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July 2010 Letters

Hybrid Hummer H3
Posted July 1, 2010

Wheelers Recession Woes, Truck Comparisons, & More!

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 Due to the volume of mail, electronic and otherwise, we cannot respond to every reader, but we do read everything.

Recession-Era Wheeling: Good Times, Bad Times & a Little of Both
Read your May 2010 issue tonight. In Limited Articulation, you asked about the economic state of our wheeling. Well, dire straits, I'm afraid. My job as a press operator for a fab shop will be gone in October, and I'm down to 30 hours a week. No jobs in the area since my plant started layoffs and we went from 1,800 people down to 200. House payment, wife, three kids (one in college) and a grandson, van payment, blah, blah, blah, blue-collar drama. Most of my friends still wheel, but I'm sittin' out for now. Yeah, I suck, but I'm a great fabricator, an okay wrench monkey-and a broke-ass factory worker.

I have plans on swapping in the small-block 350, 14-bolt rear, and auto trans into my 1990 Wrangler as soon as I can find a better job or win the lottery. I figure that including the rebuilding junkyard parts and buying what I don't already have will cost about three grand to get all but the axles and suspension done. No garage and only my hand tools, fab skills, and a old AC stick welder-kinda inhibits building on the scale I would like if I had the means. But I'll bounce back.

For now, I'm stuck reading about wheeling instead of doing it-though my Jeep would look killer broke down with a Four Wheeler plate on the custom front bumper I made at my last job. Anyway, ya mag rocks-keep up the good work, and I'll see ya on the trail ASAP.
Mike Garland
Conway, AR

I just read your May '10 editorial. I'm also getting ready to head out to Moab for Eater Jeep Safari. You asked how the recession has affected our wheelin' plans. Well, my wife lost her job on January 1, so to pay for my Moab trip I am working one of my vacation weeks for Moab cash. In years past, I would have cancelled the trip, but my friend Scott and I have been bustin' butt to finish my rock buggy for Easter Jeep. So if you see a Tacoma-skinned buggy with a retro Ivan Stewart paint job going down Main Street, flag us down and we'll tell you what other sacrifices we made for this long overdue trip.

P.S. We have no idea who that Doug Evans character is that was ranting in your Letters section. Send us a "chill pill," and we'll look for him, then gladly administer it.
Paul Chowanec
Colorado Springs, CO

We'll keep an eye out for that Tacoma buggy at Moab, and we'll look for that Wrangler there next year if not sooner. And we'll know you when we see you since you'll both be sporting the FW stickers we're sending out to each of you (along with some other stuff, too). Thanks for writing in, and here's hoping the next year finds us all living in better happier financial times.

New Truck Tests: Nobody's Perfect
I would like to respond to some of the recent comments concerning truck comparisons. I for one enjoy reading your comparisons and the test drive section. I would much rather read about comparing Chevy versus Dodge trucks from writers who actually make a living with 4x4s and trucks than from car magazine guys who are more educated concerning cars.

I've been a longtime subscriber and actually enjoy reading all the articles, photographs, and learning about the writers who contribute them. From Willie Worthy's helpful hints with answering questions, to the shows that are covered, I can't think of any other magazine that covers such a wide array of topics as Four Wheeler does. There have been articles that held no interest for me, but I read them anyway, if not for anything else but a learning experience.

Nothing in life is perfect-people have to realize that what they may like, someone else may dislike, and you can't blame them for that.
Gary Heppner
Schuylkill Haven, PA

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