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Old 07-11-2009, 12:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Huge commute expected

Hello all,

My background is process improvement through Lean and 6Sigma. My thing is plastic extrusion and web handling. I have been trying to squeeze every drop out of whatever car I have driven. Now I drive a beater 94 Geo Prizm with 190K miles and just found out that I might have a new job that is 100 miles away and no relocation. The car is the 1.6L with a 5-speed, A/C, and power steering. So far my mix driving of 75% highway/25% city has yielded an avg of 38mpg. My max has been 42mpg in a fully loaded car + luggage with 100% highway.

I hope to pull some knowledge from these pages to reduce the expense of the commute and then move to a real fuel saver like a VW TDI or a Geo Metro. Just failed inspection today and will be patching up a rust hole with a friend in the morning.

I think I will be adding hub caps, adding simple aero improvements, remove the power steering, switching to 175/70/14" tires, changing to LED lighting, and maybe go with lower springs (might not work with the slightly taller tires). Goal is 45mpg average and not get run over in Boston I-495 traffic.

Neal

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Old 07-11-2009, 12:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi and welcome! Congrats on the hopeful new job!

My almost 60 mile round trip doesn't sound so bad now
You're gonna have lots of time to practice good driving habits, but an awful long day till you get back home

Good luck on reaching your goal, I'm sure if you use the knowledge around here you'll make it, no problem....
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Old 07-11-2009, 01:05 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Time to Basjoos it - you will need to be going fast if you have a 200 mile commute!
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Old 07-11-2009, 08:47 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Welcome to the site. That is quite the commute! As the others have said, aeromod that sucker.
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Old 07-11-2009, 10:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Whereabouts in New Hampshire are you?

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Old 07-11-2009, 10:53 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Faird -

Wave as you go by on 495 as I live in N. Andover, MA and watch the cars go past my house on their way to gridlock every day. I feel your pain driving on 495 as it is my closest route into the Hub and I've never driven it without a traffic jam...every time at all times of the day...brutal. Not to mention the heavy traffic is about 90 miles into your commute on your way to work.

Good luck with your new job and vehicle mods...I'll be looking for your super-modded Geo on 495!
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Old 07-11-2009, 11:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Living in Rottenchester, NH. Looking to relocate to Seabrook, Nashua, N. Andover in the future. I fear MA taxes. Bummer about the traffic jams. That could be an issue.
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Old 07-12-2009, 12:01 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Have you thought about trying 95 straight down to 93 instead of 495 off of 95? Maybe you have timed both routes already but it might be worth trying both to save time and money. Google maps reports 3 less miles from Rochester, NH to Boston on 95 to 93 than on 495 from 95. Not sure where in Boston you are going so the 3 less miles on 95/93 might be farther away than going 495.
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Old 07-12-2009, 02:43 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Actually going out to Worcester, MA. Update: Failed inspection on Friday! Rust of all things. I have put some work into my trusty lil turd and got blind sided on the last day. Never fear, my friend jumped in and did not charge me for the Franken-patch. The spray paint even matched some of the better painted areas that are left. The mud flaps are gone and I have been toying with aero mods that I could live with. I know I am a nerd deep down but only my wife and kids are in on it LOL!!!! Hub caps are in. Partial grill block is coming up also. Under body tray looks bigger than I for the moment. I could live with smaller mirrors but have ruled out a mirror delete. My car can't take 13" rims so I am stuck with going from 185/65 14" to 175/70 14". I saw a lot or chin improvement that should be done. Has anyone found benefit in removing the power steering? Oh, tried pulsing my mother's Honda CRV and beat her highway average of 26 with 28 and mixed, hilly driving. I was already doing it but not like you pros are doing it.

Wing good or bad?
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Old 07-13-2009, 05:10 PM   #10 (permalink)
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