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  1. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    Sorry I am not sure what you mean by that. As an ex-driving instructor you should always do headchecks when changing lanes.
    This assumes you have visibility through the back windows. If your car is stuffed so full that all the back windows are blocked, you can't do a head check. Well, you could, but you wouldn't see anything. Granted it's a rare situation, but it's one I've been in several times doing moves.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    But with cars essentially being driven by computers these days, I have to think that cars are getting safer, but driving is not.
    Why do you have to think this? If only cars were getting safer but driving was not, I would think the evidence for that would be pretty clear--we would see a rise in accidents relative to the number of cars on the road but a decline in deaths and injuries. Is that the case? I don't actually know; I know the death rate for automobile accidents has declined, but I don't know about the accident rate. But either way, I would think that this would be a pretty easy hypothesis to prove or disprove with fairly objective evidence.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Southpaw View Post
    My friend has one of those in his garage and it's freaking ADORABLE!!!!
    I loved driving mine - sold it when my first child was due as I couldn't get behind the steering wheel anymore. I don't know how cold it gets where you are (or your friend), but there were many mornings when the metal frame supporting the vinyl hood iced up overnight and dripped on my head on the way to work as the interior warmed up and the ice melted
    'The one. The only. Daisuke Takahashi ' Chris Howarth, EurosportUK

  4. #24
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    The key thing is problematic. I have a remote entry key and my husband and son have the keyless start on their cars. Here's my issue. A friend has the keyless entry and start, the battery died. She couldn't get into her car or start it. Yes, they are convenient, but a regular old key for back-up is critical.

  5. #25

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    My keyless has the dashboard tell me when the battery is low and it has a key inside it just in case - also can be used for valet parking. It locks the storage compartments, give the fob to the attendant.

    Cars become easier to drive as they evolve. I think this attributes to the dare devilness that happens with drivers - they tend to forget they are driving a 3,000 lbs weapon. Before power steering, different braking systems etc, it took much more effort to drive so you had a tendency to pay attention a bit more.

  6. #26
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    ^^ Hmm, I guess some keyless fobs are better than others Is yours a newer car? I am pretty sure my husband's and son's don't have actual keys, but I never opened up the fob.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aceon6 View Post
    Just for ease of use, I prefer knobs, buttons, or rocker switches for the common things like the radio, flashers, etc. I'm shopping for a new car and feel I have to go upscale in order to get any buttons, and those will be on the steering wheel. HATE touchscreens in cars!
    I like my touch screen. It is positioned so that I can call my 12 "special" numbers without taking my eyes off the road. I can't do any navigations unless the car is stopped and I can't dial a number or access my entire phonebook unless the car is stopped. I am getting ready to trade in my 7 year old car. But the new ones have a toggle on the console, instead of a touch screen. You really have to look at the screen to position a cursor. I have driven the new car when i got a loaner, when mine was in getting something fixed. I hated it!

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    This assumes you have visibility through the back windows. If your car is stuffed so full that all the back windows are blocked, you can't do a head check. Well, you could, but you wouldn't see anything. Granted it's a rare situation, but it's one I've been in several times doing moves.
    Having moved all of my worldly possessions in several kinds of vehicles last year, I would agree. I still shoulder-checked out of habit, but couldn't see anything other than all of my crap piled up in the backseat.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by luna_skater View Post
    Having moved all of my worldly possessions in several kinds of vehicles last year, I would agree. I still shoulder-checked out of habit, but couldn't see anything other than all of my crap piled up in the backseat.
    Are you shoulder-checking through the rear window? Meaning you're turning towards the inside shoulder and not the one facing the side window?

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    The things I hate most about modern vehicles is the side mirror which is meant to cover the blind spot. Having driven a few hire vehicles with them really bugs me. Vehicles appear so much further away than what they really are which distorts perception. Also people get a false sense of security thinking they can drive without doing headchecks.
    Well, you CAN use just your sideviews and rear views, you just have to adjust them so you have no blind spot. I did that after reading it in some motoring magazine (Car and Driver, maybe?) and it makes life a lot easier. Right about the point the car leaves the mirror it's in my line of sight.

    Apparently I better go find a manual to learn on soon (that was the big thing-neither car we had at the time I learned to drive was a stick shift, so I learned on an automatic. Dad argues that there is in fact no reason for me to have one-he's an automotive engineer, he knows whereof he speaks, and he's right, especially about the computer being far better at timing the shift than I can be, but...all the fun cars are manuals!)

  10. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by danceronice View Post
    Well, you CAN use just your sideviews and rear views, you just have to adjust them so you have no blind spot. I did that after reading it in some motoring magazine (Car and Driver, maybe?) and it makes life a lot easier. Right about the point the car leaves the mirror it's in my line of sight.
    Sorry but I don't agree. I was a driving instructor so please don't tell me otherwise. You will also find a number of articles and publications that will contradict what you read too.

    I know the head check has saved me a number of times and also I watch out for drivers that don't do them because you know they don't see you and you can get on the horn to warn them of your position. If you have a vehicle without those modern side mirrors you are always going to have a blind spots. But I still don't trust the modern mirrors because of the preception of distance they create which is inaccurate.

