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PhotoAl last won the day on December 30 2018

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  1. For oil changes I bought a pair of Rino Ramps - Amazon I think. They work very well, can drive up on them without much effort, miss all of the plastic in front and have descent stops so I don't drive over them. They stack together somewhat for storing so take up less space. With the extra few inches the oil change is easy. I can get to all of the screws to loosen the under tray. It is the best one I have encountered. It stays in place even when the screws and two clips are removed but is easy to slide back and drop. Doesn't weigh much. Oil filter is easy to get to and is a spin on so easy enough to remove. Drian plug is also easy to get to. Only issue was pouring the oil in - had to dig out the small funnel I used on my motorcycles. I have a garage but in front of the TC is a metal lathe from the late 1800's so not much room. On the floor I put some of the square floor cushions I got at Costco. They make it easy to lay on the floor. I'm very happy with the engine bay on this car. My son had a VW Jetta with the turbo motor, very difficult to get to stuff in that engine bay.
  2. Interesting how Ford and GM are abandoning the car market. Last week I drove over to Atlanta. Left downtown at 4:50PM - right into the heart of rush hour. What did I see? An interstate filled with SUVs? No, it was cars everywhere with some SUV mixed in. I think they have just given up on the car market because it is too difficult for them to compete with the Japanese and Korean cars. Certainly lots of SUVs are being sold but when you go into a Chevy dealership, what kind of cars do they have? Not much that interests me, Ford had a good car in the Focus but didn't stay on top of the market and keep it updated with current trends. If you look at the Honda Civic Sport it is very similar to the Ford Focus ST, the Honda Clarion is very similar to the Chevy Volt. I put the blame on poor leadership. Both Ford and GM have plenty of talented engineers and designers but WAY too many accountants and a lack of leadership with a vision. OK that's my rant for today.
  3. PhotoAl

    Transit connect reverse gear problem

    My first thought is that reverse is a non synchromesh gear. Ive had transmissions in the hazy distant past that would act like that. Second thought is that the clutch may not have enough freeplay and is actually transmitting a bit of power or spinning the transmission a bit even with the clutch peddle depressed all the way. I'm not sure you don't have transmission issues. Many years ago I had a 1985 Merkur XR4Ti which destroyed its transmission. If I recall one of the symptoms was difficulty engaging reverse. Or may have been the Fiesta (1978) that had a bearing go bad which caused play in the shaft. I got lucky on the Fiesta, it had a magnetic drain plug which collected the metal and all it needed was a replacement bearing. When the XR4Ti was right it was very quick for it's time.
  4. I agree about the Nissan vans but I do see a fair number of them around.
  5. PhotoAl

