Locksmiths and Gas prices

I was sitting at a red light tonight for around three minutes. Not another
car in sight. Imagine how much gas is wasted by all the vehicles in America
sitting at red lights when no other traffic is on the road. I bet we could
save a lot of oil if it was mandated for all cities and counties to put
traffic signals on "blinking" except during high traffic flow hours. Years
ago in Myrtle beach S.C., in the off season, they kept them on "blink" 24/7.
I loved driving down there then. Now in my area it seems the lights impede
instead of assist. Most of our industry has moved overseas or to Mexico and
the traffic lights that once were needed now just aggravate drivers. Maybe
if gas gets to 4.00 per gallon the politicians will wake up and start
conservation mandates. I heard a news reporter say that gas prices will
probably continue to climb because Walmarts profits are at record highs. He
said a lot of the huge companies use Walmarts figures as their barometer for
how much disposable income lower income persons have. As long as the masses
are buying, he thinks the large gas companies will keep easing up the price.
I guess they think they deserve the money as much as Walmart. I tried to
keep my service call as low as I can but its tough to see that extra few
hundred gas dollars go bye bye monthly. Using the Walmart/Gas company logic
I should have increased my fees so that my customers would have had less to
spend at Walmart. Never thought about it that way before. I just might
hike em up and see if it helps.
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I share this peeve sort of. My particular gripe is the cities that do not take the time to time the signals on main drags so you can maintain a steady rate and make most all the signals.
Reply to
Roger Shoaf
... and to mention a completely different theme about traffic flow and lights, where /adding/ lights actually aids in the flow of traffic...
Our nearby freeways are so congested that the onramps are 'amended' by 'sequencing' traffic lights. Multilane freeway up there with heavy traffic, two laned onramps feeding into the congested freeway, each lane having sequenced green and red lights to let usually two cars sometimes one from each lane into the freeway congestion at a time. Supposedly this makes everything flow better, the congested freeways as well as the congested onramps.
Reply to
Mike Easter
Those actually do a lot of good for the traffic flow from what I understand. I noticed a long time back that where there some stretches of freeway that you could always count on to be snarled up at certian times of day. When the issue of why was studied they found out that the sudden influx a bunch of cars would cause a interesting thing to happen. Drivers tend to carry out there task in the background of their minds. And rely on their subconscious mind especially pattern recognition to regain their focus on the driving while they put on hold the thoughts they had been thinking while driving.
While this sounds pretty scary most folks pull it off without a problem.
Now we have a large plant or whatnot letting every one off shift at one time. Here come all these cars invading the comfort zone of the folks already on the freeway. The natural reaction of a safe driver is to slow while they are assessing the intrusion of their space while they are processing the threat and as a result brake lights start flashing.
Now the natural reaction to seeing a bunch of brake lights ahead is more brake lights. This causes a chain reaction of the whole traffic flow and causes the rate of the flow of traffic to considerably slow down.
The metering lights significantly reduce the panic of the herd mentality so the chain reaction never develops and the flow of traffic can be maintained.
Reply to
Roger Shoaf
I was in a garage this week, helping a mechanic out and we were discussing rates.. I scared him.. He is making about 10-15 an hour on his flat rate, (the shop rate is $50 an hour) and I walk in, do a 10 minute job, and in some cases make more than he does for the whole morning..and this place is only a 2 mile drive from me.. I figured up my time, VS milage, and will price the trip charge 1 of 2 ways.. bear in mind, the prices in MY area are a LOT cheaper than what you can get on the coasts.. a service call here is $25 normally.. but, we are CLOSE driving time-meaning that gets you a 3-4 mile range for most of your business, and the per hour is in the $50-60 range for most 'smiths'.. I just refigured my long trip charge, drove 58 miles 1 way to rebuild 3 doors, and came up with a $1.50 a mile charge-that gave me the per hour rate that is comparable with everyone else here. (never mind the vehicle I drove that day gets 40 MPG)
another thing to look at as well is what is your PER KEY copy charge.. I am seeing a lot of 'semi common' REGULAR blanks now costing upwards of double what they did a few years back.. and am also changing the price of copies.. am leaning towards 3 or 4 levels of pricing.. house keys-base price american 'regular' keys- times 1.5 base price foreign 'regular' keys, times 1.75 base price and the higher security stuff being customed priced..(no limits here)
I have noticed now too that freight incoming is getting to be a good percentage.. I order $100 of stuff from the supplier, and freight is or can be 15% or more.. due to increased charges by the UPS or Fed EX.. JUST DUE TO WEIGHT
another thing..there are times now I am charging 2-3 TIMES the cost of the lock to rekey house locks what with the trip charge etc, ( this being 1 or 2 locks total on a house) and the people are NOT balking AT ALL..its really funny out there.. --Shiva--
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You remember 1973, and the "gas lines" when President Peanut made a mess of things? We did have conservation mandates then, which included two dollar gas rationing and President Peanut wearing a sweater in the white house.
I do believe that any "solution" our elected officials will find is going to be less desirable than what I would do in the same situation. But, then, I'm sure I'm not electable.
In the meantime, yesterday I spent $30 on gas, and the day before $20. The fueltank was about half full when I hit the drive way yesterday, and I expect to drop another $40 or so in fuel today, got a lot of errands.
Reply to
Stormin Mormon
"Stormin Mormon" <cayoung61-#spamblock*-@hotmail.com> wrote in message
Here in Cairns unleaded petrol is around $1.10 per liter, (whatever that converts out to in gallons ??) Most locksmiths in Australia drive 2ltr 4 cylinder vans, Toyota being most popular. On a busy week I will spend $55 (2 tanks full). Looking at the type and size of vans you guys get around in over there it's no wonder you chew up so much fuel. Do Toyota or Mitsubishi have a 'commercial work van' presence in the US market ? Cheers all.
Reply to
Steve Paris
I'm still using my 1985 Toyota Van as it still suits my needs for a locksmith vehicle but I think I'm the exception. I keep threatening to get a new van but since it gets around 28 mpg I plan on keeping until it falls apart. I haven't seen many small vans being used for the business.
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They sell it by the liter to screw you out of a couple of bucks per gallon. BTW is the term buck used in OZ to refer to the OZ dollar?
Most locksmiths in Australia drive 2ltr 4
The hot ticket is the Sprinter. It is a full size van with a 5 cyl turbo diesel that gets about 25mpg. In the US and Canada it is marketed under the Dodge and the Freightliner nameplate, but elsewhere it is marketed under Mercedes Benz.
Reply to
Roger Shoaf
"Roger Shoaf" snipped-for-privacy@nospamsyix.com wrote in message
Yes Roger, the "Buck" is in full use here in the 'United States Of Australia' :-)
Yes, Mercedes Benze have put out a couple of work vans here, also Volkswagen have a nice 5 cyl van out. Trouble is they start at around $45,000 bare basic without shelving etc. You can get a new Toyota Hi Ace with extras for $29,000 and 5 year full warranty, my money's with Toyota !.
Reply to
Steve Paris
I agree totally mate.
I feel you should be able to fine the govt each time they waste our time, just like they fine us for things. Nothing worse than sitting at a 4 way intersection, with cars sitting still at 3 ways, and nobody at all driving where the green light is. Should be a matter of a simple phone call and the cash should be paid, and they should have to install pressure sensors at all intersections so this doesnt happen. No wonder i have no respect for the road rules.
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