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Off-Road Unloaded - Letters To The Editor - March 2011

1977 Gmc Truck
Posted March 1, 2011

Letters To The Editor

Letter Of The Month
This issue our Letter-of-the-Month writer is getting a pair of Lockstraps ( from Lockstraps. These are really nice because they not only help you cinch down the load in your truck bed, they keep it safe while you're in a store or restaurant while on the road. Carabiner locks deter would-be thieves from an easy haul, and ensure that your stuff will be there when you get back to your truck.

A Gesture Of Kindness
In the October 2010 issue, there was a kid named Jacob Sanders who, with his dad, picked up all those tires out of the boonies, just because. I was very moved by a few things, one of which is that the dad needs a good handshake and a cold beer for instilling these kinds of values in his son-the same kid who's disciplined enough to be saving up for school and forgoing things like magazine subscriptions. We need more fathers and sons like them all over this country, and God bless those [who] are already here. I work in several areas of law enforcement on the East Coast, and I see so little of that. Which brings me to the purpose of this communication: I want to buy a year's subscription of the mag for this kid and his dad. They deserve to know that what they did means something, and the boy needs to know that sometimes simple actions bring rewards unexpectedly, and from unexpected places. That goodness and kindness doesn't always have to be one-sided (shame on those tire places that wouldn't at least try to help out).
From a tried, mostly true, and always faithful dirty-knuckled dreamer,
M. Holler

Mr. Holler, that was a very nice gesture, and I know that Jacob appreciates it, because I've already contacted him and read his thankful response. Without a doubt your kind gesture makes yours our Letter of the Month, and you'll be receiving a pair of Lockstraps to keep valuables in your truck bed safe.

We Didn't Crash!
My name is Lisa Cassel, and my husband Shawn and I own a four-door F-150 Supercrew. Our truck was shown in the January 2011 issue in a story about the Pismo Huckfest. There is a photo of our truck in the air, and right next to the photo there is another photo of a wrecked Supercrew with a caption that says, "Bad Day at the Dunes." Because those two photos are right next to each other, it looks as if our truck was the one that got obliterated. Not the case. Our truck is as awesome as ever!
Thanks much!
Lisa Cassel
WFO Offroad

Stupid Freakin' Video Screens!
Okay, this is sort of random, but your mag is the only one I read, so you've got the only place for me to really vent. And I need to tell someone about how dumb those video screens over the fuel pumps at gas stations are. They are really obnoxious, and usually turned up so loudly that they hurt your ears.

I understand that the gasoline companies put these video screens in because it's just another way of making more revenue with in-your-face advertising, but I think it might be backfiring-at least with consumers like me. I drive a lot, and in an SUV that uses more fuel than I'd like it to. About a year ago, I started making notes of certain gas stations with video screens in them. I make it a point to avoid these stations from now on, and instead enjoy pumping my fuel at more "antiquated" gas stations that have only everything I need (and no stupid video screens blaring at me).

I realize I am only one individual, but I hope there are others out there like me [who] care enough to protest (even silently) these types of 21st-Century annoyances, and together our actions can be noticed.
Jimmy Dell

Jimmy, I have to say that I am 100 percent with you on this one. I go so far as to pull out of a fueling station and find another if I pull up and notice a video screen before I start pumping.

Ways To Better Fuel Economy
I was writing to comment on Matt from Gayville, South Dakota's letter in November 2010, asking for better fuel economy from his '77 GMC. There are a few things I'd recommend for him.

I had a '78 Chevy K-10 with a carbureted 350 and full-time 4WD. The most obvious suggestion is to lower the truck and maybe run 31s or 33s. Those are big enough for a lot of obstacles. Use better spark plugs and wires, too. Go to a smaller carb and use an aluminum intake manifold. The stock Rochester Quadrajet is 750 cfm. If you have a 350, I'd suggest a 600 to 670 carb. Convert from the mechanical fan to an electrical fan. Also, use synthetic fluids.

If you don't see any fuel-economy gains with these, it will at least help the engine run at maximum efficiency. Also, headers and dual exhaust would help, and make sure the tires are inflated properly. And check that your ignition timing is correct. For a 350, I believe it's 8 to 10 degrees before top dead center (TDC). Hope this helps. I enclosed a picture of my truck with my mom and niece standing in front of it. Thank you.
William Roye
Royal Oak, MI

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