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Updated: 18 weeks 3 days ago

Re: Horrifying hit-and-run in Brighton

29 January 2016 - 9:40pm
mark a. wrote:There are many reasons why 4x4s and crossovers are popular, beyond looks. The height gives you:

- Easier to get your child in and out of baby seats
- Less bending over to put shopping into the boot
- Less bending and crouching for elderly getting in and out
- Bigger boot (sometimes)
- Views over hedgerows
- Often extra comfort (travelling sofa) and roominess inside
- Extra towing capacity for caravans etc
- Yes, extra capability that one time in 100 years that someone actually takes it off road.
It's a great list. Against that can I suggest:-

- Use vastly more resources to construct.
- Use vastly more resources to run and most are diesel whose particulate matter has been shown to cause many thousands of premature deaths a year and to worsen respiratory illness in hundreds of thousands.
- Are much more likely to kill both pedestrians and the occupants of other vehicles in collisions due to their extra mass and poor pedestrian safety.
- Aren't that great at protecting their occupants since they're more likely to roll in an accident.
- The 'great' views encourage the drivers to look further up the road with the result they're often not 'seeing' stuff directly in front. As a consequence they're involved in more rear end shunts. (Not sure if this is still true, but last time I checked it was).
- Their ability to go 'offroad' combined with mass means they're much less likely to be stopped by kerbs, garden walls and even house walls when they do crash.
- Making them drive like cars means people drive them like cars despite the fact that the physics says "no".
- A surprising number of people who drive them seem to think that 4 wheel drive also gives them magically stopping power on ice in an emergency.

Just thought I'd add all that to balance up the "benefits" although I can see it's a tough one...

Re: (Not so) Useless police

29 January 2016 - 9:09pm
This charmer will get caught sooner or later

Re: Horrifying hit-and-run in Brighton

29 January 2016 - 8:17pm
There are many reasons why 4x4s and crossovers are popular, beyond looks. The height gives you:

- Easier to get your child in and out of baby seats
- Less bending over to put shopping into the boot
- Less bending and crouching for elderly getting in and out
- Bigger boot (sometimes)
- Views over hedgerows
- Often extra comfort (travelling sofa) and roominess inside
- Extra towing capacity for caravans etc
- Yes, extra capability that one time in 100 years that someone actually takes it off road.

Yes, there are many disadvantages to them as we've all pointed out, and you can get combinations of the advantages with a people carrier or a tall small car like a Ford B-Max. But don't make lazy assumptions that anyone who buys an X5 did so purely for vanity.

I drive a Volvo estate currently on winter tyres and don't care that much for 4x4s, but I can see why people buy them.

Anyway, the post was originally about a hit-and-run. I'm hope the people they've arrested were the right people, since whoever did this needs to be put away for a very long time.

Re: (Not so) Useless police

29 January 2016 - 8:07pm
Bigdummysteve wrote:Update!

First I must apologise to Thames valley police, I received a phone call today and they had traced the previous owner but could not trace the new registered owner. So full marks for effort they did try and said they would have take it further if they could trace the vehicles whereabouts. Moral of the story? Report those incidents, the people on the desk might give the impression that they don't care but in the background real effort might be going on. The long sentence handed down to the joker who swerved at cyclists recently shows its worth reporting these things.

A fair deduction. Good work Steve...b

Re: Horrifying hit-and-run in Brighton

29 January 2016 - 7:52pm
Their test on 'jus cold and wet' roads was interesting as well, not quite as pronounced though.

The fact that the 4wd ended up in more trouble was noteworthy - it could just about get a few metres further, but then lost it and was sliding back uncontrollably

Re: Horrifying hit-and-run in Brighton

29 January 2016 - 5:45pm
RickH wrote:On the subject of 4WD & tyres, there's an Interesting comparison video on 2WD & winter tyres V 4WD here from Auto Express.



I had my own comparison in the snow a couple of weeks ago. Driving around snowed up backstreets in Glasgow. My fwd Octavia with all season tyres got me everywhere with no drama. The 4wd Octavia Scout with summer tyres I drove at work wasn't as good. Both cars pulled away OK. The Scout tended to skid easily on downslopes even braking from 2nd gear speeds.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 5:16pm
OK.
Simple bit of transformation, it means that 6760 divided by the CO2 figure equals the MPG

99g per Km for our 500 twinair works out as 68mpg.
No way is this true.

170g per Km for our Clio works out as 40mpg.
Now that seems correct to me as we often get that figure or even exceed it.

Therefore Fiat are cooking the books.
No way on God's Earth that we can get 68mpg diving it exactly the same in the Clio that returns 40mpg.

Re: (Not so) Useless police

29 January 2016 - 4:39pm
Not odd at all!
Either the owner has moved house with no forwarding address, or never bothered to re-register.
I had two years of problems with a car I sold - the new owner hadn't re-registered and picked up a load of tickets. It culminated in two cops coming to my door at 11pm after finding it abandoned in a ditch.

I played the whole game again with the previous owner of my house who hadn't bothered to update his V5.

