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Old 20-06-2019   #10141
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by SB1500 View Post
The fact that in the new Panda I won't be able to brake check brown-nosers anymore!!!
A big F-off tow bar helps to concentrate their minds.
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Old 21-06-2019   #10142
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by DaveMcT View Post
Sorry for the lack of punctuation. I'm sure you coped.

Many drivers these days accelerate painfully slowly (probably hammering the clutch in the process) then stop at least a car length short when queuing. The same ones crawl up to 40 in posted 60 zones and otherwise never do more than 10mph BELOW the posted speed limit. They cause long snakes of cars on A roads and they make peak period queues much more hassle than they need to be.

These people are simply selfish gits and are absolutely not safer drivers, though they will claim to be of course.
Yesterday, a usually very enjoyable drive along a pretty minor A-road was spoilt by one such person. This road has very few overtake opportunities, but the morning peak usually flows well. (A417 Faringdon - Lechlade - Fairford - Cirencester)
Just before Lechlade, I caught up with a scruffy Nissan Almera, moving at a steady 37mph, in a good 60mph stretch. The next corner, usually taken by me at around 45-50, was slowed to 27mph. Entering Lechlade, the 40 limit was nearly reached, but then at teh 30, ne continued at around 32 and gently disappeared.
Very soon after leaving Lechlade, caught up with him, just after the only good overtake section, so speeding through the town stole my overtake.
This continued all the way to Cirencester, where we went our separate ways. At that time the queue was longer than I have ever seen on this road, at any time. (32 years!) A long queue of angry drivers, all ready to make poor decisions later as a result.
But driving slowly is safe, isn't it?
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Old 21-06-2019   #10143
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by SB1500 View Post
The fact that in the new Panda I won't be able to brake check brown-nosers anymore!!!
Probably a good thing.
Whilst brake checking is often a strong thought, and very tempting, it carries risks. Being hit from behind, aggravating an already angry person can bring violence, or a poor overtake decision resulting in a crash. And can bring careless or dangerous driving charges.
Most of them are thinking about other things, and have no conscious thoughts that they are too close, a big risk, or threatening. A few do, but most are just in their own world.
Quote Originally Posted by DaveMcT View Post
A big F-off tow bar helps to concentrate their minds.
As does a scruffy car with dents, or a very obvious camera.
(I'm surprised there is not a big market in dummy cameras, like home CCTV stuff, or have I missed this?)
Gently running through the edge of dirty puddles when available throws dirty water over them. That often results in them dropping back.
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Old 21-06-2019   #10144
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Speed limits and compliance have become interesting in Edinburgh these days due to the proliferation of 20mph zones - There seems to be considerably more 20 zones than 30's these days? I surprise myself by actually being in agreement with the majority of them as they are mostly in residential settings where children and pedestrians are of concern - it definitely allows more thinking time so smoother and safer progress can be made. There do seem to be some however which are difficult to understand the thinking behind - for instance the road through the Royal Park (Holyrood Palace to Royal Commonwealth Pool) which I travel on often. It's been 30 for all my life but now 20. It's a very rural setting with wide verges and excellent visibility, even has a separate cycle path. Why 30? Then there's the main route Cannonmills to Golden Acre. A well used main route now 20mph. Everyone gets very frustrated. Then at the end it joins Ferry Road which is the same type of "main route road" which is a 30. However many people don't pick up on it being a 30 and continue merrily on at 20! I think that, whatever the speed limit, keeping up with the general flow of traffic (but I'm not advocating breaking legal limits or driving too fast in inappropriate conditions) just makes sense. Often, these days, traffic is so dense that overtaking is dangerous and of little benefit so if everyone just travels at good speed the journey can be safely and quickly completed.

There is a particularly amusing speed camera on the A1 which we drive past coming back into the town from visiting our younger boy (couple of times a week on average). It's a 40 limit single carriageway but with a central, grassed, divider - so it looks like a dual carriageway. Some people slow down to 30, or there abouts, as they go past it, which often results in you suffering the impatient person behind riding your back bumper. I always go through at the full 40 mph and have never been flashed.

