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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

What are you driving? v.3.0: The Final Chapter (I hope)
Ron Erdrich, Photographer
Abilene | TX | USA | Posted: 12:53 AM on 04.26.06
->> I don't think this thread will last much longer than this, but I did want to put in a word about safety equipment. I'm driving a new Hyundai Tucson that my company bought and I saw a report on cable about Hyundai's safety measures and I have to say I was pretty impressed. My company did alright in buying this car.

I don't know about you guys, but I see, and avoid, some pretty freakish drivers out there. As a matter of fact, it was an old lady that killed my last staff car by looking at me and then pulling out anyways. Thank God for airbags, though the reporter I was with is still suffering from that mid-February accident.

Think about gas mileage and storage space but think about the level of protection the vehicle offers as well. If you're a news photographer, you go places and drive in conditions that sane people avoid.

-Ron-
 This post is:  Informative (2) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Nik Habicht, Photographer
Trenton | NJ | USA | Posted: 6:29 PM on 04.26.06
->> And that's the number one reason I drive a Chevy Tahoe every day. Yes, it's big and not fuel efficient. But I'm larger than average, and the Tahoe, and the Ford Crown Victoria are about the only two cars where my shoulder isn't jammed into the door jamb. I've actually got space for the side airbags to deploy in the event of a collision....
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Dave Prelosky, Photographer
Lower Burrell | Pa | US | Posted: 10:34 PM on 04.26.06
->> To second Ron,
I've been driving the Tuscon model since Thanksgiving 2005. A kindly citizen tried driving over the hood one night - 3 weeks and 2k miles into my first car - and my daughter and I walked away.
Great lesson for a 16 yr old to have - excess speed + loss of control = accident.
Unit #2 now has 44k fault free miles on it.
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Jason Miczek, Photographer
Charlotte | NC | USA | Posted: 12:10 AM on 04.27.06
->> 1999 GMC Envoy. Rarest SUV on the road in my opinion. GMC sold very few of these. I'm not "tooting" my own horn, because that year it received the the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's worst rating for roll-overs. It's not like the Envoys you see all over the road these days. It looks like a souped-up GMC Jimmy. I like it for all the various reasons (4X4, plenty of room, heated seats, air compressor), except I've spend thousands of dollars maintaining and fixing it. But, so far, so good--it's paid for, which is the sole reason a freelancer like me loves his ride.
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Worth Canoy, Photographer
High Point | NC | USA | Posted: 9:02 AM on 04.27.06
->> I drive (usually to work in) a 2002 Ford Expedition.
Lots of room for me and cases of equipment and luggage, large and safe.
Sure the fuel usage is bad, but you give a little to get a little.
The studio also owns a Honda Civic, which I use for commuting, just to save fuel.

Hey, if the prices keep up, does anyone know of a bag or case company that sells camera cases we can strap onto a Bicycle?

(by the way, don't buy Exxon/Mobile)
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Marcus Marter, Photographer
South Bend | IN | United States | Posted: 10:57 PM on 04.29.06
->> 2005 Chevy Impala with 20in wheels and switches.....real professional...

MLM
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Matthew Charles Whitcher, Photographer
New York | NY | USA | Posted: 2:55 PM on 04.30.06
->> Can I just tell you how hard it is to cram all my photo gear into a 2006 Mitsu Eclipse?
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Joel Strickland, Photographer
Melbourne | Victoria | Australia | Posted: 1:00 AM on 05.02.06
->> I Drive a Subaru WRX and it gets me buy, but i did have Subaru Outback as loaner the other day whilst mine was in for service and that was awesome with the boot space.
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Richard Uhlhorn, Photographer
Chelan Falls | WA | USA | Posted: 1:45 AM on 05.02.06
->> Still driving my 1995 Jeep Wrangler. Not the best vehicle for a photographer, but it gets me into the mountains.

