Hey! New Member from Georgia

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Puchrider
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Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby Puchrider » Tue Jul 14, 2015 1:43 pm

Hello all, this is my first post on this forum. I understand that the very first impression one makes is the longest lasting and most potent. I have constructed a summary about myself and my various interests. I hope that it is a good read and interesting for you.

My name is Drew. I am twenty years old and I enjoy various hobbies such as collecting and solving various Rubik’s Cube type puzzles, working on mopeds from the 70s and 80s, riding dirt-bikes, listening to and making music, and driving and maintaining vehicles.

Due to the fact that I have numerous hobbies and they are diverse, I can’t go into too much detail about each one. I don’t want this introduction to be an unnecessarily long autobiography.

Regarding puzzles, I believe I have about 150 +/- examples. I would like to provide an accurate count, but some are scattered about. Here is a picture of my collection:

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I will leave it at that; if anyone has any questions I’d be happy to answer them. However, I don’t want to bore anyone here (if I haven’t already).

Regarding mopeds, I enjoy getting them running, tuning them, and kitting them. My moped of choice is the Puch Maxi due to its reliability, availability, and after-market support. I’ve been able to get one up to about 52 MPH. This speed is very scary on a vehicle that was intended to go about half that. My attention is now devoted to trying to get it to run a stock-ish speed, but accelerate really well and go up the hills around where I live.

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Dirt-biking is another passion of mine. My favorite place to ride is on BLM land in rural Arizona. The dirt-bike of my choice is a 2003 YZ250F.

I also enjoy listening to and creating music. Bands from the 1960s and 1970s are my favorite. Recently, I’ve been listening to Progressive-rock era Genesis. I do my best to pick out the different tracks and play them; however, singing is NOT my forte.

That brings me to the hobby that this forum is centered upon: driving. Not just driving, but driving a vehicle equipped with three pedals on the floor (four if there is a parking brake). This might sound crazy, but I can honestly say that if someone offered me a new auto supercar or a stick Geo Metro, I would absolutely choose the Geo (provided I couldn’t sell the supercar). Like I said, I know it sounds crazy.

The rigid connection between human, machine, and the roadway is something I really have a passion for. I am even enrolled in a truck driving class so I can drive a stick AND make money doing it. How can one be happier if they are getting paid to do something they enjoy? At this point, we are just doing classwork and I haven’t even driven one yet; I know I will enjoy the challenge of maneuvering a large vehicle and operating the un-synchronized, numerously geared transmission. At this point, I REALLY hope I can work for a company that maintains their fleet with manual tractors. In addition, I am also receiving a degree in Anthropology and Forensics in a couple of years. It would be great if I can be both a truck driver and forensic anthropologist.

I like driving all types of cars from different makes. I’m not one to say one brand is better than another. I believe all manufactures have their strengths and weaknesses as well as good and bad models. MY daily is a 1995 BMW e36 325is. I also like driving my grandmother’s old 1985 BMW e30 325e. I’ve made a few cosmetic enhancements. Here’s some pictures of it:

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I’m a huge advocate of systematic trip planning and fuel management. I like hypermiling. I’m not a person who throws the car out of gear and flies down a hill. I believe it is best to stay in gear and apply the throttle so it essentially feels like it’s coasting while also maintaining a safe speed. I suppose I’m a "spirited hypermiler." I still accelerate fast sometimes and have fun, but I’m also attuned to looking far ahead and adjusting my throttle so I minimize stopping and unnecessary brake use. My newly acquired driving habits have made a positive impact on my mileage, which I track on fuelly.

