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theksmith last won the day on July 11

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About theksmith

  • Rank
    Expedition Expert

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  • Rig
    2016 JKUR
  • Location
    Phoenix, AZ

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  1. welcome to the Club! it was great to meet you the FR42 run. looks like we were lucky to do that one when we did because it's closed again "temporarily" due to another fire that was nearby. looking forward to see all your rig upgrades!
  2. Due to popular demand, the 15th annual Dirt Gala will be back at the Cinders! Come spend the weekend camping with us at the O'Leary group site near Sunset Crater in your tent, trailer, or RV. Friday afternoon we'll do a short moderate trail ride into the Cinders OHV area, then on Saturday we'll take an easy trail behind the San Francisco Peaks over to a short hike in the Lava River Caves. Both trail rides are optional - you could also just hang out at camp, go into Flagstaff and play tourist, or explore on your own! Chock full of friends, family, games, prizes, laughter and dirt – there’s fun for everyone! So grab the whole family and join us. Don't be that person hearing about all the awesome stuff you missed for the next whole year! Sign up now! Note: This event is open to everyone, you do NOT need to be a club member to attend. LOCATION The O'Leary Group Site near Sunset Crater & The Cinders OHV area, just outside Flagstaff, AZ. Click here for directions... This is a semi-primitive group campsite with paved access, vault toilets, charcoal grills, tables, and a central shelter. Note that there are NO hookups, however the shelter does have a spigot and an 120v outlet for temporary use (blenders, etc.). Individual spots are NOT reserved within the group area and space is limited. If you have a Travel Trailer or RV, we recommend you get there early to secure a big enough spot! SIGN-UPS / TICKETS Please click here to visit our online store for your virtual 2024 Gala tickets. Just add whatever tickets you need to your cart and then be sure to check-out to complete your purchase with a credit card or Paypal. A camping ticket (Tent, Trailer, or Motorhome) includes admission for you and your immediate family! ONLY if you are NOT camping, then please purchase one "Attending but not camping (1 Adult)" ticket for each adult. Children are free! We'll add you to the attending list once you've purchased your virtual tickets. You must get tickets ahead of time to attend! Please note there are no refunds. This is ORP's annual fundraising event, and the reimbursement money for the campsite is our primary fundraising source. Our paid membership upgrades typically cover only our most basic operating costs and so we rely on this event to help fund the club/site. ITINERARY Friday (9/6) Arrive anytime after 2 PM. Setup your campsite, meet & greet people as they arrive! Optional: Line up rigs at 3:30 PM for the 4x4 moderate rated Cinders OHV area trail ride (must have a 4-low transfer case option & suitable tow points). Bring water and snacks (we may not be back to camp for dinner till around 7 or 8 PM). Dinner (self-prepared). Campfire social time, visit with old friends and get to know the new folks! Saturday (9/7) Optional: Line up rigs at 9 AM for the easy rated trail ride to the Lava River Caves (suitable for any high clearance vehicle). The hike is moderately strenuous over extremely uneven ground in the dark. Be sure to bring 2 light sources, a jacket or sweatshirt, and water for the hike. We'll return to camp by around 1 PM for lunch (self prepared). Late afternoon: The silly yet highly-competitive "Tire Valve Cap" game! 2 person teams, so partner up and practice your balance skills! Annual salsa & dip contest after the game (see below). Dinner time (self-prepared), then head back to the common area for... 50/50 raffle drawing, award prizes, and ORP announcements. More campfire social time! Sunday (9/8) Breakfast (self-prepared) Leisurely break camp, bid friends adieu & head home! Must to be out of group site by 11 AM. Annual Salsa & Dip Contest: Enter your homemade salsa or chip/veggie dip! Keep on ice until Saturday evening. Offroad Passport supplies the chips, but you're welcome to bring more. Everyone come hungry! Enjoy the chips, salsas and dips and VOTE for the winners! Salsa and dip contestants will compete for 1 prize this year. However, you can enter as many salsas/dips as you want! The winner gets to choose a new style ORP shirt! 50/50 Raffle: Back by popular demand is a 50/50 raffle! Tickets on sale Saturday afternoon/evening. 1 winning ticket drawn saturday evening. The winner gets 50% of the ticket sales! (the Club keeps the other half) $5 per ticket, or $20 for five tickets (bring some cash, there is no ATM machine on site) IMPORTANT NOTES This is a family-friendly event! Alcohol at camp is OK but please be responsible and respectful. ABSOLUTELY NO DRINKING & DRIVING! Click here to read ORP's Pet Policy... Please print, sign, and bring a copy of the event waiver with you. Click here for that form... Be sure to bring everything you need for meals including stoves/dishes/etc. HOW YOU CAN HELP! Bring 1 or 2 bundles of firewood for the community campfire. Bring your corn hole or other lawn games to play at camp. ORP swag (shirts, etc.) will be on display and available for purchase at special Gala discount prices! (bring some cash, there is no ATM machine on site) ATTENDING NOTE: Sign-ups are a little different this year, please see above for details! @theksmith & family -- 1 Travel Trailer + Vehicle, 1 Addon Tent, 1 Addon Vehicle @4x4tographer, @Yodamom & family -- 1 Motorhome, 1 Addon Vehicle @Mick Bowers -- 1 Tent + Vehicle @Bradywgn71 & @kaspily -- 1 Motorhome, 1 Addon Vehicle
