Tuesday, August 21, 2012

It seems that

a lot of us have become inadvertent bike slugs. It has been too hot to consider riding with all the gear and sweating in traffic and I was no exception. My bike had been idled for a few days during our recent heat wave, but in anticipation of a hot date I needed to make my bike operational. I checked my tire pressures and they were low. I had to drag out my new air compressor


Would you believe that my front tire only registered 27 psi ! I haven't checked them since before the iMBC2012 which was mid July. I quickly pumped it back to 33 psi


which was the recommended pressure for solo riding. My rear tire was also a bit low, nothing as serious as the front but it only showed 34 psi, when it should have been 36 psi


so naturally I pumped it back up too. The plan was to ride my bike to the local grocery store to replenish my junque food supplies. It was hot and I didn't feel like gearing up, plus the fact that what I was buying was going to be too heavy for my side cases

junque food

while all this food at first glance doesn't appear to be that healthy, you have to consider that it is all Vegan, so I thought that this was a good thing

this stuff was so heavy that I had to use a grocery cart


I had just enough room in my trunk to carry all these delicious morsels home



Another Gas report and rip-off:


One thing that our American friends may not know is how much we are being gouged for our premium fuel/gas. Most prices are quoted as Regular 87 octane.

today our gas prices fell to $1.349 / litre, which works out to $5.106 / US gal

but many of us have vehicles which require premium fuel


My hobby car is recommended to use 94 octane. I have tried to use lesser octane but 87 creates all sorts of dieseling and hard starting problems. The lowest I can get away with is 91 octane but I alternate once in a while with the good stuff. Also it can get expensive to fill the tank so I try to keep it half or more so it doesn't feel like I have to empty my wallet everytime I need gas

Today I only needed about a third of a tank. It costs about $125. to fill the tank from near empty


At $1.509/litre this works out to $5.712 /US gal. So the difference between Regular and Premium gas is just over $0.606 per US gal. That's 60 cents per gallon. I notice on my travels that when I am in the USA, the difference is only about 10 cents per gallon, which is only a modest difference.


  1. Pretty interesting selection of groceries...

    Here in Barrow, regular gas is currently $5.909 until sometime in September. They get one shipment of gas per year so the current price was based on the cost last year.

    1. Richard:

      Our Government over taxes us. It is supposed to cover infrastructure, road repairs and bridges but they take the money into general revenue, then when we need a bridge we have to pay a toll to pay for it. We don't have the extra transportation costs that you do. If gas was the same price within 100 miles of us then there would be no need to complain but cross the border into the USA and you will notice a substantial difference, and I don't doubt that the gas comes from the same place

  2. Too weird Bob, what are the odds we'd both post on tire pressure issues at the same time?

    I'm in Vancouver but haven't a spare second since I landed. I had my tire pressure post and few others lined up because I knew otherwise I wouldn't have time for my blog.

    Glad your close calls worked out.

    Off to Whistler tomorrow. All the best,


    1. David:

      have a good trip, enjoy your time in Whistler with your family. catch you next time

  3. When we bought our last car, one of the requirements was that it use regular fuel. Two on our short list called for premium & were nixed. I have a long commute and at that time I wasn't riding, so it was a consideration.

    We complain about gas prices, but I think we pay much less than just about anywhere else. Ron buys gas for his bike at the airport, still not as expensive as yours I think.

    1. BlueKat:

      We have two cars which require premium. The other is our Subaru WRX. It's just fortunate that we don't commute very far. I average my "Fleet" mileage. Between my Bike, Honda and 'Vette doesn't seem so bad if you look at the whole year. On the highway, the 'Vette get phenominal mileage considering what it is, I am barely turning 1,100. rpm at highway speeds

  4. You don't want to complain too much about your fuel prices Bob - not to us Kiwi's.

    I converted your $1.34 to NZ$1.68 per litre. My last fill on the V-Strom was NZ$2.149 per litre (for 91 octane) and it has been over $2.20. I regularly put over $40 in the bikes at a time and my Subbie takes 98 octane which is about 4-5 cents per litre dearer. It gobbles up $100 worth pretty regularly.

    Oh, and I've paid over $2.50 per litre at some of our more remote petrol stations...

    1. Andrew:

      that's the price you pay for living in Paradise. What I am saying is that if you compare fuel prices in a 100 mile radius, it is much cheaper a short distance away when you cross the Cdn/USA border. Outside of the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD), gas is much cheaper as they don't have the taxes we have to pay in the City.

      are there any oil refineries in NZ ? We have refineries locally, and also in Alberta and Washington State. Our pricing is bloated because of taxes, actually we pay the highest gas taxes in Canada

  5. Into sure where you were in the Us, but the diff between regular and premium in my woods is more like $0.30. And diesel is more expensive than premium. Filling up the truck tank is horrendous. I've tried to fill up at half a tank and always seem to forget.

    1. Lori:

      Okay smartie. You are nearly right again. I just checked, premium in Bellingham is about .25c higher than regular, but that is still DOUBLE what we have to pay EXTRA for premium up here. If you keep filling up at around Half Tank it doesn't seem so bad. The last time I let it run down as I wanted to get rid of last years gas, and it was over $80. It's not good to mix good gas with the old gas, is it ?

