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Old 15th March 2010, 11:21   #1
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Thumbs up Could I have lived to write this (if it were any other car)?

Yesterday I was taking the bro-in-law and sis-in-law and kid to have a dekho at the Taj Mahal. The better half and I wanted to leave early so that we could leave faridabad, leave faridabad, leave faridabad...you get the picture before people woke up.

For some strange reason we all miss the alarms in the morning and we finally get going by 7.30 am. It seems as if everyone is heading out to look at the Taj. So ther we were on the trusty ole Bolero skimming cooly along the Taj carriageway at a comfortable warp five (80-90 kmph). This is like a crusing speed when the other cars have all left you behind at 120 or more.

We are just about to reach palwal, about nine km left, when I feel a thump and the car going out control or doing some crazy dippy move. So without thinking I am pumping the brakes and holding the steering with all my might. I normally have both hands on the wheel with the left at about twelve o'clock and the right at three o'clock.

I struggle for what seems like eternity and my mind is in a state of no mind, intent on gaining control of the vehicle and also bringing it to a halt. Then as it had begun the ole thumper stops near the kerb. We do a quick head count and injury check; all in, all alive and unscathed.

People from the roads come running. I thought that it was a puncture but I see that it isn't. The left wheel has come out of its socket. The ball joint has sheared off. Woo ha! Now I can't think for a while, I just follow the dhaba wala to sit down at his shop. I get everyone to order breakfast as the dhaba guy points at a chap and says that pay him the auto fare and he will get a machanic.

Without too much ado a mechanic comes (he is actually pretty good and knows exactly what he is doing)...blah blah blah blah...car is ready to run. I do a slight test on the unoccupied area near the dhaba and vehicle is running fine. By now all we want to do is get back home and relax and take in what just occurred. On a really bad day a vehicle could have thumped us from behind and that would have been the end of the story. Luckily, it didn't and I am glad that my ole Bolero doesn't topple at ninety and comes to halt at ten meters from a given spot at such a high speed.

The steering had made a bit of noise while turning for a while. The skyline guys had casually mentioned it and topped up the power transmission oil at the last service. The steering had felt a little strange just some twenty minutes before it happened. If nothing else the incident settled the next car debate with the wife (no we can't buy the same car again...how about a shiny Scorpio? No the Scorpio might topple when things go wrong. But we can't buy the same car again?) and the case for the next Bolero (I want the crde turbo) has become stronger.

Has this kinda thing happened to anyone else?

Regards,

Chaunfa
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Old 15th March 2010, 11:48   #2
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This is quite common with trucks when the axle kingpin breaks or shears due to some undue friction with another component. I witnessed a Scorpio with the same issue a few days ago on the Bangalore airport road.

Thank God you are safe and were driving at sane speeds inspite of others overtaking you left right and center. Good restraint always helps.
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Old 15th March 2010, 11:58   #3
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Oh!!! Boy, consider yourself lucky & give offerings & take blessing from your favourite deities. This is the worst, really worst nightmare that I don't even want to think about when driving; I can digest a puncture, engine seizure, gear struck, doors jammed, wiper & A/C both not working on heavy rains & even headlights not working at nights, but wheels getting off (as I write this I feel a shiver through my body), I cannot imagine you've come out alive.

Thanks your stars
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Old 15th March 2010, 11:58   #4
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I have seen this happening on a Brand new fortuner.
its a machine and parts may fail overtime
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Old 15th March 2010, 11:59   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaunfa View Post
The steering had felt a little strange just some twenty minutes before it happened.
Hi chaunfa, I am happy all of you escaped unscathed!

Can you please elaborate a little more on the strange feeling of the steering (twenty minutes before the incident), so that this can alert others in future ?

Regards
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Old 15th March 2010, 14:15   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chaunfa View Post
I thought that it was a puncture but I see that it isn't. The left wheel has come out of its socket. The ball joint has sheared off.
You have been very very lucky indeed. We have also been saved from something similar when i was driving a Fiat 1100 in the 90s when driving through a single lane road , a Mahindra van had a front right wheel ball joint broke away when he was crossing us from the opposite direction and he came into our rear right side door. Thankfully we were travelling at sane speeds.

Another instance was when i was travelling on a friend's jeep and the wheel of the trailer came of in the middle of a busy town. A old woman was hurt very badly.

God bless all of us
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Old 15th March 2010, 14:54   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mooza View Post
Hi chaunfa, I am happy all of you escaped unscathed!

Can you please elaborate a little more on the strange feeling of the steering (twenty minutes before the incident), so that this can alert others in future ?

Regards
The feeling is as if something is grinding or rubbing on the steering, I guess any strange feeling on the steering should be a reason to stop. I wish I had heeded it. Now, the strange part while filling up fuel near the border my bro-in-law swears he got three flashes of intuition telling him not to go to Agra. Then we all missed the alarms. Plus I had no desire to really go but over rode my feelings as I thought that it was natural reluctance to rise and run on a Sunday morning. I guess one must respect intuition after this.
Thank you all for your wishes.
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Old 15th March 2010, 17:13   #8
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Do you have any photos of yout vehicle when this happened, to show the damage?
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Old 15th March 2010, 20:37   #9
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Holy cow! Now thats really scary! As close as possible to losing a wheel at 80kmph,and anything could have happened. Thank God you and your family were saved from what could have been absolute disaster.
Hope the truck's been looked at by the Mahindra folks, and all necessary repairs done.
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Old 15th March 2010, 21:42   #10
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Good to know that you and your family are safe buddy !!.

Back in 1991,one of my friend's sister died coz of Jeep's front wheel came out off the hub and hit her. She was walking by the side of the road.

I guess this is an existing problem with Mahindras.
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Old 16th March 2010, 01:48   #11
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Good to know you are safe! There is an old Tamil movie where an Impala's wheels will come off, never thought that can happen in modern cars!!
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Old 16th March 2010, 12:33   #12
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That is scary and you can thank your stars you are safe !

The rush on NH2 yesterday was because of Mayawati's Rally in Lucknow
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Old 16th March 2010, 15:12   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superleggera View Post
Good to know that you and your family are safe buddy !!.

Back in 1991,one of my friend's sister died coz of Jeep's front wheel came out off the hub and hit her. She was walking by the side of the road.

I guess this is an existing problem with Mahindras.
Sad to know about your friend's sister.
While problems do happen with Mahindra vehicles, one should also take into account that they are the vehicles most abused & overloaded by drivers. I have frequently seen over 10 people crammed up in these Mahindra Jeeps!
I experienced the left front wheel come off my Ambassador as a kid, while my father was driving (way back in the 80s) with no casulaties, luckily. Needless to add, the car was overloaded with 8 people at the time!

However, I don't think overloading was the case with chaunfa, maybe a more detailed analysis would come out later from him, after the repairs!
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Old 26th March 2010, 04:22   #14
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You are lucky. Just like the bloke in a Santro and his wife who wanted to take a short cut to Kamanahalli, Bangalore East and decided to go via an unmanned level crossing below the Lingarajapuram overbridge. Bloke gets onto the track, train whizzes round the corner and drags his car 200 meters and then deposits it on the side of the tracks. Train then eventually stops. Bloke is okay and so is his wife, shaken and stirred. Car is damanged, but not too much. Lucky bloke.
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Old 26th March 2010, 12:27   #15
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Django, it was a Palio am sure story would have been different of it was a Santro
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