    Funny when I was teaching kids and I started working on lane changing and head checks with them, it was always the mothers who told their kids they didn't need to do headchecks.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by ballettmaus View Post
    Are you shoulder-checking through the rear window? Meaning you're turning towards the inside shoulder and not the one facing the side window?
    If I'm changing lanes to the right, yes, I'm turning my head to the inside. We learned the acronym SMSM for "signal, mirrors, shoulder-check, move." No, I'm not cranking my head all the way to the rear window, my point is simply your view is limited if you have enough crap in your car.

  12. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    I know the head check has saved me a number of times and also I watch out for drivers that don't do them because you know they don't see you and you can get on the horn to warn them of your position. If you have a vehicle without those modern side mirrors you are always going to have a blind spots. But I still don't trust the modern mirrors because of the preception of distance they create which is inaccurate.
    At the same time, you need to learn how to handle situations in which you don't have any visibility through the back windows.

    When I was moving with the car stuffed full, that was the scariest part. I had always relied on head checks to change lanes, and now suddenly I couldn't do it. I had never learned to change lanes using only the mirrors.

  13. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    At the same time, you need to learn how to handle situations in which you don't have any visibility through the back windows.

    When I was moving with the car stuffed full, that was the scariest part. I had always relied on head checks to change lanes, and now suddenly I couldn't do it. I had never learned to change lanes using only the mirrors.
    Well the other solution is not to pile your car up with stuff so that you can't see.

    Driving is very much a practise thing. If you are thrown into a situation that you are not used of course you will have trouble dealing with it. It is being aware of that and taking into account all the risks in that situation. But then it might be worth doing some research or extra training to deal with those situations.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    Well the other solution is not to pile your car up with stuff so that you can't see.
    Let's be practical here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    Driving is very much a practise thing. If you are thrown into a situation that you are not used of course you will have trouble dealing with it. It is being aware of that and taking into account all the risks in that situation. But then it might be worth doing some research or extra training to deal with those situations.
    Absolutely. So much of driving is experience. And in order to gain experience on changing lanes when you can't do a head check, you have to, you know, change lanes without doing a head check.

    As a driving instructor, you need to emphasize that you should always do a head check when you can, but you also need to teach them how to use just the mirrors in case they're in such a situation. You're doing them a disservice by omitting the latter.
    Last edited by Gazpacho; 07-04-2013 at 03:59 AM.

  15. #35

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    Interesting thread. I love advances/technology, but the cheap part of me wishes I did not have to have some of these things as they add to the cost of the car.
    I always have bought new cars, small/sporty, with stick, partly because I like it, and mostly because on small sporty cars - getting automatic can cost an additional $800-1,200 (in the US). But I would never again own a car without A/C. But I don't get the big deal about heated seats, in the winter I have a coat on, and the cold seat does not bother me (and I have lived in Minnesota, so I know cold). But I how hot seats get in the summer - I might pay for some quick seat cooler. Also some of the advances - if they break, cost more to repair.

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    ^^ Hmm, I guess some keyless fobs are better than others Is yours a newer car? I am pretty sure my husband's and son's don't have actual keys, but I never opened up the fob.
    I have a 2013 now, the 2011 and 2008 I had also had the key inside the fobs. Maybe it's the kind of car I drive? On mine there's a button near the top that when you slide it/ push it, out pops the key and the fob is detached.
    I'm honest, just not always in a nice way

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Willy View Post
    Well the other solution is not to pile your car up with stuff so that you can't see.
    Seriously? I moved everything I own 600 km last year, and it took several trips as it was. It would have taken me all year if I'd made sure to keep my windows clear.

    I'm a big proponent of shoulder-checking. It's saved my butt on more than one occasion. But I agree with others that it's important to know how to use your mirrors for those occasions when shoulder-checking just isn't possible.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanuckSk8r View Post
    I have a 2013 now, the 2011 and 2008 I had also had the key inside the fobs. Maybe it's the kind of car I drive? On mine there's a button near the top that when you slide it/ push it, out pops the key and the fob is detached.
    My husband's last car had that. But, the fob was only for keyless entry. It didn't start the car. I can't imagine where the key would be on the new one. My car has keyless entry but it is an actual key with a larger head on it. The head is the "fob". The fob has buttons and does not just unlock the door if you approach the car. My car is a 2008, but I actually got it in June of '07. The new models have the fob that unlocks without buttons and has the push button start. I don't like the buttonless unlock. The OCD in me likes to lock the door and then pull the handle to make sure the door is locked. I can't do that if standing next to the car unlocks the door !
    Last edited by cruisin; 07-05-2013 at 01:32 PM.

  19. #39
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    Push button start is weird to me. I've driven my parents' cars a bit, which both have push button starts, and it's difficult to remember to check that the keys are in your pocket/purse without the ritual of turning the car off with the keys in your hand.

    When I was 14 or 15 and learning to drive was just around the corner, I used to ask my parents to let me turn the key to start the car. It was exciting!

  20. #40
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    My work van is a box type truck with no rear window, so using the side mirrors is the only way to back up, or change lanes. There is a way to adjust the mirrors for a maximum view and with added convex mirrors I can pretty much see everything coming up alongside me. It's gotten so I consistently use mirrors even when backing my car. And as I have added convex mirrors to my car, my head check is something like a sidelong glance because the blind spot is tiny. It's what you get used to.
    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”– MLK

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