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Four wheels on my wagon — 9 Comments

  1. that are perfectly good, but fail to meet some fucking EU standard

    The EU standards regarding tread (if that was the problem) are ,if I recall aright, set so low as to be almost negligent-very much ‘lowest common denominator’.Mind you , it’s been a whiles since I was involved in the trade so maybe things have changed. When i was training to be a mechanic they showed us just how little of a tyre is actually in contact with the road at any time. It’s scary, you’re trusting your life to a bit of rubber the size of a 2 Euro coin…or less in some cases. So whilst I hate having to fork out a fortune for new tyres (even at ‘mates rates’), it is money well spent. Same with brake pads & discs. A brand new set of which literally,no exaggeration, saved not only my life but that of my kids. The only way we could have avoided the crash was to have driven straight into a sheer rock face at *cough* 100kmh but those brand-new-a-couple-of-hours-ago brakes gave the twats racing towards us the nano seconds required to accelerate their high performance cars up to cooking speed, overtake the tractor and get back on their side of the narrow mountain road.

    I know garages like to ‘try it on’ but I hope for your sake you did actually rummage in the kitchen drawer after and find that tyre gauge -you know, the one the Grandkids like to pretend is Dr.Who’s ‘sonic screwdriver’- and just check.

    Just on a note of historical interest, we were taught that if the ‘Lady’ was showing her knees then the tyres were worn: //coinquest.com/cgi-data/cq_ro/response_380/germany_50_pfennig_1998.jpg

    • Up until a few years ago I had the original tyres on the car. They were in grand nick but I was told to get them changed as they didn’t have an “E” on them as mandated by the EU, or some such rubbish. I changed them. Now I have to change them again and I’m not even sure why. They weren’t worn or cracked, but I must obey my masters?

      • ” They weren’t worn or cracked, but I must obey my masters?”

        Probably past their ‘Sell by date’ then and yes it is actually important.

        • I suppose it may be if driving constantly on motorways which I don’t. [Not much, anyway].

          I ignore sell-by dates. I’ll eat anything.

  2. The “inspection” as it’s called around these parts is an annual thing as well and just recently went from a rather simple procedure (check the tires, brakes, lights and make sure there’s more metal than rust) to a horrendously complicated cluster f**k involving a modified iPad, wiring harnesses, mandatory photographs of vehicles and a set of new inspection items and regulations that a vehicle must pass that take up a whole manual recently issued by the state of Vermont.

    Oh, and the inspection now costs $40 more than it used to as well.

    And since it’s the good old US, each state makes it’s own rules when it comes to vehicle inspections. So the rather clueless Vermont (one of the road salt capitals of the Northeast) government decided the best way to get these old jalopies off the road is to make it impossible for these rigs to pass the annual inspection. Needless to say the first year this unbelievably complicated new inspection was put into place, a lot of brand new cars were failing never the mind old rusty heaps so I have to believe that the idiots in the Vermont senate were rather shocked when their own cars wouldn’t pass.

    I hear this new newfangled inspection is undergoing certain modifications this year?

    • When the test was introduced here the main concern was that all the lights worked and there were no parts of the bodywork hanging loose and liable to drop off. That was fair enough. Now there is a massive list of checks where they hook the car up to a massive test bench that measures brake efficiency, wheel alignment, headlight alignment, exhaust emissions [that one is a bugger], condition of seat belts, windscreen wipers and just about anything else you can think of. Next they’ll be failing me for having pipe ash in the ashtray.

      • Strangely enough, Vermont has never required an emissions test. May the gods help us if they ever do.

        And now they’re clamoring about electric vehicles in a state where flat level roads are a rarity and half of all of them are dirt. Plus the 6 months of solid winter, below zero temps, lots of snow and ice, plus mud season, plus the need for 4 wheel drive vehicles, plow trucks, farm equipment, etc, make Vermont the least likely state to ever switch over to electric anything that has to do with 4 or more wheels.

        Must be a political thing.

  3. ” Next they’ll be failing me for having pipe ash in the ashtray.”

    Unlikely, yet, but very soon you may find the garage refuses to do the MOT unless you have the interior of your car professionally valeted first to remove all the 3rd hand smoke. Why should mechanics risk DEATH by cancer from having to sit in your toxic box on wheels?

    • Not as unlikely as you may think? They may take it as proof that I had been smoking in the car and that I might have had kids there. Can’t be too careful?

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