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Forum: General Talk 10-16-2017, 09:48 AM  
Shortwave receiver
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 5
Views: 438
Thanks for the replies, by the way, everyone. I still haven't had time to play with this thing. Pity about Voice of America, though: I heard it got pretty useless almost a year ago. ut might be good to test reception there once I get to this. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-29-2017, 07:55 PM  
Shortwave receiver
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 5
Views: 438
So, I thought this might be of some interest here: my house has inherited a pretty nice 80's ish vintage shortwave receiver I need to find a spot for. And, for a wonder, the manuals are here, though I haven't had time to read them. It's alive, at least, but has complicated controls and I know there's a lot of solar flare activity right now messing up shortwave signals.

First hitch is that the top of the (substantial) built-in antenna was snapped off at some point and taped to the top of the machine. I'm not sure how important that is. Given the geography around here I might want to improvise some sort of external aerial anyway when I get the chance, but I'm wondering how important that tip and the dongle on the end is in practical terms.

One thing's for sure, it can pull in a lot more static than an old boombox on FM bands. I'll RTFM soon but I'm looking for a place to put it while we're swamped. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-29-2017, 07:41 PM  
What do you listen to, while driving ?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 33
Views: 1,178
I like mostly either CD compilations I made years ago or whatever I can find on the radio, depending what works in a given car. The Ratmobile's got a nice enough exhaust note but I don't go in for the silence thing. (Added a stainless steel tip and put in some sound damping to replace where a third seat was: I do think a stainless steel exhaust bit at least at the end just sounds nice.) Do need a stereo with an auxiliary input or something at least until I hack one into my old period-correct Jensen, though.
Forum: General Talk 09-29-2017, 03:21 PM  
Has this happened to you? My wife donated my favorite (antique) radio!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 35
Views: 4,409
I suggest trying to buy it *back* from Goodwill. This is the kind of thing that could end up on the web-auctions they have that I keep hearing about.
Forum: General Talk 09-29-2017, 03:10 PM  
Looking for new vehicle
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 17
Views: 808
I don't know your price level but for space you might look at some of the new Volvoes I don't like cause they steer-by-wire and are otherwise too digital. Or Ford SUVs/pickups which I must admit do all the whizbangs and gizmoes very well.
Forum: General Talk 05-14-2017, 02:47 PM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
(Pretty Jags. I'd still favor that putty-tan color or white, myself. )

Any of those new F-types turn up? (I think I could get along with one of those with the (somehow) great-sounding V6 and traditional stick. :))
Forum: General Talk 04-04-2017, 04:53 AM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
Red? I'm liking the taupe XKE coupe and the 356 coupe. Also I don't remember ever seeing a cocoa-brown 911 before. :)
Forum: General Talk 01-25-2017, 09:04 AM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
Yeah, none of them would be what you'd call *great* so 'edge' might be the right word, but it was actually interesting to see the old article. The Olds actually came with front *and* rear sway bars, and I think stiffer springs, though, and that can make a huge difference with cars that age. One of the first things I did for my old Duster as a kid, actually, that and Direct Connection shocks. :)
Forum: General Talk 01-08-2017, 02:22 PM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
Yeah, I think the Pontiac and Chevy were more popular, but from a vintage review, it seems the 442 would actually be the one I wanted, best handling, apparently.
Forum: General Talk 01-04-2017, 10:09 AM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
That Delahaye's just pretty. But I might feel like Cruella DeVille driving it. :)
Forum: General Talk 11-17-2016, 08:14 AM  
Gearheads, Unite!
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 1,859
Views: 144,396
Ooh, and white on black with my fave rims. Just how I love so many cars of the period. :)
Forum: General Talk 10-14-2016, 12:24 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Hee, probably unnecessary. I do put some kind of stuff on mine once in a while since age is likely to get to them before mileage, but that's with Southern sun and all.
Forum: General Talk 10-01-2016, 06:29 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
I think 'Skidmore' tires would be great for the drifting set. :)




I think maybe it's more like we've all got our good and bad experiences, depends how many tires we actually have run, really. Since a lot of people I know come to me for advice there or whatnot, I do have some secondhand experiences to draw on... they're usually not looking to spend a lot, mind you: based on a friend's experiences lately in the nicer-than-middling range I think I'd pick Michelins over Continentals, though I'm not so sure the latter tires are really to blame for the problems she kept having. (I suppose we'll find out. :) )

