Dear Blog V XIV

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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 06 Apr 2014, 21:33

Dear Blog,

The Mazda had its first proper run this weekend with a trip down to the borders for a stag do, just shy of 500 miles so it's looking pretty filthy with a good coating of dirt on it. The drive was nice and smooth plus the auto wipers were working very well as a lot of variable conditions, also found the car does in deed have hill launch assist - it will hold it on a hill until you press the accelerator although I'm not very keen on it as the system seems hit and miss when it engages and it only holds the car for five seconds.

The stag weekend was great, we hired a stunning house and went to a GoApe place on Saturday. I'd never heard of it before but seems to be a national thing, it involves climbing up onto platforms and across various bridges of increasing complexity and heights with increasingly huge zip lines at the end. It was all smooth and well organised so I enjoyed it although there were a couple of the swings and the zip line I felt a little hesitant on as the harness and pulley system seemed quite minimal but held fine. They have their highest zip line in the UK which you can see some clips of on the video here:

http://goape.co.uk/days-out/peebles

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby robbo » 07 Apr 2014, 00:07

Dear Blog,

mrtoddie wrote:Dear Blog,

Cleaning :P and making things shiny :D he heh!

Got some clay, snow foam, meguiars 3 step lots of microfiber towels etc etc :D and a noodle wash mitt. Burn your sponges!!!they scratch your car!


Yeah, I've one of those mitts! I bought a load of stuff when I first got my car. Not that I've all of it though. Still try and keep up the 2 buckets wash routine with the grating thingy in the bucket though. Spent ages on www.cleanyourcar.co.uk reading through the forums there and also getting some stuff from www.detailedobsession.co.uk.

Johnmcl7 wrote:The stag weekend was great, we hired a stunning house and went to a GoApe place on Saturday


Lol! I first read that as 'we hired a stunning horse'!!! Thought you must go on very different types of stag dos to the rest of us... :lol: But yeah, go ape is great. I went on to one a few years ago of a stag do as well. The only real problem with it were the long waits between zip wires as you waited for the people ahead to go. One of the guys who worked there was bouncing on the zip as he went down it to increase speed. It looked like he was going to fall off his wire but he never did. A couple of us tried to replicate what he was doing but either didn't do it right or were too scared of falling off! (Even though you are harnessed to it.)
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby scarbunny » 07 Apr 2014, 11:57

mrtoddie wrote:Dear Blog,

Cleaning :P and making things shiny :D he heh!

Got some clay, snow foam, meguiars 3 step lots of microfiber towels etc etc :D and a noodle wash mitt. Burn your sponges!!!they scratch your car!


Dear Blog

That sounds like far too much work, just wait till your can barely see the wing mirrors then stick it through the car wash.

Need to get a new car, the missus is taking her test soon and wants the Yaris for her own use, but I have no idea what I want. She has said she'll buy me one for my birthday and I can have either £10,000 or £200 a month, but I just don't know, ideally needs to be under 3 years old as cars imported into the island over 3 years have to go through a stringent MOT type test which is a pain. Needs to satisfy my tech lust, and I'm sort of leaning to automatic as my left knee is buggered. Just confused, getting fed up of looking.
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby matt » 07 Apr 2014, 12:30

dear blog,
what size car you want?

10k should give you plenty of options, even with 3 years old...

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/ ... ogcode=flp
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby scarbunny » 07 Apr 2014, 15:24

Dear Blog

I think that's the problem there is too much choice.

Looking for 1 Series-ish size, I like the 1 Series but the interiors are poo, the in car entertainment doesn't seem particularly advanced and the auto isn't brilliant. I like the Mini Cooper, but the auto is terrible and finding the extras I want is proving near impossible on my budget. The Audi A1 is a lovely auto, the interior is a little bland, and all the ones that were in my budget on Autotrader have vanished.

I might have to have a proper look into the Mini I really liked the Clubman I tested a while back, and there are some in my budget that look good.

I was planning on getting a vehicle sourcing center to find me what I want, but first I need to know what I want.
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby robbo » 07 Apr 2014, 21:37

Dear Blog,

How is this A1 Competition Line 3dr S Tronic Hatchback only £5,065?! Something dodgy must be going on here... http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/ ... ?logcode=p
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 08 Apr 2014, 00:04

Dear Blog,

It's a very common scam on Autotrader Robbo although unusually that one doesn't have an e-mail address on one of the pictures you're meant to contact them on. The way it works is the seller chooses a fairly desirable car (Audis are popular choices for this) and lists it for sale at a much lower price than it's worth using pictures stolen off Pistonheads, ebay or similar. When the potential buyer gets in touch they will be told that the seller has moved abroad and can't sell the car locally as it's right hand drive so they're selling it cheap to get rid of it quickly. They will ship it to the UK for the included price and they will claim to use an escrow like service to handle the money so the buyer is completely safe as their funds aren't released until the buyer is happy with the car. In reality of course it's a fake copy of ebay, amazon or even Yahoo finance at one point even though they don't offer a payment service. Of course once you make the payment through the service your money is gone and so is the seller.

