[rant]Vehicle warning displays plus a Christmas mission[rant]

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Sac Arrow, Dec 25, 2016.

  1. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Last year, at about this time in the morning, I took off, on my Kawasaki Concours motorcycle, to perform a Christmas mission which as long tradition that predates the Druid occupation of England and possibly before the birth of Christ himself. A mission that absolutely could not result in failure.

    The mission was to find an open coffee shop that had mocha. That is a rare bird around here. Not a non-existent one, just a rare one.

    Of course I'm not going to pay $$$$ for a shop to dismount my tires because the TPMS sensors have weak batteries. The display console, which shows every parameter useful to the biking world, and then some, like fuel level and gear position, is now dominated by an alternating flashing "TPMS Battery Low" indication that takes over the ENTIRE display, and it's annoying as hell. The only way to get it to stop is to use both hands to simultaneously push two buttons on the display (very dangerous when you are moving and not great even at a stop.)

    Why.

    Fast forward. It's f****g cold outside. I elect not to perform this mission on the motorcycle as roadway ice is not out of the question. So I fire up a rental Nissan Sentra. There is a little informative display thingie on the dash on the instrument cluster. It says "Low Temperature Alert." That's all it says. It says that if the temperature goes below 36 degrees. I does not go off until the temperature rises above 36 degrees. There is a good portion of the country (the world, actually, on both hemispheres) where the temperature will not rise above 36 degrees for several months at a time. I KNOW it's f*****g cold outside. It's not like the car must be operated in a different manner when the temperature falls below 36 degrees. I just don't get it.

    Why.

    By the way, the donut shop operated by the Mexican family that is normally open on Christmas day was closed. I fear they may have been deported. They have provided Christmas day donut and mocha service for years. I drove halfway around town and found a 'Power Mart' all lit up. This was around 5:45. The dude inside unlocked the door to bring in a stack of newspapers and informed me that it wouldn't be open until 6:30. I thanked the man for the information and my assessment of the place was that I couldn't get a proper mocha there anyway, save for a premix cold Starbucks blend, but that's cheating.

    Then I saw the 7-11. Those are always open. I went inside, swaggered up to the hot coffee section, and saw the machine.

    The Machine.

    Yeah, the same machine they used in the donut place, except it was designed to be used by people that don't know how to use these machines. Like me. The closest thing they had to a mocha was a caramel machado. I know it's macciado or some crap like that but I'm trying to keep this aviation related. And by the way I said carmel, not caramel. I wasn't sure i fully technically fulfilled my mission as I couldn't drink it on the premise (I guess I could have, I just didn't) so I drove back home in a big loop. Then I noticed the Starbucks.

    The Starbucks.

    Yes, all the Starbucks in my hood are closed today. But this was a new one. It was open. I was remiss. But was I? I was drinking my carmel Machado, which cost exactly $1.99, when I could have gotten a Super Venti Bento Caramelito Machadito Mocha of the same size, and the same taste, for about seven bucks. No, I prevailed. It pained me to see the poor saps inside the shop get tazed by the prices, but then again they could afford to feed their big SUV's and plus they are probably upside down on their home mortgage and plus they probably own a boat too.
     
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  2. Everskyward

    Everskyward Administrator Management Council Member

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    But what kind of socks were you wearing?
     
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  3. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I am actually wearing gym socks right now. And the gym is closed.
     
  4. GRG55

    GRG55 En-Route

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    But are they $1.99 six-to-a-pack gym socks, or are they virgin cotton, lifetime elastic, padded sole, reinforced toe, seven buck designer gym socks?
     
  5. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    They are actually Nike logo ankle length socks, several years old. I really should get a new stock. I don't remember what I paid for them. They weren't $1.99, but they weren't seven bucks a pack either. The set of socks is on it's third pair of gym shoes.
     
  6. rtk11

    rtk11 Line Up and Wait

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    First, if you can ditch the TPMS and go with one of these, that might make thing easier: https://www.amazon.com/KKmoon-Motorc.../dp/B0147W88XM

    Those built-in TPMS seemed nifty at the time, but it's one more thing to add to electronic miseries on motorcycles. One reason I sold my Ducati ST3 years ago. I have a buddy with a BMW R1200GS that constantly reminds him of an ABS error when none exist. Yes, another sensor failure. But like you, he has to live with the blinking and nagging light that he now ignores (but blinks away anyway.)

    I'm guessing there's not donut shot run by an Asian family in town? If there is, there are donuts available. :p (And for those that might get a little bent and missed my other post, I'm Asian, and you know you can't deny what I wrote to be true...)

