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Thread: My new locating car

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default My new locating car

    This is my new locate car. I bought it strictly for the gas mileage. My Van (at todays prices) was costing me 20 cents a mile in gas. I drive about 80 - 100 miles a day so you can see that my gas expenses were about 16 - 20 dollars a day. Yeah, that sucks. So, hopefully my new car will cut my costs in half. I should be saving 8 - 10 dollars a day. Nice.

    locategeo..jpg
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Moderator Goldenboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Looks nice. I'd just be afraid I'd get paint all over the interior. I've never worked out of a car because I need all the manhole equiptment for locating telephone but I can see alot of advantages to a car. Trucks have alot of blindspots and are bigger so trying to find parking in the city is hard.

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    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Can it jump curbs?
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


    It's better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On or Stood On and Pissed Off Of !


    The views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not reflect the views of my employer. or my wife , if that matters.

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    Member swagman's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Looks good steve ,I had an 04 chevy malibu Maxx,hatchback for about 4 years it had a v-6 in it and got 35 mpg ,just bought another ford escape ,they seem to hold up pretty good for our work 4 wheel drive for the area I cover works out great ,hope it does a good job for ya ,happy swaggin

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    My only equipment is a couple of locators, a paint stick, a box-o-paint, and a few misc. items. That's about it.

    My van was packed with crap. I would collect all sorts of stuff and it would sit in my van for months. Yard sale items, mostly. Now, I don't have room for it which is a GOOD thing.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Senior Member FailedSafetyAudit's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Is that a delorme street atlas GPS USB unit on your dashboard there? The little yellow thing?
    TRUST no one !!!
    QUESTION everything !!!
    Find the TRUTH for yourself !!!
    Sound a bit paranoid ???
    That's what this business is. - Don Lyng

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    Administrator TheCableVine's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    It is just that. It is an indispensable tool in my arsenal. without it I would be lost and it would take me twice as long to do my tickets.
    "Change does not always equal progress."

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    Moderator Goldenboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    But if you were lost just think how many more garage sales you'd get to pass by while trying to find your next locate.

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    Senior Member Dave72's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Where the heck do you put the manhole guard, cones, pump and hose ?
    Are you putting at least some kind of strobe light on it ?

    We dont do just locates, but still.. I cant think of not having at least my men working sign (esp when parked just over a hill etc.. really esp in the winter when its slippery) and some cones to help protect myself.
    The price of gas is one thing, for sure.. but keeping alive trumps that, dont it ?

    Otherwise, I agree though.. I sure keep alot of crap that I never use in my E-350 bucket truck.
    (May you live in interesting times)

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    Senior Member Wingfoot's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave72 View Post
    Where the heck do you put the manhole guard, cones, pump and hose ?
    Are you putting at least some kind of strobe light on it ?
    We dont do just locates, but still..
    The price of gas is one thing, for sure.. but keeping alive trumps that, dont it ?
    Hey Dave - Steve is a sub-contract locator that is blessed by not messing with telephone locates. He may be the smartest guy on the 'Vine; just sayin'.

    He is his own boss in many respects. I've seen one of Steve's videos of his typical work day and safety is first in his work ethic.

    Steve's work-car depreciation will be a SWEET tax write-off and his future Idaho gas tax refund checks will add to the sweetness.


    Hey Steve - Years ago I was a commission-only, outside salesman who sold welding rods to maintenance shops out of my own sub-compact car. I bought the car for the same reasons you bought your Geo. I carried a trunk full of heavy demo supplies that made the car squat bad in the rear.

    A few months into the gig, my sub-compact started to hop like a rabbit when the rear shock valving quit working due to the constant load. I replaced all 4 struts (heavy-duty valving rear, standard valving front) and installed new rear Moog Cargo Control Coil Springs.

    Steve, I can not impress strongly enough in words how these few items made my sub-compact perfect for the job. The ride height was level again and the ride quality was restored. Any local auto parts store (Advance Auto Parts, AutoZone, O'Reilly, NAPA, CARQUEST, etc) usually have the Moog variable rate springs on the shelf for just about any car; or can get them quickly.

    I like the car you bought. Will the fenders be straight on it a year from now? It kinda, sorta looks like you already rubbed up against something with the front bumper............ Hey, I'm just messing with ya. Luv Ya Man!

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

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    Senior Member sprayandpray's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Actually, since Ford Motor Engineers told a bunch of dealers at a meeting this month, that they were about to reveal a hybrid car that gets 500 miles per a single charge of it's batteries, I will wait for that one. Of course, I'm envious of any locator that doesn't have to carry 3 colors of paint, 7 different flags , manhole hook, blower and guard, etc., etc.
    I might not be as good as I once was, but I'm as good once as I ever was !


    It's better to be Pissed Off than Pissed On or Stood On and Pissed Off Of !


    The views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not reflect the views of my employer. or my wife , if that matters.

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    Senior Member Bad Robot's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    I do believe that Steve may well be the smartest man in the room, since he is running his own business. But I am really curious as to how this would work on a rough jobsite. Or do you mostly deal with residential areas Steve?

  13. #13
    Member FreedMan's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    Nice lookin' ride Steve. I worked out a car for about 18months a while back. It had a trunk rather than a hatchback, and for a guy over 6' tall it made my life miserable, but I can see what you mean with mileage. My fuel bill is an ongoing issue.

    Sub-contract locator, eh? We need to talk sometime, I'd be curious to find out how that works. Sometimes I actually miss having tickets, compared with several large projects each week. A little sub-contract locating might be good for the old soul. Be safe out there man.
    "You have enemies? Good! That means you've stood up for something sometime in your life." ~ Winston Churchill

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    Senior Member ProfessionalLocator's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    The cost of acquiring these small cars along with high gas mileage make these cars attractive to locate firms.

    I find there faults greater than their worth.

    First off there is the smaller tire size and less ground clearance. A locate vehicle must regularly drive over curbs and across construction sites and open fields. I know a fleet manager scratching his head wondering why so many of his cars require over $3,000 worth of repair because of front end collisions that lack any body panel damage. Repeatedly pushing these cars with their small diameter tires over curbs eventually causes the front end components to bend end in if they had hit the curb hard one time. The low ground clearance causes the bottom of the car to drag across whatever you are driving over.

    You will get paint all over the car, both the trunk and the interior. In winter paint must be stored in the interior to keep it from freezing. Long hot sticks have to be jammed into the interior and eventually scratching various parts of the interior.

    Cramming in the various large and awkward items also is rough on the interior.

    A production locator needs room for: several cases of paint, one for each color and a total amount that will last one week. All the locate receivers and transmitters, preferably kept inside so in winter the batteries do not freeze. Several traffic cones and a pedestrian barricade. Manhole hook and one of those nice to have manhole pullers. Room for a pump even if picked up from the shop if needed. Shovels and digging bar. (I have never been issued a shovel or digging bar but always kept some in the back of the truck). The list can go on.

    I find a small pickup truck is the practical minimum for this industry.

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    Senior Member Enjoythefall's Avatar
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    Default Re: My new locating car

    I think Steve knows best what will work for him. Getting it in your head that you know what's best for the industry is dangerous. There are a lot of things that are different for each and every locator in the business, and if you try to blanket every person's needs into one big pile, you turn into USIC.

    While your functional minimum might be a truck for all the gear, paint, and flags you have to carry... He may only have to carry half as much.

    Having said that, If I had my way, I'd be driving around a Subaru at work like I do at home... some of those wagons have TONS of space, and I wouldn't have to worry about getting stuck in the winter, which is a huge problem in whatever 2WD truck my boss decides to put me in.

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