Episode 414 – Whips, Chains, and Ice. Oh My!

This Week In Jeep: 

More Conformations About Jeeps Future Lineup

Without the outward drama of protests and a strike that marked General Motors’ proposed deal with the union, you may never have known that the UAW-FCA Council gave its blessing Wednesday to a tentative agreement between the union and automaker. Not that FCA was on the verge of a strike, but there has been rumblings that FCA uses a lot more temporary, and transitional workers than it’s rival across the way in detroit does. And it’s been rumored that those workers do not get the same kind of pay and bonus structure as regular plant workers do, and their benefits package is also less. FCA has promised to do more for these workers in the past, but nothing was done. I think this is more of a preemptive move to stave off something like a full strike though. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles workers represented by the United Auto Workers Union would see a boost for temporary workers, improvements in health care for in-progression workers and a bonus that matches what Ford workers get if they ratify a proposed labor contract. Voting begins Friday and is expected to wrap up next Wednesday in an effort to make those bonuses available before Christmas. Fiat Chrysler’s tentative labor agreement with the UAW has also confirmed details about several key Jeep models that are in the works. According to the reports, production of a new three-row Jeep SUV is set to begin in 2020. Jeep hasn’t had a three-row vehicle in its lineup since the Commander was discontinued in 2010, and is currently the only major brand without one. Recent comments made by Fiat Chrysler CEO Mike Manley suggest that the Detroit-built model will essentially be a three-row version of the Grand Cherokee, but will likely wear a different name. And no i’m not talking about the Wagoneer lines here. This will be a whole separate vehicle from those. The full-size Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer will compete against the likes of the Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban and Cadillac Escalade. All that we pretty much already knew. However, the agreement reveals that plug-in hybrid versions will be available starting in 2021. Missing from the agreement is mention of a third three-row model smaller and more carlike than the Grand Cherokee-based one that Jeep previously said would be on sale by 2022, which could mean it will be built outside of the U.S.  All that aside, the big news from all of this is that we got conformation of a rumor we first heard a couple years ago.  What we found out is that Jeep remains on track to introduce the first plug-in hybrid version of the Wrangler next year. THAT’s big news.

Tale of Two Jeeps

It’s been a little while since it’s been brought up, so I’d like to remind you that there is currently a great battle waging… a battle between Mahindra, who is selling their very Jeep-like Roxor off-road-only vehicle, and Jeep, who sells, you know, Jeeps. 

Fiat-Chrysler  alleges that the very Jeep-like Roxor is TOO very Jeep-like to be sold here in America.  While on the face of it, this seems to make sense, but when you dig a bit deeper things just aren’t as clear. Mahindra has had a license to build Jeeps for a hell of a lot longer than FCA has.  THAT’s something that’s been missing from a lot of the “knockoff Jeep” reports you see online. Mahindra isn’t some random company that just decided to start building knockoff Jeeps, they have a heritage and history almost as old as Jeep itself. Mahindra has been licensed to build Jeeps since the Willys era, way back in 1947. They didn’t steal the Jeep design, they’ve actually been building them for over 70 years. The ROXOR was engineered and developed in the U.S. and is based on the same platform as Mahindra’s Thar vehicle that is sold in India and many other markets. Mahindra has been manufacturing the Thar and its predecessors since just after World War II.  The ROXOR’s resemblance to the CJ and military-style Willys jeep is directly related to this 70-year heritage. It’s worth noting that the ROXOR is manufactured in Auburn Hills, Michigan at the first assembly plant to be built in Southeast Michigan in over a quarter of a century. Mahindra has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into building its U.S. operations and currently operates multiple facilities in the Detroit area. It employs more than 400 U.S. employees and hundreds more through its network of over 400 dealers and U.S. suppliers. While I certainly understand FCA’s desire and need to protect their intellectual property, I’m going to risk a bunch of hate mail here and say that I’m more on Mahindra’s side here. Primarily because of the history, but also the fact that they did take credible efforts to differentiate the Roxor’s grill or “face” if you will, and I really just can’t imagine anyone confusing the purchase of an off-road-only Roxor you can only get at a Mahindra dealer with an actual Jeep-branded modern Jeep. I also don’t really understand why none of this was sorted out between the two companies before the Roxor was introduced here, but I’m not some bigshot automaker lawyer, after all. If someone could genuinely get confused about that purchase, maybe they don’t need to be driving at all?

Wrangler Talk: 

Steering Components of our Wrangler

Hello JTS listener, as promised we are diving into the steering system of your Wrangler. In this talk we will cover each component of your steering system and possible failures of each. Well there are a few main components to your jeep’s steering system, and they are your: tie rod, drag link, track bar and steering box. Each component plays a crucial part in controlling the direction of your jeep. First let’s cover your tie rod. Your tie rod is the center shaft that links your two steering knuckles together linking both front tires together. The Tie rod is what controls your toe in and toe out factor when it comes to the alignment of your jeep. The toe of your jeep can cause your jeep to pull in one direction or the other if your tires are toed out in either direction. So, to adjust the tie rod there is normally an adjustment sleeve at one end of the drag link allowing the tires to be toed in or out during the alignment process. Your tie rod also has a ball joint on each side of the tie rod creating the connection point to the steering knuckle. On the Stock tie rod these ball joints are normally not serviceable requiring a new tie rod when they start to wear and go bad. This is the best opportunity to replace the tie rod and make a bit of an upgrade. On the Wrangler 2007 and newer your steering stabilizer is connected to this tie rod. This stabilizer assists in damping the bumps in the road and giving you a smoother feel through the steering wheel when driving on and off road. Now on to the drag link. The drag link connects from your steering box down to your steering knuckle. The drag link is also adjustable. However, the drag link does not control any part of your toe in or out. The adjustment of your drag ling affects the clocking of your steering wheel so if your jeep still drives in a straight line and you steering wheel sitting at about 2 o’clock that means your drag link length needs to be adjusted. Also, as stated on my last talk the drag link also has ball joints on each end of the rod, and same as the tie rod on the stock version the ball joint are not serviceable so once again great opportunity to upgrade your steering components if these ball joints start going bad. Now onto the Steering box and pitman arm. All Jeep Wranglers have a hydraulic assisted power steering box meaning that inside the steering box, there is a series of valves that control the flow of pressurized hydraulic fluid to different cavities of the steering box to help turn the wheels in either direction. Most commonly the steering box does not go bad itself however there is the possibility that the seals with in the steering box may go bad and yes, they are rebuildable. However, unless you are mechanically inclined I do not recommend trying to rebuild the steering box yourself. Yes, I know it will save you a bunch of money and yes there are kit out on the market to rebuild them but unless each seal is perfectly seated within the steering box there will be a failure down the road or immediately when you turn the jeep on and provide pressurized fluid to the box and can cause harm to other components in the steering system like your power steering pump or the lines that provide the fluid to the steering box. Now the pitman arm is what connects your drag link and box shaft together and creating the lateral motion of your steering system. The pitman arm is a crucial part of your steering system and it is very important to make sure your pitman arm nut is properly torqued to the correct specification. A loose pitman arm nut can cause serious play in your steering system and lead to the need of replacing your steering box due to the movement in relation to the steering box output shaft also known as the sector shaft, which is the shaft that comes out of the bottom of the steering box creating the rotation motion need to turn your wheel. We will come back to the pitman arm after I talk about my favorite part of the steering system and that is your track bar. Your track bar is probably the most important part of your steering system and that is because your track bar keeps your axle and wheels centered under your jeep. The track bar consists of two bushings, and a metal shaft. The reason why I say that your track bar is the most important part of your steering system is because when your turn your wheel in either direction the track bar creates the solid brace against your frame linking the frame to your axle. So, you may have heard of an adjustable track bar meaning that one side of the track bar has an adjustment sleeve allowing you to adjust your track bar length allowing you to recenter your axle under your jeep in relation to your frame rails. This is very important in keeping your jeep traveling straight down the road and allowing for the proper alignment of your wheels. Now on to those bushings that are located at either end of your track bar, if these bushings are going bad this is a possible cause of that horrible death wobble. Yes, so check the bushings in your track bar you might have just found why you have any wobble in your steering system. Also, when looking at your steering system your track bar and drag link should be on parallel plains meaning that when looking at the two bars there should be equal distance between the bars when looking at them from the front all the way down from your track bar mount and pitman arm down to your axle. If they are not parallel this could also be another reason why you have death wobble. One way to make these two components parallel is looking into a drop pitman arm or longer pitman arm meaning that there is a greater drop in where your pitman arm connects to the steering box and your drag link. Well that wraps up this wrangler talk and remember check those bushings and your ball joints. You might just find the cause of your steering problem and thank you for listening and remember want to hear about a topic on the wrangler talk in the future send us an email or voice message on our website at jeeptalkshow.com/contact and join us next week where we will be continuing to talk about the steering system of our jeep wranglers

Five Ways to keep ice off your windshield

This may sound funny from a south east Texas boy, but here are the 5 ways to keep ice off your windshield.

