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NathanAllan
May 24th, 2005, 07:59 PM
I had to vent somewhere. I am seeing ads on TV about these new cars getting 38 miles per gallon and this is the best that they can do? I had a 1977 Mustang (yes, the Pinto based one) and I got that kind of mileage. It wasn't supposed to get that good of mileage, though. What I did was:

1. Add a header to its 4-cyl engine with a as straight as possible 2" pipe,
2. Put a Mallory SuperCoil on the ignition system with copper core wires,
3. Put a cheap-o TurboII muffler on my now near-straight pipe,
4. Block the smog pump,
5. Put in the hot-burning and high temp splitfire spark plug,
6. Ran an open air filter.

So I was basically tweaking my system to run better. This kind of thing doesn't really work on newer cars like my Cavalier, but I can still get a header and better exhaust, which I plan on doing, and get the high quality wires that have copper cores. Better spark, better mileage. And they make a ram air for it, too. Better mileage from less restriction of airflow. Anyway, most cars have tweaks in them that make them run better. Since I was doing all of my own work it was easy for me but I understand that if you had someone do all this it would likely cost a bundle.

Every time I see those commercials I remember my Mustang. And then most likely I go into a tirade about it to anyone who'll listen, heh heh.

Nathan

NathanAllan
May 24th, 2005, 08:01 PM
forgot to add, since I had all that other stuff and had my head buried in it for such a long time, I accidentally left the catalytic converter off and passed emissions anyway. I guess it was the spark plugs.

carlsson
May 24th, 2005, 11:49 PM
And those modifications didn't harm the engine or its life cycle? Maybe car manufacturers are lobbied by fuel distributors not to make the car too efficient, but I think also they are careful so the car will last as long as the warranty (and much beyond that).

Cars of today tend to be computer programmed, and you can "chip trim" your car to more horsepower, better mileage and so on. A few manufacturers have official trim programs their customers can buy, and then there are home brewn hacks sold illegally that not only breaks any warranty, but often also insurance. The home brewn chip trims may work, but you don't know if the engine will be stressed and go *boom* one day to work.

38 miles per gallon.. that is 16 km per liter or 0.62 liter per 10 km. Quite good if you are able to keep it on that level. Some tiny Korean cars like Kia Picanto 1.0L claim to make 0.49 liter per 10 km, which equals to 48 miles per gallon. Try to beat that!

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 02:50 AM
That would be hard to beat, but I'd like to get away from gas altogether. I've been drawing up rough designs for electric motors and power systems for a future project one of these days. One thing, Art Bell's giant loop antenna (http://www.ccrane.com/news/art-bell.11.19.02.aspx seemed to get electricity from nowhere, he calls it the aether, but I think it's the electromagnetic field of the earth. Anyway, I wanna put a small one up with similar dimensions but scaled down and see if I can get a constant off of it. Also been messing with magnetic repulsion as a force.

A few years ago there was a man in Tennessee that came up with a motor/generator combination that once kickstarted with a battery, just kept going. It went like this (until I can dig the article up); The battery started the motor, which was belted to a genereator that produced more than the motor needed so the motor would spin faster and draw more and the generator would spin more and produce more current. It would eventually lead to the thing blowing up if there weren't some kind of drain of the juice, and he was using it to power a television and a refrigerator. Every physics guy I talked to said it was impossible. But as soon as I can find the article I will post it here.

Nathan

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 02:53 AM
Found it!

The following is an article from the local news station, and it may do good. I have tried to follow up on it but to no avail, still waiting on some emails, too.
<http://newschannel5.com/news/0106/12/invent.html>
Nathan
Invention May Bend Rules Of Physics
Is it possible? Could someone with no practical scientific training make a machine that solves the energy crisis?
Skeptics would say no, but NewsChannel 5's Nick Beres spoke with two men who say they've developed a new engine that defies the law of physics.
Carl Tilley and Robert Kibbey say they've developed a new power source.
"We are generating more electricity than we're using," Kibbey said about their invention.
Skeptics will tell you that's impossible, but Tilley and Kibbey said the engine uses no gas, propane, diesel, wind or solar energy, and can generate 30-thousand watts of electricity an hour.
"We're bending the laws of physics. We're just more efficient recycling energy that disappears into the air," Kibbey said.
NewsChannel 5 invited Rellon Maxwell, an electrical engineer, to join us for the demonstration of the invention.
Batteries kick start the engine. They send out 16 amps.
The engine then powers two television sets plus a big generator.
The engine sends 20 amps back to the batteries.
It should be less power--not more.
Maxwell said he's never seen anything like it in his 40 years in the business.
Tilley and Kibbey are not trained scientists. They said that helped them think outside the box.
"Edison, Einstein didn't finish high school and Goodyear got vulcanized rubber by burning it," Kibbey said.
They've kept their invention a secret until now.
Other scientists will certainly want to see the engine.
Tilley and Kibbey welcome the scrutiny.
They say their invention works and has the power to change the world.
Tilley and Kibbey said their invention can power a house, or even a car without an external source of energy.
Both men said more testing is needed.
But, if what they says is true, the engine would save consumers thousands and thousands of dollars.
The Tennessee Valley Authority has already inquired about the invention.

