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    Thread: Any worse ergonomics fail than the GM hazard switches from the 1980s?

    1. Member Smokin Joe's Avatar
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      10-02-2012 11:51 PM #106
      Quote Originally Posted by GoFaster View Post
      ... unless you lived in the snow/salt belt, in which case the snow that you drag in with your boots melts while you are driving and then freezes into the carpet and into that high-beam switch when you park the car, and salt gets into the switch and buggers it up. Dumb place to put anything electrical whatsoever.
      Just one more reason not to live in a place that gets snow.

    2. 10-03-2012 12:11 AM #107
      Quote Originally Posted by patrickvr6 View Post
      porscheclimatecontrolwitchcraft.jpg
      Seriously what is with the Germans and unfathomable climate controls? A couple from the 70s-80s era:

      W116:


      E9

    3. Member MAG58's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:13 AM #108
      Quote Originally Posted by cheap sunglasses View Post
      Seriously what is with the Germans and unfathomable climate controls? A couple from the 70s-80s era:

      W116:
      On the upswing these at least work. On the later temp-matic cars it may have had some big ol' pushbuttons but there was a pretty good chance that depending on what mood your car was in that day it was going to give you the finger and just blast hot air out of every vent... on a 100 degree day...because it can.

    4. Member vasillalov's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:16 AM #109
      Quote Originally Posted by choochoo View Post
      not worse than those old GM hazard switches
      but I find this really annoying on our E90.
      This is the only unlock button in the car.

      Would it really kill them to put one on the driver & passenger door??? Plus it's tiny.
      I think you are complaining a bit too much. Why:

      1. You have another unlock button. Its on your key fob
      2. You can program the car to unlock your doors when the keyfob is pulled out of the receptacle. You have a choice of just the driver door or all 4.

      What more do you want?
      Quote Originally Posted by MAG58 View Post
      Please consider your audience before saying something sensible. 80% of TCL drivers were actually banned from Formula 1 for being too fast.
      A turbocharger is a device which exhaust gases go in, witchcraft happens, and then you go faster.

    5. Member windycityvdub's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:19 AM #110
      Hazard placement win: R56 MINI. Right on top of the speedometer...when I had to put them on suddenly on I40 yesterday when the car in front of me wrecked and 3 lanes had to come to a grinding halt, all I had to do was blindly slap the top of the dash.


      Pic of accident and my car with hazards:

      The dump truck nearly split that Impala in half.


      Also...what's up with the blink rate of the hazards changing on some cars depending if the key is on or not? When the key is on, engine running, the hazards blink at normal pace...but with the car off, they blink quicker. What's the reasoning for that?

    6. Member vasillalov's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:21 AM #111
      Quote Originally Posted by Lifelong Obsession View Post
      I will second the E90 cupholders. Hot drinks above the passenger's knee where they will inevitably bump it when exiting the car - gee, what could go wrong there?
      Didn't it occur to you that the Germans perhaps decided to develop (quite unsuccessfully) sense of humor overnight? All they wanted to do is teach the fat 'Muricans not to eat and drink in their cars but rather sit down in a cafe/restaurant like normal people around the world and enjoy their drink/food.

      Yes, I own an E90 and I do agree: the cupholders on this car are a joke. They are not designed to hold anything bigger than a 12 oz drink. Your best bet are soda cans. They fit perfectly and there is much smaller chance of liquids splashing onto you or the center console.
      Quote Originally Posted by MAG58 View Post
      Please consider your audience before saying something sensible. 80% of TCL drivers were actually banned from Formula 1 for being too fast.
      A turbocharger is a device which exhaust gases go in, witchcraft happens, and then you go faster.

    7. Member wantacad's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:25 AM #112
      Quote Originally Posted by gti_matt View Post
      VW T4 and Mk3 drivers who have the hazard switch on top of the column.

      This to me is a worse offender than the GM switch.




      The T4 was a pretty big offender too in that the switch is tall and narrow and is easy to bump while wiping down the cluster and dash and can break off too easily.

      I don't know why they treated hazard lights so differently from any other switchable electric consumer with respect to ergo.
      I don't know for what reason but some MK2's have this as well . why didn't VW keep it on the dash!?!
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      You're new here but don't be a DORK.....
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      I have a great idea, upgrade to the big 3: periods, commas and capital letters! I realize I'm old but I cannot read some of this s**t.

    8. Senior Member ValveCoverGasket's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:33 AM #113
      i nominate any switches around the cluster on a discovery 1 or 2




      impossible to see around the steering wheel to know which switch is where, and whether theyre pressed or not.

