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-   -   I took my turd off-roading!!! (http://www.ifsja.org/forums/vb/showthread.php?t=189626)

rang-a-stang 02-14-2021 01:44 PM

I took my turd off-roading!!!
 
I have had my Jeep for just over 5 years now. Those five years can be broken into a few chunks of time:
1) Bought what shoulda been a parts Jeep, spent way too much time and money getting it running and through smog so I could register it in CA. ~1 year
2) Struggled to keep it on the road and spent way to much time and money on it, hardly drove it because it was always broken/leaking. ~1 year
3) Got it through smog a second time and then tore it apart and spent WAAAAAY too much time and money getting the engine rebuilt, swapped out a bent chassis, added EFI, limped it back onto the road to let my son drive it and damage it while it became a huge burden on me. Got it through smog a 3rd time. ~2 years.
4) The last 5 months. Re-rebuilt my engine again. Spent way too much time and money again to get oil pressure sufficient, get the EFI to work correctly, and some other odds and ends.

With all that said, I went off-roading once before this. I talked about it here:
My first off-roading trip
It was awesome. Then I went again yesterday. Went with the same dude but he brought his F250


Day started with loading tools, parts, and spare fluids.
lessons learned:
1) a stock FSJ SUV (at least mine) has no places to tie down your crap. They need pad eyes or something in the trunk

We met for coffee at 7am in Camarillo and headed up to Fillmore CA. There is a dry river bed where we could bomb around in some soft sand and shallow creeks. I refilled my gas tank and calculated 10.9MPG out of the last tank! YESSSS!! I was hoping for at least 10MPG. ANNNND my tires are about 7% taller than stock so that calculates to 11.6mpg! In that tank, I drove pretty aggressive so I could get good data for my EFI tune and oil pressure. I am hoping it is a consistent 11'ish after this.

We pulled off the road in Fillmore/Lake Pyru area and got out to lock hubs and shift into 4wd. I turned my QT switch....nothing.
Lesson learned:
2) You should test out things like this a few days before you go.
There was no vacuum signal at my shift motor. I used my hand vacuum pump, laid under my truck, and was able to shift my case into 4wd. After applying 20" of mercury, my custom 4wd light went on on my dash! Woooo hooo! That is the first time I have seen that light light up since 2018.

As I was laying down there trying to get into 4WD, Ventura county Sheriff came along and very politely asked us to leave. He said it was private land and we could not go nuts down there.

We hit the road again looking for another place to pull into the river bottom. No luck. We decided to hit an area my buddy knew about in Thousand Oaks. it was a guaranteed place to play but it was about 20 miles from where we were.

Cruising there was GREAT! It was about 70 degrees and sunny. We cruised 75mph on the freeway and my truck ran awesome. I also mentioned once before about the 101 grade (here). My truck cruised up the grade again and went from cold to normal temp but not hot, stayed in third gear, about 1/3 throttle the whole way and no downshifting.

Got to our spot and pulled off the road.
Lesson learned:
3) When the lowest part of the back of your truck is plastic, it is going to brake off.
The entry to this area has about a 4 foot tall burm. I went up, then down, drug my hitch and broke my cute little 3rd brake light off the receiver. Again. Did that last time I went off roading, too. :rolleyes:

It was AWESOME out there! We played here for about 2 hours. Climbing hills, exploring, etc. I spent the whole time in 4-low. I have talked about how loud and obnoxious my exhaust can be. Off road it sounds EPIC. I will not be changing it. It sounds like the beginning of Dirt Every Day extra right before they pull the logo off the screen.

I was AMAZED at how many places my truck would go. I was amazed at what I could climb with 2 open diffs.


My buddy took some videos for me, too. Of course, the videos never look like what it was really like, but couple here:
Climbing
Crossing

Then on this relatively mundane climb:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yDS...ew?usp=sharing
Second attempt:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1KEU...ew?usp=sharing
If you watch that second video, through gap between the front fender, wheel and ground at about 9 seconds you see this happen:


We played around for a little while longer but in 2WD before hitting the road home. Here is the only other "Casualty"

That's a chunk of rusty flare. My passenger rear tire rubs on it's flare at full compression too, but that's because the flare is munched. I'll fit it later.

Made it home by 11:30.

I put about 100 miles on my truck yesterday and it performed like a BEAST!!! It was soooooooo fun! The only true "casualties" were my front drive shaft and my receiver brake light. Next weekend I am going to drive it to my brothers house (about 90 minutes from here, via the 405 South which is guaranteed to be trafficky).

