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About GCab

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    The Voice of Reason
  • Birthday 03/30/1967


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  1. I had an email today from West London Audi to say my car has completed production and is now at the port in Germany. I imagine they wait for a batch so it will be fairly unpredictable how long it takes to get here, but does anyone have a rough idea? The dealer is sticking to original date of end July/early August to avoid disappointment, but it's come off the line pretty quickly compared to estimate, so does anyone have a less conservative guesstimate/past experience? Ta
  2. Hi folks. This thread is timely... I´ve just (today) made the commitment to go from manual to S-tronic (order in this afternoon for Daytona Grey 3.0 TDI S-line cab, trading in my 2006 A4 3.0 TDI cab which is *so* old that the A4 and A5 forums were actually alive when I bought it and you could still discuss cars in them... TSN has obviously moved on since then :zzzz:). Nice to see some familiar faces here at least. Anyway, my current car was in for a bit of work and I had an S-tronic loaner for a weekend which convinced me it was time to move... responsive when playing around, but also (with, dare I say it, the adaptive cruise control) very relaxing for the long glide to the Lakes that we do at least once a month from the big smoke. So now it´s the long wait till late June/early July (week 22 build). FWIW from my 72 hours loan car experience, as an auto newbie I didn´t bother going from D to N, lights or no lights, and the start/stop worked fine; but the paddles got some use :-)
  3. Photo editing softwear

    Doesn't Flickr give you access to Picnik, or a similar online editor? Works reasonably well, is free, and works off the shelf on any computer you're on, I think. And Flickr itself is good for sharing the results with family and friends, once you've worked out the odd Photostream way of organising. I bought Lightroom 3 in a flush of enthusiasm but, er, haven't taken the wrapper off the box yet. Maybe I'll, um, just go do that
  4. Flying with EasyJet - tips?

    True up to a point (no real point being at the front just for the stress)... but equally, it's worth having 10 min less in the lounge, to not be squashed at the back for 4 hours next to the loos with the world's fattest bloke next to you and the 2nd fattest in front of you insisting on tipping his seat all the way back. I like to choose where I sit.
  5. Flying with EasyJet - tips?

    Mm, yes. That's a good comment re. passengers as much as airline. However the way they organise the speedy boarding bit leaves a lot to be desired - it's more or less designed to cause fights (e.g. in one case the SB queue is on the inside of a bend in the main queue, and they never bother to announce where it is or that they are asking those passengers to come through, so you end up with everyone thinking you're pushing through them for no reason, when in fact you're trying to get to the service you paid for). All they have to do is organise it better and then it would work. There are apocryphal stories of people paying for it, queueing at the front, and then getting on the same bus to the plane as everyone else ... EJ aren't that bad otherwise (I'd never fly RyanAir in a million years). Still, I'd only ever go there if there was no alternative - I'm still a BA loyalist despite everything. My M-i-L has moved out to Spain in a place which is only accessible from Alicante, which is basically full of people who are either on EasyJet or for whom EasyJet is too classy. The chance of me ever going to see her has dropped by about 800%.
  6. Thanks for all the preceding advice, anyway . May still need it.
  7. You're not cheering me up . I know it's not guaranteed, but I'm going to allow myself to go with the "M6 gantry cameras only activate/are legally valid during variable speed limit" theory. The former doesn't explain the flash and no ticket; but if it's true that it needed a rewrite of the law to allow the M1 ganty cameras to be used at the national speed limit (and this didn't apply retrospectivley to the M6 ones), then it might make sense. Ho hum. Or, I'll just get a nasty surprise in two months.
  8. Is it too early to uncrossed fingers? Been two weeks and two days now (flash was on a Sunday night, and nothing in post today).
  9. DRL wannabes......foglights to manual

    Let's face it, MM, this is just a fashion statement, no different to the girlies on their Mumsnet/fashion-police forums going "oh, calf-length skirts and brown gussets {or whatever} are *so* last year". It has feck all to do with blinding, safety, or actually cars at all. Admit it.
  10. DRL wannabes......foglights to manual

    I find this whole discussion a bit weird. Foglights in the 1970s low-slung rally car sense may have been blinding, but the front ones these days have never struck me as any brighter than (non-full beam) headlights. The sound and fury about them from people who don't like the idea of them is all very well, but is nothing more than a fashion statement. Anyone who claims to find them genuinely blinding is exaggerating a bit, methinks. They're far less bright and piercing than xenons, which don't seem to arouse anything like the same venom here - why? Rear foglights are more penetrating, yes; but when someone drives toward me with front foglights on in a modern car I barely notice. What annoys me much more, are the muppets who use *inadequate* lighting - half-beam on a grey day or even rain on a dark winter afternoon (what the hell do they think they're doing - preserving their battery?) - dipped lights simply vanish on a low-contrast day. Given that as an alternative, I'd much rather everyone drove around with headlights and foglights on all the time, tbh.
  11. Oh dear: >> Periodicals are not available on Kindle for iPhone at this time
  12. Which newspapers? This is an attraction, together with screen size vs. iPhone version unless I decide to go for an iPad at some point (the backlighting doesn't bother me as such). Would it do the Times, if you did the paywall bit, and do you pay subscription to Amazon for the other papers anyway?
  13. Thanks for advice, links, (and hopefulness) guys. Lots of useful stuff there, and the incident is a reminder not to get complacent - I used to be a bit fast 10-15 years ago and am not always sedate now, but one thing this has made me realise is that alhough I used to go back and forth on motorways quite a lot, I'd have always regarded >85, >90 (and especially >95) as silly, before spending 4-5 hours at a time on the M6 twice a month, but once I'd begun doing that I'd let my 'norm' drift upwards (in good conditions) ... so it's lucky in a way to get a camera flash (and probable consequences, though I could do without those) to remind me to dial it down again, rather than anything worse.
  14. Caught doing 55 in 30-zone....

