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Old 8th December 2011, 09:58   #361
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

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Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
Till we get integrated, real-time traffic data etc. in India, I don't think it makes sense to fully rely on these maps. My personal take.

Lesson learnt. Proper planning with physical road maps/top level guidance from Google Maps/friendly passerby inputs better than over-reliance on detailed GPS/ digital directions - within the city or outside the city.
Yep Google Maps does not work for Navigation in the true sense. Map My India GPS solution is the best for India, with sensible recommended routes at most times.

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I have the following issues with the vehicle that I want to sort out:

1. Engine doesn't crank at times (but usually does at the second try or if I lock and unlock the vehicle with the key). Most likely the battery terminals need to be tightened or cleaned. Or maybe capacitor or key issue. I get a slight 'kat' or click sound as I turn the key (when the engine doesn't crank). This happens say 1 out of 10 times.

2. Pressure in left front wheel goes down to 25-26 (from 30) after a few days but doesn't go lower. Minute puncture perhaps, as some folks have suggested.

3. A slight thud sound in the early morning if I go over a steep bump or deepish hole. Goes away during daytime. Wonder what is causing this? Maybe the stepney tyre set-up needs to be lubricated? Or maybe some lubricant needs warming up? Why would this happen? If something is wrong, why would the sound go away during daytime or after a 30-60 minutes of running? I have noticed the same problem with the SX4.
1) Could also be a weak Battery and if it is new due to low batter water levels. Check that out yourself. Though of course could be one of the reasons that you mention. Cold start issue in Winter are normally due to the battery getting weaker.

2) You sure seem to have a nail in that wheel.

3) This could be due to a Shock Absorber getting stuck and going back to its default position too fast till it gets better lubricated after a few iterations. Having it also happen on the SX4 seems to indicate the same. It would help the service advisor reach the core if you are able to pinpoint the specfic wheel where this is happening. If this is indeed the issue they should replace that particular Shock Absorber under warranty - but you may have to leave the vehicle overnight for them to spot the defect in the morning after an idle period.
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Old 12th December 2011, 10:32   #362
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Went for a night drive to the Nilgiris during the weekend. Reached in 4.45 hrs driving on NH 209. Impressed with the way one can drive at high speed in the night on all sorts of roads with absolute no light. The Fortuner performed really well. I didn't use the Lightforce spots and relied on stock lights to light my way. Even with front sunfilm, the high beam is pretty adequate for fast driving especially if there are no incoming high beams.

The Fortuner performed well during the night drive.

Spent the eclipse evening on a machaan listening to the sounds of the jungle and looking at the moon.

A few pictures will follow.

Vehicle will go for servicing this week.

Last edited by nilanjanray : 12th December 2011 at 10:58.
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Old 13th December 2011, 20:25   #363
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Default Eclipse in the jungle

A few pictures from the trip mentioned above that included that interesting night drive to the jungles via NH 209 (Bangalore - Kanakpura - Malavalli - Chamrajanagar - Gundlepet - Bokkapuram). While driving saw 7-8 snakes crossing the road. Why? Maybe because crops were being cut? or maybe they always cross the road during night, and I saw them because I usually don't drive on that road at night?

Anyway, bright moon + near empty highway + scenic countryside + a powerful and capable beast make for a good combination.

Sunset reflecting on the Bison
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-002.jpg

The Bison grazing below a treehouse. Was joined a few hours later by an elephant who thankfully didn't take an interest to the other black creature.
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-001.jpg

Wonder what he sees as he soars over everything
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-004.jpg

Don't know the names, but these birds looked beautiful against the backdrop of the hills
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-008.jpg

The moon on the eclipse evening (eclipse had already started). Photo taken using lower shutter speed (higher aperture) to catch the reflection on the clouds.
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-015.jpg

They made quite a racket as evening set in...
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-007.jpg

Moonrise
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-011.jpg

The moon before the eclipse effect started being visible. Sometime late in the evening.
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-012.jpg

