Episode 429 – World’s Biggest Jeep Show Cancelled

Merideth Evasew Extreme Terrain’s hottest video host right now and she’s been cranking out the tech advice and demos in each of Extreme Terrain’s series of Throttle Out videos. And they’ve just released another great episode as part of Extreme Terrain’s monthly YouTube video series. In this month’s edition of XT’s Throttle Out, Mer grabs the keys to a very lucky XT customer’s JLU for some premium upgrades.Be sure to watch this month’s Throttle Out from Extreme Terrain where form and function come together to create one bad-ass Jeep. https://www.extremeterrain.com/throttleout-march-2020-2.html

This Week In Jeep:

Easter Jeep Safari 2020 – CANCELLED

Utah has just had the WORST time with things lately. First it was news a couple weeks ago that the Easter Jeep Safari, easily one of the largest Jeep events on the planet, had taken measures to avoid the spread of the Coronavirus by shutting down the vendor show. Easily one of the bigger draws for this event, as manufacturers usually have some of their best rigs on display, and are showcasing the newest gear for the Jeep world. Jeep always brings out a couple concept rigs, and there’s always enough Jeep eye candy around to satisfy even the thirstiest of enthusiasts. Despite this, some vendors were a little more gung-ho, and weren’t about to let this get in the way of getting involved with the masses of Jeepers that flood MOAB Utah for this event every year. And I gotta give them credit too. Companies like Metal Cloak, who I have always had a lot of respect for, were going to set up shop right there on the side of the road leading into town if that’s what they had to do to maintain a presence at the event and give the fans what they’re looking for.  Local businesses, and the companies involved with the event were willing to take extra measures, even willing to donate supplies and whatever else was needed to mitigate the risk and keep the vendor show open. And the Jeepers, well, we’re all die hard anyways, and most weren’t going to let a little virus outbreak ruin their long laid plans. But the ruling passed, and the vendor show was no more. Then Salt Lake City got shaken to the core, literally, with a decent earthquake today measuring 5.7 on the richter scale. Granted Salt Lake is a good three hours from MOAB,but  it’s still a bit of more bad news for the state already dealing with the pandemic. Unfortunately Murphy’s law decided to pile it on a bit more. And on Tuesday March 17th (St. Patrick’s Day) … a phrase was mentioned which I have had it up to here with hearing “Out of an abundance of caution” …and you already know anything following those six words isn’t going to be good news. And it’s true. This week it was announced that the 2020 Easter Jeep Safari will officially be cancelled. Completely. Not just the vendor show, but everything, down to the last guided trail tour. And they’re all but shutting down the whole town to enforce it too. The cancellation comes the same day the Southeast Utah Health Department handed down a sweeping order that closed theaters, bars and other venues as well as limiting lodgings — from hotels, to even private and public campgrounds — to hosting only people who live and work in Moab. Their hopes are that by restricting the enjoyment of MOAB to only the residents of MOAB and shooing away any and all outsiders, that they are going to somehow completely mitigate the potential health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in Grand county. Uh-huh, good luck with that. I hope all the businesses you just signed a death warrant for will somehow find a way to survive this knife in the back and not vote your retarded ass out of office. For the first time in over 50 years, one of the worlds largest and longest running Jeep events is being canceled over a stupid virus. Red Rock 4-Wheelers said it would refund event fees to participants who had already paid to attend. I personally would like to say SCREW IT! … LETS STORM MOAB LIKE THOSE PEOPLE WERE ABOUT TO DO WITH AREA 51!  They can’t stop, ticket, or sanitize us all damnit!

I think even Jeff Goldblum would be proud of this one.

Larry Kosilla is the founder of AMMO, a company out of NY who travels around the world to restore and detail priceless pieces of automotive history. Their youtube channel has over 1.2 million subscribers, and it’s no surprise why. These guys plain and simply work magic. Restoring vehicles (sometimes priceless classic exotics) to like new condition after being abandoned, drowned, or otherwise left for dead in fields, forests and barns.  If you have ever been looking for the highest level of detailing advice, techniques, and products to use, then the video I’m about to tell you about is the only one you need to watch, and here’s why. Imagine finding a Jeep, a completely abandoned Jeep, left for dead so long, that mold and mildew were literally growing on every surface. The Jeep was in such bad shape that I’m not sure even the most die hard Jeep fan would have given it a second look. Having worked in the automotive industry for over a decade, I can assure you that I’ve seen it all. Any and every level of disgusting you can imagine. I’ve not only seen it, I’ve had to work in it. But there’s something undeniably special about rescuing an abandoned vehicle like this, one that’s going to the scrap heap and rejuvenating it, breathing new life into it to drive or wheel once again. That’s exactly what happens to the Jeep Wrangler in this video by AMMO NYC.  At the beginning, the derelict Jeep is sitting in a junkyard, and by the end, the rig is a beautiful Jurassic Park tribute vehicle that’s going to auction. The custom-painted “Headake” on the rear fender and “C.W” on the doors are a nod of the cap to a former owner who had these painted on the rig previously. However, something happened to cause this vehicle to sit long enough for things to start growing out of the paint. The video largely focuses on cleaning the Jeep to look new again, and trust me, there is a massive amount of Jeep detailing tips that even impressed me. The process they used to bring this jeep back to life is very well detailed in this video. So if you are doing a restoration of your own, this video will be one to add to your must watch list. The video never shows the Jeep running, and after sitting so long, I would imagine it is going to need a fair amount of mechanical makeover too. But who knows, maybe some new fluids and a thorough tune-up might just be enough to bring that venerable 4.0L back to life. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=SO3eH-bYtEc&feature=emb_logo

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

Suspension Types (Spring) Comparison – Part II

In the last episode, we started our multi-part series in spring comparisons. Focusing more on the differences between the different kinds of springs found under different kinds of Jeeps, and less on what we think is good or performs the best. Each spring type has its own unique characteristics, and it’s those differences that we’ll be focusing on. Last week we took a look back in time to where it all started with the leaf spring. From the history, to where they are today we covered every facet of the leaf spring. In this episode, we’re going to look at what has easily become the most popular form of suspension spring in the modern Jeep world. The coil spring.  There were rumors that clear back in the 40’s Jeep did a design study on the coil spring design but nothing allegedly came of it. Well, not until 1984 anyways when we saw them under the front end of the XJ Cherokee’s. The coil spring actually dates back to 1906 in automotive use, but that doesn’t apply specifically to Jeeps. In 1997 though, the Wrangler got its first set of coils. Jeep’s first fully coil sprung vehicle, and it pretty much set the bar for two main reasons. Coil springs are nothing more than a coiled piece of metal bar stock. They are very inexpensive to the manufacturer. They are also easy to make in a wide variety of ways, whether it’s a variable or constant rate designs. So they work, they’re cheap, they weigh less, and they take up less room.  So yea, suffice it to say, it’s not going to be anytime soon that we see Jeep steer away from a coil spring design off the factory floor. Coil springs are usually pretty easy to replace if you know what you’re doing too, making them more friendly for the backyard mechanic to do maintenance or swap them out entirely. You might need a spring compressor tool in some cases, but on many Jeeps, if you fully unload the suspension and let it droop enough, the coil springs will fall right out on their own. So swapping a coil spring can be very easy compared to getting a leaf spring off. Because a coil spring can be made into almost any length, when it comes to a lift kit, you get more choices on the lift you might want to achieve. Lift kits with coil springs can range from a mere 1-inch to over 6.5 inches of lift and beyond. Again, springs are easily produced, in whatever length a company requires. With a coil spring, you can also use a “spacer” to gain lift. Meaning, you only need to install a simple donut above or below the coil springs, and you can get an extra inch or two of lift. This is just as simple as the lift blocks for leaf springs we talked about in the last episode, but far safer and a lot easier to install in most cases. One thing about coil springs is they are a single item, with no moving parts, so there is no real maintenance to them. Once installed, you can pretty much leave them alone. Coil springs are not invincible though. Just like leaf springs, coil springs can get weak over time and sag too.

If you’ve been around enough Jeeps for long enough, you know all too well about the Jeep rear spring sag. Coil springs can also develop cracks, or even break. But that usually requires a ton of hard abuse on very old springs. In all the years I’ve wheeled and the countless rigs I’ve been with, out on the trails, I’ve never seen a coil spring break. I cannot say the same thing for leaf springs. All coil springs are not created equal either. You could have a half dozen different coil springs from different manufacturers and they would all be unique in some way or another. Whether it’s the diameter of the coil, how it was wound, how many windings or coils there are in the spring, and the overall spring rate. There are several factors to look at when choosing your springs and the same springs may not work for two different people. Here’s what I mean by that. On my last trip to the Rubicon, there were two TJ’s in the group that had metal cloak lifts. Their suspension systems were nearly identical and they were both running Metal Cloaks progressive rate springs. One guy didn’t have a problem the entire trip, and the other said he was fighting to keep his lines the entire time. He said the Jeep felt like it was trying to unload itself anytime he got into a heavy off camber situation. If you ever hear the term spring unloading, it refers to the weight transfer a vehicle goes through as it gets off camber and the suspension cycles. The vehicle’s center of gravity shifts, and there is a feeling like one end or corner of the Jeep wants to catapult itself over or under the Jeep. This isn’t something that happens to every Jeeper, and at the end of the trip he felt like it could have been other factors, but he eventually swapped those progressive rate springs for standard lift springs regardless. Again, not all coil springs are created equal, and some springs are just plain and simply going to provide a softer ride, and others will be harder. Harder springs generally won’t suffer from spring fatigue and sag as fast as softer riding springs will …but you pay for this with a harsh ride quality. Not that our Jeeps are meant to drive like a Cadillac, but still. Softer springs will generally be a little more forgiving offroad too, but won’t hold up against the kinds of high speed deflection found when wheeling out on sand or in desert racing forcing the shocks to work harder than they were designed. The kind of ride you want, and the kind of wheeling that you do are the two main factors in choosing a coil spring.  So sit down and do some research before making your next spring purchase. And note that much of the finer technical specifications for springs like spring rate won’t be found online for every manufacturer, so you may have to make some calls to get the numbers you need to make the necessary comparisons to get the right springs under your Jeep. Now some of you may be thinking, ok this is where this segment comes to an end. But we’re not quite done with springs for Jeeps yet, and we’ll be getting into one the highest performing most expensive options for a Jeep spring yet, but you’ll have to wait till next week for that.

Newbie Nuggets:

In light of this virus that seems to be dictating our every move these days I thought some laughter might be in order. I came up with a list of things you can do in your jeep – and I’m going to try to keep it clean Tony…. The mandate says we need to limit our contact with other humans and stay at least 6 feet away – it’s called Social Distancing – Hey Josh you need to add this new phrase to the glossary of terms on our website.

 Social distancing in a Jeep – at a glance:

1)  Driving by yourself – no chance of spreading the virus

2)  When driving with a group on the trails, place the jeeps at least 6 feet apart from each other.

3)  If your buddy gets stuck you can just wave at him from inside your jeep and laugh – sorry dude, I can’t get within 6 feet of you

4)  Don’t park too close to another jeep – the virus might rub off to your jeep

5)  After your run, use a drive through car wash and ask for the Lysol treatment to clean-up

6)  If your jeep is lifted high enough you can hide a lot of supplies (like TP) – just don’t tell anyone – our jeeps can’t outrun most other vehicles.

7)  Waving at other jeeps is OK, because there is no physical contact

 And here are some other fun things to keep in mind that your jeep can be used for to help you through all this madness right now;

 1)  Drive to the nearest forest/desert, etc., and go jeepin’ (bring TP). There is no one else around –perfect for alone time

2)  Jeepin with your buddy in his/her own jeep IS social distancing. Everyone drives their own jeep!

3)  Go play in the snow, or ice, or water or ?? Is your area snowing like mine is in So. Calif. right now or maybe it’s raining cats & dogs where you are? Have you always wanted to try Jeepin’ in rough weather – well what are you waiting for? You are not at work so go do it!!

4)  Play crossword puzzles (sorry, that’s a puzzle on paper for you younger listeners) in your jeep or a game on your phone.