    Came to this thread having looked into stuff as a result of being flashed (with a lot less excuse) last night - thansk Andrew for the link - but the medical bit also caught my eye. Of course I understand the actions one might take in such a situation, especially if you're wondering how long it will take the ambulance to get to you in the first place. However; just for general education (not to preach one choice of action vs. another) there are some changes afoot you should be aware of. Firstly, ambulances are prioritised and under new systems one could be with you in 7 minutes, depending on condition. Also, some crews are trained to do a lot more than just drive, so medical help could be with you (e.g. to secure an airway) a lot sooner than it takes you to get to hospital. Also, there are other new systems which mean the ambulance 'calls in' to hospital electronically so the A&E know what to expect and what's incoming and can assemble the right team. Just turning up at the front door may not be as efficient. However, of course you need to make your own judgement at the time and nobody could blame you, but it's just worth knowing what's out there now. Secondly, hospitals are changing and the ambulances may be more aware of this. Some hospitals close together have moved all their paediatrics, for example, to one site. An ambulance will know which to go to; a parent hurtling through the door of the wrong one carrying a sick child may then face further delay while people without the right skills or kit faff about and argue about whether to try and treat or to move the child. Places that have done this will generally have gone to great lengths to inform local population, schools, etc., but just something to be aware of. None of this may apply to you, but for anyone reading, it's just worth remembering that "drive-ins" are not always as good as an ambulance call. But every situation is different. There are more expert A&E types than me on this forum, so this is just my view. Anyway very glad she got better
  15. Hmm... had all points long expired, but I suspect looking at court now - I came off the M6 toll last night a mite too fast, having got complacent on a dry empty road (and after semi-commuting to and from Lakes every month for 3 years). I follow the variable limits when in force and it's usually busy anyway, but this time everything was empty, and (clearly) may have been on the wrong side of things on the toll road to start with, and was just coming up to the merging point but with not much traffic anywhere. There were about 3 of us moving loosely at similar speed but I was in front by a nose so it will have been me that triggered it. Sudden double flash from gantry. As far as I can recall there were no VSL numbers up (and wouldn't expect any - Sunday 9ish pm?), but I'm pretty sure the needle had gone above on the wrong side of the fixed penalty vs. court figure, although less than 105. How do I know the latter? Well, I usually have the Audi speed alarm at 95 permanently, in case of forgetfulness/enthusiasm like now rather than because I always cruise there, but I'd been showing it to someone a few weeks ago and clicked it up by 10 and forgot to put it back. I had a few points (max 6) years ago but since getting more sedate I haven't bothered with Road Angel type things since changing car 4 yrs ago. All my own fault of course and I've never been one for "when was that camera last calibrated, Officer?" type shenanigans, so it'll be the suit and apologetic appearance in court if it comes to it (I'm pretty sure it will be the latter), so I'm not looking for tips on how to get off or which lawyer to get. Couple of practical tips, though: 1. I've read that the M42 cameras are set for variable limit activation only, and do not enforce 70mph when the signs are off. I've also read (random forum searching elsewhere, las night) rumours that they are set to go off above 93 or 95 in any case. I've also read, countering this, that the law for the M42 ones is that fixed-site cameras can't be used to enforce the national speed limit on motorways, but that this was changed for the new M1 cameras. Is this all rubbish? In any case, having seen the flash, I assume this is a moot point and they will have registered? 2. I also assume (now that things are digital) that flash = NIP, since there's no point hoping that the film had run out etc like in the old days - correct? (my previous points were in 1995, 97 etc., and I had a few escapes after being flashed around then, but it was a long time ago...). 3. In terms of what might follow: looking at older posts here, the pattern seems to be (for, say, 95-105 - not that I'm saying that was my speed, but looking at worst case scenarios) something like £250-400, six points, +/- if the judge is unmoved by work commitments then 25 days/3-4 weeks ban? I do actually need the car for emergency calls to work and don't know what the solution will be (I know, I know, "you should have thought of that before you..." etc. etc.) but I don't want to bank on them taking that into account. Advice / info please! Many thanks. I do appreciate all the stuff about taking the train there, looking smart, being properly remorseful, etc., and as I say that's sort of my default mode anyway, in that I've always thought I could never have the face to pull off the aggrieved off-on-a-technicality thing. Plus I was going too fast and intend to declare so. But any thoughts welcome.