    9. 10-03-2012 01:01 AM #114
      Quote Originally Posted by ATL_Av8r View Post
      God dammit I hate when idiots do this. The LAST thing I need is everybody on the road turning on their hazards in the rain so that every raindrop on the windshield magnifies the flashing light. **** people that do that....I hope they crash
      +1. And i find it makes it difficult to distinguish between people sitting on the side of the road with their hazards on or if they're driving with they're hazards.

    10. Moderator rs4-380's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 01:17 AM #115
      Quote Originally Posted by patrickvr6 View Post
      I present the air cooled 911 climate control system. Controls are scattered all over the car and it is absolutely mystifying. The only saving grace is that no matter where you put all those switches nothing really changes.

      x48. never been able to remotely figure it out.
      Dave

    11. Member unimogken's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 05:21 AM #116
      Quote Originally Posted by Big Dac With Fries View Post
      I see this and raise you the trunk release mechanism/remote lever of an '80s Audi Coupe.



      I can't even find a picture of the damn thing, it's so obscure.

      In case you're wondering, it's in the B-pillar. You've got to open the door, probably exit the car, and then pull the little lever to open the trunk.
      Thought i'd help you out with the picture! Hehe


      Oh and some of you guys will complain about anything!
      I really wish everyone would update their location in their profile!

      Someone buy my car already!!

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    12. 10-03-2012 09:03 AM #117
      I wonder who was the idiot at Honda/Acura who decided to change the trunk opening mechanism on the Integra from the 94-97 models to the 98-01 models. The previous 94-97 had a simple cable operated hatch you can open from the inside, or you can turn the key and it opens. Then for some reason on the 98-01 models, they remove the interior cable mechanism with a electronic actuator that fails and costs a lot to fix, when I bought my 2000 this year, the trunk was actually working for the first month or so, then out of nowhere I couldn't open it. The only way to open it is to remove the key and use the backup method of turning the key, holding it for a bit and lifting the hatch.

      I'll have to try this fix
      http://www.team-integra.net/forum/bl...-actuator.html

    13. Member geofftii2002's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:03 AM #118
      Alfa Romeo 75/Milano power window switches. They are mounted in the ceiling. I can imagine people pulling up to toll booths, the cockpit a flurry of activity as they try to figure out how the hell to put the window down. Gloriously Italianate.




      There's also the GM Tilt column. So many hot rodders love to boast "yeah, it's got a big block, a/c, tilt, cruise, all the goodies..."

      But that GM Tilt column is awful! There are three positions available for the steering wheel:

      1. Horizontal like a bus (aka, the fat guy setting)
      2. Sort of okay but always just a few degrees from where you really want it
      3. Sitting in your balls (really, does anyone EVER use that position??)


      Yet they used that bloody mechanism for eons. I never understood it.

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    14. Member 1985Jetta's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:11 AM #119
      The tilt column isn't that bad to me

    15. Member 200HP4dr's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:13 AM #120
      Quote Originally Posted by unimogken View Post
      Thought i'd help you out with the picture! Hehe


      The brilliant thing about the switch location on the Audi coupe was that they knew all of the hatch struts would fail, and that if you stretch your arms really far, you can flip the switch and hold the hatch up just enough to get it open.

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    16. Geriatric Member AKADriver's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:21 AM #121
      Quote Originally Posted by Chmeeee View Post
      Notice that the mist function and the washer function have the same symbol? That combined the fact that the mist function uses the control that most cars use for the washer (pull stalk) resulted in my changing out a perfectly good washer fluid pump.
      I actually got caught by that one when test-driving an old beater Impreza. I came home, mentioned that the car had a bad washer pump, and my wife just started laughing and asked me if I used the stalk the right way (she drives a Forester).

      The Citation wasn't the first GM with the vertical radio, the C2 Corvette had one too. It's not really ergonomically bad for a pushbutton AM/FM like that, it just means the presets go top to bottom, volume on top, tune on the bottom. The last year or two of the Citation got the same basic dash layout as the A-body cars (Celebrity, etc) and a standard GM 1.5-DIN radio.
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    17. Member GI-JOE's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:53 AM #122
      I've always hated the trunk and fuel door switches in older fords. You had to lean over, open the glove box and then press a tiny button.


    18. Member McBanagon's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 09:53 AM #123
      Quote Originally Posted by vwfreek View Post
      This.

      Exactly. The only one that makes sense is the temp slider, and maybe the defrost. The bottom two? It's anyone's guess unless they have an owners' manual, or ask on The Samba*.

      *Usually followed by "where is the washer fluid reservoir?" and "My wife wants shoulder belts in the back."

