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Retiree astronomy...making sense of it all (or what to sell and what to keep)

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#26 Myk Rian

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 10:17 AM



Okay, believe it or not, I meant this to be a positive post: Retire young! Cast your worries aside! Re-reading, it sounds maudlin. Sorry.

I agree with everything you said, and thank you for putting it so ellequently.

We retired @55 and are comfortable with our finances. As senior citizens we have made many friends and do many things, together or separately.
We have been enjoying this for 15 years.
I wish younger generations the best. It's a tougher world these days.


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#27 SeaBee1

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 11:04 AM

I had planned to wave by-by to my employer at 62 (I just turned 60...), but after a financial checkup, I realized I would have to give him 3 more years so I could get the ducks lined up. Still early as SSA wants me to hang on till 67, but I am willing to give up that small loss to get out at 65. And I may work part time... somewhere... I do like my employment, but I want to have my remaining years to do what I want to... while I can...

 

About the gear thing... as my sig line shows, I don't have anything to cull... three scopes and some eyepieces that I want to use more. As others have said, Jim, you are in an envious position, it's always nice to have choices. I am fortunate that I have equipment I like, and that I think will serve me well into my retirement, and that isn't by accident. Just like retirement plans, retirement activities should be carefully considered...

 

I have been planning for retirement for the last 30 years. I should have started sooner, but I was young and dumb. For the younger crew here, if you ain't shoveling money into your retirement yet, run, don't walk to your nearest financial planner and get started... (well, do some research and pick a good one...).

 

CB


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#28 Kevdog

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 11:05 AM

As for a "do it all vehicle", check out the new Subaru Ascent.    Mine should be here next week.   

 

8.7" ground clearance, 260hp 2.4L turbo engine, 5,000 lb towing capacity, seats 7 or 8.   When the middle and rear seats are folded down it has a huge cargo capacity.   My current outback can hold my 18" scope without even folding the seats down.   The Ascent with just the rear seats folded down is larger than that.

 

2 ramps let me just roll the 18" dob in and out of the back with ease.   It has a low/flat rear entry into the cargo area, so no "hump" to go over.

 

It has full time symmetrical AWD and is made for light/medium duty off-roading.

 

Yet it still gets 22mpg city and 26mpg highway, so you're not suffering for gas mileage and it drives like a car!  

 

So I will soon be able to tow my pop up camper and still take my 18" scope with me!


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#29 edwincjones

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 11:26 AM

"time marches on" and so do interests

 

I retired 3 years ago, and now find that my preretirement plans,

and interests, and circumstances have changed.

What I thought then is now different,

and what will be in my future will also most likely be different.

 

  STAY FLEXIBLE.

 

Do not put all your resources into one location , one hobby, one lifestyle.

 

edj

 

 

as to what optics to keep-only those that still give you joy


Edited by edwincjones, 12 September 2018 - 11:29 AM.

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#30 Crow Haven

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 12:08 PM

Something I like to use on the topic of sorting through the collection of telescopes, eyepieces, other assorted things... look at each and ask if it "sparks joy" -- if not, let it go. 


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#31 grif 678

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 12:32 PM

I envy all of you who have been able to retire with financial security, so that you can still be able to follow your hobby to the fullest. Both me and my wife lost our jobs a little earlier than we expected, so the retirement funds were not up to where they should have been. I was forced into early retirement after several company mergers, my wife place of employment moved away. About that time, our parents became ill, and we both have spent most of our time looking after them. We have children that have made some bad choices, and that dwindled what we did have down in savings even smaller. So with just a small amount in retirement, and both being on social security, following the lifestyle that we once had is impossible. I do have a modest amount of astronomical equipment, nothing elaborate, I can still do viewing when I have time. We had several possibilities down he road that would have been able to build our retirement back up, but health issues have taken care of that. A pretty good size farm with good acreage that was to be ours, but mother in law winds up in the nursing home now for two years, her insurance quit paying about a year ago, and now in about 3 months, the farm will be sold to pay for her nursing home bills.

But it is what it is, and compared to most of you, I am not in no way able to do like you. But then I see many who have lost everything, and I am glad to be in the position I am in. We have a Cat 4 storm bearing down on us now, and in about two days I will know if I have anything left,

So like one post above, enjoy what you do have, be thankful for what you do have, because one day we will be gone, and depending on your faith, you will be so much better off and these things will be insignificant in comparison.