There do seem to be a disturbing number of people these days who are not allowing sufficient space. My older boy used to be one. I decided to risk taking him to task over it and we went for a little drive where I got him to practice the "Only a fool breaks the two second rule" thing. He was very surprised how big a gap he should be leaving so just to reinforce it we drove out into the country where we found a quiet straight section of country road. I got him to do an emergency stop from 30 mph. (ABS is impressive isn't it?) He was quite shocked when he saw how far it took to stop. The drive back into town was the most relaxed I'd felt, with him at the wheel, in a long time. Until, unsurprisingly, the aggressive city traffic started cutting him up!

Some one above mentions leaving a gap that's too big between you and the car in front when stationary (I think that's what they meant?) in heavy traffic. I was taught to stop when the back of the car in front prevents you being able to see the road surface. (another variation is to stop as your bonnet prevents you seeing the tyre/road interface on the car in front. If you broadly do that you will find that should the car in front break down or become immobile for any reason you will be able to apply full lock and drive out from behind it in one go - It also allows space for those who can't do hill starts very well! (ah, that's why they introduced hill hold - incompetent drivers!).

Think I'll stop at that before you've all nodded off!
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Old 21-06-2019   #10145
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Just lately I've notice the numbers of drivers leaving excessive gaps in traffic queues or (for that matter) stopping a car length short at T junctions has increased considerably. I don't know if its older drivers getting shorter (cant see over the steering wheel) or the blocky height of today's car bonnets.

On the motorbike, they were handy as I could cruise gently alongside the queue knowing that when traffic appears from the opposite direction there will always by a pointless space waiting for me.

Now that I don't use the bike, these gaps are just plain annoying as they reduce the numbers of vehicles that can get through on a green light. Fewer cars moving = longer queues.

This morning, I pulled up first at a traffic light. The car next to me stopped with it's front end aligned with my back door - at least three metres from the stop line. What is that about? The driver had my car to show the stop line relative to them but still they would not move forwards.

In Derby we had a phase of aggressive speed bumps installed mostly on the the old council estate roads. These areas were not known for dangerous driving but some council bright spark wanted to show who's the boss in town. The policy caused mayhem with traffic flows because the speed bumps were just so sharp and high. An unexpected side effect was the numbers of pedestrians walking into the roads because the traffic was now so slow. It created another hazard because drivers had to not only watch the car in front like a hawk to avoid a rear-end or hitting a speed bump too quickly, there were now J-walking pedestrians who clearly did not give a F. Businesses in the afflicted areas noticed a considerable drop in trade. I certainly avoided those roads like the plague.

The bumps were eventually removed because ambulances could not get along the roads at a useful speed and the bumps were harming already dangerously ill patients. Life returned to normal with road injuries still no problem.


Too much speed is bad but too slow is even worse.
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Last edited by DaveMcT; 21-06-2019 at 14:35.
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Old 21-06-2019   #10146
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by DaveMcT View Post

This morning, I pulled up first at a traffic light. The car next to me stopped with it's front end aligned with my back door - at least three metres from the stop line. What is that about? The driver had my car to show the stop line relative to them but still they would not move forwards.

In Derby we had a phase of aggressive speed bumps installed mostly on the the old council estate roads. These areas were not known for dangerous driving but some council bright spark wanted to show who's the boss in town. The policy caused mayhem with traffic flows because the speed bumps were just so sharp and high. An unexpected side effect was the numbers of pedestrians walking into the roads because the traffic was now so slow. It created another hazard because drivers had to not only watch the car in front like a hawk to avoid a rear-end or hitting a speed bump too quickly, there were now J-walking pedestrians who clearly did not give a F. Businesses in the afflicted areas noticed a considerable drop in trade. I certainly avoided those roads like the plague.

The bumps were eventually removed because ambulances could not get along the roads at a useful speed and the bumps were harming already dangerously ill patients. Life returned to normal with road injuries still no problem.
Up here in Edinburgh, some time ago, they introduced "bicycle priority" boxes at most traffic lights in the city. This consists of a coloured box painted on the road where the first car in the queue at the lights would normally stop. You are not supposed to be stopped in this box. It works not too bad most of the time but can be very annoying in dense traffic where bikes can pile up ahead of you so slowing your initial progress, then you get ahead of them after the faster ones have pedaled away and the slower ones have strung out into single file. Only for them all to catch up, undertake you and, briefly, form an impenetrable block in front of you at the next lights! Of late I've noticed more drivers starting to ignore the boxes and pulling up at the lights so the bikes can't get in front of them - Taxis are especially good at it. Wonder if the "boys in blue" or their traffic warden accomplices, will start to crack down on it?

