Archive for July, 2008

Use your iPhone or iPod Touch to measure MINI performance

Posted in Autocross, General, Motoring with tags , , , , , , on July 29, 2008 by minibee62

I recently updated my iPhone with the latest software so I could take advantage of the new App Store. So far I’ve found a few useful things and some games but nothing really rocked my world…until now.

A new app called Dynolicious lets you use your iPhone or iPod Touch as a performance-measuring device. The software uses the built-in accelerometer to measure things like speed, braking force, g-forces and wheel horsepower. Here is a snippet from the Dynlocious web site:

Dynolicious utilizes the accelerometer built in to your iPhone or iPod Touch to sense the motion of your vehicle. This data is sampled as many as one hundred times per second, developing a detailed picture of the car’s acceleration. This information is then used to determine the speed of the vehicle and the distance travelled. Due to the unique hardware integrated into the iPhone, this can all be done with no setup, wires, or extra equipment!


Here are some screenshots:


I installed it tonight and will start testing it with MINIBee immediately! I’ll be surprised if it’s as accurate as they claim but even if it isn’t, it’s pretty cool. I’ll post an update with some of my results when I have them.


I get by with a little help from my friends

Posted in General, MINI Collectibles with tags , , , , on July 27, 2008 by minibee62

I have a MINI die-cast collection and as you can expect, I’m partial to anything in Liquid Yellow. Sometimes I get lucky and find things in local stores on my own. And sometimes I win something cool on ebay. But most of my favorite models came from friends on the die-cast forum on NAM.

This Liquid Yellow Cooper with matching Caravan trailer has been eluding me for months. I literally have checked Wal Marts in several states and still came up empty. So when ChubbyChecker (his name is Bruce) posted on NAM that he had found one and knew where there were more, I asked him to pick one up for me. He did so without hesitation and I received it on Friday (thanks Bruce!). It’s important to note that he and I have only exchanged a few PM’s and forum posts, yet he was willing to help out a fellow collector. Things like this make me believe there is hope for NAM yet.

Batman has the Batmobile but Batboy drives a MINI Cooper

Posted in General, MINI Events with tags , , on July 27, 2008 by minibee62

As I was waiting in line to get a caricature at MTTS in Miami, the discussion somehow turned to the famous Weekly World News cover showing Batboy driving a MINI Cooper.

As I and my fellow Miniacs continued to talk about it, the man drawing the caricatures overheard us and began to smile. “I am the creator of Batboy,” he said. He continued to tell us the story of Batboy and how he was the retired artist who first inserted the batty character into various tabloid scenes. As I sat for my caricature, he went on to tell me the idea for the Batboy/Cooper cover came from MINI U.S.A. and that they paid for the whole thing, as if it were an advertisement. I was shocked to learn that such a reputable publication would allow MINI to fabricate a news event like this.


He was a very nice fellow and as he continued drawing he told me he was doing something special for me. I ended up with a one-of-a-kind, MTTS collectible:

That Batboy sure does get around!

MINIBee’s twin sold today at Ferman MINI

Posted in General with tags , , , on July 25, 2008 by minibee62

I was at Ferman MINI today to have my rear brakes replaced. MINIBee’s twin was there and it made me smile. It was a totally stock Cooper cabrio and as I checked it out it reminded me of what MINIBee used to be. (Hey, that’s a cool name. UsedToBee!) A nice couple from Maryland was taking it home and they told me they bought it on eBay then came down to pick it up! The woman was very excited and was asking lots of questions about bonnett stripes and other accessories. Ah, the memories.

The Ferman lot, which is usually loaded with MINIs, only had 1-2 new MINIs and a few previously-loved ones. So I guess that recent story about a national, new MINI shortage is true. A LY S cabrio also was there for service. It’s the first time I’ve seen three LY cabrios in one place. It was practically a hive!  : )

Downloadable MINI Owner’s Manuals

Posted in General, Maintenance with tags , , on July 25, 2008 by minibee62

How many times have you wanted to look up something in your MINI owner’s manual but didn’t want to dig it out of the glovebox? You can download your manual using the links below and keep it on a laptop, USB keychain drive or some other storage device for quick access.

2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 Convertible | 2007 Tintop

MINI Stereo | MINI Navigation | MINI Unauthorized Owner’s Manual

MINI Clubman S vs. a Go-Kart

Posted in General, MINI Videos, Motoring with tags , , , on July 24, 2008 by minibee62

The latest installment from webridestv offers a humorous review of the Clubman, with a “race” between a Clubman S and a go-kart on a slick, indoor track.

New series of MINI ‘Toonz from COOPERation

Posted in General, MINI Swag, Motoring with tags , , , , , , on July 24, 2008 by minibee62

MINIBee the ‘Toon would like to introduce you to the latest art from the master of MINI design, COOPERation. Craig is at it again and has produced a new series that covers everything from a Classic to a Cooper to a Cabrio to a Clubman. Clever titles and phrases contribute additional humor to these whimsical designs. You can check out the designs in greater detail here.