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#32 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 12:37 PM

Jim

You have a lot to offer your employer, and your experience is priceless. Can you craft a part-time position with health benefits? That way every weekend might provide a 3-4 day foray into nature/ astronomy. 

 

John

Hi John.  Note that I did not lose a job.  I just didn't get a bigger role that I applied for.  Then they "placated" me by making my current job bigger.

 

Actually I don't want to work in retirement.  When I retire I plan on being 100% retired.  I don't like work, you see.  I just happen to be really good at doing certain things that are presently in high demand in my industry.  Not really smarts but rather luck - right place, right time, right skills. 

 

I'm not too worried about health benes, though that might change if I encounter some major health issues.  I just need to bridge myself to 65 from retirement (at 58) and I'll have 3-years of COBRA (on my own nickel of course, but really nice insurance) when I quit working.  I can actually cover the gap years from when COBRA runs out and guvmint sponsored Medicare coverage becomes available for purchase at 65, though it certainly won't be cheap.  Figure 4 years of $2k+ per month insurance, or about $100k in premiums over the gap period.  Fortunately my wife is 5 years older than I am and will be Medicare eligible when our COBRA ends.

 

The promotion to Director brings with it more compensation (salary, bonuses and stock awards), which is being squirreled away towards retirement, so the numbers actually look pretty darned good, provided that we leave the immediate area which we are willing to do.  We paid off our house eight years ago, so it's a big block of capital that will be re-purposed towards passive income production (probably more rental properties) when we downsize and relocate.  So knock on wood, I won't *have* to work when I call it quits.

 

The kinds of observing and camping I like to do often involves 2-days on the road each way (to and from) so what I really need is big blocks of ~2 weeks off at a time.  Practically speaking if I want to do 3 or 4 such trips a year, all the time needs to be my own.  Terri thinks I should set up a "Geezer Trips" business catering to average fitness elder adults with an interest in camping in remote locales, hiking native ruins, digging fossils and gemstones, landscape photography, fine (camp) food and wine, and looking at the night sky.  But that sounds a little too much like work to me.  :grin:

 

- Jim


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#33 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 12:49 PM

As for a "do it all vehicle", check out the new Subaru Ascent.    Mine should be here next week.   

 

8.7" ground clearance, 260hp 2.4L turbo engine, 5,000 lb towing capacity, seats 7 or 8.   When the middle and rear seats are folded down it has a huge cargo capacity.   My current outback can hold my 18" scope without even folding the seats down.   The Ascent with just the rear seats folded down is larger than that.

 

2 ramps let me just roll the 18" dob in and out of the back with ease.   It has a low/flat rear entry into the cargo area, so no "hump" to go over.

 

It has full time symmetrical AWD and is made for light/medium duty off-roading.

 

Yet it still gets 22mpg city and 26mpg highway, so you're not suffering for gas mileage and it drives like a car!  

 

So I will soon be able to tow my pop up camper and still take my 18" scope with me!

Yep, familiar with the Ascent.  Problem is the CVT equipped Subies don't cut it off-road.  The computers cut off the AWD fun to preserve the fragile CVT at the least convenient times compared to the same AWD system mated to the old torque converter (4 speed) automatic.  Essential for Subaru from a CAFE perspective (the CVT) but without the superior AWD capability compared to alternatives in the cross-over market, no longer unique from the perspective of Subie lovers who do off-road their rides.

 

Wonderful capacity though inside the Ascent for gear.  If I didn't like rutted dirt trails so much it's be a contender.  Though head to head I think I actually prefer the VW Atlas in that class, if only they would make AWD available with the 4-cylinder motor.  The Turbo 4 is better than the V6 in VW land in every respect.  As much cargo space as the Ascent has, the Atlas has even more, and the third row seats are more adult sized in the Atlas too, though I think of row 3 as occasional use in most vehicles.  The Subie will hold its value much better no doubt.

 

I'm actually kind of leaning towards Jeeps.  I like Wrangler 4 door models (Unlimiteds) but would only go that route if and when the diesel motor becomes available.  The new JL is better in every respect than the old JK but it's still crude compared to a polished crossover.  So the other model I am considering is a Grand Cherokee with the Adventure II group (gets you the dirt goodies like proper 18" rims and off road worthy tires an a matched spare, plus skid plates and better offroad electronic aids).  That model has the diesel available, though even without it the base V6 gets respectable fuel economy and knocks $4500 off the diesel price.  The Grand Cherokees are reasonable luxurious, more capable than any crossover off pavement, actually quieter on pavement than most cross-overs and have great long factory extended warranties available (my RAM 1500 has the MOPAR 10-year/1 million mile $100 deductible bumper to bumper warranty for example).

