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Wedge Wacking Avoidance Techniques

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While the Esprit, like most mid-engined cars, is well known for its limited rearward visibility--especially when backing--my inquiry here concerns the issue of forward visibility, in particular when pulling into a parking slot that ends with a curb kerb (as has been noted here, the Esprit's front spoiler clearance is low enough to kill ants), or one's garage wall. I am unable, and I suspect most (if not all) other drivers as well, to see the front of the car. While this provides a most satisfying panoramic view whilst motoring, it can be a source of great challenge when parking.

In my garage I have strategically placed two small bricks, one per front wheel, to give notice of the appropriate stopping point that avoids unwanted modifications to my pride and joy, yet allows the car to be pulled forward far enough to close the garage door without interference. I am aware of the "suspended tennis ball against the windscreen" technique, but find that methodology not in harmony with my inner chi, and when not at home would require arboreal assistance (and ladder stowage) for each parking spot. Transporting the bricks around in the boot with me, while possibly providing an incremental gain in rear wheel traction, seems a bit on the "uncool" side as well, and in any case would involve the same degree of "trial and error" placement that the garage setup originally involved, but each and every time the car was parked. Way too much caloric expenditure.

Fortunately, I have found that the standard "pucker factor" visual cues have been of sufficient magnitude to have prevented any damages to date. Nonetheless I am seeking the advice of others faced with this dilemma, in an effort to become a more efficient user of the available space. Have you any recommendations/techniques/geometrical tricks/etc. that might enlighten me in this quest?

TIA,

John


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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I always found it helped to turn on the headlamps. First you can then see the upraised pods which are fairly close to the front of the car. If you are getting close to a wall, watching the reflections of the headlamps on the wall can give guidance on how close you are. As the reflections get smaller, you are getting closer and you soon learn what looks like a good distance. If the headlamps suddenly go our accompanied by a crashing noise, you are waaay to close to the wall.


S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE

 

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Maybe you need these John: link

or if you want to really cool you could install a front/rear view camera.

It is a good question though. Even knowing to be careful and still running up on a parking stop or curb a time or two, I just stop well short anymore.


1995 S4s

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Back when I had my Elan I had the solution. The spoiler times 2, I had one on the car and the other at the paint shop. When I damaged the one on the car I went round to the paint shop and swapped them over, simple.

Not so the Esprit (whole front bumper) and probably a couple of days to R&R. So the front needs guarding with one's life, and at 5'4" I have a nice view of the instrument pod, at home I use the 2 lumps of 4x2 anchored to floor technical, too low to damage the spoiler too high to misinterpret the warning (unless p!$$ed).

As to backing the car in, well in another thread I'm currently repairing and repainting the rear valance, damaged backing into a low (unseen kerb) need I say more. :respect:

And I've just remembered my first Elan had after market reverse lights, worked on the dambusters principle, when the beams meet you were 9' away from the conveniently high enough wall for them to beam onto.

Edited by Roger the Dodger

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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worked on the dambusters principle

And to take the idea further, you could fit a pair of cheap laser pointer units into the headlight pods. Adjust to meet at a suitable distance from wall.

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I have installed front and rearward cameras. But lifting the headlights will also do.


Ciao,

JB

'88 Excel SE - monaco white

'99 Elise 111 - azure blue �

'87 TurboEsprit - calypso red

'02 BMW 325ci convertible - diamond black

wwwlotusexceldebannernew300eu5.jpg

http://excelregister.lotusexcel.de

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I've heard a ping pong ball hanging from the ceiling is a good idea. String it up to touch the screen when you're in just the right place and when you return keep driving until it touches the screen again!


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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I use a small child to squish up against the wall. When they stop whining it's time to stop driving forward.

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I personally get the Missus to park the car.....that way any damage I can shout and curse whilst keeping my impeccable driving record!!!! :respect:

and no before anyone askes it was not me who crashed at Castle coomb this year.......honest just a cloned copy of my car

Edited by waynef

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Having added twice in 8 months of ownership to my lower lip damage I was thinking of strapping a small childs mattress to the front to curtail any more damage or the carpet they put on boat jetties to save the gelcoat or this;

post-3282-1245942563_thumb.png


Heaven is where the police are British, the chefs Italian, the mechanics German, the lovers French and it is all organized by the Swiss. Hell is where the police are German, the chefs British, the mechanics French, the lovers Swiss and it is all organized by the Italians.

You make something idiotproof, they'll make a better idiot

You think professional is expensive, just wait until you pay for amateur.

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Ping pong balls and bricks in the garage are all good solutions.

Out on the road I use reflections, eg a shop window or a car parked beside where I'm parking. Then I can see how far I have left. I don't go right to the limit (or the kerb) with this but it usually gets me close enough to be out of harms way. Tip: when you are looking to the side in the reflection while parking remember to keep an eye out in the direction your moving!

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To protect the front bumper in the garage I'm utterly depending on the Parking Mat:

http://www.shopwiki.co.uk/Parking+Mat

I'm sure you can find something similar in the States. Very clever, has two ramps - a small one which you ease the car over then a big one which will stop the car dead even if you are still carrying some speed.

