Click & Clack Talk Cars
Tom and Ray Magliozzi
Dear Tom and Ray:
I have just leased a 2005
Toyota Sienna van. The outside width, including
the side mirrors, is 88 inches. The inside width
of my single-stall garage door is 93 inches. This
means I have to be a pretty good driver to get
the vehicle into and out of the garage. I can
rotate the mirrors toward the body of the vehicle
to gain more clearance, but then I cant see
when I am backing up. Do you have any suggestions
that would help guide me with the mirrors in the
driving position? - David
TOM: Youve probably
noticed, David, that minivans are not so
"mini" anymore. Theyve been
getting longer and wider with each successive
generation ... to the point where a Toyota Sienna
is now nearly as wide as a Ford Expedition!
RAY: And youve obviously
noticed, as well, that garage doors are not
expanding at nearly the same rate.
TOM: Heres what I would
do. You would certainly want to fold the mirrors
on the way in. Thatll give you a couple of
extra inches on each side. Then, line up the van
and drive it straight in. When you back out,
dont move the steering wheel.
RAY: Right. I have a similar
situation at my house, which was built when cars
were much narrower.
TOM: And, incidentally, when my
brother was much narrower!
RAY: But I find if I dont
touch the steering wheel, I can go backward on
the same exact path that I came in on, and
navigate the garage-door pillars without problem.
TOM: And for everyone else,
this is a good reminder to make sure the car
youre about to buy will fit into your
garage before you buy it. Home remodeling is
expensive. Especially if you do the demolition
with your new car.
Sponsored by Curry Automotive
Wasnt Fast, But Always Finished
Q: I enjoyed your
article on Rex White and his new book, "Gold
Thunder." Do you recall a driver named
Herman Beam? He wasnt fast, but he always
finished and was nicknamed "The
Turtle." - Gladys, North Carolina
A: Sure do,
Gladys. The driver you ask about was a heavy-set
University of North Carolina chemistry graduate
who wore large horned-rim glasses. He looked more
like a senator or professor than a race driver.
Beam drove his No. 19 Ford Galaxie slowly on the
apron of the track, just putting in laps and
waiting for crashes and mechanical attrition to
improve his position. He figured he could make a
good living finishing races and keeping out of
trouble. He was right, and earned the respect of
the other drivers thanks to his courtesy on the
track and never causing accidents.
Beam ran a total
of 194 races in NASCARs top division from
1957 through 1963. His best finish was fourth
twice, fifth once and, thanks to attrition, he
compiled a total of 54 top-10 finishes. His
career earnings came to $42,163, with his best
year coming in 1962 when he took home $12,571 in
51 races. He also still holds a consistency
record in that he was running at the finish in 84
straight races from April 30, 1961 through March
Sponsored by Generations
This time of year
we think about inclement weather and the
experiences we have had with the results it
leaves behind. Emergencies happen everyday and we
have warning systems to let us know what measures
to take for our personal safety but we dont
have methods to prevent natural disasters so we
need to be prepared.
In recent years my
husband and I experienced a week plus without
utilities. We were not prepared but our son was.
He came to the rescue with his emergency kit and
our lives were the better for it during those
days. Think about you and your family and what
you need and put together a kit as large or small
as you will need. Include those things in
addition to the following.
includes a small fuel-driven stove and fuel,
cooking utensils waterproof matches, plastic
trash bags, duct tape, flashlights, radio, extra
batteries paper towels, disposable plates, cups
and eating utensils, and a manual can opener.
A First aid kit
containing disposable gloves, gauze, tape,
non-prescription pain relievers, scissors,
tweezers, antiseptic, sterile bandages, cleansing
agent and soap, moist towelettes and sunscreen.
Food and water for
at least 3 days including bottled water, canned
food, soups, meat, fruit, vegetables, energy
bars, dried foods, honey, peanut butter, nuts,
jams, sugar, coffee/tea, salt and pepper.
These are the
basics that most of us would use, add anything
you have a special need for such as prescription
drugs, diapers, formula, extra clothing and
dont forget your pet food.
Next week a basic
disaster plan and what you need to do to for you
and your family.