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Old 11-19-2012, 09:14 AM   #11
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Romans5.8 and all, Interesting thread. And I am in general agreement with all that has been proposed. I would also like to offer another twist. If we really want to reduce our fuel consumption in North America we also (IMHO) should look at what we drive in terms of size and some of our habits. One habit that I would propose should be outlawed is the use of Drive-throughs. Now to some degree I am going to generalize, however for most successful brands in both Canada and the USA, I imagine the scenario is the same. The drive-through targetted stop time (time you are at the window) is say 50 seconds. And on average through the day there are 5 vehicles in line. So if everything goes well then each car is idling, pulling forward and braking for a total of approx. 250 seconds or 4 minutes and 10 seconds. I wonder how many millions of cars will be in a drive-through today. That's a lot of gas to go no where. On the size of vehicle front; hey we are leading by example with scoots. And if you look at other parts of the world (europe, asia) you see that most drive compacts and a lot more bikes. Frankly, most of us could live with a compact, I think. I would have to make some adjustments. Like maybe have some marina haul my boat and keep it in the water all summer. But at the end of the day convenience is why I "need" a bigger vehicle. I believe if we get the price of fuel high enough it will force us to ask the correct questions and we will see more bikes and compacts on the road. There may be one other significant benefit. When we know we don't have a lot of metal wrapped around us, maybe we will become better/safer drivers. Kind of like most bike riders do. Papa Smrph
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:20 AM   #12
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Thanks for the replies. I put some Seafoam in my tank last night.
I will get some stabil if it rests more than 2 weeks.
Even with the pure gas you never know how long it's been setting in the tank underground.

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Old 11-19-2012, 09:34 AM   #13
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I pull up to the gas station, there are six pumps, two of which have the green or yellow diesel handle. Both have a gas car or pickup filling up at them. One time it was a Honda Accord filling up with diesel. I think I stopped him at six gallons. If other pumps are open, please don't block the diesel pumps.

I use a small amount of biodiesel to improve lubricity and some cleaning effects on my diesel engine. However, beyond that biodiesel is every bit as much a waste of resources as fuel alcohol.

In my opinion, the biggest problem in America is people are trained to expect too much power. My VW TDI has more power than I need, although I like it. Same with the Vulcan. I could get by with less, although I like having what is there. Everytime the automakers come out with a fuel efficient car, they keep making it bigger and more powerful. A Prius should be able to get 70 mpg, except it is loaded with excess power so liberals can go 85 mph on the freeways. (As they preach to us we must conserve resources and stop man caused global warming, which is a myth.)
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:24 AM   #14
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I believe if we get the price of fuel high enough it will force us to ask the correct questions and we will see more bikes and compacts on the road.
Sorry Smrph; but if you are talking about policies that artificially or unnecessarily increase fuel costs; well, that is a load of B.S.!

There is a lot of benefits to reducing oil consumption; but they do not outweigh the benefits of affordable energy/transportation.

Yes, people should make more efficient choices on how they use fuel. That goes for people doing 80 in their smart car, as well as people driving their F250 to pick up groceries.

But, fuel at $5 a gallon, unnecessarily, is economic strangulation, and will result in a lower standard of living for everyone who is not wealthy.

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Old 11-19-2012, 10:52 AM   #15
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Thanks for the replies. I put some Seafoam in my tank last night.
I will get some stabil if it rests more than 2 weeks.
Even with the pure gas you never know how long it's been setting in the tank underground.
We've had ethanol blend mandate here in MN for many years. Just two weeks is unnecessary for Stabil, et al, from my experience but certainly won't hurt anything other than roughly $1 more (per tank) out of your pocket to add it.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:10 AM   #16
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And if you look at other parts of the world (europe, asia) you see that most drive compacts and a lot more bikes.
Yeah. However, I bet if asked, many would rather be driving something larger if they had the space and fuel prices we do. Not only is fuel much more highly taxed there, many of the places to drive and park are much smaller. Big vehicles just aren't practical in many of these places just due to size alone. It's not that they necessarily like driving 125cc motorcycles and dinky little cars with 1.2L engines.

