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Old 1st May 2015, 23:55   #4726
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Oh so do they give some document which acts as temporary license?
Yes they give a temporary paper license. The time in CA are ridiculous, I had to wait 2 months before I got my card. To add the wait times are DMV are an hour average and appointments booked thru July in most of the DMV.

I think IL is the best, they print your license right at the DMV.
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Old 2nd May 2015, 01:06   #4727
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I found this parked in our office parking lot. What is it? Is it road legal? Is it a Caterham maybe? Are Caterhams road legal in the US? I guess it has to be road legal because it has a license plate on it. I couldn't find a name on it, nothing. Wow I would love to drive that.

Attachment 1366125
Looks like a knock-off of the Ariel Atom. It could even be an earlier model.

http://arielatom.com/
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Old 3rd May 2015, 19:12   #4728
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

The Autocross school was a lot of fun yesterday!! It was tough to get up at 5 in the morning on a Saturday but it was totally worth it in the end.

I didn't get time to take any pictures but Fraz33r was nice enough to show up and click a lot of photos. I am guessing it will take him some time to filter through them. He gathered quite a bit of fan following too at the track

So, here is how the event went:

7:20AM I reached the New Hampshire Motor Speedway main gate and signed their waiver.

7:40AM I managed to figure out where the SCCCNH (that's Sports Car Club of New Hampshire) trailer was and signed another waiver form over there. Got a key chain and a small plaque for registering.

By 8 almost everyone was there. I was surrounded by a sea of Miatas and other hatchbacks!
Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-img_1128.jpg

I was hoping for the Camry to show up and give me some company but sadly it didn't show up. Anyway, went for tech inspection and they asked me to fill the air to 40 PSI and when I told them it is already at 40, they were somewhat surprised at how heavy the car is!

8 - 9:30 we listened to a lecture about autocrossing. Most of the stuff was from the novice handbook so nothing new there. We were 27 drivers, and were divided into groups of 3 each, with an instructor per group. My instructor had 2 drivers in one car, which was his to start with, since one of the drivers was his nephew or something.

And then started a few exercises. First was about braking hard in straight line before taking a tight turn, second was a figure 8 which i totally wrecked first time out, and last was the slalom which was super fun!!

Some time during second exercise, I spot Fraz33r clicking away. We exchange greetings and he gets back to clicking and i get back to avoiding cones.

Exercises done, we break for lunch.

Post lunch, another hour long session while they set up the course. The most important part of autocross is walking the course. If you don't have the course memorized and your attack planned, you are going to keep getting surprised by the course and will never get a good result. Why this is important? So that you know where to look when you have already set yourself up for the next corner.

If you hit a cone, you are penalized 2 seconds. If you go off course, you are penalized 20 seconds! If you do any of these things, put it behind you and look forward. We got 2 runs on the course, and my first time, I hit the cone right at the start line Second time out was much better because i got a better understanding of where I could push the car and where i needed to brake hard. The car did quite well for its size and left the trainer a bit surprised too. I managed to do a best of 55.389 on my second run which I am told is quite respectable for a full size sedan. The Miatas and STs etc were of course in the mid 40s.

I think I have definitely caught the bug. Next one is on June 7th. Need to start laying the groundwork at home for that now. Hehehe
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Old 4th May 2015, 01:10   #4729
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by kraft.wagen View Post
Yes they give a temporary paper license. The time in CA are ridiculous, I had to wait 2 months before I got my card. To add the wait times are DMV are an hour average and appointments booked thru July in most of the DMV.

I think IL is the best, they print your license right at the DMV.
They print your license at the MVA in MD too. However, in MD there is nearly a two month wait to get an appointment at the MVA for a driving test.
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Old 5th May 2015, 19:25   #4730
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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The Autocross school was a lot of fun yesterday!!

.....
He gathered quite a bit of fan following too at the track

.......
Haha! It was a great experience just to be the spectator and watch the cars being pushed to their limits. Amitoj's car is a beast but the sounds it makes is just amazing to hear from the outside.

Since I was the only photographer there, I did get quite a few requests to send their pics over.

Here are some of the pics from the event.

Acing the Cone:

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-_mg_5966.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image4.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image14.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image17.jpg


Track walk through discussion:

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image12.jpg


Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image32.jpg



Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image19.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image25.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image39.jpg



There was a drifting track where people brought in their modified beasts and went crazy..

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image7.jpg

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-image9.jpg
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Old 5th May 2015, 20:15   #4731
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Acing the Cone:
I am happy to note that I was looking where I wanted to go, and not where the car was heading at that moment!
Patting my own back
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Old 5th May 2015, 21:48   #4732
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Can someone who got their motorcycle license share their DL experience? I have been told it's a lot tougher to get a DL for the same. Anything that I can prep before I head in that direction?
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Old 5th May 2015, 22:19   #4733
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Can someone who got their motorcycle license share their DL experience? I have been told it's a lot tougher to get a DL for the same. Anything that I can prep before I head in that direction?
It is not tough at all! Basically three steps (at least here in CA):
- Write written test (if you fail, write again the same day. you have three attempts). They will give you a learners permit, you can ride with this itself except at night / with a pillion / on the freeway (I think. Not sure about freeway).
- Take the motorcycle training course (or take the test, but the training is highly recommended both for learning and for fun). At the end of the training they will hold a series of tests but I think anyone who has been riding a bike in India can pass these. They will give you a certificate.
- Take the learners permit and this certificate to the DMV and you're done! They will give you a new license with "M" on it. Ah that feeling .