5)  Drive to a great view location on a trail and watch a movie from your new two din LED screen. Crank up the sound, take the top off and roll down all the windows for that perfect experience

6)  Check out our Glossary of terms on the website and brush up on jeep terminology – Your jeep will thank you later

7)  Create a well ventilated virus–free zone by taking your top off and rolling your windows down

8)  Take a nap in your jeep – are the kids or wife (or husband) driving you nuts, slip out of the house and take a nap. Keep the windows up and the doors locked so they can’t get in.

9)  Proven fact that jeepin’ cures all things like depression, the blues, being bored and headaches. Ok maybe not all things but it does cure some things.

 Josh, Tony or Tammy do you have any other ideas you would add?

And now it’s time for a first  jeep experience… This week I asked my husband, Bill, to share his story…. He has been off-roading most of his life and I couldn’t wait to share his first jeep experience. He was with his mom’s jeep club out here in So. Cal called the Dirt Devils and they were following the group up a wash and it eventually narrowed to the point where they had to exit. He thought they were stuck and would need to turn around when the leader made a sharp right turn and scaled straight up a 10 foot high flat rock wall at about a 45 degree angle and he just sat there, mouth open and said to himself “crap, I HAVE to do that?”  So he turned the wheel, put the tires on the rock and just drove right up. He got to the top and looked at his mom in the passenger seat who was just as astonished and they both started laughing. It was a pivotal moment in his jeeping experience.

Obviously it left quite an impression because 22 years later he can still remember every detail down to the color of the granite face they drove up. After that experience, he has always said to himself, “why not, if someone else can do it, I can do it too”. And I can attest to that as we traverse black diamond trails now….. Now it’s a matter of what it will cost to buy the right equipment to be capable OR how much the repair will cost.

Thanks for a great story Bill and sharing your first experience. I know how special that time was with your mom from all the stories you have shared. Next week we will continue sharing newbie ideas and in the meantime, you can view some great videos on our YouTube channel Jeep 4-1-1 (https://www.youtube.com/user/backcountrydriver) with lots of tips, tricks, & techniques. The website info is in the show notes.

Interview with:

Tony recently did an impromptu call in show on Facebook Live.  We had a few calls and here are Laura and FM Jeeper.  They had some interesting things to say about how the COVID-ID virus is affecting them.

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

SUPAREE Roll Bar Storage Bag for 1997-2017 Jeep Wranglers 4-Door JK TJ LJ Only (will not fit 2-door models)$63.99 & FREE Shipping    https://amzn.to/2vExHBc

LARGE STORAGE CAPACITY: The main pocket is large enough to fit big bulky items typically found in recovery kits like snatch blocks, tree savers, tow straps and more. The main compartment also has a partition enabling you to separate the main compartment into two different storage areas. Each bag has several pockets, elastic loops, rings, and  mesh pouches that will fit all sorts of items thus greatly expanding your Jeep’s storage. HIGH QUALITY MATERIALMade of premium waterproof 600D Oxford cloth, some of the highest quality textile available for this type of storage system, making the bags both sturdy, durable, wearproof, and washable too! EASY TO INSTALL: No tools required, these mount to your roll bar using adjustable straps. Not only can these be installed IN the Jeep, you can use the built in carry handle and take these roll bar storage bags with you into the campground, or on a hike, or into the house each night for security when the top is off. PACKAGE INCLUDES: 2 PCS Roll Cage Multi-Pockets Storage Bags. Individual Bag Size: 23.7*19.1*4.6 inch. 1 year warranty

Campfire Side Chat:

Along with the usual hosts Tony, Josh, and Wendy, Travis, Bill, Sean joined in via a Zoom conference.

Jeep Weather: 


Howdy Jeeper, Mitch here, today is Friday 20th of March 2020, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report.  Most of the North America, and the world for that matter, is going into quarantine protocols and social distancing. Which is very contrary to how us Jeepers operate, since off-roading is always safer and more fun in pairs to groups, we just cannot enjoy the backwoods like we use to. This doesn’t mean to not take that top off and cruise with your family down some country roads in the light of our star, just be smart and safe out there. For those of us with most of life locked down, this week’s weather report will be different. I’m going to suggest a few YouTubers that I follow in which you can live vicariously through their past adventures. The first is TrailRecon, hosted by a guest we’ve had on this show a few times. Brad, his son, and lots of buddies go on adventures throughout the western US. He features trail 101, radios, equipment, and just well edited and beautifully filmed scenery in his adventures. Next go check out Brittany and Kevin over at Lite Brite. Driving all over the country with their Wrangler the “Stepchild” and building a Gladiator the “Foster Child”, they explore, meet, and off road with Jeepers everywhere they go. High energy couple with loads of adventures. Lastly, Check out Ben, aka JK Gear and Gadgets. He’s got lots of Jeeps in which he’s constantly tinkering with. Guy got lucky last year, and road tripped out to SEMA with a bunch of awesome Jeep guys. If you like a real regular guy, like us, just being awesome at the Jeep Life then check out Ben. All these Jeepers are just honest, personable, hardworking Jeep fans, and you truly feel like part of their crews and adventures with their great production quality. I have links to all these guys in my show notes on JeepTalkShow.com, episode 429. Now, don’t forget to use the #JeepTalkShow on social media, also don’t forget to tag @JeepTalkShow and me, for us to see those Jeeping Topless pictures. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Then find me on Instagram @jeep_out_west or go to JeepTalkShow.com/contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me. I’m Mitch and its always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where:

Jeep Beach!
April 20th – 26th
Daytona Beach, Fl.
More Info: https://www.jeepbeach.com/ https://www.facebook.com/events/571081293319608/

Shakedown Run
May 2nd
Iron Range Offroad in Gilbert, Minnesota
More Info: Info: https://ironrangeoffroad.com/

Links Mentioned in Episode 429:

This Week In Jeep: Junk Yard Jeep Rescue Video from AMMO NYC:

Extreme Terrain’s Throttle Out JLU Build:

Jeep 4-1-1 YouTube Channel:

Must Have Stuff Pick of The Week For Your Jeep:

Episode 428 – CoronaVirus Hits Easter Jeep Safari

When it comes to upgrading the headlights on your Jeep, there are literally hundreds of options out there. Your stock halogens might be fine and dandy when new but over time, their output will weaken which can lead to unsafe driving conditions at night. To educate those looking to upgrade their Wrangler headlights, Extreme Terrain’s Joe Dick recently published his Jeep Wrangler headlights buyer’s guide video. In the video he installs and reviews several headlight upgrade options, weighing their pros and cons while demonstrating their light beam and color temperature output in the controlled environment of XT’s video studios. https://www.extremeterrain.com/wrangler-jeep-headlights.html

This Week In Jeep:

2020 Easter Jeep Safari Update: RE CoronaVirus

Breaking News out of Moab Utah from The Red Rock 4 Wheelers – The organization who hosts the annual Easter Jeep Safari each and every year – Last week, The City Council of Moab, Utah, first made an announcement that the Easter Jeep Safari Vendor Show was going to be cancelled due to the CoronaVirus… BUT, their attempt to put forward an anti-gathering ordinance was initially voted down. Then, according to insiders, Red Rock 4-Wheelers, inc. started working out how to keep the Vendor Show going… Many local business owners even offered to donate any and all supplies they could to help mitigate the possibility of a COVID-19 problem. Unfortunately, an overabundance of caution prevailed, and The Red Rock 4 Wheelers made the announcement this week, that the Grand County council has put forth an emergency ordinance limiting attendance at special events. A careful review of the attendance limits on mass events has forced the Easter Jeep Safari Organizers into the position of now officially cancelling the Vendor Expo held in conjunction with the event. They apologize for the inconvenience and hope people will still come for the trails.

Recall on 2018 – 2020 Wranglers and Gladiators

It happens often with first generation vehicles. It’s inevitable that there’s going to be bugs that need to be worked out. Finding, addressing, and fixing these bugs usually takes place in the form of recalls, which happens to virtually every automaker on the planet from time to time. So when I saw a recall issued for the new Gladiator, I’m almost ready to say, it’s about time. I know, I know, that’s a bit of a pessimistic view, and there was that itty bitty recall back in the 4th quarter of 2019 where they thought some of the assembly guys forgot to put diff fluid in the rear differentials, but I don’t count that one, and I was kind of holding out hope that Jeep was going to knock it out of the park with the first gen Gladiator. Unfortunately this week, Jeep made the announcement that they are recalling some 33,000 Gladiators (and Wranglers too) to fix a problem with the clutch pressure plate. This particular recall actually sounds like more of a supply chain problem with the vendor who makes the transmissions for these vehicles. In this case it’s Aisin Seiki, a Japanese fortune 500 company who makes components and systems for the automotive industry. On the surface it seems there may have been a quality control issue with the pressure plate materials, and not a manufacturing fault from Jeep. The recall involves 2018 through 2020 Wrangler SUVs and 2020 Gladiators with manual transmissions built between August 23, 2017, and February 13, 2020. The reason for this recall stems from a report published last week by the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). This document says the clutch pressure plate could become overheated from friction, which could cause the pressure plate to fracture, which in turn could crack or fracture the transmission case. If that happened, heated debris from this rapid unplanned disassembly of the transmission housing could contact ignition sources and cause a fire.  The fractured pressure plate could also cause a loss of propulsion or drivability, which of course were to happen at the most inopportune time could result in a crash severe enough to KILL YOU. Owners of the affected vehicles should be on the lookout for a burnt-clutch smell or could experience “excessive or abnormal” clutch-pedal travel; either could be a sign that the clutch is about to fail. There have been no accidents and one minor injury related to the problem, according to the NHTSA report. FCA will start notifying owners on April 22; in the meantime, owners can check the NHTSA recall website to see if their vehicle could be included. We’ll of course have that link for you in the show notes for this episode at Jeeptalkshow.com   https://www.nhtsa.gov/recalls

Top 5

Top 5 Jeep Questions Jeep Newbies ask

  1. How big of a tire can I fit on my Jeep without a lift.
  2. Should I do a suspension or body lift on my Cherokee
  3. Why do I need a winch? I’ll never get stuck!
  4. What is the best lift for a smooth ride?

And the number one question Jeep Newbies Ask

  1. How can I improve my gas mileage?

Jeep Life:

In 3 days Neil and I will be heading south for Kingman Arizona for some wheeling. However a wintery mix is in the forecast. Then we will head to Mojave Road in California for our LTWK Fan ride. We have been frantically working on a YJ Build to take with us. Neil has a goal to get me to drive each different Jeep.  We found it neglected in a field, bought it and began bringing her back to life. Her name is Jersey Girl After Neils dog who we lost in January. She was with us on the last journey and will be in spirit on this one. We fixed the shackle hack job and did a SOA Springs Over Axle. The previous owner had them under the axle and some home-made shackles. Along with a homemade bumper which took Neil 3 hours of grinding to get off.  A Big Shout out to Extreme Terrain for sending us a front and rear bumper. We will be using the Barricade bumpers just like on my Jeep. I really like them a lot and with the magic dirt here in Colorado I’m hoping for rust free bumpers in the future. They are really solid bumpers and look great. Plus they are super easy to install. We also added beefed up steering with a ⅞ Heim kit. Was really cool to learn about the Heim joints. Tony and Josh did you know the Heim joint is a spherical rod and doesn’t need greased because it’s wrapped in teflon and you get a bigger range of motion. One thing Neil gets on me about  using the correct nomenclature. I tend to call things in my own way. Like the Heim joint is the sliver ball that swivels. I call a wire cutter clippies. And the lady finger the little people cane. It’s really learning about all the different Jeeps and different mods. However I am looking forward to getting away from wrenching and the garage life. It’s exhausting going back and forth to the auto stores especially when they get things wrong or ask you 50 gazillion questions just to get a belt. After Mojave Road we will be heading to Moab. We were thinking of swinging by the Rubicon Trail but I reached out to Steve 4.3lxj and he said if we wanted to do some deep snow wheeling go ahead. If not wait til summer. So it will be Moab for a couple of weeks. I was looking forward to hanging out with my son Ben but it looks like the mass hysteria will be preventing that.

