Automotive

Locked: Does drafting on the highway work when following small vehicles 50 feet away?

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  • Feb 21st, 2017 5:49 pm
[OP]
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Apr 21, 2004
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Does drafting on the highway work when following small vehicles 50 feet away?

Or do you need to be following a wider vehicle like an SUV or a pick up truck? I don't plan on leaving just 10 feet of space but surprised 20-50 feet can get you much better fuel economy.

Mythbusters: drafting 10 feet behind a big rig will improve mileage 39 percent
http://www.autoblog.com/2007/10/28/myth ... rove-mile/

Does drafting on the highway improve gas mileage?
http://www.vancouverschoolbus.com/does- ... s-mileage/
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Jan 8, 2006
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Increase fuel economy at the cost of increased risk of a collision and debris flying towards you.

I get this technique applied on race track, but on public highways its not worth it, imo.
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Andro wrote: Increase fuel economy at the cost of increased risk of a collision and debris flying towards you.

I get this technique applied on race track, but on public highways its not worth it, imo.
I don't seen any car on the 401 driving behind a truck 100 feet away.

Are those air brakes much stronger than our typical mainstream car braking?
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markham
alanbrenton wrote: I don't seen any car on the 401 driving behind a truck 100 feet away.

Are those air brakes much stronger than our typical mainstream car braking?
rookie rookie
thats the best way to keep replacing windshields..following trucks (and vehicles for that matter) greatly increase you getting debris from the road or the tires fly up directly into your windshield and crack it. has nothing to do with brakes..just has to do with safety and protecting your windshield.
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cardguy wrote: rookie rookie
thats the best way to keep replacing windshields..following trucks (and vehicles for that matter) greatly increase you getting debris from the road or the tires fly up directly into your windshield and crack it. has nothing to do with brakes..just has to do with safety and protecting your windshield.
How do the tires fly off? They mostly roll don't they, especially with a fender enveloping them or them located underneath a truck body?

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2016/1 ... y-407.html


Don't know how rookie my experience is but I have not seen anyone follow a car from 100 feet behind on the 400 series. It's not like I will be willing to tailgate someone but surprisingly drafting works even at 100 feet.
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markham
alanbrenton wrote: How do the tires fly off? They mostly roll don't they, especially with a fender enveloping them or them located underneath a truck body?

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2016/1 ... y-407.html


Don't know how rookie my experience is but I have not seen anyone follow a car from 100 feet behind on the 400 series. It's not like I will be willing to tailgate someone but surprisingly drafting works even at 100 feet.

debris from tires not tires themselves.....rocks, garbage ..stuff gets caught in tread then gets flung at you through centrifugal force... if you didn't know this..you should have..

..and your education about vehicles and safety should not be learned on rfd..as it seems it is
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May 18, 2008
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There's also damage that can be done to your bumper / hood from rock chips.. Overall not a good idea
[OP]
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cardguy wrote: debris from tires not tires themselves.....rocks, garbage ..stuff gets caught in tread then gets flung at you through centrifugal force... if you didn't know this..you should have..

..and your education about vehicles and safety should not be learned on rfd..as it seems it is
at 50 feet, give me a break. You can't even follow my simple posts.

I'm not going to tailgate someone on the highway to save 39% on my fuel cost. Please read my posts properly.
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Mar 16, 2015
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Mannnn..... dont do any 50 feet 100 feet rule .. 50 feet is nothing when you are driving at 110 km/hour...
Only rule for following is that you spot a stationary object. When the vehicle in front of you passes by that object, then count One thousand one ..one thousand two ( count little slowly like oneeee thousandddd oneee oneeee thousandddd twooooo) ....If before you finish your counting and you reach that stationary object, you are following too closely.
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alanbrenton wrote: at 50 feet, give me a break. You can't even follow my simple posts.

I'm not going to tailgate someone on the highway to save 39% on my fuel cost. Please read my posts properly.
To expand on what CocoJambo said, at highway speed of 60 mph your vehicle will travel 88 feet - so the 2 second rule would mean that ideally you'd be at least 176 feet behind the vehicle ahead. Following at only 100 feet is significantly cutting into you safety margin and IMHO not worth risking for the fuel savings.

At 110 kph, or 68.35 mph, your vehicle travels 100 feet per second - so the 2 second rule would have you following 200 feet behind.

