A while back we did a review of a Silverado HD Crew Cab with a short box, which we called "Clifford" for the big red dog, since the truck was red.
While driving around with Clifford, I was reminded of another crew cab a few decades earlier, in a previous life when I was selling trucks.
Here is the story...
This individual owns a building maintenance, snow removal, landscaping company, and requires a truck to perform several applications from transporting a crew of workers to various sites, hauling materials in the bed, to plowing snow with a 9' plow.
The snow plowing is the most important function since he has contracts to clear several sizable parking lots, usually during the night. The truck has to be "idiot proof", it will be operated by different individuals as the need and scheduling develops.
The major points that were agreed upon...
> You need a crew cab (extended cabs did not exist).
> You need a 1 ton, you plan on putting a good amount of weight in the 8' box, and you will have constant weight in the box during winter.
> A 9' plow is on the bigger side of plows, and clearing parking lots involves more pushing than a residential entrance + to make it idiot proof and easier the truck will have an automatic transmission. Back in the day it was a THM 400 3 speed automatic.
> Engine not many options a venerable 350 with a 4 barrel carburetor.
> Axles ratios 4.56's to make it easier to push snow, work the torque converter less, keep the transmission oil temperature down.
> Double gas tanks to alleviate chasing gas stations in the middle of the night while plowing.
> Tires 9.50 x 16.5 tubeless, wider for better traction.
The truck is ordered and arrives from the factory in late summer, ready for the winter season. Its late summer this fellow decides to go on a few fishing trips with his new truck, and friends.
Obvious that this truck does not go fast enough on the highway, and he is pouring an obscene amount of gas in both tanks. Just imagine the comments from his friends....
Calls, and visits me, complaining bitterly that I sold him the wrong truck, I'm the truck expert and this truck is useless, besides using an obscene amount of gas.
I said to him the truck is supposed to push snow with a 9' plow, not go fishing "I sold you a truck to push snow, not to go fishing", and proceeded to tell him that if the truck did not push snow as I told him, and he expected then he can tell me that I sold him the wrong truck.
You can imagine that after his friends made sarcastic comments about his new truck on the fishing trips, he was anxious to discover the snow plowing capabilities of the truck.
The next phone call from him "You were right never had a truck that could work with a 9' plow like this one, its so strong that one of my operators ripped a tire off a rim trying to make a mound of snow". My question "How hard are you working that truck?"....his reply "This truck is doing a night shift and day shift (16-18 hours)".
My comment "I'm glad that its making money for you, and pushing snow better than your expectations".
Make yourself comfortable...yes Christmas is lurking on the horizon. The cappuccino and biscotti are served.
Last Friday we went to the Toronto Motorcycle Show, we did our usual photo shoot. We were surprised to realise that its the 4th year that we are covering the bike show. It was encouraging to see an upbeat atmosphere, and more visitors, both positive signs for the industry. As well as several interesting bikes, the photo gallery in case you missed it is...here.
Remember...we shared our thoughts on BMW "blinking" in Canada...here. We were more than a little surprised, although we understand the reasoning of Mercedes "blinking" in the US, an opinion from TTAC on M-B blinking...here.
Remember the old tales of always carrying some "extras" when you travel in winter, like extra blanket, boots, gloves, and so on...some folks this past week had a reality check how wind and drifting snow can quickly alter driving conditions. Wonderful to see people reach out a helping hand to help other folks, its a wonderful overture to the Christmas season when folks care enough to help other folks.
If the auto blogosphere could use some fine tuning, which is normal. The moto blogoshpere is under a rock, and one wonders why the motorcycle business is challenged in Canada. We went to the motorcycle show, one of the more prominent manufacturer had one of their latest offering on a display stand, there were several individuals with shirts infested with logo (they must work there) circling the bike. They see that someone wants to take a photo of the bike, they see that this individual has a media tag, you think they would move to facilitate the photo, or approach the individual and acknowledge "something"....."anything"...a Good Morning would work.
Seems the moto industry in Canada has forgotten that they need to create customers, avail themselves of all the targeted exposure they can get, and perhaps start to have an understanding of social media. The majority of manufacturers with a few exceptions behave as of they ran out of bikes with customers lined up clamoring for more....folks its 2011 and you desperately need to sell bikes in Canada! You knew that...
The usual old race cars...here.
Our friend @mavric35 who recently got married in OZ had a Testarossa on his wedding day.
For some reason it got me thinking about an experience with a Testarossa a few years ago, could be more than a few years, it was in the other century (20th), anyways a few years ago.
I think it was a 1987 car, here is the story...
It was a Testarossa with a spotty provenance, cracked leather in the interior (black), still a 12 cylinder (running a little subdued), still lethal in 3rd gear (most folks would get in trouble in 3rd on surface streets).
Surface street, first, second (high up the revs), engine not smooth, then 3/4 of the way up the tach in 3rd (focusing on the performance of the engine), and I need to do a right hand 90 degree turn in an entrance, the turn is coming real fast, the engine was stumbling a bit in the upper RPM ranges.
Going how fast? Absolutely no clue...
I get obstinate to make the turn (could have kept on going straight), progressively applying more pressure on the brake pedal, until the front wheels lock up, the acrid smell of burnt rubber starts making its way in the car. Obvious that one only brakes in a straight line prior to a turn, finally scrubbed off enough speed, and made the turn, yes...the curb was quite close.
How to get totally high on adrenaline in a few nano seconds...
Subsequently telling the resident Porsche guru mechanic that the engine was not going up the revs smoothly...does not seem to be ignition, something with not enough fuel.
Yes...new fuel filter(s) solved the problem....