Now to circle back to the beginning of this post:
Time chunks 1-3 have pretty much sucked. Way to much money spent, way to much time spent, with almost no return. Time chunk 4 has been pretty fun because I have been able to just wrench when I want doing what I want. I feel re-charged!

Tripwire 02-14-2021 03:41 PM

nice pics - thanks for the story.... i might have the shaft if you need one - PM me

steve:drivin:








m

oregonphil 02-14-2021 06:13 PM

Yep, fun can be expensive! Never could afford that kind...
Were in T.O. did you do that? We use to live down that area, Graduated T.O. high school back in 1968. Drove that Conejo (7%) Grade every day to work to Ventura and back, in my '57 VW van. Lived in El Rio and Ventura also.
Hope you get it fixed up soon.

johnsonic 02-14-2021 06:36 PM

Looks so fun!!!

cu4whln 02-14-2021 07:38 PM

CPONGRATS on a FUN Day !! :thumbsup:

Minor shakedown down issues.. kinda normal for any Jeep really . . .:rolleyes:

78 WIDETRAC 02-14-2021 09:53 PM

Rang, Your Jeep sounds really great too! And your Buddy sounded pretty pumped for you when you were coming up the hill.


Great to see some videos of you enjoying the Jeep. Yeah if you look an listen for it you can see and hear that broken shaft.

Full Size Jeeper 02-14-2021 10:03 PM

That climb video with the guys yelling, that looked fun.

Waggymcgee 02-15-2021 01:46 AM

Awesome! What a gratifying day after putting in so much work. Love the pictures.

Heep-J4000 02-15-2021 07:43 AM

Driving your jeep off road looks very good!
Sadly for busting the front driveshaft , but that comes with playing off road and is a bit of a jeep thing!

The jeep sounds really good when you step on the throttle!:thumbsup:

iapexl8r 02-15-2021 09:08 AM

Looks like a good time, nice to see your jeep out in the dirt.
Do you have the overdriven Quadra trac ?
Also what do you think caused the untimely departure of the front drive shaft?

rang-a-stang 02-15-2021 04:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tripwire
nice pics - thanks for the story.... i might have the shaft if you need one - PM me
steve:drivin:

Nah, I'll send this one back to J20 Project and have him re-pipe it (if that is the right word?). The front yoke is a long travel yoke and the Cardan joint was rebuilt just before I re-installed it so it has about....oh... maybe 75 miles on it! hahaha!
Quote:

Originally Posted by oregonphil
Yep, fun can be expensive! Never could afford that kind...
Were in T.O. did you do that? We use to live down that area, Graduated T.O. high school back in 1968. Drove that Conejo (7%) Grade every day to work to Ventura and back, in my '57 VW van. Lived in El Rio and Ventura also.
Hope you get it fixed up soon.

Awesome! I am in your stomping grounds! This was up kinda by AmGen and Conejo Adventist Elementary school. If you left here in last 20 years, this was all probably undeveloped at the time. It's a little off Wendy Drive.
Quote:

Originally Posted by johnsonic
Looks so fun!!!

About a year ago, you sent me text of a road trip you your woman did in your rig, to southern Oregon and I was SOOOoooo jealous! I love the idea of just cruising like that!
Quote:

Originally Posted by cu4whln
CONGRATS on a FUN Day !! :thumbsup:

Minor shakedown down issues.. kinda normal for any Jeep really . . .:rolleyes:

For sure! Driveshaft is minor inconvenience in the grand scheme of things.
Quote:

Originally Posted by 78 WIDETRAC
Rang, Your Jeep sounds really great too! And your Buddy sounded pretty pumped for you when you were coming up the hill.

Great to see some videos of you enjoying the Jeep. Yeah if you look an listen for it you can see and hear that broken shaft.

Hahaha! He's a retired SeaBee and amazing fabricator. Yep, I heard it "tang" in the video when it broke.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Full Size Jeeper
That climb video with the guys yelling, that looked fun.

That hill is soooo much steeper then it looks in that video! When he says "you gotta burn them tires!" My front tires were sliding back and forth on a rock and smoke was coming off! It was pretty intense! Makes all the frustration of being in the "doing it twice" club a little worth it! :lol:
Quote:

Originally Posted by Waggymcgee
Awesome! What a gratifying day after putting in so much work. Love the pictures.

