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socaldmax

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socaldmax last won the day on August 12

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About socaldmax

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    "Captain of the Brotherhood"
  • Birthday 03/08/1960

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    Santee, CA

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  1. Just before I bought my sand rail I was riding my quad and rode up on a small lip that various people were launching off of. Some of the rails were well built, but one rail was a home built and it had been converted from a beam car to an a-arm car. It had fairly wide, thin looking arms that had obviously been copied from another brand. The two guys in the car got in line and jumped off the lip. The front suspension collapsed like toothpicks and the car flipped forward and landed on it's roof. It had no roof on it and it immediately sank into the sand. The 2 guys were drowning in the sand and so busy trying to get the sand out of their faces they couldn't even try to unbuckle and get out. A bunch of us ran over and a few people tried to dig them out, I told them they were just digging the car deeper, we needed to flip the car back on it's wheels. A few of us grabbed the driver's side and flipped it right over. They wiped the sand off of their faces and finally got unbuckled. By now, there is a large group standing around talking about it and the most common comments were, "I had no idea the front suspension would fold up like that!" and "I had no idea the car would sink into the sand so fast, it was like they were drowning under the sand!" At that time I didn't know much about sand rails, but I did think the front a-arms were too thin and way too long, I thought they would break, which is why I want to stay and watch them jump, to see how bad they folded up. They were a lot worse than I even suspected. The sandrail sinking under the sand is something that I didn't suspect, I was totally surprised how quickly it sank. The point is, the vast majority of people don't know how to properly build a very safe sandrail, including me and probably 95% of the witnesses of the incident at that time. I know a lot more now and I still would not attempt to build a sandrail from scratch. It's the same reason I don't build my street car, I think Toyota does a much better job of it. That's the reason I suggest people buy a completely built used car. Not a project car that someone else quit and put in the corner. Sure, sometimes they run out of money, but a lot of the time they got to a point in the project where they realized it has a lot of serious design flaws and they decided to get out of it and buy something safer. If someone who lived fairly close asked me to go look at a bare chassis with him, the first thing I'd ask is what brand is it. If It's not a brand I'd trust, I'd tell them to forget it. There are even 3 or 4 brands that were turnkey brands that I wouldn't buy due to poor design. I truly think they're unsafe to drive and I wouldn't recommend them to anyone. As Hondo said above, priority #1 is safety, then #2 is safety. Why take a chance on figuring out all of the little details that make a difference when you can rely on someone's professional expertise and years of experience.
  2. No to mention a max speed of about 18 mph...
  3. When I was a kid, I had to maintain my bike and build my skateboards myself. My stepdad wasn't going to do it and I eventually did all of the house repairs also. He did bring home interesting parts from torpedos like electric motors, big batteries, reduction gears, etc so I learned how to build stuff on my own. In high school I took all AP classes, no shop classes, so that was no influence on me. I think a return to vocational classes would help the population in general, even though I didn't take any. I learned it all out of necessity and through looking things up.
  4. I see what you're getting at. There are various levels of knowledge and even being able to assemble parts on a chassis isn't enough to build a good sand rail. I bought my sand rail used and luckily, got a very good quality chassis. I brought a professional welder with me to verify the quality of the welds. He gave them excellent marks, but there was so much more than that included that I got very lucky to get. I've seen everything from RFRs all the way to Geiser Bros trophy trucks and everything in between. On a lot of the better vehicles, there are design decisions made that affect anti-squat, ant-dive, Ackerman, braking efficiency, chassis strength, etc etc that I can't answer even after studying them for the last 15 yrs. My advice to people is to always buy a quality used sand rail. It will be better than most people can build and cheaper to boot. You can always learn how to maintain it, but you're not going to build a great quality car on your own the first time out. However, if someone ignores my (and plenty of others) advice and tries to build their own from scratch, there isn't much I can do about it. Hopefully they get plenty of good advice from others and follow it. I've seen some suggestions that were suboptimal IMHO, but in order to keep costs down I understand it. I prefer not to cut corners in some areas but that's a matter of opinion. It's worked on plenty of other sand rails.
  5. socaldmax