    And dude - you're in OAKLAND. You should have PLENTY of Asian owned business around you! :eek::p

    As for coffee... if all's you've got is a 7-11 and you can't operate the coffee machine, go to the refrigerated section to get a Starbucks mocha cappuccino, pour it into an appropriately sized coffee cup, and put it in the microwave for 45 seconds. When in dire straights, all solutions are acceptable. :p:D

    But in the end, it looks like you did prevail. Well done. Pricing goes up tomorrow. :p
     
  7. jesse

    jesse Administrator Management Council Member

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    Replacing the TPMS battery can be done with the wheels on the bike and the tire still mounted. A strong Irwin clamp (or two) can compress the tire enough to break the bead and get enough room to pull the sensor. Replace battery, remove clamp, refill with air.
     
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  8. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    True, although I shuttle between Oakland and the Central Valley and I am unfortunately in the latter at the moment. You're absolutely right. Oakland has a predominance of Asian owned donut and coffee shops (as Berkeley has the Indian owned businesses.)

    I'm sure that's the case. More work than I want to deal with.
     
  9. asicer

    asicer Pattern Altitude

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    The low temp alert is useful if you start your drive from a warmer climate and then transition to a cold one. I believe the intention is to warn you to the possibility of road ice but it's also useful if you have summer tires and unexpectedly get caught in a cold snap not to go crazy on the G forces. On my car it dings and then goes away on command. I'd probably rant too if there was no way to make it go away.
     
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  10. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    Go to ebay, buy 2 used tpms sensors for your bike, put some new batteries in them, stick them in your pocket when you ride. Low battery message problem solved.
     
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  11. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That isn't a half bad idea. I can even keep them in the storage box. And swap them out for the old ones the next time I change tires.

    Wait. No. now I have a new problem.

    TPMS Alert Low Pressure.
     
  12. PaulS

    PaulS Final Approach

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    There is no pleasing you is there. .... :p
     
  13. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    GM trucks alternate between showing you the OAT and "ICE" whenever the temp falls below 37F... because apparently we are all retards.
     
  14. flhrci

    flhrci En-Route

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    Mine does that but I thought it was for other reasons.
     
  15. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    my car has a low temp alert, the temperature flashes "37" for a little while when the temp passes through on the way down. But it doesn't continue to flash, it stops on its own after 5-10 seconds.
     
  16. chartbundle

    chartbundle Line Up and Wait

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    My new Chevrolet pickup only displays an ice warning on startup, since it's in a garage it means I don't usually see it. The other day I really only noticed the temperature had dropped while driving when the traction control kicked in.
     
  17. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Wife/Mother In Law emotional temperature warning? LOL...
     
  18. MAKG1

    MAKG1 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    SAC was in SAC. About once every other year, there is a 50+ car pileup on the I-80 causeway because the drivers there ARE idiots around ice.

    We've had a couple of droolers here this year, who seemed to think full speed on an icy mountain road was a good idea.
     
  19. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well I discovered, as I was waiting for the defroster to kick in, that the display could be cleared with one touch on the steering wheel. Whateva. It's not a bad little econobox. I probably would have rather had a Corolla but it works fine. A car is a car.

    I did get out on the motorcycle yesterday for no reason other than to maintain a battery charge, and found that if the TPMS is completely dead, there is no error code. Once the tires warm up enough so that last residual charge kicks the sensors in to action, you get the error again. Normally it kicks in immediately when you start riding, then goes off when the tires get warm enough. Yesterday they were off for several miles, then the warning came and never did clear.

    Heated vests and grip warmers are da bomb.
     
  20. N747JB

    N747JB Final Approach

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    Well, you are driving a GM truck!! :D:D:D
     
  21. SkyDog58

    SkyDog58 Final Approach

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    You folks sure do have some fancy high tech rides. :)
     
  22. RJM62

    RJM62 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Actually, unless you have winter tires, the OAT should affect how you drive. Even aside from pressure, the traction of non-winter tires degrades rapidly in cooler temperatures. How cool depends on the particular rubber formulation, but most authorities place it around 45 F, on average. Conversely, winter tires get "grabby" in warmer weather, which also degrades handling.

    I've gotten to the point that I can almost tell the temperature just from how my car is handling. The difference can be quite stark on a day like yesterday, when my OAT started and finished at 19 F, but rose as high as 52 F at around 13:00 when I was downstate. I suppose on a bike the difference would be even more noticeable.

    Rich
     
  23. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Hahaha. Ford guys. I haven't got anything against Ford. Have I ever told you I got that GMC because the Ford lot was overflowing with them? :) The bad years when gas was pushing $4 was a wonderfully good time to shop for trucks. :)

    2017 is the year on the spreadsheet where the ownership costs fall below $100/month on it, amortized over the time I've had it. Of course it's been paid off for years and years, that's just the amortized number. Seeing those fall into double digits on any of our vehicles always makes me grin. Not bad, owning a loaded SUV for cheaper than you can lease an econobox for. It's been a workhorse. It towed (barely) an 8,000 lb loaded bumper hitch trailer a few times, but I wouldn't say it liked doing it.