  1. The night before freezing temperatures, cut and onion in half and rub it all over your windshield. The sugar from the onion creates a film over the window enhancing the melting of the ice.  You can also use a potato.
  2. Spray your windshield with a mixture of vinegar and alcohol.  If ice does form it should come off easily with a credit card.

  3. Salt changes the freezing temperature of water.  Mix some table salt with hot water to dissolve it.  Be sure and let it cool to room temperature first so you don’t crack your cold windshield. Then just spray it on!

  4. Cover your windshield, duh!  If it’s covered no ice will form, right?  Don’t have a cover, just grab your floor mats!

  5. Park facing the Sun.  If you didn’t know the Sun rises in the East.  If you park your vehicle East mother nature will defrost your windshield for you!  Now how’s that for solar power!

Jeep Life:

Part 2 of Adams Xtreme Off Road Adventure

The West was amazing.  Sedona Red Rocks Broken Arrow. Drove to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. In Peach Springs AZ the capital of the Hualapai Nation. There’s a Natural Resources building where you can get a permit to drive down Diamond Creek Road. $16.27 per person. Amazing views. Kingman Arizona. Damaged my Jeep tried a 112 point turn. Met Rick Swats who stopped BLM from closing trails in the area. Check out my YouTube video to get tips on how to stop them in your neighborhood. Meet the guys at Summit 4×4 in Prescott. Creating a non-profit. Mojave Road. wheeled Gold Mountain in Big Bear Lake California and wheeled Pinion Mountain trail in Anzo-Borrego springs CA. Both Jeep Badge of Honors. What’s next…

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk: 

No Slide Hammer? No Problem.

I learned this trick working on countless front wheel drive vehicles doing brake jobs for my own cars, but also friends and coworkers rides too. And even though this exact method was developed to more easily remove pressed on rotors, it’s a great way to remove a frozen, seized, or otherwise stuck axle shaft out of a dirty or gunked up axle tube. Maybe your axle seals have been leaking for some time and the tubes are just chock full of grime and gunk acting like tar or glue holding that shaft in the tube. Maybe you’re dealing with a junkyard axle, and things are just seized up or rusted in place. Ordinarily, one would turn to the power of a slide hammer to pull that rotor, or yank that shaft out of it’s hole. A lot of people don’t have this tool or even have access to it without driving across town to the one parts store that has this tool for rent. Or maybe you’re out on the trail and who brings a slide hammer with them on a wheeling trip? You can skip all that hassle, and still get the results you want by simply suing a length of chain. I have an old tow chain laying around, and there’s a chance you do too, or know someone who does. It doesn’t have to be a tow chain, it can be any length of chain (at least 6 to 8 feet in length actually) and large enough so that  you can get a bolt thru it to screw one of the links to a rotor, or in the case of a stuck axle shaft, the chain needs to have links large enough for one of the wheel studs to fit through one of the links. Once you have one of the links on the end of the chain over the stud, you’ll use a lug nut to secure it in place. Now, making sure your work area is clear of obstructions, pets, other vehicles and anything made of glass….. And with a little slack in the line, you’ll want to give that chain a big ol yank. The weight of the chain, combined with the forces generated by the action of yanking that chain, create a whip-like effect, multiplying the pulling forces exerted by several factors. The more chain that is loose and on motion is that much more weight and mass moving in the right direction. Too short of a chain, and you won’t be able to generate the forces needed to make things happen. Too long of a chain, and you risk injury or damage to the vehicle. Try it out, and let us know how it worked for you.

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep: (Jeep Momma Product Review:)

Colby Valve

This is a must in your recovery gear! Valve stems break. I can attest to that. When I was wheeling in Kingman AZ mine did. As a matter of fact it’s the second time I’ve done it. The first time was a slow leak. The time in Kingman it popped my bead. Luckily one of the guys wheeling with us had one. He was so excited to finally use it. It was so easy to use. Neil just pulled out the old one and screwed in the new one and bam!   Colby Valve built a better valve stem. It installs from the outside of the wheel in about 1 minute, is 20X stronger than standard valves and made in the USA! They are patent pending Colby Valves are hands down the STRONGEST, MOST CONVENIENT and BEST valves on the planet. They have permanent and emergency valves. As well as short and extra large. They are between $25 & $35 depending on which you get. 

Jeep Weather:

Mitch

Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the sixth of December 2019, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. Yes, Jeep fan, we made it to the last month of this year! Let’s start Going Topless and the weather in Springfield, Arkansas. Cloudy all weekend with 61 on Friday, 55 on Saturday, and 57 on Sunday. Good for those pictures. Next, lets take our tops off and cruise through. Springfield, Kentucky. High chance of rain on Friday at 51, cloudy on Saturday and Sunday with 49 and 54 degrees. No worries about drying off, you’ll be topless anyway.  How about going topless in Springfield, Nebraska! Cloudy all weekend with 39 on Friday, 52s for Saturday and Sunday. Hey, now… I seem to only be looking at Springfields, maybe I should watch The Simpson’s huh? Well then, out of the US and into Canada. Hey, the weather here is my kind of weather! Possible rain on Friday at 39, and cloudy Saturday and Sunday with 32 and 45 degrees. Wait this is Springfield, Ontario! Looks to me, that all these Springfields have similar weather systems affecting them. There you go Jeeper, go Topless in Springfield. Moderate temps with clouds and maybe rain. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash 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:

Off Road Driving 101
December 20th
Rausch Creek Off Road Park – Pine Grove, Pennsylvania
More Info: https://offroad-consulting.com/
https://www.facebook.com/offroadconsulting/

New Year’s Roll and Ride
December 28th
Adventure Off Road Park – Pittsburgh, Tennessee
More Info: http://adventureoffroadpark.com/

Links Mentioned in Episode 414: 

https://offroad-consulting.com/
https://www.facebook.com/offroadconsulting/
http://adventureoffroadpark.com/
https://www.colbyvalve.com/

Episode 413 – Highlands Ranch Shooting Hero Kendrick Castillo Update

Please visit our sponsors:

ExtremeTerrain, This Weeks Jeep Talk show is brought to you by ExtremeTerrain, Wrangler off-road parts and accessories outfitter. Stay tuned to hear about Merideth Evasew’s Jeep Bumpers Buyers Guide video on how to choose the right type of front Bumper for your rig!”

This episode of the Jeep Talk Show is sponsored in part by: Black Magic Brake Products, they build Big Brake Kits for your Jeep!  BlackMagicBrakes.com sells Direct Bolt-In Vanco Big Brake Kits with Black Magic Brake Pads and NEW Steering Knuckles. Find out more by visiting Black Magic Brakes dot com, that’s Black Magic Brakes dot com.

This Week In Jeep:

Spy Pics Of Grand Wagoneer Released

You know we pretty much have our proverbial fingers on the pulse of the JEep world.  So when there;s buzz of spy photos being leaked of what could be the new upcoming Wagonner or Grand Wagoneer, that you are going to be some of the first to hear about it. We’ve actually known for a while that Jeep is bringing back the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer nameplates, and we now have our best look yet at what the proportions are of this new full-size, three-row Jeep SUV. Based on the few photos that were released this week by the camera ninjas at Car & Driver, we can speculate that it’ll be built upon the Ram 1500’s platform going off the sheer size of this thing. It’s unclear what the difference between the Wagoneer and the Grand Wagoneer models will be, but if the rumors are true, then the relationship between the two might be akin to the Tahoe and Suburban, with the Grand Wagoneer serving as a long-wheelbase version of the standard Wagoneer. OR…It may just be a matter of trim level, with the Grand Wagoneer backing up what many are thinking will be a six figure price tag. Either way, the vehicle we see here under heavy camouflage appears to share some styling with the current Jeep Grand Cherokee, as we can see the headlights and taillights beneath the camouflage are similarly shaped to those found on the grand. 

The Grand Cherokee, too, is getting a redesign soon, and it might arrive before the Wagoneer, so what we see now, may just be bolted in place to keep it road legal. Not the first time we’ve seen franken-Jeeps tooling around the test track or in Toledo under heavy blankets. As far as what is going to be powering this new behemoth of a Jeep, well that too can be derived from the platform it’s being built on. Since it shares its frame with the Ram 1500, it is likely the same engine options will follow. That would make the standard engine a 3.6-liter V-6 with the e-Torque hybrid, and those wanting more grunt,  the 5.7-liter V-8 Hemi will be the more powerful option. Both engines will probably be paired with a ZF eight-speed transmission and either rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive options. A rumored all wheel drive option has been thrown around in some circles too. Regardless, one of the big unknowns at this point is whether or not retro wood paneling on the outside of these will be an option too. All we can do is hope. Jeep has said that the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer will begin production in 2021, so we can expect to hear lots more about these new models in the coming months.