In addition, I like driving Lincoln Mark VIIIs. Unfortunately, my left foot gets bored on this one because they are ,unfortunately, auto. I would really like to swap mine to a manual one day. Luckily, my father and I are working on doing just that to another Mark VIII. Here’s a write-up on the ongoing project and the link:



http://www.lincolnvscadillac.com/forum/ ... p-Progress

"There has always been something about personal luxury cars that has captivated me. They are able to offer the perfect combination of performance and comfort. In addition, they aren't overly common like their sport/muscle counterparts. Growing up, my father had a 1990 35th Anniversary T-Bird Super-Coupe. I remember it fondly; when I was 18, two years ago, I had a Super-Coupe of my own. It was a 1995 AND a 5-speed. Such a combo is quite sought after and I knew I had to have the first one I drove. My lack of patience when car searching is what caused me to get rid of it only a few months later. It was rusty, had an engine vibration, and had a shot second gear. Although it had these issues, it was a fun high-school car. I learned a valuable lesson regarding being patient and waiting for a car that doesn't have major issues, if any. Recently, my father was considering getting a Mustang (Saleen, Shelby, or Cobra variant). On my way to school and back, I see at least twenty Mustangs. It occurred to me that Mustangs are FAR too common and can be strong "cop-magnets."

I started to think about what type of car is sporty and not necessarily a cop Magnet. Among the ones I thought of were Monte Carlo, Riviera, and Eldorado. To me, the downfall of these cars (the model years I was considering) is that they were all front-wheel-drive. I had to re-think. It seems GM had failed to make a personal luxury car that appealed to me. I then thought about Ford and what they had to offer. I remember the Lincoln Mark series and determined that the Mark VIII would be an excellent car to get. It is RWD, doesn't attract cops, and has a relatively powerful engine. I then narrowed the search further to only include 1997 and 1998 LSC models. However, Lincoln (Ford) never offered a Mark VIII with a manual transmission. Luckily, thanks to the internet, I was able to find threads regarding the conversion. Because it was possible to swap out the auto in favor of a manual tranny, my father and I decided to get a Mark VIII.

We looked around on Craigslist and my father stumbled upon a yellow Mark VIII. This wasn't just an LSC, but also a Collector's Edition. (Obviously the yellow paint detracts from value for some, and probably, most people). But there was a reason this Lincoln was yellow, it was formally owned by the barefoot water-skier Banana George Blair. We went to look at it; the paint appeared of good quality, but it wasn't applied in the best manner. Evidence of over-spray was obvious and, upon opening the hood, you can see the original color of the car: Cordovan. However, even with these cosmetic issues, the car was straight and had roughly 50k on it. We purchased the car and drove it from Sarasota home to Atlanta that night. While driving it home, I realized why this car appealed to many people online. It was smooth, comfortable, and quite spacious. The Florida/Georgia border was reached within the first few hours; the “Banana Car” was approaching its new home.

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Converting a car from an auto to a manual tranny is quite an ambitious build. It is one thing to convert a car that was made in both transmission types. However, it is ANOTHER to swap a manual into a car that was NEVER offered in such a configuration. We decided it would be a good idea and a wise investment to acquire a parts-car, solely for the interest of part-redundancy.

We located the perfect car on Craigslist to source parts from. It was a 1997 Toreador Red LSC, it was in good condition with around 80k on it. It even came with nice “octa-star” wheels. Ultimately, this car wasn’t used to acquire parts from. It was simply too nice. The only major problems were: the blend-door, leaking front bags, dirty oil, and a dent in the front passenger side quarter-panel (the majority of which was removed using soapy water and a plunger). This car had no problem driving home, just as the “banana-car” didn’t six days earlier.

I drove the red Mark VIII to college for a couple of weeks. The only issue I ever had was a flat-tire. Luckily, I had a bicycle pump and was able to park with the wheel in a position where it wouldn’t leak. In the meantime, while I was driving the red Mark VIII (now known as sausage), my father started to prepare the Banana Car for the manual swap. We found a TR3650 tranny in Macon. We drove down and picked it up. It was out of a 2008 Mustang GT. It came with the Hurst-shifter, a Mustang pedal assembly (brake and clutch), a flywheel, and the clutch and pressure-plate. (The Mustang pedal assembly would take too much work to mount to a Mark VIII we ultimately decided.) That same day, we picked up a 1989 Cougar XR7 5-speed parts car. Off of it, we could use the 7-spoked XR7 wheels and the pedal assembly. (We actually had a 5-speed SC/XR7 pedal-assembly arriving in the mail, but an extra set wouldn’t hurt).

