‚ÄčThe bamboo charcoal storage bag was a failure. At first use, the handle on the left broke. I guess I put too much and the bag was too heavy. 

Since the bag broke, I bought a similar under bed bag from Ikea at RM35.90 which comfortably stored all the things I needed. The storage bag is also more solid with boards at the bottom and all four sides. 

The 20L water storage bag was good but a bit flimsy as it is a bag and not a solid tank. I bought a storage box from Ikea to store the water bag and the box will also serve as a water basin to collect water when washing – RM20 including cover. 

I also bought a small 18cm pot and 24cm frying pan, which costs me around RM40. A portable stove with some cooking utensils cost me about RM80. I got some utensils from home too to save cost. 

Total from last blog RM227.90 + RM175.90 spent = TOTAL as of now RM403.80. I am using my own sleeping bag and 2 rolls of blankets as pillow and bolster. I also use an insulated bag to store all spices, oil and some utensils. 

While I have planned for road trip this week, I will need to postpone the trip as I have an appointment with doctor. I hope next week’s traffic will be kind to me. 

More to come… 

I bought the Exora with long term plans in mind – I wanted it to be a caravan or at least a small campervan for road trips. I have researched but there was no samples of modified Exora into a campervan. I wish I have a sample to follow. But then again, why not create one?

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I was researching on fancy campervan boxes like these in the pictures and crazily thought of a DIY one too. Yet I gave up at the amount of work and skills needed. In the end I made a simple list.

If I were to go on a road trip, I will need

  • Food – a simple portable stove, pots or pans, utensils, cutleries and bowls or plates, spices
  • Water – drinking water supply, water for washing, a simple basin to collect water
  • Sleep – sleeping area which the Exora provides great space and a sleeping bag should do
  • Working area – perhaps a portable table which I have one in the store room
  • Food storage – perhaps an ice box (which I already have)
  • Luggage – A luggage bag should do

I reckon that I will not build a shower area or toilet in the Exora and could utilise public toilets at the highways as I travel. But a small area for morning wash up should do good.

2016090102070151253Another area of concern is the electricity at night. I won’t be sleeping in a car with the engine turned on for air-conditioning. So I may need a small fan, powered by a battery and a mosquito net if I unwind some windows for air at night.

I saw this fan with LED lights and comes with a torch, powered by solar or DC power. I just ordered and yet to receive the little fan priced at RM33 excluding postage. Will review this soon.

Thinking of power at night, I was thinking of a car inverter which converts AC to DC and hook up with a car battery. I have used this inverter<–>car battery to power up a portable copier when I helped people registered BR1M. The dilemma is whether to charge the car battery at a workshop and wait for hours or to have a spare car battery on the go. The weight and price of a car battery may not be feasible.

free-bag-samsung-solar-led-50000mah-powerbank-lk-power-bank-oem-ckkong90-1606-05-ckkong905 I then saw this solar powerbank which claims 50,000mAh, comes with LED lights too. I have seen reviews online but I am a stubborn person who would like to test them myself. Not to mention, I always opt for cheap things too. I know sometimes the saying goes, penny wise, pound foolish. Will review this soon too.

Back to the plan of having a car inverter and a car battery, plus the dilemma of having an extra car battery, I found the solution with solar panel. A solar panel of perhaps 50W should suffice. I was made to understand that it should connects to a charge controller, then to the car battery and then to the inverter. The car battery serves as a storage of the solar panel charge. I have yet to build this set. Once I decide on a longer journey will I then try this and review.

solar-panel-100w-jagohsolar-1512-28-jagohsolar5I am a newbie at all these and just crazily testing here and there. I appreciate the efforts of many seniors who have blogged about their campervan journey. I hope they will share more of their journeys, DIY projects and how they fare too.

http://malaysia-campervan.blogspot.my/
This blog stops in year 2014

https://malaysiacarcamping.com

http://mycampervanmelaka.blogspot.my/

 

 

So far, I have bought these online from lelong.com.my (the price below include shipping)

  • 2 units of 20L portable water storage bag (RM48)
  • A roll and go cosmetic bag – could be useful to store cutleries and cooking utensils – and the 3-in-1 portable solar fan and light (RM55.50)
  • Solar LED power bank (RM80)
  • Bamboo charcoal large storage bag (RM18.90)
  • Mosquito Net (RM25.50)
  • TOTAL as of now RM227.90

Still need to purchase

  • A small pot
  • Portable stove
  • Cooking utensils
  • Plates, bowls, cups and cutleries
  • Wash basin

More sharing to come….