    19. Member McBanagon's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 10:02 AM #124
      Quote Originally Posted by dopaz View Post
      Why should you need to tell them apart? Why have two different keys at all? A single key for a single car. I can't believe it took GM until the 1990's to fix that ergonomic fail. And, they held onto the dual key setup despite customer preference:

      GM issues one key that operates the doors and trunk, and a second key for the ignition, despite research indicating that customers prefer a single key.

      Toyota had single keys that could be inserted either way since the 1970's. VW, at least since the 1980's (my '84 Rabbit had a single symmetric key). GM / Ford held on to the dual key setup for decades.
      I believe it was because they used the same cylinder in every GM product and ran out of key patterns.

      The chances of your key working on another car in the parking lot were rising every time another car rolled off the assembly line. Their solution was to issue two keys, so even if you were able to open another GM in the parking lot, your other key wouldn't work in the ignition.

      Most simple and inexpensive solution ever.

      I can't remember where I read/heard this. I might be wrong, but it makes sense to me.

    20. Member Chris_V's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 10:42 AM #125
      Quote Originally Posted by rabbitnothopper View Post
      therefore your story is saying
      key is dead...cant open trunk.....facepalm and sell the car?
      No, you use the physical key to open the trunk, like you would on most old cars.

      Quote Originally Posted by Ace_VR6 View Post
      Not at all I am saying they have no trunk button for 2005. 2004 and 2006 has them but none in 2005. Terrible placement in 2005.
      No, 2006 doesn't have a trunk button either. And yes, it's a PITA to always use the key or key fob, but it's not really worse than my '63 Mercury was (you had to use the key to open the trunk on that car, as well).
      I love cars, but the problem is they are like schroedinger's hobby. They're always in a quantum superstate of being both awesome and a huge waste of time and money... until observation momentarily forces them into one state or another.

    21. Member Bibs's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 10:47 AM #126
      The push button wiper controls on the early 90's Geo metro were bad...when you pushed the "off" button to turn off the wipers, the action would often send the HI/LO/INT button flying across the cabin.
      Luckily, it's a Geo, so it wasn't hard to reach over and grab it off the passenger floor.

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      10-03-2012 10:49 AM #127
      Quote Originally Posted by ValveCoverGasket View Post
      i nominate any switches around the cluster on a discovery 1 or 2




      impossible to see around the steering wheel to know which switch is where, and whether theyre pressed or not.
      Yes, it is fairly amazing how the wheel DOES hide every single one. It seems almost designed that way.

      Still nothing is more confusing than an older 911. The controls are just.....everywhere.......and for anything. Plenty of people here could spend an hour in one, and without an owners manual not figure out how to turn on the defroster, adjust the timing of the wipers, or open a sunroof.
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      10-03-2012 10:58 AM #128
      Quote Originally Posted by rs4-380 View Post
      x48. never been able to remotely figure it out.
      That photo is missing the two "ejector handles" that go next to the console by the dial for autoheat. Those handles controlled the flap doors for heat. You could do ANYTHING with the dial and get nothing if you didn't pull the flaps open. Conversely you could set the dial to MINIMUM setting and if you opened the flap doors even 1/3 of the way you could roast a turkey in the car.

      My father owned an 88 Carrera for 10 years. You will never convince me that the climate system in that car worked well or worked properly.
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      10-03-2012 11:00 AM #129
      Quote Originally Posted by Ace_VR6 View Post
      The Worst button placement I have ever had to deal with is the trunk release button on the 2005 Ford Mustang GT my dad had. It didn't have one... Had one on keyfob though!
      My '05 GTO had similar odd ergonomics:

      There was no door lock button--you either used the key fob or pushed down the lock tab on the door, which then caused the other door to lock. The trunk release is a tiny button in the glove box most people wont find unless they look in the manual. Gas filler release was a dash button obscured by the steering wheel. Because the car was originally RHD, the radio controls were flipped and the e-brake was on the wrong side of the shifter. The power operated seats can't be quickly pulled forward to let rear passengers in or out, so you have to wait 15 seconds for the slowest power seats in history to move 8" forward. They also had to move the gas tank to meet US regs and it both cut down on trunk space and made it so the rear seats could not be folded down.

      The things like that were what ultimately led me to sell the car, even though it drove very well. 17 mpg didn't help either.

    25. Geriatric Member AKADriver's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 11:09 AM #130
      The GTO was basically what happens when you take a 4-door sedan that was specifically designed for one isolated RHD market, then hastily/cheaply convert it to a coupe, then hastily/cheaply convert that coupe to LHD.

      Power seats in general are a huge ergonomic fail. Manual seat adjustments - even the Recaro-style recline knobs that people hate on VWs - are always faster. Power seats in a coupe that don't have a manual flip-forward feature are almost inexcusable.

