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Thread: Cuda's Cars, v2.0

  1. #1361
    High Plains Luddite George's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    You guys should come to Colorado. There is practically no traffic law enforcement in the Denver metro area anymore. Sure, I'll see police cars at accidents and in school parking lots, but no one is getting pulled over for missing, expired, or covered license plates. I see this on many cars every single day I leave the house. And it doesn't seem to matter where or who. I see this on old crappy beaters that barely look roadworthy, brand new luxury cars, and everything in between.

    I assume it's to cheat on toll roads, express lanes, and red light cameras. And it pisses me off, as a (mostly) law-abiding motorist with an insured and legally registered car with legal plates that aren't covered up with tinted covers so dark you can't even tell if there's a license plate underneath.

    One mystery to me is seeing long-expired temporary plates that look legitimate, meaning the year, make, model, and color that's printed on them matches the car, but they'll be a year or even two beyond expiration sometimes. People have to pay to register a car to get those, so why not install the metal plates that are already paid for when they arrive in the mail a couple weeks later?

  2. #1362
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by neanderthal View Post
    "I pulled you over because you have no license plate."
    Me. Ok.
    "You need to have a license plate."
    Me. Yeah.
    "Why don't you have a license plate?"
    Me. Because I don't need to have a license plate.
    "In Texas you need to have a license plate."
    Me. Good thing I'm from California.

    Ended up with 3 cop cars including their sargent and me explaining that they have to honor motor vehicle California's laws, otherwise they could get tickets in California for having front windows tinted, or not having a front plate. Each patrol car coming with a new wiseass who tried to explain something new and relevant about the law to me.
    In 2018 I was down there for work for the first time, driving the "company" truck (actually a Kansas Geological Survey survey truck with 'OFFICIAL STATE VEHICLE' tags) a 12 year old 1 ton 4x4 dually with a bed completely full of equipment for an archaeological dig. I'm at the back of a 5ish vehicle caravan because "You'll never be able to find the place without help" (This is a lie, at this point I've given simple directions to the place probably a dozen times and never lost anybody). We all pass a border patrol checkpoint situated on the northbound lane, and in the rearview, I notice a texas ranger patrol car pull out behind us. I'm not worried, the person leading the caravan is the slowest driver known to man, but this ranger seems like he's really trying to catch up with us. Ranger fires up his light bar and start flashing my brights for attention as I pull over and the rest over the caravan disappears over a hill. The ranger eventually gets out of his car, puts his hat on and comes over to us, hand on holster.
    Normal cop conversation ensues with a fun new to me wrinkle - I honestly have no idea why I was pulled over.
    The ranger is acting all serious, and I'm thinking maybe there was an abduction in a similar gigantic white truck.
    "License, registration, and insurance?" I hand it all to him and he walks away with no more words. This is confusing for me.
    I start f#cking sweating because this is weird, and the caravan has not come back (also it's the desert in the summer and I have the window open).
    He comes back, still with hand on gun, "Do you know why I pulled you over?" "Not even slightly."
    "In the state of Texas, vehicles with dual rear wheels require mudflaps."
    "Huh? The truck and I are both from Kansas."
    "Doesn't matter to me, we've got requirements for vehicles on our roads."
    *HANDS ME A FIXIT TICKET* and walks away.

    I am gobsmacked.

    Had it been me, I'd have tried to fight it, but I talk to my boss and the fleet manager, they're both like "I dunno, I guess we'll put mudflaps on when you get home."
    So that combined with a number of other incidents over the past few years tells me Texas pigs can get f#cked.
    -Formerly Stabulator

  3. #1363
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2014

  4. #1364
    Now that I have some time at home I'm getting to work on some more things around here.

    BMW: Sold and in storage in the side yard. New owners pick it up in a few days and will drive it home to the greater Detroit area. I'm going to miss this supremely comfortable, easy-to-live-with car.

    MR2T: I wanted to take it out real bad (it's been a while) so I put the interior back together even though I wasn't sure I wanted to keep this stereo or this cheaper DIN pocket. The front end picked up a big vibration at highway speeds somehow that wasn't there before. I later switched to the race wheel/tire setup and all was good. Odd that one/both of the normal tires either picked up a flat spot that wouldn't go away, or lost a wheel weight just sitting in the garage.

    In general the ride quality is pretty bad now. Maybe a part of it is me getting older and being spoiled by more luxurious cars like the BMW and the Infiniti. But I think there's more to it than that. My suspicion has been the original rubber bushings have all hardened now. Replacements aren't available so I'm not sure what to do here. Poly is not the right idea for suspension arms that move, in my opinion. The other part might be the front shocks, they're Koni race shocks (8611s) and usually Konis are dead nuts reliable but it's possible with them spending so much time sitting at ride height that something in them is gummed up or something to where smaller pavement imperfections don't force the piston to move, and only larger forces do. Spitballing here. It'd be nice to find a spare pair of front struts to test this theory but I don't want to spend any real money on that.

