Dry States in Australia like California?

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kafkaian
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Dry States in Australia like California?

Post by kafkaian » 18 Sep 2003, 16:30

This is really a question for Alan S but I would be grateful if anyone has any thoughts. During my stay in the States and especially California I noticed a plethora of beautifully kept vintage cars, from 60's/70's Beamers and Mercs to post war TBirds, Corvettes and VW Buggies and 80's Lamborghinis - all in everyday use. But what amazed me was that they all looked nearly brand new. Talking to many of the owners, most of them did little or no upkeep on the bodywork but instead expended most of their efforts "keeping the oil in". Of course the reason for all this lies in the fact that California is classed as a "dry state" and expels littlee into the atmosphere that would normally undermine the chassis and bodywork of similar cars over here.
Out of interest Alan, I wondered if there were similar areas of Australia where main conurbations benefit from this ideal climate? I know humidy probably reigns in Darwin whilst the South East is pretty temperate in nature (Melbourne etc). If so what a great place to bring up a DS or Traction Avant and keep those 70's, 80's and 90's models smokin'. [8D][8D][8D]
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Post by alan s » 18 Sep 2003, 17:09

Boy this one could get long & involved, so I'll try & keep it as short as possible.
Where I live, central Coast of Queensland which is known as a "sub Tropical" region, by rights should be very humid, hence very wet. It used to be prior to the droughts of the past 10 years or so. I'm about 4 hours drive south of the Tropic of Capricorn.
As an example, I can remember one April when we had 27 inches of rain; that's a bloody lot. I also got caught in a tropical downpour 8 years ago where 22 inches of rain fell in 1 hour 40 minutes....that was getting a bit scarey too; following trucks to get through flood waters, it took over 12 hours to travel 350 klms.
Humidity can be in the region of 80% - 95% the majority of the time in summer, however, if I drive approx 2 hours west, I hit the more arid region where the humidity is almost non existent. It's referred to as "dry" heat and whilst we have to have air/con in our bedrooms to be able to sleep at night and at times to even exist during the day, in the areas where the heat is dry, they can use evaporative coolers (water cooled) or just swatting bloody fles gives enough draught to keep it liveable.
It's in those types of places where cars don't rust. The downside is of course, that with modern cars being predominantly plastic, and the plastic used on interiors isn't usually all that UV resistent, that whilst they may not rust, they do tend to turn to dust internally if this isn't looked after and protected and believe me it is annoying; "I'll just pull this stip off" KEeeerrrraaack!!! and disintigrates in your hands. This to a point is partially alleviated by most houses having either a lock up garage or carport to protect the 'family pet.' I personally have a garage that is 40 foot long by 30 foot wide is drive through on one side and has a car port (lean to) about 15 foot long by 8 foot wide out the back. In a regional/rural area such as the one I live in, that's not all that uncommon and isn't being a "show pony" but is almost essential as everything has to be protected from the harsh sun which is now regarded as the most destructive in the World due to the hole in the Ozone layer.
As regards the *best* places for keeping cars, I'd suggest the area around Tamworth, Armidale, Gunnedah on the New South Wales tablelands and the Darling Downs in Queensland. Toowoomba on the Darling Downs has red volcanic soil and a temperate climate without the humidity & sea air problems that we on the Coast have to contend with and has been renowned for generations as <b>THE PLACE</b>to buy a car from as regards rust and general upkeep.
Years ago, this City was mainly inhabited with retired Wheat Farmers who were well heeled and didn't ever drive too far; just stayed home looking after their lawns and their cars whilst checking on their investments. It's grown up a bit now, still a nice place & still the same kind of climate.
The problem with any place in Australia though as regards French Cars is that they have never been sold in numbers even in the major cities and hence some of the Country Towns don't even have a fully fledged dealer although some of this has changed in more recent times, but this is not a real big help to anyone looking for something like a D or a Traction.
Alan S
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Post by kafkaian » 18 Sep 2003, 17:22

Thanks for the effort Alan. Most enlightening. You've got me bringing up my world atlas.[;)]
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alan s
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Post by alan s » 18 Sep 2003, 17:57