Exluddite
May 25th, 2005, 05:14 AM
Overunity has been sought after by many people, but most likely its unachievable. The laws of thermodynamics pretty much tell you why. If I recall, the guys that you're talking about admitted that it was a fraud.
That antenna thing does actually work. The current generated is enough to be measured, but not quite enough to be useful. But we're talking efficiency here, right? Maybe we can develop useful devices with lower power consumption.

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 06:06 AM
Those guys were found out to be fake? Ah well. Maybe if they had taken the antenna idea...

I was thinking the same thing about low power consumption. Heck, I was thinking about (IF I could make it work out) running a seperate line to all the power outlets in the house, specifically a small voltage. If Art Bell got 300-something volts, that can be adapted to, say, 24 volts at a good, usable amperage. I would also like to marry this idea with the idea of the ionocraft (google it). That would be a great thing. Huge, but great.

I forgot to answer the question if all of those mods hurt the car, and it didn't. There were other things that I could have done but didn't cause I wrecked the car. Like replace the rest of the ignition system, ducted ram air, or something I would love to toy with, an electric blower! But the car was asking to be modified, heh heh.

When I get the chance to put up a loop on top of the apartment I will and see if I can power the fridge and save that much on the electric bill. And probably from there I will start installing them for people once word gets out.

Nathan

Terry Yager
May 25th, 2005, 01:59 PM
Cars of today tend to be computer programmed, and you can "chip trim" your car to more horsepower, better mileage and so on. A few manufacturers have official trim programs their customers can buy, and then there are home brewn hacks sold illegally that not only breaks any warranty, but often also insurance. The home brewn chip trims may work, but you don't know if the engine will be stressed and go *boom* one day to work.

Those chips that they sell are mostly just a clever gimmick to take your money and make it someone else's. A little understanding of how your car's computer system works could save you that money, and keep it out of thier pockets. You should know that the chips they sell are PROM chips that contain a basic set of parameters to get your engine started under any circumstances. We geeks should also know that ROM is much too slow for the kind of real-time processing that goes on in your car when it's running. What happens is that as soon as you turn on your ignition switch, the program stored in the PROM is copied into RAM, and then it is executed from RAM. Immediatly, the parameters that were copied from the PROM begin to be modified, based on the input recieved from the various sensors located in and around the engine compartment. The computer then begins to modify it's outputs, based on the new parameters it has recieved, so that within a few minutes of run-time, the program being executed is no longer the same program as contained in the ROM, it is operating on a completely different set of data than it originally was. When the computer shuts down, it doesn't shut all the way down, it just goes to sleep, and the new parameters are retained in RAM for the next time it is powered up. The PROM only has effect in the first few minutes of starting the engine, after that, it's data is no longer valid, until the next time the computer is powered down, by disconnecting the car's battery, f'rinstance. Just something to keep in mind if you're ever tempted to shell-out a few hundred on a "hot" new chip.
Nathan's method will do a lot more good. If you can do anything to get your engine breathing better, your performance will improve, and quite possibly, your mileage as well.

--T

Terry Yager
May 25th, 2005, 02:19 PM
I forgot to answer the question if all of those mods hurt the car, and it didn't. There were other things that I could have done but didn't cause I wrecked the car. Like replace the rest of the ignition system, ducted ram air, or something I would love to toy with, an electric blower! But the car was asking to be modified, heh heh.

Nathan

Good plan, but there are a couple of less drastic steps you might want to take between the tunnel ram and the supercharger, to insure that the blower is able to opreate at it's peak efficency. Like port & polish the heads, and/or install a hotter cam. The blower will do a lot more good if you first remove any bottleneck in the valvetrain. (Of course, when I build an engine, I usually start from the bottom up).

--T

patscc
May 25th, 2005, 03:25 PM
Kinda reminds me of the cold fusion guys a while back. Nothing like having Newscasters second-guess the laws of pyhsics

I wimped out, and bought a VW Jetta Diesel station wagon a couple of years ago. I usually get around ~39 mpg mixed driving, and none of this 55-mph crap, either.

patscc

mbbrutman
May 25th, 2005, 05:31 PM
I drove a 1985 Nissan Sentra for 11 years. It was stripped - no cigar lighter socket, no arm rests on the doors. Just basic transportation with a 1.6 litre 69 horsepower engine, a simple carburetor (one of the last cars to have one), and no weight anywhere.

Winter mileage in Upstate New York would dip as low as 15MPG if it was really cold and I was just shuttling back and forth between town and campus. The best mileage that I recorded that didn't look like a fluke was in the mid 40s, and that was straight highway mileage doing about 65MPH for a 4.5 hour trip.

Routine driving got me around 30MPG. When I was fresh out of college the MPG was better, as I was doing more highway driving and exploring. As things (me) slowed down, MPG settled in around 25, and that would be mostly city driving. (When we got the second car this car stayed in town much more.)

No modifications to the emmisions system.

Given how light and bare this car was, I think it would be a major challenge for an older or heavier car to match these numbers. The only thing this car was missing that would have improved gas mileage was a fuel injection system, which came on later model Sentras. Those also became much heavier.

If you modify the emmisions system and get better mileage, that's cheating. More MPG but with more pollution kind of defeats the purpose. We need engines that are both clean and efficient.

Keep the engine in tune. Check the tire pressure. Keep the air filter clean. Don't pound the gas or the brake pedals. Drive slower .. etc. That's what contributes to fuel efficiency.