    At a C&C event two weekends ago:
    And another yesterday (different group, with a more 80s/90s JDM flavor):

    G: I finally got around to detailing it properly. I haven't done the front bumper yet for time reasons. It's not easy to tell the car has been detailed because the light silver paint doesn't have much flop or flake to it. The whole car is just really stealth and under the radar. Kind of nice to have that capability, but I do miss having a car that looks more interesting. It will be cooler if I go forward with planned mods, however I'm still debating the pros and cons of the G sedan VS the Coupe and the 370Z.

    Pro tip: ensure all your brake caliper bleeder screws have their rubber caps on. The big Akebono calipers on the G37 Sport have two bleed screws per caliper - an inner and an outer. All of the outers on my car were missing the rubber caps, and all of them were clogged. I tried to unclog one by hand after fully removing it and it was just solid rust at the bottom. I'll be buying some new ones. Even just bleeding from the inner screws that worked, the brake is firmer than it was before, so my theory on the slightly long pedal travel was correct.

    The headlights really needed some work. The lenses weren't too bad, but of course I wanted to get rid of any yellowing or oxidation. The drivers side headlight was also showing a really wacky beam pattern that didn't work worth a darn. It has been hard to even know if my lights are on at night. Turns out, the bulb housing was broken off from its attachments inside the projector assembly. No wonder. The only thing I could come up with that would give me a working car again in a day or two was to glue the bulb assembly in place. It was hard to reach down in there with the glue, and the stuff I had on hand either didn't work at all (some Flex Seal white stuff that's supposed to have a quick initial set -- it didn't), or takes a while to start to harden (E6000). E6000 worked but in the process a lot of glue made its way through the projector housing and dripped into the inside of the large plastic lens that covers the whole assembly. I knew this was a risk, but I thought there was a good chance it wouldn't happen. So now this headlight works and aims properly, and I can see at night (woot). However the clear globs all over the inside of the lens have made it ugly. I'm going to try to source a used OEM lens that doesn't have crazing on it or broken tabs. Re-use my ballast and bulb. So far, a used headlight in decent shape is not easy to find. Actual buyer opinions of the various aftermarket "OEM style" lights are pretty poor, so I am avoiding that risk.

    The other headlight came out great, it wasn't broken it just had some yellowing and oxidation on the lens. Some wetsanding (600, 800, 1k, 3k), a pass with Griots FCC compound on my little 3" DA polisher, a final pass with M205 polish, a wipedown, and Meguiars Headlight Coating spray. Plus, new Morimoto 5000K D2S bulbs. More of a pure white compared to the slightly yellow OEM bulbs. A comparison shot of one lens finished and one not.

    Very happy I can see at night now! The difference is, shall we say, night and day.

    Brand loyalties aside I really do like the G better than the BMW overall, mainly because it's more of a sports car than the 328i is and the center stack tech is more up to date. It's got torque, it's got revs, it's got LSD, and it's got bushings that don't feel overly squishy. Steering feel is kind of a wash -they go about weight and feel very differently. While the BMW has heavier steering (which is great), the G has more feel through the wheel.

    Spyder: If I fits, I sits... Now that the rainy season is here it needs to be indoors.

  5. #1365
    Ask me about my bottom br FaultyMario's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014

  6. #1366
    Found a friend at the lot for the park last weekend.

    And now for a rant.

    Every ratchet I've used for decades now has had the switch oriented the same way, from my Dad's ancient Craftsman ratchets to my Husky Pro set I got when I set out on my own, and everyone's tools I've used. Couple years ago I bought a nice Crescent travel tool set which is great except the ratchet switches are the other way around. Ok, I can maybe see different brands doing it their own way I guess. But it's not labeled. I basically wasted my money on this $100+ set unless I find someone who wants to buy it as a starter set and doesn't mind the switch direction.

    But wait there's more. I just had to replace an old Craftsman 3/8" ratchet that wasn't ratcheting great anymore. So I bought 2 cool new ones both from Crafstman - a high tooth count straight ratchet for a small swing arc, and a stubby flex head ratchet in case I need that kind of versatility. One of them has a correctly oriented switch.... and one of them does not. [/agentsmith] And no label on either product to specify. This is pure asininity at its finest. This should, at mininum, be standardized across a brand, or each product should be clearly labeled so that you can get the right one.

    I want to replace the flex head stubby for one with a correct switch direction, but I also really like the handle shape on this one and the weighting of the flex head notches.

  7. #1367
    Member Member 21Kid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Orange, CA, USA
    Don't you give it a couple of twists before you use it each time anyway?

    I always double-check, even if I just switched it. LOL

  8. #1368
    Administrator dodint's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    I wait until I'm on the fastener deep in the engine bay and then curse when I don't have room to switch it without bringing it back out of the bay.

  9. #1369
    mAdminstrator Random's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Davis, CA, USA
    High miles, but comes with a hard top and is the right color:

  10. #1370
    Wow, nice. I saw a blue one drive by the other day, really got me thinking about how little I could spend painting mine in my garage and having it look decent enough... probably not worth it, but that is for sure the best color. Metallics really work for this car. The white is pretty meh, but if it's a track car I could spruce it up with some TRD colors...


    My memory works off of images, and 20+ years ago when I started working on cars I imprinted (in my mind) a "T" for tighten and an "L" for loosen at their respective positions on a ratchet switch. I don't want to go through the hassle of remembering which ratchets are the right way and which ones are opposite world. My brain is full already.

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