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Discussion Starter #1
This started off as part of a reply elsewhere, then turned into a bit of a rant. Forgive me for dribbling pish!

Back in the day (before my time), car ownership meant weekends were spent maintaining your motor, adjusting points, doing the plugs etc.

Now, due to longer service schedules and more advanced tech, we have forgotten as a nation, how to do even basic checks on our motors.

Maintenance used to always be something seen as part of cost of ownership. People budgeted for it, and learned how to do it.

It has now gotten to the point where the average driver is just a user, a consumer, and that is where things start to go wrong.

Now people don't maintain motors, they head down to easy car credit and finance another one.

That is why as "enthusiasts", everyone on a car forum is considered niche. Even though we don't all stink of gear oil and recite gear ratios in the pub, knowing a bit about your motor is considered unfashionable these days.

Nearly every household has at least 1 motor, so you would think that on that basis, car forums would be jam packed with folks eager to know more about that expensive shopping trolley sat on the drive.

It is the first thing I do when I get a new motor or motorbike - sign up to the relevant forums and get a look at what's what.

Folks are ignorant to the fact their machine needs maintained, things break, they hit & run on a forum, buy a different brand, repeat.

It seems less people are interested in helping themselves, even though I reckon that the majority of failures on a machine is down to prior bad maintenance, poor servicing, and shoddy workmanship.

I think it is sad that basic knowledge and skills are being lost with each generation of driver, and each generation is getting less and less involved with their motors.

So my question is : "Are car enthusiasts an endangered species?"

Discuss...........
 

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No - there will always be people like me. Those who will do all they can to avoid paying expensive garage bills.

I'm not particularly interested in cars, I am interested in saving a few quid and spending it on something else.

For me - when it comes to a new car or new conservatory or shorter working week or whatever - the car comes last on my list.

A nice car is a magnetic for tea leaves and those who can't afford a new car because they are claiming benefits. In their warped minds - if they can't have a new car then neither can I. Plebs.

I spend most of my leisure time in the bungalow/garden - not the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I'm not particularly interested in cars, I am interested in savings a few quid and spending it on something else.
Yeah, but that by default means you take at least a passing interest in what your motor is doing at any given time.

The reason why doesn't really matter.

The fact is you are willing and able to help yourself, or find out how when you need too.

And I bet your motor is at least in decent nick?
 

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Hi

I guess i am with clanless :thumb: in general here a car for me is a tool and i think many people who run out and buy new cars on credit forget how much the credit costs. So enthusiast no but definitely practical and in truth because its the only way i can afford a car.

I know its a popular believe that simple cars are cheap but of course not always the typical buyer of that kind of car really does buy it on a shoestring so when its second hand be ready to replace everything

Manufacturers give long warranty because they know its not likely many will keep the car, dealers claim service history backed up by a stamp in a book and people are sucked in.

I have ran new cars and i found that waiting for someone to key it was more headache than benefit and of course when they go wrong and its a new model dealers don't have a clue what's wrong

Will people stop doing maintenance probably because you will find it hard to get parts and with electric vehicles the battery alone will make running older cars very expensive.

I for one joined when i got my pug and boy i have had a baptism of fire if the car goes ok now then i am laughing as most basic stuff is changed so my fingers are crossed

Wait for Europe making changes that will make life harder for car owners :lol::nod:
 
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There's always going to be those of us who as the wife put's it tinker with cars. Personally I enjoy it but don't have the time like I once had, but I know plenty of people who haven't got a clue about their car some don't even check the oil until the warning light comes on :eek:.

When I get a new to me car and the mileage is low I tend to keep it garage maintained just in case I change it sooner than normal but when age and miles get to the point it doesn't really effect the value I start servicing it myself.

Cars are just getting too complicated for the majority to take interest.

Who remembers the day's when a car came with screwdrivers, pliers and spanners? They don't even come with a spare wheel these day's.

Peugeot Planet owner, Doncaster
 
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Some excellent points raised. I don't think that car enthusiasts are an endangered species. Plenty of excellent folk on here who have built up a massive amount of knowledge and repair techniques. Personally this place has saved me a fortune.

I suspect it's a case that there are a hell of a lot more idiots with cars and with better access to the internet.
 

