Need 12-Volt Gas Power
Help! I've been trying to locate the article, through libraries and friends who've subscribed for years, about combining a GM alternator with a small gas-powered engine. I need the poor man's 12-volt power supply.
The name of the story was "Happy Camping," which appeared in the January 1994 issue. To obtain a copy, send your request, $3 per story (check or money order), and an S.A.S.E. to Four Wheeler Reprints, 3330 Ocean Park Blvd., Suite 115, Santa Monica, CA 90405.
More Fitment Requests
Dear Four Wheeler,
I recently purchased a '97 Ford F-150. In your June '97 Tire Fitment Chart ("What Hits, What Fits"), you state that 34-inch tires will fit if I have 17-inch wheels. I have 16-inch rims and was wondering if I can put a 305/70R16 Goodyear Wrangler A/T on my truck without rubbing? Do I need to buy an 8-inch-wide rim to replace my stock 7-inch rims? Simply put, what is the largest possible tire I can put on my F-150?
Overland Park, KS
Brian Koster of Mickey Thompson Performance Tires says the 305 tire you describe is about one size too large. He says they've put a set of 285/75R16 tires on a new F-150 with good results. Brian also recommends moving to a wider-than-stock-7-inch wheel for any tread over 10 inches in width, but it all depends on how much sidewall bulge you want and need. Rock crawlers like to keep wheel flanges as protected as possible with a tread wider than the rim. Mud runners typically don't have that concern. Other considerations center around backspacing and wheel offset. For more on that, turn to page 112.
Better Drivetrain Tricks
After reading the February '98 "Cheap Tricks," I became concerned. Patrick Sydlik has a good idea using blocks to remove a transmission or transfer case, but I'm a mason by trade. Concrete blocks are not structurally sound, and someone could get seriously hurt. I would suggest using wooden blocks or jackstands. If concrete blocks must be used, always place them open-side down, with a weight-distributing medium (like heavy-duty plywood) between them.
Land closures have finally affected me and many other enthusiasts in my area. As you may know, over 90 percent of the land in Texas is privately owned. However, there was an oil company that was willing to allow access to a dune area, great for buggies, motorcycles, and 4x4s. Now this land is closed-not because of some governmental law or advocacy group, but because some stupid individuals destroyed some of the oil company's high-dollar equipment. Because of the behavior of a few, the rest of us can no longer enjoy the area. Also, this has blackened the name of all the four wheelers in the area.
Those of us who really love the trails and other areas we use-be it for 4x4s, fishing, hunting, or whatever-need to band together and take care of what little we have left by being responsible users. Anytime we see someone else abusing privileges, especially if they're destroying property, we need to take action-maybe we can speak to them about responsible driving. Of course, maybe a simple report to the proper authorities, giving all pertinent information, could be the way to go as well.
The question that comes up is exactly how to report abusers. The general rule is it's best to get a license number first, which you can always supply to the proper authorities. On minor transgressions that are a product of simple ignorance, if you can handle the situation by approaching in a friendly way, sometimes that can work just as well.
What A Surprise!
Dear Four Wheeler,
Wow! What a surprise. While channel surfing, looking for something on The Learning Channel or Discovery that had 4x4s in it (I own an '85 Toyota Land Cruiser, so shows like Animal Planet that are filmed in Australia have lots of them), I stumbled across ESPN2 and found this cool show: Four Wheeler TV. I recorded it and I'm showing it to all my buddies. I look forward to seeing your show time and time again.
David Leveille, Jr.
via the Internet