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US West Coast Roadtrip in 911 3.2: What to prepare for?

I'm planning on doing a West Coast roadtrip from Seattle to LA and back again in the upcoming Christmas break in my 87 911 3.2 Targa.

What should I prepare for and bring with me? It's gonna be lot of miles



Top of mind:
- Oil!
- DME relay replaced to solid state
- New battery installed

Last edited by auchenberg; 11-17-2019 at 12:12 PM..
Old 11-17-2019, 12:09 PM
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Do you have the OEM toolkit? Lots of handy stuff there.

The previous owner of my car really seemed to know his stuff. Here's what I found in my (his) car:
- OEM Toolkit/Spare/Jack (No idea if the spare actually works or not)
- Powered Air pump
- Tons of fuses
- DME Relay
- New spare fan belt
- Tire pressure gauge

I would add some kind of flat-fix for emergencies. I personally wouldn't want to mess with the spare tire. Also...don't forget your rim key if you have one. Oh...and a fire extiguisher.

Good luck from a fellow Seattle-ite.

John
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Old 11-17-2019, 12:36 PM
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That time of year you may see snow in several places between seattle and LA, that would be my number one concern. Maybe keep a blanket or two and a small shovel like the collapsible army style. Additionally a set of tire chains may come in handy.
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Old 11-17-2019, 01:07 PM
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Whatever you prepare for won’t be the problem...
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Old 11-17-2019, 03:03 PM
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Let's see ... AAA card, cell phone , portable battery, flashlight ... for anything more, you are practically within 2 hours of a Porsche shop all along the west coast !

Your targa top seals fine, right ?
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Old 11-17-2019, 07:03 PM
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Boy, does that sound like a good time! One of those jumpstart batteries would be good, Can also use some to charge your phone.Have a great trip.
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Old 11-17-2019, 07:10 PM
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Make sure your car is on reasonably new M+S rated tires and not som slick summer shoes.

DME relay and fan belt. And some tools, if no factory took kit.
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Old 11-17-2019, 07:12 PM
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A spare CDI box is always in my toolbox when I'm on a long trip
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Old 11-17-2019, 07:55 PM
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Old 11-17-2019, 08:24 PM
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Prepare for snow either in S Oregon but definitely on Mt Shasta or even on the coast route. You will need heat, and all the stuff mentioned above. You are courageous.
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Old 11-17-2019, 08:46 PM
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Be prepared but also be able to relax and enjoy the trip.
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Old 11-17-2019, 09:16 PM
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It's not very far. Just make sure you have a good time.
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Old 11-17-2019, 10:24 PM
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That is an easy trip. I drove my 85 Carrera to Key West, FL and back home in a week. 4,500 miles. No issues. I have driven my 911 in 40 states and Canada. My goal is to hit all the 48 lower states.

The things that are just smart to carry. A can of fix a flat, and the air pump and make use it really works. A spare DME relay of course, a few spare fuses, one or two of each size. Of course the factory tool kit, and a spare fan belt.

One thing I carry all the time: An 18 inch long piece of string trimmer line. If the pull handle for the gas flap breaks, you can get that fuel door open by looping the string trimmer line under the back edge of the door, and move it towards the front of the car to catch the little finger that holds the door closed. Open it normally, take a look, and then try to do it with the string. Easy Peazy once you know what to do.

Of course expect to burn oil. Have some oil, and a funnel to add the oil.
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Old 11-18-2019, 07:20 AM
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Fresh fluids, good brakes, good A/S tires, small 12v compressor, tire plugs, simple hand tools, a list of Porsche indy shops along your route, AAA towing membership, cash, a hot co-pilot.

What else?
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Old 11-18-2019, 07:47 AM
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If snow hits the Mt Shasta/Siskiyou Pass area, you might want to cut over to the coast further south.

Take the 101 out of LA...the I5 is a seriously boring drive from North of LA to Redding. I do it several times a year.
Old 11-18-2019, 08:42 PM
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I did the Seattle-LA trip in May. As other have said Snow is going to be the main concern - even in May it snowed at some places, though not enough to cover the road or be a problem. I did the trip in 3ish days. While roads are cleared if you get in a storm then you're going to have to drive through. Last christmas every mountain pass in Washington and Oregon was under deep snow, I know because I drove through them (not in a 911).

I would pack chains and make sure your heat is working. You will also need to make sure you have new wiper blades, check your windshield washers are working. A spare container of de-icing wash as well. Survival gear like blankets, shovel are a good idea as well. A snatch strap if you're super paranoid. I saw a jeep slide into a ditch and he was there until someone else turned up with a strap.
ALso, days are short so if you can get extra lighting power you'll appreciate it.

I would consider going up the coastal way and coming back the inland way. For me, the trip down eastern washington and linking up with the 395 in California is one of the best road trips anywhere. You'll have passes in/out of Seattle, through Oregon and into California, as well as around Mammoth. These are all main roads and will be clear unless you're in a storm.

Main thing is to commit and enjoy - I'd pre-book accomodation because can be a busy time of year. Don't get scared of the bad weather chances are you'll outdrive any one single storm system, and if you get clear, crisp winter days it will be fantastic. The 911 is a great winter car with tremendous heat and great traction.
Old 11-21-2019, 09:37 PM
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I did have an experience driving to Baker OR from Seattle in the winter and the car was absolutely blasted by small rocks and sand. Maybe consider a car bra.

I live in Seattle and have one that you can have.
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Old 11-22-2019, 08:28 AM
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:33 AM
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auchenberg, I have done that trip 6-7 times when I lived in Olympia, all in January with one exception (Parade 2008 San Diego in Jul). Getting over the Siskiyous was the most perilous part of the journey both leaving and returning. That was my route to get the hell out of the dark and dreary as quick as I could and maximize my time south. I had to use tire cables a few times but only to leave my house and they were only on for 100-200yds. Bagged them and carried them with me just in case. I tried to avoid those areas needing them on my return northward. My trips south always took me to the deserts east of San Diego and then wandering my way up thru Death Valley and out to the Extraterrestial highway for some high speed touring. But always a visit to San Diego to visit friends and Las Vegas.

My wife would fly to LA, SFO, SAN, LAS, as she was not a roadtrip gal. Destination was her gig, mine was the journey. I'd meet her there for a few days and then off I'd go. But every trip had a coastal journey either north or south down the Highway 1 from or to Monterey and LA. (check for road closures)

I have a trip kit that I always carry just in case. It contains the basics; fuses, electrical tape, safety wire, gorilla tape, spare dme and fan belts, spare coil, dist cap/rotor/plugs, oil/spout, torque wrench, gloves, plastic bags, window switch or 2, jumper wire/paper clips and a few other small odds and ends. These all fit in a small mechanics bag.

I also carry my air pump/can o fix a flat/tire plugs and the spare tire because I was roadtripping into the unknowns solo. And stuff to clean the windows of course.

I also had AAA plus, my cell, and a small survival kit, you just never know.

Should be a fun trip, but don't f/with your car too much before you go, if its ready, rock on. Have a blast. Oh and sunglasses, don;t forget these, its sunny down there and you will have been deprived since September.
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Old 11-22-2019, 10:55 AM
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I also have a road trip kit like that to cover some unforeseen problems. There are some things with which I tend to be redundant if I deem them extra important, like a couple spare keys in different locations and another pair of sunglasses so when it gets sunny and then I realize I left my others on the counter when I picked up some munchies while getting gas two hours ago...
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Old 11-22-2019, 11:08 AM
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