And for the Americans like myself, resist the SUVs and pickup trucks. Using a 6000 vehicle to go grocery shopping is stupid.

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 05:32 PM
That's the exact reason I haven't ever gotten chips for my car, since I had it explained to me a few years back.

I completely agree about the head port and polish. The mustang had tha smaller engine, the 2.0L (vs. the 2.? other engine). Its main flaw was the head. I was advised to get a head from a different car but never had the chance. I should have known better though, cause long before when I was in high school, I saw that the bolt patterns for my future engine was the same as the tempo that was brought into the shop. Though I never really looked into it I doubt they would have swapped without any issues.

I'm looking at a website (http://www.mantapart.com/2022ohv.html) that has a head for 800.00 USD. I don't know whether or not porting and polishing would be better. Heck, the car's already got close to 100K miles on it. Hmm. As I look at that page it lets me see that there are LOTS of things available for it. Pricey :?

About the Volkswagen, that's my choice of body for replacing it with an electric motor setup. It's light, simple enough design, and front wheel drive. Got to look at a few recently and saw the engine bay is bigger than you would think it would be. And there are lots of magnet-motor setup possibilities (google again).

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 05:43 PM
In the Mustang it was actually less pollution after the modification. I totally agree that polluting is the bane of the car's existence. Heck, with the all steel motor that was in the mustang, I could have run pure alcohol(runs hotter) but it would have been dangerous.

You mentioned SUV's. I have a Jeep Cherokee that seems to be a gas hog that I haven't had a chance to put the fixes to, but it has potential. I can't find any kind of performance parts for it. They are all made for the trail and not for street driving. I have ideas, though. There is a place here that USED TO do custom exhaust, but they told me they quit that years ago. And I forgot how expensive making your own parts can get. So I am selling it. Main reason for having it is my wife had one before, and she got hit at 45+mph in the side and she was okay. Jeep wasn't even totalled but out of our range to fix it. It was safe.

But I think that once I get the funds to "upgrade" the cavalier I could get 40+mpg and run clean and have enough power if I needed it. I'm not a hot rodder anymore but I appreciate things that run efficiently. OR get a electric rabbit :D

Terry Yager
May 25th, 2005, 06:09 PM
That Mustang engine would've been the OHC 2.3-liter. I always liked Ford's V-6 too. That 60-degree configuration runs just as smooth as silk. My big challenge recently was trying to convince my friend that underneath that soccer-mom exterior, his Grand Wagoneer is all Jeep. (He should know better, his "other car" is a '49 Willis). He was asking if I had any ideas, when we were examining his Class-A motor home, sunk to it's axles in mud. I just couldn't convince him that all he had to do was hook-up a tow strap to the back of his Wagoneer, and give 'er hell.

--T

mbbrutman
May 25th, 2005, 07:28 PM
I'm generally skeptical about mods that an owner can make to a vehicle to improve performance, efficiency, etc. Given a new vehicle from the factory, a lot of engineering has gone into it. Fuel efficiency and pollution controls are two things that get a lot of attention, so if there is a cheap or moderate way to improve them, it's probably been looked at.

In the design process there are some tradeoffs. It is possible to improve fuel efficiency, but at the expense of something else usually - like performance, pollution controls, noise, ride, etc. In some cases it's legal to make those tradeoffs - higher pressure tires reduce rolling resistance, at the expense of comfort. However, except for a few cases like that there is usually very little you can do to a car except keep it well maintained.

Putting big pipes on an engine might help reduce backpressure, but that's got to be affecting something else. Very few things are free ...


Mike

NathanAllan
May 25th, 2005, 08:43 PM
You are correct. With the Mustang, I experienced excellerated wear and tear on parts that interacted with the performance parts. Basically all the parts required for atune up lasted not as long, the front wheel bearings gave faster, the carb tended to get dirtier faster and the suspension wasn't built to respond to the better acceleration and turning capability. About the suspension, wht added dramatic performance at the cost of weight was truck towing springs from auto zone. Since I did all my own work it was no big deal, I was happy about having to do extra "project work."

The cavalier is a different story. It's got all the fancy engineering that new cars have and I'm gonna have to be careful. I figure a header and new exhaust couldn't hurt. Better intake would be good too, and maybe porting the heads if not replacing it later. Better wires and plug definitely. I looked al around and could not find anything to replace the distributor with, so I guess I'll keep it.

There are other things, too. I won't list them all here as it would take too much server space, heh heh. But I am prepared to deal with the things that wear out quicker or any other losses if I can get excellent gas mileage and at least a small performance gain.

animekenji
November 15th, 2005, 03:32 AM
I had a 1966 Chevrolet Impala Station Wagon with 283 V8 that got 20 mpg on long highway trips. I also had a 1971 Dodge Charger with 318 V8 and 21 gallon fuel tank that always went 350-400 miles between fill ups. A brand new 2006 Ford Crown Victoria is EPA rated at 17 city/25 highway. Keep in mind that my 1966 and 1971 must have been at least 1000 pounds heavier because of the heavier gauge steel in the body and use of metal instead of plastic in the interior and other areas of the car, so the loss of 5mpg is excusable. I am sure a car of the same weight as a 2006 Crown Victoria probably got about the same or maybe even more fuel economy. When people talk about how old cars got crappy fuel economy and todays cars are so much better, they don't know what they're talking about. Also, those cars were built like tanks. I could hit something or take a hit and the bumpers wouldn't give an inch. You could have a moderate to severe accident and the car would still be driveable. Nowadays the whole car folds up around you at the slightest touch. A minor fender bender and you have to buy a new car. :evil:

Terry Yager
November 15th, 2005, 06:16 AM
The 283 has always been my favorite Chevy engine, along with the 292 6-banger.
Your Charger probably came with a 4-bbl carb, but a 318 equipped with a single-barrel was pretty standard for Mopar products of that period. I wonder how much better your mileage would have been?