Kendrick Castillo Update 

A story we covered in May has some further developments. It’s not often we get stories that choke us up or have us diverting from the funny all that often. But this was one of those stories that not only was hard for me to write, but difficult to read at the time too. You may remember the story of a young enthusiastic Jeeper by the name of Kendrick Castillo. He was the 18yr old boy who in an act of sheer heroism, tackled a would be gunman as he entered Kendricks classroom intent on murder.  Kendricks act of bravery allowed other students to get to safety, and for the gunman to be tackled and detained. Unfortunately, it also cost brave young Kendrick his life. The life of his parents, Maria and John Castillo obviously hasn’t been the same since that fateful day in May. As a way to cope with the loss of their only child, the couple has been finding ways to hold on to Kendrick’s memory, and make a statement at the same time. The two drive Kendrick’s Jeep as long as it’s running well. They say it gives them comfort to be in it. Kendrick’s mother, Maria says It feels like her son is next to her when she’s in it, and she can still smell him in the Jeep when she gets in. 

Kendrick’s father, John, said: “When we get out of his Jeep and we walk away, he’s with us. When we come out, he’s there waiting for us, that’s what this Jeep represents,”  The two also write messages on the Jeep’s windows. They change the messages out regularly to share their feelings to the community, and they range from notes of hope, to frustration, to remembrance. They also put up different cardboard posters in the windshield when they park the Jeep displaying different messages about gun safety, and the call justice, and for measures to keep kids safe in their own schools.  On Saturday, November 30th, there will be a “Jeeps and Taps” event benefiting the Notre Dame Catholic School Scholarship Fund in Kendrick’s honor at Max Taps brewery in Highlands Ranch, Colorado from 1 to 8 p.m.  If your able, we encourage you to show up, Kendrick’s Jeep will be there, and folks are encouraged to bring their Jeeps, too.  With his vehicle, they hope their son’s memory will live on.

Sat. November 30th “Jeeps and Taps” event benefiting the Notre Dame Catholic School Scholarship Fund
Max Taps brewery in Highlands Ranch, Colorado from 1 to 8 p.m.
https://www.maxtaps.com/

Radio Comm Tech:

This is Jon and today we are going to talk about your communication options.  The most common option is CB, however other options include GMRS, FRS, MURS, PLMRS, and ham radio. Some do not require a license, some do. There are a couple of questions you will need to answer in order to help guide you towards the radio service that may best serve your needs.
1. Who do you want to talk to and what are they using?
2. Do you ride with a group, various groups, with a few friends or alone.
3. Are you wanting trail/convoy communication or to be able to reach out for an emergency as an example?
Trail/Convoy comms: CB is probably still the most common form of communication between off road groups and is still required for many organized events. MURS (no license) is another option, though it is not widely used. GMRS (license required) is slowly gaining in popularity and it also communicates with FRS (no license) handhelds so they can also be used for those without GMRS or for spotters. Ham radio is also suitable for trail comms in addition to emergency comms and it is versatile, but for those groups that don’t want to take the ham test and get licensed (as easy as it is) then GMRS is a suitable alternative for trail/convoy communication.  PLMRS also operates on frequencies close to ham radio VHF and UHF frequencies and best serves a dedicated group.  Contact outside your group/Emergencies: If we are discussing 2 way radios only, then ham radio without a doubt. There are many hams, repeaters, and linked repeater networks across the country. Many times someone is monitoring, even if you don’t hear any traffic. Ham radio is also capable of APRS which can be use for tracking your vehicle, sending SMS test messages/emails, getting weather reports, etc though much of this does require infrastructure and is not always 100% it is a useful tool to have in addition to voice communication. A PLB or Personal Locator Beacon is also a valuable emergency tool.  If you ride with groups you will probably want to use what they are using, however after this segment you may want to convince them to upgrade.  We’ll discuss the specs and the pros and cons of each radio service on upcoming radio comm tech segments.

Jeep Life:

Recap of the T.A.T Adventure Part one of Jeep Momma & Neil’s Adams Xtreme Off Road Adventure. I quickly learned what it means to the adventure lead you. We started out with throwing all plans out the window and winging it. The first part of the trip was on the East Coast driving along the Trans American Trail. You can follow the day by day journal on my blog at www.Jeepmomma.com

Interview with:

Jared Oldham, Jeeper, Overland Enthusiast, Outdoor Adventurer

Jared has been a Jeep fan his entire life. His first Jeep was a 2004 Jeep Wrangler. Now he owns a 2012 Jeep Wrangler. Over the past few years he has been exploring trails and backroads all over Utah documenting it on his YouTube Channel. Backroad Exploration.

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

Driving a Jeep or really ANY vehicle with one headlight pointed toward the ditch (or the sky, or the other lane) is worse than annoying – it’s actually dangerous. Blinding the vehicles coming at you is never a good thing, as they can drift over into your lane, and clip you head on. No fun. Oh sure it looks neat when in dense fog you have a lightsaber coming off the front of your Jeep pointing out into outer space. But not properly illuminating the road surface in front of you can lead to an accident in the right circumstances. All it takes is a minor fender bender, some light trail damage, or even a change in ride height or stance to alter the aim of your Jeeps headlights. Fortunately, headlights feature adjusting screws that make it easy to fine-tune the aim of the lights… if you know how to use them. And if the setting on my mirror is any indication, there are MANY of you out there that have no idea what I’m talking about. Adjusting headlights on virtually any vehicle is so easy anyone can do it. And all it takes is some masking tape and a screwdriver. It’s so easy in fact it calls into question the intellect of those douche nozzles driving bro-dozers with 18” of lift and 52’s with 4 shocks in each corner and not one red cent towards a screwdriver to adjust those headlights. Ok, enough ranting, let’s get on to some adjusting. Some vehicle manufacturers want to make it easy on you by including a leveling bubble in the headlight assembly. This is not unlike a carpenter’s level and can often can aid in the adjustments. Be advised though, this is for use on vehicles that are at factory ride height, and haven’t had any modifications made to the suspension. Many adjusters are accessible under the hood, while some can be accessed through the headlight bezel itself. The difference that properly-aimed headlights makes can be amazing if you’ve gotten used to driving with headlights pointed in different directions. All it takes is four simple steps to get your Jeeps eyes pointed in the right direction. 

Step 1 – With the Jeep on level ground, pull up to a large flat wall. The side of a warehouse, or a large brick and mortar building work well. 

You’re garage door might work if your driveway is flat and long enough, but the building method usually works best. You’re going to want the Jeep’s front end as close to the wall as you can get it, Like with the bumper almost touching. All while being perfectly perpendicular, or square to it.

Step 2 – With masking tape, (that blue painter’s tape works great or gorilla glue duct tape works real good too,) put 2 crosses on the wall that correspond with the vertical and horizontal center lines of both headlights with the low beams on.

It is also a good idea to mark the centerline of the Jeep too. This will help with side to side alignment later if its needed.

Step 3 – Move the Jeep back 25 ft., keeping the Jeep centered with the tape crosses on the wall. It’s important that you remain perfectly square to the wall, and that you move as straight back from your starting point as possible. 

And yes, the 25 feet needs to be pretty accurate too, so make sure you have a tape measure handy.

Step 4 – Examine the light pattern and make the adjustments. The Low Beams should be hitting the lower right sections of the crosses. If they’re not, use the horizontal/vertical adjusting screws to aim the headlight beams two inches below and to the right of the taped center lines. This would be a good time to adjust left to right to correct for any damage to the front end of your Jeep potentially forcing the light out of alignment.

Now, you can adjust the high-beam hotspots. Turn on the High Beams and they should split the cross hairs you have on the wall. Here’s a tip if you’re running high wattage lights. You may find it easier to block one headlight with a towel or a sweatshirt draped over it,  and make these adjustments one light at a time.  And there you go! You should have a good grasp now on how to align your Jeep’s headlights properly. Next week, we’ll go over head light basics, what the difference is between the different types of bulbs out there, what’s good and what to stay away from, and what all that fancy terminology really means. 