My Subaru Outback, when my significant other isn't using it, is the perfect vehicle for a photographer. Plenty of covered storage space and decent mileage (25mpg on the road) and about 18 around town.
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Zac Pagett, Student/Intern, Photographer
Lake Worth | FL | USA | Posted: 4:16 AM on 05.02.06
->> I love my Tahoe, for all the previously stated reasons.. but now that I live in sunny south florida... I'm really thinking about getting a Wrangler... something I can take the top off of and cruise... how bad of an idea is this for a photographer...
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Eric Jones, Photographer
Greenville | NC | USA | Posted: 6:50 AM on 05.02.06
->> When you run out of gas you can always fly...

http://www.sportsshooter.com/jonesek/wings/
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Chris Jennings, Photographer
Sherman | TX | USA | Posted: 8:10 AM on 05.02.06
->> 1978 R100 BMW motorcycle that gets 40 mpg and a 1993 Kawasaki KLR 650 that gets 50 mpg. I'm thinking about trading the KLR for street legal DR350 with a big bore kit on it though.
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Dave Chidley, Photographer
London | Ontario | Canada | Posted: 8:38 AM on 05.02.06
->> On my 5th Subaru, I'm driving a 97 Outback with almost 300,000 kilometers, what more can I say?

As Joel says, plenty of room for gear, great reliablity and safety records and all-wheel drive for the white stuff on the roads we get in Canada.

They are the greatest "photo car"
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Brent Drinkut, Photographer
Frankfort | IN | USA | Posted: 10:01 AM on 05.02.06
->> I have an 88 Toyota Corolla hatchback. Affectionately known as the fish tank since it is blue and has nothing but windows. Its small and I can park just about anywhere. If I throw the back seats down I have plenty of room for everything. Considering bumping up to Matrix when this one dies in about a year (hopefully not sooner). I've put 100,000 miles on in my 5years of having it and it just keeps chugging along.
 This post is:  Informative (0) | Funny (0) | Huh? (0) | Off Topic (0) | Inappropriate (0) |   Definitions

Trevor Little, Student/Intern, Photographer
Peterborough | On | Canada | Posted: 11:27 AM on 05.02.06
->> yeah I have a '97 Toyota Tercel 2dr. Sucks for storing camera gear, no security, and if I were to crash into any of you guys driving an SUV I would probably die.
However it is great on gas (35mpg) and cheap on repairs. Rolled over to 245,000kms yesterday and it still runs great. Low profile vehicle so noone would think $15k worth of camera gear would be in it.
And it cost less than my D2h.
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Kent Opdahl, Photographer
Urbandale | IA | USA | Posted: 11:31 AM on 05.02.06
->> 2004 GMC Yukon XL. I have been using E85 gas in it and it's $.30 a gallon cheaper. Sure does help when it holds 33 gallons.
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Tim Tadder, Photographer
San Diego | CA | USA | Posted: 11:50 AM on 05.02.06
->> 2005 touareg
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Chris Peterson, Photographer, Photo Editor
Columbia Falls | MT | USA | Posted: 11:04 PM on 05.04.06
->> Toyota 4 x4 ext. cab 4 cylinder Tacoma PU. Fits all your crap, always starts, and will go up any half-assed road in the state of Montana. Plus gets 24 mpg with the hubs unlocked.
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Chris Doane, Photographer
. | CO | USA | Posted: 1:52 AM on 05.09.06
->> '05 Aston Martin V8 Vantage.
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Ryan Scott, Photographer
Ballwin | MO | USA | Posted: 1:38 PM on 05.09.06
->> Forget gas mileage ... and emissions :)

I'm driving a 1993 Mazda RX-7 with tons of mods, single Garret GT35R turbo, 436 horsepower at the rear wheels. What's the point of going somewhere if you can't have fun doing it?
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Chris Viola, Photographer
Brunswick | ga | usa | Posted: 5:00 PM on 05.09.06
->> 2004 Mazda 3 hatchback.
I am never driving anything that isnt a hatchback, ever.
Plus it's nice and red. Easy to find in the parking lot.
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Jason Orth, Photographer
Lincoln | NE | USA | Posted: 5:21 PM on 05.09.06
->> I guess I'll talk about my hooptie: rollin, tailpipe-draggin, heat don't work and the girl keeps naggin. 69 Buick, deuce keeps rollin, one hubcap 'cuz three got stolen.

