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Old 03-03-2016, 08:21 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'm sure you'll find lots of great tips and tricks here. The most important thing is that you're searching and informing yourself.
I too am a big fan of MMM and his "teachings". Also want to retire early and travel / enjoy life, rather than slaving away 'til I'm an old fart

Originally Posted by Gouldness View Post
A 99 Carolla, 5 spd. Drove the **** out of it, even inadvertantly through Deals gap, just about burnt the clutch doing that. Not long after the transmission went, great way to spend a grand, sold it for 800. ...
What do you mean there...through Deals gap just about burnt the clutch doing that?
I'm on my first manual transmission car (since Oct 2015) and I am worried I might have done some damage to the clutch while learning.

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Last edited by Andrei_ierdnA; 03-03-2016 at 09:20 PM..
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Old 03-03-2016, 09:01 PM   #12 (permalink)
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The gas I burnt up in 3 weeks and 3k miles in my 67 Barracuda 383 Formula S would get me a year in my Mirage. 16k miles in 16 weeks on 1600 gallons at $.0329 a gallon.

That was 1972.

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Old 03-04-2016, 08:55 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Andrei_ierdnA View Post

What do you mean there...through Deals gap just about burnt the clutch doing that?
I'm on my first manual transmission car (since Oct 2015) and I am worried I might have done some damage to the clutch while learning.
Deals Gap is a passage through part of the Appalachian range here in East Tennessee, the road through is incredibly curvy, experiences many elevation changes and is the site of seemingly endless motorcycle wrecks whenever there's nice weather. It is a serious workout for any car, and if you don't have a lot of torque under the hood you will be shifting a LOT to keep the power going.

It is a storied road, even internationally, known as The Tail of the Dragon. The Dragon eats clutches.


Spirited motoring enthusiasts come from all over the world to ride the Dragon, usually to their regret when they discover that the speed limits on the Dragon are generally modest and it is vigorously patrolled by (usually frustrated) local law enforcement. That doesn't prevent people laying the hammer down, however, and occasionally getting in deeper than they can handle.


Lead or follow. Either is fine.
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Old 03-04-2016, 03:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Out of curiosity, how did you find us? IE. what led you here?
A friend, who's a member of this site told me about it, surprised me as i would have thought i'd have stumbled across it before now on the interwebz.

Can't wait to get a paid off "beater" to mod myself.
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Old 03-04-2016, 04:14 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Deals Gap/Tail of the Dragon
318 Turns in 11 miles, wow.
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Old 03-05-2016, 01:52 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I'll trade you my '05 Prius with 120k miles for your Volt.

A manual gen1 Insight can't be touched on the highway; it'll easily beat a Prius by a good 10-15MPG at any given speed. City mileage is all up to you, but it should still beat a Prius given similar driving styles. Being able to still drive it with a dead/dying battery is also a plus (Prius is big metal brick with a dead HV battery). Both are great cars, though.

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Old 03-06-2016, 12:56 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Good job wanting to get and stay out of debt!

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Old 03-06-2016, 02:58 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Wow, your car history sounds a lot like mine (1974 Pontiac Grandville=>1995 Tercel=>1991 Toyota Hilux=>2002 Viper=>2005 Ram SRT-10=>2005 Honda Civic=>2013 Prius). Now, I look back at all the money I wasted on fuel (I drove the Viper cross-country multiple times) and laugh.

How much space do you need in the car? If I didn't regularly haul bikes to races and want something I can car camp in on long roadtrips, I probably would have gone with a 1st-gen Insight in retrospect. The Prius is a lot more flexible when it comes to hauling stuff, and the rate of battery failure is very low. If you don't mind having a funny-looking car, aeromodded Civics of pretty much any generation can return 50+mpg as well, depending on your driving.
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Old 03-06-2016, 03:05 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Must confess that it does surprise me you're considering to replace the Volt with a Prius. Apart from the financial motivation, is there any other reason behind that move?
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:42 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Manual transmission Civic Hybrid and 1st Gen Insight fit the bill, but as others have said, have early battery failures.

I just picked up a clean, low miles 2004 Civic hybrid for 3 grand, and with winter tires on, I'm getting 60-70mpg cruising at 50mph on wet roads, which is probably better than you can expect with a Prius. The engines on the Insight and Civic will last virtually forever, so high miles shouldn't be a deterrent, and the manual transmissions have some quirks but are pretty solid. Both cars will still run with a failed hybrid battery, but as it gets weak and starts to fail, you will lose electric assist and the car becomes a lot less fun to drive.

Insights had a 10 year warranty on their hybrid battery, so most of them from the south (where heat causes early battery demise) will have batteries that are 0-6 years old. These cars are really solid highway cruisers that you can expect to reliably run without much maintenance for hundreds of thousands of miles.

When the battery does fail, a battery replacement or refurbishment isn't too expensive in these cars, and you might be able to pick one up for a song with a failed battery and drop a new one in it, and get 10+ years of use from the battery if you take care of it. Many choose to keep driving them without the hybrid functions, though.

Honestly, if my budget allowed for it, I probably would have picked up a 2nd-gen Prius over the Honda Civic Hybrid 1, but I know how to keep the batteries on these going, and it was significantly cheaper than a Prius with a similar number of miles on the clock.

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