Too cold to drive?

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Tom Hicks
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Too cold to drive?

Post by Tom Hicks » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:19 am

People enjoy skiing at 0*, so why not drive your Model T?

Mine are open cars, closed cars might be different, but I have found I can drive comfortably down to 40* by dressing properly. Below 40* I have to wear so much in the way of coats and face protection that I can not move easily and really don't enjoy the drive. Keeping the speed under 35 helps too. But with a sweater, coat with a collar that goes up to cover the neck, and a wool cap over the ears I can drive comfortably.

Fortunately in Central Va. we often get afternoons 40* or over and I get to drive a lot!

What is the lowest temperature that you find comfortable to drive in?
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Angmar » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:26 am

Comfortable? Maybe 25 to 30. I dress for it though and having an open car, the bottom half of me stays warm but the top half goes blue. I feel your pain for sure. Can't wait for spring.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:37 am

I'll retell the story of the morning in 1985 when it was at most -30°. Neither my wife's car nor my pickup would start. We bundled up the kids in our 4-seat Speedster and took them to the sitter's. It was dark but we have lights. Then I drove my wife to the bus and I made it to work. We typically took them to breakfast in the Speedster on freezing days just for fun. That was the only running T we had. I built 2 closed T's since those days but the kids are grown now.
That is what some of us crazies do.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by John Warren » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:04 am

Rich, do you have any photos of the fordoorless speedster? I have driven my race car in freezing weather. Not as much fun as at least 50 deg.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:17 am

Hi John. This is it. We added the rear seats when our daughter was born and our son was to big to carry on Joy's lap.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by ironhorse » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:28 am

That depends on what you are driving and where. I remember going to Circle Hot Springs from Fairbanks Ak on an Arctic Cat 440 (That's a snowmobile,and you don't get more open than that) in 1971 or 72 in February,outside air temp -22*F didn't know what wing chill was but we averaged 35 mph, Thank god for ARMY TA-50 gear. :mrgreen:
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by BHarper » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:55 am

Hi Rich,

WOW, minus 30! We might see 20 below zero here once or twice a winter and during my years at the other end of New Hampshire (Littleton) we would often endure a week or so during the depths of winter when the daytime high temperature would struggle to touch ten above zero. There were some mornings of negative 25 degrees when my trusty '66 Volvo wagon was one of very few cars making an appearance at the company parking lot. But I digress, back to Model Ts.

I have had my coupe out in temperatures as low as four above zero.
Troy Ice Falls 011306.JPG
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As for my open cars, the coldest I have been out in them would be ten above zero, and on those days it did warm up into the mid to upper twenties. As Tom Hicks states above, proper clothing IS essential if you want to be comfortable and truly enjoy your winter motoring excursion. While warm clothing in layers is necessary, the need for a wind proof barrier is essential. Hours of exposure at 35 miles per hour, seated still, will penetrate most clothing and soak into your bones and that can turn the most intrepid motorist into a miserable and regretful soul. The dry chemical hand and toe warmers often used by ice fishermen, hunters, and other winter sports participants can be very helpful if you are going to be in your T for any length of time.

My journey to the Tamworth, NH snowmobile meet in 2017 was a comfortable 225 mile round trip.
16473281_356558638076140_8849894271387503640_n.jpg

So, Buck Up Lads and Lassies! Don your layers, put on your fur coat (the Inuits know what works) and relish Winter Touring! The look on the faces of the Muggles when they see you is Priceless.

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Steve Jelf » Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:15 am

How cold is too cold depends partly on genetics. My body's reaction to cold air, especially moving cold air, is for my nose to become a snot fountain. It robs winter activities of their charm and has me counting the 53 days to spring.
The inevitable often happens.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Dean Kiefer » Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:39 am

Years ago I drove our 14 Touring with side curtains on to Mark Camerons swap meet, it was 7 degrees above 0 when I started. The rout I took was 62 miles one way. You are right about how hard it is to maneuver inside with all the clothing on. At about 55 miles I stopped at a gas station for a cup of coffee, the people in there must have thought I was just driving around the block because they made no big deal about seeing a T out in that cold of weather. Then one of them asked were I lived and when I told them Adams then they all got a little excited and said are you freaking nuts? My wife Emily was in Florida at the time visiting her sisters so between the two of us you know which one is freaking nuts.

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by John Warren » Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:06 pm

I had to laugh at your post Jeff, My eyes get to watering so bad I cant see along with my nose running. One time my hands were cold enough to be some what paralyzed and I couldn't unbutton my levis. I was really wondering if I was going to pee my pants before I was able get enough life back into my hands. I almost asked a complete stranger to help me. :shock: looks great Rich!
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:55 pm

The ice cream freeze between the eyes is the worst to me. You can't decide whether to slow down and lessen the wind or speed up and get it over.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rob » Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:22 pm

IMG_1128.JPG

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rich Eagle » Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:32 pm

She certainly has the look of a true enthusiast Rob.
You did well.
Kept warm, the excitement of winter driving has a marvelous effect at that age.
I bet she tells fantastic stories to her friends now.
Rich
When did I do that?

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by jagiven » Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:52 pm

Coldest I have driven my roadster was 17oF, no top, hence no side curtains. I just wore my carhartt jacket and a sweat jacket. Choppers, stocking cap, a face mask and sunglasses. I would guess it was a 20 mile drive. The bare skin on my face was cold but that was it.