Housemate came back with some Tiger Paws recently, and those seem good. (I haven't run those myself since the set I had in high school, prior to the ol GT Qualifiers I probably wouldn't mind having again like they were. Kind of a favorite snapshot from high school memories is a friend in the passenger seat going, "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANICE tires!" :)
Forum: General Talk 09-30-2016, 11:08 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
I guess let us know how those work out. Tires are somewhere I don't want to skimp or take chances. Could be the same stuff sold at Wal-Mart under different brands, though, whatever that's worth. Frankly, I'd rather run good used tires if available than go any cheaper than my basic Kellys. (Which were fifty bucks apiece, but I was in a bind: they're usually what I recommend to people who don't drive even halfway hard ever, just need to go, but they're better than expected, honestly, especially since I tamed some of the rest of my suspension.) Anyway, sometimes a Chinese company makes honest products and are trying, sometimes they'll throw whatever garbage in there and stick a brand name that confuses non-English speakers about what they're getting. ('Goodride' for instance: how many letters of Japanese would you really memorize if the cameras came labeled that way, yaknow?)
Forum: General Talk 09-27-2016, 07:42 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
I think someone was just talking about them, (maybe searchable on this thread.) Can't really remember but I think they were in someone's top tier. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-20-2016, 11:17 AM  
Your latest acquisition
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 10,943
Views: 745,902
I think the 'n' is actually nicer in some way, though I can't recall how. (Maybe a stopdown lever or something.) Camera database here?

Oh, also I'll have a bit of show&tell accrued from some inactive times. SHould post soon. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-18-2016, 10:43 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
It's likely 'easy on tires' because you haven't altered the suspension geometry too much. (People adding lift kits and the like or *very* oversized tires can create problems unless you change out other bits. Mechanical simplicity and not-going-overboard have their virtues there. Basically your rear axle is fixed in most directions and your front stuff will take it as long as your rims more or less keep the center-line of the tires where they were designed to be (and your rims seem properly-fit that way. Maybe a wee bit wide-set, but just be sure your guys mind the ball joints and such up there and don't skimp on quality :) ) :) I'm sure that if I wanted a Jeep I would set up more or less like you have. (They're fun to work on but too specialized for me and I just wouldn't be taking the top off and going to beaches, which is the more fun about actually driving them. :) )

A lot of these fancy performancey-roadster cars' rear suspensions move in many more directions while also applying power, and also want soft-compound tires to get the grip. So they will wear more, especially if anything's worn so it's not quite in factory positions. Your TT obviously does this at all four corners. (If you still have your old rims around you could put something on those for seasonal purposes, but it's Texas. If I had your budget and that car, I'd just want more grip for those concrete highways there, probably in nearly any season. )
Forum: General Talk 09-15-2016, 10:08 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
If they have to be new, ...Kellys. (Unless you catch something nicer on sale.) They'll be all around decent does-alls and they'll work and last, if not inspire. (These are what I usually recommend to my non-car-people academic friends who mostly want something to hold their old car up. They're what I'm running at least for now and I consider them the 'sensible sneakers' of tires. (They're better than I expected, actually, on the Volvo. ) Or, prolly take your chances at Wal-mart, I guess. :)

I suggest spending a bit more if you can though: tires aren't a place I like to skimp, but if I have to, it's Kelly Explorers. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-15-2016, 11:36 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Hee, yeah. Those are great, too. The one I like best is the slightly-later (but same generation) GT liftback: they look like a little (well done) fusion of a classic Nissan Skyline and a Mustang fastback: I'd actually learned to drive in part on a later, blander-looking Celica coupe (mechanically about the same though, and ..same lovely gearbox) and when I'd blown an engine on that beloved Duster, a friend, well gave me one of those 77 GT Liftbacks. (They werent' worth then what they are now, but *loves.* Anyway while looking for a windshield I instead found a donor car for my Duster and never actually had that one on the road. How many times I've wished I could have kept that Celica in a box somewhere, though. :)




Hee. Well, some are ugly, anyway. I'd honestly rather they took some design chances and miss sometimes than be as truly bland as they had been for a while. (Actually I think the Koreans have got some pretty interesting design talent lately, though this hasn't translated into a car I'd really be after. (speaking of little shooting brakes, though, I thought those little Hyundai Velosters were interesting, but apparently you can't do a damn thing about the bar-type rear suspension. Kinda spunky-looking little things and they have both a (little) wagonback cargo area and a very photog-friendly-looking half-door to the back seat. :) ('Spunky' is usually a term I'll apply to little cars I like, you'll notice. ) Anyway, mixed opinions on the new styles but I'd rather they miss a lot and occasionally make something I like than play it too safe *all the time* I figure.

Anyway, I do like Jay Leno's attitude toward his car collection and car people, actually. If I had moneys I'd probably do something a little similar, (though on a smaller scale and probably with just the humbler things. There really isn't a half-million dollar car I'd even want that much, but a whole bunch to care for would be OK.