--T

NathanAllan
December 15th, 2005, 07:39 AM
The more I do this newer-car-thing the more I learn. I just fixed a very low-tech bug in my '94 cavalier. The way it's put together there's a lot of plastic and rubber and not a lot of metal. The car has been running very rough for about a week and I couldn't figure out why. I had fresh plugs, wires, the whole tune-up thing. It was stalling out and backfiring, telling me that there was plenty of fuel making it to the cylinders but not a lot of fire getting to the plugs. I decided to start troubleshooting.

The first thing I did was put a 4 guage ground wire (quite thick) from the exhaust manifold to the body to provide a good electrical path from the plug body to ground. $5 at Auto Zone.

And that fixed it. I haven't had trouble since. Just be sure that if your car has something like this wrong with it, DO NOT ground it to the intake manifold. The thing is liable to make a spark and blow the thing up, from the gas line to the valve.

I only say that cause it looks easy and can be done accidentally.

Amazing that something as simple as that can keep the car from running and amazing that as high tech as it's supposed to be something as archaic and BASIC as a bad ground can cause a problem.

Terry Yager
December 15th, 2005, 11:44 AM
Back in my day, cars always had a "bonding strap" from the engine to the body. Haven't seen one of those in years, newer carz just don't have 'em.

--T

NathanAllan
December 15th, 2005, 12:51 PM
I think what was *supposed* to happen is there is a ground in several small places, but as the car ages and rust sets in those places become less and less conductive. I checked it a little while ago and it seems to be doign okay and not getting pinched anywhere. I'm gonna go in with my dremel and get som bare metal to metal going where I attached it. The exh manifold is a little rusty and I can see a problem there and the body screw that I used has a coating on it. For now it's doing the job tho.

My car is bound with a strap. That just sounds kinky :twisted:

NathanAllan
December 31st, 2005, 10:35 AM
After all, it was the fuel pump. So after all the fixes I put on this car it oughta run really good for a while.

coil pack
complete tune up
accessory belt (alternator, power steering pump, ac)
fuel system cleaned thoroughly
grounding strap

<sigh> I miss my Mustang.

Terry Yager
January 20th, 2006, 11:49 AM
OK, so I'm watching The Fast & The Furious for about the tenth time last night, and it occured to me... Why the hell do all these Front-Wheel-Drive cars have these huge spoilers mounted on the rear deck? Doesn't that defeat the purpose, or are the spoilers mounted upside-down? (Mebbe I'm just old-skool, but...).

--T

Terry Yager
January 20th, 2006, 11:51 AM
After all, it was the fuel pump. So after all the fixes I put on this car it oughta run really good for a while.

coil pack
complete tune up
accessory belt (alternator, power steering pump, ac)
fuel system cleaned thoroughly
grounding strap

<sigh> I miss my Mustang.

Is this the IROC Z?

--T

NathanAllan
January 20th, 2006, 12:38 PM
I wish! :D It's the Cavalier RS. After all that work, it does run a lot peppier than it had been. Next thing is gonna be either tires, starter or radiator.

I work with a bunch of people that have thos spoilers and things, adn they all say it's for reduction of drag. But that's the reason to have "a" spoiler, not those spoilers that they have that are either a foot and a half tall and polished aluminum or molded in with the body. They fell for the hype and the glitz of the movie. And I don't know how a bunch of pizza place workers and pawn shop clerks can afford that overpriced glam crap. Must have a secret that I don't know about.

Oh yeah, I have a LIFE. :wink:

But I don't see any logic in having a heavy-duty wing in the back and having a flimsy, flexible fiber-based spoiler in front that can't press down without breaking. So yeah Terry, I hear ya. Silly stuff. All form and no function.

Vlad
January 20th, 2006, 12:56 PM
I always thought the spolier thing was stupid. Unless your flying a plane, a spolier's got nothing to do with it. Drag like that is based on things we can't control, like air density and pressure. So the stupid looking fin on your car does nothing but make you look like a retard with too much money.....

Terry Yager
January 20th, 2006, 01:46 PM
OK, the way it works (worked) is, the wing on the back of the car works just like an aircraft wing, in that it creates downward pressure onto the rear wheels (which on a RWD vehicle creates an increase in traction). On a FWD vehicle, it will only create *less* traction onto the front (drive) wheels, by "lifting" on the front-end, resulting in a higher ET. I think it's all about Hollywood "prop people" hanging every option onto a car, without a real undrstanding of thier purpose.