 

Regards,

 

Jim 


Edited by jrbarnett, 12 September 2018 - 02:09 PM.


#34 otocycle

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 01:47 PM

Something I like to use on the topic of sorting through the collection of telescopes, eyepieces, other assorted things... look at each and ask if it "sparks joy" -- if not, let it go. 

 

Indeed...I specifically saved the 6" mirror I made from an Edmund Scientific kit back in 1971 for a retirement rebuild, circling back to the very beginning.   My dear wife now understands and accepts that "till death do you part" includes lots of telescopes and other astro hoarding.  ( I could throw the old pitch lap mat away...probably won't need that anymore !)


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#35 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 02:11 PM

Something I like to use on the topic of sorting through the collection of telescopes, eyepieces, other assorted things... look at each and ask if it "sparks joy" -- if not, let it go. 

Sadly too low of a bar for me.  Every little tidbit I have that is associated with the hobby sparks a little joy inside.  :grin:  I'll be making Sophie's Choice, but 1000x times over.

 

- Jim


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#36 ensign

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 04:26 PM

I retired two years ago and have been observing about as much as I did pre-retirement.  I have other hobbies - or avocations - that I can now put more time into.

 

I anticipated retirement and a reduced income in my choice of gear in the years leading up to leaving employment.  The subsequent reduction in income means that expensive gear purchases are pretty much a thing of the past.

 

So I’ve settled on a 9.25 Edge for deep sky at dark sites, an Equinox 120 (mainly because everyone needs a decent refractor), a Mallincam DSc coupled with a C8 XLT and an Ioptron Minitower for EAA, and an Equinox 80 that has multiple roles - it’s dual mounted with the Edge on a Twilight II mount and acts as a wide field companion to the cat as well as assisting as a finder.  And it’s a good, airline portable travel scope.

 

As to vehicles, I can haul any particular setup handily in my Mustang, and can reach Bortle class 1 skies without traveling off pavement.  So I get to keep my retirement gift to myself instead of trading it in on something more practical.grin.gif


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#37 dr.who

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 04:27 PM

A) Love love love the Jeep platform. I had a GC Laredo that went everywhere from the beach sands to deep into BLM land off road and did fine on freeway and surface. Was classy enough to be OK client's too. I wanted the diesel version but it wasn't around in the US when I had to replace my old hybrid Camry because of a auto accident. And all the other diesel SUV's were out of production because of the whole VW mess. A diesel engine is like a lawn mower. It just goes. Really like the idea. But as I said it wasn't available so I went Honda Pilot instead. I have the room but not the off road capacity or the diesel. 

 

B) Perhaps consider what Jon did. Buying a house that is in dark skies. Save for the caveat that it is also in an area you like to hike, fossil hunt, etc. Best of all worlds. You can base out of it and enjoy the dark skies for extended periods without having to pay someone else to do so or pack everything up at the end of the trip.


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#38 Kevdog

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 05:56 PM

Yep, familiar with the Ascent.  Problem is the CVT equipped Subies don't cut it off-road.  The computers cut off the AWD fun to preserve the fragile CVT at the least convenient times compared to the same AWD system mated to the old torque converter (4 speed) automatic.  Essential for Subaru from a CAFE perspective (the CVT) but without the superior AWD capability compared to alternatives in the cross-over market, no longer unique from the perspective of Subie lovers who do off-road their rides.

 

I'm curious where your info on the Subie CVT came from?    Everything I've read and done says the Subie CVT is more than up to the task.   And with the XMode for when it gets really dicey (low speed and slippy) it's very capable.   Curious on a link for your info.

 

I've got a buddy with a 4Runner and we plan to go out hitting off road spots in AZ and NM :D

 

I've only found links like this and forum/blog articles from people going everywhere in them.

https://www.guideaut...-road-on-point/



#39 BillP

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 09:03 PM

The kinds of observing and camping I like to do often involves 2-days on the road each way (to and from) so what I really need is big blocks of ~2 weeks off at a time.  Practically speaking if I want to do 3 or 4 such trips a year, all the time needs to be my own.  Terri thinks I should set up a "Geezer Trips" business catering to average fitness elder adults with an interest in camping in remote locales, hiking native ruins, digging fossils and gemstones, landscape photography, fine (camp) food and wine, and looking at the night sky.  But that sounds a little too much like work to me.  grin.gif

 

 

Hmmmm....Geezer Trip.  Yes, work.  But not so much of you scope it out and do it at just one location.  Do it once a year making the arrangements with all the locals in whatever area you choose.  Would not be so much work if done just once a year at a set venue.  Could be quite fun actually.  Might be something foreign visitors might like as well to get a taste of the American West, History, Ghost Towns, Fossils, and of course what a Dark Sky looks like!  You do run most excellent outings Jim!!


