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Old 26th July 2010, 22:53   #46
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Mahindra Great Escape - Sawarsi - 25 July 2010-100_1665.jpg

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Old 26th July 2010, 23:02   #47
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Mahindra Great Escape - Sawarsi - 25 July 2010-100_1678.jpg

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This was where the Thar didnt wanna take a chance. BD sir had to post this )

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Old 26th July 2010, 23:03   #48
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Default My 1st OTR As Driver. Boy What an Experience!!!

My first 4x4 excursion behind the wheel!!! Both sweet and a bit bitter. Steiger decided to leave his mint and original classic at home and ride with me as instructer and spotter. Ours was the only team at the MGE with full family. There were all girls teams (black and white cats!!!), PILOTS team, press team. Ours was the family team. Steiger's boy Shane was attending his 7th OTR, and he is only 6

Here we are at the crush of the start. In the middle of a 101 vehicles, we got out somewhere in the middle with all the 2wd scorpios...

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Old 26th July 2010, 23:07   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 53BHP View Post
Here we are at the crush of the start. In the middle of a 101 vehicles, we got out somewhere in the middle with all the 2wd scorpios...

Attachment 394498
You should have just cut across in the front. Our cars were numbered 82 and above but we were ~ at #20 position by the time we reached sawarsi. Infact, it's good that we cut across. Our team did a lot of spotting and recovery.

I'll write a detailed report later.

@Maddy: keep the pics flowing buddy.
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Old 26th July 2010, 23:12   #50
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Mahindra Great Escape - Sawarsi - 25 July 2010-100_1690.jpg

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Mahindra Great Escape - Sawarsi - 25 July 2010-100_1697.jpg

Am done. Sorry could not add narration as i had to minimize each picture
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Old 26th July 2010, 23:18   #51
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Since I was behind the wheel most of the way, dont have too many pics to up. Here they are anyway. We got up to the rocky patch but then got stuck in convoy. by the time we were ready to move, most of the guys were turning around to drive back. Most of the route ahead had been wiped out by the torrential rains of the previous two nights

Half way down the way back, my drivetrain gave up the ghost and stopped giving drive to either of the diffs. the last 15k was at the back of the service 540 with DI engine. (thats the bitter part)

Was a great experience nevertheless and we hope to do this trail again!!! soon. Thanks to the service crew the Jeep is parked safe at my Panvel house. Next weekend will be spent fixing the problem

This Jeep is doing goa on the 6th of August. Hope to see many of you there!!

Here are some pics:

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Our ride home!!. Our latest project. Cute small Willys with some unclear history, a smooth revving Bolero engine and swift as they get with brand new MRF NDMS footwear:

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Old 26th July 2010, 23:28   #52
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My comments on the event.

1) I loved it as it was my first but the number of entries were 101 with 90% being 2 wheel drives. This was a mess.

2) The trail was good for a 4 wheel drive vehicle. Some parts were tricky.

All the jeeps in our convoy was awesome. Gogis jeep is awesome as the engine humms beautifully.

Few two wheel drives did stuff where the rest got stuck. The driver DOES matter.

The thar is beautiful but please Vinod get the prices in my range atleast.

Was a pleasure meeting Dr Mohan, BD sir.

Ibrahim and his partner in crime the gypsy were made for each other

Thanks everyone. I had fun.

PS: Could someone post one of my pics? I have none with my face!!
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Old 27th July 2010, 08:46   #53
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Dear all - now that the Thar has been displayed in the MGE on Sunday, please enjoy these photographs.

My comment on the "impossible to do" obstacle, right at the top of the Sawarsi Hill - there was one obstacle where the shush was just too deep and too mucky. It was like quicksand and it was upto full tyre level. Anything short of an army tank would get bogged down there and there was no point wasting everybody's time, therefore I did not even attempt it. As usual, I first saw this obstacle, tackled it in my mind and came to the conclusion that the chance of clearing this obstacle was an absolute zero. That did not prevent me from having fun at that spot. With Gogi as passenger, we took the Thar and I climbed a very steep hill, drove cross axled over tree roots on full articulation and we emerged like ghosts on the other side where Vinod was waiting.

