June 15, 2008

That’s more like it!

Filed under: transportation — origamifreak @ 10:11 pm
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I bought my third tank of gas today. 338.5 miles, on 8.249 gallons = 41.03mpg

OK, maybe the Honda engineers HAVE been doing their job over the past 17 years, after all.

And that’s with the windows down most of the time, causing turbulence.

Take THAT, you gas-guzzling SUVs!

Heh, Heh.


June 9, 2008

Mileage report

Filed under: transportation — origamifreak @ 8:55 pm
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Well, I’ve finally got a mileage estimate on the Fit, since I’ve now put gas in it twice.

It went 316.8 miles on 8.76 gallons of fuel. That works out to 36.16 mpg. I’m a bit disappointed, since my Civic got 37.5 mpg, and hoping this is due to the fact that most of the driving the past 5 days has been with the air conditioner on.

I guess I could learn to enjoy sweating while driving, so that I can bump that mpg up where I want it. I’ll be tracking it at the EPA website, so I can compare with what other people say they’re getting:

There are data on 31 manual 2008 Fits, both base and sport. These owners claim anywhere from 27.6 to 42.1 mpg; the average is 34.6 mpg. 10 people are averaging more than I got (I’m in the 67th percentile). The person claiming >42 mpg is in TX and says they have 40%/60% city/highway miles.

To be fair to the new car, I should also mention this little tidbit from the EPA site: “New vehicles will not obtain their optimal fuel economy until the engine has broken in. This may take 3-5 thousand miles.” There are barely 600 miles on it, so far.

Also, I’m wondering how I’ve managed to drive an average of 63.36 miles per day, over the last 5 days? That seems kind-of high, somehow.


  • 6/4 drove to Geneva for work, plus a detour to water aerobics on the way home (49.7)
  • 6/5 drove to Geneva for work, plus a detour to water aerobics on the way home (49.7)
  • 6/6 drove up to Geneva for work, then home (28.6), then to Ithaca (36.2), then around downtown Ithaca (?), then up to Cornell (?), then back to downtown (?)
  • 6/7 drove around downtown Ithaca (?), up to Cornell (?), back down to downtown (?), then up to the mall (?), then back downtown (?), and then home to Romulus (36.2)
  • 6/8 no driving
  • 6/9 a trip to Farmington to the doctors office this morning before work (37.4), then to work (24.8 ) plus a detour to water aerobics after work (34.1)

296.7 mi is accounted for, which means I drove about 20 mi around Ithaca. I guess that’s about right. It just sounds like so much, when you add it all up!

I suppose I could investigate doing water aerobics in Geneva, so that my daily round trip will be closer to 30 mi, than 50! Yeesh.

May 29, 2008

A full weekend

Filed under: Uncategorized — origamifreak @ 5:47 am
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Wow, last weekend was really full, especially considering I didn’t actually go anywhere.

Saturday I bought a new car.

Sunday a bunch of friends came over and we had a BBQ down by the lake. I was too busy chatting and eating to document the event. Also, there isn’t running water down there, and so very quickly the activities of grilling and cooking and eating makes the fingers so sticky as to dissuade one from handling electronics/optics.

We had 10 adults, 3 kids, 2 Newfoundlands, and 1 Italian Greyhound. We were able to establish that the Italian Greyhound responds best when spoken to IN Italian, (especially if the speaker is plying the subject with bits of food).

Monday we fed crocodiles.

Last night I flew to DC for work (greetings from the Greenbelt Marriott), and will come home on Friday.

I will be glad to stay home, weed the garden, and fold laundry this coming Saturday, I think! I’ve got plenty of new This American Life podcasts to listen to, while doing it.

(One of the Sunday kids has a violin recital I want to go to this coming Sunday, so I plan to actually leave the house for that.)

May 24, 2008

Parade of Vehicles

Filed under: transportation — origamifreak @ 8:33 pm
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1988-1990 Eckbert (the license plate had letters EKB)

1979 AMC Spirit

paid $250, got $12 for scrap

This was my first car. Like all of them, it had a manual transmission, and like all of them, I paid cash. It had a gazillion miles on it, and this was the good side for pictures, because the other side had a dent where someone had T-boned it. When I got it the first thing I did was go scavenging at a junkyard, because it was missing all kinds of knobs and dials, and even the windshield washer reservoir and pump! The fact that the previous owner threw in a Chiltons Manual for free says something about what kind of condition it was in. I learned a lot, though, doing my own oil changes, and with a friend’s aid and timing gun even adjusted the timing belt. It had acres of empty space under the hood and a distributor cap and rotor.

It had rear-wheel drive and really loose power steering. I had it when I lived in CT. Whenever there was any kind of snow or ice, I was usually in the gutter within 5 minutes. I once had a very scarey freezing rain experience in it, and after that didn’t drive it much. By the time I got it towed for scrap, there was a small treeling trying to grow up through the bumper!

1991-2008 Horace Les Carage

1991 Honda Civic DX

paid $8500, got $100 for trade-in

This was my second car. I finally started needing to get around again, and the Spirit used too much gas and handled very poorly. I got this one after much agonizing – it was the biggest purchase I’d ever made, and the thought of spending that much, let alone being responsible for my Very Own New Car was daunting. It lived with me 3 places in CT, one in NV, and 3 in NY before retiring. It handled exceptionally well, laughed at snow and ice when wearing winter tires, gave me 2mpg better than the EPA estimates, and hauled all kinds of things, including kiddie swimming pools, large furniture, a plasma TV, and once even a 14-foot Sailfish boat – INSIDE. See previous post for more.

2008 – ? Yet to be christened

2008 Honda Fit Sport

paid $15905

This is my latest ride, as of this afternoon. It looks black except when the sun shines on it, when you can see the sparkly purple highlights. A bit low-rider aesthetically, but definitely better than the other option, bright royal blue. I was happy to find a place nearby that actually had one (let alone two) on the lot. Of all the new features, I think I might actually be most excited about the cup holders. Really. On the way back I stopped at Circuit City to pick up a cable to plug in my MP3 player, and bought a Vitamin Water. It was So Very Convenient to have somewhere to put it, besides wedging it between the parking brake and the passenger seat. 🙂

My system for paying cash, by the way, works like this:  I start a long-term, high-interest CD to which I contribute something like $100 per month, automatically.  By the time the car needs replacing, I have the cash to buy it.   Whatever is left over goes into the next CD. It’s like paying a loan, except I get the interest.

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