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Old 10th April 2012, 12:40   #1
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Thumbs up The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Hey,

It's always nice when we get a new car at home.
There's that initial discussion about the need, the first bubbles of excitement. The tingling feeling of going on test drives, with a mission to analyze and select the most suitable, and more importantly desirable vehicle.

Well. To begin with, in this case I missed out on most of that.

Reason: I was in Mumbai. And the car was needed for my sister in Delhi.

And so I decided the only thing that I could do was to suggest various options that she could go in for.

A while later, I realized, heck I can take the test drives in Mumbai too! Otherwise how is "The Mission" ever gonna get accomplished?

And so it began.
The budget: About 3 lacs
Monthly Running: 1000 kms tops
Priorities: Good looks. Mileage of about 15 kmpl. Strong AC. Low maintenance costs.

The Contenders:
A-Star, Alto, i10, Beat.
As my family headed to the Maruti Suzuki dealership in Okhla, I had a feeling we would have a winner in the A-Star. I had given my reviews on the vehicle having test driven it in Mumbai a while back.
Along with my review on the Alto.

As it turns out, A-Star was shortlisted, but only just.
Low space at the back bench, a tiny boot, and the fact that our neighbor also had the same car didn't help its case too much.
FYI. The neighbor factor is a typical Delhi thing

Anyway. Then came the i10.
Everything was nice about the car.
Only problem is, it was only nice. Nothing more, nothing less.
And the Hyundai brand didn't really help things. But that was mostly a problem I had.

Now came the Beat.
Another American company selling a product mostly developed in Korea.
But man, did it look good.
Both the interiors and exteriors plucked on the heart string.
Functionality was decent. The engine performance was OK. Better than i10, IMO. The AC was a true chiller. And the OEM seats had excellent pattern on the fabric.
And the looks. Oh, the looks. Did I already mention they were awesome? Lol.
Features were good too.

That did it.
The Chevy Beat won. The LS variant was selected. The Cocktail Green was opted for.

With nothing coming for free from the dealership apart from the factory fitted things, the car was driven home in May 2010.
Luckily, I had a trip to Delhi around June.

Me and my sis took the car to Lajpat Nagar to get the audio unit fitted.
I had heard of Elegant. So took it there.
We opted for a Pioneer HU. Single DIN with in-dash CD Player, iPod Ready USB, Aux-In. JBL coax in the front. JBL 6x9 coax on a new tray in the rear.
We were happy.

But as in most stories, this is more of a prologue.
Coming Up, fast forward to four months. My next trip to Delhi.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam

Last edited by samarth.bhatia : 10th April 2012 at 12:43. Reason: Too many smileys. :)
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Old 10th April 2012, 12:52   #2
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Default re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Let me be the first one to congratulate you.

The Chevrolet Beat is a really good looking car. Very stylish and definitely an "out-of-the-box" stuff. The looks are very unconventional, yet appealing. I especially like the speedometer design, just like in superbikes.

Does Chevrolet stiff offer the 3-year free service stuff that it used to offer some time back ? Needless to say include some pics inside out for us to feast on.

Drive safe !!

Last edited by HorsPwr : 10th April 2012 at 12:53.
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Old 10th April 2012, 13:15   #3
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Default re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

I appreciate your fast reply.
And thank you for the wishes.

Now, the problem is that there are pics of the car in its current avatar.

It should suffice to say that the car was pretty much in its stock form until Feb 2012. Will definitely put up the pics once the story gets there . Hope you understand.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam
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Old 10th April 2012, 16:19   #4
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Default re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

And so the story continues.

Four months later, I came to Delhi once more.
What do I get to know?
The car was in an accident that damaged the front right (driver's side) of the vehicle.
Bad enough that the fender and door had to be completely replaced!

Let's just say that the first two months of ownership, and one thing was clear.
Even Chevy is not able to manage putting the car back in shape in the original Cocktail Green shade.
So now the front right of the car was more mustard yellow than the rest of the vehicle.

And something that I expected. The car wasn't rejected due to this problem as that would've meant waiting for another couple of days.

