Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Backup Electric Window Control

  [vote for,

Here in England summer started on Friday or Saturday, and is due to end sometime around lunchtime tomorrow. Wanting to take advantage of the clement weather I had my little brother drive me to the pub in his little Fiat Punto. Unfortunately, the passenger side electric window didn't work, almost causing me to pass away during the drive. It was that hot.

Anyway, I propose a backup window handle to be concealed behind a panel in the car door for use when the car hates you. Or, more commonly, when the engine isn't turned on and you have been left in the car like a dog while the driver 'pops' into the supermarket for about half an hour.

sambwiches, Jul 14 2003

The Lifehammer http://www.lifehammer.com/
It's a hammer, it may save your life. [oneoffdave, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Lucas Electric Jokes http://pw1.netcom.c...mor/lucasjokes.html
[bristolz, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Thermal protector http://www.allegromicro.com/sf/2547/
Protect motors, not passengers [kbecker, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]


       I thought of this under almost exactly the same circumstances (outside Safeway) at almost exactly the same time (this weekend). So (+) for getting around to it before I did.
egbert, Jul 14 2003

       Baked. Though I can't cite a specific model, I've seen accesses for handles just like those for sunroofs. I'll see if I can turn up a link.   

       (Later) Hell, maybe I was thinking of a retro-fitted car. I can't find anything on a factory system that works as described...
phoenix, Jul 14 2003

       Methinks this would also be a lifesaving device if one gets trapped in a car which has crashed and sunk underwater. As everyone here probably knows, to open the doors underwater you need to open the window to relive the pressure first- if you only have leccy windows, chances are they won't open, and it's curtains. In fact, saw prog on TV about this nearly happening to someone. Croissant.
goff, Jul 14 2003

       The aux handle would have to be very easy to find for use in [Goff]'s situation and I'm not sure many car buyers would like to have high visibility access panels on their doors. For emergencies I carry a Lifehammer [link] but would appreciate something built in for less urgent window situations.
oneoffdave, Jul 15 2003

       Holy positive reaction, Batman! I was in dire need of this yesterday. 30 degrees outside, wearing a suit and a huge black graduation gown. Driving for about an hour. With nothing to drink.
sambwiches, Jul 15 2003

       I done tol' yeh them newfangled whichamajiggers would gitcha in trouble.

It is still possible to get cars with handle-powered windows. This post makes me glad I have one.
kevindimie, Jul 15 2003

       *Dammit, if I just had a screwdriver to pop this crazy panel off, we'd be saved.
RayfordSteele, Jul 15 2003

       I think it was one of the last Renaults available in the US. Rented one once (a convertable), and the electric window didn't work. Fortunately, it had a backup winder handle in the glovebox (standard feature), and the hole was already missing the cover.   

       Reminds me of my parent's MG TD, which instead of building a starter that worked all the time, the factory added a tiny foldable crank to the end of it, so when the solenoid stuck, you could unstick it without a hammer. (probably Lucas Electric-- company motto: on, off, and flicker)
oxen crossing, Jul 15 2003

       (I always heard their motto is: "The company that invented darkness")
bristolz, Jul 15 2003

       You're right, I forgot. I should've said, "Lucas Electric-- all their components have 3 states: on, off and flicker."
oxen crossing, Jul 15 2003

       Hey, I used to work for Lucas.   


       OK, carry on.
egbert, Jul 15 2003

       I don't get half the Lucas jokes, bristolz. Maybe they're a touch too higbrow for me. Or lowbrow. I can never decide. Anyway, off to bed.
sambwiches, Jul 15 2003

       //It's a hammer, it may save your life.// [oneoffdave]   

       I had one of those life hammer things. It was fixed into the carpet by evil-looking extending spikes that didn't hold it well enough and it eventually spiked me in the ankle. There was a glow-in-the-dark locator light that didn't glow in the dark.   

       Also, the window hammer lacked weight and there was no knuckle guard. I never had to use it in an emergency, so I can't say if it was more of a trouble than a help.   

       I bought it because my cousin was once trapped in a wreck by her seatbelt - the safety knife feature is all I evaluated seriously, but in retrospect, I'd probably be better off with a round-tipped single-handed folding blade with a heavy, pointed pommel.
FloridaManatee, Jul 16 2003

       Amazingly, I just came home from the pub in a car that had all 4 of its electric windows out of order - does this just happen in the summertime, or do we just not notice it during winter?
sambwiches, Jul 16 2003

       They make them to fail when its hot (see link).
kbecker, Jul 16 2003

       If heat in a parked car is the problem, then it is Baked: http://www.autowindow.com   

       ..opens windows a crack if car gets too hot inside. User controls the function with the car remote when locking and leaving the car.
scottm, Mar 19 2004

       TRY THIS http://www.escapetip.com/News_Clips.asp
caraticus, May 09 2004

       This was indeed available on a car back in the late 70s. I was thinking Peugeot but oxen crossing says it was a Renault. A French idea anyhow, and it didn't last. I can only imagine it was dropped because of the extra cost and low perceived value against the increasing reliability of the electrics.   

       I say bring back crank windows all around!
desperado, May 09 2004

       <shamelessplug>How about a Pocket Sawzall? Cuts through seatbelts, doors, even Irish Soda Bread!</shamelessplug>
justaguy, May 09 2004

       For some summer cooling style check out the Solar Powered Air Conditioning on the Flash Audis. It always keeps the car cool. But hey There is nothing like a manual solution to a problem.   

       Sundried tomato Focaccia from me! +
PainOCommonSense, May 28 2004

       I've been wishing that my car had this feature since I bought it. I have a somewhat geriatric ford tempo (UK- a lame version of the Sierra Sapphire, a bit bigger though) with a crappy driver's side electric window. There is a dead bit on the motor that means that if I wind it all the way up it won't come back down. 'Repairing' it involves pulling the door card off and bashing it in just the right spot with a hammer; not too practical when in motion. +
stilgar, Jun 19 2005

       I dunno why anybody ever thought power windows were a good idea... OH, maybe it's because the power to operate the windows then comes from the battery, which is charged by burning more gas!   

       In the WIBNI category, let's not buy a car with power windows ever again. They break, they trap you if your car is in the water, and you can't roll the window down without the key in the ignition. Talk about an amazing step backwards in technology.
ye_river_xiv, Jun 17 2006

       Its so there will be more expensive crap to break and require repair. I was quite annoyed that my new Prius not only came without an option for manual window cranks, but that the side mirrors are also electric.   

       And since the electrics wear out and cost money, I avoid using them.   

       What this means in my case is that I drive unsafely. I won't reset the side mirrors from my wife's position unless I am going to be driving a long distance so I have ineffective side mirrors most of the time.
Galbinus_Caeli, Jun 17 2006


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