Dedicated Motorcycle Parking Reduces Cost, Congestion

Traffic is the bane of all commuters, and once you reach your destination you have to park. In most parts of the world, motorcycles and scooters are what many people turn to in order to make the commute faster, easier, and cheaper. The U.S. is not most parts of the world, but were getting better.

When a commuter rides to work on his/her motorcycle, they accomplish several things. They make the highways and streets less congested, because they take up less space. Their lighter vehicles do less damage to the road surface. And when they park, they take up less parking spacesometimes.

Its that parking aspect that some communities have taken to improve by designating certain parking areas specifically for motorcycles. And yet, in other communities, its almost as if they want to discourage people from riding. Thats how different the laws are.

Lets say youre making your commute on your slim, light, Suzuki GSX-R600. If you work in Edmonton, WA, you can park alongside a lot of other bikes in special, no-charge areas. Not only do you save the money you would otherwise pay to park, but with six or more bikes fitting easily into the space one car would use, youre helping other motorists find their parking spaces more easily.

In other cities, however, you would face an entirely different proposition parking your bike. Some cities require all vehicles to park parallel to the curb in areas designated for parallel parking. That might leave you with room for only two bikes is that space, and thats if the city allows more than one vehicle per parking space. Some do not, even when youre talking motorcycles.

The absurdity of that mandate was demonstrated a couple years ago when one city police department started coming down hard on bikes they considered improperly parked. The bikers banded together and appealed to the city to change their rules but no relief was provided. So a plan was hatched. Early one morning, before most commuters were arriving at work, several hundred motorcyclists came in very early and parked one bike to a parking space all over the downtown area. As far as you could see there were acres of unused space between these solitary motorcycles but nowhere at all for people in cars to park. The city quickly changed its ordinances.

While some four-wheeled motorists might complain that it is unfair for motorcyclists to get preferential parking, the fact is, designated motorcycle parking can be created using curb space that is currently going unused. In Denver the citys traffic department was hard at work on a designated motorcycle parking plan when the recession hit. Although it would have cost very little, with budgets in deficit, any non-essential costs were eliminated and the project stalled before it got off the ground.

Nevertheless, the department was working on an eminently sensible plan. City blocks are frequently marked with paint to designate parking spaces, but often there is not enough room near the corners for another space, even though safety research might show that parking would be OK closer to the corner. Voila. Put a little paint on the asphalt and designate this space for motorcycles. Its just that simple. Now commuters who own motorcycles are encouraged to ride rather than drive because they have convenient, free parking, and that helps everyone else in cars. Its a win-win. Plus, motorists who see motorcyclists getting such a nice benefit might decide its time for them to buy that bike theyve wanted for so long and start riding to work, too.

Automotive Navigation Heads Into The Cloud

According to the market research firm iSuppli Corp., automotive navigation systems increasingly are transitioning from standalone devices to connected systems capable of accessing up-to-date map data and other information from the cloud.

About 20 percent of in-vehicle navigation systems sold in 2010 will include connectivity, either through an embedded modem or a tethered mobile device, amounting to 1.8 million units. This will rise to 90 percent in 2017, amounting to 27 million units.

Cloud-sourced navigation is an evolution of connected navigation systemsa trend that started several years ago. Traditional car navigation systems use databases stored on the device itself but future navigation systems will rely on information that is stored in the cloud. Maps, points of interest, traffic and weather are examples of cloud-sourced content that is enabled through connectivity.

Rising sales of navigation systems with two-way connectivity are being fueled by the advantages of connecting to the cloud, said Phil Magney, Vice President (Automotive Research) at iSuppli. By connecting to the cloud, navigation systems give motorists access to the most up-to-date databases in the world. Traffic, weather, and points of interest change constantly, so access to the cloud is vital.

Static databases will become a thing of the past in automotive navigation during the next 10 years, said Egil Juliussen, Principal Analyst & Fellow (Automotive Research) at iSuppli. Connectivity means motorists will have multiple options in terms of on-board and off-board navigation resources.

