Tuesday, November 17, 2009

High-rise. Low-rise. Why???

So you own a car. Or a pick-up. And you figure your wheels could be improved. New paint job, maybe. A better hi-fi (heaven help us!) A locker for expensive gear. A power winch to get down into a small canyon or out of a mud hole. These are things I, a pedestrian, can understand.

But what I don't get are all those high-rise (above) and those low-rise (below) vehicle modifications. Exactly what do they get you, except, maybe envy from fellow louts?

Take the high-rise pick-up. More road clearance, a plus on unpaved mountain trails? Nope, if you look closely, you'll note that the differential is actually quite low, quite likely to get hung up on the center of a deeply rutted outback road. Apparently these vehicles haven't been modified for the boonies. So: what's the big deal? (Need I mention that a stereo with loud, booming base appears to be an auxiliary part of a high-rise pickup...)

Then we have the low-rise machine, truly a city phenomenon. As someone who loves the back country mountain roads, I keep envisioning one of these cars motoring up the bumpy, rocky road to the Copper Basin overlook. As. If. (And, as long as I am whinging, why, why, why, ruin the lines of a lovely antique automobile?)

The epitome of a low-rise job. I wonder if this street rod can even make it over a speed bump without ruining that lovingly polished paint job. It certainly wouldn't make it up Demerse Street these days, would it?

Off-the-Wall Links: Surely you've been wondering what how fractals look in 3-D. You know you have. Here's a place to get a few views. How about the domino world record? Two and a half hours for the last domino to be pushed over. I 'm fascinated by volcanoes and found this gorgeous picture of a recent eruption in the Russian Kuril Islands. And to think, the new word of the year comes from the burgeoning social web: the verb, unfriend, which has been added to the New Oxford American Dictionary.


Antipodean Curmudgeon said...

I reckon it all has to do with 'machismo' and'coolness', both of which are hard to define, much less justify. It does keep the owners/afficionados off the grog for a bit.


occupation of independence said...

Doesn't Prescott have noise ordinances against boom cars?

It seems like there is a law about everything these days. I'm waiting a new law about something that actually does some good.

Steve said...

Lots of interesting rides. Some of them would be a good hobby for someone with money, time, and ability to fix them up.

Steve said...

I should have mentioned that I have the time, but not the money or the ability. Or the interest.

Granny J said...

bro -- well,these modifications are about as useful as baggy pants hanging just above one's privates, so I guess you must be right.

boonie -- don't think we have such a law, though I suppose there's disturbing the peace. But, please, I don't think we need any new laws.

steve -- an expensive hobby, at that! Being of the female persuasion, I can think of lots of more interesting avocations than hi-rise and lo-rise autos.

Ric said...

I can't speak to low-riders; I was too young when everyone was chopping down the roofs of their vehicles until the windows were nothing but gun-slits and too old when the Hispanic low-riders finally worked their way up to Flint, Michigan. But the reason for lifting a truck body off the frame (which, as you pointed out, leaves the differential at exactly the same level as a stock truck) it to allow giant off-road tires to be mounted on the vehicle. Those are too expensive to burn up running them on pavement (not to mention making the truck loud, hard to steer, bouncy, etc.), hence the silly baby tires on the big, macho jacked-up trucks.

Of course, I'm willing to bet that at least half those trucks have never been driven off the pavement, but that's been covered by previous comments.

Granny J said...

thanks, ric, for your explanation of the hi-rise trucks; makes a lot of sense, except that I would expect that those louts spend a lot of money to get their pickups jacked up in the first place. And when it comes to getting around in the boonies, my late husband & I did quite well, thank you, in our Sube station wagon. I'm talking almost all of those double dotted lines on the topo maps, for example.

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