I've gotta roll this bucket 'cause my Benz is in the shop.
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Kyle Carter, Photographer
Meridian | MS | USA | Posted: 5:59 PM on 05.09.06
->> 2005 Ford Mustang, black - cops know me well - I'm glad.....KC
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Michel Fortier, Photographer
Naples | FL | USA | Posted: 7:11 PM on 05.09.06
->> Ryan! I "did" drive a 1995 RX-7 with a GT40 and a $7K fully race prepped engine daily. Gas prices got a bit too high and I was putting obscene mileage on her so I bought a "daily driver", a 2005 Mitsubishi Evo VIII. AWD, decent hp, incredible handling and brakes. Fuel economy isn't too bad and the trunk is huge. Still loads of fun to drive, even in poor weather, and theoretically, you could even take the car off road. Almost the perfect PJ's car and it'll beat a new Porsche Carrera C4 from 0-100 and back. I have an Isuzu Vehicross which might actually fit that bill except the wife stole it from me plus the gas mileage, like most SUV's, isn't spectacular. If we only had E85 in Florida. But it's a tank and virtually bulletproof while handling well and taking lots of abuse on and off road.

In 2000, I t-boned someone's grandmother who made an illegal left-hand turn in front of me. Two surgeries put me out for months on end and I probably lost a good year and a half, two years as a capable shooter. I spent the next two years adapting my shooting style trying to keep the chronic pain I had at bay and get back into the groove of actually being a decent photographer. It was and still is a daily struggle for me. I prefer smaller cars that handle better but sometimes, there's a longing to drive a tank and keep myself in one piece. I attend lots of track day events and I've really honed my skills as a driver, not only for the fun of it, but for the safety as well. Those of us working for daily papers drive a considerable amount compared to the average person. The odds are stacked against us, especially if you live in a "senior-oriented" community like I do. One really needs to be careful out there.
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Jody Gomez, Photographer
Murrieta | CA | USA | Posted: 3:18 AM on 05.10.06
->> "Hey, if the prices keep up, does anyone know of a bag or case company that sells camera cases we can strap onto a Bicycle?"


I wonder if the little plastic basket I had on my yellow banana seat bike would work?
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Chris Rutsch, Photographer
Forestville | CT | USA | Posted: 9:36 AM on 05.10.06
->> The final chapter? I'll bite...

2005 Scion xA 2.0 -- great little car, great gas mileage.
1998 BMW Z3 2.8 -- cool car, sub-par gas mileage.
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Ryan Scott, Photographer
Ballwin | MO | USA | Posted: 10:20 AM on 05.10.06
->> Hey Michael, I've driven a couple 13B's with GT40's ... very potent combo. One I drove from NY had a bridge-port and 35psi, pushing about 675 rwhp on the street. That was nuts to say the least.

My RX-7 gets about 22-23mpg when I keep my foot out of it. I'm using a Wolf ECU that has enough resolution to run clean and safe on the highway, unlike the PowerFC most people use. It runs so clean, the tailpipe looks like the tip of a spark-plug, not black suit like you usually see. I also have a map for E85. Just the touch of a button and I can run it, and E85 seems to be a lot more detonation resistant.