I'm reminded of a few years ago, when "ground effects" spoilers were in fashion. I can't tell you how many S-10 pickups I've seen that have a "lift kit" and "ground effects" installed at the same time. Pardon me for thinking that owners of such vehicles are just plain st00pit, falling for any sales-pitch that comes thier way!

--T

Terry Yager
January 20th, 2006, 01:58 PM
One of my all-time favorite trucks was a few years ago, when fancy paint-jobs were in style. I pulled-up to a light behind this Silverado 4WD, with this way-kewl air-brushed mural painted onto it. The legend on the tailgate said "Stump Jumper" and I thought, "Yeah, right". Like this guy is really gonna take that $5000.00 paint-job anywhere near an actual stump!

--T

Vlad
January 21st, 2006, 08:03 AM
I think the car thing falls under the "puppets of popular culture" thing.

Hey If its in a movie, "it must be true and/or cool to do!!!111one"

And there's a guy around here that paied $6,450 for a way kewl painting on his back tailgate. It seemed like a lot, but he said it was worth it.

-Vlad

NathanAllan
January 21st, 2006, 11:37 AM
The most customization I have done to my car is a white Atari logo on the passenger rear window, a red Star Wars Imperial logo on the driver side back window, and a red and black steering wheel cover. I got lucky this semester, the student parking sticker is red. All that red matches the car's paint and the white Atari logo is very visible.

My wife wants to put in leopardskin-print seat covers :roll:

Terry Yager
March 20th, 2006, 02:59 PM
OK, so I'm watching TF&TF (again) today, and I'm finding even more questions. Like, for starters, when street racers gather on a Friday or Saturday night, nobody who has a real car walks away from it like that to go and join the party! Not anywhere within 100 miles of Woodward Ave. anyways. If you did, you'd come back 5 minutes later to find your car's shell sitting atop 4 beer canz! There's crewz around here that can strip a vehicle in that little time. Mebbe the racing scene in L.A. is different, but I doubt it.
Also, how come Vin Diesel has his N-unit cleverly concealed under his seat? That only works if nobody knows that you're running NOS. He and his car are the best known on the local circuit, and everyone knows about the N-unit, so what's the point?
Oh yeah, and one more thing...
When Vin was showing-off his daddy's rod, he made a point of mentioning that it produced so much torque that it twisted the frame coming off the line. Excuse me? All torque-y carz twist thier frames from the hole...hasn't he ever heard of ladder barz??? Judging from the perfect wheelie he later pulled in that same car, I'd say he had figgered out the problem by that time.

Just a few of my observations, but what da Hell do I know??? (I still like the movie though, even if Hollywood is clueless about real street racing).

--T

Micom 2000
March 20th, 2006, 05:03 PM
Whenever I see stuff like this it makes me realise how out-of-generation I am. In my teen 50's a "hot-rod" was with something like a 34 Ford with a Ford V-8 engine-(had to be a Ford 35B(?) block) with 3/4 cam, a Lincoln transmission, Eidelbrock something or other , carburetor by some other company, milled aluminum heads, and if you really wanted authenticity, chopped and channelled.

It still all comes down a bit masturbatory. Maybe that's what powers us to hotrod computers or to go for the big Intel new wave super-computer chips.
I find it a bit sad actually.

It's interesting also that so many IT development people, male and female, are into flying. I'm reminded of the sailing thing in "the Soul of New Machine"

Lawrence

dreddnott
April 5th, 2006, 08:04 AM
If you guys think 48 MPG for a production car would be hard to top, and left the conversation at that, you're all a bunch of pikers.

Even the Toyota Yaris (basically an Echo with a hatchback and a diesel option) ***averages*** 60-70MPG! Of course you can only buy this wonder in Europe (as the Yaris) and Japan (as the Vitz). It's been around for five years and the only reason they don't sell it here in the US is that it would DRASTICALLY cut into the ludicrously profitable hybrid sales, not to mention slaughtering the Scion xA and Toyota Matrix.

Car manufacturers don't really care about mileage except when it makes them money and it keeps them legal (within the CAFE law).

Terry Yager
April 5th, 2006, 09:13 AM
If the petroleum lobby didn't wield such clout, we'd all be burning a 100% renewable fuel right now, for pennies a gallon, so mpg would be of little concern.

--T

carlsson
April 5th, 2006, 02:36 PM
To what extent does car manufactures and governments get sponsored by the petroleum business? As pointed out, hybrid and alternative fuels are slowly getting more popular. They may not be cheap, but at least in high taxation countries like here, the government can issue tax deductions for these types of vehicles.

alexkerhead
April 5th, 2006, 02:59 PM
LOL, you guys make me jealous...I only get 16 or 17mpg in my 1995 Explorer, but that is to be expected. At least I can haul a crap load of vintage computers home without a problem....and haul a trailor load home.
If I ever need to replace the engine, I will opt for a 2.3L 4cyl. Instead of my current 4.0L V6. Same horse power, and only 20ft lbs less torque. Better technology engine. But I do love the 95/96 body style explorers.
Here is a picture of my baby. http://www.gallery.ubertechworld.com/albums/userpics/10002/PIC00002%7E1.jpg
My Hotrod project is a 1983 Silverado, power windows and locks..lol..Edel carb, valve covers, new cam, 30ci bore over, tranny cooler, etc. I dont really drive it much though, because gas costs too much, and when you only get 10-12mpg, you have to keep it parked..

