Reader: I have a '65 International Scout. It originally came with the 152ci I-4, T-90 transmission, Spicer 18 transfer case, and Dana 27 axles. I am replacing most of these with bigger, heartier parts such as a Bow Tie 350, a Ford NP435, and high-pinion Dana 60s. I am strongly considering keeping the Spicer 18 transfer case. I have not been told anything that would be considered a "word to the wise" about this transfer case with the combination I have listed above. So is this combination really as good as I am hoping it is, or can you shed some information on things to be aware of?
Editor: The Spicer 18 is a terrific little 'case; it's still fairly abundant, it's relatively cheap to maintain, and easy to rebuild. It was also designed to work behind low-powered four-cylinder engines. Your Scout's original motor was rated at 93 hp (boy, we'd better be right on the money about this, or we'll never hear the end of it), and your new Chevy V-8 is rated to produce ... a lot more than that, we'd reckon. It's not that the 18 couldn't hold up to the added power-particularly if your Chevy engine is a Gen 1 model and you don't plan on modifying it- but if your V-8 is a newer model and/or you intend to treat it to a lot of aftermarket hop-ups, you'd likely be better served by swapping in a somewhat stouter box like a Dana 300 or a Dana 20.
Reader: I noticed in my January issue that the Four Wheeler of the Year test is coming next month. Let me be this first to say "You all should be ashamed of yourselves!!" While I have not yet read the test results, or know who wins, I am sure it was biased and you were probably paid by the manufacturer to place their 4x4 number one. How could you have possibly picked the [insert winner name here] as the best 4x4? Come on, the [insert inferior 4x4 here] was so much better.It's faulty testing like this that is ruining the economy, driving up gas prices, and causing global warming. That's right-it's all your fault because you were too lazy to do a real test, and opted to take money from Big Government. I have to read this while you and your fat wallets destroy the world. I would cancel my subscription, but then my dog wouldn't have anywhere to crap.
And another thing: Why hasn't my truck ever been featured in your magazine? It shouldn't matter that I've never sent you a picture-you should have heard how cool it was and rushed someone out here to do a full spread on it. And where's my tag, stickers, and t-shirt? You have lost me as a reader, and the only way I would ever renew my subscription is if you would give me Project Teal Brute. But I'm sure that won't happen since you don't care about the working man. Well, I guess you should keep it after all since you're going to need something to give Hitler rides around Hell in.
Editor: OK, OK, we confess-we caused the subprime lending crisis and global warming, and that was only last week. Anyway, we couldn't have written a better letter for an April issue than this, and to show our gratitude, a box of exclusive FW swag is coming your way. Thanks for writing in.