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#40 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 10:52 PM

I'm curious where your info on the Subie CVT came from?    Everything I've read and done says the Subie CVT is more than up to the task.   And with the XMode for when it gets really dicey (low speed and slippy) it's very capable.   Curious on a link for your info.

 

I've got a buddy with a 4Runner and we plan to go out hitting off road spots in AZ and NM laugh.gif

 

I've only found links like this and forum/blog articles from people going everywhere in them.

https://www.guideaut...-road-on-point/

1.  My own experiences with my 2013 Outback vs. my 2007 Forester over many of the same trails, and...

 

2.  The fail of the current Outback in the TFL off-road test video.  So disappointing in fact that the Subaru Mafia protested the review site until they retested the Outback with a professional offroad driver.  TFL did that and while the vehicle eventually made it further up the trail than in the first test it was ugly and the vehicle was pretty badly damaged cosmetically in the process.

 

The beauty of the old Subarus was that while underpowered the stout little transmission managed to put that modest power through the AWD system to the wheels.  Not so the new CVT equipped units.  You can see and feel power being cut when a wheel starts to spin, with no corresponding transfer of that power to another wheel.  That's all about keeping the goo in the CVT from vaporizing.

 

New Outback vs. bone stock 1991 Jeep Cherokee:  https://video.search...bb8&action=view

 

Jim


Edited by jrbarnett, 12 September 2018 - 10:55 PM.


#41 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 10:53 PM

Hmmmm....Geezer Trip.  Yes, work.  But not so much of you scope it out and do it at just one location.  Do it once a year making the arrangements with all the locals in whatever area you choose.  Would not be so much work if done just once a year at a set venue.  Could be quite fun actually.  Might be something foreign visitors might like as well to get a taste of the American West, History, Ghost Towns, Fossils, and of course what a Dark Sky looks like!  You do run most excellent outings Jim!!

Bill, I think the excellence of the outings turn most on the excellence of the company.  We tend to get a good mix of people.

 

smile.gif

 

- Jim


Edited by jrbarnett, 12 September 2018 - 10:54 PM.

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#42 jrbarnett

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Posted 12 September 2018 - 11:41 PM

A) Love love love the Jeep platform. I had a GC Laredo that went everywhere from the beach sands to deep into BLM land off road and did fine on freeway and surface. Was classy enough to be OK client's too. I wanted the diesel version but it wasn't around in the US when I had to replace my old hybrid Camry because of a auto accident. And all the other diesel SUV's were out of production because of the whole VW mess. A diesel engine is like a lawn mower. It just goes. Really like the idea. But as I said it wasn't available so I went Honda Pilot instead. I have the room but not the off road capacity or the diesel. 

 

B) Perhaps consider what Jon did. Buying a house that is in dark skies. Save for the caveat that it is also in an area you like to hike, fossil hunt, etc. Best of all worlds. You can base out of it and enjoy the dark skies for extended periods without having to pay someone else to do so or pack everything up at the end of the trip.

I like diesels in general, but in this case the diesel option is $4500 more than the base V6 ($3500 in CA through mid October due to an incentive).  It adds towing capacity, a bit better performance (loads of torque lower in the rev range), etc., but it also adds dependency on urea for emissions, fewer filling stations, and a bit of cold engine clatter.  The roadtrip cruising range difference is 615 miles for the stock V6  vs. 688 miles for the diesel, per 26 gallon tank full.

 

The V6 is the most common of MOPAR engines too.  Parts are plentiful and cheap.  The diesel is an Italian job mated to a German transmission.  I imagine quite costly when repairs eventually are needed.  So I am of a divided mind on this one.  I do love Jeep pricing though.  It's like American full sized truck pricing.  The sticker shows a ludicrously high MSRP, insanely too high for the quality of the vehicle.  The street price, though, is between $8 and $11k under MSRP on the Grand Cherokees, which puts them in the same price range as other comparably equipped mid-sized SUVs.