This tree is popular with all sorts of birds. Offers a good view of a meadow and potential food/prey.
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-014.jpg

Peak eclipse time.
Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 100,000 kms up!-misc-nilgiris-016.jpg

Ever spent an evening just by yourself waiting for sunset and moonrise in the middle of the jungle on a watchtower? That is what I did on the eclipse evening. Cold wind from the Nilgiri mountains, deer alarm calls (a leopard prowling around out of sight - I could sense its movements by the way deers started calling from different areas), day bird calls giving way to night bird cries, a full moon rising, then the eclipse, then the full moon again and a solitary elephant...will remember that evening for quite a while.

Last edited by nilanjanray : 13th December 2011 at 20:28.
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Old 13th December 2011, 21:27   #364
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Amazing pic of the Bison . The masinagudi area is truly an nature lovers paradise . I have been there once 5 years ago , do not remember exactly the place . whats the name of this resort ? any link / website ?

wonderful set of pictures , keep them coming and wish you and your bison a happy grazing in the wild .
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Old 13th December 2011, 21:30   #365
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Those are mindblowing pics nilanjan.
Totally love the fortuner,will be booking the facelifted one very shortly.
What lens are you using?I am an amature photographer with a canon 7d and a 18-135 mm lens and a decent tripod.I want to buy a lens similar to yours for night photography.
Thanks.
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Old 13th December 2011, 22:21   #366
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

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Amazing pic of the Bison . The masinagudi area is truly an nature lovers paradise . I have been there once 5 years ago , do not remember exactly the place . whats the name of this resort ? any link / website ?

wonderful set of pictures , keep them coming and wish you and your bison a happy grazing in the wild .
Thanks. The resort name is Forest Hills. Where I usually stay (the machaan/treehouse) - those places are pretty rustic, far away from the main area, and visited by wild animals. But great for solitude. I was at another resort, and there a group of guys were blasting music till late night. As a result, the animals stayed away. Can't these folks leave their ipods and speakers etc. at home?

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Originally Posted by kedarwalke View Post
Those are mindblowing pics nilanjan.
Totally love the fortuner,will be booking the facelifted one very shortly.
What lens are you using?I am an amature photographer with a canon 7d and a 18-135 mm lens and a decent tripod.I want to buy a lens similar to yours for night photography.
Thanks.
Thanks Kedar. It is one capable beast, and will not let you down for many years.

I was using a Nikkor 70-300. Like taking nature and wildlife photos, though don't have the proper gear yet. Missed a more capable lens during my MP trip this year. But rest of the time, a heavy lens is an overkill, given that I am not a birder.

Your 7D is a great camera. I use a D90, and plan to upgrade after sometime. The D7000 and D300S are not that much of a VFM upgrade, and I don't want to go for a full frame given that I like taking wildlife photos.

With your camera, you just need to crop a bit with your current lens. Given the higher resolution, I think the photos will come out fine. Though you could always go for the great Canon 100-400 mm lens that will do justice to your camera and resolution.

Last edited by nilanjanray : 13th December 2011 at 22:24.
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Old 13th December 2011, 22:49   #367
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Saw a black XUV5OO near an atm yesterday. I parked beside it since I needed some cash. Should have taken a photo - two black SUVs side by side.

It looks good - like a standard international crossover e.g. I find it looking similar to the Outlander.

But I think I will not be in a hurry to sell off my Fortuner and go for it :-)
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Old 14th December 2011, 04:03   #368
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Default Re: Eclipse in the jungle

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Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
A few pictures from the trip mentioned above that included that interesting night drive to the jungles via NH 209 (Bangalore - Kanakpura - Malavalli - Chamrajanagar - Gundlepet - Bokkapuram).
Hi Nils,
Once again some terrific snaps, of both kinds of wildlife - mechanical and natural.
The first snap of the Bison is truly delightful. And to speak nothing of the other glorious snaps. Loved the last but one snap.
Keep them coming !