Granted, few on the 400 Series roads seem to practice the 2 second rule. People aren't doing it to save fuel though. They're following too close because they're in too much of a rush and because they simply don't understand how dangerously close they're following (a contributing factor is also getting lulled into a rhythm that gives a false sense of security that the following distance is ok - it's ok when nothing happens but too close if something does happen!).
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Jan 28, 2015
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Even if you are drafting the average person would think you're tailgating and or asking to move over to drive faster...
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CocoJambo wrote: Mannnn..... dont do any 50 feet 100 feet rule .. 50 feet is nothing when you are driving at 110 km/hour...
Only rule for following is that you spot a stationary object. When the vehicle in front of you passes by that object, then count One thousand one ..one thousand two ( count little slowly like oneeee thousandddd oneee oneeee thousandddd twooooo) ....If before you finish your counting and you reach that stationary object, you are following too closely.
CanadianLurker wrote: To expand on what CocoJambo said, at highway speed of 60 mph your vehicle will travel 88 feet - so the 2 second rule would mean that ideally you'd be at least 176 feet behind the vehicle ahead. Following at only 100 feet is significantly cutting into you safety margin and IMHO not worth risking for the fuel savings.

At 110 kph, or 68.35 mph, your vehicle travels 100 feet per second - so the 2 second rule would have you following 200 feet behind.

Granted, few on the 400 Series roads seem to practice the 2 second rule. People aren't doing it to save fuel though. They're following too close because they're in too much of a rush and because they simply don't understand how dangerously close they're following (a contributing factor is also getting lulled into a rhythm that gives a false sense of security that the following distance is ok - it's ok when nothing happens but too close if something does happen!).
Thanks. I may have been underestimating what 100 feet apart seems like. A compact car is already around 15 feet in length.
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I can see the headline 'RFD member was decapitated yesterday when his gold Corolla collided with the back of a semi truck in an attempt to save 39% on fuel costs' haha
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markham
alanbrenton wrote: Thanks. I may have been underestimating what 100 feet apart seems like. A compact car is already around 15 feet in length.
please dont try an school anybody in here...i can see clearly by your posts in all of the threads here that you are a relative rookie in driving, cars , and all things to do with both. I can tell by your questions that you are lacking a lot of experience in all things automotive... I offered you advise on your tailgating (which you can see i was right according to your own distances) and instead of appreciating the advice..you challenge me on distances and potential for harm??,,,good luck,,i will refrain from answering your questions or giving sound advice
[OP]
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cardguy wrote: please dont try an school anybody in here...i can see clearly by your posts in all of the threads here that you are a relative rookie in driving, cars , and all things to do with both. I can tell by your questions that you are lacking a lot of experience in all things automotive... I offered you advise on your tailgating (which you can see i was right according to your own distances) and instead of appreciating the advice..you challenge me on distances and potential for harm??,,,good luck,,i will refrain from answering your questions or giving sound advice
Just because you post here, doesn't make you a better driver. What makes you a better driver anyway? Just because I ask basic questions and you can answer with insult or sarcasm, doesn't mean you are any better. You mentioned tires flying off and when I asked how that can damage the windshield when they usually roll or because an obstacle on the road that one has to go around, you retracted and said you meant any particle lodged in the grooves of the tread.

Actually, now that someone posted what the dynamic cruise control settings are on another forum, I do keep 100 feet away or more in my ordinary driving. I only underestimated the distance. Yes, underestimating the actual distance makes me a poorer driver.
Last edited by alanbrenton on Feb 21st, 2017 4:21 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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alanbrenton wrote: Thanks. I may have been underestimating what 100 feet apart seems like. A compact car is already around 15 feet in length.
The safe distance being measured in car lengths is an old school rule of thumb from back in the day when the average car was closer to 20 feet long. The gist of it was that you should stay back 1 car length for every 10 mph in speed which equates to roughly 120 feet at highway speed. Still further back than your thought if drafting at 190 feet back, but really scary as cars back then had crappy brakes and crappy safety designs.

The common rule of thumb is now 2 seconds as you can much better assess how far back you are by timing the landmark crossing than by trying to judge an actual distance. And despite improved cars and improved safety systems the 2 second rule is a more realistic approach for a safety margin than car lengths.
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OP..the simple fact that you made a serious inquiry on a public forum about following a vehicle in front of you on a 400 series highway at 50 feet or even 100 feet sums up your technical knowledge and common sense with respect to driving...I would suggest ending the conversation...you are not helping your case...
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alanbrenton wrote: ..

Mythbusters: drafting 10 feet behind a big rig will improve mileage 39 percent
http://www.autoblog.com/2007/10/28/myth ... rove-mile/

...

OP, The warning from the article in the link you posted:

Warning: Don't try this! The safest distance to drive behind a big rig at 55 miles per hour is 150 feet. Driving any closer is insane because it puts you in the driver's blind spot and also does not give you enough time to respond if the big rig's driver changes speed. This post is for informational purposes only.
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You will a Miata to draft small cars.

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