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Old 11-19-2012, 11:28 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Pilgrim View Post
Thanks for the replies. I put some Seafoam in my tank last night.
I will get some stabil if it rests more than 2 weeks.
Even with the pure gas you never know how long it's been setting in the tank underground.
I agree with whoaru, you're good for more than a couple weeks.

Also, seafoam has all of the properties needed to stabilize fuel. If you are already using it, there is no need for sta-bil.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa Smrph View Post
Romans5.8 and all, Interesting thread. And I am in general agreement with all that has been proposed. I would also like to offer another twist. If we really want to reduce our fuel consumption in North America we also (IMHO) should look at what we drive in terms of size and some of our habits. One habit that I would propose should be outlawed is the use of Drive-throughs. Now to some degree I am going to generalize, however for most successful brands in both Canada and the USA, I imagine the scenario is the same. The drive-through targetted stop time (time you are at the window) is say 50 seconds. And on average through the day there are 5 vehicles in line. So if everything goes well then each car is idling, pulling forward and braking for a total of approx. 250 seconds or 4 minutes and 10 seconds. I wonder how many millions of cars will be in a drive-through today. That's a lot of gas to go no where. On the size of vehicle front; hey we are leading by example with scoots. And if you look at other parts of the world (europe, asia) you see that most drive compacts and a lot more bikes. Frankly, most of us could live with a compact, I think. I would have to make some adjustments. Like maybe have some marina haul my boat and keep it in the water all summer. But at the end of the day convenience is why I "need" a bigger vehicle. I believe if we get the price of fuel high enough it will force us to ask the correct questions and we will see more bikes and compacts on the road. There may be one other significant benefit. When we know we don't have a lot of metal wrapped around us, maybe we will become better/safer drivers. Kind of like most bike riders do. Papa Smrph
You make some good points, but those should be individual decisions to save money, not government regulations. I am not in favor of legislation that mandates what an individual does unless what that individual is doing can be proven to be dangerous or harmful to other human beings, outside the scope of reasonable. (e.g., driving on a road occupied by another driver is a mutually accepted risk and should be legal. Driving on a road occupied by another vehicle while intoxicated or under the influence of mind altering drugs is not a mutually accepted risk, and should not be legal. etc.)

I have said for a long time people could save a tremendous amount of money by doing the exact same thing the trucking companies do... govern yourself at 65. You don't need to physically install a governor, but, if you really want to save money on fuel without spending a fortune on doing so, a great way to do it is to try and never exceed 65 miles an hour. The faster you go, the more wind resistance you encounter and thus the more energy your car or truck must use. A 'hyper miling' team got an unmodified V-6 powered F-150 to average 40 miles per gallon by not exceeding 40mph and using techniques to use the least amount of fuel possible when accelerating. That, to me, is outside of the scope of reasonable (just like me turning around and spending $30,000 on a new hybrid right now when my car runs just fine). But doing 65, for me, is perfectly reasonable as it doesn't really end up costing me any time. When you do 80 on the highway, all you are doing is racing to the next block of traffic, or pair of 18-wheelers trying to pass each other bumping up to their governors taking 10 miles to do so. When you do that, I catch right up to you, only I wasn't having to jockey for position, use extra fuel, or even turn off my cruise control. In the grand scheme of things, if you and I were on the exact same road with ZERO traffic and were able to sustain our speeds, then you doing 80 and me doing 65 would result in you just being a couple minutes faster than me in a typical commute. That still, to me, is well worth the money I save in the course of a year doing this.