In the next couple of months, as is common in Delhi, the car got nicks and scratches pretty much every where apart from maybe the roof.
Meanwhile I was back in Mumbai.
And then the happy news came in April 2011. My sister had found the love of her life. The marriage was fixed for January 2012.

I quit my job in Mumbai to join my father at his business in Delhi.
Got back to Delhi in Aug 2011.

And I had to drive around my dad's old Elantra Petrol. Excellent value for money car. Brilliantly comfortable. But having crossed about 80000 kms, it didnt make sense to invest on getting anything done on the car.

One road trip from Delhi to Ludhiana proved that the Elantra was comfortable. But it also had a fuel pump that gave some trouble. Moreover, the highway journey just made me realize that I had to buy an SUV to be more comfortable and safe on the highways.

But the SUV was forgotten in a couple of weeks, after realizing that I preferred a smaller car. For various reasons. One of them being it is amazingly easy to find parking.

So once my sister got married, I decided to keep the Beat. And after about six months of not doing anything on the Elantra, I finally got an opportunity to work on the Beat

If I may be allowed, I'd like to give you guys a sneak peak before the story progresses.

The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-img_0397001.jpg

I hope you are enjoying the progress of the story.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam

PS: You can notice the difference in shade between the bonnet and the front right fender and driver's door.
PPS: First pic of my Beat on my 100th post on T-Bhp

Last edited by samarth.bhatia : 11th April 2012 at 11:01. Reason: Adding PS and PPS!
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Old 11th April 2012, 12:49   #5
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Post re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Moving on, in Feb of this year, I finally started work on the Beat.
Oh how I had waited!

As mentioned, the only thing apart from standard items on the car was the stereo system.
And I had noticed that the *new* rear tray that had been put along with the rear speakers was on the floor of the boot! Since atleast 5 months! And my sister hadn't really noticed.

Now I had been going through the ICE section for sometime. Had heard a lot about the store Driven. Tried looking them up on Google. And the only thing I saw was their FB page (apart from the thread on TBhp).
It was nice to see a large fan base. I had been looking for someone to do a professional job. And having seen the thread on the Carputer installation on the Chevrolet Forester, I thought Driven is the one to go to.

Please remember that I had to take out perfectly good JBL speakers and even the Pioneer HU. I had a JVC 2-DIN HU with 2 USB ports, Aux-In, Bluetooth, CD Player and 3 pre-outs waiting to get installed here. It had been with my uncle and he was nice enough to let me have it .

astonlobo's thread on his ICE in the Beat gave me some ideas about the speaker combination to have.

Finally I decided on Hertz coax in the front, Hertz coax 5" on the rear in the stock location, Kenwood 4 channel amp, Rockford Fosgate Punch series sub. And the speaker cabling would be Gladen pure copper cabling, along with the power kit and amp and woofer cabling from Connexion.

It did take the better half of a day to finish this.
But it was completely worth it. I can now understand why it is said that the cabling is the most important bit of getting good SQ.

In about a weeks time, I had gotten installed various things out of my wish list:
-The ICE setup
-3M SP series 50% tints on the side, and 70% visibility tints on the front windshield.
-Flying Eagle 14" alloys with Yokohama A-Drive 195/60 R14 tyres.
-A security system by Auto Central Locking by
-HID Headlamps by Ollo
-DRLs by Telefunken
-Some LED lights in various locations: in the front bumper. Below the dashboard, below the front seats, in the boot.
-Reversing camera along with Worldtech on mirror screen.
-Reversing parking sensors.
-Visors on the windows.
-New number plates
-My Jabra Freeway bluetooth device carried over from my old car.
-K&N Conical Air Filter


Some Pics:

Front Daytime View:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-front-daytime-1.jpg

Rear Daytime View:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-rear-daytime.jpg

Some Interior Shots:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-interior-daytime-1.jpg
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-interior-daytime-2.jpg
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-interior-daytime-3.jpg
Name:  Interior Daytime 4.JPG
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Size:  79.1 KB

ICE in the back:
Rear Speaker HERTZ Energy
Name:  Rear Speaker Day 1.JPG
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Name:  Rear Speaker Day 2.JPG
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Size:  166.5 KB

Rockford Fosgate Punch P1 Sub
Name:  Sub Daytime.JPG
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Kenwood 4 Channel Amplifier:
Name:  Amp Daytime.JPG
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Sorry about the pic quality. They were taken in a hurry. Will put up better ones ASAP.



