Friday, 19 June 2009

Friday 19/06/09

Moving the caravan was not such a good idea as far as Perry is concerned. He wants us to install a snack van with seating (plus obligatory Union flag) at the halfway point from the house.

The lambs in the field have been haring around chasing each other. They’re obviously honing their hunting skills.

Starting to regret having bought this replacement car. It was sold to me as an ex T5 that had had the engine replaced with a standard 2.3L lump following a turbo blow-out – with the consequence that the engine had done about 100k miles less than the number on the odometer.

Having checked the VIN and engine numbers, it transpires it has a 2.0L engine, and always has since day 1 – it was never a T5, despite the T5 decal on the tailgate. Seems the nice young couple who sold it to me were telling porkies. I’m not that upset (caveat emptor), as I do have a car with a gas conversion which will be cheap to run; however, I may now tart my old car up, sell both and get what I really want, which is a low-mileage Volvo TDi.

Filled the car’s LPG tank yesterday and felt such a fool. I’d had a go the day before, but the delivery pump didn’t put any in the tank and I put it down to the pump either not being at full pressure or empty. After yesterday’s attempt I discovered I was pressing the wrong button on the pump; I was pressing the emergency cut-off – but how the hell was I to know when there were no labels and the pump attendants don’t how to operate the pumps either. Added to that I managed to give my left hand a good dose of freezing LPG from a blow-back, nearly ending up with a block of frozen meat instead of a left hand.

Staring to learn a lot more about LPG fueled cars.

  • Due to LPG being less thermally efficient than petrol you use more of it, but the fact that LPG is much cheaper results in an overall 40% cost saving.
  • LPG filling stations are as ubiquitous as unicorn poo and it’s a good idea to locate LPG outlets before you set off on a long journey. I use a couple of websites ( and and have programmed them into my mobile phone as bookmarks for emergencies. Outlets tend to hunt in packs so that you get small competitive clusters within built-up areas but few (if any) in more rural locations.
  • Ensure you maintain your petrol tank at half full, just in case you can’t find an LPG outlet. Converted cars have to start up on petrol anyway, switching to LPG once warm (the LPG is warmed by the engine before being injected).
  • Don’t put your paws anywhere near the filler – you may end up shattering your hand like glass if it freezes due to a blow-back on disconnection.

I haven’t yet figured out what the MPG figure on the car’s computer actually refers to when driving on gas. I guess it’s still reading as if the gas were petrol – it merely being priced differently per gallon. Theoretically it should read a higher fuel consumption when switching to gas, as it’s less efficient, but I have yet to do a long journey on which I can test the theory – although I am off to Cornwall to see my boys at the weekend.

If, like me, you are an advocate of drug decriminalization, have a read about an experiment that has been conducted in Portugal over the last 8 years.


  1. You're a proper bloke arent' you. I wish my husband knew that much about cars!

    Good detailed post xxxx

  2. Janny: I thought there might be too much bloke-speak for the majority of my readers to comprehend.

  3. sheep -- hunting skills LOL!

  4. I'm now slightly concerned about dropping off a tajine in the next week or so after reading todays post. I've heard about country dwellers raising killer sheep, bred to attack unsuspecting motorcyclists!

    Where did I put my very old, VERY padded leggings?

    Enjoy your time with the kids.

  5. Don't know about killer sheep but looks like the Spiv may have to walk through swathes of opium poppies to get to the caravan.....

  6. The Portugal thing might be more convincing if they hadn't all been stoned when they did it....