BUT, you've got every right in this country to do drive a lifted F-350 with smoke stacks and every if-only-my-high-school-bullies-could-see-me-now accessory on it you want. It's just, if you're gonna do that, don't whine about fuel prices! I ride a motorcycle, like most of you. I save fuel, but then I spend that and more on maintenance and accessories. I do it because it's something I enjoy. If I just wanted to save gas, I'd have a 250cc scooter or one of those old early 90's Saturns that got 40mpg and you can get on craigslist for $500. (Actually I know a lot of guys who have done that to sit in the garage next to their pickup truck, just a go-to-work car). Or, I could invest in a hybrid, TDI volkswagen, or other more efficient vehicle. But, my 25mpg sedan is adequate for me right now, and that's my right!

My point was, the technologies are readily available for more efficient cars but the MARKET doesn't want them. Once again, Ford has a near 70 mile per gallon compact car! Now, not everyone is going to want a compact car. Some have large families, and that won't work unless it's just a commuter vehicle. Others have jobs that frequently require them to haul something, so they need a pickup truck. Few people can afford to have an arsenal of cars for every situation so we are forced to pick a vehicle that suits most of our needs with some compromises. But for guys like me who can easily get away with a compact car, it would be perfect! Hello, 70 miles per gallon with mostly conventional technologies my local mechanic can work on? It doesn't look like a space ship, and it's a practical and austere car?

BUT, the American market does not want Diesel, so they won't buy it.

There are a couple of solutions to the rising cost of fuel. One is to regulate the crap out of it, which hasn't worked in the past and frankly, goes against what many Americans hold to be the values and spirit of this country (though, I'll grant that others don't feel the same way and want the government to control more... that's just not me). The other solution, is to develop a market for more efficient vehicles by, as consumers, voting with our dollar and demanding better technologies. Look at all the 'wars' that have happened in consumerism in years past. Hello? The 60's? Look what happened when companies fought to make the most powerful car they could! What we today spend thousands to build you could buy off the like in 1965. The family sedan could be crankin' 400 horsepower! If the American market researched the product, learned more about technologies like diesel, etc., they could demand better products and they'd get it. Imagine if the small car market flocked to Volkswagen because a consistent mid 40's MPG car that is reliable and practical is what they want? I bet that 67 mpg diesel focus would suddenly be in the American market. Or if the pickup truck market flocked to more efficient pickup trucks like Ford's new 'eco-boost' pickup (25mpg and can, supposedly, pull anything any other full size pickup can), or the new truck Chevy is supposed to be coming out with that's supposed to rival that. And so on and so forth.

But INSTEAD, the American market buys what they've always bought, because that's what their dad bought, and his dad. Look at the Ford-Chevy-Dodge crap. They have all been all over the place with ups and downs in every category but people SWEAR by a particular brand. The other two are absolutely useless, but my brand is the holy grail. So, capitalism doesn't move because they will blindly buy whatever their favorite brand makes, rather than researching what options they have and forcing them to compete! It's almost like presidential elections. Ford, Chevy and Dodge don't worry about the vast majority of their buyers because the vast majority will buy whatever they sell (like Red and Blue states). They only market to the small minority of people who might actually research their options and make a different decision than they did before (swing states). That's why technology isn't moving as fast as it could be, not because of a lack of red tape and regulation!
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:01 PM   #18
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Yeah. However, I bet if asked, many would rather be driving something larger if they had the space and fuel prices we do. Not only is fuel much more highly taxed there, many of the places to drive and park are much smaller. Big vehicles just aren't practical in many of these places just due to size alone. It's not that they necessarily like driving 125cc motorcycles and dinky little cars with 1.2L engines.

