Last puzzler answer was incomplete. What was the final solution for detecting the Soviet diesel trucks?

Last puzzler answer was incomplete. What was the final solution for detecting the Soviet diesel trucks???

Surely it wasn’t as simple as a diesel smoke detector? :-):slight_smile:

That was th extra credit option.

Real answer would be many of the supplies were transported by water buffalo, thereby requiring a BS detector.

They said the whole program was scrapped. The govt researchers moved on to other objectives.

Now that makes sense, but the “extra credit” option left it hanging as if there had actually been a solution.

OP is correct, puzzler’s initial question, beyond asking why the emi detection method didn’t work (i.e. diesel engines don’t generate emi), also asked what corrective action was taken (presumably) to actually detect diesel trucks.

I think you may be one to something there. On the most recent episode of America’s Truck Night (that I’ve seen) one of the contesting trucks had a diesel engine. A huge plume of black smoke came out the exhaust , appeared to be on every shift. Interestingly, the diesel truck didn’t do as well as the gasoline trucks in most of the truck-to-truck contests.

I listened carefully to this puzzler’s solution on the podcast. The radio show (podcast) audio solution differs from the written version, puzzler archives. Ray said on the radio show that there was no corrective action. That was just an attempt to obfuscate, make the puzzler harder to solve. Suggesting a corrective action as a bonus question, that was just a red herring. .

Puzzlers aren’t my thing but the U.S. military also uses many diesel trucks.

I wonder if one of those AI Chat-bots could solve Car Talk puzzlers?

There are several reasons Diesel Fuel is used most often by the military. First and foremost, the U.S. military uses Diesel Fuel in tanks and trucks because Diesel Fuel is less flammable and less explosive than other fuels. Next, Diesel Engines are also less likely to stall than gasoline-fueled engines. Also, Diesel Fuel is also used in diesel engine generators to generate electricity. And, if our Allies are all using the same fuel, we can share resources more effectively. Then, there is also, the durability, efficiency, and performance offered by Diesel Power Plants.

Now to get back to the puzzler and the issues of finding Soviet Trucks delivering war supplies… The Ho Chi Minh and Sihanouk Trails were the main supply lines for the North Vietnamese. The Trails were a complex web of roads, tracks, bypasses, waterways, depots, and marshaling areas, all concealed by the jungle overgrowth…

They were some 12,000 miles in total length and they snaked through North Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia.

Yes, heavy mechanized vehicles were used, in areas not eligible for air attack in the northern areas of North Vietnam. But as the supply lines wound further south, we did try to attack, but their new choice of supply vehicle did not give off much electro-interference either…


And the reason why we did not bomb the heavy transport systems, Trains, Trucks, etc… in the north of North Vietnam was China…

The rules of engagement and so called “limitations” on US military conduct of the war in Vietnam weren’t just arbitrary stupidity, but were there for a good reason. Our ground involvement in the Vietnam War, starting in 1964, came only 11 years after the conclusion of the Korean War. A war whose aggressive conduct, pursuing the enemy all the way up to the Chinese border based on MacArthur’s mistaken belief that the Chinese would do nothing, resulted in the unpleasant and wholly unwelcome surprise of the Chinese jumping in and pushing us all the way back to South Korea.

Turns out the Chinese don’t like a hostile power on their border any more than we would if somebody invaded Mexico and pushed all the way up to the Rio Grande.

Memories of the Korean War were still fresh during the Vietnam War. And guess which country also just happened to be on North Vietnam’s northern border?