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

Over the years of this show we’ve focused on the suspension of Jeeps in one facet or another many times over. From modifications and upgrades, to things to watch out for, the “oh while you’re in there’s”, and of course what the stuff is called and how it all works. This week, we’re going to start to take a look at the kinds of suspensions found under all kinds of Jeeps and compare them. This isn’t going to be a matter of what is best, more a matter of what’s out there, and how does it compare to your own Jeeps suspension. Overall there’s really only a handful of suspension types that one can put under a Jeep, but they all have their own characteristics, and we’ll get into each a bit as we go through the list. I figure we’ll start with where it all started,….  the first type of suspension that could be found under the earliest of Jeeps dating back to the era of the MB’s and Willy’s. We’re of course talking about the leaf spring. Use of the leaf spring on a wheeled vehicle can date clear back to medieval times. Back then of course a vehicle had wooden wheels, the leafs were referred to as carriage springs and if you had seven slots up front, that meant your horse needed some serious dental work. The use of this style of spring continued all the way up through all years of the Mb’s through the CJ’s, into every year of the YJ’s and into the early 2000’s on some Jeeps. Leaf springs are even in use still today on other vehicles from small pickup trucks to giant cement trucks. Leaf springs are pretty tough, and can usually handle more weight than a traditional coil spring. Over the years, automakers (including Jeep) slowly phased out the leaf springs by switching the front suspension to coil springs, so the vehicles drove and had a ride more like a car. I guess drivers over the years have gotten a lot  less rugged – but don’t get me started on that. Jeep kept the leaf springs in the rear to support heavy loads and retain the utility of the vehicle for many years. You’ll recognize this mixed set up in the older Cherokee XJ’s and Comanche MJ’s. This too eventually went away for a fully coil sprung suspension system. It’s not likely leaf springs will ever go away, but they aren’t used as much as they were in the past, and they’re all but extinct in new Jeeps. Leaf sprung vehicles, including Jeeps will typically ride a little harder, but they will be more stable offroad than a coil sprung Jeep. This is because the footprint of the suspension is spread over a wider area on the vehicle. Although having less components than any other suspension system to work properly, there is also more maintenance that requires more labor. This can range from anything like removing the spring packs from the vehicle to grease between the leafs, or replace a bushing, or to have them re arched, or to replace a leaf, or… well you get the idea. Over the long term leafs can be troublesome but so can any other suspension system too for that matter. In order to lift a leaf sprung Jeep you have several options. The easiest is to add a lift shackle. The shackle is the hinge point on the end of the leaf spring that connects to the frame and allows for the changes in length a leaf spring goes through as it articulates. Lift shackles are longer, thus providing the lift compared to shorter OEM shackles. You can also change the leaf pack altogether, this can give you more flexy springs that are softer, and more forgiving offroad as well as giving you the lift you want. You can put in an “add-a-leaf” which essentially changes the arch slightly of the leaf pack, giving you a bit of lift, but usually not much, and even this may decrease over time faster, as it is meant to work with whatever old ass sagging springs you have in there now. Add-a-Leaf’s will also make the ride a little more stiff since you are essentially adding more spring to the spring. The final option is to add a lift block between the bottom of the spring pack, and the top of the axle. This is a very popular option for the big coal rolling bro-dozers out there as it is a very inexpensive way to get a lot of lift. All these options range from the most to the least desired for a number of reasons including safety. Top of the list in that category would be axle wrap, and it is the bastard cousin of death wobble and is the thing that destroys suspensions and drive lines. I could delve deep into the science and geometry behind axle wrap, but we’ll save that for another show. Just know the more space there is between the bottom of your spring and the top of your axle the worse this is going to be. Well…I knew I was going to end up throwing a bunch of tech into your ear holes, so we’re going to make this a multi part series. NEXT week, we get into the most popular suspension system ever put under a Jeep, the coil spring. There’s a lot more to those coils than you think and we’re not done when we finish with THEM so don’t miss the next few shows!

Newbie Nuggets:

Picking a Line

Picking a line is probably one of the most misunderstood statements in jeeping. Now I don’t mean picking the shortest line in the grocery store, I mean how you pick your line when you approach an obstacle. Picking your line can be summed up as “how will you get through the obstacle and which line (or way) is best for you, your ability and your jeep set up? I have mentioned previously that you need to get out and watch others go through an obstacle. This is to “see” how they got through it either with ease or they struggled. Some key things to keep in mind;

 1)  What is your jeep wheel base? – are you two door, four door wide   or narrow. This makes a difference in how your jeep tracks over the obstacle.

2)   What is your jeep width? Most are standard but there will be exceptions – understanding the width is very helpful. What I mean is if you drive through a narrow road with bushes on both sides, can you get through without touching either side? Knowing your spatial boundaries will also help navigate an obstacle.

Tire tracking is so important – do you know how your jeep tracks? There is a great video on Jeep 4-1-1 showing exactly what we are talking about if you want to see it visually. When you turn your front tires the rear will track differently- they will not go in the same line as the fronts. They will track inside the path of the front wheels. It’s geometry. The length of your jeep makes a difference if the tracking is narrow or wide from the front. With longer wheel bases, the rear tires will track farther inside the path of the front. How does this matter in picking a line? If you place your front tires on a rock, as an example, and think “I’m clear so I can turn the front wheels”  you will more than likely slip of the rock with the rear tires. This happens because the rear tires tracked differently and you needed to continue forward until the rear tires are in-line with the front tracks, or as close as possible. Same applies with setting up for the line you pick. Getting through an obstacle takes patience and understanding. It’s all a process of learning. If you are not lined up straight to that obstacle, you will have a difficult time tracking through the obstacle. You will get through; it just may not go as smooth as you had anticipated. First thing I do when I approach an obstacle is see where I want my front tires to go. I also need to be aware of where my rear tires are – for example, if I turned sharply to get to that obstacle I may need, or want, to back up once or twice to  “line up ” my rear tires so that I am in a better position to track correctly. Setting up for a line is basically deciding which way to get up and over the obstacle. Sometimes obstacles will have an easy way or a more difficult way through. For example: the left side might be an easier way while the right side might be “oh hell no”! Most of us with experience want the challenge for the harder route, but being new, or unsure of your ability, you may want to take the easier route. There is no shame in picking the route you want – good or bad, you are learning about your jeep and how it tracks. So try it, you may have to retry and start over, but at least you tried it. Once you pick a line, stay with it. Rule of thumb is to track in that direction until just behind the driver door (B-post) reaches the apex and then make changes in direction. This may not always apply, but it’s a good start. What I mean is don’t make any turns or changes in direction until you have passed the driver door on that obstacle and you are confident where you rear tires are going. Your rear tires most likely will be tracking in the same direction as the fronts. Another thing to keep in mind is to make little or small increments in your movements. Don’t get up on a rock and then decide to turn full-lock and wonder why you slipped off. Little or small increments in the steering will help stay on track. Don’t forget that using a spotter to help you through is another great way to learn and figure out what your jeep does. If you commit to a spotter you MUST stay with them through it all. Don’t use them and once the front tires are clear, decide “I’ve got this” and then your rear tires slip off. The spotter’s job is to be your eyes and help you through. On one run we were helping this guy through obstacles and he did just that – he needed help lining up and once I got his front tires up, he would stick his head out the window, look down at his front tire as he drove and slip off every time. He stopped watching the spotter and got himself stuck every time. If you use a spotter – USE them. We will have a segment on spotting in a future episode. Picking a line is part of the challenge of jeeping. You want to see if the line you picked allowed you to get over the obstacle, or hindered you. Only way to figure this out is to try it! The best teacher is EXPERIENCE.

And now it’s time for Tammy’s first jeep experience… 

Next week we will continue sharing newbie ideas and we need to hear from you. We have heard from the Jeep Talk Show team, now it’s your turn to share. In the meantime you can also view some great videos on our YouTube channel Jeep 4-1-1 (https://www.youtube.com/user/backcountrydriver) with lots of tips, tricks & techniques.

Interview with:

Andrea Ellis from Lone Star Jeep Invasion

The Great state of Texas has so much to offer the Jeep Community. From the piney woods of East Texas, to the rocky terrain of Palo Duro Canyon and Big Bend, to the winding back roads of the Hill Country, and over 300 miles of Beach, jeepers have called every inch of this amazing state home. With so much space, we are hoping to bring the community closer. Vendors and you, the Jeeper, will be the main focus of the Lone Star Jeep Invasion. Come to meet and purchase from many of your favorite merchandisers focusing solely on Jeeps of all varieties. Vendors will have merchandise available for sale and order, not just products for display. Our Team has hosted or participated in many of these events locally and nationally. We have come together to give you a jeep event for Jeepers by Jeepers like no other.


Jeep Weather: 


Howdy Jeeper, Mitch here, today is Friday the 13th of March 2020, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. Apparently someone is playing Jumanji since the beginning of the year, so why not take our Topless weekend this Friday the 13th to some haunted locations? To begin, we start in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at Eastern State Penitentiary. Known for being the first US prison to implement solitary confinement. Visitors today still claim to see apparitions of former prisoners throughout these halls. Philadelphia will be rainy today at 71, tomorrow and Sunday should be cloudy at 55 degrees. How about checking out The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado? Opened in 1909 by Mr. and Mrs. Stanley, these original proprietors never left their hotel. Mrs. Stanley can still be heard playing her piano at night, bags of guests get unpacked, Mr. Stanley appears in pictures, and disembodied laughter of children can be heard through the hotel. It’s no wonder that a single night stay here inspired Stephen King to write The Shining. Estes Park is snowing today at 32 degrees, tomorrow and Sunday should be cloudy at 46ish degrees. Maybe you’re afraid of woods and possible Wendigo attacks, that’s fine. Then this Friday the 13th check out The LaLaurie Mansion in New Orleans, Louisiana. Here in 1834 Police responded to a kitchen fire where they discovered several mutilated bodies of her indentured servants in the attic. A mob heard of her horrors and ran her out of the country to France. Soon, locals started claiming that they were hearing the screams of her victims. Sadly, you can’t tour the mansion, but it is in the French Quarter for you to drive by in your Topless Jeep. All weekend New Orleans will be cloudy but today should be around 78 degrees, tomorrow and Sunday should be 80 degrees. Good luck out there this Friday the 13th weekend. Be safe, avoid black cats, and wash your dang hands! Now, don’t forget to use the #JeepTalkShow on social media, also don’t forget to tag @JeepTalkShow and me, for us to see those Jeeping Topless pictures. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Then find me on Instagram @jeep_out_west or go to JeepTalkShow.com/contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me. I’m Mitch and its always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Links Mentioned in Episode 428: 

Meredith E. and Extreme Terrain – JLU Build:


Must Have: The Original GraBars – $86.00 – Fits all 1997-2006 TJ Wranglers



Episode 427 – Roy Roger’s Ride is for Sale and It Ain’t Trigger

Please visit our sponsors:

When it comes to upgrading the headlights on your Jeep, there are literally hundreds of options out there. Your stock halogens might be fine and dandy when new but over time, their output will weaken which can lead to unsafe driving conditions at night. To educate those looking to upgrade their Wrangler headlights, Extreme Terrain’s Joe Dick recently published his Jeep Wrangler headlights buyer’s guide video. In the video he installs and reviews several headlight upgrade options, weighing their pros and cons while demonstrating their light beam and color temperature output in the controlled environment of XT’s video studios. https://www.extremeterrain.com/wrangler-jeep-headlights.html

This Week In Jeep:

Here’s a Timely Reference

You know I’m always giving Tony a load of grief for his (sometimes) decades old references he makes here on the show. Dropping a name or a title to something from 20 30 or even 40 years ago or more. So i may get a dose of my own medicine for picking this particular story for this week in Jeep. To a gross percentage of you, the name Roy Rogers probably congures mental images of a coke with grenadine and a cherry on top. Although the drink has led a life of infamy since its invention in the 40’s, the namesake TV show was only around for about 6 years. The Roy Rogers show was an American Western TV series that broadcast 100 episodes on NBC for six seasons between December 30, 1951 and June 9, 1957. For those who remember watching the show you may also remember the iconic Jeep that was in many of the episodes. To many it was one of the most memorable characters on the Roy Rogers TV show. It was a TV icon manufactured from good old American steel and named Nellybelle. The Jeep is a 1946 Willys CJ-2A Jeep with some very innovative bodywork. What made this JEep unique was not it’s stubborn nature to refuse to “get up and go”… but it’s body panels that wrapped around the passenger compartment to shoulder level. It was in fact owned by Roy, but was driven in the show by his comic sidekick, Pat Brady  On TV, Pat Brady drove around Mineral City, the setting of the series, sweet talking to Nellybelle as if his verbal compliments could convince the temperamental jeep to get up and go. The name, which was painted on her doors in most episodes, apparently developed out of Pat riding an ornery mule in the earlier movies, and addressing it with phrases like “Whoa, Nelly!” Roy Rogers chose to include a Jeep into the program because he noticed that after WWII, Jeeps were very popular, especially with children. Rogers himself owned a Jeep which he used for hunting, off road cruising and travel to and from his studio. Roy Rogers was one of the most popular actors of his era, known as “The King of Cowboys” … he passed away in 1998 at the age of 87. Today a replica of the “Nellybelle” Jeep is up for sale on eBay. According to the seller, Nellybelle II was built as a promotional vehicle for the program but is identical to the one that appeared on screen. The Jeeps were featured at the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Museum in Branson, Mo., until it closed in 2010. The original was auctioned soon after for more than $116,000, but sold again in 2018 for just $38,400, according to Hagerty. Nellybelle II is currently in Arizona and listed in running condition with 43,500 miles on the odometer and a Buy it Now price of $29,500. If you’re interested, and if it’s still available, the link will be in the show notes for this episode at JeepTalkShow.com  (shout out to Listener Brandon for the topic submission) https://www.ebay.com/itm/264639570113?autorefresh=true

Jeeps are tough, but damn dude, I think you took it a little too far.

We’re just going to file this one under the: “here hold muh beer ” category…. You may have seen the pics make their way across social media. If you’ve seen the pic, you undoubtedly asked, how’d he make it across the street? A young man is recovering in the hospital from injuries he suffered after driving his Jeep off the top of a six-level parking garage in Santa Monica. The man drove off the top level of the public parking structure on 2nd Street near Colorado Avenue shortly after midnight, the Santa Monica Police Department said in a news release. Officers arrived to find his Jeep smashed, but upright and up against a McDonald’s restaurant across the street. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never craved Mickey-D’s so much I would jump my Jeep from six stories up to get to the drive-thru across the street. Two passengers inside the Jeep were able to jump out before it went off the roof, the Santa Monica Fire Department said. The driver, a 20-year-old man from Twentynine Palms, was actually conscious and speaking with officers when they arrived, police said. Firefighters extricated him from the wreckage and took him to a local trauma center, where he was listed in critical condition, the Fire Department said. Police are still investigating what caused the crash. Because the man was receiving medical treatment, investigators weren’t yet able to determine whether drugs or alcohol played a role, police said. The top of the parking garage, The Jeep, AND the McDonald’s all sustained significant damage, the Fire Department said. A representative from Santa Monica Building & Safety was called to the scene to assess the garage’s structural integrity because the damage was so severe to the upper level. Whatever the reason, this Jeeper decided that it might be a good idea to try and Jump his Jeep like they do in Dukes of Hazzard. I don’t care where you are, it’s just a bad idea. Jeeps aren’t meant to be jumped without a significant amount of reinforcement and weight redistribution. What you see the dune buggy’s do and what they show on TV doesn’t depict what it’s like in real life. So if jumping your Wrangler is on your To-Do list, maybe think about buying a junker to try it out on first.  And for god’s sake, don’t do it off the top level of a parking garage, and if nothing else, make sure you have the right safety equipment so you don’t crush your spine.

Wrangler Talk:

Dana 35 Comparison.

Hello JTS listener and welcome to this week’s wrangler talk. So, on this week’s wrangler talk we’re going to be covering a question that I got from one of the listeners over this past week and the question is what are my thoughts about a Dana 35 axle. So the question also follows with the gentleman stating that he will only be running a max tires size of 31 inches with a simple trutrac locker. You may know that I can’t really talk too much about this kind of question because I built a Dana 30 to handle 37-inch tires. So, Dana 35 axle is kind of a little brother to a Dana 44 and you know a Dana 44 is kind of the midline axle, that everyone runs in their jeep no matter what. I can say the Dana 35 is a decent axle, although there are some cons to the Dana 35 axle and those cons kind of come to play when we are looking at some of the specifications of the axle itself. The differences between a Dana 35 axle and the dana 44 axle can be very important to a decision you will be making in the near future. So first the ring gear, on a dana 35 axle the ring gear measures 7.62 inches compared to the Dana 44 which measures 8.5 inches and this actually means a lot in the automotive world. When it comes to the ring gear itself this means that there are going to be a different number of teeth on the ring gear and the thickness of the gear tooth will change too. So, if we have a thicker tooth size, that means that there will be more meat to withstand the amount of abuse that it’s going to take when off-roading. Secondly when comparing the Dana 35 to the Dana 44 there is a difference in the spline count. Which Splines are the grooves on the axles shaft that interact with our differential carrier.  So the Dana 35 has a spline count of 27 and the Dana 44 has a spline count of 30 which can translate to a big difference in the amount of torque that the axle shafts can absorb and continue spinning the wheels in an off-road condition. Next is the axle tube diameter, they differ a lot from the dana 35 to the dana 44. So the dana 35 has a tube diameter of 2.6 inches where the dana 44 measures 3.5 inches thick. Finally, it all comes down to the axle shaft itself. The axles shaft diameter for the Dana 35 is 1.18 inches thick where the dana 44 ish 1.31 inches this. So, there are a lot of factors to consider and how much wheeling you are going to be doing, also how hard you are going to push your jeep wrangler. Personally, I would go with a dana 44 swap although I do also understand not everyone has the cash to complete such a project so a built Dana 35 could work. Thank you listening to this week’s wrangler talk and remember do you have any question or comments about the show head over to jeeptalkshow.com/contact and we would be happy you out with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have, and talk you next week on the wrangler talk.Hello JTS listener and welcome to this week’s wrangler talk. So, on this week’s wrangler talk we’re going to be covering a question that I got from one of the listeners over this past week and the question is what are my thoughts about a Dana 35 axle. So the question also follows with the gentleman stating that he will only be running a max tires size of 31 inches with a simple trutrac locker. You may know that I can’t really talk too much about this kind of question because I built a Dana 30 to handle 37-inch tires. So, Dana 35 axle is kind of a little brother to a Dana 44 and you know a Dana 44 is kind of the midline axle, that everyone runs in their jeep no matter what. I can say the Dana 35 is a decent axle, although there are some cons to the Dana 35 axle and those cons kind of come to play when we are looking at some of the specifications of the axle itself. The differences between a Dana 35 axle and the dana 44 axle can be very important to a decision you will be making in the near future. So first the ring gear, on a dana 35 axle the ring gear measures 7.62 inches compared to the Dana 44 which measures 8.5 inches and this actually means a lot in the automotive world. When it comes to the ring gear itself this means that there are going to be a different number of teeth on the ring gear and the thickness of the gear tooth will change too. So, if we have a thicker tooth size, that means that there will be more meat to withstand the amount of abuse that it’s going to take when off-roading. Secondly when comparing the Dana 35 to the Dana 44 there is a difference in the spline count. Which Splines are the grooves on the axles shaft that interact with our differential carrier.  So the Dana 35 has a spline count of 27 and the Dana 44 has a spline count of 30 which can translate to a big difference in the amount of torque that the axle shafts can absorb and continue spinning the wheels in an off-road condition. Next is the axle tube diameter, they differ a lot from the dana 35 to the dana 44. So the dana 35 has a tube diameter of 2.6 inches where the dana 44 measures 3.5 inches thick. Finally, it all comes down to the axle shaft itself. The axles shaft diameter for the Dana 35 is 1.18 inches thick where the dana 44 ish 1.31 inches this. So, there are a lot of factors to consider and how much wheeling you are going to be doing, also how hard you are going to push your jeep wrangler. Personally, I would go with a dana 44 swap although I do also understand not everyone has the cash to complete such a project so a built Dana 35 could work. Thank you listening to this week’s wrangler talk and remember do you have any question or comments about the show head over to jeeptalkshow.com/contact and we would be happy you out with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have, and talk you next week on the wrangler talk.

Jeep Life:

Living Simple

Back in 2013 when I first bought my Jeep, I was going through a life change. I was a stay at home mom and my kids didn’t need my attention as much. When I first became a mom I gave 159% of my attention to my kids. I neglected myself which was a mistake, but I can’t go back,so I learned from my mistake not to neglect my needs…so as they grew older I found myself struggling to find myself again. What did I like? who was I? and what was my passion?  As I began self reflection, I discovered a long lost love, my passion from when I was a kid, writing and photography and the outdoors. With the purchase of my Jeep I discovered a new passion for off roading and overlanding. During this self reflection I also discovered the joy of living simply. Living Simple also became a way to live stress free for me and free up time to do the things I enjoyed. While I was on my adventure last fall I realized how easy it was to live even more simply than I had been. Now I am truly living simply. I live in a 6 foot by 10 foot slide in camper. I left most of my possessions back in Maryland so my kids can maintain the home they grew up in. I actually don’t miss the house. I miss my kids, but not the stuff. I have one pot, one pan, two towels, two sheets, one comforter, my clothes, 4 plates and 4 sets of silverware. I certainly don’t have the chores I used to have. I am learning I can live with less and still enjoy life. There are still struggles but it has nothing to do with needing stuff. In my opinion I believe our society is obsessed with stuff. We have to make money to buy more stuff. It’s a vicious circle. Even Jeep stuff. I have been getting rid of it. Do I really need Rubi rails and rock sliders? No… Do I really need shelves when I have nothing to put on them? It’s really actually freeing not to have so much stuff. Even with the little I brought with me I’m still reducing my stuff! To me Jeep Life means enjoying my time and doing the things I love, experiencing life not living in a box, driving a box to go to work in a box so I can buy boxes of stuff.

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

To Sleeve or To Truss…that is the question. 