On-board connected navigation systems that store maps on the device will refresh periodically to reflect changes and updates. In contrast, off-board navigation systemswhich access a server for map datawill need constant connectivity. Both employ cloud-based data access.

Traffic information is the leading cloud-sourced service for navigation systems, which is constantly refreshed to reflect the latest updates. Several more cloud-based navigation services are being employed including weather information, Point of Interest (POI) search, destination download, traffic camera visuals and map updates.

Worldwide sales of all types of navigation systems will exceed 100 million units in 2010, with smart phones and Portable Navigation Devices (PNDs) accounting for the bulk of the units. Slightly more than 9 million in-vehicle navigation systems will be sold in 2010, dwarfed by the nearly 100 million PND and smart phone sales.

Smart phones will generate the growth in the navigation segment. PND shipments during the next decade are forecasted to be at about 40 million units. In comparison, 330 million smart phones with navigation will be sold in 2017.

Smartphone navigation increasingly is becoming free of charge and the use case is mostly in the autoalthough pedestrian navigation is beginning to emerge. By 2017, many of the smart phone-based navigation solutions will be integrated within the vehicle system where the display is shown on the head-unit and the voice guidance and voice input are through the vehicles Human Machine Interface (HMI).

Visit to know more about iSupplis Navigation, Telematics & Digital Entertainment services.

Automotive Suspension Parts – Macpherson Struts

You could possibly very well have been informed that you have “MacPherson Struts” in your vehicle and wondered with the dealership or large box keep car assistance team technological article writer what on earth are these car or truck pieces and just how do they differ from excellent outdated fashioned ( and economical ) vehicle shock absorbers.

It is comparatively easy to spot if you do have MacPherson Struts. A suspension system with Macs might be very easily identified by even automotive repair novices by looking for an incredibly large and thick tube form strut connected to your wheel assembly in the base and slanting upwards away from your wheel. A coil spring is visible from your outside from the strut on the major, and an A-shaped arm operating horizontally from your base from the strut so its’ too legs attach for the frame.

When the MacPherson strut has the spring around the strut assembly, the shock absorber spindle and spring is often a mixed unit held in site with the best through the upper mount assembly and at the bottom through the ball joint and reduced handle arm. The shock absorber is really built into the MacPherson struts’ outer housing. The coil spring by itself is held in site by a decrease seat welded on the strut casing and an upper seat bolted towards the shock-absorber piston rod. In flip the upper mount bolts for your auto, truck, and bus or S.U.V. system.

Any looseness inside the control-arm bushings, ball joint, or strut-rod bushings or stabilizer bar inbound links would necessarily mean replacement. The strut assembly alone ought to be checked closely for spring fatigue, bad damping attributes, binding and popping that could nicely happen when the wheels are turned or rolled – must be checked in between for leaks between the shock shaft and shaft housing. By bouncing the suspension, verify for binding which indicates a possible bent shock absorber shaft. If any of those problems exist the strut may have to be taken apart for services and that is a position for which any back lawn mechanic really should genuinely look for vehicle mechanic skilled enable and aid.

The suspension components earning up this crucial element of driving contain the chassis or frame, coil springs, leaf springs, dampeners including struts and shock absorbers, and anti-swing or torsion bars. A suspension system commonly includes a combination of all those aforementioned parts. Every has an important job in the method, and all work with each other within their respective roles to keep your motor vehicle to the street and at a manageable experience.

Removing Scuffs and Scratches on Your Cars Plastic Bumpers!

Your cars plastic bumpers dont always need replacement when minor damage crop up such as scuffs and scratches. Repairing these scuffs and scratches are not as difficult as you imagined or as complicated as fixing up scratches on sheet metal that are likely to form rust.