Evo's are nice, but they're just so ugly. I wouldn't drive a RX-7 though if I drove more. I work from home, so I don't put many miles on it. But you're right, I'm more worried about safety than I was 10 years ago :) Of course, when I need a safer highway driver, I'll get a RX-8 and turbo it ... for me, it's no rotor no motor.
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Michael Granse, Photographer
Urbana | IL | USA | Posted: 10:23 AM on 05.10.06
->> I use a 1994 Honda Accord EX for almost everything that I do. The trunk is big enough to hold a large rolling case (case holds four White Lightning X1600's, remotes, cables, power cords, extension cords, etc) and my Tamrac Pro-12 bag, and a few other odds and ends.

The bags that contain my light stands, background stands, and backgrounds fit nicely into the back-seat floorboard, and these are in the car most of the time.

One of the things that I realy like about this car is that there is a lock for the lever that opens the trunk and another lock for the mechanism that folds the back seat down for access to the trunk. My car was broken into once with LOTS of gear in the trunk. The thief made off with about $4.93 in change, an old Palm Pilot, and a couple of CD's but was NOT able to get into the trunk. I'm sure that if a more talented burglar came along they would be able to figure a way into the trunk (or my house, for that matter), but for the average "random street crime" I feel pretty good about the existing system.

I also have a 2002 Kia Sedona minvan and the middle and rear seating rows are on quick release levers for easy removal. With these seats removed, there is a lot of cargo space in the back but I rarely need more space than what the Honda Accord provides.
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Andrew Villa, Student/Intern, Photographer
Dublin | CA | United States | Posted: 1:48 AM on 05.16.06
->> 1994 VW Golf

Works well for getting some equipment around, but I have a hard time transporting strobes in such a small car.
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Robert Klein, Photographer
South Easton | MA | USA | Posted: 7:02 AM on 05.16.06
->> 2005 Honda Ellement...great for storing gear and getting through all kinds of weather...would like a tiny bit better gas mileage, but given that the vehicle saved me from serious injury when I became the sandwich in a three car accident due to inattentiveness by a kid driving an Audi S4, I have no complaints...have put 23,000 miles on it since July 22, 2005...the sound system is second to none imho...
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Max Gersh, Student/Intern
Louisville | KY | USA | Posted: 7:33 AM on 05.16.06
->> I drive a 1989 Toyota Camry. I got about 4 years ago with 35k miles on it. Thank god for old people that dont drive their cars often. It gets great mileage. What makes it extra special is that I keep a $2,000 soundsystem in it along with my $10k of camera gear when i'm working. The CB radio antenna and the spinner hub caps turn people off from the car even more. I have never had a security issue since I've had it. :-)

-Max-
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Nathan Simpson, Photographer
Huntington Beach | CA | USA | Posted: 2:45 PM on 05.16.06
->> 2003 ford ranger V6 5-speed, with 32 BFGs. great truck it gets me almost any wear I want to go, some times places that I dont want to go it is ok on gas but not that good. I have a hard teanu flat top shell for the bed, so there is plenty of room for gear, and it is like a vault when locked up, so I dont worry about it while I am in the market.
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Vinny Tennis, Photographer
New Holland | PA | USA | Posted: 9:15 PM on 05.16.06
->> 1994 Isuzu Rodeo LS with 176,302 miles. Gets about 18 mpg, so I am thinking about getting a scooter. I really like the Baron Retro but will probably end up with a Stella. I will save $200 dollars every 1000 miles( thats at $3/gallon ) and save 50 gallons of gas. A friend of mine has one and says he puts in $4 of gas every 10 days. At a redlight last Saturday when he was out running errands, a SUV pulled up next to him and he realized that the SUV will burn more gas in one hour than he will the next week. WOW, makes you stop and think.

Take care,

Vinny
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Matt Strasen, Photographer
Stillwater | OK | USA | Posted: 3:43 AM on 05.17.06
->> Does anyone have the new (2005-2006) Kia Sportage? I really liked the v6 when I test drove it today, gas mileage seems pretty good for an SUV....just wanted to get some opinions.
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Thread Title: What are you driving? v.3.0: The Final Chapter (I hope)
Thread Started By: Ron Erdrich
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