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June 2011 In Box - Letters to the Editor

Posted in Features on June 1, 2011
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UA Entry?
I’m a big fan of the Ultimate Adventure and would like information about when the checklist and application forms will be available for UA 2011. I’d like to submit my Jeep. I am currently deployed with the U.S. Navy but scheduled to return before the new year. Any info you can provide is appreciated.
Jon Moreau
Chesapeake, VA

Jon, the entry form is now available at Rules and requirements were described in Mar. ’11, page 75.

Now He likes the Ultimate Adventure
I haven’t been a fan of the Ultimate Adventure for the last few years. In my opinion, many of the participant vehicles have leaned toward pro-built rolling advertisements for various 4x4 shops. Well, after receiving my Nov. ’10 4-Wheel & Off-Road I’m here to repent. I’ve read the entire UA story and the UA crew bios (Nov. and Dec. ’10) at least three times, and I’m not through. The 2010 UA was the best ever. The entire group of rigs, drivers, and co-drivers participating this year could easily be encountered on any serious trail in the country. Even the CJ-17 is a very capable yet real-world rig that any competent enthusiast could put together. My compliments to Mr. Pw and everyone who participated this year. I’m looking forward to the 2011 UA!
Randy Raber
Hanford, CA

Thanks, Randy. That is what we strive for: real-world wheelers, not wallet-job rolling ads!

He Isn’t a Fan of UA
Big tires + big engines = closed trails. It sells magazines. It keeps advertisers happy. Keep up the good work and all the trails will be closed. The only readers who care about it are the two or three invited each year.
Al Grosenheider
Via email
P.S. The UA sucks.

Well, Al, is a 35-inch tire really big? How about a Toyota four-cylinder engine? Too big? What about the fact that we usually go to private parks on the Ultimate Adventure so public trails are not impacted? This is what the UA is about, but if you want to read more into it, it’s your grumpy world.

What if we invited you? Would you care then? Come on, Al, don’t be a grumpy old guy! Get out and wheel your two-cylinder 4x4 with 29-inch tires. I bet it will still be fun! In fact, invite us and we’ll bring the same type of ride!

No Pampers Rant?
I just received my Mar. ’11 issue and was flattered to find out you printed my letter. However, by your response I think you misunderstood my diaper tip. This was not an ad for Pampers. If you go to and punch in engine diapers in the search, you will see what I was referring to. Hope this helps.
Frank DeVeglio
West Islip, NY

Hmm. Yes, we misunderstood, and we apologize. How the heck did we make that mistake? Thanks for the clarification!

European Sentiments
We just spent the summer over here and toured the trails of British Columbia, the Rockies, Moab, and the Rubicon with our SWB 88 G-Wagen. Yes, too-small engine (2L/four-cylinder), too-small tires (32), much too long low gears. I have greatly been enjoying your magazine and really loved the Ultimate Adventure coverage. Thanks for that.

From the European viewpoint, America is still the land of the (relatively) freeat least off-roadwise. Don’t let the funsuckers do to you what happened to us. Over in the old world we really are starting to feel like we’re doing something illegal when we go along a gravel road (and most times we actually are). On the other hand, some of our fellow non-blacktoppers over here are fuelling the issue by not nearly treading lightly, leaving piles of cans in the woods, leaving campfires smouldering, and so on. So doing something is one thing, but not doing something might also be important. You have got a lot to lose and it is worth fighting for it. Good luck!
Matthias Goettenauer
Via email

Thanks for the note. It will always be a battle to keep areas open. You are doing the right thing by picking up after those who trash it, here and back home. Thanks!

Local Sentiments
While I understand that many off-roaders are very annoyed by decisions to close trails and limit access of off-road vehicles to certain wilderness areas, I can only be relieved.I have no aversion to driving vehicles for sport, and I can see the fun in it, but I do have a problem with driving very heavy vehicles in delicate ecosystems. When I see a ton-weight Jeep crashing through undergrowth, into streams, and along beaches, all I can see is the destruction of natural habitats, which will have lastingeffects on the ecosystem, such as erosion, water pollution, and the wrecking of plants that are integral to how well an area thrives. It islike driving a four-wheeler through a china shop. I say that a remedy to this situation is to stay on the trails and off wilderness that has yet to be driven, especially anywhere with water, whether it bethe coast or a river, as they tend to be more fragile. You could also drive in places that have already been damaged, like quarries, or stick to manmade tracks and such. That wouldnot impact the environment as much. There are probably manyoff-roaders who feel that the full experience of off-roading cannot be attained unless it is actually inthe wild, but I think that there are better ways to experience nature than sitting inside a vehicle, which rather defeats the point of being there inthe first place.
Niamh Murphy
San Jose, CA

You make some good points, and we should always be careful of where we wheel. However, Wilderness is a Federal land designation that doesn’t allow motorized recreation, and we respect that by staying out of it. We agree that for the most part we should stay on trails and existing 4x4 areas. However, there are certain legal open areas that allow for new trails and are designed to be used in this manner. For instance, most trails we show are on private land that may not even have virgin growth on it and which is slated for development or other use. Yes, erosion can be harmful, but it is as natural a process as humans themselves and has been happening for 4.6 billion years.

