Rock Sliders Guide: Protect the Panels of Your Toyota Hilux from Rocks and Boulders

Rock Sliders Guide: Protect the Panels of Your Toyota Hilux from Rocks and Boulders

Many car makers see the Aussie Outback as the ultimate testing ground before releasing their final product to the market. 4WDs, utes and SUVs are battered to breaking point. The gathered data here allows for tweaks to suspension, engines and chassis to create vehicles that are ready for any terrain. Before seeing off their new Landcruiser, Toyota traversed thousands of kilometres in the red soil, to come up with one of the best off-roading vehicles on sale today. Their efforts have trickled down into other, but no less worthy cars, like the Hilux ute, smaller Prado and the road-orientated Fortuner.

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Buying an RC Vehicle? Consider the Pros and Cons of Electric and Nitro!

Buying an RC Vehicle? Consider the Pros and Cons of Electric and Nitro!

To say that remote-controlled vehicles have come a long way would be an understatement. With the advanced technology we have today, the creation of these vehicles is state of the art, so unlike years before with the cheap versions, the models of today are designed to be truly lifelike in colours, details, and features.

Not surprisingly, the RC hobby offers a great deal of fun for people of all ages. Part of this fun comes from the variety of models available to pick from at specialised hobby stores. But, before you can get to enjoy the challenges this hobby provides, you’d have to consider an important vehicle aspect – where they get the power from.

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Car Side Steps: Protect Your Vehicle On and Off The Road

Car Side Steps: Protect Your Vehicle On and Off The Road

Though there’s debate as to where the first utility truck appeared, utes have become ingrained in Aussie culture and our way of life. They’re the vehicle making their way in almost every garage around the country. Similarly, SUVs and full-on 4WDS are battering the sales of other car types. Drivers want more space, a higher driving position, cars that can handle harsh Aussie roads, and the functionality that bigger, beefier vehicles provide. They also won’t hesitate in spending big when it comes to vehicle protection.  

Besides regular maintenance, you’ll need to spend some cash upfront to get the best out of your car. Almost every ute and 4WD has some sort of front protection, whether it’s bull or nudge bars, but the rest of the vehicle is most often overlooked. Here you have a ton of options, so things like doors, side panels and the underbody stay intact. In this respect, quality aftermarket side steps offer owners versatility and functionality. They shield the car from road debris and side-impact, and give drivers and passengers easier access when getting in or out.  

What are Side Steps?  

Side steps are the platforms fitted to either side of the vehicle and span the length of the doors. They provide a stepping area so passengers can get in and out of taller vehicles easily. Besides this, they offer many benefits, the largest being that they enhance side protection with the bars protruding out further than the overall width of the vehicle.  

car side steps
source: goldsun.co.in

Build and Materials 

Side steps are made of high-grade powder coated stainless steel or sturdy aluminium in varying thickness depending on the vehicle and brand. The supplied mounting brackets are made of the same durable materials. Thicker variants are well-suited to cars with higher ground clearance. As for length, aftermarket side steps should extend the entire length of the doors. You’ll find tapered and straight edge side steps, and this is more a matter of preference. Widths average around 10 centimetres, but you’ll also find wider side steps, up to 18 centimetres.  

The stepping area differs with different designs. This is usually positioned directly below each door, or along the whole bar. The latter are commonly referred to as running boards, but the purpose is similar. Stepping areas are often covered with textured rubber or plastic inserts to provide for better grip when entering and leaving the vehicle.  

Used for Side Protection 

Side steps are installed for convenience and looks, but also as protective gear. They are wider than the rest of the car and this helps in many driving conditions. For instance, in car parks, doors and side panels won’t sustain any dents or scratches from careless drivers slamming open their doors. They’ll be no nasty damage to paintwork. In addition, when driving on gravel or unsealed roads, side steps keep spraying debris, rocks and dirt from reaching the doors or damaging any part of the side panels. Many drivers often combine side steps with side brush bars for the best side protection when driving off-road. Branches, stones and any sharp objects won’t pose any risks.  

car side steps
source: pegasus4x4.com

Used for Easier Entry and Exit 

Side steps are installed so that passengers and drivers can enter and exit vehicles easier. SUVs, utes and 4WD have higher ground clearance than other cars, and this can be a problem for children, elderly people and anyone a bit shorter. The steps lay lower and provide adequate space for bigger or smaller feet. Also, on exiting the vehicle, you won’t need to jump out, but can use the stepping platform to exit safely.  

This is convenient in that you won’t be scraping those expensive leather or Alcantara seats you optioned with your car. Side supports in seats are higher, and getting in or out of the vehicle can be a challenge. This is virtually eliminated with side steps. Many people choose side steps because they provide a cleaning surface before getting in the car. You can wipe any mud or dirt off the steps and won’t be ruining the carpet afterwards. Some aftermarket side steps have a perforated design that lets mud and water seep through, so they don’t collect on the surface. These are easier to clean than solid platforms.  

Side Steps, Running Boards, Nerf Bars – What’s the difference?  

Side steps and running boards are used interchangeably, though there are slight but significant differences. Side steps are generally narrower, and mounted lower. Running boards are wider and have a flush fit against the car. The steps in side steps are separated from the rest of the platform, whereas in running boards they cover the larger part of the board. Slightly different are nerf bars, which are often narrower tubes and are usually longer and set lower than either side steps or running boards. For off-road use, you can also find rocker bars that help 4WDs over big rocks and boulders, and ensure that there’s no damage to the underbody and chassis.  

