NeelSanghi.com Mini OS
Hey everyone! Thanks for coming to my website.
Check back often, as the development team continues to release the site it will be evolving rapidly. Feel free to call my cellphone (228) 234-NEEL.
-- Neel K. Sanghi
Neel Mobile FleetMy primary transport vehicle is now and again the heavily abused 1991 Nissan Sentra:
This article was originally written for a weblog on June 26, 2005. The milage has of course increased to 274K miles, among a few other things.
The Neel Mobile"The Neel Mobile" - Amphibious Transporter/Escape Pod:
This is my pimp ride, the Neel Mobile. It has been sometimes dubbed the duracar, and quite justifiably! Most of it is a 1991 Nissan Sentra, with a 1.6L engine (the rest is other year sentra parts, dodge stealth parts, subaru parts, custom and universal aftermarket accessories). It has 240,000+ miles on it, and drives like new. I will probably even get another 240K out of it! I do my own automotive work so you can say I have an onboard mechanic.
It has taken me where no man has gone before. Among many offroad adventures, I have actually blazed trails with this in the woods! I even drive it straight into the clay pits back in Mississippi. Getting stuck offroad has happened but is a rare occurance. Using available resources (sticks, boat paddles, shovel), careful evaluation, physics, and technique (ie, power braking to freeze the differential and get both wheels spinning) I have always managed to power out of the situation. I enjoy the challenge of offroad manuevering and also getting the vehicle in and out of precarious situations. There have been a few times where I had to rescue other vehicles using the duracar.I can cruise at 90MPH with the canoe on top! I have since replaced the 17' canoe with a 14' aluminium jon boat which means I can't cruise at super highspeeds with the boat on top, but I can seat more people in the boat! (I don't always keep the boats on top.)
The luggage rack (which is not visible in this picture) came from a Subaru ($13.50 from the junkyard) and has been used to haul my 28' extension ladder and 6' A frame ladders also at death defying speeds from base camp to work site. I have also placed over 500lbs. of steel on the rack, not to mention other matierals. The rack also at one time toted a mini-motorized land transport vehicle with a 5hp engine. The rack also aides in stunt training.
I also (as of 12-04) have installed trailer hitch on it, and I towed well over 1500lbs. at one time without a transmission cooler! Before I even had the trailer hitch I would drag large tree trunks out of the woods for wood carving and unblock roadways by dragging trees out of the way.
In anticipation of hurricane Ivan, the Neel Mobile was configured as an emergency response unit complete with life preservers. Closer to Ivan's arrival my calculations suggested I abandon the mission. The Neel Mobile then rapidly changed to escape pod function.
I have trained and can perform many stunts with the Neel Mobile. If you would like to arrange a live, or filmed exibihtion please contact me and I will put you in touch with my manager. Some footage is being arranged for public viewing through www.sanghi.tv in the near future.
Other accessories not shown: backup land transport device (my bicycle) and rear multipurpose loading & bike rack, and trailer hitch.
Partial building frame strapped to the top of a heavily abused 1991 Nissan Sentra using tiedown straps. (above picture) ready to make its 20+ mile journey to the new research and development test site in Hurricane Katrina ravaged Long Beach, Mississippi.
Heater ProjectObjective: To heat the cab of a car without replacing OEM heatercore.
Heater core and miscallaneous parts used to make a heater core (above left) same image color coded for easy identification of components (above right); valve (red dot); heater core (green dot); aluminum grounding wire (blue dots); 12V fan (yellow dot)
This project was done in December 2005. It was ridiculously cold in South Mississippi. I had previously plugged my heater core hoses on the 1991 Nissan Sentra due to a leak that appeared only after flushing the cooling system using solvent after changing the water pump just before Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulfcoast.
Changing the OEM heatercore was a rather involved and time consuming job that required evacuating the R12 refridgerant from the air conditioning system and removing the entire dashboard. The Environmental Protection Agency requires that this refridgerant be collected into an EPA certified storage container. This requires and EPA certified air condition expert to do this, and would again require EPA certified personnel to restore the R12 unless I decided to convert the A/C from R12 to R134a refridgerant. Which if done properly requires many additional components to be changed. Needless to say this drives up the cost and time required for the repair.
The cost of the OEM heatercore was around $170. This doesn't include labor, or miscallaneous or unforeseen expenses. Time to remove a heatercore from the same model car from a junkyard would be double the labor required.
The $70 Solution: To reroute the cooling system hoses through the firewall and into a heatercore inside the cab, and to use a fan (yellow dot in above picture) to circulate air over the fins of the heater core (green dot in above picture) to transfer the heat into air of the cab. The valve (red dot in above picture) was $20+ and installed to restrict the flow of heated water into the core to regulate temperature inside the cab. The valve leaked at variable settings, and I didn't feel like replacing or modifying the valve because it would have required that I drain the coolant (antifreeze and water) which I didn't have to do for the initial installation. The heater core itself was around $36 new. It was for an American made vehicle but that didn't matter. Only the size of the fittings mattered to match the ID (inside diameter) of the original heater core hose.
Other than the time sourcing the miscellaneous parts, the time required to drill two holes through my firewall and adapt some hose fittings was less than a couple of hours. The aluminum grounding wire was found in my warehouse in the DBS installation products, it is soft flexible non-corrisive wire used to ground satellite dishes, I used this to fasten the blower fan to the heater core.
If you are going to build one of these you may have trouble finding grommets to protect the soft rubber hose from the sharp jagged metal edges of the firewall. A tear in the hose means the car would lose coolant and could potentially overheat leading to immobilization or worse a cracked or warped cylinder head or blown gasket. Instead of grommets I used 90° elbow connectors in the firewall and attach the rubber hoses to those.