Initial Driving Impressions

Some Positives:

1. Ergonomics:
The driver's seat has amazing contours. Now I am no Size zero model! So it takes a pretty wide seat to make me comfortable. And I gotta say. The beat has a driver's seat that works brilliantly for me. If only it was a spot wider.
All the controls fall easily at hand.
Being about 6'1", I need all the leg space that I can get. And by pushing the driver's seat to its rear most position is bit too much space, even for me!
The rear seat, although I have only sat there once, are not that great. The under thigh support is negligible. But leg room at the rear is pretty decent.

2. The Brakes:
I used to drive the Elantra before this. No point in comparing cars that are so many segments apart. But the brakes on the Beat are pretty good. They have a nice bite to them and are progressive enough with the stock tires.

3. Headlamps:
They have a decent throw. Not too bad. But I do need better.

4. Steering:
The car is easy to direct. Whether going forwards or backwards. The feedback from the steering could be better.
The steering is pretty nicely contoured and that is something I really like. It has the right bends and curves to comfortable hold it. The horn button is also decently sized and approachable.

5. Interiors:
They look brilliant. They feel good, again for this segment. Plenty of useful storage spaces around the driver. The glove box could have been a bit bigger. The storage space under the A/C controls is brilliant to hide stuff from prying eyes. No laptops, but the occasional cash, mobile, cards, wallet etc.
And the two streams of light that light up the cup holders ahead of the gear lever look amazing. And very useful.

6. ABC Pedals:
These are good to use. The clutch is slightly harder than I am used to, but it's something that I can live with.

7. ORVMs:
These are pretty good too. They are decently sized and allow a good field of vision.

8. High Seat Position:
I love the high seat position, giving a commanding view of the road. A very good change after the Elantra and the M800 I used to drive earlier.
Also makes the ingress and egress a breeze.

The Negatives:

1. Non-tiltable steering:
Since the steering doesn't adjust for height, I find it too high for my comfort.
Again it's something to get used to.

2. Width of the Pedal Well:
While driving, my left knee constantly touches the knob for switching on the AC fan. And that is quite irritating. Since the switch is rotary, there have been various times when the Fan gets switched on after I depress the clutch after a gear change.
Also, there is no space to rest my left foot when cruising. And the inclination of the pedals is also not that favorable as my size 11 feet need slight better inclined pedals. Like in the new Honda City. My mum has that. And the pedal position and hardness is spot on for me there.

3. Blind Spots:
There is a big problem while turning the car to the right. There's a pretty big blind spot due to the A-pillar and the quarter glass. Has lead to some sticky situations.

4. The stock Wheels setup:
Not suited to this car. Period.
Too much rocking of the car at any speed above 40 kmph on bumps or while changing lanes. Not confidence inspiring at all.
I did not feel comfortable going at any speeds above 70 kmph.

5. The Pin-type door locks:
Oh it is a pain to unlock the doors for a passenger. I wish there could have been switches next to the door open lever. They are behind my shoulder on the top, like in the Alto.

6. The dark plastic parts in the interior are a dust magnet. Not favorable in Delhi. But look good nonetheless!

Impressions After the Mods
1. With the new tyres, the Beat is a whole new car. The handling is so much better. And the steering has become harder. It really does give so much better feedback.
Earlier, I used to literally feel jittery while changing lanes at any speed above 50 kmph. And if there were any bumps while taking turns or changing lanes, the car used to hop & skip like the guy in Aladdin walking on the hot embers! Lets just say the guy is wearing fire proof footwear now! Lol.

Oh, and the breaks are so much better now! I'm loving it.

2. The K&N has really given the car a strong character. There's the whistle and rasp of the filter that I really like. And then the slight increase in power.
Overtaking is so much more fun now! Can't wait to go the FFE way now!

3. The ICE just makes my two km journey each side from home to Office so much more entertaining now. Lol. I do get to drive a little more than those four kms everyday. At times I even do five.

