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|10th February 2009, 08:19||#16|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Oct 2006
Thanked: 283 Times
pictures to dikh rahe hai,
lekin naam ka pata nahi.
All i can recognize to Mr. ANGM [all new generation moderator khan sir] and distinguished bald bhaiyya.
|10th February 2009, 10:07||#17|
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Weekdays@Chennai, Weekends@Kerala
Thanked: 1,563 Times
Nice pictures, Doc.
BTW, the only auto-rickshaw in India/World with Turbo Intercooler seems to be in Kerala. Cool.
The tyre-god seems to have opted to stick to the bald pate a la Rakesh Roshan.
|10th February 2009, 17:13||#18|
Join Date: Jul 2008
Thanked: 9 Times
Wow . . that looks like a great drive guys, i missed it!! Congrats MaserQ on the successful organising of a neat drive. I think i can imagine how neat it would have been. Awaiting for more pics and reviews guys.
|10th February 2009, 17:41||#19|
Awaiting Email Confirmation
Join Date: Sep 2007
Thanked: 19 Times
Lots of new faces that I wish I'd met. Post some pics of the route if possible, just to get a feel of the roads you drove on.
What was the total distance done on the D R I V E from cochin?
|11th February 2009, 11:17||#22|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Right here .
Thanked: 328 Times
Looks like a wonderful meet ! Guess the "wild" photos of the "Wild in Wayanad" meet will not make it to this report.
Last edited by Blue Thunder : 11th February 2009 at 11:20.
|11th February 2009, 12:59||#23|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Sep 2006
Thanked: 784 Times
Happened to catch up with the bangy boys in Mysore on their return journey. Met up with the tyrewallah from Bhaiyyaland too.
Thanks for the stopover folks. Was nice meeting you all and the cheap guest.
|11th February 2009, 16:52||#25|
Join Date: Mar 2006
Thanked: 16 Times
Good good good!
Meet report is not boring as many would've thought. Only if somebody could spice it up with a peppy wordpile!
|11th February 2009, 18:51||#27|
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Bangalore / Madras
Thanked: 14 Times
How can a(ny) vehicle go wild inside the Tholpetty forest sanctuary? I was told the trail inside the sanctuary was as challenging as the recent Munnar Mahindra Great Escape trail - and found it was true - therefore, no engaging 4H, forget 4L.
I was cruising in 2nd gear 2H all along with the A/C on - Dr. Pull & family were with me and we had an interesting conversation on Tata & FIAT. We knew each other through the Tata Indica Users Group but were meeting in person for the first time.
The A/C was on because the conversation was more interesting than the trail. Other than the trail, I can hardly fault anything in the drive + meet. Hats off to the Kerala gang - one enthusiastic gang of wonderful people.
I think Steeroid has summed it perfectly - next time there's a D R I V E, make sure you're there.
|16th February 2009, 23:54||#30|
Join Date: Feb 2009
Thanked: 23 Times
Aravind Warrier on the other line.
AW: Hey can I speak to you
Silver Knight: I am in a so called meeting @ meeting in Mumbai. No big deal. Tell me.
AW tells about the meet and no wonder I am thrilled. BTW it was going to be my first meet. AW sent the link for the meet.
As AW told (or declared) to Steer taking his Palio to Wayanad will be like taking an Polar Bear to Sahara (no pun intended). I just sold my trusty Zen two weeks back and was totally dependent on my dad’s Wagon R for my official trips for the last two weeks and will continue to do so till my Swift VDI arrives. And not sparing the car for them even for the weekend will result in some very expected but hard to take in reactions from the control room. So the easiest option was a rented car. Booked a Scorpio, but as usual at 12th hour the guy told he has only a Baleno with him. So that’s how the rented golden Baleno.
Baleno Vxi, done 50 K, stock tires (around 10K old) on factory standard Alloys.
The Day has arrived finally. Yours truly and aravindwarrier waiting for Nikkibike and Jay D at Thrissur round. I was wondering how the dukkar fiat ( 1956 model) will reach in one piece from Cochin. But surprise surprise both the Fiat and Nikki’s Swift reached Thrissur well ahead of time than we anticipated.