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

Rancho RS62125 Rear Shock and Control Arm Skid Plates for 18-20 Jeep Wrangler JL –  $151.99 – Free Shipping

Adding a pair of Rancho Rear Shock and Control Arm Skid Plates provides the protection needed to keep your shock and control arm mounts from taking damage.  Installs easily using existing bolt holes from the control arms and shocks. A red powder coated finish over the ¼” thick low alloy steel resists corrosion and scrapes while gliding over obstacles easily. Installation can be done in the driveway or garage with simple hand tools.

https://www.quadratec.com/p/rancho/rear-shock-and-control-arm-skid-plates-jeep-wrangler-jl

Jeep Weather:

Mitch

Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the twenty-ninth of November 2019, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I intentionally got snowed in up in Northern California for it, started snowing Tuesday at lunch, nothing like going topless and hot tubs in the snow. On to the weather! Let’s find someplace warm to go Topless in, how about Miami, Florida? Bust out that canvas bikini top, sunscreen, and your cruising shades. Sunny with maybe some clouds, Friday 80, Saturday 79, and Sunday 82. Just because it might be cloudy, doesn’t mean you won’t burn your nuts off. Hey look at this! Outside Fort Benning, Home of the Infantry, is Columbus, Georgia. I went to basic training here way back when and they are having decent weather this weekend. Show your support to some new soldiers and go Topless here! Friday will be 69, Saturday 72, and Sunday rain with 66 degrees. Lastly, we went topless up here in South Lake Tahoe, California. Lots of snow is planned with 25 Friday, 30 Saturday and 36 for Sunday! Not to brag but I survived that drive and the heaters work well! If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash 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:

Brush Beaters Jeep Club – Wheeling 4 Toys
December 14th
Kansas Rocks Recreation Park, Mapleton, Kansas
More Info: This great event is held the second weekend in December every year. The sole purpose of this event is to gather hundreds of toys and distribute them to needy kids throughout the area for Christmas. Fun is also on the agenda as they provide expert guided trail rides, a hot lunch and a fabulous drawing for great prizes. Another great event with the benefits going to a wonderful cause promises to give these kids a warm heart and a big smile on Christmas day. It will definitely warm your heart as well.
http://www.ksrockspark.com/
https://www.facebook.com/KansasRocksPark

Southington Off Road – Open Trail Ride
December 14th
Garrettsville, Ohio
More Info: http://www.southingtonoffroad.com/
(This park is doing a big Black Friday run this weekend too)

Links Mentioned in Episode 413:
ExtremeTerrain.com – Bumper Selection Video
https://www.extremeterrain.com/wrangler-jeep-front-bumpers.html

Episode 412 – Tuffy Security Products

Please visit our sponsors:

ExtremeTerrain,ExtremeTerrain, …brought to you by ExtremeTerrain, Wrangler off-road parts and accessories outfitter. Stay tuned to for their Throttle Out SEMA Coverage featuring Joe Dick’s top 3 Jeep picks.

This episode of the Jeep Talk Show is sponsored in part by: Black Magic Brake Products, they build Big Brake Kits for your Jeep!  BlackMagicBrakes.com sells Direct Bolt-In Vanco Big Brake Kits with Black Magic Brake Pads and NEW Steering Knuckles. Find out more by visiting Black Magic Brakes dot com, that’s Black Magic Brakes dot com.

Call us: 530-675-4102

Email us: info@JeepTalkShow.com

This Week In Jeep:

Major Recall on Grand Cherokees

Announced just this week, FCA is recalling nearly 700,000 Dodge Durangos, and Jeep Grand Cherokees. The recall is due to faulty electrical connection that could prevent the engine from starting or completely stall out on you at the most inopportune time. 

This affects all 2011 through 2013 Dodge Durangos, and Jeep Grand Cherokees, most of which are in North America, but there’s over 100,000 that are outside the US as well, so heads up to all our Canadian and Mexican listeners too. The current issue, pun intended, is apparently with the fuel pump relays. Silicon deposits can collect on the contact points disrupting the electrical current which of course would starve the engine of fuel causing it to die.  As serious as this problem is, FCA is still trying to figure out ALL the steps required to fix the issue for good. The reason I say “for good” is that SOME of the vehicles being recalled were ALREADY part of a previous recall for a very similar issue where the fuel pump relays would lose signal and the engine would shut off. Right now, the plan is to notify owners to schedule appointments with their local dealers, and the dealers will then be instructed as to what to do, and when they can begin doing it. FCA said it is not aware of any crashes or injuries related to this issue.  If you own a 2011 to 2013 Grand Cherokee or Dodge Durango, or know someone who does, hang tight, and FCA will be contacting you soon about when you can schedule your fix with the dealer.  Want a discount on a new Gladiator? We’ll tell you how. Also, FCA initials a massive recall of Grand Cherokees.

Willing To Give Up That Colorado or Frontier?

There’s no denying that the Jeep Gladiator is a booming sales success, and Jeep is all about selling them off as fast as the Toledo Ohio Factory can build them. Since officially going on sale earlier this year, over 16,000 Gladiators have been sold. And with an average price of over $50,000, there’s also no denying the profits Jeep and FCA are raking in. Jeep along with virtually every other automaker, wants to end the year with a bang. And one sure fire way of making that happen is to sell more units. But, of course, buyers need to be enticed. It was discovered this week, that a bulletin was sent to Jeep dealerships authorizing an old but useful sales tactic, the conquest bonus.

Let it be known that this is not the type of conquests you’d have at a college frat party. As fun as those are, this is simply a discount designed specifically to get buyers to switch brands. Unlike those keg stands at a frat party that had you switching teams. Jeep is apparently sending a promotional offer, via either direct mail or email, to certain groups of truck owners in the US. This offer is worth $2,000 towards a new Gladiator.

Remember that coupon we spoke of a few episodes back? This trumps that for sure. It turns out this is the single largest discount on the 2020 Gladiator that FCA has EVER authorised. In fact, this offer is double that of last month’s loyalty discount coupon that targeted Jeep owners. Unfortunately, yes…. there IS a catch.  The offer cannot be applied towards the top-of-the-line Gladiator Rubicon trim. Actually it may come as a surprise to some of you, but Jeep recently increased the Rubicon trim’s price by $330 without explanation. Maybe it’s just supply and demand, who knows, either way, you’re not getting a discount on a Rubicon Gladiator. Fortunately, there are three other great Gladiator trim levels available: Sport, Sport S, and Overland. The Sport’s MSRP is currently $33,545 without any added options. Combined with this latest discount, assuming you’re coming from a rival brand, that price drops to $31,545.

And that’s before you start haggling on the price. Imagine getting a decently trimmed Gladiator for 30 grand or less. This still gets you a new Gladiator with that very powerful V6, a six-speed manual transmission, 17-inch wheels, and a 5-inch Uconnect touchscreen display. Might have some of you thinking about switching teams afterall!

Contributor Segment:

Chris with Sevenslats.com The seven slats myth.

Wrangler Talk:

Steering break down starting with the building blocks of our steering systems.

Hello JTS listener and let’s get right into the steering system of your jeep. There is a lot to talk about when it comes to our steering system of our rigs and jeep has used two different styles of linkages on our wranglers over the past few years, so this is going to be another multi-week wrangler segment. So, let first cover the main building blocks of your steering system and this might sound weird bit your whole steering system starts with your ball joints. Yes, I know that some people might say that they are not the building blocks of our jeep but through my experience they are usually the main culprit for a lot of problems when it comes to the steering system of our Jeep. So, lets dig into what a ball joint is, and an automotive ball joint is considered a spherical bearing that connects our axle shaft inner C to the steering knuckle. A ball joint most similarly represents the human hip joint meaning it is a ball and socket assembly that is free to move in any direction with limitations. All ball joints are made of very durable materials and they serve as the pivot point between your axle and wheels. Ball joints can also be found in the linkage systems that link your steering knuckles to your steering box. Although they are made of very durable material, they are naturally designed to wear out. This is part of their design, so they can take a lot of the abuse that we put them through when we are on road or off-road with our jeeps. There a couple different types of ball joint out on the mark although they all have the same general design. There are two different types of ball joints out on the market. The first type of ball joint is a standard ball joint that has three main components the ball, the socket, and a plastic polymer insert that provides low friction movement of the ball inside the socket. This type of ball joint is great for low-load applications, and usually they are called sealed ball joint. The sealed ball joint is considered lubricated for life meaning they do not need any type of service during their lifetime. These ball joints come stock on your jeep from the factor and they are great for the stock application that we use them for until we start making those fun modifications. Also, these types of lubed for life ball joints are found on the steering linkage of the stock wranglers. So when do you replace these lubed for life joints well a good rule of thumb is for sealed ball joints is to replace them every 80,000 miles. This is the common recommendation from all ball joint manufacturers. The next style of ball joint is a HD serviceable ball joint where engineers eliminated the polymer insert. These style of ball joints have three main components as well, they have a ball and socket which is the same as the sealed joints however there is now a hole located on the socket where a zerk fitting is placed. A zerk fitting is a metal fitting that is used in mechanical systems to feed lubricants into the ball joint under some pressure. HD serviceable ball joints are usually made of a case-hardened socket and ball that has been precisely machined to fit together. These ball joints are a metal to metal friction and that is why very important to regularly service the ball joints. For serviceable ball joints they should be greased every oil change, which is a good rule of thumb unless you are heading out on a wheeling trip then I recommend greasing them before you go, your ball joints will thank you in the long run. So how do we tell if we need to replace out ball joints? The most common way to tell if you need ball joints is you may hear a clicking or snapping sound when you turn the wheel one way or the other, and a squeaking sound when you hit the brakes. This is cause by the ball moving around inside the socket. Another common symptom of wearing ball joints is losing control when hitting bumps in the road because the ball joints are too loose inside their sockets. This can also be observed if you jack up the front end of your jeep off the ground and push on your tire in the lateral direction and watch the movement in the ball joint. There should not be any play in the lateral direction, meaning from the outside of the tire towards the axle shaft. If there is any play side to side I would recommend getting your ball joints replaced immediately. Another symptom of your ball joints going bad is that your rig might being to drift when driving down the road. So, if you have never checked or greased your ball joints it might be a good idea to do that this weekend. Driving on worn ball joints is dangerous too. Also, with worn ball joints you are putting a lot more stress on the other components of your steering system, and can lead to premature failure of other components in the steering system. This concludes this week’s wrangler talk. I hope you have learned something about Ball joints even though this talk was supposed to be about steering systems. Well Ball joints are the main building block of our steering system, so we need to start with the basics. Thank you for listening to this week’s Wrangler talk and remember did I get something wrong or forgot something important well head over to our contact page on our website at jeeptalkshow.com/contact and send us an email or leave us a voice message and we will continue talking about steering systems next week.