For sure! I need this day. Thanks!
Quote:

Originally Posted by Heep-J4000
Driving your jeep off road looks very good!
Sadly for busting the front driveshaft , but that comes with playing off road and is a bit of a jeep thing!

The jeep sounds really good when you step on the throttle!:thumbsup:

Totally is a jeep thing! It should be fairly cheap fix and does not park my truck in the garage for months on end. I'll take it!
Quote:

Originally Posted by iapexl8r
Looks like a good time, nice to see your jeep out in the dirt.
Do you have the overdriven Quadra trac ?
Also what do you think caused the untimely departure of the front drive shaft?

I do not have the over driven track. I think when I came down on that hill, the weight of the truck landed on that shaft and bent it, then I gave it some beans and twisted it off.

mwood65 02-15-2021 05:55 PM

Turd?
 
If yours is a turd I hate so hear what ya would call mine. :)


Although I must say I actually have tread on my tires...:D

Wagoneer Taylor 02-16-2021 11:13 AM

Awesome stuff Rang!

So happy to see the smile on your face the whole time!

fulsizjeep 02-18-2021 08:53 AM

That looks fun and just a bit crazy. :cool: I approve.

At least the shaft didn't smack the tranny. Right?

rang-a-stang 02-18-2021 12:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mwood65
If yours is a turd I hate so hear what ya would call mine. :)

Although I must say I actually have tread on my tires...:D

You drive yours ALL THE TIME!!! You tow with it, you are looking to plow with it. I am excited when I put 20 miles on mine and don't find a new part that is broken, leaking, needing replacing, or missing! Mine might be a little prettier but it's COMPLETELY unreliable (a turd). Yours is a workhorse!

hahaha! yes! My tires are not only almost bald, but they are 17 years old and dry rotting on the sides. Buuuuut they were $125 for all 4 of them installed so I am good with them for now.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wagoneer Taylor
Awesome stuff Rang!

So happy to see the smile on your face the whole time!

Yes sir! It was a lot of :drivin: and :fsj: . something me and my Jeep are not used to doing together.
Quote:

Originally Posted by fulsizjeep
That looks fun and just a bit crazy. :cool: I approve.

At least the shaft didn't smack the tranny. Right?

Awesome! I am pretty sure it did not smack the trans. It snapped right at the double cardan, which is just barely forward of my Y pipe so the shaft just fell and the double cardan (as far as I know) is just resting in my Y pipe. I hope to remove the double cardan today and stick it on the shelf until I get home from my business trip in May.

J20 project 02-18-2021 03:47 PM

What are the odds that you can get it to Monrovia by next thursday?...My bro in law is coming up..

J20 project\

J20 project 02-18-2021 03:50 PM

Still rolling the th400??


J20

mwood65 02-19-2021 12:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rang-a-stang
You drive yours ALL THE TIME!!! You tow with it, you are looking to plow with it. I am excited when I put 20 miles on mine and don't find a new part that is broken, leaking, needing replacing, or missing! Mine might be a little prettier but it's COMPLETELY unreliable (a turd). Yours is a workhorse!

hahaha! yes! My tires are not only almost bald, but they are 17 years old and dry rotting on the sides. Buuuuut they were $125 for all 4 of them installed so I am good with them for now.






That's true, my wife's timing chain broke on her vehicle so the Cherokee has been my daily driver for awhile now and before that it was just driven 2-3 days a week to keep everything charged and so on.


It's strange how so many people talk about their FSJ being a money pit or unreliable but this thing starts EVERY time, all the time and can be driven whenever ya want. Probably the most reliable vehicle I have owned in my 40 years of driving (since I was 15).
I am super happy with it's reliability and just wished it looked better.. Bodywork (if that's what ya wanna call it) will be finished soon and paint this summer. (soon as I figure out what the original color was. fairway green I think?)
I am running used tires bought a few years ago from one of the Mexican run tire stores in Phoenix. General Grabber ATX tires, I can't recommend enough. very good on road, GREAT in snow and great off-road.

rocklaurence 02-19-2021 11:50 AM

Do you think the DS was binding or just a bad weld at the CV?

jeepman42 02-19-2021 08:35 PM

Have looked at pics of your rebuild on your Cherokee & think it was a good idea to change out the frame & other parts before taking your recent fun trip. I'm impressed with your build skills!


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