    Ghosts

    I've never had any ghostly experiences, but that doesn't mean that I doubt their existence. I think they do exist, I just haven't seen any personally.
  6. Finally, someone in the media with some common sense. I wonder why this sounds so familiar?
  7. That will probably end up being 15 min of her looking into the lens wondering if it was on, followed by another 20 min of video closeup of the sheets with her asking, "Is it in yet? Are you sure I can't get pregnant from anal?"
  8. baby mama or baby daddy - let's get real. the ho had a bastard kid. Don't waste any lipstick on that pig. She's not Mother Theresa by any measure. The "father" isn't any better. I scaled it - the verb is "weighed." A scale is a device used to weigh things.
  9. not as of yet... not yet works fine, the former makes you sound like you're pretending to be educated. For some reason, I notice news anchors using it more than most people. he never ceases to amaze me... really? A double negative? How about, "He's amazing!" or "He always amazes me!" He's a badass! Doesn't really say anything. Ask 100 people what badass is, and you'll get 120 definitions. He's cool! What makes him cool? Can you define cool? Aside from the uber trendy haircut, clothes and sullen attitude, what has he accomplished in life? Oh, that's right, you guys invented being a teen! I'll hook you up bro! - or - I'll take care of you bro! That means "I want this sucker to think I'm gonna knock $400 off of this $1200 invoice for 2 hrs of labor, but I'll take off $10 and make him too embarrassed to ask for more." Hit me up! OK, I'll use a hammer. Catch me on Insta! Uh, yeah, I'll totally catch ya bro! I really don't mind if people use the latest slang, but when they re-define words to twist the facts, I'm not too thrilled with that. Racist = someone who just won an argument with a Libtard and that's the grenade the Libtard tosses just before his head explodes. Nationalist - that's someone who loves their country, like a patriot. Don't try to conflate that with white supremacists. Misogynist, xenophobe, anti-immigrationist, white supremacist, alt-right, Islamophobe, all of those equal Trump supporter.
  10. aight Bro! Dude! I could care less New to me intense and purposes axe him like...... umm.....like.....like
  11. I love helping people out, but as much as that's gratifying, I have to keep in mind the limits of my knowledge. For example, I know what good TIG welds look like, but I'm not the guy to tell anyone how it's done, or what to do to improve the welds. Same thing with chassis design. I know good triangulation when I see it, I could probably add some cross bracing to a pic and it would be correct, but I've seen some bracing on cars that was better than average or anything I could suggest, like how some builders do their front bulkhead or how they mount the power steering with minimal tubing, yet with absolutely no flex. For that kind of stuff, I leave that to actual fab guys who know a lot more than I do. I absorb everything I've read or heard, but that still doesn't compete with a builder's experience. My specialty is diagnostics, electrical and electronics, why doesn't this circuit work and how to fix it. The challenge is diagnosing it remotely, which is something I also did as a defense contractor. I've even had to tell a technician that he had his test equipment set up wrong from 2500 mi away, based on the messed up waveform he was telling me he was seeing. One thing I've learned the hard way - never trust test equipment you borrowed or even the electricity in the wall socket unless you verified it yourself. I've even seen o'scopes that were allegedly calibrated a week or two before that weren't accurate enough for our needs. Fortunately, even a Harbor Fright DMM is good enough for RV or sand rail use.
  12. Sometimes people don't put 2+2 together. For example, after a couple of yrs without any CV problems, I suddenly started breaking stars and cages and had to replace a few out in the dunes, no fun for anyone. I knew that limit straps stretch, but it didn't dawn on me that MY limit straps had stretched! Of course even though I had adjustable clevises on them, I was at the limit, so I had to buy new limit straps and start all over at the other end of the adjustment range. Another time, my alternator would stop charging, but it seemed to only happen at St Anthony's. I bought a couple more alternators and kept swapping them out and they all tested fine, max. current, but for some reason I'd run my battery down on long dune runs, only up in St. Anthony's. I finally dug deeper into it and found out the original owner had never put in a resistor or charging light in the circuit, so none of the alternators were charging properly. My theory is since I was at higher altitude and losing power due to that, plus much longer, higher speed runs, there was a higher heat load and the fans were running much more, drawing more power than the alternators were putting out intermittently. Once I added a small 150 ohm resistor in the harness, the problem was solved. In the process, I found a lot of interesting answers on the net, including sand possibly getting into the brushes and preventing them from making good contact, which I thought was an interesting possibility, considering the alt is down low near the rear tire.
  13. I stll get a good laugh out of those posters who give expert advice on everything from RVs and SxS to sand rail chassis design, even though they've never designed or owned anything.

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