Interview with:

Jason Larson – Western Region Sales Manager w/ Tuffy Products

Jeep Momma Product Review:

Nexen Tires Roadian MTX

I put 10,000 miles on my Roadian MTX tires over the span of 1 month. We wheeled every terrain out there from mud, sand, snow, rocks, dirt roads, highways and even sharp lava rocks in the Mojave that would of shredded the sidewalls of other tires. These tires held up amazing! We tried out 14 PSI on a trail and 35 on the same trail and they both rocked it. You don’t need to go lower than 14 PSI on the trails and they have the same foot print as another tire would at 8 to 10.

The forward bit was amazing, Neil told me the forward bit is on par with competition stickies. The lateral stability is solid. Their unique sidewall construction is amazing too second to none. I beat the crap out of those sidewalls and they held up with the beating. I would say they are just as noisy as my Duratracs. Neil felt that’s the one downfall is the noise. They are sensitive to air pressure but you can expect that because they are born from a performance tire. Nexen Tire is new into the off road world as their tires are performance tires racing and drifting. You will need to find the right tire pressure for your vehicle while your on the highway. 14 definitely for off road. 27 worked good for dirt roads and 32 for the highway for my Jeep. another note you need to remember these tires have an F-load sidewall rating.

Camp Fire Side Chat:

DJI Mavic Mini

Jeep Weather:

Mitch

Mitch takes you on a Thanksgiving wet t-shirt contest trip. Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the Twenty-Second of November 2019, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. As we are going into Thanksgiving in the U.S. I figure we can do a little historical tour to go topless this weekend in preparation. Hopefully the nippily temps burn calories for you, so you’ll have more room for food. Starting off, let us Go Topless in Jamestown, Virginia. Here the first recorded prominent celebration was held in 1610. This weekend it will be great for a wet t-shirt contest too! Rainy with 59 on Friday, 50 Saturday, and 55 on Sunday. However, the most famous U.S. Thanksgiving was in Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1621 when the settlers of the Plymouth Plantation celebrated their first successful harvest after a harsh winter killed half their population. Depressing to be sure now but change that around by going Topless here and making people smile. Plymouth will be also rainy with 55 on Friday, 46 for Saturday, and 51 on Sunday. The Continental Congress with The First National Proclamation of Thanksgiving in 1777 was made in York, Pennsylvania. So that is where I suggest Going Topless next! As with the whole east coast of the U.S. it is raining here too. 52 Friday, 47 Saturday and Sunday. My favorite president of the U.S. Teddy Roosevelt declared in 1901, Thanksgiving to be a national holiday. This was his first proclamation as President. Taking over for President William McKinley when he died from a gunshot to the stomach. In his decree he said: Be thankful for work, prove your thankfulness through actions not words, and stop everything to be thankful. From us at the Jeep Talk Show, Happy Thanksgiving. If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash 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

GenRight – Christmas To New Years Week Of Wheeling
Dec 26th – Jan 1st
Johnson Valley, California (King of Hammers)
More Info: https://genright.com

Guided Reindeer Run
December 8th
Rausch Creek Off Road Park, Pine Grove, Pennsylvania (http://rc4x4.org/)
More Info: https://offroad-consulting.com/

Links Mentioned in Episode 412:

https://www.tuffyproducts.com/
http://www.blackmagicbrakes.com/
https://www.extremeterrain.com/
https://www.nexentireusa.com/tires/roadian_mtx
https://amzn.to/2pGg7d3 – Mavic Mini Drone

Episode 411 – Jeep Vandalism!

Please visit our sponsors:

ExtremeTerrain,ExtremeTerrain, Wrangler off-road parts and accessories outfitter. Stay tuned to learn more about ExtremeTerrain’s Jeep Wrangler Fluid Capacities Tech guide.

This episode of the Jeep Talk Show is sponsored in part by: Black Magic Brake Products, they build Big Brake Kits for your Jeep!  BlackMagicBrakes.com sells Direct Bolt-In Vanco Big Brake Kits with Black Magic Brake Pads and NEW Steering Knuckles. Find out more by visiting Black Magic Brakes dot com, that’s Black Magic Brakes dot com.

This Week In Jeep:

Veteran’s Jeep Vandalized on Veteran’s Day

According to an incident report, the crime happened late at night on Veterans Day, into the early morning hours on Tuesday.

Lindsay Koehler, the wife of the Jeep’s owner said does not know why someone would damage their property, but feels like this was some sort of personal attack.

Investigators said there is no indication of that, but the owners of the Jeep find it a little strange that the Jeep was the only vehicle that was hit, while there were other cars in their driveway that night and Tuesday morning.

Her mother-in-law was leaving about 7:30 Tuesday morning, and came back into the house to tell Lindsay and her Husband that someone had let the air out of the tires on their Jeep. Going out to see the Jeep for themselves, the Koehler’s saw that the vandals had not just let the air out of the tires, but they had been slashed.  The vandals sliced and slashed the windows of the soft top too. Then they saw things got worse. The seats we all completely torn up, cut and slashed, and ripped. They then saw that the paint had also been vandalized and that they had written “a word.” That word, or just letters rather, say K-O-M-Y. Koehler and investigators are not sure what it means.

Koehler says her Army veteran husband is still taking the damage in. “He feels very betrayed, very unsafe,” Koehler said. Bob Kealing with the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office said this is more than just broken property. “This happens on Veterans Day, and people need to understand that this is more than vandalism. It’s a crime. You have significant damage done to this vehicle, also someone burglarized it so, it’s not just a crime, it’s multiple crimes,” Kealing said.

Despite the damage, Koehler said she still forgives whoever is responsible. “Absolutely, they obviously need help. It’s just an object; I can fix the object. 

The person’s the one that needs the help,” Koehler said.

Lindsay and her husband said they would like to thank the community for helping and supporting them through this difficult time.

The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office asks that you think back to any conversations you may have heard about the vandalism, or if someone posted about the crime on social media and to contact them if you know anything about the damaged Jeep.

2020 Jeep Wrangler Diesel Price Announced

The first-ever U.S. market Diesel version of the Jeep Wrangler will be chugging into showrooms soon. Pricing for the much anticipated SUV has been released and the dealer order books are open as Jeep awaits final fuel economy certification prior to the commencement of sales in a few weeks. The new 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 diesel is largely shared with the Ram 1500 and puts out a respectable 260 hp but boasts a whopping 442 lb-ft of torque in the Wrangler. It’s offered across all trim levels, but only on 4×4 four-door models equipped with an 8-speed automatic transmission. So if you had aspirations of owning a new Diesel Wrangler with a manual, i’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it aint going to happen off the showroom floor. 

The lowest-priced Sport diesel starts at $37,795, which is $4,500 more than one powered by its 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine and a $3,250 step from the 3.6-liter V6 gasoline option. Those differences also apply to the Sport S and hardcore off-road Rubicon trim levels as well. For 2020, the dressy Sahara is the only Wrangler available with the pricier mild hybrid “eTorque” versions of the gas engines, which add an electric motor boost which helps to eliminate low-end lag for improved launch performance while enhancing fuel economy. Jeep promises that the diesel’s fuel economy will be the best ever seen for a Wrangler, which is currently rated at 21 mpg combined with the 2.0-liter turbo 4. After launching in the Wrangler, the engine will be added to the Gladiator pickup for the 2021 model year. So maybe buying a Gladiator as a tow rig makes a little more sense now with the diesel option.

Wrangler Talk:

MAking a change, going to talk about tire beads this week not steering. 