In fact the question of “how do I make my axle stronger without breaking the bank” is one that gets asked quite a bit in the JEep world. And for good reason, strengthening your axle can improve your Jeeps capabilities, making it stronger, able to run larger tires, and giving you a little more confidence when in precarious positions. We’d all love to be rocking dana 60’s but most of us don’t have the budget let alone fabrication skills to get axles like that under our Jeep. So what’s the next best option? Why making what you have as strong as possible of course. A lot of what you do to increase your axles strength comes down to two main factors.; how hard do you wheel, and what’s your budget? If you’re running 35’s or even 37’s but you don’t ever wheel hard, then your choices may be different than someone who is only on 33’s but wheels the snot out of their Jeep in deep rocks all the time. Obviously the needs of these two are different enough to warrant different approaches to beefing up the front axle. A Jeeps front axle is relatively strong by itself, and does well for what most Jeeps will encounter while engaging in moderate offroading. Once we get into larger tires, more extreme offroading or rock crawling, then the forces on the axle exceed what the engineers had intended it to see. So which is better sleeving or trussing. Actually, they do two different things, and that’s where a lot of people get confused. There are many reasons an axle shaft will break, but excessive radial torque, and hyperflexion are the two main causes. Too much torque from the engine on an axle shaft connected to a wheel and tire that are completely bound up will oftentimes result in a broken u-joint or shaft. Hyperflexion comes when the axle tube bends or deflects more than the shaft can resist and BAM, broken shaft. The best thing to guard against radial torque is to strengthen your shafts through cryogenic treatment, or by swapping them out for chromoly shafts. But we’re here to address all that flex the axle housing sees, and there;s more going on there than you realize. Axle sleeves are basically precision tubes of steel with specific measurements to precisely fit inside the axle tubes of your Jeep. They usually have such a tight fit that they need to be pounded in by a hammer. Often times these tubes require you to drill holes into and thru your existing axle tubes to weld them in place further increasing their added strength. However, sleeves are only good for about a 20% reduction in overall axle flex. What they do a great job of is almost completely eliminating the possibility of a crushed axle tube. It can happen, come down too hard on a rock just right in the wrong spot and all kinds of bad things can happen with that much of the JEeps weight coming down on one area. Sleeves also keep the center of gravity low on your Jeep by adding unsprung weight down low, further preventing your chances of a rollover by a few percentage points. Sleeve kits are relatively cheap too, with price points starting at under $100. Trusses however, are where the serious strength comes in. Where sleeves are an internal reinforcement, an axle truss is an external reinforcement for the axle housing. Trusses almost always require welding to be installed right. In fact I don’t even know of a bolt on axle truss, and even if there was one, i wouldn’t run that to save my life. Honestly for the money, you just can’t beat the added strength of a truss. Providing anywhere from 100 to 300 percent in added strength, axle truss kits can run anywhere from around $100 to over $300 in some cases. Some truss kits are only a couple pieces of bent steel specifically designed for specific axles. Others are more universal, and still others maybe 20 or 30 pieces that all fit together like some sort of twisted jigsaw puzzle. Regardless of the truss, it’s going to need to be welded in by a professional, or at least someone who knows what they’re doing. You’re putting two different kinds of metal together, cast, and forged, and the temperatures required to do this right without bending the crap out of your axle take a skill set many don’t have. The good thing is that if it’s done right, you get unparalleled strength of your axle for a fraction of the price of a full axle swap. And did i mention that sleeving or trussing can be done to either or both of your Jeeps axles? Many companies offer both front and rear truss kits to give that matched look. There is one other area that many people neglect when it comes to strengthening your front axle, and that’s the C’s. The “c’s” of a front axle are the ends of the axle tube where it flanges out to a large “C” shape. This is where the ball joints get installed and what the knuckles mount to. The C’s will flex just as much as the entire axle tube itself, and is a common weak point for most Dana 30 and Dana 44 front axles. The good news is that a small pice of steel called a gusset can be welded across the open part of C’s dramatically increasing their strength and resilience to flex. So how many places do you think you have to go to get all this stuff? There’s more good news here. This is an area of the aftermarket with a lot of demand so there are several reputable places to get what you need. Obviously the builder sites like  Ruffstuff and Ballistic Fabrication will have the bare essentials. But companies like Extreme Terrain, Quadratec, 4Wheel Parts and others have put together kits that offer things like sleeves and gussets all in one package. Synergy Manufacturing has what they affectionately call their “Front Axle Assurance Kit” … which comes with axle sleeves, inner-C-gussets, and even lower control arm skid plates too! As far as other places to source things like trusses, just hop online and start searching. You may get a little overwhelmed at first, but we can always help guide you. Some of the big players in the axle truss word are Artec Industries / JCR Offroad / TNT Customs / Rough Country / Rusty’s. In the end, go with what fits your budget, your build, and your wheeling style. There’s never anything wrong with overbuilding your Jeep, but there;s no sense in going broke doing it if you can get similar results in other ways.  I hope this helps, and if you end up beefing up one or both of your axles using any if these methods, be sure to let us know what you’ve done and what you think about it.

Newbie Nuggets

This week we are discussing “How to get out on the trail”.  How do you find the trails when you are starting out? You got your new jeep and unless you know where the trails are, how do you find them? When we started we had no idea the names of the trails, or clubs, or events to search for. I spent hours on google trying to find the right words to use in searches just to find events. My husband Bill had enough off-road experience to know we couldn’t do extreme off-roading without a buddy and we really didn’t know anyone that was out blazing the trail. There isn’t one list of ALL the events in the country – that would be awesome, but it doesn’t exist that I am aware of. I know a lot of people like to “blaze” their own trail and not follow any roads, but there are reasons to stay on a designated trail – which I will cover in a future episode. But for now, here is a list of suggestions on how to get out on the trail;

 1)  Go with a buddy that knows an area. Use their knowledge to learn trials, routes etc. This is the easiest and quickest way to learn about trails, BUT one day you may want to venture outside your comfort zone and try new areas.

2)  Forest maps/Trail maps – Pick up local OHV and Trail maps for your area. Our forestry department has maps of designated trails that include color coded difficulty levels.  BTW Maps should be on board at all times – add it to your jeep gear.

3)  Google local events. Use search words like “jeep event” or “off-road event” or use your city or area like “Big Bear jeep” and see what comes up. This should give you some leads to follow. Our first event we attended was sponsored by an off-road group (Cal4wheel). They work to keep and preserve the desert trails around here. I found this event because a local jeep club I found in my search was attending and helping. This event had multiple trails to choose from based on our jeep set up – and back then we were so brand new we had to ask what the trail designations 1-5 meant. Hey, that’s how you learn. Everyone was helpful we ended up on a medium (3)  trail and we were hooked!

4)  Look up event organizers in your area, like CORVA (Calif Off-Road Vehicle Assoc. https://corva.org) for us in California is huge. They work to keep our trails open to off-roading. Their events can be 1 or 2 days and you can choose the trail you want to try based on your jeep set-up and experience. NOTE: these “events” will have a checklist of basic equipment that you need in order to participate – check out episode 426 for my basic list that will get you started.

5)  Look up jeep clubs – search using your city and “jeep clubs”, or “4×4 clubs”. Most clubs have some requirements to join but it’s only to make sure the members actually get out on trails and use their jeeps. NOTE: most of the clubs allow non-members to join on runs – that’s how they can get new members. Early on we met with a club out of our area and got to do a very difficult trail (at that time) that today is a regular trail for us. We got experience with others sharing their knowledge. Clubs do offer valuable resources and information and we will be discussing it in a future episode.

6)  Look for out–of-state for runs. This might include a camping trip with your jeep (or camper, or hotel) but it could be an option if your area doesn’t have great trails. Living here in Big Bear we are so fortunate to have destination trails we don’t need to go anywhere else, however, we do find ourselves exploring other areas off the mountain and it offers a change in scenery and obstacles too.

7)  Rent a Jeep – If you don’t have your jeep yet, but you want to get out on the trails, you can rent a jeep. Some cities may have jeep rentals like we do in Big Bear with the Jeep Experience (https://bigbearjeepexperience.com). You get to drive a jeep following a guide. It’s a great way to learn about the trails, the area and you get to explore while driving so when you get your jeep, you know where to go.

Hope we gave you some suggestions on how to find trails and get out and explore this beautiful country. And now it’s time for Josh’s first jeep experience…  Next week we will continue sharing newbie ideas and we will hear Tammy’s first jeep experience. You can also view some great videos on our YouTube channel Jeep 4-1-1 (https://www.youtube.com/user/backcountrydriver) with lots of tips, tricks & techniques.

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

L.T. Wright Handcrafted Knives

I remember back when we had L.T. Wright handcrafted Knives as a sponsor. I told Tony and Josh I didn’t get the fascination with knives. And why was a knife company advertising on a Jeep Podcast. Well Last fall I finally realized the importance of a good quality knife and the connection with Jeep. I always thought Isn’t a knife just a knife and why is it so important? During our adventure last fall, Neil and I had the opportunity to test out knives from L.T. Wright Handcrafted Knives. Neil was really excited to be working with them, but I never understood people’s fascination with knives. That all changed after that month long journey. Neil and I were each given a personal knife. Neil picked the Bushcrafter, and myself the Camp Muck. Wow, using this knife totally changed my outlook on a good quality knife. I don’t leave home without my knife now. Mainly because I’m afraid of being attacked by some wild animal here in Colorado. Ha just kidding. I never realized how handy the knife comes in. I used to carry a pocketknife in my glovebox. Not a very safe knife to be using because it’s not very sharp and the blade is not solid. And it could fold back on you if you don’t use it right.

Jeep Weather:


Howdy Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the 6th of March 2020, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. Alright listener, I was searching for places to go topless this weekend. Then I remembered that tonight is the SpaceX Falcon 9 Commercial Resupply Service-20 (CRS-20) launch to the International Space Station (ISS) from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on their SLC-40 pad. So, this week’s Jeep weather will go to important space ground sites. This weekend, especially tonight, go topless and watch the launch. Cape Canaveral, Florida will be mostly cloudy with 70 today, 62 tomorrow, and 71 on Sunday. Another popular launch site is Vandenberg Air Force Base, California. Just outside the coast town of Lompoc, with plenty of opportunities to go topless and cruise in comfortable temperatures. Today will be cloudy and 58, tomorrow will be maybe rainy and 58, and Sunday will be 60 with clouds. Next, is the first ever, purpose built commercial spaceport. Out near Truth and Consequences, New Mexico and the U.S. Army’s White Sands Missile Range is Spaceport America. Out there will be some good topless Jeeping weather. Today will be 66, tomorrow 73, and Sunday some rain at 64 degrees. Lastly, lets take that top off and Jeep around the NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. Getting cloudier through the weekend with today being 71, tomorrow 64, and Sunday 72 degrees. Don’t forget to use the #JeepTalkShow on social media, also don’t forget to tag @JeepTalkShow and me, for us to see those Jeeping Topless pictures. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Then find me on Instagram @jeep_out_west or go to JeepTalkShow.com/contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me. I’m Mitch and its always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where:

Reno Off Road Motorsports Expo
Fri, Mar 27 – Sun, Mar 29
Reno-Sparks Convention Center, Reno, NV
More Info: http://www.lockettshows.com/off-road-and-motorsports-expo https://www.facebook.com/RenoOffRoadandMotorsportsExpo/

Easter Jeep Safari
April 11th – 19th
Moab, Ut.
More Info: https://www.rr4w.com/

Links Mentioned in Episode 427:

Episode 426 – Dan Grec New Book, The Road Chose Me Vol 2

This Week In Jeep:

The 10 Things We KNOW about the Jeep Wagoneer/Grand Wagoneer

The Jeep world is on fire right now over the upcoming release of the Wagonner and Grand Wagoneer models whose name can be traced clear back to 1963, but the story really begins back in 1946 with the Willys Jeep Station Wagon. Flash forward to 1991 the end of the production run for the full sized Jeep. Having lasted for a total of 29 model years, the Jeep Wagoneer is one of the longest produced vehicles in automotive history. So it’s a good move for Jeep and FCA to take their time with this release. There’s a lot of history here with this name badge so it makes sense that they’re wanting to do it justice. With that said, here are the 10 things we know for certain about the first Jeeps of a new generation.  

  1. It Will Be A Body On Frame SUV

This is arguably one of the most important aspects of the new models. If Jeep is going to make a luxury vehicle it had still better be a Jeep underneath.  Some of the nicknames floating around the industry right now for these new Jeeps is “Soft-Roader” …instead of “Off Roader”. Clever, but I’m not laughing. Jeep is very well aware that if they try to release a new vehicle that can’t go offroad, its going to be a colossal flop. So the engineers focused on a platform that is supposedly going to have serious off road capabilities, and a tow rating that will have many scrambling for a bigger boat or trailer. Initial speculation was that the Wagoneer would use the Ram 1500 half-ton pickup platform, and, in April 2019, spy photos showed up of a Wagoneer test mule that still had the 1500’s truck bed on the back. If that isn’t a clear indication that the Wagoneer will be the sizable body-on-frame vehicle Jeep fans are expecting i don’t know what is.

  1. It Will Be A Three-Row SUV

This we’ve pretty much known from the start. So no new news there. The real trick is going to be whether or not the interior designers left enough leg room in the third row for this to be a comfortable long hauler. Imagine hauling a trailer with a couple JEeps on it, and having 6 or 7 of your closest friends along for the ride. 