Here's hoping that a routine number plate camera finds your man.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 4:32pm
Mick F wrote:Thanks for that. A day isn't complete until you learn something!

Strange that some economical cars produce more CO2.

Our Clio is rated at 170g per Km. So that must be directly proportional to the tested fuel consumption.
Our 500 is rated at 99g per Km.

Therefore, there must be a table or an equation to work this out?
Why have CO2 per Km as a figure when they could just use MPG?

I reckon (or at least I did reckon) that MPG and CO2 weren't directly related. But as they are, there must be a conversion figure.
There is. For a petrol car take 6760 and divide that by the mpg. For diesel use 7440. Clearly as mpg goes up, CO2 per km goes down. See
https://www.eta.co.uk/2010/02/22/calcul ... m-its-mpg/

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 4:26pm
Thanks for that. A day isn't complete until you learn something!

Strange that some economical cars produce more CO2.

Our Clio is rated at 170g per Km. So that must be directly proportional to the tested fuel consumption.
Our 500 is rated at 99g per Km.

Therefore, there must be a table or an equation to work this out?
Why have CO2 per Km as a figure when they could just use MPG?

I reckon (or at least I did reckon) that MPG and CO2 weren't directly related. But as they are, there must be a conversion figure.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 4:19pm
Mick F wrote:Samuel D wrote:CO2 is directly proportional to the weight of fuel burned ........... There's much more to it than that perhaps?

Surely, CO2 is a by-product of burning fuel in a particular engine, not directly proportional per litre burned. Differently designed engines will produce less CO2 than others. Yes?
No. It is a matter of very basic chemistry as taught at GSCE. Each atom of carbon in the fuel is converted to CO2 when the engine combusts it. What else do you propose happens to it? Clearly a little bit of uncombusted or partially combusted fuel can sometimes be seen coming out the exhaust pipe, for example as soot, but that is tiny unless the engine is very faulty. And there is a tiny amount of carbon monoxide, 'cos people can poison themselves with exhaust fumes in an enclosed space, but it only takes very tiny amounts to poison you. So it doesn't quite all convert to CO2, but I would say that something like 99.9% is a reasonable estimate of the conversion rate even in a Model T Ford. So basically the CO2 is precisely related to the quantity of fuel consumed.

The kind of fuel makes a difference. CO2 per litre is 5-10% higher for diesel than petrol, depending upon the precise composition of the fuels, but that's because diesel has more energy per litre ("higher energy density") than petrol. In general, diesel vehicles put out less CO2 per km, because diesel engines are inherently more efficient, even after correcting for the higher energy density of the fuel. That's why we British diesel users are content to pay more per litre for the stuff. The increased NOx output of diesel engines is only a problem in areas of high pollution, it's really irrelevant everywhere else. What we really need in our cars is something like that Volkswagen software, but which changes the engine tune according to our location, prioritising pollution when in dense conurbations and the like, and prioritising efficiency everywhere else.

Re: Commuting - best lock for awkward fixing points?

29 January 2016 - 4:19pm
If all advise on a lock isn't working then your last bet if a bike is really needed is a sacrificial one. Something so pig ugly and cheap but roadworthy that any thief wouldn't want it anyway. A bso if need be. Even they can be made roadworthy with a bit of work.

Light, strong and secure locks just don't exist and probably never will.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 3:57pm
The main problem with fuel efficiency is aerodynamics. If you have a nice slippery car with a low drag coefficient, and an economical engine, you're quids in.

Drag coefficient of a Fiat 500 isn't good. 0.33cd I think.
This is because of its cutesy looks. Look is everything to the markets.

I bought the 500 for it's looks and the very interesting 2cyl engine - and the fact that it's zero VED - not for its outright economy.
Mind you, it's classed as a "city car" and in that environment, it's very good indeed.

Re: Commuting - best lock for awkward fixing points?

29 January 2016 - 3:33pm
There's a lot recommending beefy lock for leaving at work then lesser lock elsewhere. That doesn't work for me since work is not the highest risk area I tend to get leave my bike. This means the lock to be carried should be the better one. If that's the case there's very little benefit to leaving a second lock at work IMHO. I'd prefer to save money and get a compromise lock. I'm guessing silver rated might be good enough for medium/low risk areas.

I need to sort a new lock out soon since my cable lock has a twisted key that may fail soon. The D lock has only one key now. I don't trust a lock with one key. You never know when you'll lose it or it fails. I like backups.

At work I feel like I'm paranoid for wanting to use a good lock. Everyone else uses a thin cable lock. Some don't lock their bike up. Some just take it into the warehouse which is always left open and often has nobody in there. After the bikes got nicked last year rather brazenly in front of observers I have no faith in the idea of putting a bike out of sight. The likely toerags around work have no problem with just walking into fenced properties and even into open buildings. If caught they'll likely give a lot of chat back then just leave. Trouble is lots at work will know the bike thieves personally. They're not involved with them but come from the same area. If it was their bike they'd get it back with a few phone calls and a visit to someone. Communities sometimes know how to sort their own out if you follow me.

