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Poll
Question: Do you favor a return to the 55MPH speed limit in the interest of saving fuel?
YES, Favor - 43 (39.1%)
NO, Oppose - 67 (60.9%)
Total Voters: 104

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Author Topic: Return to the 55 MPH speed limit?  (Read 4984 times)
Len Silva
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« on: May 05, 2008, 05:21:48 AM »

I hated it the last time it happened. I was a road warrior, working jobs all over Florida and Georgia.  Got lots of tickets the first few months after the change.

Being considerably older now, I think it might be a good idea.  It did save a lot of fuel and lives.
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HighTechRedneck
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« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2008, 07:21:20 AM »

I despised the 55 speed limit back then.  I had the sticker that said "I can't drive 55" and rarely drove that slow unless I knew there was a speed trap. 

Now days, I drive 55 by choice because of the fuel savings.  It is part of why my bus gets 7.5mpg.  On my pickup, the difference between 55 and 65 is 5mpg.  With so many busnuts cutting back on their trips or even giving up on their dream machine because of fuel cost, I would hope some are cutting back the speed as a means to keep going.

Many people slam other's choice of vehicles (SUV) as a cause of fuel prices.  But then they go flying down the freeway at 85mph in their "more sensible light weight car" burning 30%-50% more fuel then they have to.

So, even as much as I hated 55mph speed limits when I was younger, I would support them now as a means to cut back on fuel use.  But I don't expect it to lower fuel cost, because as I have said elsewhere, whatever we cut back, the newly fuel consuming 1/2 of the worlds population will quickly take up.  But perhaps at least it will slow the rapid climb and just maybe burn the fingers of some of the bid happy speculators temporarily diverting their interest in investing in oil at any cost.  (probably wishful thinking)
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jackhartjr
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« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2008, 08:01:59 AM »

Len, I don't see the problem being slowing down to save fuel because it is so high.  I see the problem being that it is so high becaused of GREED!  If the price was where it should be we wouldn't be having this conversation!

Please Len, don't take this as an attack on your thread.  I am simply saying I don't think that we should have to slow down due to the folks GREED that are setting the prices so GREEDILY high!
Jack
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Jack Hart, CDS
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boogiethecat
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« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2008, 08:14:48 AM »

Jack is right.  We shouldn't have to slow down for any reason other than we want to on our own.
Slowing down costs us a lot more than you'd think, and overall I don't think it helps.  It takes more TIME to get somewhere, resulting in increased transportation costs and
scads of wasted man-hours. And if you'll remember, the gas companies telling us that they had to raise gas prices because the slow-down was cutting into their PROFITS...
Nothing's free....
This whole fuel thing is actually fine with me... higher prices? Our fuel STILL doesn't cost as much as people in England paid for it in the 70's!!!
It's not stopping me... I'll just keep on bussin and be really happy I don't pay $4 per LITER as do many people in this world...

Let's bring back VW bugs and Honda 600's that get 30-45MPG.  Go to Europe and take a look at the cars they drive... ALL tiny as compared to ours, and they get VERY good mileage.
Smart cars for example.  GREAT idea.... http://www.smartusa.com/ Then don't worry about fuel costs....

Heh heh don't try this with your bus....  http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/smart-car-crash-tested/

Cheers
« Last Edit: May 05, 2008, 08:31:33 AM by boogiethecat » Logged

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Len Silva
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« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2008, 08:48:38 AM »

One of the issues I have I guess is just in trying to stay out of the way.  I find that if I'm driving at 55 on a two lane interstate, the 70+ traffic starts piling up around me.  Trucks struggle to break out into the fast lane and that of course, slows everything down.

I guess I feel a little guilty in that situation, where if it was the law, I wouldn't feel the same.

Len
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« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2008, 09:00:51 AM »

If the car manufacturers would get off their butts and get the Diesel powered cars into production (over 50% of cars in europe are Diesel- 65% of BMW's and Mercedes are) we would lower our fuel consumption, even with higher Diesel prices.  Example- Mini Cooper gets about 35 mpg on gasoline, Diesel over 50.  Smart car gets 45 mpg on gasoline, 60mpg on diesel and an estimated 80 as a hybrid Diesel.  I wish the car manufactures would quite making these gasoline powered hybrids, when Diesel would work.  Now a Diesel hybrid that gets over 60mpg-that's what I'm talking about.
Freightliner is making a hybrid M2 (Uhaul size) that gets 20% better fuel mileage for pickup and delivery around town.  Instead of trying to run the buses on biodiesel, I'd like to see someone figure out a hybrid.  I'm sure all of us would like a 20% increase in fuel mileage.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2008, 10:10:31 AM »

Tom, Isusu was the company that developed the Duramax Diesel for the Chevy and GMC market.  I understand they are developing a smaller one for the Colorado and Canyon that would also probably fit in the mid size chevys and other GM's.
I feel like we are headed the way of Europe in developing diesel cars.
Jack
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Jack Hart, CDS
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« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2008, 11:13:11 AM »

There are hybrid buses out there.  Our transit operator is buying close to 200 of them over the next few years.  They get 22% better mileage. 