As far as speed bumps go our town is littered with them and some are really vicious. The motor factors have literally shelves full of replacement springs! I personally hate them. Must say though we don't seem to have the J walking problem though as far as I know? The relatively new trams seem to be a bit of a problem though. They are so quiet there have been a number of accidents in the main touristy areas - Princes Street etc. Also people get their bike tyres stuck in the tracks too and this has caused a number of serious incidents - I think there was at least one death? One thing I do wonder about speed bumps though is how they affect emissions/pollution? Most people slow down to around 10/15/20 mph to negotiate one, depending on it's severity, then accelerate away briskly before slowing for the next one. Surely this can't be conducive to either good fuel usage or exhaust emissions?

Oh and by the way, the speed limit through the royal park (see above) is 20 not 30 as I stated above - sorry for the error.
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Old 21-06-2019   #10147
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

I'm all for the bike boxes at junctions in city centres - hopefully it will encourage more people to ditch cars and use more suitable forms of transport. Unless it's absolutely bucketing down, an eBike is much more suitable for most journeys within major cities.

When I have to visit our London office near Waterloo, I park and stay in hotels on the outskirts (usually Wembley or Docklands) and cycle in.
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Old 22-06-2019   #10148
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by Pugglt Auld Jock View Post
I got him to do an emergency stop from 30 mph. (ABS is impressive isn't it?) He was quite shocked when he saw how far it took to stop.
With drivers that consistently drive too fast I have often used such an exercise.
Near me we have a lovely country road, lots of long straights, plenty of visibility.
Explain the exercise.
Get them up to 60/70 or even 80 if that is how they drive. At a noticeable marker, say STOP.
Once the car is stopped, out we get, and ask them to walk back to where they think I said STOP. They will rarely walk far enough, usually only about 2/3 the distance.
Then take them to where I actually said STOP.
From there, look at the car. It is further than you expected, sometimes frighteningly so. At that speed, anything happening in that space is already hit, even if you take a few moments to get there. Shows how far ahead the driver needs to focus.
Calms most people down very effectively, and is more useful than memorising the Highway Code distances.
Quote Originally Posted by DaveMcT View Post
Just lately I've notice the numbers of drivers leaving excessive gaps in traffic queues or (for that matter) stopping a car length short at T junctions has increased considerably.
You will often find me sitting back further than expected.
In normal queues it will be because of the behaviour of the occupants in the car ahead, and I believe there is a risk of them rolling back, or not moving away when expected. I don't just look at cars, I look into them, helps the planning and anticipation.
At junctions, on approach, my assessment may tell me that I will see more if I stop earlier, due to sight lines, obstructions, etc. At roundabouts, I have often stopped in the left lane a whole truck length back, so that I can see into the roundabout across behind the truck to my right, rather than sitting beside it seeing nothing. This creates a blind spot just in front of the truck, but traffic flowing through it will show when it is clear. Think about this lots before using it.
Quote Originally Posted by Pugglt Auld Jock View Post
I've noticed more drivers starting to ignore the boxes and pulling up at the lights so the bikes can't get in front of them - Taxis are especially good at it. Wonder if the "boys in blue" or their traffic warden accomplices, will start to crack down on it?
You are allowed to stop in that box if you have passed the first line when the lights change. (Highway Code Rule 178) Happens if the traffic is moving slowly, and the lights change as you cross the first line. Crossing the second line would be passing the red light. Unless the police officer witnesses the stop, he cannot argue it did not meet the criteria, so no action.
Quote Originally Posted by Pugglt Auld Jock View Post
{Speed Bumps}Most people slow down to around 10/15/20 mph to negotiate one, depending on it's severity, then accelerate away briskly before slowing for the next one. Surely this can't be conducive to either good fuel usage or exhaust emissions?
The theory of speed bumps is that you choose a speed that negotiates the bumps comfortably, then maintain it throughout. That would bring the required safety, and reduced emissions. Human nature will always speed up and slow down, a you say creating more emissions that a steady speed.

