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Everything posted by theksmith

  1. this weekend i worked on installing a pair of Teraflex Heavy Duty Rear Falcon Brackets/Skids. i previously had some EVO weld on control-arm skids that were hacked up to fit the lighter duty Falcon bolt-on skids. the new HD brackets can be installed at factory height or 2 higher positions, and this was the main reason for the switch... after getting my bump-stops dialed in for 37's and to keep the rear pinion out of my gas tank skid, i ended up with some unused up-travel on the rear shocks. raising the axle mounting points will give me a little more ground clearance and allow full use of the available travel (increase droop). turns out this was a crappy job lying on the garage floor under the rig with a grinder in my face! i needed to cut off all the existing shock and sway bar bracketry and shorten up the control arm mount as well. because of the limited space to work you i was shooting sparks right back at my head most of the time. a plasma cutter would have made this much faster and easier. here's the removed bolt-on skids and some of the metal that had to be cut-off: i got them installed good enough for a clearance test, but still have some work to do, including welding in place for long term abuse. using the second possible install position moves everything up nearly an inch. i did a hard hard romp run with the zip-tie test in place and confirmed the new location doesn't bottom out my shocks... i actually still have about a half inch of available travel at full bump-stop compression. that's not quite enough to move the brackets up to the next higher position though. i still need to do some cutting/shaping on the factory control arm brackets. these new ones have an integrated skid that is supposed to wrap upwards at the front (the need to still be bent along that cut-out line you see). even though they increased clearance underneath, these stick in towards the center of the Jeep way further than required. i'm going to cut them off at the red line and then weld back in a vertical support to help reduce their "land anchor" status. hopefully i'll have time to finish this project later in the week...
  2. we ran across a deal for a rando chinese brand engine/tranny skid for $95 on Amazon last week. it looks just like the $200 Smittybilt one, and is surprisingly fairly beefy - should be fine for moderate trails. B installed it this afternoon and i only heard a couple curse words coming from the garage!
  3. Welcome to the site Mac, and thank you for all the good info! FYI, this was just our initial interest check thread - the actual trip thread is over here: https://offroadpassport.com/forums/topic/6152-club-829-9122-dusy-ershim-rock-crawling-expedition-near-shaver-lake-ca-extreme-4x4-dispersed-tent-camping/
  4. working on raising the rear shock mounts, under the Jeep all day with a grinder - no fun!
  5. you'd have to take out a second mortgage to afford anything made by Snow Peak beyond their titanium spork!
  6. STELLAR report Ryan - thanks for documenting so much of it for those of us that didn't want to brave the crowds! did you buy anything? i know some of those "show specials" are pretty hard to pass up...
  7. even still, nice job on the harness simplification! the older electronics in those rigs are always acting up (corroded connectors, internal wire breaks but where the insulation stays intact, cracked solder joints on PCBs, etc.) - so having the harness simplified to only what is still in use will make troubleshooting any issues much easier when they creep up.
  8. nice find - those go for over $60 on Amazon, and usually the small ones like that are more than the standard 20lb ones when you can find them!
  9. yes! i'd lead that one again if it's still open. i need to pre-run - not sure how bad the trail has gotten washed out since the fire.
  10. i hear there are a few really tight spots, so it will be good that i'm narrowing them a little too!
  11. since even the dual 1lb bottle adapter didn't really cut-it for a whole night of fires in cool weather, i purchased an 11lb propane tank. it seems like a great compromise size that should power decently large/long campfires for 3 or 4 nights and still be able to run a stove or grill a bit too - all while fitting in the Jeep much better than a standard 20lb cylinder. i don't have a dedicated home for it yet, but PowerTank does make a mounting bracket that works with it, so once i figure out where to mount one... i also picked up a 4ft adapter hose to hook the tank to things like stoves and heaters that typically run on the little 1lb green bottles.
  12. ordered some steel to fix/re-engineer my sliders
  13. the OP in this thread was from 2013... and today i finally saw a tweel in the wild! the bulk trash pickup front-end-loader cruising down my street:
  14. all of those aluminum hard lines turn back into rubber hoses near the back of the engine, and they just have typical constant-tension hose clamps holding those on. there is a slight pucker/barb at the end of each hard line. i just unhooked the existing rubber hose and then re-joined to it with a double barbed connector.
  15. bringing this old thread back from the past since it's fire-ban season - i updated the first post with a couple newer options for propane campfires.
  16. i'd like to run Terminator, or Predator, etc. as a real night run - like meetup at 8pm.
  17. i stick to night runs and higher elevations for the next few months because of the heat, will probably lead a night one soon myself. i'd be interested in running Smiley Rock bottom-to-top again, it's been a few years.
  18. you should change the pin-up girl to be about 2 ft tall and right on top center of the hood!
  19. well this change did seem to get the water warming up faster on a cold start. this morning the ambient temp was about 75* and the Jeep said coolant temp was 87* on startup. i filled the fresh water tank with filtered hose water (which was slightly cooler than ambient). the Jeep itself warmed up to 160* in about 5 minutes and at that point it would heat the fresh water to a tolerable lukewarm feel. before this plumbing change, the fresh water would not really heat up much at all until the Jeep hit around 190* or more - and it usually requires driving around a little to get it up to that temp.
  20. i had mentioned before about the Jeep needing to get up to full operating temperature before the fresh water would get hot enough for a shower, which is very slow to happen if just sitting at idle (i.e. a morning shower after the Jeep's cooled down overnight)... Joe at On Point Performance let me know that coolant isn't even really flowing much through the heater core until the thermostat opens up fully. he suggested i move the heat exchanger from being in-line with the heater core to in-line with the oil cooler, which does flow coolant even before the thermostat opens. it's the hard line that T's back into the heater core return line here in the middle: for some reason Jeep decided that the soft line attached to that one should be 3/4" instead of 5/8" like the rest of them, so this turned into a minor project. but after a trip to Autozone and O'Reillys, the change is done! i still need to test it after the Jeep sits all night and is completely "cold" to see if it really starts to heat the fresh water before the rig gets up to full temp.
  21. glad you made it out safely, that could have ended much worse!
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