The scam has been going on for years now and you'd think it would never work as it's so incredibly obvious it's a scam (cheap desirable car, free shipping, no risk payment etc.) but sadly people still fall for it on a regular basis. Autotrader is absolutely flooded with them even though some people work hard on finding and reporting these scams. I think Autotrader should be doing more, at the moment they can match cars up to the spec so it shows the engine, fuel consumption etc. for each car - I don't think it would be difficult to also check for value and if the car is listed far below what it's worth then it needs to be manually checked. There are of course some cars that are much cheaper for a reason, they're a cat C write off or there's some other issue but in most cases I suspect any super cheap car is a scam. The scammers could raise their prices to near normal to avoid this but I think much less people would fall for them, sadly many people just seem too optimistic when they see something super cheap rather than wondering straight away why is it so cheap?

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby scarbunny » 08 Apr 2014, 09:51

Dear Blog

I find it hard to believe people would hand over money with out having seen a car, I mean obviously this happens otherwise the scammers would have given up years ago, but it just seems like such a risky move.

Although saying that one of my colleagues relatives has just done the a very similar thing for a Honda CR-V, they made a low offer on the car which was rejected then the seller contacted them saying he hadn't realized they were on the Isle of Man and he would accept the lower offer and deliver it himself as he is a fan of the TT. They "only" paid a deposit so don't stand to lose that much but still seems far to good to be true, should find out the next couple of days.
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Tappy » 08 Apr 2014, 13:29

Dear Blog,

There's another common scam which involves something similar but when you're selling a car. I can't remember how it works now, but someone is supposedly abroad, and somehow you end up giving them money which you never see again. I kept getting emails trying it on me when I had my car listed on Autotrader.

I went to Go Ape as part of a stag do too. Then I rented a horse.

EDIT: Looked it up. They pay for the car and for the shipping costs (£850) through paypal but put a hold on the payment until that extra money for shipping has been paid by you (via Western Union) to the 'Shipper'. But the PayPal email isn't real, they just send you a faked PayPal message.
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 08 Apr 2014, 13:33

Dear Blog,

I find it hard to believe as well as it's such a blatant scam but I've seen the forum posts with people looking for help after realising they've been scammed and clearly when you're making several thousand for each hit, your actual hit rate can be very low. The question I've wondered is how they fund the autotrader adverts as there's usually a lot of adverts up and they're not that cheap, I would assume autotrader don't refund them if they pull the advert but it would make the scheme a lot more viable if they do.

At one point on AVForums they had a serial group of scammers that had a fairly clever system going, there was a lot of requests to significantly change the system to prevent scams (anyone following the rules would have been protected from this scam even though it was clever). The reply from the AVForums staff pointed out there was only so much they could do and people needed to be more careful themselves pointing to some recent straight forward Apple scams that people had been caught out by. After the serial scammers original system was blocked they took to the more usual one of offering new and expensive Apple products for around half what they were worth. You'd think a new seller with no feedback selling new desirable Apple products at half their worth would set all number of alarm bells ringing but no, they managed to get the money twice for a Macbook and the same for an Iphone, in the latter one of the people had PM'd the scammer and paid for the phone after the moderators had locked the thread while it was investigated for potential scamming. Some people just clearly through caution to the wind when they think they're onto a good deal.

It's hard to say with the CR-V, it certainly doesn't sound like it's a scam because if anything the scammers usually tend to be incredibly greedy.

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby robbo » 09 Apr 2014, 22:12

Dear Blog,

Argh, only went and dropped my phone yesterday didn't I? Dented bottom corner... Got the case back on it now although now it doesn't fit into the sock I bought for it when I leave the phone in my work bag.

A few 12 hr days at work and trying to write an assignment means sleepy Robbo who needs lots of sleep. Looking forward to my next day off. On Good Friday.
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 10 Apr 2014, 01:16

Dear Blog,

I've had a few very long shifts this week (I curse flaky Intel RAID 1 arrays and printers!) but finally off shift so hoping to have some therapeutic Lego construction, mountain bike riding and dog walking.

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 17 Apr 2014, 01:30

Dear Blog,

I can sum up my day with two news headlines:

http://windowsitpro.com/windows-xp/wind ... ion-update

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-27058766

So bit of a busy day although thankfully so far there's been few problems after the power cut, there's usually one or two PC's that blow power supplies or hard drives.

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby Johnmcl7 » 20 Apr 2014, 23:02

Dear Blog,

I hope it's all quiet here as people are away enjoying the fine weather. I had a good cycle yesterday and just nice having warm weather for a change today.

Have Amazon changed their returns policy? I have an item that the manufacturer have determined as faulty and went to organise a return through Amazon but it won't give me the option as the order is over 30 days. I've read through their help pages but it's a bit vague as to what you are meant to do, it says to contact the manufacturer for after sales service but it should be up to amazon sort out the return as they're the retailer.

I'm hoping they haven't changed the way they handle returns as it's the main reason I went for Prime.

John
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Re: Dear Blog V XIV

Postby jurassicjim » 21 Apr 2014, 08:50

Dear Blog,

Johnmcl7 wrote:Have Amazon changed their returns policy? I have an item that the manufacturer have determined as faulty and went to organise a return through Amazon but it won't give me the option as the order is over 30 days. I've read through their help pages but it's a bit vague as to what you are meant to do, it says to contact the manufacturer for after sales service but it should be up to amazon sort out the return as they're the retailer.

I'm hoping they haven't changed the way they handle returns as it's the main reason I went for Prime.

John


I just click on "help" and then start a chat, they should do any return as normal as long as it is within 12 months old. Recently did this with 2 pairs of headphones.

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