I think a few 25mph limits might work better. Slow enough to reduce risk, fast enough to feel progress is adequate. 20mph is psychologically difficult, so is exceeded, 23-25, much easier to cope with.

Anyone still reading? Sorry.
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Old 22-06-2019   #10149
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Thanks for all that PB, nothing to apologize for!

I've tried the "comfortable speed over bumps" approach and it involves going fast enough for the car to not pitch too much. The down side is that very considerable suspension deflections are involved and I fear for the life of the springs, to say nothing about shocks, strut top mounts, arm bushes, etc, etc. Consequently I've adopted a strategy of going very slowly so that spring and shocker deflection is kept to a minimum.

Memorizing stopping differences has little meaning for many people I fear - self included. I had an experience back in the late '60's which has lived with me all these years and greatly affected me. We (future wife and I) were doing one of our earlier London - where we lived in those days - to Edinburgh trips in my old Ford Anglia. We were off the end of the M6 on the old, pre M74, A74 dual carriageway, cruising along at around 65 mph - which the Anglia would do all day comfortably. That old road undulated uphill and down quite a lot and had much more in the way of bends than the super smooth new M74. We were at the bottom of one of the dips when I noticed something in my mirror coming up very fast behind us. In fact it was two cars. In the lead was a Mk1 Lotus Cortina which made a lovely noise from its Webers and exhaust as it went past pretty much flat out - 100+ mph? I don't remember what the "chase" car was (being as how I was obsessed with wanting a Lotus Cortina to replace the Anglia at that time - never did own one, got a Mk1 GT instead) Anyway, with us half way up the hill the Lotus breasted the rise ahead and immediately it's brake lights came on as did the "chase" car and they disappeared from view over the hill top. I immediately stood on my brakes (drums all round) and had got down to around 25mph as we topped the hill. The Lotus was rammed into the back of the stationary queue of traffic in the fast lane and the "chase" car was up the embankment about a coupe of hundred yards ahead having managed to somehow avoid everyone by taking to the countryside. Both vehicles, and the several cars the Lotus had taken with it, must have been right offs but amazingly no-one was killed (seat belts were by then mandatory). What really came home to me was how long the old Anglia, with its very well maintained drum brakes and 5.20 by 13 cross ply tyres, took to pull up. We did get stopped before the incident but it really raised my heart rate! On our regular trips down to the west country and Salisbury I observe with incredulity the driving of some on our motorways. The separation of some vehicles on the M6 in the midlands would be pushing it a bit even in a 30mph speed limited area!
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Old 22-06-2019   #10150
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Exited the motorway (M1, J39) this morning behind a van, a BMW and a Renault. As we round the roundabout into the village (Calder Grove) with it's 30mph limit they all fail to slow down (probably doing at least 40) and disappear. The 30 turns to a 40, I see them in the distance rounding the corner into the 60 zone, I come around the corner and start accelerating, and quickly overtake all 3 of them as they're still doing 40 ...
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Old 22-06-2019   #10151
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by Eklipze3k View Post
Exited the motorway (M1, J39) this morning behind a van, a BMW and a Renault. As we round the roundabout into the village (Calder Grove) with it's 30mph limit they all fail to slow down (probably doing at least 40) and disappear. The 30 turns to a 40, I see them in the distance rounding the corner into the 60 zone, I come around the corner and start accelerating, and quickly overtake all 3 of them as they're still doing 40 ...
At least you had an overtake opportunity.

Reminds me of a section of dual-carriageway in Swindon. Used to be national speed limit, changed to 40 early hours of a Sunday. New 40 signs at start, but no repeaters.
I shot off the roundabout, around 8:45am, accelerated towards 70, then a thought hit my brain, a query about a sign with a number in it. (We pay less attention to familiar roads) I scanned for the old national limit repeaters, and saw several lampposts with dirty lines where these had been removed.
So I slowed to 40, as a good guess, to be overtaken by several cars, some of which parped their horn. (I was in the school car)
As we arrived at the next roundabout, there was a team of police, stopping and ticketing all speeders. A bit mean I thought, as really they should have just been warning the drivers. A smug, and lucky, feeling as I was waved out past the line to continue on my way.

