Top Ten Things Not to Do During A Lunar Rover Mission in 1971

Top Ten Things Not to Do

The U.S. Apollo Lunar Roving Vehicle from
Apollo 15 on the Moon in 1971

 

This week marks the 49th anniversary of Appollo 15 Astronauts using a vehicle to drive on the moon. Of course, we all want to go with them, and through the magic of our imagination, we can. We do have to follow a few rules, and so this list has been developed to keep you from causing a tear in the time continuum. Hop aboard the imagination time thingy, and off we go.

Top Ten Things Not to Do During a Lunar Rover Mission in 1971.

10 If you go, do not ask Dave Scott, the mission commander, if you can take Jim Irwin’s place on the ride. If you do, at best, Dave may not hear you through the sunspot static. At worse, Dave will let you drive. (That was smart, Michael. You have no idea how to work this thing, and you are now headed for that vast crater. Of course, this buggy can be replaced for $10,000,000. You can pay for it out of your book royalties. Hahaha)

9 If you go, do not ignore Tiny the WWF champ when he gives you a direction from mission control. If you do, at best, Tiny will provide you with one more chance. At worst, you think you are safe from Tiny up here on the moon. (Feel that heat, Mark. That is the pre-ignition warm-up of the rocket in your pants. You see, Tiny can put you in orbit. It looks like the countdown has begun.)

8 If you go, do not complain about the 8 MPH speed of the lunar rover. If you do, at best, you won’t get another ride. At worst, the commander will take you out to the furthest point and leave you there. (You now need to know what “walk back limit” means, Mica. It is the furthest point you can go and yet walk back to the lunar lander before your oxygen runs out. I hope you can hold your breath cause you were dropped off outside the walk back limit.)

7 If you go, do not mess with the equipment. If you do, at best you won’t mess up anything. At worst, you will tinker with the Sun shadow device. (That was the one thing not to touch, Moses. It is the navigational device that keeps the lunar rover in contact with the lander using the sun. The purpose is so the rover doesn’t get lost. Good thing there is still a gyro device, or you might get a tour of the dark side of the moon.)

6 If you go, do not plug your phone into the battery system to play tunes. If you do, at best, someone will tell you to knock it off. At worst, playing your music will wear down the batteries. (The only power cells carried on the mission are 36 volt, silver-zinc potassium hydroxide non-rechargeable batteries. They are suitable for a 57-mile range. Sure hope you are not out that far, Marcus.)

5 If you go, do not ask if we are there yet. If you do, at best, Dave Scott will ignore you. At worst, he will finally give up and tell you to walk back to the lander. (Since the maximum distance traveled on the lunar rover during the Apollo mission was 17.25 miles, Miguel it is no wonder Dave wants you out of the vehicle.)

4 If you go, do not ask how far to the next rest area. If you do, at best, Dave Scott will be talking to Mission Control. At worst, he will give you additional instructions on the capabilities of your suit. (You need to relax, Mitchell. There are no rest areas on the moon. Gives new meaning to the term, “hold it.”)

3 If you go, do not tell Dave Scott someone stole the steering wheel. If you do, at best, Dave will think you are joking. At worst, he’ll realize you know nothing about the lunar rover. (The rover is controlled by a T-stick controller, Milo. Push forward and you go ahead. Right or left to go right or left. Pull back, and the brakes are engaged. Press that little button while pulling back, and the rover goes into reverse. Dave is now asking you to get out of the control seat. You blame him?)

2 If you go, do not let Dave Scott know you have AAA in case of a breakdown. If you do, at best, he’ll think you are nuts. At worst, he will call Mission Contro and ask permission to lock you in the lander. (The whole idea of AAA on the moon is laughable, Miles. The fact that you said that out loud gives Dave grave concerns about the mission safety.)

1 If you go, do not offer to play your road trip CD. If you do, at best, you will get a polite decline. At worst, you’ll now have to explain what a CD is. (The CD was first sold in 1982, Marshall. The crew has never heard of it. It is not going to help to turn up the volume on Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again.” You have these guys concerned.)

75 comments

  1. Gwen M. Plano · ·

    No AAA? I discovered that it’s best not to travel if you don’t have a membership. πŸ˜€ Great list, John. I always learn a lot through your countdowns.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Gwen. I try to put some facts among the tons of fiction. Makes good sauce. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Some people really shouldn’t time travel. 😁

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Most of the folks that go with me should stay home for sure. Thanks, Charles.

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      1. Good point. Yet, it’s hard to argue against your travel rates.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah. Drinks included.

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  3. Great list, John! Gosh, I thought CDs have been around longer. Happy Monday!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They were invented in the late 70s but only were commericalized in the eighties.

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      1. You are a wealth of information, John. πŸ™‚

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      2. The research turns up all kinds of things.