Cost is a factor too. Drivers licenses are expensive and taxes on automobiles are huge. It's also a dense urban environment. The whole of europe is not unlike our big cities. Look at New York City. That place is crawling with small scooters, small compact cars, and people who have never owned a car in their life. I remember a few years ago at a place I used to work there was a guy who had some intense culture shock when he found out that a LOT of people out here drive cars for hundreds of thousands of miles, and how he couldn't believe how hard it was to find a used car with less than 50k miles (or even 100k miles). He lived in Manhattan, and he and his wife, his parents, AND his maternal grandparents all shared the same little old buick that they paid a couple hundred bucks a month to park in a garage. He said out of all of them, it might get driven once every couple of weeks. Here, you drive everywhere. To the grocery store, to work, to school. Mass transit doesn't exist in these rural areas and most places are too far to practically bike or walk. In big cities, and in europe, you can get to most 'typical' places by foot. It's not hard to walk down to the grocery store and get stuff for dinner, or ride your bike to work, or even hop on a bus. Those of us who spend a lot of time in our cars might want something a little more reliable and comfortable. I've owned several compact cars though and would gladly do it again. For going to work you can't beat it. Great gas mileage and they do everything you need them to.

But, as I've said before, their compact cars are better! Those little 1.2L engines are turbodiesel engines putting out as much horsepower as our 4 cylinder sedans are. And not every asian country is a third world country riding around on a glorified golf cart! There are some really good cars over there, made by OUR manufacturers, that aren't being sold here because we don't want them, mostly because they use things we don't understand (diesel engines) or have things we would never buy (like no automatic transmission option. In europe, an automatic transmission is like a trike is to many bikers... it's something you only get if you aren't physically able to drive a 'normal' one)

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Old 11-19-2012, 12:21 PM   #19
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They only market to the small minority of people who might actually research their options and make a different decision than they did before (swing states). That's why technology isn't moving as fast as it could be, not because of a lack of red tape and regulation!
I really like that last statement!

A significant portion of the current "eco" movement is more motivated by profit than by finding workable solutions.
Pass a regulation here and there and the next thing you know; you too could be making millions by planting trees in another country.
*real trees may or may not actually be planted
*void where prohibited by common sense
*at participating legislatures only


Just a couple of points.

I have owned more Fords than other vehicles; I am most familiar with their operation and maintenance. I generally look at Fords first because I am comfortable with them. However; I currently own a GMC a Dodge and a Kawasaki. No Ford.

I think internal combustion technology is nearing its peak. We don't use the best technology; usually because it smells worse, or we worry about future availability of parts and maintenance.
And I think there is an view that exhaust smoke = more pollution = lower fuel efficiency. I really don't think most people realize that diesels get better MPG.

I guess marketing could correct that; but when does marketing really try to educate?

I don't think there are more than a handful of advertisements that use facts and reason to convince you to buy their product.

Expensive cars tend to show that you can enjoy your retirement more or pick up classy women with one of their cars.
Sports cars and small trucks mean that you will have lots of friends that party and get hot scantily clad women.
Mid sized sedans mean a great family life, beautiful wife and precocious children.

The E.D. pills are the best commercials though. If you use Viagra you will have a 3 day old shave and be a problem solver; but there will be NO WOMEN around.
If you chose Cialis; it will give you an outdoor bath fetish. You will be in separate tubs; but at least there will be a great view and a Woman.

Scott
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:34 PM   #20
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Yeah. However, I bet if asked, many would rather be driving something larger if they had the space and fuel prices we do. Not only is fuel much more highly taxed there, many of the places to drive and park are much smaller. Big vehicles just aren't practical in many of these places just due to size alone. It's not that they necessarily like driving 125cc motorcycles and dinky little cars with 1.2L engines.
I think if I lived in a big city or in Europe where everything is close together and you don't go over
45 mph ever, etc. I would be riding a Rebel 250 or similar all the time instead of my Vulcan. But I don't. I live in rural Arizona and distances can be huge here. A short drive to the next city, Bullhead/Laughlin, is almost 40 miles. A drive to a bigger city is 2 hours to Las Vegas area or over 3 1/2 to Phoenix. That is when my VW TDI really pays, it often gets better mileage than my Vulcan has so far. That 80 to 90 mpg in the Rebel is really nice, but I like the stability of my Vulcan for anything of highway speeds. I really should be riding my daughter's Rebel more around town.
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