Save time, money and effort repairing your damaged bumper with these simple and convenient steps:

Materials Needed:
Automotive Clear Coat
Automotive Paint
Automotive Primer
Dish Soap
Grease and Wax Remover
Paper Towels
Sand Paper

Step 1:Clean the scratched area with dish soap to get rid of any wax or dust particles on the surface. Use a piece of cloth enfolded around a finger to get hold of the scratches and scuffs. Wash the soap entirely and pat dry the surface using paper towels before proceeding to the next step.

Step 2:Check the intensity of the scratches and scuffs. Run your fingernail tip across the scratch and if it can hold the rut, this means that the scratch is deep, otherwise, the scratch is shallow.

Step 3:Polish the scratch with 120-grit sandpaper until it becomes smooth, even and free from tough edges. Bear in mind that plastics are softer than metal so ensure not to sand too much in one spot to avoid having a low part on the surface.

Step 4:Spray about two light coats of automotive primer on the polished spot. Wait for about 30 minutes allowing the coat of primer to dry.

Step 5:Polish the automotive primer evenly with 300-grit sandpaper until it becomes soft to touch. Swab the spot with grease and wax remover to take away oil and dust elements.

Step 6: While holding the spray can about eight inches away from the exterior, spray two to three lean coats of automotive paint straight on the scratch. Let each coat dry for 30 minutes prior to applying the next coat.

Step 7:Using the same procedures as with spraying the paint, apply two coats of automotive clear coat. Let the automotive clear coat dry completely which takes up to 24 hours before attempting to drive the car.

Getting rid of the scuffs and scratches from your cars plastic bumper can be costly especially when the job is done at a professional auto care clinic. However, you can save a lot if you do the repair yourself.

The Benefits Of Using Rebuilt Engines

Many vehicle owners may be unaware it is not always necessary to buy a brand new engine when the old one in their car fails to work. As in clothes and furniture, there are also second hand engines that although may not have the newest parts can still perform its needed functions. These are the so-called rebuilt or remanufactured engines.

Rebuilt engines are those that have been dismantled, checked, cleaned and their parts repaired or replaced for upgrading purposes. Using this type of engine known as repowering is less expensive compared to purchasing a new engine or vehicle and it can even lengthen your cars life if you choose the right one for your vehicle. Some parts may still be the original or they can be slightly used or they can also be brand new. Whats important to remember is to always ask for a warranty from manufacturers. Others may provide a certified staff and checks on used engines or a combination of both.
Involved in the process of rebuilding engines are the reforming of the piston-cylinder system, smoothing and lubricating of all bearings, regrounding of crankshaft or camshaft and connecting of rods that have been gauged. Replacement of other parts including the timing belt and gaskets may also be needed.

A big advantage of using rebuilt engines is its low cost despite the intensive labor that went into manufacturing it. There are many online vendors these days that offer cheap rebuilt and used engines or motors of various brands allowing vehicle owners to gain sufficient savings. Among the popular brands that are in demand are the Ford engines as well as those from Japanese-made vehicles such as Toyota and Honda.

Another benefit of rebuilding engines is the fact that they are now able to meet the latest original equipment manufacturer (OEM) specifications. With improvements in OEM specifications different from the original, your engine has a good chance of running smoother and more efficiently than before.

In line with this trend of using rebuilt engines, the Automotive Repair Council (ARC) is taking steps to inform consumers about the advantages of installing a rebuilt engine and availing of machine shop services instead of buying a new or used vehicle or using a used engine. The council advocates that using a remanufactured engine is as good or even better than the original one. It is now distributing copies of its 16-page consumer booklet to its members in various states while providing relevant information on its website.

If youre one person considering using rebuilding engines or rebuilding your existing engine, Low Mileage Engines can help you. This company sells only certified remanufactured used car and truck engines both domestic and foreign models to include Chevrolet, Cadillac, Audi, Hyundai, BMW, Jeep, Toyota, Nissan and Lincoln. Low Mileage Engines supplies engines with verified mileage via the Carfax mileage verification.