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Duey_C » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:28 am

The worst I did was 28 above zero driving the topless 24 Crappy Lizzhe Runabout delivering a battery out to my son's fishhouse on 3 feet of ice. Good times.
Mother Nature had taken the snow from my Hill so that was fair game. :)
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Tom Hicks » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:06 am

You guys are tough! The lowest I have tried is 35*F and I did not get far, my face couldn't handle it.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Kuhner » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:08 am

This was 28 degrees this year.
Not bad at around town speeds, but little uncomfortable at top over the road speed.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Gonenorth » Mon Jan 28, 2019 9:05 am

Personally I just prefer to park my T for the winter. Cold is one issue. I have driven it at 45 degrees, and in an open car wind chill becomes an issue. With side curtains it might be a lot better. However that's not the biggest factor to consider when contemplating driving the car in winter up here in the jack pines...it's road salt. If you have spent time, effort, and copious amounts of cash removing rust or finding ways to stabilize it, I doubt it would be wise to head out on the treated roads around here and give your car a salt and slush bath. However, when you have days with highs below zero and lows predicted to be -29 and -34 as we do up here for Tuesday and Wednesday, it's kinda hard to put on enough layers to make the drive tolerable even if the road salt danger is negligible at those temps.


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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Dennis Prince » Mon Jan 28, 2019 10:41 am

The coldest that I have ever driven in is -13 for Christmas parade, everyone in the parade got special little trophy certifying our stupidity. I felt bad for the marching band.

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Rich Eagle » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:44 pm

While we're at it "It's OK kid, you'll learn to love it."
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by BHarper » Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:16 am

Hi Kevin,

Yes, salt or whatever noxious, corrosive material they coat the roads with, IS a concern to me and I rarely take my cars out when the roads are white with "stuff". After a winter jaunt and I see that my car has a whitish tint on the underside I can wash it off before putting it away.

Winter Touring certainly is not for everyone in the colder climes, but with planning it can be a hoot. Be safe, Bill


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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Hal » Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:23 pm

I've never driven in the temperatures some of you are talking about, but I have done it at about 40F in a Touring car. I found that driving with the top down was warmer than with it up, as you received the radiant heat from the sun. Removing the upper floor board helped get warm air into the car. The windshield blocked the majority of the cold air. What got the coldest was the back of my head. Bear in mind, there were no rear passengers. I'm sure the back seat is another story altogether, but it wasn't bad at all in the front seat.


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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Tom_Carnegie » Tue Jan 29, 2019 12:27 pm

Our local club has a tradition of taking our T's out on the first of January every year. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVoa49jrJps&t=0s

One year it was very cold - close to zero, perhaps below and the wind was blowing. Still a dozen or so T's showed up and toured. I drive my T year 'round. I find that you kind of get used to the weather. Today the temperature was in the low twenties. T started OK and the drive to work was nice with the roads bare and dry.

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by RustyFords » Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:44 pm

This south Texas kid saw temps while in the Air Force at Grand Forks, ND in the -50's (with wind chill...actual temps in the -20's).

That made me swear off the state and those kind of temps forever. And I never complained about the Texas heat after that again.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by George House » Tue Jan 29, 2019 4:31 pm

Too cold ?? This was yesterday, 28 January..70 degrees under a robin egg blue sky.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Bob in Texas » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:52 pm

That was yesterday. But today it is too cold even in Texas. But this weekend in Gonzales Texas should be just fine.
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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by GrandpaFord » Tue Jan 29, 2019 6:41 pm

Please be careful out there this week. It is expected to get colder than Antarctica in parts of the northern mid-west. Two people have already frozen to death. Stay inside. Don't over exert yourself trying to shovel snow or start your frozen car. Keep your cell phone charged.


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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by mcenhillk » Tue Jan 29, 2019 7:09 pm

Sorry, off topic here but does anyone else find it funny that this thread is labeled as a "Hot Topic"? :lol:
Still looking for the 1,000 square foot house with the 12 car garage...

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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by Ruxstel24 » Tue Jan 29, 2019 8:09 pm

mcenhillk wrote:
Tue Jan 29, 2019 7:09 pm
Sorry, off topic here but does anyone else find it funny that this thread is labeled as a "Hot Topic"? :lol:
Yeah, and almost too cold to drive the Subaru !! Cold as Hell... :? :lol:


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Re: Too cold to drive?

Post by yukonjack » Tue Jan 29, 2019 8:26 pm

rustyfords wrote:
Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:44 pm
This south Texas kid saw temps while in the Air Force at Grand Forks, ND in the -50's (with wind chill...actual temps in the -20's).

That made me swear off the state and those kind of temps forever. And I never complained about the Texas heat after that again.
A lot of construction jobs in the Yukon were seasonal, but I worked through two winters there...winter 2010/11 I was working at Victoria Gold in Dublin Gulch; they had a wood frame cook shack and field office, but we slept in 4 man canvas wall tents. Coldest I saw it that winter was -50*F (before wind chill was added), but we had stoves with the old type pot burners and plenty of diesel fuel so we at least slept comfortably. The arctic diesel fuel was a blend of 99% kero /1% naptha, so we had no problem with the fuel waxing! We worked winter 2012/13 replacing above ground heating oil tanks for the federal government; at the RCMP detachment in Mayo we had several sunny days but with daytime highs at -65*F, -75 with wind chill. People from New Brunswick laugh when I tell them we retired here for the nice winters, but its the truth!

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