Where To Write
Address your correspondence to: Four Wheeler, 831 S. Douglas St., El Segundo, CA 90245. All letters become the property of Four Wheeler, and we reserve the right to edit them for length, accuracy, and clarity. The editorial department can also be reached through the website at www.fourwheeler.com. Due to the volume of mail, electronic and otherwise, we cannot respond to every reader, but we do read everything.
If It's Time for Top Truck, It's Time to Pummel the Editors
I am very disappointed with the decision to split the Top Truck Challenge up into two groups (April '10). What's next? Are you going to just give everyone a First Place trophy just because they showed up? Remember, to be the best, you have to beat the best!
I'm very disappointed with how the magazine is going all of a sudden. I will have to decide if I will continue to subscribe to your magazine or not.
I'm looking over the April '10 issue today. It's a good idea for separate Top Truck and Buggy categories for Top Truck Challenge. However, I counted only nine buggies with two possible others. (These two entrants were not described as buggies by FW.) On your tech list, maybe you could add a line for frame construction. With a ratio of approximately 1:4 (buggies to trucks), that is how I will vote. If the TTC finalists were determined in this manner, a truck might win overall.
Oakland Park, FL
I would like some information on the rules and regulations of building a Top Truck Challenge vehicle.
For Top Truck, we try to keep the rules to a minimum to encourage creativity, though there are a few basic requirements that we insist upon. Your vehicle needs to have a full rollcage, a winch, at least one locking differential (preferably both), and have accessible recovery points (i.e., towhooks) at both ends of the vehicle. You need to wear a DOT-approved helmet and seatbelts/harness at all times while you are in your vehicle, and you need to have a working fire extinguisher onboard your rig. Front lift blocks are not allowed, and rebar steering is strictly verboten. Other than that, you're pretty much left to your own devices.
About the truck/buggy breakdown, we are at the mercy of our readers to provide us with suitable candidates for the competition. We're trying out two separate classes this year as an experiment, primarily because so many of our readers asked for it. If it doesn't work out as well as we'd like, we can always revert to the old format. Nothing's written in stone around here.
Motor vs. Engine: Which Is Which
Regarding your "Techline" letter, "Engine vs. Motor" (Feb. '10): I've been enjoying your magazine above all others for 32 years. Your articles and contributing editors are second to none. However, I may be able to educate you. Ninety-nine percent of the "motor name" examples you listed were for advertisement or slang.
Motor: An electrical device that is used to convert electrical energy into mechanical motion. Basic to the understanding of all "motors" is the reaction between a fixed magnetic field and a current carrying conductor in that field.
Engine: A mechanical device that is used for converting mechanical energy into mechanical motion.
Now you know that the device under the hood is called an engine. So, do I get a T-shirt?
We guess. But doesn't this mean we gotta swap out the diesel engine in our "motorhome" for an electric motor instead?