AW at wheels as I told him with at most modesty that I will not snivel for the keys till Nilambur as I have driven hell lot this route for my official trips. So the trip began. Reached Steers’ home in 45 minutes and Steer was eagerly waiting for his new “ 50 year old cute Baby Fiat Millicento”. We were served a tummy full of idly and poori by his parents as they knew these smart KIDS require lots of energy to burn rubber on the hills.
Nikki and Jay D hopped onto the truck with Steeroid on wheels & whoosh. Yes the Safari really makes a lot of hissing and whistling. So the huge truck in the front with the Baleno following closely. Reached a place called Pattikkad and Steer made the biggest mistake. He went straight following the usual course instead of the better surface with some very interesting twisties.
Our first stop at Nilambur where we had some refreshments.
Silver Knight: Dear its time to change seats.
I know even now AW will be ruing for that decision.
From Nilambur the tarmac was glistening smooth though narrow. Steer’s truck was flying, closely followed by the Suzuki. After Edakkara it was real business. We started the climb. Lean traffic and smooth roads with some of the best corners. I was anxiously waiting to watch the TATA Safari in the corners. But to my surprise it was like taking shark to sea. It was literally eating up the corners with a huge appetite. I was enjoying every bit of the switchbacks with the Baleno. To be very frank (and don’t mistake me as a die hard Suzuki fan) I was impressed with the car. Very comfortable and adequately powered (but poor low-end torque) for spirited driving and felt it was a real underrated car in the Indian market. Corner after corner my confidence was shooting up. Yes I was very aware of the stock tires and the spirited engine was really giving some serious tortures to the tires. But the car was in full control and the slides (very controllable) and squeaks from the rubber were music to ears.
At one point Steer put us in front to watch the Baleno in action. Some where (I don’t remember the place) we stopped for some tea and rest. And I handed over the keys to AW with a feral smirk. AW at wheels and Steers truck in the front.
After a while it was an unassuming left handed hairpin. All of a sudden at the exit point it happened. Out of the blue our Baleno’s the left tire decided “ enough is enough” and gave up! The rear slided to the sides as a testimonial to Newton's First Law: sometimes referred to as the law of inertia.An object at rest tends to stay at rest and an object in motion tends to stay in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force. amen
And in a flash we were heading side ways to the rocks. But AW did hold on to the steering steady and the end result was just the rear left just slided onto to the edge of the road which was deep and came out in a jiffy. Some serious thudding sounds and some under body scrapes and the Baleno was back on the road albeit with a blowed out tire. Steer saw the Baleno doing all these circus and came running as a responsible Bhpian. There was not a single scrap on the alloys even after a severe hammering.
Changed the wheels in a jiffy. Aw continued driving. It was hard to keep the expression on the face not going gloomy. Yes the incident really had some effects on our spirits. It was some 10-15 kms from Wayanad. Damn it. Steer knew a tire shop at Kalpetta and we put a new tire in place of the blowed one. The damage came to be 3K ( We very well knew the tire wallah was taking advantage of the situation pretty neat and tidy. But there was no other option hmm).
Checked into the hotel and met Dr. Pullokkaran and Maser Q there. Some quick bite and we headed to Tholpetty in the Safari, Doctor’s Palio 1.6 and the Baleno. It took almost an hour to reach Tholpetty as I was driving the car at “ super conservative mode” as we doubted a change of camber to the left tires and we were not sure what all have gone kaput under the skin . And the camber thingy was reaffirmed by Dr Pullokkaran as he was following us from Kalpetta to Wayanad.
At Tholpetty quickly we got into Steer’s truck with MaserQ to go into the forest. As hrag told it was uneventful. Came out in an hour and started our journey back. We met the Bangalore team: hrag, prabhuav, khan sulthan and the Cbe team Quick silver, KB100, iraghava and Dr Madhavan at Tholpetty entrance. Some people “volunteered” to go in the bone breaking hired open jeep and enjoyed the safari unadulterated. After some snacking and chit chats we started back to hotel. The convoy consisted of.