  3. i've posted before about how satisfied i am with the OEM premium Alpine sound system (ever since i installed an aftermarket head unit anyway). that factory upgraded system consists of a small amplifier, Alpine component speakers front & rear, and a small oval subwoofer in the cargo area floor. my only complaint has been the little sub can't hit extremely low frequencies. there are several songs i like that are just missing certain bass notes - it was time to fix that! project goals improve very low bass response. specifically be able to hear the lowest couple of notes in Skrillex's Summit, C2C's F.U.Y.A., and Kendrick Lamar's Not Like Us not reduce visibility in my rearview mirror. not interfere with overland trips (i.e. not block my sleep platform or take away any essential storage spaces). not break the bank (stay under $500 grand total). i was hoping to be able to leave the new sub in the rig all the time by placing it on my Front Runner cargo shelf. however, as long as it was easily removable before a trip, then that would still meet goal #3. also, i wasn't trying to shake the windows, this was all about hearing the full range at reasonable volumes. initial tests i first tried a few slim 10" active enclosures, including a Sound Stream Labs LOPRO10 and an Alphasonik AS100A. they only made more bass volume, but didn't add the lower frequencies i was looking for. however, these early tests were promising in terms of the cargo shelf working as a mounting location - it didn't seem to have any major rattles even at higher volumes. this is likely because i used to carry my Hi-Lift jack on there and had added additional bracketry to wedge the shelf securely against the roll bar on both sides so it wouldn't sway with all that extra weight. after the disappointing performance of those 10" active subs, i decided that i needed to go up to a 12" sub with a separate amplifier to get any real volume below 40hz. sub/enclosure i've had good results with Pioneer shallow subs in previous vehicles so i purchased their 12" TS-A3000LS4. in terms of excursion, it can't compete with a JL Audio or Alpine shallow, but it's also 1/5th the price of those and still has better specs than any of the similarly priced "budget" slim subs (DS18, Rockville, etc.). after a little searching, i found this tiny QPower SHALLOW112 sealed enclosure that seemed like it might fit on the shelf and not block my view. based on conventional wisdom, i did add a small amount of Poly-Fill because the enclosure is slightly smaller that what Pioneer's minimum spec calls for. i actually tried the vented version of that same box first, but there was substantial port noise at higher volumes and i just really prefer the "tight" sound of a sealed box. my first test were done just ratchet-strapping the box to the shelf, but once i was satisfied this was going to work out, i made mounting ears out of 1/2" plywood strips from my scrap pile. then i was able to use M8 bolts in the t-slots of the Front Runner shelf to attach to those. i M8 tie-down rings in place of regular nuts so that the whole contraption is easily removable without tools. plus i now have additional places to attach bungee cords. here's a shot from my perspective looking in the rearview mirror - it worked out perfectly to not block any more visibility than the spare already does. amp space is at a premium in my rig, i've filled nearly every nook and cranny with something already. in fact, if it weren't for my air compressor being mounted under the passenger seat, i would have tried the Alpine JK under-seat 10" subwoofer first. so, i needed a really small amp if i hoped to find somewhere to stick it! it also had to be capable of 400W RMS into 4 Ohms in order to drive the Pioneer 12". i ended up with a tiny Sound Stream Labs RSM1.4000D class D monoblock. it's rated for 600W @ 4 ohms so that gave it plenty of headroom. in my experience these Pioneers can handle a bit more than they are rated at for a short period. therefore i wasn't too concerned about blowing the sub (plus the 600W rating is probably exaggerated a bit). thanks to the Sound Stream's miniscule package (9" x 3.75" x 1.75"), i was able to easily fit it beside the Bestop drawer (thanks @scottL) under my driver seat. wiring i already had 4 gauge power wire running to the compressor under the passenger seat, and had it fused at 100A. i tee'd off that to run power to the amp, and used a factory ground lug under the driver seat for the negative. the Sound Stream's terminals fit the 4AWG easily. the amp is rated at 90A max, and the compressor draws less than 80A - so as long as i don't run the amp at high volume while also airing up, then sharing the same wire and fuse should be fine. a 17ft set of stereo twisted-pair RCA's were run from my Pioneer headunit's sub output to the amp, along with an 18 AWG amp turn-on lead. i used 12 gauge speaker wire, which might be overkill even for this moderately long run. the amp's terminals fit the 12AWG just fine. i had to