Last edited by Guderian : 14th December 2011 at 04:05.
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Old 16th December 2011, 11:13   #369
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Vehicle at the service centre.

Luckily while the vehicle was waiting to be sent inside the workshop, the starting problem occurred. So these guys know what is happening.

Unluckily, the vehicle hasn't started even now. This almost never happens. The key was kept in the ignition slot for 5 minutes while the vehicle was waiting (since that is their standard practice once a vehicle is delivered for service). Was it because of that? Is there some bug in the key or immobilizer?

They are thinking of pushing it to the workshop. I had to come back for office work, but I hope that pushing a 4WD vehicle for 30-40 feet would be all right in 4H mode. I thought of putting it in N but the chances of them putting it in 4HL or 4LL were too high (not too many people are aware about 4WD systems there). I wish I didn't have to come back and could spend the whole day there.

I forgot to take a spare key so that we could eliminate the key hypothesis, because I didn't expect the problem to crop up at the service centre. One technician after a preliminary glance said that it is a start problem. Let's see...

Too much work and am also down with flu. Else I would have been inside the workshop checking what they are doing.

Last edited by nilanjanray : 16th December 2011 at 11:15.
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Old 16th December 2011, 11:52   #370
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

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Originally Posted by nilanjanray View Post
but I hope that pushing a 4WD vehicle for 30-40 feet would be all right in 4H mode. I thought of putting it in N but the chances of them putting it in 4HL or 4LL were too high (not too many people are aware about 4WD systems there).
Nilanjan, since the Bison is not an AT, there shouldn't be an issue.

But if possible please call them up and ask them to put it into 'N' before they push it around; I personally would be more relieved then. But then calling them up now and asking them to do this might be calling for trouble, they might slot it into 4HL or 4LL

And I share the same with you regarding unavailability of atleast that ONE skilled mechanic who has knowledge about 4WD systems.

Hope you recover from your flu soon!!!
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Old 16th December 2011, 12:04   #371
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

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Nilanjan, since the Bison is not an AT, there shouldn't be an issue.

But if possible please call them up and ask them to put it into 'N' before they push it around; I personally would be more relieved then. But then calling them up now and asking them to do this might be calling for trouble, they might slot it into 4HL or 4LL

And I share the same with you regarding unavailability of atleast that ONE skilled mechanic who has knowledge about 4WD systems.

Hope you recover from your flu soon!!!
Thanks!

OK, live update: the vehicle finally started, and they have taken it inside the workshop. Checking the starter motor now. They have quoted close to Rs. 5K for the 20000km servicing (inclusive of engine oil, oil filter, wheel balancing etc. - parts + labour)

I had mentioned there were 3 problems with the vehicle. One problem has been identified: the left front tyre had a tiny nail, so that it why it was losing pressure. Puncture will be repaired.

Two more problems to sort out.
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Old 16th December 2011, 12:35   #372
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

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OK, live update: the vehicle finally started, and they have taken it inside the workshop.
Two more problems to sort out.
Hi Nils,
Sorry to hear about this issue.
Just occurred to me that this could be an issue with the key/key circuit as well. The key does face a lot of dust n muck issues therefore the buttons not releasing fully after being depressed etc. Have them to check the key - get them to open and clean it in front of you.

I have some doubts about their diagnosis around the starter issue.
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Old 16th December 2011, 12:51   #373
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5K is ok for the Fortuner i.e. For the 20 k service . Hope they sort out all the issues and you get back the Bison in shape for another round of grazing in the wild
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Old 17th December 2011, 01:00   #374
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Nilanjan, I'd like to agree with Guderian here..
Hope you are recuperating well from the flu. You may get a chance to try out your 2nd key the next time you visit the ASC.
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Old 17th December 2011, 09:37   #375
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Default re: Soldier of Fortune: Wanderings with a Trusty Toyota Fortuner - 80000 km update

Amazing photographs. The Bison looks at home. Are you into photography as well?
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