DimensionDude
April 5th, 2006, 05:04 PM
According to Road & Track magazine, February 2006 edition, page 47, the Toyota Yaris is set to go on sale in the U.S. in April, 2006.

Models available will be 4-door sedan and 3-door hatchback. Engine is 1.5 liter inline 4 cylinder making 106hp and 103 lb-ft torque. Combined EPA rating of 37 mpg (5 speed manual) or 36 mpg (4 speed auto). This is the only engine available. Price to start at under $13000.

In the picture it looks kinda cute, can't see it as a real "guy's car."

Now, if you wanna talk about the new Dodge Challenger concept car...

Kent

Terry Yager
April 5th, 2006, 09:03 PM
To what extent does car manufactures and governments get sponsored by the petroleum business? As pointed out, hybrid and alternative fuels are slowly getting more popular. They may not be cheap, but at least in high taxation countries like here, the government can issue tax deductions for these types of vehicles.

It didn't take long to ban flourocarbons, first in America, then the world, once thier impact on the ozone layer was discovered. What if legislation were passed banning the use of fossil fuels? What if, instead of paying farmers *not* to produce certain crops, in order to keep the price up for those who do produce those crops, they were allowed (encouraged?) to produce alcohol-friendly crops (corn, sourgum, sugarcane/beets, etc), on that otherwise unused acreage?
For the same as current manufacturing costs, vehicle manufacturers could produce vehicles that easily & efficiently burn 95 - 100% ethanol, and current vehicles could be retro-fitted for a couple hundred bucks.
Why doesn't this legislation happen? Big petroleum's visible contributions to political interests are easy enough to track, not to mention the under-the-table stuph. (Hell, our current president's family made most of thier vast fortunes dealing in fossil fuels. It's not difficult to guess where his loyalties reside.).

--T

Terry Yager
April 5th, 2006, 09:16 PM
And this doesn't even begin to address the political/social/economic ramifications. What if a buncha desert-dwellers suddenly found themselves in the position they were in a hundred years ago -- with nothing to eat but sand, and all the light sweet crude they want to wash it down with? That would create such a power-vacume in the middle east that the sucking sound wolud blow-out even Ross Perot's eardrums. The US (and other powers) would no longer be able to excercise whatever little control they now have, and Armegeddon becomes a real possibility.

</rant>

--T

carlsson
April 6th, 2006, 07:09 AM
So, the majority of cars will be driven by petrol until all the Arab/Muslim countries have been neutralized? (for some value of "neutralized")

It is also a question how much oil you can pump. Twenty years ago, it was said that the economically visable oil would be gone by today, but now they say 20 years from now. Some say 100 years, or even more. If technology allows to extract oil from sources less profitable - either because raw oil gets more valuable or technology gets better - it may last even longer. Replacing oil for heating houses appears to end much sooner than replacing petrol to drive cars.

Terry Yager
April 6th, 2006, 07:22 AM
The majority of cars will be driven by petrol until:

a) The oil wells all run dry, or

b) The tree-huggers revolt and overthrow the fat-cat oil producers and thier political cronies, or

c) The world ends, or

d) All of the above

--T

dreddnott
April 6th, 2006, 11:34 AM
37 MPG for the Americanised Toyota Yaris? What a total ripoff! Even the old Toyota Echo (non-hatchback Yaris) they've been selling stateside gets over 40 MPG!

In England even the gas-powered Yaris gets over 50 MPG, and the diesel pulls 68 MPG COMBINED. Of course these are measurements in Imperial gallons but I think the difference adds up to less than 10% less MPG stateside.

Is Toyota crippling the efficiency to sell the ludicrous-profit-margin Prius, or is it the strict environmental regulations (especially so here in SoCal)??

It's not even legal to sell new diesel-engine passenger cars in California.

carlsson
April 6th, 2006, 11:46 AM
Ah, interesting. In Sweden, we're finally moving in the other direction when it comes to diesel. In the rest of Europe, almost every second car that is sold is a diesel (or so it is said). In Sweden, less than 10% have been diesel so far, mostly due to penalizing taxes based on the diesel engines from the 1970'ties. Those polluted the air with nasty gases, and thus the yearly tax in combination with a tax per mile you drive would make them very unattractive to own.

Since a decade or more, modern diesels with particle filters and other wonders let out far less nasty gases and CO2 (or so it is said) than a regular petrol driven car. Swedish taxation has remained the same though, until this year when they radically change the system for all vehicle types and all fuels. In some extreme cases, a diesel car with a particle filter will be profitable to own compared to the equal petrol car only after around 80-100 miles/year, but more typically the break-even is around 1000 miles/year.