The 40 didn't last long, then upped to 50, which it still is.
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Old 23-06-2019   #10152
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Child seat shopping...

Did research online last night...decided what I wanted. Got to the shop..realised it didn't do what I wanted as it was only isofix forward facing. Shop found a similar one, still only isofix one way though but 90 quid less so I'm mentally debating if the annoyance is worth it. Turned out it didn't matter as it was on back order, ok wandered to another shop who had it on at same price. Out of stock unless I drove to Leeds. At this point I'm debating getting the 90 quid more expensive one..it still won't do exactly what I wanted it for but sick of my life and want to go home.

Finally off I go to a third shop in the same retail park to see if they have the seat. They actually do..but, they've got another in stock that has front and rear isofix and is 0 to 12 years old too so it's a one and done job..also only a tenner more than the cheaper of the two I was looking at.

At this point I'm thinking sweet get 'er done..but no I need a test fit before they'll sell me it..its gone 4 the shop closes at 430..my car is half a mile away outside of the 1st shop. So anyway run over, get it, get back by 4:15. Get the store one test fit it, it goes in (just!) so great, bought.

So I'm standing outside the shop with a box, and then reality Dawns. This thing is mahoosive..it weighs at least 15-20kg and my wife and son are with me so the boot is pretty much full. It won't fit on the backseat in its box..it literally won't fit in the door. Finally rolled the front passenger seat back, just fitted in on the seat but had a nightmare getting in it past the A pillar due to the slant on the windscreen.

How do people use a Supermini as their only car for this stuff??? Coming soon! me getting so annoyed at automotive tetris I buy a Peugeot 308 estate.
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Old 25-06-2019   #10153
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

Quote Originally Posted by Eklipze3k View Post
Exited the motorway (M1, J39) this morning behind a van, a BMW and a Renault. As we round the roundabout into the village (Calder Grove) with it's 30mph limit they all fail to slow down (probably doing at least 40) and disappear. The 30 turns to a 40, I see them in the distance rounding the corner into the 60 zone, I come around the corner and start accelerating, and quickly overtake all 3 of them as they're still doing 40 ...
I did something similar in the Panda 1.2 Dynamic. The bloke in the Golf GTI rammed up the arse end of the Mr Ialwaysdo40 was really upset that I had the temerity to get past him. But he was so close to the car in front he had no chance to overtake. They both need to learn how to drive.
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Old 25-06-2019   #10154
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

The speed bumps (concrete pyramids) in Derby were so steep and sharp you really could not go more than 5mph. I'm all for managing town traffic but these were 30mph roads. The humps were unsuitable even at the new 20mph zones as traffic was literally forced down to walking speed.
People who lived on the afflicted roads hated them (1) because their cars were getting a hammering and (2) because they could not get out of their driveways due to the solid wall of cars across the entrance.

My mother's house was built on a main road into town with a 30 limit. The route into town went through an infamous council estate area. Sorry if that's political but the area was/is so bad that animal charities refused to rehome in the area. Obviously the council had to be seen to do something so they used the 1/2 mile rule to infest the entire 5 miles of road with speed cameras. Any injury accidents on any street within the radius were used to get scameras installed on that one main road.

The result was a solid line of traffic going at 25mph. But at peak times it moved at walking speed. Side roads had terrible queues as people could only exit if drivers stopped for them. This of course aggravated the main traffic flow adding to the jams.

A classic case of unintended consequences but those scameras are still in place 20 years later. All based on (admittedly nasty) accidents that never actually happened on that road.

Burton on Trent at the same time had a rat-run street with speed problems for the residents. They installed curved speed bumps that really did limit speed to 25. Any faster and the car took off and crashed down but at exactly 25, cars just floated over the humps. It was the perfect solution and nobody complained.
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Last edited by DaveMcT; 25-06-2019 at 11:25.
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Old 26-06-2019   #10155
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Re: What's made you grumpy today? (Part II)

The Fiat Forum app - completely disappeared from the iPhone App Store. No signs of it returning it comments from admins?? Canít upload photos via the normal site or mobile site either for some reason. And yet Iíve just got a new Panda with lots of discussion and photos to add!
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