Posts Tagged ‘smog’

So This Is What a Temperature Inversion Layer Looks Like – Welcome to Los Angeles, Cough Cough

Friday, August 17th, 2012

Here’s the View from Seat 6AAugust 2012 Over a Trapped Layer of LA Smog:

Click to expand

Wow.

I want to live in los angeles
Not the one in los angeles
No, not the one in south california
The got one in south patagonia

Can Your Aging Mercedes Leave a Trail of Blue Smoke a Hundred Yards Long? Well, THIS One Can!

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

[UPDATE: This might be a gasoline-powered 230S, if that’s even possible. My bad. If anybody in town has an unusual euro-only Mercedes, it’s this guy. It might even have a manual transmission.]

Old Mercedes diesels* might be really slow, and they might emit more particulates than a fleet of new cars, and they might get converted to run on french fry grease, but…

The most cartoonish cloud of smoke coming from a car exhaust I’ve ever seen:

Click to expand

…they will never die. 

And here’s the thing – old diesels are exempt from California’s annual smog check program.

That’s a giant loophole big enough that you could drive a big old honking Mercedes Benz diesel through.

Hurray!

I’ve only been a Benz owner for less than a year now. However, I’m beginning to think that stamping out smoke on these 616s is like trying to rid your yard comletely of dandelions – it’s a fool’s errand.

I’ve had my IP rebuilt, rolled in a new timing chain, and had the valve seals replaced all within the last 6 months. Injectors are also new and the valves were adjusted when the seals were replaced. Fuel filters and fuel lines are also new and all fluids are fresh. The only differences between mine and yours are that I have lower compression and I use perhaps a 1/2 quart of oil in 2,000 miles.

Despite this, I still have some smoke. There’s a hint of whitish smoke on cold idle at start up and a bit of black smoke when I get on the throttle or climb steep hills.

I have another set of injectors that I had rebuilt and will install them in due course. I’ll also rebuild the vacuum pump as a preventative measure. But after that, this game of “whack a mole” has to end.

There is one good thing to come from all this work, however. My engine sounds silky smooth. No knocking, no nailing, and no hicccups. The only underhood sounds you hear are the clickity click of fuel injectors popping and the combustion inside the engine. So long as this continues to be the case and my oil consumption doesn’t increase, I should consider everything else to be inconsequential.”

*Pray that this particular old Mercedes is a diesel. ‘Cause otherwise this rig prolly needs to get oil added on a daily basis…

The Presidio’s Walt Disney Family Museum Celebrates the 55th Anniversary of Disneyland

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

Our Walt Disney Family Museum just celebrated the 55th Anniversary of the opening of Disneyland, from way back in July 1955. To mark the occasion they held a three-day star-studded extravaganza up in the Presidio.  

Yes, the Disney Family Museum is in the northern part of San Francisco. Check it: FaceBook / YouTube / Twitter / WDFM Blog

Anyway, the place was awash with rabid Disney fans, with some of them talking about their memories of Opening Day despite the fact that they didn’t look older than 55.

So, just what you’d expect, an extensive recap from a fan, here it is at Jim Hill Media.

And here’s a list of the speakers:

Diane Disney Miller - daughter of Walt Disney
Tony Baxter – current SR VP of Creative Development for Disneyland
Jack Lindquist – former President of Disneyland
Dick Nunis – Disney Legend and former Chairman of Walt Disney Attractions
Matt Ouimet – former President of Disneyland Resort
Buzz Price – Economist who helped Walt Disney find original site of Disneyland
Craig Russell- Current Chief Design and Project Delivery Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering
Marty Sklar- Disney Legend and former Vice Chair of Imagineering
Bruce Vaughn- Current Chief Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering

This was the first day, down in the multi-hued movie theatre that you can rent out parties, I think. This was the Founding Members Only discussion with Walt’s daughter Diane Disney Miller,  Disney Legend Buzz Price, and Disney historians and authors Katherine and Richard Greene as they discuss Walt’s idea, concept, and how Disneyland became a reality:

Photography by Joseph Driste, Courtesy The Walt Disney Family Museum

Former Disneyland executives Jack Lindquist and Matt Ouimet were joined by Senior Vice-President of Creative Development for Disneyland Tony Baxter as they discussed the development of Disneyland, its impact on America, and Walt’s legacy with former Vice Chair of Imagineering Marty Sklar:

Left to Right – Tony Baxter, Jack Lindquist, Matt Ouimet and moderator Marty Sklar. Photography by Joseph Driste, Courtesy The Walt Disney Family Museum

Disney Legends Dick Nunis and Marty Sklar, along with Craig Russell and Bruce Vaughn , currently executives with Walt Disney Imagineering, explored how Walt Disney’s new concept in family entertainment was a catalyst for parks around the world:

Photography by Joseph Driste, Courtesy The Walt Disney Family Museum

How will they top this in 2015 during the Diamond Jubilee of Disneyland?

Bon Courage, WDFM!

DriveClean – All New Cars in California to get SMOG and Greenhouse Gas Ratings

Monday, July 7th, 2008

Back a half-century ago, Oklahoma Senator Almer Stillwell “Mike” Monroney gave us the ubiquitous window sticker that you’ll see on the side of just about every new vehicle for sale. For your protection, of course. Thanks Mike.

But window space is going to get a little more crowded with information now that California Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board have teamed up to give you DriveClean. Now, you’re your going to get a SMOG score plus a Global Warming Score:

SMOG
Smog is a haze-like form of air pollution produced by the photochemical reaction of sunlight with volatile organic compounds (including non-methane organic gases) and oxides of nitrogen that have been released into the atmosphere, especially by automobile operation.

GREENHOUSE GASES
Greenhouse gases (ghg) emitted from vehicles include carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (NO2), and hydroflurocarbons (HFCs) from air conditioner refrigerant. Greenhouse gas emissions are the sum of all the ghg emissions and are identified as the CO2-equivalent value.

ep_label_callouts.jpg

So, something like a giant hybrid Lexus LS 600h L, which gets a relatively good Smog Score of 8, will get a poorer Global Warming Score. On the other hand, if they ever tested an old school Honda CRX HF, it would get a very poor Smog Score and a very good Global Warming Score. So it’s educational to have two separate scores.

The all-electric “2008 Tesla Roadster” (both of them! haha!) has a rating of a perfect 10 due to its “0 lbs.” of Annual Smog Emissions. The catch is this: ‘Does not include upstream emissions.” Uh oh. It’s a little funny how some people will bend over backwards to come up with a nonsensical 135 MPG figure for an all-electric car, but other people can’t even hazard a guess as to “upstream emissions,” which exist. (Of course, you power your Tesla with solar, of course, but averaging out emissions from coal fired and nuclear panner plants and the like wouldn’t be a crazy thing to do.)

So, check it out. And don’t miss the acronym page, with plenty of fun phrases like “Partial Zero-Emissions Vehicle.” (How would that compare with something like “Partial Herpes-Free Sex Partner?”).  

During a confusing time when an outfit like Lexus categorizes its hybrid products separately, (as if they’re an entirely different species of vehicle even though they are pretty similar to their gas-only stablemates), these ratings from DriveClean could have merit. So far, so good.