BTW I'm paranoid about getting a bike nicked again but the locking option needs to be easy and quick to use. I'm often getting to work just in time to start work on time. Anything taking time to get the bike just right to squeeze it into the tight D lock won't work.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 3:31pm
beardy wrote:
Probably a reflection on driving styles. How you feel about using the brakes and throttle, how long your journeys are and the type of terrain you drive on. If I was to take the lanes instead of the A and B roads my mpg would plummet, a big heavy diesel likes to cruise on straightish, flat roads with no interruptions.

No motorways or dual carriageways around here, plenty of hills and narrow lanes although not as hilly as Devon and Cornwall. The Mitsu will do 45 mpg all the time as long as you stay under 75, if you floor it and average higher than 75 it returns about 38mpg. It has quite an advanced engine with variable valve timing and very low emissions. In four years I have only done 18000 miles so I will be keeping it for a while. I am surprised tbe Fiat mpg varies so much, plenty of very short journeys up and down steep hills on the choke to the pub I guess?

Fitted a new battery to my wifes car this morning, what a struggle! Modern motor mechanics need to be contortionists with mega toolkits.

Al

Re: Commuting - best lock for awkward fixing points?

29 January 2016 - 3:22pm
Whatever you buy, you will find it is always half-an-inch too narrow to go around a street sign, or half-an-inch too short to get your wheel, frame, and solid object included! After ten minutes grunting and cursing your hands will be covered in oil and knuckles skinned.

What's worked for me (over twenty years since having a bike pinched *touches wood*) is an Abus Gold U-lock; I always make sure I fill it fully with wheel, frame and solid object being locked to because, although angle-grinders will go through anything, the most common attack on U-locks is £19.99 motorists' hydraulic bottle-jack (carried in a small bag) inserted into the lock and pumped up.

If locking for any short time, even to pick up a pint of milk, I will secure wheel, frame and fixed object. If leaving for any length of time, like a meeting, I'll do that plus put a cable around the other wheel (despite security pins). Or I'll use an Abus flexi lock on the other wheel. It's good to use two different types. The U-lock can be attacked with a bottle jack but a flexi lock can't be. The flexi can be snipped with a bold-croppers but the U-lock can't be - not easily anyway, you need a 42" croppers.

It's a long time since I've left a bike all day outside the office; I don't know if I would now, but the last time I did so, I left a mother of a chain permanently locked outside my employer's office.

If they come after your bike with a petrol driven angle-grinder, it is gone. No question. Nothing will hold up against that. I'm working on a building site at the moment and they use them to cut through reinforced concrete steelwork like going through butter.

The big problem in central London now is there simply aren't enough Sheffield Stands to go around. There are no longer any parking meters, and all buildings have "bicycles will be removed" signs (and they will, I've tested this). To combat this problem I now use my Brompton for most central London utility rides. It comes with me, into the shops, into the meetings. When it is in my hand, I know it isn't being robbed.

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 3:03pm
Yes. Very very true indeed.

Try driving round here.
If I reset the trip meter (engine warm!) at home and drive up the road to the next village a couple of miles away, I'll have done 15mpg.
Reset, then turn round and come back, and the mpg figure is off the scale at 99.9mpg but the brakes are on most of the way.

Try cycling round here!
Either in bottom gear struggling, puffing and panting up the hills ............ or 40mph flying back down.

It all takes its toll. Fuel, brakes, tyres. Get on a motorway and take your time, and there's hardly any effort.

70mph in the 500 will get 60mpg if you don't keep slowing and flooring it getting through busy motorway traffic. The car is good for 100mph+.
The Clio OTOH, will do about 40mpg at 70mph, but if I slow to 65mph or slightly less, I can get 50mpg out of it. Take it over the limit, and the fuel consumption plummets. By all accounts, it'll do 120mph.

Re: Snow bikes race through the Alps

29 January 2016 - 2:34pm
snow_bike2.jpgWho needs fat tyres? This is a common sight in Zermatt, which is car-free (kind-of).

Re: Downside to cheaper petrol.

29 January 2016 - 2:33pm
al_yrpal wrote:Mick F wrote:Yes, the Fiat500 is a Twinair 2cyl 85bhp and goes like a rocket. The CO2 is 99gms per Km, and that puts it into the zero VED category. We can get 60mpg out of it on a run on the motorway, but locally it returns just less than 40mpg.

The 1.6 16v Clio OTOH has 170gms per Km. It can give 55mpg on a motorway, but locally it's more like 35mpg ........... ie not a lot different economy to the Fiat500. It's the CO2 that's the difference.

Blimey! I had noticed that those Fiats streak along but those figures make it less economical than my Mitsu ASX Cat 5 diesel 1.8 4wd. I have never got 60 mpg. More like 45 mpg whatever.

Al

Probably a reflection on driving styles. How you feel about using the brakes and throttle, how long your journeys are and the type of terrain you drive on. If I was to take the lanes instead of the A and B roads my mpg would plummet, a big heavy diesel likes to cruise on straightish, flat roads with no interruptions.
 
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