Here in Maine we park the Gem in a garage for the winter. We installed a plug and put her to sleep. It’s supposed to wake up every 14 days and charge the batteries. I hope it did!
Anyway when April rolls around it’s time to get the Gem out. Then my wife and I fight to see who gets to use the car. (she usually wins)
Of course we go places together too.
The best place to go is to the ice cream shop of course.
Worcester, MA has gotten the most snow this season in the whole country. We just got another 6 inches on Tuesday so my GEM project sits under a tarp waiting for the snow to melt away (again). I travel to Maine each Labor Day weekend so I’ll make an effort to look you up when I go through Skowhegan. Will the GEM fit between the posts and allow crossing the river on the steel bridge below the dam? I’ve done it on the bike but never took out a tape measure.
We finally got the GEM out again yesterday. Here in Maine we had to wait for the snow to melt to get the car out. It was fun to get around town, and of course we paid a visit to the ice cream shop.
Ours is still sleeping off old man winter since he won’t go away. Hopefully it’ll warm up and well get her out soon.
I’m still sourcing larger rims for it anyways. The recent snow just gives me more time I suppose.
Here in Rochester NY we drive our Gem all winter.
Only got stuck once, and almost stuck twice.
Lights and heated seats use cuts mileage roughly in half.
Where do you drive it? On the public roads?
I am not willing to subject mine to Rochester’s 6 month long salt bath.
Yep, park ave, downtown to the little, out to dinner, Wegmans… All the trips that ICE engines are least efficient, most polluting, and cause them most wear and tear, tend to be perfect fit for the Gem.
Probably gets more use in winter. In summer it has more competition from the bicycles.
The alloy frame itself isn’t much of a problem with salt but the bolts and other places where ferrous metals touch the aluminum alloy are subject to corrosion. Best wash it down after each trip IMHO.
Most of the front suspension is steel & cast iron. Around here they salt like crazy. When the air is dryer the roads and vehicles are white with salt. Mix it with water and it makes an extremely brackish bath that gets into everything.
LMT, Yep, part of the cost of living in this climate.
I used to allow such things to interfere with my pleasure. Now I’ve decided not to. While I enjoy looking at the car, I really enjoy using this car. So I think I’ll use it.
I have a friend who bought a brand new 911. Kept it for like 7 years. Sold it with under 5000 miles on it. It was immaculate when he sold it, and he may have realized a few thousand dollar premium at sale.
But the car cost him over $5 a mile to own. He always worried about it. It pointed out an obsessive compulsive behavior I saw in myself that I decided wasn’t adding value to my experience.
In 10 years if the few metal parts on this car need replacement, I will replace them. Or maybe I’ll sell it. Or maybe it will already have been traded for something much cooler. We are on the cusp of a revolution in automobiles and I suspect there will be something much cooler that I’d rather have long before this thing wears out.
If keeping your Gem pristine gives you more pleasure than driving it, than do that. If it doesn’t, maybe it’s time to reconsider your rules. (BTW, mine has doors, heated seats, and defroster. It can still be pretty uncomfortable when it get’s into the teens. If you don’t have these features, enjoyment of driving in cold weather will require some masochistic traits.)
And since I drive it as often as I drive my Sportwagen (possibly more often), no it doesn’t get a bath after every exercise.
Another big part of the equation for me is comfort. I do not have doors, nor heated seats. While I suppose I could be on it today, I also do not ride my motorcycle till the weather gets warm. I will stick with my petro burners until spring arrives.
[QUOTE=bob.peloquin;14491]Worcester, MA has gotten the most snow this season in the whole country. We just got another 6 inches on Tuesday so my GEM project sits under a tarp waiting for the snow to melt away (again). I travel to Maine each Labor Day weekend so I’ll make an effort to look you up when I go through Skowhegan. Will the GEM fit between the posts and allow crossing the river on the steel bridge below the dam? I’ve done it on the bike but never took out a tape measure.[/QUOTE]
The other car we built would fit, but we only did it once when nobody was likely to be on the bridge, as it took up the whole walking bridge. I don’t think the Gem would fit.
It’s a good little car to get around town, but it would be really useful in a bigger place like Worcester or even Waterville.
I am happy to have found this forum. I have a lot of questions for you all! To the person who drives in the winter: is there a way to tighten the doors? We have nice hard ones, but there are lots of gaps and the breeze comes in like mad. I tried putting pipe insulation around the driver’s side, but there may be something better. Any ideas?
Something that will also affect the gap around your doors is the latch adjustment. Make sure that when the door is fully closed that the latch allows the door to close properly. If it has moved outward just a small bit then the entire door will have a gap that would not be there otherwise. Also, good advice from above is that you may need to use some weather stripping on both the car and the door depending on the width of the gap. If you have a large gap put some insulation on the door and the car to close the gap without making a huge piece of stripping that will not stay put for very long. You mentioned pipe insulation or swimming pool noodles that could provide you with a good solid base for the car side of the door. Since they come in many colors you might be able to match your car’s frame. Good luck
Hard to believe that we are only a couple of months from taking the Gem out for a spin. Right now it’s buried behind a snowbank in its shed. I unplug and replug it whenever I can, but there is about 8 feet of snow that has to melt before it comes out of the bat cave.
Although I’m from Michigan, But haven’t been back north since 2001. I can’t fathom in my memory or imagination what it must be like to live in that kind of snow and cold. I’m sure that in your mind you must have a valid reason to live in such extreme weather conditions. I mean, even Alaska does not have that much snow.
Its getting kind of full here in paradise, But I will put in a word to see if we have room for one more chump that’s had enough…
We put the Gem away in the winter and drive cars with snow tires. When the snow bank melts away we’ll take it out again. Right now I’m sugaring, so I have no time to use the electric car anyway. In April it will melt, maybe…
Anyway it’s fun to take it out again. It’s like a boat or something. So fun to buzz around town in it!
I’m a newbie here… Why is the content removed from all of GTMO-GEM posts…?
The Gem is still in the shed behind massive mounds of snow, so it will be a while before it comes out again. That’s okay, because the weather isn’t quite ready for it yet.