Terry Yager
April 6th, 2006, 06:24 PM
So, the majority of cars will be driven by petrol until all the Arab/Muslim countries have been neutralized? (for some value of "neutralized")


I don't mean to give the wrong impression here, I'm not anti-Arab or anti-Islam. In fact, probably the opposite is true. If being anti-Israeli makes me by default pro-Arab/Muslim/Palastinian, then so be it. I just refuse to be labeled 'Anti-Semite' on the basis of my political stance. Those who choose to label me Anti-Semite don't seem to recall that the Palastinians/Arabs/et. al. are also sons of Shem.
I believe that one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. The Israelis have been participating in terrorism all along, from the 1947 Bombing of the King David Hotel, which killed 91 civillians, right up to the latest act of genocidal warfare, this morning's missle attack on a residential neighborhood in Gaza, which might or might not have 'neutralized' a terrorist or two. I mean, really...??? They machine-gun children who commit 'insurection' by throwing rocks at tanks! Pardon me for not jumping to the side of the 'poor, oppressed, Jews', but there's only so much I can stomache. I got nothin' against Jews, Muslims, Arabs, or any other group, (well, mebbe JWs, but they're just plain annoying), but the simple accident of birth doesn't make one inherently evil, however, a people's choice of government can reflect on that culture's general mindset.

--T

carlsson
April 7th, 2006, 02:38 PM
Sorry, it was not my intention to make you sound like you want to blast those Far East countries into oblivion. Maybe neutralized is far too military word to use. How about "Western adopted" or "Western civilized"? I'd rather not just say civilized, since I realize these countries already have a civilization, albeit sometimes not highlighting the same values as other civilizations do.

Terry Yager
April 7th, 2006, 04:33 PM
I dunno, mebbe I read it the wrong way. My usual knee-jerk is to jump-in on the side of the underdawg. (Give Ireland back to the Irish!).

--T

carlsson
April 8th, 2006, 05:06 AM
What if a buncha desert-dwellers suddenly found themselves in the position they were in a hundred years ago -- with nothing to eat but sand, and all the light sweet crude they want to wash it down with? That would create such a power-vacume in the middle east that the sucking sound wolud blow-out even Ross Perot's eardrums. The US (and other powers) would no longer be able to excercise whatever little control they now have, and Armegeddon becomes a real possibility.
I understood this that if the world was not oil dependent anymore, the people in countries whose wealth is based on the oil industry would not have any obligations or business relations to the rest of the world, so they could cause a big fight (what you refer to as Armegeddon). My point was that if these countries have been Western adopted (or neutralized as I first wrote) before the oil dependence ends, the riots may be avoided on a civil manner.

DOS-Master
April 19th, 2006, 10:49 PM
I had to vent somewhere. I am seeing ads on TV about these new cars getting 38 miles per gallon and this is the best that they can do? I had a 1977 Mustang (yes, the Pinto based one) and I got that kind of mileage. It wasn't supposed to get that good of mileage, though. What I did was:

1. Add a header to its 4-cyl engine with a as straight as possible 2" pipe,
2. Put a Mallory SuperCoil on the ignition system with copper core wires,
3. Put a cheap-o TurboII muffler on my now near-straight pipe,
4. Block the smog pump,
5. Put in the hot-burning and high temp splitfire spark plug,
6. Ran an open air filter.

So I was basically tweaking my system to run better. This kind of thing doesn't really work on newer cars like my Cavalier, but I can still get a header and better exhaust, which I plan on doing, and get the high quality wires that have copper cores. Better spark, better mileage. And they make a ram air for it, too. Better mileage from less restriction of airflow. Anyway, most cars have tweaks in them that make them run better. Since I was doing all of my own work it was easy for me but I understand that if you had someone do all this it would likely cost a bundle.

Every time I see those commercials I remember my Mustang. And then most likely I go into a tirade about it to anyone who'll listen, heh heh.

Nathan
when i was a teen just before i got my car my mom took me to sears in her yellow mustang it was brand new 1977 and every1 there thought it was cool. I didn't i'm a chevy kind of guy

NathanAllan
May 24th, 2006, 05:16 PM
I keep seeing those commercials and I keep thinking back to my mustang. matter of fact, there's one like my old one for sale on Ft. Bliss (saw it while I was delivering). It looks like it's been restored and is all shiny. I had 15" rims on mine, the one i saw has it's original 13" and it kind of makes the car look a bit goofy. They were wide, and I kept having to buy tires for them rubbing against the inside of the wheel wells. http://www.angelfire.com/ca/stoneys/ I found that looking for a pic. The one I saw is blue or silver (it was dark when I saw it) and looks like maybe a ghia. I miss that car. I'm not gonna even ask about it, got too much to do. If I can find a fixer upper that's more or less complete and not wrecked I might go for it :)

Terry Yager
May 24th, 2006, 05:37 PM
Heh! My first Mustang was a '64, which I happily got rid of, after it had tried to kill me on several occaisions. The steering wheel is just a little too large for a car that size, and when attempting to make a quick (power-slide) left-hand turn, the driver's elbow has a tendancy to bash into the doorframe, right smack on the funny-bone, causing the hand to go numb and lose it's grip on the wheel, leaving car and driver at the mercy of inertial forces. (The last time, it was a telephone pole that stopped me from squirting out into heavy traffic, after jumping the curb and shooting across the median).

I dunno, I have had several Mustang IIs, which I really liked, but I never really understood the popularity of the 'original' body-style.

--T

Terry Yager
May 24th, 2006, 05:57 PM
Of course, when I saw my first Mustang II, I sorta sneered at it (having come up around Mach 1s, Boss 302s, & Shelby GTs, etc). I took one look and said something to the effect of: "Mustang? That ain't no Mustang, it's just a Pinto with a cigarette lighter!" It took a while for me to come to appreciate the 'new' down-sized pony car.

