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theksmith last won the day on January 23

theksmith had the most liked content!

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About theksmith

  • Rank
    Expedition Expert

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  • Rig
    2016 JK Unlimited Rubicon
  • Location
    Phoenix, AZ

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  1. Brady and I attended the first Saturday of the annual Barrett Jackson auction/show this year. A high point for both of us was the Dodge Thrill ride where you get to ride in a new Hellcat Challenger or Charger with a professional driver on a short course. They showcase the high performance acceleration and braking - then pitch the back-end out on a few corners. We stood in line an hour for just a few seconds of fun, but it was worth it! We ended up in a Charger and had a former IndyCar racer as our driver. Brady took the font seat and captured this video: The other big deal for B was looking over the Paul Walker collection (he's a big Fast & Furious fan). Here are a few vehicles I thought Offroad Passport members might enjoy seeing... Willys! The window sticker said this was a "Marty McFly re-creation": I desperately wanted one of those as my first vehicle after the Back to the Future movies came out. While I never did end up with a Yota of any sort, I'd take that one in a heartbeat. Continuing with the movies theme, there was a Griswold Family Truckster available: A classic FJ40 in great condition: The General Lee collection: I saw several old 4x4 Chevy trucks and classic Broncos that I'd also be happy to have! I know we have some Dodge Power Wagon fans on this site... I don't really know what this was, but it looked fun! B was excited with this Skittles rainbow collection of Superbirds (he's a Mopar man)! Anyone else go this year and get some photos?
  2. the water tank (part 1) i've been measuring and acquiring parts for this project for quite a while, but only just began to make any real progress on putting it all together. figuring out the fixed water tank was the first step but most of the options i saw at first were discouragingly expensive. i was inspired by Dan's blog on "The Road Chose Me" and knew i wanted to install my tank under the rig as well. i'd already relocated my evap canister, giving me that same empty space to work with between the rear drive-shaft and exhaust. i don't want to modify my exhaust (remove the resonator), so i have slightly less room than Dan ended up with. this article from You Me & The Parks details yet another similar setup. the 7 gallon tank they selected looked to be a perfect size, but the total cost with shipping was going to be over $150. a custom tank shape could get me closer to 12 gallons, but those start at $300 or more. i eventually found a similar sized (but much cheaper) 7 gallon one on Amazon. at under $40 shipped, i was willing to deal with it being slightly taller. it shouldn't hang down any lower than the OEM fuel tank even with a skid plate. 7 gallons isn't much, but it's more than enough for a "Navy shower" and i can always carry additional water cans to refill with if i ever do a really long trip. much larger and i'd want a baffled tank anyway. so here's the tank with fittings installed, the 1-1/4" fill hose, and some 3/8" braided clear tubing which will be used to plumb everything: i still need to fab a custom cradle and skid plate to mount this thing. i do enjoy difficult rock crawling trails at times, so my solution needs to be much beefier than what was in those 2 articles i linked above. there's a design in my head, but i just haven't found the motivation to start a major cutting and welding type project yet. this was my shopping list thus far: Class A Customs 7 Gallon Water Tank T-700 1-1/2" MNPT to 1-1/4" barbed elbow fitting 1/2" MNPT plastic drain valve 1/2 MNPT to 3/8 barbed nylon elbow fittings (5 pack) In-line mesh screen strainer/filter with 3/8" barbed connections 14mm spring band hose clamps (10 pack) (trying these instead of traditional screw type clamps, we'll see how that goes) 3/8" ID Braided Clear Vinyl Tubing (50 feet bulk roll) 1.25" ID RV/Marine water tank fill hose (5 feet)
  3. i've just started setting up an on-board fresh water & hot shower system in my JKU - yes Gadget is slowly becoming a miniature RV! my previous rig had a hot shower setup which only got used a few times but was still a nice luxury. that system just pulled from a portable water container but i learned a few things with that attempt which should help me out this time around. the priority for this new setup is having a fixed-tank and everything mounted so that running water is always quick to access. in fact, the heat exchanger will be the last step after everything else is working. motivation/goals: convenience: on-demand water is just super handy whether you need to wash dishes at camp, or clean your hands after a lunch on the trail. quickly rinsing your feet and flops before crawling into a sleeping bag is nice as well, and a full hot shower after several days of camping can really rejuvenate you and extend the desire to stay out exploring! free up space to carry extra fuel: i currently have 4 gallons of water in an Expedition One Geri container (similar to a Rotopax). it's mounted on my tailgate tire carrier upside down with a gravity fed spigot and works well, but i'd like remove it so i can carry a fuel container there. the new water tank will be under the rig, so an incidental bonus is lowering my center of gravity a bit. (i always carry water but will only sometimes have extra fuel on the back). the plan (components overview): small fixed plastic water tank mounted under the Jeep. RV gravity water inlet to fill the tank from any portable container or a garden hose, etc. 12v "on-demand" (pressure switch controlled) RV style pump easy-to-access permanently mounted pull-out hose and sprayer (eventually) a plate style heat exchanger powered by engine coolant with a thermostatic mixing valve (keeps the hot water temp consistent)
  4. Looking like the bastard love child of a Lamborghini and Ford Raptor SVT, the Laffite G-Tec X-Road is slated to be available by the end of 2020 with an all electric or good-old-fashioned testicle-tickling V8 powertrain. The supercharged LS3 option should deliver 700 HP in a chassis weighing under 2,900 pounds. That sort of power to weight ratio and off-road tire combo makes it sound like this thing exists solely for doing donuts in undeveloped dirt lots! And sure, it starts at over $450,000 - but what's a little coin when you could have a mud-terrain chirping hot mess of street-legal daily driving fun? All hype aside, I can't help but see it as just a more expensive Rally Fighter. More info/photos in this RobbReport article and on Laffite's own site.
  5. i used to have a 4D MagLite that i put a TerraLux LED conversion in. i don't doubt their claim of 1,000 Lumen, but it's $70 (mine was an older 600 Lumen version). however, these days you can get that sort of brightness from a nice rechargeable light for well under $50. @gearhead gave me this Anker Bolder rechargeable which is an awesome general purpose flashlight with adjustable focus and a claimed 900 Lumen output. there's also another version now with double the run-time that's still extremely affordable. my EagleTac G25C2 MKII that i got back in 2014 has been my go-to light for exploring mines and around camp . i have a full review of it here... no doubt those D-cell MagLites still make good weapons though!
  6. welcome, what kind of Wrangler do you have?
  7. This is the Sunflower Mine run re-do (the previous run was canceled due to flooding)! Located off Highway 87 near Mt. Ord., the trail offers a variety of challenges: rock crawling in the creek, steep loose climb out of the creek, narrow and sometimes off-camber shelf roads, and more! The trail is very scenic, as it winds back into a canyon, and offers neat views of the highway and Mt. Ord. Club members: Sign-up & more info here...
  8. i'm going to try and make it up there to run Safelite with you guys, and possibly The Wedges.
  9. Happy Birthday @dzJeepChic
  10. happy birthday @stockjeep Wayne!!!!
  11. Gadget did good on the Elvis run this weekend with no new carnage! trip report here... thanks to Sarah (@kaspily) these great photos, especially this one of Gadget twerking: and thanks to @dzJeepChic for this one too:
  12. glad it's covered at least!
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