Banks Insider News

What a Long, Strange Trip its Been

Throwing a bunch of guys together for a seven day, 1,700-mile tour is bound to have its ups and downs. This sign found in Joe’s Crab Shack in Kissimmee, Florida on the last day of Power Tour says it all. The merry bunch of Banks employees (and journalists) that traveled with us now share a common bond and many memories that will last a lifetime.

We did the ‘long haul’ with virtually no problems to speak of and the 2005 Hot rod Magazine Power Tour was a great success. It was an excellent way for Gale Banks Engineering to meet its customers and make new friends and champions for our current and future products.

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Bosch DCX Tech Fair or “Drive Sample Vehicles Like You Stole Them!”

I know… it’s been a while since I’ve written, but I’ve got a good excuse. No, really… I do. See, I went on the Hot Rod Power Tour and before that, Bosch’s DCX Tech Fair. Vehicles, meetings, logistics, details and way too many “what ifs” make Johnny a dull boy. It’s as if I’ve been a cross between the proverbial one-legged man in a butt-kicking contest spliced with a chicken with its head cut off. Sort of a one-legged chicken-man with no head trying to kick some butt if you will. See the problem?

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Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour: A Huge Success!

Perhaps you’ve noticed the lack of blogs from all of us during Power Tour? The days went by like lightning. There was, literally, no time to blog. Here’s how our tour went.

Day one:
Wake up (5:30 a.m.); shower; shave; meet in hotel lobby (7:00 a.m.); quick breakfast (7:15 a.m.); schlep bags to the truck-of-the-day (8:00 a.m.); drive to event city (usually around 300 miles); park truck at booth (2:00 p.m.); get swarmed by gawkers (2:01 p.m.); talk to people about Banks products (2:01-8:00 p.m.); pack up trailer (8:00 p.m.); eat dinner (9:00 p.m.); sleep (10:30 p.m.); zzz

Repeat six times.

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Air Travel Hell: Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour (Pre-Tour)

4:44 a.m.
Okay, the trip stared off badly when the shuttle van that was supposed to pick me up at 4:00 a.m. hadn’t arrived by 4:30. When I called, they told me, “oh, our driver just now told us he was experiencing vehicle trouble…” Great. What about my ride to the airport?

The shuttle company called a cab for me and my $45 trip to the airport wound up costing $68.30. The shuttle company is going to pay me the difference. Yea – there’s money I won’t be seeing again anytime soon. The only saving grace was Richard, my taxi driver, was also an Armenian philosopher. I got an Armenian history lesson on the drive to the airport. Interesting.

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Banks Sidewinder All-Terrains are Ready to GO!

It’s been a real thrash for the past few weeks getting ready for Hot Rod Magazine’s Power Tour. You may have noticed the lack of new blogs recently. Sorry, but we’ve all been swamped. Imagine the logistics and man-hours involved in getting five trucks ready for the 1500-mile Power Tour…

Anyway, we now have all three 2005 Banks Sidewinder All-Terrain trucks finished and ready for Power Tour. Banks “Rat Rod” Shop Truck and Banks Bonneville Record-Holding Dodge Dakota are also ready to fly.

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Fuel Economy Methods: Part One

How do you calculate fuel economy? I read so many different claims about fuel economy, and I keep coming back to wondering how people arrive at their data. For instance, on the diesel forums it is not uncommon to see someone claim 24 MPG in a diesel pickup. And yet I have personally driven a Duramax LLY with a heavy load up a grade, and watching the digital mileage indicator, I have seen instantaneous readings as low as 3 MPG. That’s a huge swing.

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Cooling That Powerful Itch

Some tough questions should be asked when venturing into the world of diesel power: Are you shopping for a product to speed up your truck for quick 0 to 60 sprints and quarter mile bragging rights, or are you looking to enhance its towing brawn? Is there a way to get both? Just why does my truck need to blow plumes of black smoke to make power, and what is it really doing to the engine?

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The President Digs Diesel

President Bush told a business group last Wednesday (April 27, 2005) that anti-pollution measures for diesel “will remove more than 90 percent of the sulfur in diesel fuel by 2010.” He also announced plans to provide similar tax credits to those already in place for hybrid and fuel cell vehicles for consumers who purchase light-duty clean diesel cars and trucks.

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A Ragin’ Good Read

I just finished reading an article in the May 2005 issue of Four Wheeler magazine entitled “Rage Against the Machine.” Awesome! Robin Stover details the success of Kent Kroeker’s virtually stock Dodge truck in the 2004 Baja 1000 (http://www.koreperformance.com). Check out this preview article on Four Wheeler online: (http://www.fourwheeler.com/brandpages/129_0411_500/) This adventure impresses me for many reason’s, but I think I just love to absorb as much off-road racing as I can, and this article offers a healthy dose of it.

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