--T

Micom 2000
May 24th, 2006, 06:16 PM
Possibly the solution to gas prices goes back to WW2 where I remember reading of one enterprising Brit who due to petrol scarcities had a closed Vat on top of his Morris filled with pig excrement which supplied him with methane to power his vehicle. Think it also had a picture of it, so it wasn't simply urban lgend.

Could be the BS coming out of most of the western "leaders" could also be packaged and used for the same thing.

L

DimensionDude
May 25th, 2006, 02:36 PM
Alternatives can be expensive. I briefly looked into converting a car to electric power but the approximately $10,000 it would take can buy a lot gasoline.

Kent

NathanAllan
May 27th, 2006, 01:10 AM
I've thought about electric but yeah, they're so expensive as to not be affordable (to convert at least). I'm trying to figure out a way to use alcohol effectively and not spend a fortune converting. Or maybe dual fuel. Still some research to be done there.

mbbrutman
May 27th, 2006, 06:39 AM
I have a practical solution for the higher cost of gas. The vehicle in question is a 1994 Saturn SL2. (124hp) First, some data:

AVG MPG: April & May 2005: 26.13
AVG MPG: April & May 2006: 28.07

Difference: 7.4% improvement

I'm driving a little differently than I used to. First it started as an experiment, but given my compulsive-obsessive behavior it is sticking. One of the big energy loses in driving a car is in using the brakes, and then accelerating back up to speed. Keeping this in mind, I've been doing the following:

- Driving at 60 MPG instead of 65. Yes, I'm a wuss and I'm getting passed by young kids on bicycles. However, even on an aerodynamic car the efficiency drops very quickly at higher speeds.

- Coasting into stop signs and red lights from an earlier distance. This gives two benefits .. it keeps you from wasting energy by braking, and it saves energy when getting back up to speed. It does require more planning and thought though - you just can go barging up to intersections anymore.


This is just simply an optimization problem ... With those two minor changes my $2.71 gallon of gas now goes a measurable bit further. I still need to check the tires to be sure they are properly inflated, but other than that nothing extra has been done to the car. Just the driver got fixed. :-)

(I need to burn the money on gas for the airplane, which is usually $1.50 more per gallon than car gas.)

Terry Yager
May 27th, 2006, 07:45 AM
Manual transmission?

--T

mbbrutman
May 27th, 2006, 08:11 AM
Auto!

I'd rather a manual, but this was the wife's car first. She's in a larger (and hungrier) minivan now. Having a choice of gears would be even better ...

Terry Yager
May 27th, 2006, 08:22 AM
Yeah, having a clutch to ride would probably increase mileage a little more. Still, that ain't bad for an automatic.

--T

carlsson
May 28th, 2006, 02:17 PM
I coast into stop signs too, if there is no other traffic behind me. To plan your driving is often featured in motor magazines, but it is also important to now and then brake hard to keep the brakes alive and not rust apart, at least over here (maybe brakes don't stick and rust in e.g. California?).

NathanAllan
May 29th, 2006, 12:20 AM
My sister had a Saturn and she got great gas mileage but she made up for it in maintenance. She might have gotten a lemon, but her belt tensioner went out and it wasn't immediately apparent and it took out everything that was on the belt. My wife and I found a Saturn for $850, running and driving, and we couldn't figure out why it was so cheap! It was spotless and looked great. We found out. It had a transmission leak, and it was on the one-piece housing that had to be replaced. We talked to a few mechanics (I haven't worked on a Saturn ever and don't know them) and the housing was gonna be so pricey as to make the car not worth it. I don't remember most of the details, but jusat remember the bad feeling about it. After that I'm not much of a Saturn fan.

I'll go back to my original post. Good airflow in and good exhaust flow out with an over the top ignition system does great for mileage. Those other tricks, too. And sensible driving habits.

mbbrutman
May 29th, 2006, 06:52 AM
I'm not entirely enamored with my Saturn. It is pushing 13 years old with a little over 81,000 miles on it. At the time (1993) it was a reasonable purchase, but I certainly wouldn't buy any of the current crop of Saturns.

Good points about it:


Traction control & anti-lock brakes. These were uncommon in small cars in 1993.
Relatively good reliability. The engine has been perfect so far, except a few minor leaks.
I feel great pulling up at the gas pump ...
AC still works!


Bad points:


It is small .. and low .. and cramped.
@#!$%#Q$ automatic seat belts

NathanAllan
June 14th, 2006, 06:50 AM
I finally applied one of the 'fixes' to the jeep. I put on an oem air filter from some different car and it improved the gas mileage a lot! I made three trips across town and used less than 1/4 a tank. Might not sound like much, but I was using more than that much after two trips! I took a round filter that is supposed to be in a housing and connected it directly to the hose that connects to my housing. As far as measurements, it is about the same as my present filter but in a circle, like if you took the stock one and rolled it into a circle. But it's open and lets a lot more air in. It sounds better running, smoother, and has a throatier sound to it. Didn't do much for performance, basically raised the present power curve up one or two notches(fractions) but the gas mileage is what I was after and I got it. Now I gotta take out my filter housing and block off all the hoses going to it. I could have bought the 'performance' filter for 29.99, but I went to the filter wall at autozone and found one almost exactly like it. This is a cylindrical filter instead of the cool-looking conical one, but it works great.