Hello JTS Listener and welcome to this week’s Wrangler talk. So, I know I said we were going to be talking about steering systems, but I am going to push that off and talk about another topic. Let’s talk about tire balancing and specifically balancing beads. Well I know you just spent all that money on cool wheels for your rig and now you don’t want to have to put those ugly wheel weights on the bead of your wheel. Well the next option is balancing beads. Balancing beads are tiny plastic beads that you put inside your tires, and I am not talking about airsoft plastic pellets. Yes, I know people use air soft pellets as balancing beads, but I am specifically talking about the balancing bead kits. I do not recommend using airsoft pellets, they have a larger diameter then the plastic beads that are sold in balancing bead kit. The smaller beads allow for a more accurate distribution of the beads inside the tire. So first why would you want to use a balancing bead kit. Well when we start increasing the size of the tires they tend to need more and more weight to balance the tire, and balancing beads allow for more weight to be added to the tire and better balancing of the tire. Secondly when it comes to balancing weights they do have a tendency to fall off when we are off-road, and with balancing beads do not ever fall off or come off the tire when we are wheeling.  Another great benefit of the balancing beads is that they automatically re-balance the tire every time you stop and start again. Finally, they are great with tires that have a more aggressive tread on them like our mud terrain tires. So how do they work. Ok let’s picture the inside of the tire at rest. All the balancing beads are resting at the bottom of the tire. Then we start to travel forward and with the rotation of the tire these beads are forced outwards and start sticking to the wall of the tire. When the tire rotates forward small vibration begin to start in the tire. These vibrations are caused by the heavy spots in the tire. Also, as the tire rotates the beads begin to spread out evenly over the wall of the tire, the beads are forced against the wall of the tire by centrifugal force. It is the same force that is used in that fun amusement park ride where you lay against the wall. As the beads start to evenly distribute around the tire they start to fall into the light spots in the tire. That mean like every lite spot that is in the tire. When the balancing beads begin to fall into the lite spots in the tires the tire begins to balance itself. Also, some might ask well how long does this take to happen, well the process really takes effect when the tire starts to spin at about 30 mph. Before 30 mph the tire’s vibrations are not that strong to be felt inside the vehicle unless the tire is really out of balance. As the tire reaches 30 mph the forces acting on the tire begin to hold the balancing beads against the wall of the tire and they begin to work their magic. I personally use these balancing beads in my tires and I absolutely love them. Another question I get asked it how much should I put into my tire, and my answer is check with the tire balancing bead manufacture. Each manufacture has different specifications and amounts you should put into the tire. So, if you follow the manufacturer’s recommendation you should be okay. Finally, the last question that I get is do they come out when I air down my tire, and the answer is “no”. Usually the manufacture will supply another specific valve stem for your tire to use with the beads but also the beads are laying at the bottom of the tire not anywhere near the valve stem to be able to be sucked out the hole. So, I would recommend going on line and buying an actual balancing bead kit and use them yourself. I do not recommend using airsoft pellets to get the same effect. Yes, they may work for some people, but I would hate to see it not work for you. Thank you for listening to this week’s wrangler talk and remember if you have any questions about anything you heard on this episode or if you want to know about something specific send us an email or leave us a voice message on our website at JeepTalkShow.com/contact and remember to join us next week where we will actually be talking about steering.

Interview with:

Paul Fernandez

General Manager at AutomotiveTouchup Paint. AutomotiveTouchup is known for producing automotive touchup paint for any vehicle, and its paint options extend from the newest models on dealer lots to classic marques and models. The company also provides perfect match OEM paint color matches for vehicles which are now discontinued and whose paint is difficult to find as a result. The company is a division of Microfinish, which produces coatings for vehicles and industrial equipment repair and refinishing in its state-of-the-art facility. Paul is in charge of production, human resources, recruitment, and most of the day to day activities. He was born in New Orleans, attended the university there, and joined AutomotiveTouchup soon after the company was started.

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk:

Going From Soft To Hard…. Tops.

We tried to put it off for as long as possible. We closed the blinds to avoid seeing the leaves turn, and are still sporting flip flops and shorts despite fall definitely being here and winter is most definitely knocking at the door. It’s that time of year when we cant go topless as much as we’d like, and for some of us, it means switching from a soft top, to a hard top. So I’m going to go over the proper way to go from soft top to hardtop, and all the things that needs to be taken into consideration when doing so. We’ll get into the hows and why’s and even get into specific details of how to winterize your soft top, and other storage considerations. Ok first off, we’re going to make some assumptions here. First that you actually have both a soft top installed and a hard top in storage ready to go on, and that you have at least one extra set of hands, and some basic hand tools. Outside of that, this isn’t really rocket science, but if you’re new to the jeep world, or new to soft tops, then we may have some tips that you’ll want to utilize as you make the transition from soft top to hardtop. I suppose I should stop right here and apologize for not mentioning something sooner. Who puts away their bedding or clothes without washing them first? Not me! The best time to clean your top is right before it comes off to be stored for the winter. That way when it comes time to put it back on in the spring, it’s clean and ready to go. One nice thing about a Wrangler hard top is you can drive right through an automatic car wash without an issue and come out clean on the other side. With a Wrangler soft top, automatic car washes must be avoided. The large spinning brushes in drive through car washes can easily scratch soft top windows because of either stiff bristles or from dirt left on the brushes from a vehicle that went through before you. A touchless automatic car wash is unlikely to damage your top, although it is very likely to get some leakage due to the high pressure nozzles pointing at your top from various directions. Another downside to automatics is it would be extremely loud from the sounds of the high pressure water, not to mention, you’re likely not going to get it all that clean. Cleaning a Jeep soft top is best done by hand. If you use the manual wash station at a carwash be sure to wash your top first. Start with the roof and then wash off the foam brush or wash rag thoroughly before moving on to the soft windows. Make sure the brush/rag is clean as any dirt left behind can severely scratch your windows. After you finish cleaning the top rinse off all of the soap to prevent soap from drying on it and leaving behind ugly stains. Additionally, if you would like to prevent water spots on your windows wipe them dry with a soft, dry cloth. An important thing to remember about your soft windows is under no circumstance should you wipe dirt off them with your hand or a towel. This must be done with a soft wet cloth so the dirt is picked up and not dragged across the windows, scratching them. A common misconception with vinyl based soft tops is that they require extreme care and caution when cleaning. You can use general car wash soap to clean your top, but there are vinyl specific cleaners that do a much better job. Trust me, it’s worth the time and money to get this stuff. There are also specific fabric cleaners for twill style tops, but again, you can use a basic car soap on these too. For the best results, a soft horse hair brush and a dedicated vinyl or fabric cleaner is the way to go. Remember, a soft cloth is the only answer to vinyl windows to avoid scratches. Like anything else, your soft top needs to be properly cared for in order for it to last. The most important part of maintenance is keeping the top clean. This helps prevent stains, holes, abrasion, and will reduce the likelihood of scratches on your windows. All of the zippers on the top should be regularly treated with zipper lubricant to prevent them from seizing, breaking, and ripping. If your window zippers are seized, do not pull them hard. This will only destroy the zipper or rip the fabric it is sewn to. Zipper Ease 227 Lubricant, Quadratec’s Zip Slick, and Bestop’s Zipper Cleaner and lubricant are all good products that will work year round to keep your zippers from seizing or breaking. Next week, we’re going to pick up right where we left off, and get into the exact procedure for removal of the soft top, how to winterize it, and how to store it for the winter. Stay warm, stay dry, and next week, we’ll wrap things up and get you under that cozy hard top.

Must Have Stuff for your Jeep:

Omix-ADA Wrangler Soft Top Front Cross Bow Set 

$57.59 – (97-06 Jeep Wrangler TJ)

https://www.extremeterrain.com/omix-ada-jeep-wrangler-soft-top-front-cross-bow-set-1351085.html

Nobody likes sagging or flapping Soft Tops. So why not do something about it before the snow and rain fall this year ends up falling in through your top. Whether you want to face it or not, your Jeep’s soft top is prone to sagging when it accumulates water from heavy rains or excessive snowfall. Especially if it’s been around for a while. Letting this go on for too long will result in leaks, fading, or worse, a complete failure of the top itself, allowing whatever is on the top, or falling from the sky to fall right into your Jeep. That is, if you don’t have this installed: The Omix-ADA Soft Top Front Cross Bow Set. Apart from preventing sagging of the top’s material and making sure that water simply rolls off, instead of pooling up on your top, this cross bow kit also prevents the soft top from flapping while driving down the road, or in heavy winds. This is especially valuable during high-speed driving, resulting in a substantially quieter driving experience whether you’re in the city or out in the trails. Omix-ADA crafted this front cross bow set from high-quality materials to ensure its superior durability and strength. You can count on it to hold up your Jeep’s soft top for years without bending or cracking. This front cross bow set comes with all the hardware you need for an easy and straightforward installation. It requires simple hand tools for installation, which can be completed in less than 1 hour. Comes With a 5-Year Limited Warranty.

Jeep Weather:

Mitch

Cloudy with a high chance of being Topless.

Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the Fifteenth of November 2019, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report.

This week, I was thinking about where to take your Jeep out Topless now that winter has touched most of North America. I’ve figured out a solution, it’s going to take some balls and… its completely cool to blast your heater and still be Topless.  Alright so let’s cut some diamonds in Fairbanks, Alaska! One may say that it is nippily there. Friday and Saturday will be cloudy at 8 and 6 degrees respectively, and Sunday you may get some concealment while Topless in some snow flurries at 1 degree. This may also be a good time for a disclaimer, I am using Fahrenheit for all my temperatures.

Maybe you chase the last of summer south so being Topless isn’t as difficult. That can work, so our next stop is Calgary, Alberta. It’s not that cold as you would think. That’s a start but it’ll still be cloudy there. Friday will be 45, Saturday 44, and Sunday 53 degrees.  Now you make it further south with better weather to keep your top off. In Helena, Montana it will be 52 on Friday, 49 on Saturday, and 51 on Sunday. Hey Listener, at least all these places will be cloudy making for some good pictures to prove you went Topless! Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash contact and use any of those ways to send in your proof.