  1. The Grand Wagoneer Name Will Also Be Revived

This too was pretty much part of every announcement from the beginning, and there’s been no doubt that there will be two nameplates resurrected for the new series of luxury Jeeps. What’s not clear yet is if the Grand Wagoneer will be the elevated flagship model and compete in the luxury segment with vehicles like the Cadillac Escalade and GMC Yukon. 

  1. It Will Have An Independent Rear Suspension

Although this may not sit well with most die hard Jeep fans, this again is more or less to directly compete with the same technology other automakers are using in the large SUV segment. Jeep will be using it on these vehicles to improve the ride and handling. The more compact design also enhances interior space, particularly in the cargo area and third row, making it essential to compete in the modern premium and luxury market.

  1. There Will Be A Hybrid Model

Jeep has been regularly announcing its plans to electrify their entire lineup by 2024, so this comes as no surprise. FCA’s recent acquisition of the PSA Autogroup falls in line with their desire to soon become a leader in electrified vehicles. The PSA autogroup is way ahead of the pack in this technology and more importantly, has the manufacturing chops to get it done at the scale FCA needs for the Jeep lines. Most likely what we will see for the Wagoner lines is a variant of the 48-volt hybrid systems that go with Ram’s eTorque 3.6-liter V6 and 5.7-liter V8 engine options. 

  1. It Will Have Trims Similar To The Grand Cherokee

You know Jeep and their trim levels. So this too comes as no surprise that the Wagoneer will be offered in several trim levels. It will likely start with a more budget-friendly base model, mid-level trims, premium level trims, and off-road trim levels.  There’s likely going to be a high-level off-road trim featuring the four-corner air suspension setup on the Ram 1500 Rebel model at some point as well.  Now if a Trailhawk package shows up, it’ll probably be later in the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer’s life-cycle. MY educated guess is we won’t see that for at least the first two model years. And I don’t know about you, but I expect rumors of FCA’s Hellcat engine going in one of them to start any day now as well. Can you say  Trackhawk Grand Wagoneer boys and girls?  

  1. Buyers Will Have Plenty Of Engine Choices

As well as the electrified power-trains, the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 is an all but certain option, but it has also been suggested for a while that the Wagoneer will have the 6.4-liter HEMI V8 from Ram’s heavy-duty models as an option as well. That would give the Wagoneer 429 lb-ft of torque along with 410 horsepower using the RAM 2500 variant.  Nothing has been said about the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 engine, but we do know that power distribution will be taken care of by ZF-sourced 8-speed automatic transmissions.

  1. It Will Have A Host Of Modern Features

Don’t get me started. Seriously though, FCA is going to throw the kitchen sink at this thing, so be prepared for a tirate or two from your truly about the extensive driver assistant tech that they’re going to be cramming this thing to the gills with..

  1. Fresh Styling

There is more in this department that we don’t know than what we do know. Jeep and FCA have played this one very close to the vest, and even the test mules that have been seen by spy photographers, have been decked out in extreme camouflage. What we know is that there will be a 7 slot grille, and the test mules have been seen with cherokee style lighting up front, but will likely get their own variant. All we have to go off of are the concept images and fan art combined with our own imagination, so styling sues are anyone’s guess at this point. 

  1. Production Will Start in 2021

Recently, FCA confirmed production would take place at its Warren Truck assembly plant in Michigan. FCA has confirmed it would be investing in the plant and that production would start in early 2021. That means we can expect a pre-production debut at the end of this year and the first model year to be designated as 2021 in the US. It has been a long wait, but we finally know the new Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer are coming for certain, and when.

Wrangler Talk:

Steering Stabilizers, and what they do for us and our Jeeps. 

Hello JTS listeners and boy do I have a treat for you this week on the Wrangler talk but first I just want to remind everyone when you are done working on electrical components on your jeep remember to reconnect the battery and make sure all the fuses are back in their proper location. Let me tell you it makes starting the jeep back up after mods a lot easier. Well now on to this week’s topic and that is steering stabilizers, what do they do for us and our jeep and are they necessary. So first let’s cover what is a steering stabilizer and how do they work. A steering stabilizer is a shock absorber that is mounted on your steering components to dampen or stabilize the side to side movement of the wheels when driving down the road or Off-road. So how does it dampen the steering components? Well a steering stabilizer is designed just like the shocks that are mounted right next to your springs. They are filled with gas or hydraulic fluid and have a valving system inside of them to reduce the harshness of road vibrations. On our steering systems the Steering stabilizer is mounted between the front axle and the tie rod or drag Link. When the stabilizer is mounted between these two components the can absorb the road vibration before the forces are transmitted to the steering box and cause damage to other components in the steering system. The vibrations I am talking about are the nasty pot holes or cracks and stones on the road. Now steering Stabilizers are a necessary component of the steering system because they prevent any bump-steer which the action of is hitting a bump and the vehicle steering in another direction and a flighty steering which is when a steering system wonders when driving down the road. So what are the symptoms of a bad or failing steering stabilizer, well you may notice the steering wheel become loose or wobbly, secondly you may notice hydraulic fluid leaking from the stabilizer itself. You also may notice in my case that you do not have full steering range when trying to maneuver the vehicle. Then finally you may notice the steering wheel shake or flutter at higher speeds also known as death wobble. So what happens when your steering stabilizer goes bad well there are a couple of things that you are going to need to think about and that is what size tires are you running and what size lift. So there are different stabilizers out on the market some that are rated for larger tires and some that are just stock replacement stabilizers so that is something to think about also another thing to think about is when replacing your steering stabilizer do you want to look into a relocations kit where it will flip the steering stabilizer above the front tie rod to ensure you will not damage the stabilizer when you are hard core wheeling with all your buddies. Then you need to stop to remove your stabilizer because it won’t let you turn left. Well this concludes this week’s wrangler talk and remember do you have any questions or comments about the show or just want to say hi. Head over to jeeptalkshow.com/contact and send us an email or leave us a voice message and we would be glad to help you out with any question you may have. 

The Wrangler Came about because of FAKE NEWS!  

Seven Slats – Chris Posit http://sevenslats.com/

Jeep Life:

YJ Flip

We bought a YJ and are fixing it up to flip it. It has a pretty bad hack job. The previous owner welded on a homemade winch plate. That thing was awful to get off. Had to take the whole bumper with it. We are also having to re-do the leaf springs. The shackles are under the axle and are hanging from the front of the bumper. We ordered new shocks, and new shackles, did the regular maintenance items. And probably going to add new 35’s.

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

Quick Trail Repair Tip – Gas Tank Leak

Oh I wish I was a little Bar of Soap! (bar of soap) If you’ve ever stayed in a hotel, then you’re undoubtedly aware of those complimentary prepackaged mini-soaps that are in every hotel room from coast to coast. And I bet you didn’t know they can be an invaluable trail repair tool did you?  You know what will also work for this specific trail repair? Those decorative little seashell soaps in your friends moms guest bathroom. Yeah that’s right mrs McGreeny – I’m the one that took the little blue seashell, and I’ll do it again too! These little mini bars of soap can come in handy for more than just the usual personal hygiene. Slip one or two in your offroad gear bag or even chuck one in the tool box. Trust me, even going to the dollar tree to buy a couple is going to be worth it  just in case this particular issue comes up in your future. So why soap? Bar soap can temporarily plug any non-pressurized hole such as a gas tank. Or possibly even your transfer case or differential housing. It’s soft, pliable enough, and resists oil for long enough to get you down off the trail and back to base camp. Just be advised…soap can melt like any wax will, so the hotter it is, the shorter the lifespan. And in sub zero temperatures, it’s going to be a little harder to work with.  Either way, use it like putty to make a haphazard tank repair. Just don’t try and chew on it to soften it up first. Ok? And if nothing else, you’ll have the freshest smelling tool bag out of the whole group.

Newbie Nuggets:

There’s so much exciting information to cover when trying to inform new Jeepers. Today’s topic is “What Items Should You Carry in your Jeep.” There are literally hundreds of things you can add to your Jeep. Some are more useful than others and some more necessary than others. One of the things I like about Jeeping with others is to check out what gear they have on board. We have collected a lot of gear over the years, but we always seem to see something else we need when looking at someone else’s set up. Not sure why that happens. So, as you start collecting stuff to include in your jeep, I put together a list of BASIC items you may want to consider – it’s just the basics:

1)  Tow Strap – So you can pull your buddy out. Use an actual rated tow strap-not a rope. Ropes will stretch and break. Straps usually have a 20,000 lb. rating. (or higher)
2)  Tow hooks/attachment points – Sometimes known as Recovery D-rings or Shackles. Important if you get stuck and your buddy needs to “latch” on and help pull YOU out. Good ones are also rated. They run about $20
3)  Basic tool kit – good set of tools. This would be at a minimum a couple of screwdrivers, a small set of wrenches, an adjustable wrench, pliers, channel lock pliers, a set of Vise Grip pliers and some work gloves. Put in some duct tape and bailing wire, zip ties and a ratchet tie down strap – you would be surprised how many times we have used these items on others that have broken down. Sometimes you can “mend” just enough to get off the trial.
4)Hi Lift Jack – there may be times your regular jack just won’t cut it. You do need to operate this with care. This tool can inflict some real pain and injury if you are not paying attention.
5)  First Aid Kit – you would be surprised how many bumps and bruises you get climbing in and around obstacles.
6)  Fire Extinguisher – Class ABC stored securely & easily accessible Usually about $30-$50.
7) CB or Ham Radio – We’ve discussed options on previous Episodes, but for the beginner, if money is an issue, a CB could be the interim radio until you decide on the next upgrade.
8)  Trash bag (Trash-A-Roo pouch) – This is essential to any Jeeping experience. Pack out what you brought. DON’T Litter, and take ALL of your trash out with you. In fact, pick up any other trash you see along the trail. The Trash-A-Roo pouch fits on the spare tire on the back of your jeep, so the trash stays out of the jeep. They run about $35-$45. Josh, Tony, or Tammy, what other (1) essential item would you add – keep in mind this is a BASIC list.Keep in mind that these items should be dedicated to the jeep and always be there if needed. Don’t remove them –  it’s always better to be looking at them, than looking for them! And now for Tony’s first jeep experience . Next week we will continue sharing newbie ideas and we will hear Josh’s first time out in his jeep. You can also view some great videos on our YouTube channel Jeep 4 dash 1 dash 1 with tips, tricks & techniques.

Interview with:

Dan Grec – The Road Chose Me Volume Two

After years of working a desk, I realized that life wasn’t making me happy and I needed to make a change. I began dreaming, saving and planning, and finally quit my job and sold all my stuff. Back in 2009 I wound up driving 40,000 miles from Alaska to Argentina, and Ive hopelessly hooked on Overland travel ever since. With little choice I returned to a desk job, and started from nothing to again build a savings account. Years later I quit and sold all my stuff so I could hit the road, this time setting my sights on the entire African continent, aiming to live an even bigger adventureOver the course of three years I drove 54,000 miles through 35 unique African nations as I circumnavigated the entire continent. I knew it would be big, though the adventure turned out to be a thousand times bigger than I ever dreamed possible.

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

Metra 95-6554B Dash Kit – $59.99 shorturl.at/yJRX3 This mounting kit allows you to install a double-DIN (4″ tall) aftermarket stereo in your vehicle’s dash opening. The kit’s painted matte black finish matches your factory dash.  Fits all 1997 – 2001 Jeep Cherokee XJ’s shorturl.at/yJRX3

Jeep Weather: 


Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the 28th of February 2020, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report.  In a quest to find places to get those doors off and go Topless, I found Picayune, Mississippi.  Sunny all weekend with 65 on Friday, 67 on Saturday and 68 on Sunday. Luckily with the humidity being around 70%, it could feel much nicer to drive topless. Next, we go to a place where you can properly get a tan and still be warm. San Antonio, Texas is partly cloudy all weekend 72 on Friday, 73 Saturday, and 79 on Sunday. Maybe running off to a beach will help you get brave enough to go topless this weekend. Let’s check out San Diego, California. Yup, there it will be partly cloudy again, but Friday is 76, Saturday is 69, and Sunday should be 61 but also may rain. Rain will be your clue that Monday is coming, and you need to go home! Last let’s go to Yuma, Arizona. Plenty of off-road trails in the area, warmer weather, and some cloud cover for good topless pictures. Friday 83, Saturday 85, and Sunday 79 degrees. That’s doors off topless weather for you! Don’t forget to use the #JeepTalkShow on social media for us to see those pictures. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com/contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me. I’m Mitch and its always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where

15th annual Tennessee Mountains Jeep Jamboree
April 10-13
Oak Ridge, Tennessee
More Info: https://jeepjamboreeusa.com/
Jeep Jamborees are off-road adventure weekends that bring together the outdoors, down-to-earth people, and their Jeep 4x4s. These off-road treks have a long tradition dating back to 1953 when 4×4 pioneer Mark A. Smith organized the first-ever Jeep Jamboree and voyaged across the Sierra Nevada Mountains by way of the old Rubicon Trail. In 1954, Willys Motors — then manufacturer of Jeep vehicles became involved with the adventure, and Jeep Jamborees have been an off-road tradition ever since.