      Though my car has the "no power lock button, driver's door lock tab actuates the passenger door power lock" setup and it doesn't bother me. About once a month, though, someone will come on to miata.net with a new '99 or '00 Miata and post something like "I just bought this car but the fobs are missing and the driver's door power lock doesn't work" - the driver's door isn't powered at all and these cars never had keyless entry until '01+.
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      10-03-2012 11:18 AM #131
      Quote Originally Posted by AKADriver View Post
      The GTO was basically what happens when you take a 4-door sedan that was specifically designed for one isolated RHD market, then hastily/cheaply convert it to a coupe, then hastily/cheaply convert that coupe to LHD.
      Yup. Even then I don't think the end product was bad; it was just a late 1990's car being sold in the mid 2000s. The styling didn't help either (I dont mind it but most people think it looks like a grand prix).

      At least the interior quality was good--much better than other GMs of the vintage. Was fun to drive after i redid the suspension, too. Just a terrible daily driver/only car, IMO.

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      10-03-2012 11:26 AM #132


      I always thought the air distribution icons on my old SPG were really confusing. This was before everyone used the little dude with an arrow pointing to his face, his feet, or both. Ergonomically it was fine, but the icons were

    28. Senior Member ValveCoverGasket's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:08 PM #133
      Quote Originally Posted by Jrod511 View Post

      Still nothing is more confusing than an older 911. The controls are just.....everywhere.......and for anything. Plenty of people here could spend an hour in one, and without an owners manual not figure out how to turn on the defroster, adjust the timing of the wipers, or open a sunroof.
      speaking of switches everywhere for everything...

      how about all the semi-labeled switches in older RRs/jags/etc


    29. Member jeff1234's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:25 PM #134
      Placement of CD player on 6th Gen Civics, where below it, lies the cup holders which were covered by a flap. If you needed to change CDs and had a drink in the cup holder, you had to remove said drink and close the flap to replace the CD. Then to put the drink back, you had to release the flap to expose the cup holders again. Drove me nuts all the time.

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    30. Member patrickvr6's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 12:54 PM #135
      Quote Originally Posted by Jrod511 View Post
      That photo is missing the two "ejector handles" that go next to the console by the dial for autoheat. Those handles controlled the flap doors for heat. You could do ANYTHING with the dial and get nothing if you didn't pull the flaps open. Conversely you could set the dial to MINIMUM setting and if you opened the flap doors even 1/3 of the way you could roast a turkey in the car.

      My father owned an 88 Carrera for 10 years. You will never convince me that the climate system in that car worked well or worked properly.
      Those handles went away with the Autoheat cars and were replaced by servos that opened and closed the dampeners based on a temperature sensor in the duct and the setting of the Autoheat dial.

    31. Member dopaz's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 01:55 PM #136
      Quote Originally Posted by jeff1234 View Post
      Placement of CD player on 6th Gen Civics, where below it, lies the cup holders which were covered by a flap. If you needed to change CDs and had a drink in the cup holder, you had to remove said drink and close the flap to replace the CD. Then to put the drink back, you had to release the flap to expose the cup holders again. Drove me nuts all the time.
      It only took them three years to correct that, the 99-00 sixth-gen Civics have a double-din opening in the upper part of the dash.

      Now 911's, they were confusing for decades!

    32. Banned seadoo2006's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 02:11 PM #137
      Quote Originally Posted by emmettlodge View Post
      Had this type of switch on our Suburbans. Thanks for the horrible memories
      Oh god ... I remember that little bastard in our 1987 Suburban growing up ... the horror!

    33. Member cockerpunk's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 02:14 PM #138
      after two years of ownership, i have still not figured out the HVAC controls on my 951



      WHY ARE THERE TWO SLIDERS, WTF IS THE DIFFERENCE
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    34. Banned seadoo2006's Avatar
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      10-03-2012 02:19 PM #139
      I raise all of you ...

      The Pontiac G5 trunk release button ... hidden away where you'll never find it!!


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      10-03-2012 02:51 PM #140
      Quote Originally Posted by cockerpunk View Post
      after two years of ownership, i have still not figured out the HVAC controls on my 951

      WHY ARE THERE TWO SLIDERS, WTF IS THE DIFFERENCE
      Okay, is this what you have?



      I'm going to take a stab at it.

      On the left you have a recirc button, which closes the outside vent, and below that, a windshield defrost button, which opens the defroster vent.

      Then fan speed knob.

      Then the sliders allow you to open the upper (dash) and lower (floor) vents to different levels.

      Then the temperature knob, then the A/C button.

      Disclaimer: I have not driven a post-1985.5 944/951/968. However upper and lower vents are the only functions that aren't present on the other knobs, and it's got up and down arrows.
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