1. Hrag’s White Safari
2. Prabhuav’s Black Scorpio
3. Steerer’s Silver Safari
4. Dr Pullokkaran’s golden Palio 1.6
5. Our Golden Baleno
6. Quick Silver’s Honda Accord.
I was really worried and vexed about the left tire and feared that some nasty surprise was lurking around. What if the tire comes out amidst the jungle? Oh My God. But I really appreciate the sincerity and support rendered by the Bhpians to escort us. But apart from that the car was behaving pretty normal and there was not even a slight hitch in the ride or handling.
As we approached Manathavady we decided to take the Baleno to a Maruti service center to make sure that we can carry on with the journey before the car throws up any nasty surprise on us and thought why to play wet blanket for the rest of the team. Time was 8 pm on Saturday and the chances of finding a good service centre in a small town like Mananthavady was bleak. Period. Is what we thought. But it’s a Maruti . Though cannot be compared to a fully fledged one, but it could serve our purpose. We inspected the under body and found out that there was nothing very serious as we feared and it was some thing some where bend a little and the mechanic guaranteed that we can carry on till Thrissur with out any apprehensions. AW conveyed it to MaserQ and told we will be reaching in 45 minutes.
The ladies and kids rested in the rooms while all the Bhpians gathered and started drinking. Period. Pepsi, Thums up, Coco Cola and I forgot some fruit drinks. Usual discussions on bhpians, cars, brands etc etc. Discussions ranged from CSI Kuttikaanam, Fiat, Xylo, Baleno vs Honda City, some techie gyaans from Dr. Pullokkaran, discussion on his junkindica, “ how to MAINTAIN A FIAT”, Swift VDI or Getz Crdi, Verna, Elantra experience by Jay D, Jay Ds vintage deal, Bad A*S*S by RF motors, Steer’s Land Rover, GQ drive experience by hrag, Bihar experience, spine chilling experience on UP roads by Iraghava, shocking people with his new Getz crdi performnce with a humble 1.1 litre tag on the boot etc etc. And our host Maser Q effectively the pestering from the hotel guys. And alas we all called it a day at 3.30 am.
Got up around 8.30 (what else can we expect) got ready and met some of the bhpians at breakfast. Around 11 am (yes this was one lazy trip) we headed to Pookkod Lake. Dr Pullokkaran and Prabhuav’s family went boating and others settled for a tea and some discussions. Meanwhile hrag’s Safari got a puncture and they reached the lake a while after changing the tubes.
Took lunch some where near the lake (I don’t remember it exactly) and decided to part ways. Dr’s Palio, Maser Q’s Esteem, Steer’s Truck and our Baleno headed towards Calicut.
Aw at the wheels and made it clear I am not interested to drive as it was a lackluster affair to drive in this super conservative mode. Started off slowly, but as the corners went by I started hearing or was it an illusion some squeals and was feeling sliding at corners. NO. It was for real. What the **** is this? What about the rear wheel?
But thanks to the heavy traffic he was not able to crack open the throttle. But once we reached the planes ( Calicut bye pass) we gave a damn and decided to push the throttle hard, real hard as we knew nothing much is gonna happen with the car . Baleno went flying till Edappal with no hiccups and melodrama. Now I was tempted. Err with a sheepish smile I asked can I take on? The roads from Edappal were good and Baleno was performing fabulous and we soon forgot the pesky rear wheel. We reached AWs house around 6.30 pm dropped him there and reached home around 7.
Was really a fantastic trip and made some really good friends. Thanks a lot Team Bhp for the platform.
What really happened to the Baleno?
We took it to a Maruti service centre next day morning. There was a slight bend in one of the components and was sorted out with a hydraulic pressing treatment and the damage was just 1K. Yes you read it right, just 1000 INR ( Aravind more into technicalities pls.I had office that day and don’t know the exact details). Handed over the car the same day as nothing happened and that’s it.
Guys please post in the pics and chip in
By the way I am a newbie to this forum.
Eagerly waiting for the next D R I V E.
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