But Wait! DED ID
I saw the DED flathead-six engine photo in the Oct. ’10 issue (Supersonic DED), and for anyone trying to find parts for this engine or trying to identify some of the early engine swaps, here is some information on the photo and early Willys engine swaps.

The engine in the photois an F-6 161 Hurricane engine produced by Willys from 1952 to 1955(the later L-226 motor was called the Super Hurricane).It was found inmany 2WD wagons but was used most in the Willys Aero. It is the same design as the F-head 134 four motor with the intake valves in the head and the exhaust in the block (uses many of the same parts). It was a great running motor with 90 hp and bolted right up to the T-90 transmission. As Willys started all yearly productions in midyear, a few of these engines were actually installed in the ’50 Jeepsters sold in 1951 and it was the same cubic inch as the Lightning L-6 161 engine.

Willys F-6 161 Hurricane

The Lightning six (flathead 1948-1951) found its way into many a Jeep, as it was a 9.42:1 compression motor with 70 hp and there was a 191ci version. Very smooth and lots of get-up-and-go.

The Supersonic six was a Studebaker flathead motor that looked like the Lightning six except the carb and manifold were on the opposite side. These engines found their way into many Willys as conversions because Studebaker also used the T-90 transmission and many of the samedivetrainand overdrive parts, so you see many Supersonic six motors in Willys.

Kaiser Supersonic

The first V-8 swaps in Jeeps were also Studebaker V-8 engines because they bolted right upto the transmission with little problem. Except for the driver-side exhaust manifold, they fit right into flatfender Jeeps, so many barn finds have this motor under the hood.
Walt Mikolajcik
West Coast Willys #1
Via email

Thanks, Walt. Now all we have to do is figure out who owns said jeep and how to resurrect it and drive it home.

Reader Rant

Readers’ Rides
I received my Feb. ’11 issue in December 2010 (go figure). I know you guys like living in the future.

In reference to your best 40 readers’ rides (Mild to Wild), you can do better. On page 24 and 25 there are 8 Heeps, page 26 has 4 Chevys, page 27 has 4 Fords, page 28 has 4 Dodges, and pages 30 and 31 have 8 Toyotas. There is some miscellaneous stuff, but not one Suzuki. I know plenty of Samurais and Trackers that would fare better (wild to mild). How about leaving out a few Heeps and Yotas and including some other outstanding rides? It’s really not the best readers’ rides you printed. I know of plenty of wild 4x4s that should be included. Next time talk to me first before you go to print.
Name withheld due to slam back

Here’s a thought: Why didn’t you submit your ride in the first place? If you and your killer Suzuki buddies don’t send anything in, we can’t run them! Better yet, send ’em in and we’ll give you a full page of awesome Samurai for next year’s readers’ rides issue. Oh, and if they are a scan of a Polaroid printed on crappy paper that you shoved in an envelope, we can’t use that either. Good-quality prints or digital photos of the proper size and quality are what we need (see details in each month’s Readers’ Rides department). Also, no photos of you and your dog on the front lawn. Read the rules, submit a great photo to the proper address, include the required information, and just maybe we’ll use your photo. Remember we might have to rename the story Best 40 Readers’ Rides That We Received From People Who Have a Clue of What to Send In.

Submission Information 4-Wheel & Off-Road welcomes letters to the editor. Letters must include an address or a telephone number so the sender can be verified. Once verified, your name may be withheld at your request. Letters published in this magazine reflect the opinions of the writers, and we reserve the right to edit letters for clarity, brevity, or other purposes. Due to the large volume of mail we receive, we regret that we cannot reply to unpublished letters or return photos. Digital photos must measure no less than 1600 x 1200 pixels (or two megapixels) and be saved as a TIFF, an EPS, or a maximum-quality JPEG file. Write to: Editor, 4-Wheel & Off-Road, 831 S. Douglas St., El Segundo, CA 90245; fax 310.531.9368 Email to:

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