 

The current Grand Cherokee was co-designed by Daimler and share its bones with the last Mercedes GL SUV (since superseded).  It's a well-designed, stiff, durable platform.  But like most older non-FWD crossover platforms is a little shy on cargo space compared to more modern designs (like your Pilot).  But I do like its combination of comfort, capability and reasonable fuel economy for such a heavy vehicle.

 

We'll see.  I do want to get a look at the upcoming RAV4.  It will have better rough road capability, a non-CVT 8-speed transmission, but sadly no turbo and no Android Auto capability.  Hyundai also has a diesel coming next year in its Santa Fe released this year with standard and turbo non-diesel  motors.  Rumor has it that Mazda's new diesel for its CX-5 cute ute has been approved by California regulators too. 

 

Regards,

 

Jim 



#43 Astroman007

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 12:55 AM

mercedes-benz-g63-crazy-colour-main_678x

 

Mercedes G-Class. waytogo.gif


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#44 Kevdog

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 01:05 AM

1.  My own experiences with my 2013 Outback vs. my 2007 Forester over many of the same trails, and...

 

2.  The fail of the current Outback in the TFL off-road test video.  So disappointing in fact that the Subaru Mafia protested the review site until they retested the Outback with a professional offroad driver.  TFL did that and while the vehicle eventually made it further up the trail than in the first test it was ugly and the vehicle was pretty badly damaged cosmetically in the process.

 

The beauty of the old Subarus was that while underpowered the stout little transmission managed to put that modest power through the AWD system to the wheels.  Not so the new CVT equipped units.  You can see and feel power being cut when a wheel starts to spin, with no corresponding transfer of that power to another wheel.  That's all about keeping the goo in the CVT from vaporizing.

 

New Outback vs. bone stock 1991 Jeep Cherokee:  https://video.search...bb8&action=view

 

Jim

 

Thanks for the link!   Great video.   That is some pretty heavy rutting and it looks like very few did actually make it up.

 

Will be curious to see if the Ascent with more power fairs better.  Will still be fun for where I plan on going.



#45 Jon Isaacs

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:29 AM

Just a couple of thoughts:

 

When I was 60, I could beat half the field in a 20km time trial and that meant beating riders in their 20s, 30s.. At 70, I'm not sure I could even finish a 20km ride. For me, the decade of my 60s is really about finding out what aging is really about. 

 

Each year, the nights gets colder, the winds stronger, comforts become more important. Recovery takes longer, I have less energy.  

 

They say you're as young as you think you are but in my mind I still think think like I'm 25, my body has different ideas. At 60, I could convince my body I was still 30. At 70, my body let's me know otherwise.

 

Francis and I are on our way home from a week spent camping in our 32 year old motor home on the Navago reservation.  I had some wonderful nights spent with the 12.5 inch and my NP-101.  At 60, tenting and remote sites seemed attractive, at 70, I'll take a loving wife and shelter from the storm.

 

Jon


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#46 dr.who

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:48 AM

I like diesels in general, but in this case the diesel option is $4500 more than the base V6 ($3500 in CA through mid October due to an incentive).  It adds towing capacity, a bit better performance (loads of torque lower in the rev range), etc., but it also adds dependency on urea for emissions, fewer filling stations, and a bit of cold engine clatter.  The roadtrip cruising range difference is 615 miles for the stock V6  vs. 688 miles for the diesel, per 26 gallon tank full.


Wow! That MUCH for the gas and that little a difference for the diesel!?! My old GCL got about 350 miles to the tank and it was the 6 with a 20 gallon tank (or was it 18? I can't remember). That is pretty amazing and drops the value add of the diesel substantially.
 

The V6 is the most common of MOPAR engines too.  Parts are plentiful and cheap.  The diesel is an Italian job mated to a German transmission.  I imagine quite costly when repairs eventually are needed.  So I am of a divided mind on this one.  I do love Jeep pricing though.  It's like American full sized truck pricing.  The sticker shows a ludicrously high MSRP, insanely too high for the quality of the vehicle.  The street price, though, is between $8 and $11k under MSRP on the Grand Cherokees, which puts them in the same price range as other comparably equipped mid-sized SUVs.


Yes. Mine was the 6. And as you said it was stupid simple to maintain and repair. Loved that about it. Again like a lawnmower engine. Italian with German... Nothing good can come from that match up. You are going to have the German desire for complexity and tight spaces coupled with the Fix It Again Tomorrow/Tony (FIAT) challenges of an Italian made item...
 