Advantage of using 4WD low instead of 4WD high on continuous climb - I found one more advantage of having power under my right foot. The climb was continuous and it was broken tarmac (in rally jargon we call such terrain as "car breaker"). It was very steep with rocks jutting out. I was calmly driving up in 4WD low first gear, just applying enough throttle to maintain headway without slipping the clutch at all. As the terrain improved or the climb lessened, I would go from first to third, then even to fourth and then come back as required. This technique will help to preserve the clutch under such an application, hence I am mentioning here.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar
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Old 27th July 2010, 09:16   #54
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Default Thar Q

OT:
Behram Sir,

While I don't want this thread to become another Thar thread, still want to know that are you guys planning to offer your offroader with H/T tyres or atleast we can expect A/T? Is this an economics-driven decision or you have the option to decide?

Not sure but I guess all 4x4s in India are sold with H/Ts as OEM and I do wonder why. Will the Thar change things? Frankly, I don't even know the norm internationally. Is this the case?

Cheers,
Aditya
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Old 27th July 2010, 11:08   #55
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Advantage of using 4WD low instead of 4WD high on continuous climb - I found one more advantage of having power under my right foot. The climb was continuous and it was broken tarmac (in rally jargon we call such terrain as "car breaker"). It was very steep with rocks jutting out. I was calmly driving up in 4WD low first gear, just applying enough throttle to maintain headway without slipping the clutch at all. As the terrain improved or the climb lessened, I would go from first to third, then even to fourth and then come back as required. This technique will help to preserve the clutch under such an application, hence I am mentioning here.

Best regards,

Behram Dhabhar

This is exactly how i did the climb. Thanks BD sir. Glad to know I got the technique right!!
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Old 27th July 2010, 13:38   #56
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Dear Behram Sir,
Beautiful pictures of Thar!!
Hope you share the details of its launch soon.
All the best.
Cheers,
Deepak
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Old 27th July 2010, 13:59   #57
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Well, here goes my report:

We were supposed to meet at McDonald's at Panvel at 7:00am. Everyone got delayed by 15-20 minutes. Arpan and his boss (4x2 Scorpio) were first to arrive at the spot and Gogi (with Viper and Maddy) & Me arrived there soon after. As soon as we reached, we realized that Gogi's jeep was dangerously low on oil and viper went in the scorpio in search of oil.

For some reason McD was shut and we were told that it would take 20 minutes to open and we should wait outside. Within 5 minutes a car came with 4 foreigners and they were let inside and serve. I lost my head completely at the manager and accused him of racism. This is a sad truth in India... the fair skin always gets better treatment.

Soon we get a call from Soumya that his fan belt has broken and he manages to get slowly to McDs. In the meanwhile Nishanth (MudSlinger) and Dad Kishor (Tigerranch) arrive with their Classic (with driver in the back seat). Soumya's jeep is repaired using Gogi's spare fan belt and also topped up with oil. Soon David arrives in his mm550 and we head off towards the resort by 830.

Ibrahim has already left from pune to rendezvous with us.

We finally reach the resort meeting point at around 930 (on the way we manage to pick up two new thars which were hopelessly lost). As we enter the resort, we see a huge number of cars and our car numbers are 82 and above.

I had hoped to see a lot of superbly modified jeeps, however, it so happens that my jeep was the star attraction! We saw a couple of very nicely made Cj340s, however, on close inspection they all turned out to be 4x2s!

We park and head for breakfast. Our extreme offroader stickers are distributed to our group and soon we are inundated with requests from others for stickers.

Ibrahim meanwhile reaches sawarsi and we tell him to come to the resort since it will take time to leave.

After registration (we get a kit bag containing white t-shirts, caps, scorpio music cd and great escape game and our car number stickers) we are called for the briefing.

It was a pleasant surprise that the VP sales specially mentioned that "We are glad that the extreme offroaders are with us and you should listen to their instructions and ask them for help also". Vinod, we are touched by that gesture!

Following that, further instructions are given by Vinod, Mr. Nene, Mr. Bhosle, etc regarding safety, etc.

Two all women teams driving 4x2 scorpios are introduced.

Ibrahim arrives and his gypsy is strictly not allowed into the resort compound! He hops into my jeep as passenger.

We meet up with steiger there as well.

We then head out to the flag off.