solder the bare ends of the wire and then flatten them with pliers to get them into the sub enclosure's spring terminals though i sheathed the speaker wire with some PET braided sleeve and ran it inside the front-most t-slot channel of the cargo shelf. tip: i recommend using only "pure copper", often sold as OFC (oxygen-free-copper), or "tinned copper" wiring in a vehicle. copper-clad aluminum (CCA) is cheaper but has less current handling capacity for any given gauge, and will break more easily if flexed over and over again. i took apart the SSL amp's remote level adjuster and wrapped the internals in heat-shrink so i could mount it with a more factory look... this OEM switch module to the left of the steering wheel was mostly empty space, so it was easy to modify it to include the remote level adjuster. dialing it in after some initial tweaking of all the settings, here are some RTA (real time analysis) graphs as the system sits. i may still do a little more tweaking, but I'm pretty happy with it as-is. note these are with EQ set to personal taste (i.e. not trying to hit a flat curve). i used the free REW application and a Dayton Audio IMM-6 calibrated mic with a TRRS extension cable. measurements were taken in the 1/12 octave RTA mode with psychoacoustic smoothing applied. the "Y" axis is uncalibrated SPL. here is the "before" (blue line) compared to the new sub set at 10% on the remote level knob (green). the system previously dropped off fast below 40hz. the new sub hits 26hz at that same SPL and then falls off slower than before. the above graph was with the sub's polarity reversed, as it seemed louder that way when i first installed it. however, after getting all the other settings dialed in, i tried flipping it back to straight polarity and that actually made a big difference at lower levels (below in purple). it widened the new peak SPL range while also improving the performance all the way to the bottom. here's the "before" along with the new sub at 10%, 30% and 100% levels on the remote knob. this is with the gain on the amp and the output level on the head unit set a little conservative as to not likely clip or over-power the sub even if where to crank up the master volume a bit more. conclusion since i already had some of the wire and miscellaneous other materials, this project cost me just under $350. the solution met all my stated goals and i'm very pleased with the overall sound!
  4. Howdy Dan & welcome to the club! I'm running behind on getting the decals & welcome letters sent out, but I am catching up on them this weekend. So look for that in the mail this week! In the meantime, just let us know if you have any other questions about the club/site. - Kristoffer
  5. over the last couple months, Gadget developed a mild shimmy when hitting certain bumps while turning. had tires rotated and balanced to no avail. i was running about 1/16" of toe-in over a 2ft span (whatever degrees that works out to) - so i tried a little more, but that didn't help either. so i tried a little less, a half turn on my Synergy tie-rod adjuster back from my original starting point, and that seemed to do the trick! so, anyone else keep crib notes on their workbench? :)
  6. an early morning stroll in the desert before work
  7. thanks for posting Jack - it looks hot! ;) welcome to the club @WendyW!
  8. that was my first thought when i saw the rotor - however the caliper seemed to float ok, it moved on the slide pins freely. also, compressing the actual pistons to make room for the new pads required the same force on both driver and passenger side (using a c-clamp). the only other thing i could think was that a clip got loose and was somehow wedged in there. by the time i took it apart, it was missing one clip and one was severly mangled - but obviously the pad had traveled further than it was ever designed to at that point. i'll check them often over the next little bit and see if there is any indication of that side starting to wear faster again. i guess i could check temps on both sides after driving a bit and see if that side is getting hotter (i.e. dragging). as far as i know the rotors in this big brake kit are custom and only available from Teraflex. it was $160 with tax & shipping.
  9. so i pulled a bonehead move - i didn't check my brake pads often enough (they don't have squealers) and destroyed the front passenger rotor! interestingly, the driver side still had quite a bit of pad left. Teraflex said that meant i didn't have them bled well enough. i.e. there was still air in the driver side somewhere preventing it from pressing as hard and therefore it didn't wear out as fast. this morning i replaced that rotor and all the front pads. then bled everything normally, followed by the ABS bleed procedure multiple times (using the OBDJscan app), then did a regular bleed a few more times. hopefully i got all the air out this time. also, FYI, the front pads for the Teraflex Big Brake kit are the same as a 2006-2010 Dakota or Ram 1500. i ended up getting Bosch pads next day on Amazon Prime because the Teraflex ones were going to take till next week (not to mention the TF are 3 times the cost). i was not able to find any brand with squealers for this application!
  10. this morning we changed the idler & tensioner pulleys and replaced the serpentine belt. no-name Jeep has 99k miles on her currently.
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