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Everything posted by oakridge

  1. This has all been really interesting and useful. A straight electric vehicle would not be practical for us as we do quite a lot of long journeys, including to France. I think that asking Brittany Ferries if we could the car in on our way to St. Malo would not be well received. I think we will be reviewing the situation as Fagin said. When I was at school in the 50s they had a couple of what they called Tilley Vans which were battery powered with seats in the back for 6 or 8 kids but I have never been able to find anything about them.
  2. Thank you Rob. Do you take power directly from the panels or just make sure you charge the batteries when it is daylight?
  3. We have had solar panels on the roof for four years now and they are an enormous success. So.... I was wondering about charging the Prius batteries using this free power. Our present GenIII isn't plug-in but it looks as though the new ones are. I wondered what you thought.
  4. We gave our trusty Garmin away when we bought the first Prius in 2010. Thinking of that prompted the thought that if we did not like the car very much we would not have bought another, er, warts and all. After some research - good ol' Google - we find that it is possible to register the Touch&Go with TomTom. This brings the ability to plan a route on Google Maps and transfer that to the car and have a choice of voices which should help Christine. Whether we can get rid of the wordy instructions or not we will see. http://blog.toyota.co.uk/toyota-touch-go-how-to-use-sat-nav-features#.VE1
  5. Thank you Frostyballs. Now there is a sentence I never thought I would write. I might have known it was a TomTom our Son-in-Law complained a number of times to TomTom but they never even replied. Malcolm
  6. Thank you for your replies. Christine also wears two hearing aids which are gradually getting stronger and stronger. Just to add to the fun my eyesight is bad enough for me to be on the Blind Register - sometimes we make a good team. It is frustrating when things get mended worse. The only problem with the old system was the satnav upgrades which were an expensive farce. Christine uses the satnav a great deal, even for well known routes, in order to get the traffic information. Buying the same car we did not bother with a test drive otherwise I think we would have had a lesser model and
  7. There are a few changes with the new car which are causing a few problems for Chirsine, the driver, who is hard of hearing. 1. We did not bother with the rear sensors on this car because Christine could not hear the beeps, but the guidelines have disappeared from the camera which she found very useful. SatNav, although the new display is very good and it is good to have speed limits there are some problems. 2. The SatNav is not linked to the heads-up display. 3. The instructions ramble on. A person who is hard of hearing needs short precise instructions; volume is not the whole answer. 4.
  8. We were getting quotes of around £13,000 for the installation we have now. I am 71 so the chances of it breaking even in my lifetime seemed remote. Our house was built in 1913, long before A frames, but there is a hefty beam which goes across the roof and the panels are firmly fixed to this. It is also a slate roof so the rest of the structure is quite light. The inverter is a pretty hefty box in the cellar. All agreed that having it in the loft space was a bad idea because of the considerable temperature changes. Beware of inexperienced salesmen, they can make quite glaring errors. One
  9. We have had panels for 2.5years on the 'rent-a-roof' system and we are highly delighted. They have reduced our electricity bills by about one third, but we are quite heavy users. Our house is very exposed to the south west and there have been quite a few gales since they were installed, but they remain firmly in place.
  10. Late again I'm afraid - story of my life. Glad to be of help.
  11. I forgot to mention that the deal was an engagement ring or a car, she chose the car. The Prius is our 16th car. We have been married for 48 years.
  12. I cannot remember the figure for insurance but in 1963 we bought a car (a 1934 Hillman Minx), paid for insurance, eight lessons and the test for £50. http://www.flickr.com/photos/norwichhouse-oakridge/4476114618/in/set-72157622367220088
  13. I have just noticed this so a bit late. This site will convert a location to a number of different formats in degrees/minutes/seconds and it uses OS maps. http://www.streetmap.co.uk/
  14. It's being miserable that keeps me happy.

  15. In our home town there was a Jensen specialist who told Christine to drive the car hard and the Bosch injection would run better, so she did and it did. We had it some time and the only problem we had was that the high pressure fuel pump failed once. The Prius beats the Rovers on almost every count with one or two exceptions; it doesn't have the 'presence' of the Rover and it doesn't have automatic locking or electric seat adjustment.
  16. The Woodland Expert Theresa Green Fall From the Cliff Eileen Dover
  17. I have been sorting a large list of authors and have come across these: Surname Bide, forename Laura Surname Garfinkel, forename Simon. Malcolm
  18. Yes, Madasafish, they were all manual. The Prius is the first automatic we have had since our Triumph 2.5PI in the 70s which managed about 17mpg. Malcolm
  19. The Prius has now done 25,000 miles so I thought I would have a little look back. I have used the same spreadsheet since June 1999 when we changed from proper Land Rovers doing heavy work to a new Freelander diesel. The overall average for the Freelander was 33.4 mpg For the Rover 75 CDT 38 mpg For the Rover 75 CDTi 39.6 For the Prius 52.4 So the Prius does represent a great improvement - about 25% I think. Malcolm
  20. I know what life was like there, Crofter, I grew up there and still live nearby. After WWII it was very much better than the period between 1926 and 1935. In 1926. After the General Strike my father walked from Willington in County Durham to South Yorkshire looking for work and if that had failed he had promise of a job in Birmingham. People made the best of their lot, there were WMCs, Church, Chapel all with lots of activities. Mexborough Grammar school regularly sent pupils to Oxford or Cambridge. It irritates me enormousely when people, who are not badly off, continually moan about thei
  21. Coal-getting is a dangerous game Raistlin, my father was killed at Manvers Main in 1966. It is a pity that there is no safe way to get it because there are still vast quantities uderground in Britain, much of it unavailable to opencast. I have not been to Motherwell for 30 years when I worked for British Steel Corporation, but I remember it being as attractive as Teeside, Subikhorpe, Corby, Port Talbot and Sheffield. Malcolm
  22. This could sound like the old, much lampooned, Hovis advert, but I am (fairly) thick skinned.... There is much NIMBY fuss about having one of these terrible wind turbines visible from one's house. Now when I were a lad I was brought up in Mexborough in South Yorkshire. In the town was a coal-fired power station and a steam locomotive depot. Immediately surrounding us were nine pits and Manvers coke ovens. Just to the West of us was Park Gate Iron and Steel and Yorkshire Tar Distillers. Miners, like my Dad, got 10 tons of coal a year to burn. The air, the river and the canal were filthy. M
  23. We are in the fortunate position of travelling in the north-western side of France where there are no tolls. We have friends/clients north of Angers and other friends on the Charante, near Limoges. It sounds very much like a little beep from the horn so I don't think it is tyre noise. We have only recently been using the cruise control because Christine was convinced that it used more fuel, but a lorry-driver friend told her that was rubbish. Why do wives always believe what they are told by other people, but not their husbands? The roads are fantastic in France and much quieter, the fact
  24. We visit France quite often and have been there again during during the last fortnight. While on excellent Route Nationale and other dual carriageways we have noticed that if the cruise control is set there is a distinct beep when the car crosses the central white lines. This is only occasionally noticeable on British dual carriageways. Malcolm
  25. We have been delving into family history because we have a large collection of old photographs and documents to get us going - like you do. My maternal Great Grandfather, Thomas Beach, born 1816 originally of Quedgeley Manor Farm, Gloucestershire was sickly as a child and young man so he had a nurse. Unfortunately he and she got better aquainted than was required for the job and his father said to them both 'here's a shilling good buy'. Suddenly they were living a rather different lifestyle in Cheltenham. My Grandfather was born in 1871 and in the mid-1880s was sent to South Yorkshire to wo
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