways? Since 9/11, "safety" has been the ultimate cop out to justify anything.
(don't take this personal, just a general comment)

Oh please. I drive all the time with the clutch in and have no problems. My PS works fine as well as my PB. Maybe having a semi-hemi has an effect, but I doubt it.

Look at it this way; if it was so bad, parking lots would be hell in idle and your vehicle does not idle when you pop it into neutral. The computer will keep the thing up around 1k. I doubt that Dodge is the only manufacturer that does that.
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Old 06-15-2007, 08:03 PM   #25
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In my opinion you do not need power steering in big cars, you might need a larger than average steering wheel however. I drive a 2 ton car with manual steering, doesn't bother me a bit. Especially on the highway, I can drive with one finger once moving.
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Old 06-15-2007, 08:22 PM   #26
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I wonder if Michigan is highly unusual, because of the automotive industry. Like, highest percentage of big vehicles of all the states because the industry has convinced everyone it's good for the economy and everyone's jobs.
For a state where everybody is complaining about the economy going down the crapper, everybody seems have a new car. What's up with that? My opinion is that the deep discounts for employees, not to mention new company cars every year for many, mean that the road is always full of new American cars.

Spend some time in Utah, though, if you want to see a high concentration of oversized battle cruisers. Larry H. Miller Truckland in Salt Lake City, UT is one of the biggest truck dealers in the US. http://www.utahforddeal.com/

The thing that blows my mind, is that automakers claim that Americans demand bigger vehicles. I don't buy that, no pun intended. From what I hear, profit margins are higher on bigger vehicles. The compact car market is much more competitive, and my opinion is that US automakers can't compete there, at least well enough to make a buck.

Just my $.02.

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Old 06-15-2007, 09:03 PM   #27
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The thing that blows my mind, is that automakers claim that Americans demand bigger vehicles. I don't buy that, no pun intended. From what I hear, profit margins are higher on bigger vehicles. The compact car market is much more competitive, and my opinion is that US automakers can't compete there, at least well enough to make a buck.

Just my $.02.

m
50% of the vehicles on the road are light trucks. Take a look around on your morning commute that ought to tell you what the consumer wants. I'm afraid that we here are but a very very small minority.
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