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Newbie & Leaving The Car Unattended Q


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stewartm

Morning all,

 

I am prospective new owner, looking to finally scratch the itch of owning a Westie or something similar. I am heading in this direction from a long period on the occasionally wild ride that is RX8 ownership (I see at least one of the RX8OC chaps is here - hey Dommo 👋).

 

I would be looking for a car to fill the same role as the 8 = second car & track car, which leads on to my question. It would be my first time owning a car that was so physically accessible, which makes me think I would not want to leave it unattended in public. I am just wondering how that works out for other owners? Do you find you can and do leave the car unattended, outside of obvious bad areas? Are there any tactics or products you use to increase your confidence? Am I over thinking it?

 

Cheers Stew.

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CraigHew

Removable steering wheel helps,

Immobilizer too.

Usually try to park up within eye-sight when out on a run.

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Chris King

Welcome!

 

Personally, I try not to leave it unattended. 
 

But as someone who does 3k road miles and 6-7 track days a year it’s going to be inevitable. 
 

For short stops, it has an immobiliser and I take my removable wheel with me. For overnight stays on tour I have a large motorcycle chain and lock. I wrap that around the wheel and cage, a fellow owners car or lamppost if available!

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary

Welcome!

 

To a degree, yes, you're over thinking it, like most of us probably did at first.

 

Can you do things to improve your "confidence" and "comfort" levels, absolutely!

 

As you've already said, being aware of where you're parking is important. But beyond that, the biggest issue I and others have often found is people (not meaning harm), kids in particular, just getting a bit to close and hands on. More than a few Westfield (and similar) owners have come back to the car to find someone sat inside having their photo taken!

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary

I find daft as it sounds, something simple like having a tonneau cover over the cockpit, (or roof and side screens seems to completely halt this climb in tendency. (Mad really, as it's only some vinyl, held on with press studs!)

 

The other half of the equation is protecting your self from the less innocent passers by. Here there are a number of popular steps, immobilisers - the key-less Sterling Excel is extremely popular, as it's almost "invisible" in use. Removable steering wheels - they don't just aid getting in/out, specially with weather gear, but are a brilliant visual deterrent.  A big bike chain, for overnight stops, is one of my favourites, as a minimum, through a rear wheel and the roll bar, but where possible, round something solid too, like a lamp post, fence, or even another Westfield.

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Andrew O Byrne White - Ireland AO

Left mine unattended all over Europe while on big hikes without any issues. I've got an immobiliser fitted, and a removable steering wheel. Whenever it's not practical to take the steering wheel with me, I lock it under the bonnet. I try to avoid parking up in cities after I had someone set off the fire extinguisher once, but generally these cars draw so much attention that those with bad intentions stay away.

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Chris King
16 minutes ago, Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary said:

A big bike chain, for overnight stops, is one of my favourites, as a minimum, through a rear wheel and the roll bar, but where possible, round something solid too, like a lamp post, fence, or even another Westfield.

DejaVu 🤣

24 minutes ago, Chris King said:

For short stops, it has an immobiliser and I take my removable wheel with me. For overnight stays on tour I have a large motorcycle chain and lock. I wrap that around the wheel and cage, a fellow owners car or lamppost if available!

 

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ianali

I take me steering wheel off. Not much you can do if an idiot wants to play silly though is there! Having motorbikes things like this used to play on my mind. Nowadays I just don’t worry. Try having a narrowboat and being woken at 7AM in Stratford upon Avon by Chinese family’s sitting on deck taking photos. Or coming back from the pub and finding a near naked couple misusing the tiller...

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stewartm

Many thanks for the warm welcome and quick replies.

 

I had wondered about some of the approaches mentioned, so nice to get some sense I was thinking along the right lines/expectations.

 

Do insurance companies set any stipulations in this area or is it the case you need to shop around for a specialist to avoid anything above and beyond what you might get with any other car?

 

Quote

Try having a narrowboat and being woken at 7AM in Stratford upon Avon by Chinese family’s sitting on deck taking photos. Or coming back from the pub and finding a near naked couple misusing the tiller...

 

Haha! I have spent a fair bit of time on narrowboats (not an owner tho), and have so far been spared both of those :) Being set adrift by the crowd being kicked out at closing time from the boozer we were moored outside, is the only thing that sticks in memory.

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Chris King
1 minute ago, stewartm said:

Do insurance companies set any stipulations in this area

Not usually. Some ask for an immobiliser, but that’s as much as I’ve heard of. 

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Dave Eastwood (Gadgetman) - Club Secretary
14 minutes ago, stewartm said:

Do insurance companies set any stipulations in this area or is it the case you need to shop around for a specialist to avoid anything above and beyond what you might get with any other car?


Using a specialist that understands the kit car world is key, anyway, some mainstream brokers may have a go, but unlikely to be anywhere near as good value as the specialists.

 

11 minutes ago, Chris King said:

Not usually. Some ask for an immobiliser, but that’s as much as I’ve heard of. 


Yeah, never heard of more than this being asked.

 

Though note, it’s slightly different when the car is at home! If you list it as garaged, most companies will insist it is in the garage overnight, within a certain distance from home, or you won’t be covered for theft. Likewise, if it’s listed as stored on the drive, then it must be on the drive, overnight, not on the road. But this is just when the car is at home.

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AlanHodge
44 minutes ago, ianali said:

 Or coming back from the pub and finding a near naked couple misusing the tiller...


😂😂😂😂 always used to put the Tiller inside boat when not in use 😀😀

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OldStager

when i was into the classic car scene doing shows etc, coming back to your car and finding someone in it wasnt out of the ordinary. daves suggestion of putting the hood up cured that issue.

 

as for leaving the car unattended , i try not to, but realistically thats really hard to do , i have several electrical puzzles that have to be solved before you can start my car , although i am more worried about the jealous type who would perhaps key the car or damage it in other ways.

 

in all my westy years i havent read one one being actually removed from its parked location, perhaps someone could post if they know otherwise. i would imagine a car that is stolen would be in bits on ebay within hours, as selling a car like ours would be hard as they are too many identifying parts on them - all being different.

 

and our cars dont weigh much, so lifting onto a trailer would not be that hard, never seen it done but i bet 4 rugby players could lift it.

 

just my 2 pence worth.

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Davemk1

As others have said remove the steering wheel and put on a tonneau cover. In addition I have a battery cut off switch that has a key of sorts. I turn off the power and pocket the key.

 

This discourages the casual joy ride type guy....a determined car thief will have no trouble hotwiring it and using visegrips to steer but cars like this are not particularly attractive to thieves as they are hard to flip and not hugely valuable.

 

dave

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Jude - The Mad Widow

I've had an empty coke can thrown in and some soil once. 

 

In Europe you can find it by the crowd round it. We found a lad sat in it once! 

 

Pick and choose where you go in it and where you park it. Had ours for 20 ish years with only the above events. 

 

Good luck and look forward to seeing you at a meeting sometime. 

Jude 

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