I was driving one fine day and then the air from air-conditioning just stopped blowing. Sent the car to the service centre at Bercham industrial area (Ipoh) straight away and was told that the switch malfunction. The air-conditioning works only at Speed 4 but no response to Speed 1 to 3. However, I was told that they have no spare parts and the waiting period could be between a week to three weeks. 

I sent the car to Jalan Kuala Kangsar, a bigger service centre and got the switch changed immediately. While waiting for my turn took a while, the change and services were quick, friendly and very personalised. I particularly like the Service Manager there as I spoke to him on the phone earlier. It was his friendliness and eagerness to assist that drew me to that service centre, otherwise I’d not be there. 

As my car is still under warranty period, the change of switch was free. 

We also took a glance at the new Proton Ertiga. Somewhat shorter and smaller in size compared to Exora, less space and powered by a 1.4 EEV engine. We viewed the interior and exterior. We asked for the price and to our surprise, it is only cheaper than Exora by less than RM10,000. For RM60k+, I will still choose Exora for the bonus of space. 

Yes! I love the Exora for its comfort and space. My car was of great service to ferry 8 adults and 2 children around Klang Valley and to and from Melaka just last month. My grandma didn’t find it difficult to climb in and out the car, too.
The Exora is powered by a 1.6 Turbo engine and I felt that is quite sufficient but of course would love to have a 2.0 Turbo if available. For the Ertiga, at 1.4, I am unsure if it is under-powered for that matter. 

If Ertiga is priced at RM50k – RM55k range, perhaps is a good choice, considering some families opting for a cheaper 7-seater. At a price similar to Exora, Ertiga may need more convincing power to boost its sales. 

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My grandmother was from Sungai Petani and my mom (plus a few aunts) were born here. Two aunts are still here so we do visit once in a while. Today we are at this lorong (a back lane), beautifully decorated with street arts.

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An extended family - with my grandma, mom, aunt, cousins and nephew

The seven-seater Exora has become a great road trip vehicle among my friends and family members.

Last week, I went for the third seevice session at 10,000km mileage. So far so good, no complaints.

I love the super quick cooling air-conditioning, huge space for all Ikea stuffs I buy, safety features I know it will bring me to destinations safely, the comfort and convenience for the whole family.

I still feel Proton Exora is my best investment so far. Loving it dailt

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Yesterday I sent the car to the Proton service centre at 5,300+km mileage. No complaints so far.

Very satisfied with the car. Definitely worth the price. Friends and I were on a road trip to Penang. We had 5 adults and 2 children from KL to Penang. Only one seat was collapsed to fit all our luggage bags. We had supplies for 3 days 2 nights each.

At Penang, after checking in and all luggage bags stored in the rented apartment, all seats were available again. We had 7 adults with 2 children, seated comfortably. I had the opportunity to try the seats at row 2 and row 3. While the last row may be slightly cramped but it is more spacious than other MPVs I tried.

Earlier, my car was used to ferry people and stuffs for a youth camp at Gopeng. We had 5 people in the car, along with our luggage bags enough for 5 days 4 nights and more stuffs for the camp secretariat. All seated comfortably and space was enough to carry so much!

Very powerful and not a time I felt the car need anything more although it always seems to feel better if it is a 2.0 engine!

Love the Exora!

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I drove the car to Penang and back to KL last week. Was supposed to send the car for first servicing at 1,000 km but it has clocked 1,400km by the time I am available to send it to the service centre.

My dad said that we shouldn’t drive over 100km/h for at least the first 1,000km so to protect the car engine and it will ensure the engine works longer. Not sure if it is true but driving 90km/h to 100km/h on the highway to Penang was quite a distance and can be boring.