Mid Florida Jeep Club – Jeep Beach
April 22-28
Daytona, Florida
More Info: https://www.jeepbeach.com/
Jeep Beach is a Jeep only charity event held each April in Daytona Beach, Florida to raise much needed funds for worthwhile local and national charities and organizations. Jeep Beach has become one of the premier Jeep events in the United States. Attracting Jeepers and Jeep industry vendors from all over the USA, Canada, and even overseas, Jeep Beach brings you a week of fun in the sun with thousands of your closest Jeep friends!

Links Mentioned in Episode 426:
Dan Grec – Overlander – “The Road Chose Me” – Part 2 http://theroadchoseme.com/ https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dangrec/the-road-chose-me-vol-2-three-years-and-54k-miles-in-africa

Seven Slats – http://sevenslats.com/


Episode 425 – Selling your Jeep is Bad Mojo!

This Week In Jeep:

Big Congrats To GenRight!

GenRight Off Road today announced that their race vehicle “The Terremoto” (which is Italian for “Earthquake”) has officially been recognized as the first-EVER first full-bodied, street-legal 4-door Jeep Wrangler to finished the 4400 Unlimited Class at the world’s toughest single-day off-road race, the 2020 Nitto King of the Hammers powered by Optima Batteries. The race, which takes place on some of the most brutal terrain in Johnson Valley, CA, consists of three different laps: Lap 1 was 77 miles of desert racing, Lap 2 was 67 miles of desert racing and 11 rock-crawling trails, and Lap 3 was 69 miles of desert racing and 13 rock crawling trails. 105 Top drivers from around the world came to race each other and compete for the title of 2020 King of the Hammers.  You wanna know how tough this race really is? In the 12-year history of this race, less than 1/3 of the participants actually even finish. Yea, it’s like that. GenRight almost wasn’t able to participate in this event. With the build wrapping up last minute, the GenRight Team got the Jeep officially entered just eight weeks prior to the scheduled start of the week-long event. The Terremoto is built from all off-the-shelf parts that either GenRight or its partners manufacture, and any Jeep Wrangler owner can buy right now, today. 

And yes that means even guys like you and me. So if you wanted to, you could literally turn your JKU into a KOH competition ready race vehicle, using all off the shelf parts. That will change the face of off road competition, you mark my words. Now, in this particular race, teams are given just 14-hours to complete all three torturous laps. Owner and Driver Tony Pellegrino and his co-driver Nick Repanich of Chico, California, started 86th and battled their way through the rough desert terrain and rock-crawling trails to finish 32nd out of a total of 145 vehicles that completed the race. The GenRight Off Road-built Jeep Wrangler finished 2.5 hours before the end of the race was called. That alone is what has gained them the title of “first-ever.” But the bragging rights don’t stop there. GenRight’s Jeep also finished ahead of 73 purpose-built 4400 Unlimited Class race cars. (Na-NaNa-Boo-Boo.) I think this finishes any debate about whether or not Jeep is king of the offroad. So let’s get into the good stuff for all the gear heads out there. The 2014 JKU was equipped with GenRight Off Road aluminum bumpers, fenders and rocker guards. And despite the miles of rocks and desert this Jeep faced, the Terremoto’s armor sustained little damage, with the exception of the rocker guards from a trail called Hell to Pay on the final lap. I guess what they say is true… “ya gotta pay to play.”  GenRight Off Road designed and built an all new kit to make a Jeep Wrangler JKU pass the scrutiny of the King Of the Hammers tech inspection, which included additional tubing to the 2” diameter GenRight Off Road Roll Cage, a bladdered fuel cell, and catch cans for fluids in the event of a roll-over. GenRight’s Elite Suspension featuring FOX Shox and Currie Enterprises Axles allowed the suspension to work flawlessly even at speeds of 105 mph across Emerson Dry Lakebed. And when it came time to slow things down and navigate through the insane rock trails such as Bender Alley, Wrecking Ball, Outer Limits, and Chocolate Thunder, the Jeep did what Jeeps do best, and crawled better than most. The entire build list of this Off The Shelf Race Jeep (which I warn you is like reading Jeep porn, and the gallery of high def pics aint bad either) can be found on Genright’s website. We’ll of course have the link in the description of this episode at Jeeptalkshow.com. 


Maybe A Lesson In How NOT To Sell Your Jeep

The owner of the vehicle had parked his 2001 Jeep Wrangler in the parking lot because he was trying to sell it. Something I personally see almost every day. Would be private sellers trying to get as much attention to their vehicle for sale by parking it near an arterial road in a large parking lot.  Heck, maybe even you’ve done this yourself to sell a rig before. Maybe not ever again after hearing what happened next.

The owner, who checked on the vehicle Monday evening, checked on it again as he was driving by Tuesday because he apparently felt something might be wrong with it.

As he pulled into the parking lot, the owner of the Jeep noticed someone had cut a hole in the back plastic window, and as he approached, he allegedly saw someone sleeping inside of it. Police were dispatched to a call of a possible vehicle theft in progress at the parking lot of Lewiston’s now-shuttered K-Mart.  Upon arriving, officers opened the door of the Jeep, and 21 year old Tyrin Taylor was woken up and placed in handcuffs. During a subsequent search of Taylor, police allegedly found rings and other jewelry in his pocket, as well as a baggy of powder that later tested positive for methamphetamine. The owner of the Jeep told police that the CB radio and an amplifier were missing from the vehicle and there was a duffel bag on the front seat that did not belong to the vehicle owner. In the duffel bag, police allegedly found clothing and keys that belonged to the vehicle owner. Police then contacted a burglary victim whose old coins and jewelry had been taken. The burglary victim identified a debit card that was also allegedly found in the duffel bag that belonged to her deceased husband.

The man who vandalized and broke into the Jeep is charged with burglary, criminal possession of a financial transaction card and possession of methamphetamine, all felonies. Taylor was also charged with three misdemeanors: unlawful entry, providing false information to police and malicious injury to property. Nez Perce Magistrate Judge Michelle Evans set bond at $35,000 because of Taylor having three prior felony convictions in Washington in October, including bail jumping. At least for now a criminal like this is off the streets. Hopefully the justice system can make an example of this individual and get them the help they need. And hopefully this will give you something to consider as you make the leap to sell one Jeep to get another. 

I mean at the end of the day, that is the ONLY allowable reason to sell a jeep isn’t it?

Wrangler Talk:

Throttle Controllers, and what they actually do. 

Hello JTS listener and on this week’s wrangler talk I am going to be talking about a very common question that I get whenever someone gets into my jeep Big Red. That question is what is that little white and silver box on your center console. Well everyone that is where I mounted the controller box for my throttle controller. Then that proms another question, well what is a throttle controller? A throttle controller is a small little computer that sits between your pedal and your throttle body. In our newer Fancy jeeps, we have a drive by wire throttle pedal set up meaning that the throttle of our jeep is electronically controlled. However, since the throttle’s position is electronically controlled we can change the signal that is being sent from the pedal to the throttle body. This is done by the function of a throttle controller. A throttle controller can also be called throttle response controller which will help eliminate delays in your electronic accelerator pedal, this is done by having different throttle curves preloaded on a device that can be used when a given signal from the pedal can be modified based on the selected throttle curve giving a sharper response or more relaxed based upon the selected mode. So on my throttle controller I have 5 different modes, and they are ultimate, sport/towing, cruising, Eco, and automatic, which constantly switches between the previous 4 modes. So in each of the modes the throttle curve is different for example in the ultimate mode the throttle curve is much steeper meaning that your throttle body will open to a high percentage with less input from the input signal from the pedal, in the long run just giving you a harder acceleration with less action of the pedal. However it is the opposite for the Eco mode where the throttle body is more gradual to open and takes more movement in the pedal to open the throttle body. Then there is the automatic mode which switches between all the throttle position curves based on the current driving you are doing. Needless to say I don’t use the automatic mode much. So How do I like it. I absolutely love it, it is like diving a completely different vehicle whenever I turn it off and I don’t like it. It makes it so much more fun to drive giving you a bit more control over how your jeep handles. I personally always keep it in cruise mode based on the driving I am doing although if I am in the mood  to get a little more out of the jeep I will put it into ultimate mode which gives a more wide open throttle much faster giving you a bit of a harder acceleration. Then I mostly use the eco mode when I am wheeling because it gives me a smoother control over the pedal when I am bouncing around which prevents wheel spin and other problems. I personally use the Hikeit X9 throttle controller and love it however there are plenty of other throttle controllers out on the market too. Thank you for listening to this week’s wrangler talk and remember if you have questions or comments head over to jeeptalkshow.com/contact and send us an email or leave us a voice mail and we would be happy to help you with any question you may have. Thank you and talk to you next week on the wrangler talk.

Radio Comm Tech:

This is Jon and so far on Radio Comm Tech we have covered CB and GMRS/FRS, today we are going to talk about a couple lesser known options.  MURS, or Multi-Use Radio Service, are handheld radios that operate up to 2 watts on 5 channels in the 151 and 154 MHz frequencies and no license is required. You are allowed to use external antennas with MURS radios so they can be set up to use while mobile. The most common manufacturer of MURS radios seem to be BaofengTech, Motorola, Tera, and Dakota Alert. Some external antennas to consider would be the Laird QWB152, Firestik also has a MURS antenna surprisingly, and the Comet CA-2x4SR ham radio antenna seems to be widebanded enough to have a reasonable SWR on the MURS frequencies. Some businesses may also use MURS frequencies so if you are using it in a metro area you may have moments of brief interference. And for your listening pleasure, Walmart often uses MURS channel 5.
PLMRS, or Private Land Mobile Radio Service also commonly referred to as Business band with the most common operations on 30-50MHz, 150-174MHz, and 450-470MHz. A license is required though there isn’t a test the license can cost about $260, it is good for 10 years, and covers your group/entity/organization. Power output can vary from a 1 watt to hundreds of watts depending on your need and what you are granted by the FCC.  The frequency range is not open for your use, you would be assigned a frequency or a number of frequencies to use. The license does also not cover you anywhere you want to go. The frequencies are coordinated as to not cause interference to other licensed users and your licensed frequencies will only be good for a specific geographical location. This would be best for a dedicated group who frequents the same areas often or who partake in search & rescue or recovery efforts. Another option that is becoming more popular are Race Radios, which Tony touched on recently.  There are companies advertising race radios that operate on off road or race frequencies. There are no dedicated race or off road frequencies. The radios are programmed with business band frequencies used by teams in the baja racing circuit and as I just mentioned would need a business band license. Using these frequencies wherever you want could cause interference to other licensed users, from many businesses, schools, state, county, city, police, fire, and emergency services. That’s all for this go ‘round, stay tuned to the next Radio Comm Tech for info on ham radio.

