Le Mans or Bust

Archive for the 'Pimp My Ride' Category

Warning to other traffic.

Tuesday, June 13th, 2006

It’s only polite really to warn others on the road about the cab, so I’ve knocked up a couple of signs, commonly seen on the back of European trucks.

It should let approaching traffic know that we’re not messing about, but that 56mph really is our top speed.


Stick ‘em up

Sunday, May 21st, 2006

Well, we’re now stickered up with the branding of our current sponsors: Chilled Heat and Yorkshire Tea. Although, as Chris pointed out, the placement of a graphic bearing the wording “Yorkshire Tea Served Here” immediately below the sign saying “No food or drink to be consumed in this vehicle” was more than a little ironic.

Side View

There’s still space on the Taxi for your company’s logo - just leave a comment if you would be interested in 2000 miles of rolling advertising to some of Europe’s most commited, sports car owning, race fans! [end shameless supplication]

Forwards not backwards

Sunday, May 21st, 2006

For the first time this weekend we actually seemed to fix more problems than create new ones.

  • The stereo decided to “just work” despite nothing having changed since we last looked at it
  • Tom replaced the knackered fuel hose in double quick time
  • Carpet was laid in the boot to keep our luggage clean
  • The roof sign is back in place (although not powered up yet)
  • The rear speaker is wired up and working
  • The dashboard is back in place
  • The lights finally work properly after Orde rewired the whole unit
  • Lots of lovely stickers now decorate the taxi

It was all going perfectly until we decided to go for a trial run and discovered the battery was dead as a doornail, oh well.

I have added a whole raft of photos from the day to the Gallery.

Before : IMG_0061.JPGAfter :IMG_0315.JPG

My work here is done

Thursday, May 18th, 2006

Borrowed my Dads jigsaw and cut out two replacement pieces of perspex to sandwich a new sign between. (I now have a huge lump of perspex left over that will last me the rest of my natural life)

Knocked together a new sign using a Friday 13th Font 

If anyone wants to make a better one, make note that you will have to remove the sign from the roof completely and take it all apart again, theres no quick-switch option.


Further Progress

Thursday, May 18th, 2006

The bulb holder that was inside the sign is totally shot, probably due to the bulb heat and fire.

True to the spirit of Dyk I have shoe-horned in a 12v neon tube from an old light in there. Its a very snug fit although I’m going to look at popping some sort of padding to reduce the risk of it breaking during the journey (bubble wrap, the tube shouldn’t get hot right ?)

The light can run off any working 12v we find, or from the cigarette adapter as we shouldnt need the laptop running much.
I popped in the the old taxi sign and lit it up, it looks great even if I do say so myself.


Sign Progress

Wednesday, May 17th, 2006

My first major task was getting the thing apart, years of outdoor exposure had left all the main bolts holding the thing together completely rusted solid.

I decided to cut my losses and drill out the bolts, not something i’ve ever done before but I got away with all my limbs and vital organ still intact.

This left me with the following heap of pieces, including the original burnt out taxi sign behind the mysterious filthy yellow plastic.


I’m pretty convinced this isn’t Dyks original taxi sign, the bolts that secure it to the roof are not in the original holes and more importantly under the layer of tatty black paintwork its clearly from one of those burgandy coloured taxis, you can just about make it out if you squint at this picture.


I invested in a sanding flap wheel and quickly got rid of most of the loose paint and rust (admitted onto the spare bedroom floor much to my taxi widows dismay)

Then today I got busy with the spray paint and gave it all a lovely new shiny coat of black


Obstacles are only there to be destroyed

Thursday, April 20th, 2006

The “ghetto satnav” system is now fully jury rigged and operational.

Technical problems and solutions for geeks and spods :-

Fooling Autoroute into thinking it’s installing from a CDROM when you don’t have a CDROM - MagicISO and DaemonTools.

Fooling Autoroute into using a signal from a Fortuna GPSmart which uses a fixed non-standard baud rate - Franson GPSGate.

Although in the end I ditched the Fortuna which is horribly unreliable and keeps turning itself off in favour of my Garmin Geko 201 which has a cigarette lighter power lead of its own too..

And there I am, at my house ! The next challenge is to take it out and let it direct me as a test.

Ghetto Satnav

Take ze next left.

Wednesday, April 19th, 2006

I’ve started work on a SatNav setup using only accumulated junk that I wouldn’t be upset to see inside a burning taxi at the side of French Motorway.

A mighty 266Mhz Panasonic Toughbook has been called into service, with the addition of my first GPS (theres a good idea for Fisher-Price) which will need a good wrap of Duck tape to hold the innards in place.

I’m currently wrestling with installing Autoroute 2006 on a machine with only a floppy drive but thats the sort of challenge I must embrace.

I gather Autoroute 2006 will talk to me, I wonder if it will adjust its accent to continental travel ?

J885 DYK