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somethin i have had to learn since gettin into bikes that the older lads know all about is how to tune carbs and adjust them. Im only 27 and have never had to adjust carbs before or balance them. Points i have never done, but i have built a few drift cars and a couple of street cars.
Bein a grease monkey will never die out, no computer can change a wheel bearin or change the oil from a gearbox.
With the new machines at work they are startin to self diagnose them selves, or at least point us in the right direction, we use it like a sat nav, use it as an aid and not gospel lol.
There is enough of us penny pinchers and curious folk out there to keep the enthusiasm alive and well
 
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Me I'm interested for 2 reasons

1. I'm a tight wad and dislike paying someone for job I can do myself the very same reason that I have just converted a toilet and separate cupboard into a utillity room

2. I treat it as a hobby which I can earn a little extra cash from whilst looking after friends and families cars :D

So on that note while yes I believe that enthusiasts are getting few and far between I don't think that we will die out all together a bit like the Jedi Nation :nono:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Some decent replies there, cheers.

I suppose I was too polite when I said enthusiasts though, that I was a kind of catch all for anyone willing to learn a wee bit, or turn a nut on their motor, no matter the reason, whether it be for saving a few quid, hobby or whatnot.

What I really meant is are people getting too stupid to do basic checks and maintenance? Are people no longer interested in the simple stuff?

Example 1; I had a lass tell me about her new fancy gel cooled engine. On her Micra.
Needless to say, the head gasket was gone and the oil emulsified. She had asked her man about it, who spoke to a mate, and that is what they came up with.

Example 2; Sat in the services last week, there is a British plated motor with the bonnet open. I bimbled over and there is a polish lad attempting to change the battery because "it keeps going flat'. Lad has another one sat on the passenger floor, so 3 batteries total. I tell him to try an alternator belt, since his is missing. WTF?

Example 3; Lad has an engine failure. Tells me the oil light has been on, and he's added more, but light won't go out. He has been filling the hydraulic tank with engine oil for the last month.

It just seems to me like basic common sense is no longer a part of car ownership, and that more and more people neglect the basics until they cause major issues.

And I don't understand why. Every manufacturer out there has at least a few unofficial forums, where all the info is freely available. I just don't get it.
 
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Loving the micra story, priceless.

I knew someone who was driving his engine 90mph in second gear. Some people you can't teach.

Thing that i hate most is when someone will come on slagging peugeot off due to their cheapness in repairs and services. If you buy a second hand car, chances are there is at least one issue you have to deal with. Apparently the "unwashed masses" expect a £200 car to run perfectly...
 

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Since i got my first car ive learned everything i can from forums/books and taking it apart and looking.

Im one of those people who will check his oil on a weekly basis, walk around the car once a day checking all bulbs and tyres "look" "ok". But from being a bus driver and having to do morning inspections etc you get to know when something just doesnt look/feel right.

I will also do some minor work such as oil changes, filter changes, fluid top ups etc. but when it comes to more advanced things i dont trust myself with, such as brakes i will leave to a mate of mine (he also does my MOTs). However for bigger stuff such as timing belts etc i leave to dealer...no one better and you get parts warranty as well.

I do have the diagnostic tool for my car and did have for the peugeot and know a fair bit to get me going and armed with a bit of info so if the dealer tries to rip me off i know. if i wasnt too sure, i will ask either someone who i know or even on a forum. (everyday is a school day)

but i must admit i know a few people who are ignorant. Such as today, i notice an oil leak coming into the car park so i follow it and get the reg and surely enough a puddle under car. I go into work and trace owner, a fella i will add, i said mate it looks like you got an oil leak - i would get RAC or if company car ATS over and take a look...He says nah it will be fine, i will get someone to take a look at it on weekend... i was like its oil and he says "its not important" WTF!!! - to add further injury to insult he works for a transport company and tells others how to drive etc!
 

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so wen i come off my xjr later due to oil its his fault, Ar+ehole!!

Fluid leaks should be traced and sorted asap. You wouldn't have fluid leakin out your ass till the weekend without checkin it, same goes for any engine or mechanical equipment
 

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some interesting points in this thread but I have never worked for a car garage and only ever worked on my own cars or cars people bring to me to help them fix but I have learnt a lot and I believe I am a car enthusiast I now even get some car garages turning to me for help
 
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I've spent more time on the spanner the last week fixing all the Landies niggling problems, than I have done in years. Central locking, new lifters, new stereo suss why the LPG wasnt working, repair wiring to OSR light, repair and remount damaged headlamp, remove thermo-viscous fan and fit electric job, full service, new AFM, new leads, cap and rotor, and a leisurely afternoon rubbing down the bumpers to repaint. If I'd paid someone to do that it wouldn't be financially viable, probably as much as the cars worth, but I've now got a large, fast, well equipped off-roader thats ready for its next 100,000 miles, with change from £600 for the car and parts. Ding dong.
 
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