Jeep Life:

Celebrating the Jeep Life In Colorado – outside Del Norte. Celebrating the Jeep Life is the theme for this year’s adventure with Neil. Besides going to events we want to celebrate your Jeep Story. We have begun by sharing the story about the Jeep Rescue League in Saguache Colorado. A former vet rescuing one vintage Jeep at a time. We also want to share the people behind the company of the aftermarket parts we buy. Sharing The Jeep Life Stories  Schedule of events: Kingman Az. March 17th – 20th Then off to Cali for a “Fan Ride” _@ Mohave Road March 21 – 23 Then to MOAB Ut. For Easter Jeep Safari for hopefully 3 weeks Overland West in Flagstaff Arizona May 15 & 16 Overland Mountain in Loveland CO end of August Overland East In October in Virginia. Planning a East Coast Fan Ride. We hope to be able to do more and would love your support. www.patreon.com/JeepMomma

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

It seems everything has a remote now. Hell I saw a kid point a device at his shoes the other day and lights in the soles changed colors. So if we have remotes for TV’s, Ceiling fans and even tennis hoes. Then why not have a remote for your Jeep’s battery too right? You’ve heard the saying, “we’re living in an age of excess?” …and there’s certainly an excess of technology out there for virtually any and everything in your life. And your Jeeps security is no exception. In episode 423, we went over 5 ways you can disable your Jeep to prevent it from being stolen. One of those ways was to use what is called a “Remote Controlled Car Battery Switch”. Using RF Technology, the device will interrupt the main feed of electricity from your battery to the rest of your Jeep, remotely. As in from the comfort of your own home. No crawling under the Jeep, no opening the hood or breaking out tools. You don’t even have to turn a giant red switch. All you do is press a button on a remote. These things come as a kit giving you everything you need to add this into your own Jeeps electrical system. And it’s not too hard either. Essentially your installing this in-line from the battery to the main fuse block or power distribution center.  Typically installation will require removing the battery terminal cutting the end off, installing a large gauge ring terminal and then hooking that to one side of the device. The kit will have another battery line for you to install from the device to the battery. Then after securing the device to the firewall or other suitable secure mounting point, you’re done. It really is that easy. And for less than 50 bucks and an afternoon worth of work, you can have added peace of mind that your jeep will always be where you last parked it. But this isn’t all about security either. This works great for Jeeps that get stored for the better part of the year. Only coming out on dry or warm days. This saves the Jeeps battery from going dead over those long periods of no use. Granted you may still want to have a battery tender on it just in case, but kiss goodbye the days of removing battery terminals to store your Jeep. And if you think “well how can this work remotely and not suck my battery dryer than a lint ball in a sand storm if it has a remote and is hooked up to my battery all the time mister electrical smarty pants??!” That’s because the device uses a latching relay system and a passive receiver that only activates when the proper signal is sent. So this unit uses zero juice until it’s needed to  operate. If this sounds like something you may want to explore for your own Jeep, buggy or resto mod project, then we’ll have a link for you to get one yourself. One note though: I have grossly oversimplified the installation procedure for this device and it may not be the best thing for every Jeep, meaning there may be other or better solutions for your particular situation. And as always when dealing with the electrical system of any vehicle, be sure to leave it to the professionals if you think it may be outside of your expertise or skill level.  E-KYLIN DC 12V Electromagnetic Solenoid Valve Terminal Master Kill System https://amzn.to/2S4y7ce

Newbie Nuggets:

This week on Newbie Nuggets we will start the process of “where do you start”? The first tip is NEVER go alone. I know you are excited to get out there, but honestly you should travel with another vehicle. That way you can learn from others experience but if you get into trouble, you have help – And that’s important. Wouldn’t want you to get yourself in a particular situation and have no way to get out of it. That would mean a long walk home. So BRING a buddy!!! Second tip: Trails are rated for difficulty from easy to intermediate to difficult. Here in So. Cal the trails have three designations: a green circle if it’s easy, a blue square if it’s an intermediate/medium trail and a Black Diamond for the more difficult and sometimes the most sought after Other areas in the country may use a numbering system of 1 to 5 with 5 being most difficult for their ratings.  Tony and Josh How are the trails in your areas rated? (Tony and Josh respond) If you are brand new to driving, I would suggest easy or intermediate trails your first time out and definitely with another jeep buddy. But don’t get discouraged, if you want to try the Black diamond, go with experienced jeepers and learn. And By the way there is NOTHING wrong if you unsure about your ability or you are not willing to break or scratch your new jeep. Don’t take risks if you are not ready. Third tip: When you and a fellow jeeper, or group, head out, the next thing I would advise is to GET OUT OF THE JEEP! I know, it sounds funny, I have been encouraging you to get IN the driver’s seat and now I’m saying GET OUT OF THE SEAT! When you get to an obstacle the best thing you can do for yourself is get out of the jeep and watch others. Hopefully you get the chance to watch how each of the jeeps picks their lines through the obstacle. It’s such a great learning experience to watch. Now some things to look for – how did the jeep make it through – was it easy, did they struggle, or what exactly happened? How did their rear tires track in relation the front tires? How did their tires grip? Did they air down enough? All things we will be discussing in future episodes. This isn’t just a watch and see moment, it’s a beginning lesson on how and why that jeep took that line, what worked and what didn’t. Driving through your first obstacle is such a thrill the accomplishment you feel is huge.  (?? Tony, how did it make you feel when you were out with us on the Nexxen tire event?) OK now on to my first jeep experience as promised: I had never been in a jeep off-roading before and my image of off road was a dirt road, fairly maintained that you traveled on when you lived in the boonies. So when my husband said “let’s go see what the jeep can do”, I had images of that dirt road and said OK. Well for those of you in So.Cal who know the area, we drove to Cougar Buttes ( that’s Johnson Valley home of the KOH race). It’s full of rocks but not like you saw in Big Bear Tony, these rocks are long, tall and full faced with steep inclines, etc. There are wedges, and off camber stuff that is awesome if you are into crawling. Put this on your list if you haven’t visited Cougar Buttes. So we drove to the first obstacle called Cake Walk – sounded good to me, I like Cake! I got out to watch the first part of the obstacle. The rock face was sheer but it seemed doable. The jeep looked like it was going to “fall off” but of course it didn’t. When we got to the last part of this obstacle, we approached a four foot ledge “V-shaped” rock wall.  Now I have been driving cars since I was 16 and I have been told that ALL four tires should stay on the ground at all times and vehicles DO NOT “crawl” up a rock face. As we got closer to the obstacle my brain started to remind me of the laws of physics…….You would have thought there was a hornets nest that I discovered in the back seat because I SHOT out of that jeep as fast as anyone could. The fear in my brain at that moment convinced me that the jeep was going to fall backwards and land on its top. I was certain that my husband forgot about the laws of physics was completely CRAZY for suggesting this!!!. Seriously, had you been in the jeep behind us you would have seen me shoot out like a cannon ball. I’m sure it was hilarious to watch. Now, of course I watched the jeep perform beautifully and climb up and over the rocks like it’s supposed to and then I climbed up the wall myself like a Billy goat and got back in the jeep. I did breathe a sigh of relief that all was OK. The best part was that it was the first time I got to see what jeeps can do and it really helped change my brain and of course today I don’t have the hornets’ nest in the jeep anymore. Thank goodness. So if you are new to driving, you probably won’t bolt out of your jeep like I did but remember that it’s OK to get out and watch, it’s OK to try new things and it’s OK to learn as you go. We’d love to hear from you. If you have any questions about starting out, or if  you want to share your first jeep experience, head over to Jeeptalkshow.com/contact and tell us all about it. You can also view some great videos on our YouTube channel Jeep 4-1-1 with tips and tricks. Next week we will continue with more Newbie Nuggets and we will hear Tony or Josh’s first jeeping experience.

Interview with:

Keith and his wife, Andrea, have been Jeep Enthusiasts for over 10 years.  While running their business, Jeep ‘n Jewelry, they’ve traveled coast to coast attending Jeep shows and events.   Their love for these shows gave them the idea to start the Lone Star Jeep Invasion. Last year’s event was extremely successful, donating $8500 to local charities and over 1650 pounds of food to the local food shelter.  This year’s event will be even bigger and better. If you’d like more information, you can visit them at lonestarjeepinvasion.com or on Facebook.  https://lonestarjeepinvasion.com/


Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

Valve-Loc Heavy-Duty Tire Valve Stem Covers – Black (10pk) $7.99

Back when I was a paperboy it was every 11 year old kid’s dream to have a set of what we called “chromies” on his bike. Those old school chrome valve stem covers were about as close to coveted “bling” as we got back then. Of course today you can get valve stem covers that strobe in 256 colors as you drive down the street and spell expletives via bluetooth for them basic bitches on the sidewalk to read. And honestly if that’s what you’re after then more power to you, and there really is some flashy stuff you can get for next to nothing. But me? I prefer function over form. Today I’m not delivering papers, and my bike is now a Jeep and if you’ve listened for a while you know my old saying “chrome won’t get you home.” So on my Jeeps wheels I’ve got something less coveted, and more functional than anything. But yea, they look cool too. They come in anodized black or silver, and have a knurled barrel design giving them excellent traction for your fingers, even with gloves on. I’ve been rocking a set of these Black Anodized Valve-Loc Heavy-Duty Tire Valve Stem Covers for the better part of 5 years or more, and it’s because they plain and simply work, and I mean no matter what. The link we’ll have for you will get you a ten pack, that’s enough to do two Jeeps and their spare tires. The reason these things are way better than those plain old plastic caps is two fold. First, They come with an Airtight Rubber O-Ring Seal. This provides an enhanced seal to help prevent air leakage and to properly keep out dust, dirt, grime and road debris. Secondly, they have a Proper Stem Fit instead of a Universal Stem Fit. Valve-Loc offers the best tire valve caps available today because every piece is custom-designed to lock on tight for a firm fit you can trust. And I’ll back that up. Every time I go to air down or air back up, these things are on just as tight as I put them on before. Zero back off, 100% sealage. And that’s even after a whole day in the rocks too! So for less than 8 bucks for two Jeeps worth of something cool? Thats a win win in my book. https://amzn.to/3bRVSfz

Camp Fireside Chat:

Let’s talk tires!  Would you switch tire type?  Would you go A/T or M/T?  What would it take for you to change brand, type, etc..

Jeep Weather:


Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the 21st of February 2020, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. Listener, I have a confession to make. I’m not a fan of basketball and the only football game that I watch of my own choice is the Army-Navy game, GO ARMY! I love baseball, enjoy hockey, IndyCar racing, hunting, fishing, and a few obscure sports (You know, probably playing on the Ocho), to include Highland Games, and Timbersports. So, for this week’s Topless Jeeping weather, I decided to take you to a few big spots for the last two sports. First is Pleasanton, CA, where one of the largest clan gatherings, highland dance, music, and most importantly highland games takes place every Labor Day weekend. Cloudy all weekend and 73 Friday, 65 Saturday, and 63 Sunday. The largest Highland Games of the Northeast US takes place in Lincoln, New Hampshire. Here, like at most games and gatherings, is also lots of whisky tastings. Maybe this’ll help you get brave enough to take that top off. This weekend the weather won’t be too tough to bear through. Mostly sunny with some cloud cover, Friday 26, Saturday 35, and Sunday is 42. Next go to Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, where the Canadian Championship Competition of Timbersports will take place. This weekend Charlottetown will be mostly sunny and 14 on Friday, 31 Saturday, and 36 on Sunday. In the US, one of the major qualifiers for Timbersports takes place in Cherry Valley, New York. Go topless in a mostly sunny weekend, Friday will be 27, Saturday 34, and Sunday a less nippily 42 degrees. Don’t forget to use the #JeepTalkShow on social media for us to see those pictures. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com/contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me.  I’m Mitch and its always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where:

Lone Star Jeep Invasion
March 20th – 21st
Lone Star Convention Center – Conroe, Texas
More Info: https://www.facebook.com/LSjeepinvasion/  https://lonestarjeepinvasion.com/

Badlands Off-Road Adventures – Self-Recovery Clinic or Wilderness First Aid Clinic
arch 28th
Borrego Springs, or Gorman California
More Info: https://www.4x4training.com/w/

Links Mentioned in Episode 425:

E-KYLIN DC 12V Electromagnetic Solenoid Valve Terminal Master Kill System https://amzn.to/2S4y7ce