Here, we decide that us staying at positions 82 and above is not a good idea. A quick conference with the organizers and we break convoy and head out to the front.

Mahindra had a deal with the toll naka and all cars with mahindra stickers were exempt from paying toll both ways.

A lot of scorpio and pick up drivers were driving horribly and we literally had to reprimand a few of them saying that we won't let you do the trail if this is the way you will drive. You can see me talk to one of the pick up drivers in the pic below.

We reach the turn into sawarsi. All directions are nicely marked by the mahindra team.

Here we let Vinod (pilot car - Scorpio 4x4) go ahead and we join the convoy at approx position 20.

Meet up with mohan and his gang there (he was responsible for arranging for permissions at sawarsi for mahindra). Good job doc!
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Old 27th July 2010, 15:14   #58
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So we head into the trail.

The convoy starts to slow down and we wonder what's happening? Apparently, people keep stopping to take pictures. After several requests, the cars move on.

At a steep tarmac climb, a lot of 2WD scorpios start loosing traction and we guide all of them up. The air was laden with the smell of burning clutch.

Soon we reach another point where the convoy is at a complete standstill.

Both the sides of a rocky path have caved in and vinod is cautious if he should proceed considering there are a lot of 2WD cars. The rains have created a river flowing down this path. After discussions, i take over as spotter, vinod slots his 4x4 into 2WD mode and negotiates the path (so that he knows for sure that the other 2wds can do it as well). Once it's done successfully, other cars start slowly going up as well.

At the end of this rocky path are a couple of slushy turns where the 2WD scorpios with HT tyres found it impossible to get traction. So here my jeep and nishanth's jeep takes over as tow vans and we pull up a lot of scorps.

The next obstacle is horribly slushy and david's car gets bogged down and has to be winched out by mahindra recovery jeep. Other cars are told to take an alternate route.

The rain intensity keeps increasing and coupled with the strong wind, it really hurt the skin.

This is causing the terrain to horribly degrade.

The alternate route is also proving difficult for the 2wds and all of them need to be winch uphill.

This causes a major pill up of cars behind.

We get a bit bored and explored the terrain nearby. The mahindra official video man made us do water drive bys and stunts. Vinod comes back and says that many 2wds are still stuck below and our cars are required to pull them out.

So nishanth and me go back and start pulling the 2wds out.

After a while, i walk all the way down and tell the 2wd owners to pull over to the left and let all the 4wds pass so that we can tow out the 2wds slowly and hold up the convoy.

However, all the boys with their 2wd toys thought they were too good and started overtaking etc and make a huge mess of things.

All the extreme offroaders were spotting and coordinating the 2wds. Mahindra team had it's hands full winching other vehicles way down and trying to repair the broken road.

Vinod takes a wise decision now and calls off the trail due to safety reasons.

Soon the cars start turning back and we indulge in a bit more of slushing around. i try to enter the knee deep slush and am bogged down half way (same place i tried to con BD into taking the thar). nishanth pulls me out.

On the return, again a few 2wds are stuck and are again rescued by us.

Soon we see the thar and soumya head up. BD made his own way up since he wanted to see what was going on. Apparently on the way, a portion of the rocky road gave way and the thar was stuck horribly and had to be winched out.

Soon, we head downwards. On the way, i see one of mohan's friends and ask where he is since he was not seen for a long time. I was told that he went back quite a while ago. Doc, we shall meet later and settle the accounts.

So, tired, hungry and dirty, we head downwards...

...to be continued...
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Old 27th July 2010, 15:49   #59
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We head out of the trail and stop for chai and wadas before heading towards the resort for lunch.

We are famished by the time we reach the resort and gobble up the lunch.

we had planned to do another small OTR afterwards but it got too late and we decided to call it a day much to ibrahim's fury! Poor guy had driven down from pune in his gypsy and he landed up as a passenger and spotter.

We head homewards without incident.

I would specially like to thank gogi, ibrahim, soumya, maddy, nishanth and kishor for making the Extreme Offroaders proud and we gained good recognition for our efforts.

Vinod and team, good job. My thoughts and insights regarding the event coming up in the next post.
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Old 27th July 2010, 15:53   #60
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A few more random pics from the mahindra great escape fan page:
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