On the way back to KL, half way through the journey, we reached 1,000km and boy, my mom stepped on the accelerator and sped away to reach KL faster.

Nearest to home is the Proton service centre at Pandan Jaya. Sent the car there at about 9.30am. The receptionist explained the first service and what will be covered. Owners get the first 3 servicing with free labour cost but must be utilised within a year. Next service will be at 5,000km mileage.

I told the mechanics of a list of things I found
1. Petrol smell in the car right after refueling
2. Smell of burnt rubber twice during our KL-Penang-KL journey
3. Squeaking sound under the driver accelerator part when going over bumps
4. Right side mirror does not adjust to the right angle enough. (This can’t be adjusted, the mechanic said)

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The cost was RM152 and I got a free car wash too.

I find myself filling in feedback forms before collecting my car from the dealer and before I leave the service centre. This makes me feel that Proton is serious in maintaining good customer service throughout.

After servicing, I drove the car to Teluk Intan on Friday and back to KL on Saturday. The squeaking sound is no more to be heard and no smell of burnt rubber too. There is still some smell after refuelling the car though. Not sure how to rectify this.

Saudara Pengarang,

Akhir-akhir ini, terbuka kembali bicara tentang sekolah satu aliran memandangkan isu kerapuhan perpaduan kaum timbul dek pelbagai peristiwa yang memporak-perandakan keutuhan integrasi nasional. Penulis berdiri di antara setuju dan tidak setuju dengan sekolah satu aliran dan memohon izin untuk melontarkan pendapat yang berbeza.

Pertamanya, isu kerapuhan perpaduan kaum wujud kerana manusia mempunyai perbezaan pendapat dan pandangan mengikut keperluan dan darjat kehidupan. Perpaduan satu kaum sahaja pun sukar dicapai, inikan pula perpaduan pelbagai kaum. Kejayaan kita hidup dalam keadaan aman dan damai lebih daripada 60 tahun merupakan keunikan Malaysia dan kita harus meraikan keharmonian ini.

Kedua, perpaduan kaum merupakan satu perjalanan yang tidak mudah. Malah usaha berterusan harus dilakukan setiap hari, setiap saat, bukannya hanya setiap tahun pada Hari Kebangsaan atau Hari Malaysia atau apabila berlaku insiden yang memisahkan kita. Malaysia juga memerlukan inisiatif yang mungkin kecil tetapi mampu menyatu padukan rakyat. Besar kemungkinan tidak memerlukan usaha yang begitu sukar dan payah seperti menyatukan semua aliran sekolah.

Tidak dinafikan bahawa sistem pendidikan merupakan tunjang utama negara. Namun, tiada salah dan keburukannya jika sekolah pelbagai aliran masih diteruskan. Akan tetapi, jangan dibataskan satu kaum sahaja yang boleh menggunakan kemudahan sekolah-sekolah ini. [Continue Reading…]

Early this year, my Dad says he sponsors me RM10,000 to buy a car and he will drive my existing car. His old junk will need to change. True enough, that junk carried a trade-in price of only RM600!

Friends who know me said “Is time lahh Hoong Ling!”

I never like buying a car and I have expected to drive my good old Iswara till it becomes a junk. The Proton Iswara was my first and only car. Another reason not to buy a car because is a liability. I plan on only buying assets till age 40 and let those assets and passive income pays my liabilities.

I wanted something versatile, useful, multi-purpose and can last long, something within RM60,000. First choice was a pickup and almost ended up buying a Mazda BT-50 (yes is higher than 60k) yet my Dad disagreed. I, too felt I may not be able to park the huge car well.

Then I thought of an MPV and a few models cane about but after some research, Proton Exora seems to fit the bill. Feedback and many reviews said the car beats Toyota Avanza and Nissan Grand Livina. To my surprise, there were many owners who praised the car and how it is worth the money spent.

I decided without even a test drive. I wanted to buy within 60k so I chose the Standard AT variant until Proton gave so much discounts, loyalty bonus, NCD and rebates that even the Executive CVT variant with turbo engine was within 60k. It seems the turbo CFE engine should be better to pull the heavy car, threfore more power and more fuel efficient.