Here's the local paper from Toowoomba just out of interests sake.
If you scroll down, you'll find an article on motoring which talks about a car that was actually built in Toowoomba 100 years ago.
Shows the old Town has always been a bit big in the Auto scene.
Play arund with the index & the Classified ads should be there somewhere (possibly under "Checkout classifieds")
http://www.thechronicle.com.au/data/current_news.html
Also, whilst you've got the Atlas out, scroll down to the map & click onto the red dots on the map & you'll see what a dry hole this joint is these days.
http://mirror.bom.gov.au/weather/radar/
Alan S [:p]
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Post by kafkaian » 18 Sep 2003, 18:06

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by alans</i>

.....which talks about a car that was actually built in Toowoomba 100 years ago.
Alan S [:p]
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote"><font size="2">So this brings me to another question - and please forgive my ignorance here, but "built in Toowomba"?
Does this mean Australia manufactured cars then? Now I am intrigued and brings me to this; what, in terms of car production, has Australia produced over the years whether it be re-assembled kits, full production cars or part assembly franchises? What production lines are currently running? Is there a chronological summary of this somewhere on the web?</font id="size2">
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alan s
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Post by alan s » 18 Sep 2003, 18:46

Strangely enough, this place has been to the forefront of a lot of motor car production & development.
We have produced the Holden (General Motors) since 1948, most of the pre-war yank stuff was built with Fisher Bodies out here, we export Mitsubishis to South Africa, Asia & the US, were the only ones to stick with the V8 when the rest of the World shied off them a few years ago, build Toyotas here & have been assembling Toyotas since about 1969, had a Nissan assembly line here as well as a BMC factory just prior to their demise, have a Ford factory here for donkey's years, manufacture & supply engines to Korea for certain model Daewoos.
In the past they had such "gems" as the Lightburn Zeta; Lightburn was a company that made cement mixers & branched out into cars...tiny little I think it was a twin cylinder 2 stroke, made the Goggomobile Dart and so it goes on. In the past we've had Lloyd Hartnetts, Simca even Mercedes were assembled here for a while.
Here's a link that hopefully could lead you somewhere with the car business.
http://www.autopages.com.au/ap.php?u=ap-sql&category=carma&state=
We even have our own Motor racing Marque that races exclusively Aussie made & developed V8s and are they quick.
If you have broadband you can watch on the 'puter, otherwise I think they can be seen on your Channel 5 but with he time lag, they're possibly racing while you guys are sleeping, but real exciting stuff.
http://www.v8supercars.com.au/
Have fun & enjoy.
Alan S
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Post by UFO » 18 Sep 2003, 18:55

Would you like to ask an easier question? Like, "What is the meaning of life?"
Lots of cars have been built from CKD here, including Peugeots (504s mostly I think) and even around 1400 Cit DS at one stage.
It may also interest you that GM builds well over 600 000 engines per year that are exported from Aus to Europe and installed in what we refer to as the Astras and Vectras - Opel/Vauxhaul models. The irony is that we then but back the built car with our engines in them.
We also send Toyota Camrys and Holden Commodores and Statemans to Saudi Arabia and the Holden Monaro to the US (with a US made engine in it!!)
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Post by kafkaian » 18 Sep 2003, 19:49

Thanks fellas, a hole in my ignorance layer has been filled. Keep up the production work it's great stuff!!
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Post by DoubleChevron » 26 Sep 2003, 05:31

Hmm,
Remind me to take some photos of the inside of my BX sometime for you. My Series II CX's dash started cracking within 12months of it hitting the Aussie shores ... Yeah, cars don't rust, but plastic DOES turn to dust rappidly. If you want a paint finish (not important) or plastic (expensive, not readily replacable ... --Important) to last. The vehicle MUST be kept under shelter!!
Old cars made with this stange product called *metal* last quite well out here. If they get left in the open for to many years, the paint burns off, and they start rusting from lack of paint.
seeya,
Shane L.
PS: It has been mentioned that they built Citroen ID19's out here for a short period of time?
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Post by kafkaian » 26 Sep 2003, 14:55

Thanks for this Shane. You say "out here". But where is out here? If out here is in you sub-tropical/temperate zones then is this necessarily the case? It is interesting that both you and Alan have stressed the importance of getting cars out of the sun due to Vinyl/plastic fatigue. I must admit the same seems to apply to Californian cars.
When I was staying with a software engineer in Palo Alto (Silicon Valley) his 20 year old Beamer Covertible went straight into the "g'rarge" (via an auto garage door opener - tch we English are so backward ;-)**) WITHOUT fail, whilst his partner's 25 year old Merc was left to "die" with VERY stressed and stinking leather trim inside whilst the black paintwork was "different".
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