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Old 01-12-2009, 03:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Hi all,
After lots of lurking, gleaning information, I finally registered.
I (well, we, since my wife and I only have one car) have a 2008 Honda Fit (base). Not the most aerodynamic car, but it gets pretty good mileage and can haul all kinds of stuff. The bad news is that I have a roof rack on it (which I remove for long highway trips) because I'm a cyclist and carry my bike on the car regularly. The good news is that I put more miles on my bike than I do the car. My wife doesn't have that option since we have an 8-month-old baby. But we try to drive as little as we can, and it looks like we'll be at about 8000 miles for the past year.

I'm interested in increasing my FE as much as possible without doing anything crazy, like a 10-foot boat tail on the back.

I don't have a lot of specialized knowledge, just a basic understanding of mechanics and aerodynamics.

It's great to see a community that's dedicated to this.

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Old 01-12-2009, 03:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome aboard! Good to see another Fitter, (or whatever your Fitters call yourselves)
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Old 01-12-2009, 04:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Welcome to the site. As a lurker you probably have already seen the links to the 100+ hypermiling / ecodriving tips to increase gas mileage - EcoModder.com, and 60+ Vehicle modifications for better fuel economy - EcoModder.com, but those are the best places to start. Did you have any initial modifications in mind? Also, what kind of mileage are you currently getting with the Fit?
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Old 01-14-2009, 11:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the welcome. I've browsed through the threads linked to above, but need to read them in more detail. I was getting about 32mpg combined in the Fit (and actually, my wife drives it a lot more than I do), but my wife has been out of town, so on the last tank, I've been trying pulse-glide driving, etc. and got about 36mpg. I'm considering taking off the roof rack for a tank or two to see how much I can improve it over that.
The modifications I might eventually make would probably be simple things, like a grille dam and wheel covers. Maybe I'll get more adventurous later. I'm mostly trying to change my driving habits and, maybe if there's a way to do it without being obnoxious and preachy, encourage my wife to change hers too. It seems a bit dumb to be making eco mods while I still have a roof rack, but the roof rack is a necessity for how much we carry bikes on the car and I feel it's justified since I save 32 miles of driving every day by commuting on my bike.
Anyway, thanks for the welcome.
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Old 01-14-2009, 11:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Is it a quick release and easy to mount rack? Most are these days. My cousin has one for his Volvo wagon so we can haul ladders for his painting business. They take about 30 seconds to install.
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Old 01-20-2009, 03:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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it's a thule rack with the aero feet. it takes about 5-10 minutes to install and remove. for longer trips, if i remember, i take it off. but i leave it on in general because it's kind of difficult to put on and the rack is most used if i meet my wife somewhere and need to put the bike on the roof. we have a baby and i don't want to make her have to deal with trying to put it on. unfortunately, the rack mounts with the crossbars, rather than with the ones that run parallel to the car. if it mounted with bars that run parallel to the car, I could just take off the crossbars to improve the aerodynamics.
thanks for the suggestions.
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nilloc View Post
I'm interested in increasing my FE as much as possible without doing anything crazy, like a 10-foot boat tail on the back.
OK, how about a 6 foot boat tail?

Seriously: how often do you drive with two bikes on the vehicle? You would be far better off with a hatch rack, if that's an option.
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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PS: I assume you're not doing too much biking recently.

And... do you have a ScanGauge or other instrumentation yet?
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Project MPGiata! Mods for getting 50+ MPG from a 1990 Miata
Honda mods: Ecomodding my $800 Honda Fit 5-speed beater
Mitsu mods: 70 MPG in my ecomodded, dirt cheap, 3-cylinder Mirage.
Ecodriving test: Manual vs. automatic transmission MPG showdown



EcoModder
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www.MetroMPG.com - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners
www.ForkenSwift.com - electric car conversion on a beer budget
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Old 01-21-2009, 07:45 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I have considered a hatch rack, prefer the solidness of the roof rack. I'm still thinking about it, though.

I actually am still biking. I have studded tires for winter biking and am still car-free for my commute to work, even in the recent sub-zero (Fahrenheit) weather here in Michigan.

And I don't have a ScanGauge yet, but am definitely interested in getting one once I free up some money for it.

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