    Performance Chip

    I think the real solution is to put the engine, transmission and computer from a Focus ST. Now that would make a difference. Could be done for about the price of a nice used TC though. Was down at APR last week - they are a VW/Audi tuner - and looked at a VW 2.0 turbo that could be had for about $15K (Im talking about the engine+turbo+intercooler). It made lots of HP :-) As for the TC I love mine but do occasionally wish for more. Don't know why Ford doesn't make a go fast version. A TC with the engine and brakes from the ST along with a bit of firming on the suspension would make a nice sport van.
  6. I see a fair number of the Rams and Nissan NV200 and even the Chevy City Express but not so many Mercedes. I have the Titanium level TC and while not plush its not so bad on the inside. The seats aren't great but are not that bad. Ive always avoided leather and this is only my second vehicle with leather. The first being a Mercedes 190E that couldn't drive by a repair shop without stopping in for a visit. My TC is not powerful but does OK, drove over to Atlanta last Wednesday to IKEA. Bought some cabinets loaded up and left downtown at 5PM! Yes that's right into the teeth of rush hour. The TC did fine, it doesn't have an overabundance of torque so have to be heads up on low speed stop and go in heavy darting traffic but it does carve thru traffic nicely. To me it feels bigger than it is but it turns and moves like a much smaller vehicle. My daughter had a Honda Odyssey which is much more ponderous. I don't miss stuff like the lane guidance, blind spot detection etc. I do really like the backup sensors and camera. The rain sensing wipers are really nice. As for noise it is not bad, It does make a difference how the back of the van is configured. With seats up it is quite than with seats down. It will cruse with the flow of traffic on the interstates here in the south - which sometimes is well above the posted limits. Something I like about it is the fact it drives and corners like a car but with an elevated seating position. No it's not going to win lots of drag races but if you need to accelerate it does it well enough. Something that is really nice about it is the low floor height combined with the tall roof. You can put stuff inside that wouldn't fit in an ordinary van. The seat heights are such that most people can sit in them without effort, they are not high or low. My 90 YO mother-in-law loves to ride in it as it's easy to get in and out. I took her somewhere in the Volt and it is much more difficult for her to get out of as it is lower.
  7. Congrats on your TC, it does drive very nicely. Glad you got the license plat screws out, on one of mine I actually pulled the nut part out of the body. I then had a hole in the rear door of my brand new TC!!!! They have metric threaded bolt holes which are an insert into the sheet metal and then crimped from the back side. I couldn't figure out how to easily put a replacement in (part is very expensive for what it is) so I went with a license plate frame and sed two other bolt holes - carefully checking to make sure what size bolt was needed. Got bolts at Home Depot and also cut down the license plate mounting bolts for the new frame to make sure they didn't go thru the new frame and rub against the paint. 2 hours of my time to fix something that would have taken a few minutes for the dealer to do correctly.
  8. I have 4 kids but the youngest is 28 and she complains whenever she rides with me so I mostly leave her behind :-) I have twin 5 YO grandkids and haul them a lot. The seats go in the middle and third row without too much trouble. Mine is a 2016 Titanium with the 6 passenger configuration. The seats are not the most comfortable but work OK, today I made a 300 mile trip without issues. For most people the seat height is such that they can sit without going up or down. Putting the kids in the seats is easy and they can climb in w/o any trouble. The twins like riding in the 3rd row and it not difficult buckling them in if the middle seats are folded. My inlays are 90 and recently father-in-law couldn't walk. We took him to the doctor. It was relatively easy to get him into the front seat with my mother-in-law behind him along with their helper. My wife got a 3rd row seat as she is 5' tall and quite limber. It doesn't ride as nicely as my daughter's Honda Oddessy but handles much better. It can go around turns very quickly without much body roll. Much more car like in that respect. Sometimes I fold the rear seats down and carry stuff and still can haul 4 people. Other times I will remove the rear seats, fold the middle seats and put one of my scooters in the back. What I love is the versatility and with the high roofline it is much easier to get around inside than my daughter's Honda. As for power it isn't powerful but it will go if you keep you foot on the floor. No you wont win a lot of drag races but its OK. For those who think it is slow I offer my Honda Metropolitan scooter. A couple of days with it and the TC looks like a rocket! I haven't had any issues with it being low but I'm careful what I drive over.
  9. My son's VW turbo made it 75,000 miles before it needed a major service - engine, clutch flywheel left driveshaft and that doesn't include the small stuff like fluids etc. On the other hand I guess I need to open the hood on my Volt and check the washer fluid, it has 60,000 miles on it and may be due for the 4th oil change in a year or so. I agree about buying used and usually do but the last 2 vehicles I've bought have been new. Bought the Volt late in 2013, deep discount, + $7,500 tax credit + over $5,000 from wife in GM credit that she would let me spend on a Corvette. OTD was about $21,000, could get anything near a nice in a used low mileage car plus operating costs have been cheap. Bought the 2016 TC new in late November 2017. Got lots off and it was only about $3 or $4 thousand more than a nice used 2016 with 15,000 miles on it. I have those 15,000 miles and an additional year of warranty. IMO when its that close then I will buy new. When looking at used TC's it seems the prices don't vary much wether its a 14, 15 or 16 and sometimes the mileage doesn't appear to affect the price that much. My son recently bought a Focus ST (hum, wonder if I could swap the wheels and tires with my TC?) again the interesting thing was the used prices were not that much lower than the discounted new prices.
  10. WOW that's a lot! Sorry to hear about your major surgery, may you heal quickly and well. When I shattered my kneecap and had to ride thru the stores in the mobility scooters it was not fun!
  11. Changed the oil in my 2016 yesterday and noticed some oil in the same spot. Looked like it was coming thru the threaded hole which I think is a weep hole. Maybe from rear main seal? Not sure but will keep an eye on it. Bought my '16 new in late November 2017 and it has a little less than 13,000 miles on it. I changed the oil between 5 and 6 thousand miles but didn't reset the oil service reminder. It went on at 10,200 miles. I did reset it after this oil change - no I'm not going to wait until it goes on to change the oil next time. :-) Oil on top of the engine may be from cam (valve) cover gasket leaking, sometimes the bolts on the cam cover are loose and all that is needed is a tightening of the bolts. Ive had that happen a couple of times on VW's. Doesn't look too difficult to change if needed.
  12. Totally agree herb. My daughter has an Odyssey and it is nicer than my TC. But I didn't want an Odyssey I wanted a van that I could haul stuff like my scooter or motorcycle or bicycle or an appliance or whatever. Only advantage the Odyssey has is it can hold a longer box than my TC. For taller cargo the TC wins hands down. It is a great van that can haul people, some cargo and has wonderful headroom. With mine I have hauled a scooter one day, the next day hauled my two 5 year old grandkids and then hauled something like a dishwasher. IMO the car reviewers only want lots of seats in a big SUV, lots of HP in a car like a Corvette or Porsche. Maybe I'm just more cynical in my old age but the media reviewers seem to spend very little time actually learning about the products they are reviewing and more time drinking coffee in Starbucks while surfing the web. As for Ford, I think they have a major case of brain fade - the accountants must be running the company again! It fine to have the 2.0 in the 2019 as long as they have another engine choice. The 2.0 turbo that makes 250HP would be a wonderful addition to the van and could totally transform its character. Don't see how the gas mileage could get worse. It handles very nicely, Ive had more fun thru the corners with it than a van should be capable of. The Odyssey is not a fun vehicle in the corners but the TC with it low stance and firm suspension handles pretty well.
  13. PhotoAl

    OEM tires and wheelspin

    I'm very careful taking off from a stop but it is way too easy for my 2016 LWB to spin the front tires (OEM). I agree the throttle is quite touchy from a stop which makes it hard to start smoothly. Exactly the opposite of my Volt which makes it interesting when switching from one to the other.
  14. LOL, agree that is a bad day for the salesperson but they need to get it right. Depending on the problem I would not automatically write it off but certainly a bad sign. My son looked at a Ford Focus ST which had a check engine light on and it was at the Ford dealership. Car had some mods on it, price was way to high in my opinion. For about the same price he bought a new one two days ago - at a different dealership. Kind of like a shrunken flattened Transit Connect with some real horsepower. Cabin is very familiar as to be expected and I finally get my car back :-)
  15. Sorry to hear that but better soon rather than later. Keep on looking, there are good one out there just takes patience - which is not done of my strengths.