Quote:
Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
I am happy to note that I was looking where I wanted to go, and not where the car was heading at that moment!
Patting my own back
Autocross is a great experience isn't it! Glad you enjoyed it! Is it your first one?
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Old 5th May 2015, 22:47   #4734
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Can someone who got their motorcycle license share their DL experience? I have been told it's a lot tougher to get a DL for the same. Anything that I can prep before I head in that direction?
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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
It is not tough at all! Basically three steps (at least here in CA):
- Write written test (if you fail, write again the same day. you have three attempts). They will give you a learners permit, you can ride with this itself except at night / with a pillion / on the freeway (I think. Not sure about freeway).
- Take the motorcycle training course (or take the test, but the training is highly recommended both for learning and for fun). At the end of the training they will hold a series of tests but I think anyone who has been riding a bike in India can pass these. They will give you a certificate.
- Take the learners permit and this certificate to the DMV and you're done! They will give you a new license with "M" on it. Ah that feeling .
Almost same here in New Hampshire as well. Let me highlight just one more advantage of taking the motorcycle safety course. They provide you with a bike for the course. And if you clear the course, you dont need to worry about arranging for a bike for the test anymore.

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Autocross is a great experience isn't it! Glad you enjoyed it! Is it your first one?
Yes. This was my first one. I hope to do a few more before moving on to a bigger circuit.
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Old 6th May 2015, 02:15   #4735
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Can someone who got their motorcycle license share their DL experience? I have been told it's a lot tougher to get a DL for the same. Anything that I can prep before I head in that direction?
Its very easy, I got my permit in Chicago.

Two ways to get the license
1) Take the Motorcycle Safety Foundation(MSF) course. This used to be a free course three yrs ago in IL. Once you complete the course, go the the DMV and get the permit endorsed in your license. Highly recommended route as MSF will give you lot of insights on riding and practice.

2) Written Test and Drive test at DMV.
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Old 8th May 2015, 02:12   #4736
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Does anyone know whats a typical cost factor involved with Tinting your car windows. Whats the typical percentage to go for?
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Old 8th May 2015, 04:03   #4737
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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The Autocross school was a lot of fun yesterday!! It was tough to get up at 5 in the morning on a Saturday but it was totally worth it in the end.

I think I have definitely caught the bug. Next one is on June 7th. Need to start laying the groundwork at home for that now. Hehehe
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fraz33r View Post
Haha! It was a great experience just to be the spectator and watch the cars being pushed to their limits. Amitoj's car is a beast but the sounds it makes is just amazing to hear from the outside.

Since I was the only photographer there, I did get quite a few requests to send their pics over.

Here are some of the pics from the event.
Looks like a tremendous time, guys. Definitely worth the effort and time. Just make sure the car is beefed up properly if, this becomes a regular event.

Which reminds me, Amitoj, does the Charger have 'dry sump lubrication'? This is my one caveat to using 'regular' cars in such events. Depending on the degree of cornering in the event, there is a possibility of oil starvation to parts of the engine, for cars without dry sump lubrication. Something to think about, that's all.
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Old 8th May 2015, 17:05   #4738
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Does anyone know whats a typical cost factor involved with Tinting your car windows. Whats the typical percentage to go for?
New Hampshire tinting limits are quite restrictive. Anything beyond that you'll need a medical certificate to prove that the sunlight causes you health issues

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Originally Posted by VLOCT View Post

Which reminds me, Amitoj, does the Charger have 'dry sump lubrication'? This is my one caveat to using 'regular' cars in such events. Depending on the degree of cornering in the event, there is a possibility of oil starvation to parts of the engine, for cars without dry sump lubrication. Something to think about, that's all.
I doubt my car has that. Do Miatas have that? I have participated in one High Performance Driver Event and one Autocross so far. No one mentioned anything about dry sumps. Most autocross laps are under a minute and never back to back. Is that enough to cause oil starvation?
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Old 8th May 2015, 20:40   #4739
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

I would confirm that your car doesn't have dry sump (or forced) lube, before assuming anything. If it doesn't, then it obviously depends on how often you're doing it, how stressed the engine is (probability is that it will be high) if and when there is oil starvation and above all, these are machines, your prediction is as good as mine.

Sorry, don't know about Miatas. But any 'sports/performance' car worth it's salt has forced lubrication. It ensures that the oil is pumped to all locations at all times.

As I have repeatedly stated here, any kind of track driving on a regular basis has a price to pay. That's why I always recommend a dedicated track car. Buy a cheap car, build to whatever spec you want it and then take it to the track. You don't need anything fancy for driver comfort inside the car. I don't recommend track time with a regularly used newer family or personnel car, especially for a fixed pay check guy/gal, depending on the size of the paycheck, of course. Deterioration will be much more rapid, not to mention the regular hits on the pay checks.
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Old 8th May 2015, 22:33   #4740
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

You can use a baffled oil sump to avoid oil starvation.
To know if you have the issue on the track, use an obd reader and do a datalog of your oil pressure throughout the event and check if it falls below acceptable levels.
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