Le Mans or Bust

Archive for the 'Musings' Category


Wednesday, June 21st, 2006

We’re back.  We arrived at about half ten, unloaded, and went our seperate ways.  I’ll give the Espace this, it was a lot faster than DYK even if it was lacking in style.  Amazingly they seem to have constructed a large number of ‘Private Roads’ between Kent and York that certainly weren’t there on the way down.

I’m now sat in my flat having had a beer, and getting ready to put the nails in the coffin of the trip.

A big thanks again to our sponsors, and also to everyone who’s followed our progress along the way.  Keep an eye on the site as there’s more to come, and we have to start planning for next year….

Post Mortem

Tuesday, June 20th, 2006

We established what was wrong (see the post mortem here) no thanks to the RAC, who - when they heard what was wrong - decided that they wouldn’t send out a mechanic, just a recovery truck to take us to a garage. We drove there even with a knackered steering assembly, but thanks for the kind offer.

Finally DYK drove proudly onto the breaker’s van which then drove off taking our valliant steed on its final journey.

The final leg of our journey will be completed thanks to Enterprise who will be picking us up in about an hour.


Tuesday, June 20th, 2006

That’s it.  It’s over.  DYK is no more.  The car breaker has been called, and our journey will be completed in a hire car. Enterprise Rent-A-Car are picking us up at 4pm and taking us back to Dover to complete the paperwork, and then it’ll be a leisurely trundle up the motorway to York.

Rust in Pieces

If anyone at any of our workplaces is reading this, we’re likely to be a bit tired tomorrow.  Cut us some slack.  We’ve just lost a beloved friend.

Three quarters

Tuesday, June 20th, 2006

Yes, we’re back in the country, but don’t let’s get ahead of ourselves. We’re all grubby northerners, by birth or employment, and we still have the same distance to go today as we had yesterday.

Fortunately we’re feeling considerably fresher today. We’ve greatly enjoyed the warm hospitality, Chez Saunders. It was nice to sleep indoors and not to be awoken by the sun attempting to cook us inside our tents. We will leave shortly having eaten and drunk our fill. Thanks Mr and Mrs Saunders!

Back in Blighty

Monday, June 19th, 2006

We’re back. There were problems. Aside from the problem with wheels trying to fall off that you already know about, we were also short of time. We made the ferry with just minutes to spare, and anyone who asked for couscous or duck in a jar from the hypermarche is going to be sorely disappointed, because sadly, we had no time.

There was excitement at the end of the ferry journey when Tom managed to lose the keys. Plum. A deck hand found then and gave them to Chris, who, having not driven the taxi before, almost reversed into the poor people behind us. No harm done, though. Chris’s cat-like skills saved the day. Since then we’ve been in the pub for a couple, and now we’re at Orde’s parents’ house, enjoying a warm welcome and looking forward to the opportunity to sleep indoors.

There’s food on the go, so I’m off. Chris looked hungry, so I need to act quickly.

and they’re off…

Wednesday, June 14th, 2006

(In case you’re wondering, it’s not actually Tom writing this, as he’s - hopefully - driving a big ol’ black cab towards the A1. I’m Mel, long-suffering fiancee, provider of swarfega, packed lunches & contacts at Yorkshire Tea.)
Well, they set off on time (according to the principles of Bennett-time anyway, which allows that by setting off more or less exactly 30 minutes behind schedule, an excuse is provided for driving faster. Unfortunately, the taxi’s inability to go faster wasn’t considered in the calculations… Oh well, they have eight hours to get to Dover), fully stickered-up and with a big cooler full of caffeinated substances and savoury snacks.

It only remains for me to wish them well and ask you to keep an eye on their antics - and if you’re in the vicinity of the A1/ M20/ E402/ N12 give them a wave as you pass!

Pre-flight checks…

Wednesday, June 14th, 2006

Radio           -  Check.  Connection between facia & body cleaned with IPA.

Wipers         -  Check.  They work (for the moment) and I didn’t even have to do much to fix them!

Taxi Signs   -   Check.  Wiring hidden (behind Gaffer tape) & both working

Fuel            -   Check.  Filled up to the brim with Chip fat & with a spare can in the boot

Oil & ATF    -    Check.  All levels as they should be.

Indicators    -   Check.  Relay removed & cleaned with IPA (wonderful stuff).

Headlights    -   Check.  They work!

All that remains is to wish us luck which you can do by clicking on the n comments section below and leaving us a message.

I’m off to get some kip before the drive tonight.

Look mum!

Sunday, June 4th, 2006

I did something. Chris’s sticker post reminded me; I made some lovely logos for use of stickers, or t-shirts or leaflets. I’ve attached one. Hopefully.

I see no reason why everyone we know should not have a t-shirt with this on. You can print them yourselves, mind.


I know it’s a bit “budget” looking, but fortunately that fits right in with the whole project.

[Long string of expletives]

Saturday, June 3rd, 2006

The taxi has a new game, it’s called trying to kill Tom. I didn’t think that an Automatic Diesel could stall, but it can. Frequently. In fact, every time you brake to slow down below a certain speed, the engine tried to cut out as the revs drop and you also lose power steering etc. I think it’s to do with the wiring (of course), but it did it as I was making a right turn infront of an oncoming Double Decker Bus, which was rather entertaining….

In other bad news, the handbrake has breathed its last (without taking the rear drums apart for serious re-adjustment; possible but unlikely given the time constraints). Also ‘Park’ is still not selectable without some new cable in the gearbox selector, which is going to make for an interesting Ferry Crossing… A solution is at hand, but does anyone want to donate a brick or two just in case?

Good news (for there is some) consists of the original battery reporting for duty in full health, the lights still working, the fuel line replacements are not letting air into the system & DYK fires up first time. We also have a working taxi sign and other electrics thanks to the kindness of Ian and his probe (insert joke here). It’s now wired off the ‘mystery button’ which is a mystery no more, it now makes us glow!

More work will be carried out hopefully on Wednesday evening, but in the mean time, I have a beggin request out there. Does anyone have a spare tyre I could have/borrow please? Any taxi drivers out there that want to contribute to a worthy cause, I can swap you a bald one for a week (a tempting offer I know). Alternatively, if anyone has a 175/80/ R16 tyre in a garage/shed, then please contact us!


Get your stickers here.

Thursday, June 1st, 2006

With all this promotion of others, I decided we needed to do a little more self promotion.

Using some of Phil’s test t-shirt designs, and wresting with an Aladdins Cave of stickers in the stationary cupboard at work, I came up a 4×5 sticker page layout, which we can use to sticker anything that stands still long enough. Heres the design if anyone in the world wants to print their own.


If the work stationary monitor or my boss is reading this, of course I’m only jesting (ho ho), I did it all in my own time using my own materials.

I’m thinking of targeting the captive audience in the toilets at the Isle Of Wight festival next weekend. I’m sure anyone who’s ever been in a festival toilet knows that looking ahead at the stickers and adverts for “mooncups” is much more fun than looking at the mountain of festering filth below you.

J885 DYK