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I did not choose the Premium or Super Premium as I only wnat a car,not too much of the luxuries. I also prefer the fabric seats over leather offered by the two higher spec variants.

Some reviews
1. The car has fuel empty indicator when I collected it yesterday and the dealer gave a reminder to first refuel before going anywhere. I drove to the nearest petrol station about 1km away but the car stopped completely about 100m away from the petrol station! I was lucky to have 4 young men who stopped their two bikes to help me push the car to the station.

The empty tank quenched 55.6 litres of petrol. At RM2.05 per litre, it was RM114 for a full tank.

When I told the dealer, he called immediately and said will feedback to Proton as this has never happened before.

2. I like the smooth drive and handling so far. The space is really a bonus. I’m also impressed with the crash tests Exora passed. For Proton to build this car locally including the design, I’m very impressed with its progress. Partly also because I’m so patriotic and “Gunalah Barangan Buatan Malaysia”, I am willing to give it a try. Furthermore the car model is not new, went through a few generations and progress much since it was first launched.

3. I went on to get the car tinted first thing. Added car visor and arm rest too. The Premiums variants come with these luxuries.

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The local accessories shop at Pandan Jaya Powertech Automart is a neighborhood shop, with decent charges, good quality products and they never try to upsell you. Yet they will suggest good add-ons for your car.

Car tint, visor, arm rest, a pair of car hook and anti-slip pad was RM800. There are actually free gifts by the dealer which include a few of these but I opted for cash rebates. I was also given a voucher for an option of RM400 discount for tinting or a free GPS. Yet I still prefer Powertech Automart. I should go collect the free GPS soon.

4.

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I only clock 56km so far. I was shocked when I hear the car engine still produce sound even after I shut the engine and locked the car. I was deaf on the left so I first thought it was another car with engine on nearby but to my surprise it was my car! After a google research, it is actually the Auto Cool function for the CFE engine and it runs the fan to cool the engine. Wow, quite cool.

5. My car comes with 3 years warranty with 4 years extension as part of Proton promotion so is 7 years in total. However, it must be serviced as scheduled at Proton service centres only and no modifications even altering of the wiring is not allowed.

6. The socket plug (cigarette lighter) wasn’t working after a day. I went to repair it – the fuse was replaced. Not Proton’s fault though. I was told not to rotate any plug once it is plugged in the socket. Well in my old Iswara, I did rotated some plugs too and the socket worked well for a long time.

Some improvements I wish to have in the Exora Executive CVT are
– a USB connecter to play mp3 songs but there is a Aux 3.5mm jack in which may be helpful. I’ve yet to try it. If I were to change a car entertainment system, which alters the wiring, warranty is void. Salesman says if the service centre I frequent is willing to help install a new audio system, they will still provide warranty.
– arm rest
– more sound insulation as the engine is quite noisy but not disturbing for now

Will write more as I test the car further. Thanks for reading.

This morning was a meaningful one. There was a health carnival held at the Rukun Tetangga at Brickfields, right beside YMCA.

It was free admission for the public. People who registered can get free tests for BMI, blood pressure, blood glucose, cholesterol and subsidized mammogram for ladies. There were also booths for Traditional Chinese Medicine treatment, organ donation pledge and doctors consultations from Life Care Centre. To add on to the already long list, there were also beauty talks and health talks with free physiotherapy.

All photos below courtesy of Danny Chew from the Chew Association

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Registration started as early as 8.30 am

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The counter got merrier later

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"What's my height?" at the BMI corner

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2 drops of blood - one for blood glucose, one for cholesterol

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Health tests and mammogram booth

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Beauty talk

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Health talk by a physiotherapist who taught how to exercise properly

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What is organ donation? Ali (right) from National Transplany Resource Centre answer queries

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Hoong Ling (left), National Ambassador for Organ Donation, discusses a topic with Ali (right)

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Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) booth

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Chinese Physician, Chew Wah Chye in action

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Treatment for a patient at the TCM booth

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Group photo for the day