The bad news is they cost about an extra $200,000.  The bus without hybrid technology costs less than $400,000.  The local transit operator is really happy because the federal government is paying for the buses, but the transit operator saves on fuel costs.

From a strictly financial viewpoint these buses are a disaster.  It would take at least 50 years of fuel savings to pay the extra costs of the bus.  The big thing they are promoting about the new buses is the reduction in pollution and how green they are.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2008, 12:41:44 PM »

Trucks and vehicles pulling trailers in California have to go 55 mph and I haven't noticed a problem on the freeway with faster traffic going around them. I have been there several times with the horse trailer down I5 and when there is inforcement all trucks keep it under 60 (and so was I), and every thing was flowing pretty good. I have been all over the continent with my bus at 55, 60 mph without a problem. (I do look in my mirrors). I let them go by at every opportunity on the 2 lane hwys. I get good milage too.

JC
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JC
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belfert
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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2008, 12:54:54 PM »

I had a discussion with my friends about speed for our bus trip this year.  I talked about maybe going to 60 MPH instead of 65 MPH, but they want to do 65 MPH again this year.  64 to 65 MPH in my bus is right at the torque peak of the Series 60.

I've noticed a lot of people slowing down on the interstates and it is really clogging things up.  I get over 35 MPG at the speed limit of 70, so I go 70 MPH.  The problem is I end up speeding and slowing down to pass all the slow cars.  I try to pass a car before I have to slow down, but not always possible with folks going 75 to 80 in the left lane.
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Brian Elfert - 1995 Dina Viaggio 1000 Series 60/B500 - 75% done but usable - Minneapolis, MN
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« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2008, 12:58:50 PM »

The 55 mph speed limit was created in the 1970s due to a perceived shortage of oil.  The reason for today's high prices have been throughly explored by ths board and I think we can all agree that it has nothing to do with any scarcity of oil.  I travel between my homes in New York and North Carolina at least a dozen times a year and being constrained to 55 mph would make the trip interminable.  My current car, a VW Passat, gets about 30 on the highway, but I am waiting for the return of the diesel. The new ones are supoosed to be a lot better than the older one I remeber in the 1970s.  Also, when I have taken my bus down, I get about eight mpg with a 1967 GM 40-foot suburban.
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HB of CJ
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« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2008, 01:15:26 PM »

If I decide to drive at 55 mph, it should be MY CHOICE and NOT some stupid gov-munt APPOINTED tree hugger type telling what to do.  Actually there should be no speed limits at all and we just let God sort it all out.  He he he.  But then again, like boggiethecat, we do/have owned Crown Super Coaches that cruise at 80 mph and will top out at 100 or sooss.  CROWNS FOREVER!!!  Smiley Smiley Smiley
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NJT 5573
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« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2008, 03:46:13 PM »

 When we had a 55 MPH limit the Police used any fuel that was being saved, trying to enforce it. Made alot of enemies too.

I think if your driving the Silver Bullet, and you can find a place to let the big dog eat, Let it roll. They sure ride nice at 100MPH. My old 05 (I recently sold it) had a real sweet spot at 90 MPH. It never mattered to my wife. I could say anything I wanted to her, wait 15 minutes, look over her shoulder and she would be running 90. She always made good time!

 Its a shame what electonics have done to spoil our fun. Now Mr. DDEC controls my coach and its just not the same.
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« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2008, 04:58:11 PM »

Technology and time need to move forward not backward. Want to save gas, buy a high mpg car. Time is money and we need to put our efforts into moving faster not slower and with less effort. How about striving to keep traffic moving instead of starting and stopping every quarter mile which is where the real mpg loss is. We are supposed to be living in a free country and we should have the option and freedom to get somewhere if we need to or slow down as I sometimes do in my aerodynamic brick {MCI9} to save fuel. Now if we could just get American drivers to drive with the same professionalism as German drivers {proper lane, use of mirrors, no cell phones, etc} We could all get there faster and safer.  Jim
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« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2008, 07:16:50 PM »

here's a weird piece of info...
truckers in Holland were all going 100-120km/h  between two cities on a 4 lane highway (2 lanes each way).  Government decided to do a traffic flow study, restricted the truckers to 90 km/h and they were no longer allowed in the left lane (no more passing each other and cars).  Truckers complained  "Oh no  we will take 20% longer to get from A to B !!!"  Guess what?  Flow was smoother, trucks took LESS time to get from A to B  by driving slower.  Turns out traffic flow dynamics are way weirder than fluid dynamics, engineers cannnot reliably predict the occurrance of reversing stall waves, and spontaneous (no obvious source) stoppages.
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