You made it south, so you’re Topless in Ottumwa, Iowa. Radar says that it will still be cloudy here though. Hey, it’ll be 46 on Friday, 44 on Saturday, and 43 on Sunday. Maybe next week I’ll find you some warmer weather, but you’re a Jeeper, Jeepers are crazy enough to go Topless and wheel anywhere. That’s why we have Jeeps.  If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me.  I’m Mitch and It’s always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where:

Big Dogs Offroad – Toys for Tots Dirt Fest
November 30-December 1
The Cove – Gore, Virginia
More Info: https://bigdogsoffroad.com/html/toys_for_tots.html
Charity event, all toys will go to the Quantico Marine base toys for tots program.

Adventure Off Road Park Annual Toy Run
December 7
Adventure Off Road Park – South Pittsburg, Tennessee
More Info: http://adventureoffroadpark.com/
https://www.facebook.com/adventureoffroadpark/

Episode 410 – SEMA! SEMA! SEMA!

Please visit our sponsors:

Thought about removing your Wrangler or Gladiator Hardtop? Have you been struggling to find a solution? The J-BARR is a complete Jeep Hardtop removal hoist  and storage system that works with both Wrangler and Gladiator hardtops. It has never been easier to go topless! Check them out at www.j-Barr.com 

ExtremeTerrain,ExtremeTerrain, Wrangler off-road parts and accessories outfitter. Stay tuned to learn more about ExtremeTerrain’s Jeep Wrangler Fluid Capacities Tech guide.

This episode of the Jeep Talk Show is sponsored in part by: Black Magic Brake Products, they build Big Brake Kits for your Jeep!  BlackMagicBrakes.com sells Direct Bolt-In Vanco Big Brake Kits with Black Magic Brake Pads and NEW Steering Knuckles. Find out more by visiting Black Magic Brakes dot com, that’s Black Magic Brakes dot com.

This Week In Jeep: 

TEN Years In a Row! 

The annual SEMA show, where Tony is at AS I TYPE THIS, must be like nirvana for the Jeep brand, and the automaker’s specialty parts division isn’t disappointing this year bringing 14 vehicles to the show, including two pickup truck concepts as well as Jeep Wrangler Rubicon concept. The concept vehicles from Jeep the year are particularly timely as the Jeep Wrangler continued is unprecedented and unbroken run of success in Las Vegas after being named “4×4/SUV of the Year” for the 10th straight year. The Wrangler is the only vehicle to have won an award each and every single year since the honors began in 2010. Accepting the award was Mark Bosanac, Head of Mopar Service, Parts and Customer Care, of FCA – North America, he said winning this award 

is a testament not only to the staying power of the Jeep Wrangler, but also to the passion and creativity of the aftermarket community, which continues to select the Jeep Wrangler as a perfect canvas for customization. And it is too!, the awards don’t lie.

“Fill The Jeep” will feed thousands this year. 

The little Saint Michael Catholic School, at 48 Walnut St. in Brattleboro, Vermont will officially begin its Project Feed the Thousands food drive on Thursday morning.

This year, Saint Michael is partnering with Summit Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM to “Fill the Jeep.” Kelli Corbeil of Project Feed, and Mr. and Mrs. Capra of Summit will join the school in announcing the event. Students will have donation boxes in all their classrooms. From Nov. 8 through Dec. 20, families will be challenged to make donations, with classrooms competing against one another with weekly weigh ins.

At the end of the drive, all of the items will be piled into a vehicle provided by Summit and driven to the donation site for Project Feed the Thousands. There will be a vehicle parked outside of the school for the duration of the drive to remind Saint Michael families and church parishioners to “Fill the Jeep.” Of course I don’t think there is anything stopping Jeepers from outside the area to help out, so if you want to get involved, send some food, or volunteer. Contact the school administrators to see how.

Big news, not sure how good or bad though

On Thursday it became official: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and PSA Group are merging to become the world’s fourth-largest automaker. Alfa Romeo, Citroën, Chrysler, Dodge, DS, Fiat, Maserati, Opel, Peugeot, Ram, and Vauxhall will all now share a single corporate parent and begin merging operations. In a press release, Fiat Chrysler and PSA said that the 50:50 merger should save more than $4 billion (€3.7 billion) a year from “run-rate synergies without any plant closures.” …which is a fancy way of saying that as a conglomeration of all these automakers, they can (together) weather any storm the market brings, without resorting to layoffs and plant closures just to stay afloat. Merging with another large automaker has actually been FCA’s plan for a while. You may remember us reporting several times before his untimely death, that Sergio Marchionne (FCA’s former CEO) had conducted talks with many potential suitors. Just  earlier this year FCA was in active discussions with Renault, but those talks ultimately went nowhere. Now FCA will join up with France’s other big automaker, PSA Group.

On the face of it, it seems like utter nonsense, and I for one as a Jeep enthusiast feel like YOU probably do upon hearing this news, and have lost all hope for the brands future among so much european influence. However, to the more fiscally influenced, the merger makes a lot of sense. FCA has strong sales in the Americas and a decent portfolio of luxury brands and of course the shining jewel, and what some say are the only things keeping this automaker afloat, are the SUVs and trucks, namely the Jeep and Ram brands. Something that PSA doesn’t have. PSA is strong in Europe though, and its brands are better mainstream cars built using more modern architectures. 

PSA Group is also well ahead of FCA in terms of electrification.

The new company, which has yet to be named, will be registered in the Netherlands, although it will ((QUOTE))  “continue to maintain significant presences in the current operating head-office locations in France, Italy, and the US.” As for US car buyers, it’s probably a little too soon to know what this will mean in terms of the cars we might be able to buy. PSA Group has wanted to return to the US market for a while, and in February news broke that Peugeot would lead that charge. But currently the company’s sole US presence is a car-sharing service called Free2Move that operates in Washington, DC. I’d like to think modern American car buyers will take to quirky French crossovers with more enthusiasm than that which greeted a Alfa Romeo when they came back to the US. Time will tell, and I don’t know about where YOU live, ut out here in Oregon, Fiat didn’t do so well, while you cant drive 2 miles without seeing at least a few Jeeps of one sort or another. My two cents? Jeep and Ram should have left when they had the chance and reformed a new Mopar automaker presence globally, leaving behind the sinking Italian and French cars nobody here in the states really wanted to begin with. 

Wrangler Talk: 

All about Shafts this week, Driveshafts that is. 

Hello JTS listener and welcome to this week’s wrangler talk about Driveshafts. Well First off, we all know if we need anything driveshaft related let’s head over to Tom Wood’s Driveshaft. I can personally say that they know their stuff about everything to do with driveshafts and have the proper driveshaft you need for you rig or any build you are working on. Also remember if they don’t have what you exactly need they are amazing a building the correct driveshaft you specifically need for all those crazy awesome builds. So first let’s cover the reasons why you would need to change your drive shaft. Well the most obvious reason is you broke it, however there are a couple other reasons why you would need to change your driveshaft. We all know that your driveshaft transfers the power from your engine and transmission to your axles, and by doing this they will spin at great speeds. One of the most important parts of your driveshaft is making sure that it is balanced. So, we are going to keep with the Tom Wood’s driveshafts, and every driveshaft that is purchased from them is properly balanced when they are building it in their facilities. Although let’s talk about what can cause an imbalance in your driveshaft and it is very important to inspect your driveshaft for these possible failures. The first failure is losing your balancing weights that have been welded to the driveshaft tube. For example, the loss of a 1 oz weight off a drive shaft that has a 1-inch radius, or 2-inch diameter can cause a force of 16 lbs. in any direction and lead to premature failure. Secondly another possible imbalance in your driveshaft can be cause by the driveshaft tube having a dent in it. When a dent is imposed on the driveshaft it can change the whole geometry of the shaft and lead to failure. Also, a dent in the shaft can lead to other complications down the road. An imbalanced driveshaft can be diagnosed by observing a shaking or vibrations from under the vehicle. Although these vibrations can also be caused by your tires as well however one way to tell the difference between the different causes is driveshaft vibrations are not speed sensitive. Meaning that the vibrations coming from your driveshaft will be noticeable at all speeds where tire vibration will be noticed only after reaching a certain speed. Let’s continue talking about getting a dent in your driveshaft. When you get a dent in your driveshaft, you are causing a weak point in your shaft and this can lead to cracking of the shaft and eventually cause your driveshaft to completely crack or shear off and let me tell you your driveshaft will shear in the least idea situation where you really need all 4 tires spinning. Another driveshaft failure is phasing. Phasing is when the alignment of the two joints or yokes of the driveshaft are not on the same plane. All driveshafts should be within a maximum of 1.5 degrees of phasing. Phasing can be a sign of your driveshaft being undersized or having an excessive load on the driveshaft and I can say that your stock driveshaft is very weak compared to an aftermarket Tom Wood’s driveshaft. Now on to other types of failure of the driveshaft and the most common failure is the U-joints. U-joint stands for Universal joint meaning that during the rotation of the driveshaft the U-joint allows the shaft to flex about 20 to 35 degrees in any direction depending on the style of driveshaft you currently have. U-joint can fail in a few ways, a u-joint can become what we call burnt meaning that the studs of the U-joint will become overheated and start to wear prematurely. This will cause the studs to become rounded and eventually slip out of the yoke. When this happens, it can cause a lot of other unneeded damage. So, when looking at new U-joints for your driveshaft, I would recommend putting in serviceable U-joints, which means that they have a grease fitting on the side of the U-joint, so you can add grease to the joint. This will lubricate the joint and increase the life of it by 10-fold. Finally, when inspecting your U-joints also inspect the Yokes. The yokes are the area of the driveshaft that take the most abuse. Check for cracking, any nicks and gouges out of the yokes or bearing caps. This type of damage will cause the U-joint to be mis-align in the yoke and lead to failure. So, there are a lot of different ways a driveshaft can fail or need to be replaced, but the most common reason to replace your driveshaft is because you are putting a bigger lift on your jeep, YAAAAAYYYYY. Yes, I know this is the fun part, but I had to save the best for last. So, one of the purposes of the driveshaft is to slide in and out when your suspension begins to flex or move up and down. This is cause by the whole axle moving closer or further away from the transfer case  when the suspension moving through the travel range. When it comes to lifting your jeep, you are changing the geometry of the driveline and when you start changing the geometry specific angles that are needed for your jeep to drive smooth will change too. So, a good rule of thumb is when you are lifting your jeep any lift 2.5 inches and under your stock driveshaft should be okay and lifts over 2.5 inches will need a new driveshaft. However, with that always consult professionals about the geometry of your new suspension and they will be able to tell you whether you will need a new driveshaft or not. So, remember if you need any help with driveshafts head over to Tom Wood’s Custom Driveshafts and they will solve all your needs. This concludes this week’s wrangler talk and just remember if you have any questions or comments head over to JeepTalkShow.com/Contact and send us an email or leave us a voice message. Thank you for listening to this week’s wrangler talk and stay tuned to next week where we are going to dive into the steering system of your jeep.

