[aprssig] APRS in a Car

Fred Atkinson, WB4AEJ fred at wb4aej.com
Fri Jan 27 08:33:58 EST 2006

    Well, shouldn't they have both (always on and switched) types of ports?
During the car phone (analog) days, shouldn't they have been designing with
the assumption that many people would be installing those phones in their
cars?  But they didn't.

    The car manufacturers do not seem to think about the fact that some
folks want to add their own equipment to their vehicles.  They just put on
what they want to.

    This attitude particular burns me.  I am one of those who doesn't like
power steering (in smaller cars) or automatic transmission (period).  When I
go car shopping, that makes for some interesting problems.  A lot of people
don't realize that a power steering unit puts several horsepower of load
onto your engine that could be better utilized.  On a small car with a
smaller engine, that's a big difference in performance.

    Once I special ordered a Mustang because they dealer promised me he'd
get it without power steering and with a stickshift (none of the dealers in
town had such a car on their lot).  When I took possession of it, I
discovered (contrary to what he promised) that there was indeed power
steering on the car.  I made them convert it to rack and pinion steering as
he promised.  Don't believe those dealers when they say they will special
order it to get it a certain way for you.  They will change anything after
you sign the papers and they have no scruples about it.

    The conversion made a big difference (positively) in the performance of
the car.  At a later time, a Ford motor mechanic test drove it then got out
and complemented me on how extremely well my power steering was working.  He
almost choked when I told him.  It was very sluggish and unresponsive before
that garbage came off my vehicle.  Afterwards, it had plenty of pickup and
handled very well.

    But the dealer did it so cost consciously that there was a big mounting
ring and a dual pulley that should have been changed to a single one.  I
ended up spending about another hundred dollars to get that fixed (he
wouldn't do it on his own).  I didn't like the fact that it looked like a
Saturday afternoon mechanic had ripped it out.  But it looked good after I
spent another hundred bucks out of my own pocket to clean up the mess that
dealer caused.

    All that pain would have been spared if they would think about what the
customer wants instead of what they want to give him.

    Perhaps that kind of attitude is why Ford is closing all those plants.
For the last seventeen years, I've driven two Hondas.  They both had
stickshifts and rack and pinion steering.  I didn't have to special order
them, either.  My currrent Honda is ten years old and still going strong.



----- Original Message -----
From: <AA3JY at Winlink.org>
To: <aprssig at lists.tapr.org>
Sent: Friday, January 27, 2006 8:03 AM
Subject: [aprssig] APRS in a Car

> Dave wrote:
> A lot of modern cars do not have "Always on" power ports any more.  It
> seems to depend on the philosophy of the individual maker.  The Honda
> Accord I have now does not.  Other cars I've had in the last 5 years
> have..
> ================
> You think that is bad...
> BMW's single-wire, CAN-bus electrical system, which greatly reduces the
number of wires used in the main harness and dramatically reduces weight and
complexity.  Part of the CAN-bus is a new fully electronic instrument
cluster featuring Info-Flatscreen for additional system information
available at a glance.
> One would wonder if RF will have any affect on this new system...
> Regards,
> Clay AA3JY
> (via WL2K)
> _______________________________________________
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> aprssig at lists.tapr.org
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