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The Banana Car is now (mostly) ready for the swap, the only major component we need is the drive-shaft. At this point, the front seats, center console, door panels (to address electrical woes), and hood have been removed. The dash has been loosened, but a few wires need to be disconnected before it can be completely removed. That is the progress as of this point. Updates are to follow, thanks for taking the time to read!"

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*Notice the paint fade

If you visit the link, you can see the progress that took place after this introduction.

That is pretty much myself in a nutshell (oddly enough I haven’t used that term before). I hope this has been an interesting read. Can’t wait to get involved in the community!
"If you're out of gear, you're out of control" - Johnny Mock

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Banana Tranny Swap: https://sites.google.com/site/bananalincolnmark8/home

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theholycow
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby theholycow » Tue Jul 14, 2015 3:52 pm

Welcome. Are you theholycow v2.0? Converting an aging, large, RWD luxury car that wasn't offered with manual, writing novel-length posts, hypermiling, etc. Here's what happens 15 years in your future: You eventually learn to write shorter posts that don't include as much information, and you don't get tired of driving what you like.
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AHTOXA
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby AHTOXA » Tue Jul 14, 2015 4:03 pm

I got a feeling the OP is going to fit in just fine around here, with a bunch of oddballs that most of us are.
'16 Ecoboost F150
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'17 Trek Fuel EX8 27.5+
'08 Giant Trance 1 (old school 26'er)

Puchrider
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby Puchrider » Tue Jul 14, 2015 5:11 pm

Haha I will check out your threads. I've been poking around a bit. Over time my threads will become more concise. I just wanted to make my introduction as informative as I could without putting anyone to sleep. ...don't get me started on what cars I think should be offered in manual!
"If you're out of gear, you're out of control" - Johnny Mock

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Banana Tranny Swap: https://sites.google.com/site/bananalincolnmark8/home

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watkins
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby watkins » Tue Jul 14, 2015 8:19 pm

But do you like turtles?
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six
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby six » Tue Jul 14, 2015 9:23 pm

Welcome! and
Puchrider wrote:...don't get me started on what cars I think should be offered in manual!

Well, what cars do you think should be offered in manual? :lol:
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2015 Heron White Chevrolet SS Sedan 6MT

Puchrider
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby Puchrider » Tue Jul 14, 2015 9:55 pm

watkins wrote:But do you like turtles?


Turtles are cool creatures, I saved one from getting hit by a car
"If you're out of gear, you're out of control" - Johnny Mock

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Banana Tranny Swap: https://sites.google.com/site/bananalincolnmark8/home

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watkins
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby watkins » Tue Jul 14, 2015 9:57 pm

That'll do.

Welcome to our special chunk of interwebs!
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Puchrider
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby Puchrider » Tue Jul 14, 2015 10:03 pm

six wrote:Welcome! and
Puchrider wrote:...don't get me started on what cars I think should be offered in manual!

Well, what cars do you think should be offered in manual? :lol:


Hmmm... well all should have been, but I wish more personal luxury cars were. Crown Vic, Town Car, and any panther platform would've been cool. Chrysler Prowler definitely should've been. Not only should the late Riviera, Monte Carlo, and El Dorado been manual, but also RWD (as I said on the Lincoln and Cadillac forum). It would've nice if the Mark VIII was offered in a stick, but it's somewhat good they weren't since it will make ours more special in the end.
"If you're out of gear, you're out of control" - Johnny Mock

Image

Banana Tranny Swap: https://sites.google.com/site/bananalincolnmark8/home

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six
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby six » Tue Jul 14, 2015 10:56 pm

Yeah, the Crown Vic would've been nice, or at the very least, they should've at least offered it in the Marauder. A huge sedan with a big V8 and a stick? Doesn't get much nicer than that. Which is why I drive what I drive now actually, haha. It would've been great to have a stick in my CVPI back when I had it, though.
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2015 Heron White Chevrolet SS Sedan 6MT

IMBoring25
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby IMBoring25 » Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:18 am

Those aren't unprecedented conversions.