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  4. Looks like another mission I shouldn’t be on. I thought they would appreciate some Pink Floyd. You think Tiny can rocket me back to the lander before…I guess not. Does this time travel thing work from up here?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tiny wants all the attention so he is issuring directions left and right. I think he gets a kick out of the pant rocket. Yes, the time travel thing works everywhere. Thanks, Dan

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  5. Good ones! I particularly like the role of playing tunes.

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    1. Thank you, Liz. 😁

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      1. You’re welcome, John.

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  6. My favorite is Number 9 – you know how I love to play with Tiny’s head!!

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    1. Yes, you do. Don’t ever give him your address though.😁

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      1. hahaha, just how brave do you think I am?!!

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      2. Braver than me I think.

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  7. I don’t care how much it would cost to replace, I’d still love to take that buggy for a ride. πŸ™‚

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    1. There are three of them just waiting for you on the moon. All you have to do is go get them.

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      1. Should be pretty easy. πŸ™‚

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      2. Yeah. What the heck. An atlas rocket and your done. Easy peasy.

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  8. I have issues with #6 – I prefer my own music.

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    1. I don’t blame you. πŸ˜‚

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  9. Do you think the Commander would be more amenable to the tunes in #1 if we named the CD “Luny Tunes”?

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    1. Nice one, Linda. Yes, I think he would. πŸ˜‚

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  10. … and don’t remark that the lunar rover looks like it was made up with junk from the scrap yard!

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    1. Hahaha. It actually took 17 months from start to lunar landing to conceptualize and build. Fantastic. Yes it does look like a piece of junk.

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  11. Although a different rover, you reminded me of this. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QFvNhsWMU0c

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    1. Loved it Frank. Thanks.

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  12. “Don’t mess with the equipment” is ALWAYS a good idea, John. Don’t you just hate when somebody who’s riding in your new car for the first time starts twirling buttons and asking, “What’s this for?” Almost as bad as taking your car in for service and having them move your seat and mirrors!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Or forget the grease mat on the floor. Pet peeves.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. D.L. Finn, Author · ·

    Great list John:) That’s a ride I would have loved to have done. I’ll keep it on my bucket list.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too, Denise. 😊

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  14. True, dear John! The Lunar mission demands responsibility. What would Lucy & Twiggy do on the Moon if they might travel there?

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    1. They woud have a lot of fun jumping in the air and going far and wide in leaps and bounds.

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      1. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ And their friends Flamingo, Octopus, Mr. Eel would make the party! πŸ™‚

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      2. They woud all be bouncing around too.

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      3. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Ha-ha-ha! True, dear John!

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  15. My top one would be not to get a puncture – in my space suit, that is!

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    1. Good thinking.

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  16. Laugh out loud funny, John. This one made me splutter … “There are no rest areas on the moon. Gives new meaning to the term, β€œhold it.”) πŸ˜‚

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    1. Yes.Hold it is the operative command. πŸ˜€

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  17. It’s not AAA, Miles… It’s either LRA – yanno Lunar Rover Association πŸ˜‰
    This was a hoot and a half, John!

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    1. Thank you, Dale. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

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      1. πŸ™‚

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  18. Oh, the days of the moon missions. In some ways, we’ve taken a step back. Had to smile at number 6. What did we do without cell phones in those days? (I really think we were better off.)

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    1. Maybe we were. 😁

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  19. Great list, John! Needed those smiles, especially loved 4 & 6. πŸ™‚

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    1. I’m glad you got some smiles.

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  20. Let’s collect license plates as we drive.

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    1. And play “I Spy.”

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  21. So lemme get this straight. There really is NO steering wheel?

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    1. No steering wheel.

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      1. I guess you don’t need one when you’re traveling on wide open roads, but still . . .

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      2. And at 8 miles per hour.

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  22. A great post, John. 49 years already. Next year’s going to be a big party and, hopefully, without social distancing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like that idea, Robbie. πŸ˜€

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  23. I love these tidbits of history, John, and of course, your humor is thrown in! Great list!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Jan. Always good to smile and learn. 😊

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  24. I loved this John. Many people have no idea we had more than one trip to the moon. I hope they read your post. Last October my husband’s Navy squadron reunion was hosted by one of his squadron mates, an Apollo astronaut. His retirement job at the Kennedy Space Center is being head of the visitor center. I think you know how wonderful that reunion was. I should have sang “On the Road Again” to the guys when we were all on the bus. Then again, they might have dropped me off by the river with gators. Hmm… Maybe Tiny could have helped me.

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    1. Hahahaha. Tiny definately would have given you a hand, Jennie. I’ll bet that reunion was fun. 😁

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      1. It was wonderful, John! And tell Tiny thanks. πŸ™‚

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      2. Tiny says you are welcome. 😊

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      3. πŸ˜€

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  25. $10,000,000 and no windshield?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hahaha. Can you imagine calling for a windshield repair guy up there. Thanks, Andrew.😁

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