Buying and Installation 

car side steps
source: robsmagic.com

Aftermarket side steps are sold for most SUVs, 4WDs and utes. Look for side steps that fit your car. Steel variants are generally more expensive, but are regarded as more durable. Go for the design that best suits your vehicle. As for installation, side steps are easily and quickly bolted on the chassis in multiple points with solid brackets to ensure a tight fit. The benefit of not having to drill is obvious, and you can easily remove them just as quickly.  

Toyota Landcruiser Exhaust Upgrade: Improve Performance on Different Road Surfaces

Toyota Landcruiser Exhaust Upgrade: Improve Performance on Different Road Surfaces

The latest Landcruiser to hit the showrooms is the 300 series. It is an evolution of a nameplate with one of the longest production runs in automotive history. With seven decades of continual refinement, the Landcruiser has defined the off-road segment. Its popularity is evident on Aussie streets as well as the outback, and thousands of Australians swear by its go-anywhere capabilities. Models have been tailored to tackle any terrain, as well as provide the best towing performance. An all-around family, work and recreational vehicle you’d want in the garage. 

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Your Guide to 4X4 Accessories for Road Trips

Your Guide to 4X4 Accessories for Road Trips

If you love travelling with one of the most versatile vehicles available to us, the mighty 4X4 ute, you probably want to take advantage of everything it offers. If you love using your vehicle to go on off-road camping trips, regardless of whether you are going hiking, mountain biking, or you like cycling in nature or simply want to set up camp and spend some time enjoying nature, there is an abundance of accessories you can get to take your 4X4 experience to the next level.

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Everything You Need to Know About POS Hardware

Everything You Need to Know About POS Hardware

What is a POS System?

girl checking the receipt
source: magestore.com

POS, also known as a point of sale system, is an integral part of any retail business. Whether looking to improve the sales, marketing, delivery process or anything else, you will need the right POS system in order to achieve these goals. POS is a combination of hardware and software that manage the whole checkout process. Depending on the system and company, some of them can handle payroll, scheduling, reporting and back-office management.

The most important and core feature is that the POS hardware system can accept multiple payment options like credit and debit cards, cash and mobile payments. It’s even said that POS hardware is preparing for accepting the newest paying method – bitcoin.

What Are the Necessary Hardware Components of a POS System?

girl smiling in front of computer while working
source: techradar.com

Display Unit

This is the core of every POS system because it’s the primary interface used to process orders and manage the checkout process. Through it, you and your employers will be able to see customer information, performance data, inventory and so on. All in all, it is a crucial component of a POS store.

Terminal

The most important thing you need to know about the terminal is that it’s the hardware interface that customers use to make payments. While in the past, wired terminals were the main choice for terminals, however, this has changed, and nowadays, POS systems can also provide you with wireless handheld terminals that can be moved at different locations. Thanks to them, you can improve the customer experience while increasing the employees’ efficiency as they can finalise the purchase without going to the checkout counters.

Input Devices

The truth is that all POS systems can rely on similar input devices like the mouse and keyboard, the main difference is in their assessment. For instance, some of them are hardware attached to the terminals, while other models can be accessed through the software on the display unit itself.

Card Reader

As the name implies, the card reader is designed to read the cards through the magnetic strip. These readers are designed for both debit and credit cards, but they can also scan ID cards in order to track sales from multiple employees on the same device.

Barcode Scanner

Barcode scanners can certainly facilitate the job of employees as they speed up the checkout process by obtaining the needed product information through their barcode. That way, the scanner adds the product/s to the checkout list without doing it manually. In other words, these scanners are connected to the POS system’s inventory management module in order to update the product stock levels once a product is sold.

Cash Drawer

Although these days people seem to prefer payment via credit and debit cards, still there are lots of people who still choose to pay in cash. That being said, it is understandable why today’s modern POS systems still offer cash drawers. That being said, today’s POS system providers offer different types of cash drawers and usually, all of them include key locks or removable cash trays for security.

The most common cash drawers are printer driven and connected by a telephone-style cable which is also known as an RJ12 connector. This cable is designed to be directly plugged into the drawer kick (DK) port on the receipt printer. Usually, these drawers are a standard 24 volt because the same voltage is used by the printer to activate the internal solenoid in order to open the cash drawer. Generally speaking, you can choose from three types of cash drawers: flip-top, compact and standard full-size cash drawer. Once you have the needed type, all you have to do is to set it up.

Receipt Printer

POS systems come with a receipt printer while today’s POS systems can also come with receipt delivery options through email and text.

Display Pole

The display pole is designed to provide customers with a running total of items scanned, including their number, weight, price and some other needed information like GST and so on.

The most important thing you need to know is that the best POS systems for your business can mainly depend on your business and the products you sell. Nowadays, you can choose from different types of POS systems like restaurant POS systems, retail POS systems, mobile POS solutions, grocery and convenience store POS systems, and so on. One thing is certain, regardless of the type of POS system you need, the chosen one will provide you with all of the essential tools in order to be successful. They also help you have a clear picture of your products and the products your customer is looking for. They can also reduce the time customer spend at check out, reduce the error rate and so much more. If not sure which is the right POS system for you, consulting with a professional is the best option you have in order to make the right choice.