Hee. Actually here's one of my dream cars: beautifully-balanced, though with a tendency to break. (This can be attended to now.) Not my photo, just had to swipe off Net to look at. The Fairlady-bodied 280 was #2 on my bucket list of "most me" cars to have one day, this has the top spot: (Actually, when I was kind of barely off the street, one of those Boston dealerships Jay Leno used to work at had a used one of these they'd just taken in trade, and someone saw me pause to look. (probably saw the love: at the time who'd spot out one of *these* among the new pricey stuff they had,) and, yaknow, treated me like I was some kind of VIP customer despite a few protestations. I did not turn down the chance. :) Could have had that one for fifteen hundred, actually, though it may as well have been fifteen million at the time. :) (Speaking of nonmetallic colors, though: these make em look very good. Actually that Italian red is probably their best color, but being that flashy never appealed to me personally. )
Forum: General Talk 09-15-2016, 08:58 AM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Hee. I suppose you never know, though of course you've got your choice of what to drive: I have seen those with like ski and bike racks on them, presumably that's part of the market for these type cars: someone pops the skis on top and goes to their ski slopes, etc. Apart from just liking the shape and having a roof over and behind me, I tend to figure little zippy cars for me may as well have a hatchback or wagon-back on there: more likely I'd actually use em for more trips, and, well, back home at least, a lot of my favorite driving roads pass flea markets and yard sales and the like. :)

Of course, with the right budget, you can do a hec of a lot with older Volvo wagons: they're so *light* compared to more modern ones you don't need ridiculous horsepower to have a good time, even. (for little zippiness I'd consider getting hold of a like 77 Celica hatchback and just modernize some of it: you can get just about anything in custom brakes and suspension these days, still get 30+mpg if you don't get too crazy with the power. :) )
Forum: General Talk 09-14-2016, 08:47 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
How would you know. ;) Actually I'd been agitating with the Universe to start seeing some of the old nonmetallic colors come back, (I'm not talking about that wishywashy metallic silver-beige you still see, like a nice putty/buff color such as goes way back to the 50s, or 30s. :) All gloss, no sparkle. :) Actually I like the Ratmobile's color, though you could literally see the clearcoat damage from orbit for a while there, (still working on that, but yeah, I Google Earthed my house at one point and was like, Whoa. :) )

Actually fave color for those TT's is that glossy nonmetallic dove grey I've seen a few times. Though the thing is cars are particularly monotonous, colorswise. School colors are red and black and most of the rest you see is some shade of silver, some white, etc.


New digs don't make it very easy to work on paint, but I'm hoping to do something more soon, (This paint code is the envy of many Volvo fans around here, actually respraying a different color might have repercussions. :) Though I do like this, used to be my fave nail polish color once upon a time. ) ...and meanwhile, hey, one place I've got most of these fancy cars beat is.. I can put racks for like a van on and carry pipes and lumber. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-14-2016, 08:00 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Oof, sounds like I missed a story, there. I think those TTs would be interesting if they came in a shooting-brake wagon-back sort of form, or at least a swoopier hatchback. (If I suddenly jumped several income brackets I might check out one of those Volvo C30s they were making a while for zipping around purposes. At least till I finished building something older. :) ) Of course I saw a beige Toyota 86/ maybe still Scion,in front of a dealer a couple months ago, (One of those Scubayotions, as I call them, same car different badges) and yeah, I was like 'I'd be lookin.' Rear drive coupe, old-fashioned stick shift, modest enough power you don't have to go to a track to really drive em, .. interesting. :) Well, in beige, anyway. :)
Forum: General Talk 09-13-2016, 06:18 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Looks like it'll be OK. Might suggest placing it closer in to the grille when you do paint those parts, though: it should reduce any leverage on the grille material itself from wind buffeting or whatever it might encounter.

(Still an automotive pet peeve of mine that they still have those big fat front plates in states that require them when the actual numbers mean they could be half as tall. All these aerodynamic cars and then they make people stick a big flat billboard on em. :)

Tires and rims look pretty good from what I can see of em. (Let us know how they hold up. I've been wondering how 'Dunlops' will be under new ownership. When I eventually re-shoe the Ratmobile I'll be going a different way, basically on the sporty side of practical or practical side of sporty, (obviously don't need huge speed rating, and the pavement's pretty hot around here much of the time, ) but we'll see whenever that time comes. )
Forum: General Talk 09-13-2016, 12:34 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
It's still good to 'bed in' new pads/new/resurfaced rotors.
Forum: General Talk 09-10-2016, 01:41 PM  
Do You Know Tires?
Posted By Ratmagiclady
Replies: 92
Views: 3,988
Heh, OK. Guess I wasn't too far off with the New Jersey thing, wherever I got that. :) I haven't had any of their tires for years but always thought pretty well of them.
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