4. The nights are when the car really comes alive with all the lights. I like my cars with a bit of tasteful bling. Heh Heh.

Now I am tired of waiting to see my car's pics here! So here goes..

Starting with the entry pic:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-entry-trex-cheetah.jpg

T-Rex from the back:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-back-side.jpg
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-rear-right.jpg

A close up of the wheel:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-wheel.jpg

The front parking lamps:
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-front-parking-light.jpg

Zoom-In of the Front parking lamps
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-front-parking-zoom.jpg

Front side with parking lamps and with DRLs ON (DRLs are connected such that they switch on with the engine)
The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more-front-parking-drls.jpg

The above pics have been taken right after giving the T-Rex a bath. And the quality of the pics is poor because of my iPhone camera, and the lack of skills on my part.
I have been waiting since long to put up the pics so I did what was possible.
Now I must call out to the T-Bhpians in Delhi to help me with the pics .

The travels of the T-Rex will continue with some interior shots later.

Thanks and do keep the comments flowing.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam

Last edited by samarth.bhatia : 12th April 2012 at 14:51.
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Old 11th April 2012, 14:02   #6
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Default re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Some more information:

1. The Mileage:
I have observed a dip of about 2 kmpl since the new wheels and tires have been installed. Currently I am getting a mileage of about 11.5 kmpl with AC on in city conditions.
I hope this number increases when I take it out on the highways.

2. The LEDs visible near the fog lamp position were changed from cheaper and less bright ones to more expensive, brighter, bigger LEDs. But the poor quality pictures seem to suggest that the brightness is the same!

3. The LED parking lights in the OEM parking light position in the head lamp units were initially the ultra cheap chinese ones. One of those got fused in about 2 weeks after installation!
So I decided to go in for original Philips LEDs there. These are again super bright and work really well.

4. Tried changing the gear knob from the OEM to a Sparco one. Couldn't make it happen as the OEM one is apparently non removable. Damn.
Even the guys at the Chevy Service were unable to suggest anything apart from replacing the entire lever arrangement below the know. Well kudos to Chevy for putting in such a strong system!
If any Chevy Beat owner can suggest anything to help remove the gear knob, please do.

5. The OEM parcel tray was put back in position after removing the stupid after market tray having the JBL speakers. Now the HERTZ speakers are in the OEM slots beside the grill.

6. There is a slight whine inside the cabin when the car is started. Also, when turning off the engine, the K&N emits a short whoosh sound.
Both these were not there on the K&N on my M800.
I could use some technical suggestions on the reasons and ways to sort this out.

Thanks.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam

PS: I shall put up the interior pics ASAP.
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Old 13th April 2012, 12:21   #7
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Default re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 13th April 2012, 12:37   #8
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol LS. LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Quote:
Originally Posted by samarth.bhatia View Post
Some more information:



4. Tried changing the gear knob from the OEM to a Sparco one. Couldn't make it happen as the OEM one is apparently non removable. Damn.
Even the guys at the Chevy Service were unable to suggest anything apart from replacing the entire lever arrangement below the know. Well kudos to Chevy for putting in such a strong system!
If any Chevy Beat owner can suggest anything to help remove the gear knob, please do.



PS: I shall put up the interior pics ASAP.

I think the beat's knob is similar to the fords, in as far as installation goes.

Youll be able to turn the knob around and around, but it still does not come off.

The knob will have a notch going around it, not visible, under the leather shroud, where it would be tied in by a snap-tie sort of mechanism.
What you got to do is remove the full piece of plastic where the Shroud joins it at the bottom
(See pic).

Its easy enough for the ford.

The hard part is getting a Knob with the damned notch.

(Picture Source: GTO's review here itself.)
Attached Images
 
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Old 13th April 2012, 12:41   #9
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Finally, your thread is back to the forum. With all the lighting you have done on your car. This Chevy will be in full glory at night, so please post pics with lights ON during nighttime. The locations you mentioned where LEDs have been placed will be best viewed at night with lights on.
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Old 13th April 2012, 12:50   #10
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Wow! Congrats on your well modded Beat. Have a great journey in this amazing little alien of a car!