There was a (brutally expensive) kit to put a six-speed in the 94-96 Impala SS and Bondurant put together a fleet of Vics with Mustang Cobra drivetrains to use as instructor cars at their driving school. I seriously thought about trying to find one of those when they sold them off. There are also a handful of people who've converted various years of Vics spread around various forums. I keep thinking I'd look into converting my '89 Grand Marquis if anything goes expensively wrong with the engine or tranny, but it keeps not giving me an excuse.

...But this conversation is just begging for a, "Manual all the cars!!!" meme...

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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby potownrob » Wed Jul 15, 2015 12:54 am

theholycow wrote:Welcome. Are you theholycow v2.0? Converting an aging, large, RWD luxury car that wasn't offered with manual, writing novel-length posts, hypermiling, etc. Here's what happens 15 years in your future: You eventually learn to write shorter posts that don't include as much information, and you don't get tired of driving what you like.
:lol:

AHTOXA wrote:I got a feeling the OP is going to fit in just fine around here, with a bunch of oddballs that most of us are.
+1

I'm still in shock that the OP thought we would expect him to write a college level detailed presentation of his hobbies and views on things. OP for sure will fit in great here...as long as he has a sense of humor :wink: 8) :twisted:
BUT DEM FAHGLEITZ!! :shock:

For Pizza!!!!

Puchrider
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby Puchrider » Wed Jul 15, 2015 8:51 am

Feel like I'm fitting in already :D

There's just so many cars that should've been stick. I tend to gravitate towards cars that aren't as mainstream. I'd take a Thunderbird Turbo Coupe or Fox-body Mercury Cougar XR7 Turbo over a Mustang any day. If I could buy a car brand new (which I never would), I'd get a Pearl-White Mustang Eco-Boost. Can't say I've ever ridden in one, or even a Mustang made since 2005, but I like the look and concept. The boosted four-banger is reminiscent to the Cougar and T-Bird from the 80s. It even has the same displacement. I have a soft spot for Pearl-White. I've never had a car with that color, but it looks amazing and looks like it would stay clean. I'd just have to get a custom paint job, since Ford doesn't offer it for the Eco-Stang.

Can't get much more Oddball than this:

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"If you're out of gear, you're out of control" - Johnny Mock

Image

Banana Tranny Swap: https://sites.google.com/site/bananalincolnmark8/home

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theholycow
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby theholycow » Wed Jul 15, 2015 10:03 am

IMBoring25 wrote:...But this conversation is just begging for a, "Manual all the cars!!!" meme...

Image
MANUAL ALL THE CARS!!!
1980 Buick LeSabre 4.1L 5MT

Put your car in your sig!

Learn to launch/FAQs/lugging/misused terms: meta-sig
watkins wrote:Humans have rear-biased AWD. Cows have 4WD

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theholycow
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Re: Hey! New Member from Georgia

Postby theholycow » Wed Jul 15, 2015 10:09 am

Puchrider wrote:Can't get much more Oddball than this:

[img]http://ohreally.mnsi.net/coug%20012.jpg[img]

You've found one of the very few cars I've ever disliked having a near-vertical rear window. It just doesn't work with the angles on the rest of the car, and I generally tend to like vertical rear windows. They did it just so the car could have some way to be different from the Thunderbird, I guess.
1980 Buick LeSabre 4.1L 5MT

Put your car in your sig!

Learn to launch/FAQs/lugging/misused terms: meta-sig
watkins wrote:Humans have rear-biased AWD. Cows have 4WD


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