Regarding the lower spoiler and stopping in front of a kerb when out and about, that's another matter since you have zero visibility of the kerb. Especially tricky with the S350 spoiler - the rubber lip is okay but the fibreglass overlay covering the top of the lip always gets it...

Edited by neal

May: DON'T hit it with a hammer!

Clarkson: Why?

May: Cause it's the tool of a pikey.

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Personally speaking, and in my experience I have found that not putting it in the garage helps plenty.

Or failing that get down to specsavers

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I have finally found the solution to the problem!

Just attach flag of your choice, they also come with a nice cover to make the mount clean when pole is removed.

post-3282-1245965624_thumb.jpg


Heaven is where the police are British, the chefs Italian, the mechanics German, the lovers French and it is all organized by the Swiss. Hell is where the police are German, the chefs British, the mechanics French, the lovers Swiss and it is all organized by the Italians.

You make something idiotproof, they'll make a better idiot

You think professional is expensive, just wait until you pay for amateur.

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Hi All,

Pretty sure this would work but not sure if people could be bothered to make it, just fit a simple device to the front spoiler, like a brake light switch or somthing similiar, just a few inches long sticking out the centre of the lower spoiler, wire it up and have a light in the car or small buzzer so that when its depressed its lights or sounds!

There must be a decent strengh switch out there thats not to intrusive and strong enough to do the job!

Regards danny


A

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I back in to the garage -which I find easier to do in the Esprit than in my (much hated) Volvo S60 grrrrrrr but I digress- to the point at which the little green light on the automatic garage door opener interference device (mounted on the door tracks) illuminates.


"At home, I have a King Sized bed. Now, I don't know any Kings, but I would imagine if one were to come over, he would be comfortable." -Mitch Hedberg

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Lots of good ideas and suggestions. Much appreciated, guys.

Trevor, thanks for the tip on using the headlight pods. :thumbup:

Jim, followed your "link" and was all fired up to punch the Paypal button 'till I saw the included "hole saw" :unsure: in the package contents display picture and got spooked.

Pete, great idea about using the intersecting laser beams, but it might make me cross-eyed in the process, or bring on "target fixation" issues. :hope:

Jimmy, any possibility of posting a pic of the camera(s) installation? :unworthy:

Bibs, I could possibly deal with the ping pong ball, as opposed to a tennis ball, but will have to further consult my Feng Shui manual. :rambo:

Graham, I have found that a pinioned cat works almost as well. :shock:

Neal, the "Parking Mat" is an ingenious and elegant solution. Much classier than my bricks. :thumbsup:

Alex, ever the pragmatist! Does Cheshire not get 2 inch hail like Austin? Thought not... :)

Bob, does the flagpole come with a recording of "Hail to the Chief"? :yes:

With a little research I have located an alternative solution to the garage wall problem. This is the unused "bumper block" from the defunct Brooklyn, NY, Canal St. station, now available on Ebay, along with the bridge. spaceball.gif

spaceball.gif

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Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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You realise that with a bit of thought and ingenuity there maybe ideas there you could mix and natch as it were. Why not try using a brick tied to piece of string to smite the windscreen if you go too far forward. That should get your attention. :unworthy:


Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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Jimmy, any possibility of posting a pic of the camera(s) installation? :unworthy:

spaceout.gifspaceout.gif

Sure,

Rear camera between the lock and the licence plate

registry_gallery-25-1246001989_thumb.jpg

front camera under the bumper, next to LH fog lamp

registry_gallery-25-1246003458_thumb.jpg

I have uploaded bigger pictures to the garage.

Edited by jimmybondi

Ciao,

JB

'88 Excel SE - monaco white

'99 Elise 111 - azure blue �

'87 TurboEsprit - calypso red

'02 BMW 325ci convertible - diamond black

wwwlotusexceldebannernew300eu5.jpg

http://excelregister.lotusexcel.de

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easy

buy an esprit with a broken cambelt, put in your parent's garage, close the door.

absolutely no chance of parking damage whatsoever....

simples! :unworthy:

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Roger, I am unable to stop chuckling at your suggestion. :unworthy: A really "incentive driven" choice!

Thanks, Jimmy. Very unobstrussively done. And the display screens are where?

I am quite familiar with this "long term immobilization" technique, Neil, having employed it with my [now sold] Europa for 25+ yrs. Works quite well, even with an intact cambelt (chain in this instance).


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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Found a better image of the front camera:

ejectorseatyourejokingwh6.jpg


Ciao,

JB

'88 Excel SE - monaco white

'99 Elise 111 - azure blue �

'87 TurboEsprit - calypso red

'02 BMW 325ci convertible - diamond black

wwwlotusexceldebannernew300eu5.jpg

http://excelregister.lotusexcel.de

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Wow! Pure "Bond," Jimmy. :unworthy:


Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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How many rounds a minute does that little baby fire, and where can I get one. :unworthy: I feel some road rage comin' on.


Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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