#1206: Help Me Blow Up an LTD

Ever Wonder How to Make a Car Explode?

Original Air Date: 02.11.2012

   Best Moment 1:32

This week on Car Talk, DIY filmmaker Seth is preparing to shoot a big scene: a car explosion in the front yard (of his neighbor's house, of course). Seth's hoping Tom and Ray can help minimize the risk of seeing his house go up in smithereens, and his eyebrows getting that old familiar "Acme Dynamite" look. Can our Chief Counsel Hugh Louis Dewey duct tape the guys' mouths before they wade in to litigious waters? Elsewhere, Michael's RAV 4 is whining in the cold weather even louder than Tommy usually does; Ray trips the Bogosity alarm by introducing the "Connecting Rod Stretch Theory" to explain an Explorer's knocking sound; and on Stump the Chumps, did Tom and Ray diagnose the "amorous donkey" noise in Joan's Honda? All this, and lots more, this week on Car Talk.

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This Week's Puzzler

Rockie and Throckie, the racing grasshoppers are antenna-to-antenna... but who wins? Find out!

Last Week's Puzzler

How did the soldiers figure out a way to extend the life of a fan belt? Find out!

Show Open Topic

A distracted driving tale, and question.

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Baby inside car. Big No NO

by newguynet

Just a note: I live in the Caribbean, and leaving a baby inside a car is a big NO NO. Here are two separate cases where a lawyer and a doctor forgot their babies in the back seat while going to work and found them dead when getting back for lunch. Temperature can rise above 150 degrees Fahrenheit in minutes. Just my 2 cents.

Favorite Moment: The donkey sound...

RAV4 with stuck brake caliper

by debudebu

Most things shrink when they are cold, but one thing expands: water. This guy with the RAV4 needs a brake fluid change. The very small amount of water that has managed to get in the brake fluid over the years is expanding when the temperatures get very cold, making the brake engage enough to make a noise. I just fixed this problem with my own Honda Fit by changing my brake fluid.

Favorite Moment: RAV4 noisy wheel

Fan Belt Puzzler

by MustangSally77

@ Charlie RT No! It’s not a “bogus puzzler”! Tom and Ray did NOT say to twist the entire fan-belt! They said the soldiers employed a technical maneuver in MAKING the fan-belts, so that they would last longer; that special maneuver is known as a “Mobius Strip”. To learn more about mobius strips, try looking “mobius strip” up on your favorite Internet search-engine, or in an illustrated dictionary, or check-out these two links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M%C3%B6bius_strip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVsIAa2XNKc Brilliant!

Favorite Moment: Tom and Ray! Love you guys! (And kudos for refraining wisely from pyrotechnical commentary! LOL!)

Jim's Ford Explorer Knocking

by CaseyR89

Might be a failing throwout bearing and not a knock at all. I have a volvo s70 that sounds like a clackity old diesel, but as soon as you step on the clutch, the noise is gone.

Favorite Moment: The whole show.

How to blow up your LTD II

by whammy

Short answer, STAY AWAY FROM GASOLINE. Use high fat milk replacer (lambs milk or Cremora work well): 20 parts replacer (by weight) with 1 part ignition/lift charge. The higher the fat content, the bigger the fireball. You will need to dub an audio track for the 'boom' part, because this effect has limited power, and burns relatively slowly. A nice side effect is low fallout or incidental damage. The pyros should be able to figure out the rest from the info I've given you here. Have fire extinguishers handy. I suggest experimenting in a safe location to determine what quantity you require (this is the fun part), and safe distances. This will also preclude using high explosives (which Hollywood has generally forgone with the above solution). Be safe and have fun!

Michael's RAV4

by mjbird

Does the RAV2 have a turbo charger? My beetle is a TDI, with a turbo. I had a bad mass air sensor which was preventing the turbo from kicking in until I went faster than walking speed. I also have a crack in the input stage shroud of my turbocharger, and it'll whistle in the cold weather until the engine heats it up. My mechanic says since the crack is in the input stage, it's not really important. This seems to fit Michael's issues.

Favorite Moment: Stump the Chumps!

A Hot Sunbird

by Wyndchill

Guys, just my two cents, I used to have a 1989 Pontiac Sunbird that would overheat on a regular basis (just like Doris's). In my case, it turned out to be the fan relay switch.

Favorite Moment: "Yeah, how do you explain -that-?"

Prius Mistake

by Joe13

You can sleep all night in your Prius with the heater or AC on. It runs on the battery till it gets down to a certain point. Then the motor starts briefly, builds up the battery and then turns off with no interruption in power. A smart, succinct, low profanity little car. Good.

Favorite Moment: The amorous donkey, of course.

Great show! Music question

by mckeifus

Loved the part about the Amorous Donkey...hilarious. Had a question: What was the song on after Jim and his stuck valve...2 step man playing in a 2 step band?

Favorite Moment: Amorous Donkey...HRR HRR HRR

Bogus puzzler

by Charlie RT

The driven accessory would now turn backwards if it was the water pump not going to work unless the cooling system was designed to flow both ways

A Distracted Driving Tale--and a Question

A Car Talk listener shares a distracted driving moment that tops them all!

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