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Christmas Dream

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  • Christmas Dream

    On a crisp winter morning I get into my bone-chillingly cold Tundra and fire up the V8, get things organized by re-setting the odometer to zero, clear the NUVI for a new round of navigation and put my starting mileage on my manifest and now I am ready to begin another day picking-up and delivering everything from envelopes to products to those fortunate to be able to do at home dialysis to hundreds of pounds of whatever to wherever. I am a courier and drive from 150 to 250 miles every day but, on hectic days I've gone 500 miles before returning to the barn.

    The heater is making warm and within a mile will get serious, ultimately blowing 155 degree hot air from the vents.

    I'm on the freeway and hit the switch changing over from gasoline to Natural Gas, which I'll drive on until the tanks are empty, about 200 miles down the road, then go back to gasoline unless I stop at a CNG station and top-off. The computer was programmed to make that switch-over seamless and smooth and the drop off in power is almost imperceptible with this engine and transmission. A side benefit is that the Toyota problem with oil filters and sludge and the like have been completely eliminated by using CNG.

    Usually I plug the truck into the at home filling station which allows me to get a special low rate from my utility, PG&E so the cost of driving the Tundra drops from $2.80 a gallon for gas to around half, or less, of that cost.

    Most days I don't use any gasoline at all. My oil stocks don't notice at all .... but I sure do.

    I did the conversion because, as long as I drive for a living, I have to keep expenses as low as possible and, although it hasn't happened as of Christmas, 2009, I am in deathly fear that when gas goes up again, it will zoom right past the last high to $5.00 and beyond. And stay there.

    Then I'll still be able to 'keep on truck'in' so to speak, and continue working.

    Then I woke up.

    Dang! CRUD!

    Although the technology exists, I have not found it. Not that Government will allow me to install and use.

    How can I make my dream reality?

  • #2
    Re: Christmas Dream

    The simple solution is to park the gas hog Tundra and get a clean burning cng vehicle while prices are still relatively low. In Ca you'll not be seeing any conversion kits for your truck in this lifetime, at least not with CARB approval. It sounds like you really like the idea of useing cng and have thought it out very well. Now you just need to be realistic about your options for vehicles to do this. Pick up a low mile Chevy 1/2 ton at a GSA auction, that's already set up for both fuels. Get a newer Cavalier, or even a Civic GX and add carpool access to your vision of the perfect daily driver. Best of luck.


    • #3
      Re: Christmas Dream

      Remember Mick Jagger singing " You can't always get what you want , but if you try somtime , you can get what ya NEED "

      Go buy a new or used dedicated ford or gm pickup or van that already meets all CARB requirements for carpool access, and add an extra fuel tank for range, I see lot's of used cng vans at the auctions , rather cheap actually.


      Buy a dedicated cng Crown Vic, New or Used with extended range tanks.


      Buy a GX, take out the back seat , put in a cargo shelf, add an extra tank and be happy. Ya , I know , not being up high enough in a GX to see over passenger cars in traffic really sucks, but that is life.

      P.S. Toyota hasn't has a "Oil Filter/Sludge" problem in almost ten years , and it was on one v-6 engine family only. If they still did, I'm sure you would have skipped the Tundra.