  6. We bitch about our $3.95 /gallon here in Oregon but after reading Andrew's comment I don't think we really have a right to. Luckily our Subaru and both bikes take regular octane petrol.

    Oh - and I'd double check the ingredients on your butter tarts there Bob - I'm guessing they have eggs and/or butter in them - decidedly not vegan :-) I only tease you cuz I can.

    1. Trobairitz:

      I just checked . . . gasbuddy.com

      Point Roberts $4.23 / US gal = 1.12 / litre
      Bellingham 3.99 / US gal = 1.05 / litre

      Vancouver bc 1.379 / litre

      we have two vehicles which require Premium 94 octane, but we usually drop down to 91 octane, often

      As for Vegan, Drats ! Foiled again, and I thought I was being good, aside from the suger in those drinks, the other bottles contain different flavours of organic juice, natural, no sugar added and perhaps the chips have a bit too much salt. In order to check those butter tart ingredients I have to buy another package to find out. Would it help to know that they contain raisins ?

      I am looking forward to my Vegan Lifestyle weekend, coming up . . .

  7. vegan?...lol... ;) hugs!

    we have one of the largest US refineries in our back yard here (richmond chevron, which had a bad and toxic fire recently btw), and still we have been bumping $5. gal usd. and, of course, i am sure prices will go up+++++++++ due to the fire :(

    1. Ms M:

      Actually, I am not sure but there are varying degrees of Vegan. I think I am in the 'Nearly Vegan' class. We don't eat much RED meat anyway, mostly just Chicken or Fish, and when we do have meat they are very small portions. I would have the problem of NO Eggs. I love my Eggs Bennedicts or Omlettes too much. Then there is the toast which I like buttered. Then the coffee with 2% milk. I tried Soy Milk once, but it didn't agree with me, must be some sort of allergic reaction, so I am afraid to try it again.

      so that must be it. If I'm "Nearly Vegan" then I can still have my Ice cream float, and a greasy hamburger once in a while, Right ?

  8. I point it out to no effect: gas taxes fund single payer in part. Get a $20,000 medical bill, say 80 percent of a spleen operation and ask yourself how much over priced gas could you buy? How many medical bankruptcies do you see in Canada? How many gas related bankruptcies? I say switch to our rip off medical "system" cut the gas taxes and let the real whining begin.

  9. PS if it were that bad you'd have ridden the bike instead of finding reasons to drive.

    1. Mr Conchscooter:

      I average my "fleet" so gas costs are irrelevant. I just thought that we were being gouged for Premium but we are only paying twice as much as you. Fuel taxes have nothing to do with medicare. The taxes are supposed to go for road repair and bridges, but they don't. It goes into general revenue so our roads are full of potholes

      We have compusory Government auto insurance. You have no choice but to buy from the BC Government and they are supposed to keep rates low. Everytime they make a profit it is supposed to reduce the premiums for the next year, instead they take this profit into general revenue and raise our auto premiums. That's what happens when you have a monopoly

  10. Bob, as much as I love to complain about gas prices in Canada, and I do (there have been a few price fixing lawsuits) when I look around the rest of the world (US excepted) I have nothing to complain about .... and I agree with Conchscooter, give me universal health care over cheap gas anytime (...and give me butter tarts and eggs...not to mention poutine...within reason - of course.) Am glad the VStar takes regular, though in the sketchy parts of the US I've learned I should have been runing premium because of the quality of the regular gas, that's just experience.)

    1. Karen:

      I am not complaining about gas prices, This is just a public service announcement to show what our gas prices are. We do not commute much anyway, and my Honda gets fabulous gas mileage. I love those butter tarts with raisons, actually I bought another package yesterday on my way home, just to photograph the Vegan label. We also have Fuel problems with gas purchased at stations just across the border, probably dirty tanks, or water in them

  11. Somebody's grumpy in the southern states...

    Anyhoo, I laughed at your post about "junk food" and I felt better about my addiction to Sun chips and Coca Cola!

    It also reminds me, I need to ask Santa for a compressor...

    1. Deb:

      We bought a package of those too, Golden Harvest Sun Chips, sort of rippled. You spelled Junque wrong. I love Coca Cola too, but with lots of ice. I like reallly, reallllly COLD. And I also think they're VEGAN, as no eggs or butter in them

      Having an electric compressor is great. I love it

  12. Bob, the gas prices in our little piece of heaven haven't changed since I got home last week. It's still $3.899/gallon for regular and $4.279 for no ethanol premium.

    1. Erik:

      Up here the gas companies "Play" with us. The prices seemingly change hourly. You go to work look at the price, and when you come home it is different. I mean they get ONE delivery and the same gas is dispensed at differing prices every hour.

      check out http://www.vancouvergasprices.com/

      .12c / litre decrease since yesterday. Usually when they reduce prices for a day or so, the next day it is higher than what it was. It's just a game with them and we have to pay

  13. I am contemplating a car that only drinks premium, so I have been paying attention lately. Premium seems to average $0.40 to $0.50 more than regular. In Italy, gas was about 1.8 Euros per liter. That about $2.32 or just under $9/gallon. Damn.