Interview with:

Straight from SEMA 2019: Kevin and Scott “On the Trail Podcast”, Ryan “Viair”, Paul “Nexen”, Steve “Hi-Lift”, Dan Grec “The Road Chose Me”, Jason “Bolt Lock”, Jason “Tuffy”

Tech Talk With Jeep Talk: 

Low Dollar Tuning For Old YJ’s

It’s been a while since I gave some love to the YJ crowd. The YJ wrangler, otherwise known as the square headlight Wrangler, was made from 1987 through 1995. And despite getting a bad rap for being completely leaf sprung, and still sported a carburetor until 1991, the YJ Wrangler is a capable platform to build from. By now, however, the chance of finding a clean YJ from someone who doesn’t want an arm and a leg are slim to none. Out here in the pacific Northwest, virtually any and every YJ on the market has had some degree of modifications and customizations, and can be found in all sorts of conditions ranging from bad to worse. But if you just got one, or maybe have had one for a while and not sure what to do with it, I’m about to go over some very easy, and (here’s the key word to all this) inexpensive ways to breath some new life into the old power train of these old Wranglers. What I’m going to focus on this week will be the engine. Now for what I’m going to cover it really won’t matter if you have the 2.4L 4 banger, the 4.0L inline six, or the rare 4.2L inline six, all these tips will apply. 

Really, no matter the engine, the formula for healthy power is the proper proportion of air, fuel, and spark. Chances are that if your old YJ hasn’t seen any engine love in a while, it may be lacking in power. One of the easiest ways to get more power out of an engine is to get more air into it, or make it easier to get the air in. Ditch the restrictive factory air box and paper filter element. Nobody makes a complete cold-air intake for a TBI four-cylinder, if that’s what you have, but if you exercise some ingenuity, you can fab something up that will work real well regardless of what engine you have. Try this, simply cut a piece of 2.5-inch exhaust tubing from your local auto parts store and clamp whatever air filter you can find laying around on to the end of it. Seriously, you can get high flow K&N type air filters off the internet for less than $15.Although the additional air is going to help some, you still have the spark and the fuel to address. I’d move on to the plugs next. Cheap and easy, swapping out some old or mis-gapped plugs can make a huge difference. You can try and get fancy, but honestly, the older Jeep engines like the old copper core plugs best. They burn hot, and consistent, and those platinum E3’s or diamond fire plugs for many Jeepers have actually resulted in rougher ildes, and less power throughout the RPM range. With a little more air and working plugs properly gapped, you may want to inspect and or replace those plug wires cap and rotor. YEs this is basically just a tune up with some slight mods throw in for the sake of performance. After cleaning out the cap, sanding the contacts on it and the rotor to get rid of corrosion and oxidation, (or just replacing them if they’re old), you’ll want to break out the multi-meter and test the resistance in Ohms of each wire. Most stock resistance-type wires will run in the neighborhood of 10,000-15,000 ohms/foot resistance. Any more than that and the wire is bad. To get the correct value, measure your plug wires and do the math. Scrounge up some wires from a friends old tune up or the one you did on that other Jeep, or your daily driver. Honestly, any plug wire, regardless of the vehicle it came off of is going to be better than one that is frayed or worn out. And what supplies the voltage thru those wires? Why the coil of course. If your YJ still has the factory coil mounted to the firewall, then chances are you aren’t producing as good or as hot of a spark as you should be. Noxious fumes, poor performance and gas mileage is just the start of what you are allowing to happen by keeping that old coil in the system. A new coil for the YJ Wrangler is also less than $20 pretty much wherever you go, providing you’re not trying to go with an MSD system or something. The positive and negative posts on the factory coil simply clip into two female connectors on the ignition control module. Over time, these connections can get  grimy and corroded, so if buying a new coil isnt in the cards, you can help refresh the one you got by cleaning the contacts with a wire brush, spray them off with a little carb cleaner, and put some dielectric grease on them. Although it’s a pain to find the right bullet terminals, you can install an aftermarket coil mounted remotely if you build a couple of jumper wires. Really easy to do if you have the spare parts laying around. If you don’t want to trust the bullet connectors, you can use some spade-type connectors crimped onto the brass Ignition Control Module’s terminals. Be careful not to break off the fragile brass connectors though, or you’ll spend money on a new ignition module afterall. Run a couple tanks of premium through the system to help clean things out, and enjoy the newly restored power you now have back in your old YJ Wrangler.

Nicky G:

Jeep Weather:

Hey Jeeper, Mitch here, today is the Eighth of November 2019, and it’s time for your weekend Going Topless-Jeep Weather Report. I was trying to convince my wife to cruise around in my Jeep Topless this weekend. This weekend here, the weather is doing a surprise turn back up to 80s and I wanted to have a bit of fun. Well that didn’t work out the way I wanted it to, so… I’m out in my Jeep… alone. I guess, let’s get to the weather. Let’s start with all those lucky people at SEMA in Las Vegas, Nevada this week. There it will be a comfortable and sunny 79 on Friday and Saturday, and 78 on Sunday. From all the pictures people have been posting on Instagram, I know there is a lot of Toplessness happening at SEMA… oh and a lot of Jeeps are Topless too!

Well why not go Topless at the headquarters of Jeep? Toledo, Ohio will progressively get cloudier all weekend. 38 on Friday, 42 on Saturday, and 45 on Sunday. At least it’ll get progressively warmer too, making it easier to keep your Top off. Lastly, try going Topless in Oliver Springs, Tennessee. It is as perfect as we can get in continental U.S. during wintertime without risking surfing on hurricanes. Sunny with 49 on Friday, 55 on Saturday, 62 on Sunday. Just have all your headlights on and out at night while Topless, we don’t need you becoming an inspiration for a horror film. Now listener, my wife might have caught onto who I was trying to have Go Topless this weekend. Mostly because I have a Patriot and my Jeep isn’t the one who would be topless. I hope you have better luck than me with getting Topless… Jeeps.

Monday here in the U.S. of A is Veterans Day, so I’d like to thank all the service members listening for their service to their countries. Thank you!  If you have any suggestions or want to know YOUR local weather in an upcoming episode. Go to JeepTalkShow.com slash contact in order to find all the ways to get a message to me.  I’m Mitch and It’s always great weekend to Go Topless if you’re brave enough! Just Go Topless responsibly.

Wheeling Where:

Big Dogs Offroad – Toys for Tots Dirtfest
November 30-December 1
The Cove – Gore, Virginia
More Info: https://bigdogsoffroad.com/html/toys_for_tots.html
Charity event, all toys will go to the Quantico Marine base toys for tots program.

Shriners Ride
December 7
High Lifter Off Road Park – Shreveport, Louisiana
More Info: https://www.hlprovinggrounds.com/

Links Mentioned in Episode 410: 

http://www.blackmagicbrakes.com/
https://www.extremeterrain.com/jeep-wrangler-fluid-capacities.html
http://www.j-barr.com/
https://www.tuffy.com/
https://www.boltlock.com/

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