I looked at your post in the TBHP Stickers section and was hoping you would put up an ownership thread. And I came to this section and realised that you had done just that.

Nice mods! Probably the first Beat I have seen to have some serious mods (both outside and inside). I would like to ask you some questions on what you have done since I own a Beat Petrol myself. Of course that will be along the way.

One thing I can agree 110% about is the need for wider tyres. I got 175 A-drives recently (didn't go beyond that for the sake of FE) and now its a completely different car. It needs more power though, which I suppose a K&N can help towards. Could you tell me about how much of a difference it has made?

Also would you mind sharing costs?

You should also get some interior lighting done especially LED sill plates, they look uber cool and gel well with the blue lighting.

One thing though, I am surprised you find the Beat seating position high. Most members and people I know complain about how low it is, especially for being a hatchback.
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Old 13th April 2012, 15:59   #11
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Smile Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Quote:
Originally Posted by mayankk View Post

The knob will have a notch going around it, not visible, under the leather shroud, where it would be tied in by a snap-tie sort of mechanism.

Yes, the guys at Driven were able to open the leather cover thingy and get to that notch. Neither did the notch move (rotate) nor did the gear knob. Please suggest what can be done, if possible.
Thanks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HorsPwr View Post
This Chevy will be in full glory at night, so please post pics with lights ON during nighttime.

Night time pics coming up soon bro. Stay tuned.
Thanks for the support.

Quote:
Originally Posted by superutp View Post

It needs more power though, which I suppose a K&N can help towards. Could you tell me about how much of a difference it has made?

The K&N Conical Air Flow has been able to increase the power at around mid to high RPMs. The power increase is good. But I hope to get it much better after a complete FFE.
The investment on K&N is definitely worth it, IMO.
Thanks for your comments.


You should also get some interior lighting done especially LED sill plates, they look uber cool and gel well with the blue lighting.
I've done some interior lighting, as I mentioned in my earlier posts. I will definitely put pics of that ASAP.
I've been interested in the lighted door sills. Haven't been able to source them yet, though.


One thing though, I am surprised you find the Beat seating position high. Most members and people I know complain about how low it is, especially for being a hatchback.
I agree with you. I have driven my friend's Ritz. And the seat position is much higher in that.
I just meant as compared to the Elantra and M800 which I used to drive earlier the seating is higher. Basically more comfortable and confidence inspiring.

Thank you for your comments. I hope that you have all enjoyed viewing the pictures.
If I can help in other way do let me know.
Do stay tuned for more.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam
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Old 13th April 2012, 16:21   #12
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Was there not something like this?
Name:  08476GWWEBREDO.jpg
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I read that chevys dont unscrew, but rather have to be pulled QUITE hard, while in reverse.
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Old 13th April 2012, 16:36   #13
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Smile Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Quote:
Originally Posted by mayankk View Post
Was there not something like this?
IS this the cable tie up thingy put on the notch to hold the cover up? Because something of that sort was there. It had to be cut open and then was replaced with a new one.

I read that chevys dont unscrew, but rather have to be pulled QUITE hard, while in reverse.
Thank you. Will try this out as well. But you said earlier that I might need the notch present on the new knob as well. That is unfortunately not the case with the Sparco knob I wanted to put. Will have to check though.
Thank you for your suggestions, mayankk.

My response in bold.

Cheers and drive safe.
Sam
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Old 15th April 2012, 20:51   #14
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

@samrath, that's a series of fantastic mods to your car!
its the K&N that interests me so much. your description of the 'snarl' and 'rasp' are
making me want to go and get one for my Beat right away!

Can you please share some under hood pics of the filter install?
also what is the conical filter model you've installed and how much did the whole install cost?
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Old 15th April 2012, 21:40   #15
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Default Re: The Story of My T-Rex - Chevy Beat Petrol. K&N, LEDs, Wheels, ICE & more

Note from Mod: There are several spelling & grammatical errors in your posts. This negatively affects the board experience for other readers.

Kindly ensure that you proof-read your posts prior to submission. Also, it would be a good idea to use spell-checkers.

Last edited by GTO : 17th April 2012 at 14:27.
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