    Love what Ford is doing with the SuperDuty but if I bought one today, I'd have to drive it for 20 years to get it down to $250/month in ownership costs. (Roughly. I assumed a $60,000 truck.) If I sold both of my trucks to partially pay for it, 14 years.

    But that F350 MaxTow sure is a nice truck! Don't think I'll need the F450. Hehehe. DRW is mandatory now that I've towed with one. Won't ever go back to SRW.

    Frankly I think the truck makers are missing a market -- I don't need 900 ft/lbs of torque, I don't have that today and I tow a 12,500 lb trailer. There's a mid power range that's being totally missed by the "towing/HP/torque wars". People financing trucks want the big numbers. I buy my vehicles outright.

    Diesel, pulls at least 20,000 lbs, crew cab, long bed... I'm a happy camper. Literally. Ha. The Dodge will be the solution for that until it needs new steering again. By then, doing the track bar and all the components again won't be worth it.
     
  24. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    So you're saying they have a higher density of retards there? ;) I know, it's hard to remember that water freezes. Nobody has ever seen that. LOL! I'd be inclined to agree with you considering how most of them that move here, "drive" in snow, though.

    Our friends slightly east of us on the plains where they got snow instead of rain, posted photos of the *six* vehicles in the ditch that they stopped to help yesterday on Christmas Day, and the one Jeep that lost its argument with the ditch, crossed that, crossed a dirt frontage road to the road they were on, leaving dig marks the whole way where the tires were locked up trying to bite into the gravel below the 3" of snow, and made it all the way to the telephone pole it wanted to argue with.

    Takes a lot of excess speed and energy to go that far off the road. Someone was incredibly dumb. Their description said the female driver was crying about her Jeep.

    Drivers of all were fine. The only good news considering it was Christmas Day after all.

    It's fun to watch them bouncing off of things though... little stupid ping pong balls with roll cages and airbags. The Smart cars will even fly if they're hit hard enough. :) Just give them some room and they tend to automatically get out of your way by ending up in a ditch.

    Then you decide if they look okay and whether or not you have time to stop. Out here, we'll stop. Sheriff and fire are a half hour away minimum, and one might need to help them stop bleeding or keep them still until a backboard arrives.

    In town, they're on their own. Plenty of emergency services folks headed their way.

    Too bad they don't underwrite vehicle insurance like they do aviation insurance and charge the high risks more money by their "hours logged on snow".

    Our insurance keeps going up here to cover all the stupid people.
     
  25. N747JB

    N747JB Final Approach

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    Nate, you know I am just messing with you, but you're right these new Super Duties are BEASTS I am driving one for the first time in 4 or 5 years, I love the room in the cab compared to the older body styles, the power and MGP is great too! I hope you guys had a good Christmas! Sorry about your Broncos, Go Falcons!! :D
     
  26. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Oh definitely knew that! I was just providing background on why I can't convince myself to blow big money on a new diesel toy. I do watch a lot of truck reviews and videos and dream of owning such a monster though, but it'll have to wait until I have $60,000 burning a hole in my pocket with nothing else to spend it on. Haha.

    Great Christmas. Only downside this year was the youngest sister couldn't make it up from Texas. We'll have to wander down that way and see her this year I suppose. She's busy doing the serious boyfriend thing and felt obligated to hang out when his grandfather passed away, so maybe we'll see nuptial type announcements from down south there someday? Who knows?

    Knew the Broncos were done a few weeks ago. Once the Chiefs scored first, Karen (more of a rabid football fan than even I am) refused to watch any more and went downstairs to watch her British midwife show on Amazon or Netflix or whatever. Haha.

    She has first world problems today. She says she ran out of Swiffer pads and she's gone into "crazed post-holiday housecleaning" mode. LOL.

    I think I should retreat to the hangar. Got stuff to do over there. Haha.
     
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  27. Unit74

    Unit74 En-Route

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    Regarding the 7/11 mochilattechino machine.......

    The real pros know that after you left go of the button, you must, I repeat must pull out. The machines are designed to flush the delivery straw with hot water after each use. So you get like a shot of nothing but water and your sugar high gets harshed a bit.

    You did pull out, didn't you? o_O
     
  28. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well, the instructions on the machine said to release the button once the cup is 2/3rds full. The problem was I got a cup that was 2/3rds full. So I kept short cycling the machine until my cup was full. Whether or not I got an extra shot of hot dilution water I don't know, but it all seemed to work out. Still, I'll take the parting hot shot over the Starf*****youinthe****ss pricing guideline.