The current Grand Cherokee was co-designed by Daimler and share its bones with the last Mercedes GL SUV (since superseded).  It's a well-designed, stiff, durable platform.  But like most older non-FWD crossover platforms is a little shy on cargo space compared to more modern designs (like your Pilot).  But I do like its combination of comfort, capability and reasonable fuel economy for such a heavy vehicle.


This part of the German engineering is a good thing. My version was not. And I think I was the only person in Southern California who actually took the Jeep off road instead of a using it as a cool soccer mom car. It did have great cargo space and there were many times when I was out in the boonies of BLM and the weather got cold enough that that fire wasn't cutting it that I would lower the rear seats and sleep in the back. I am just shy of 2 meters tall and could stretch out comfortably.


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#47 dr.who

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 10:54 AM

We'll see.  I do want to get a look at the upcoming RAV4.  It will have better rough road capability, a non-CVT 8-speed transmission, but sadly no turbo and no Android Auto capability.  Hyundai also has a diesel coming next year in its Santa Fe released this year with standard and turbo non-diesel  motors.  Rumor has it that Mazda's new diesel for its CX-5 cute ute has been approved by California regulators too. 

 

Regards,

 

Jim 

 

The only thing that bothers me about California regulations is what you mentioned. Another option would be to find a EU or out of state model with 8,000 miles on it then bring it in to California. It will give you a fair discount off MSRP and it gets you around the California emissions criteria since it is a used vehicle. My friend and I were both considering this option a few years ago. Not sure if it has changed. Means you can still get a nice vehicle without the jiggery pokery that comes with California regulations. 


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#48 StarWolf57

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 02:42 PM

My current job will be coming to an end next month. I'll be 61 in December and am on the fence about taking early retirement or trying to work for another couple of years. Given that I've worked 7 days a week for the last 8 years, my wife would prefer that I retire. That would allow us to have some time together before we get "old" :) Also, a health scare a few years ago reminded us that you never know when your number is up. We have reasonable savings and no debt (house is paid for), so with a little careful planning, it would be doable.

 

I'm glad I was able to acquire the equipment I have, as future purchases will few and far between. The prospect of observing any time I want is almost like a dream come true, given how hard it was in the past. I would really like to get involved in outreach too, trying to get more kids interested in science.

 

I had a really nice F150 SCrew (4WD), but it was just too big and expensive to use as a daily driver. It was kind of ponderous off-road as well - just too big and heavy. I downsized to a 2018 Colorado (Z71 4WD) and it's pretty much perfect for me as a daily driver/hauler/towing/astro vehicle. More nimble off-road as well. Not quite as luxurious as the $55K Ford, but fine for me and lot less expensive to own. No more worries about parking in underground structures either ;)


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#49 BillP

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 03:55 PM

Bill, I think the excellence of the outings turn most on the excellence of the company.  We tend to get a good mix of people.

 

smile.gif

 

- Jim

 

While I do agree all the folks are quite nice...your planning and leadership is really what makes it a special/magical happening (and the clear weather which you give us a better shot at having consulting the local climate for best windows) bow.gif


Edited by BillP, 13 September 2018 - 03:55 PM.


#50 RAKing

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Posted 13 September 2018 - 05:09 PM

I spent the last half of my working career in the high tech world and enjoyed the monetary (and other) benefits.  One of the benefits was a "Phased Retirement" program that allowed us to gradually cut our working time and start drawing from our retirement funds.

 

I gradually phased down to 24 hours a week, then pulled the plug in 2016.  I have a great financial planner, so my retirement income is fine, every day is Saturday, and I love every minute of each day. cool.gif

 

Scopes, eyepieces, cars, trucks - whatever you want to use, just go ahead as long as you can justify it to yourself.  I am now a much tougher judge of things I want to buy or use than I was when my income was up in the "very comfortable" range.  I spend more time analyzing and don't buy as much on impulse.  My "hobby fund" now has tighter limits.

 

I have owned a TEC 140 for many years as well as a C925 SCT - but I haven't been able to use either one for a while due to a couple of recent spinal fusions.  I have been able to enjoy my smaller scopes (a little TEC Mak and a Sky-Watcher 120ED), so my astro needs are covered very well.  IIRC, you have a number of smaller and lighter scopes.  You might want to keep a couple around - just in case.

 

I wish you the best and hope your retirement works out just as well as you dreamed it would.  We can only ride on this planet for a limited number of laps around the sun, so enjoy the ride!  waytogo.gif   

 

Cheers,

 

Ron


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