Pete's Jeep, Cheap Truck, Danger Ranger, and More!
Pete’s Jeep Inquiry
Being a Willys guy, I love any of the Willys stuff you guys write about. I liked hearing about the history of Pete’s Jeep [”Pete’s Jeep Revival,” Apr. ’12]. It was very cool. It is similar to what I have, a ’48 CJ-2A with a 4.3L Chevy V-6, a TH350, and a Dana 300. A good upgrade I would like to see a write-up on is adding a CJ-5 fuel to the rear under the bed area. But what I would love to know is how are you running a front driveshaft with the TH350? On mine it just won’t clear the tranny pan. I am planning on a two-piece shaft but would love to see how it clears on Pete’s Jeep.
Actually, the shaft barely clears, and a Baja-style jump would not be advisable. But for regular Jeeping it works great. First, it’s a small, 11⁄2-inch-diameter tube for the front driveshaft, and even it gets polished. The front bolts on the pan are oval-headed Allen screws ground down to the thinnest degree. Finally, the pan itself is clearance and the lip removed or bashed in where the shaft likes to go.
Cheap Truck Challenge Returns?
Are you guys really bringing back the Cheap Truck Challenge? I know you’ve been stringing us along for a few years about its return, but in the May ’12 issue you state it’ll be here in an issue or two. My July ’05 issue with the Cheap Truck Challenge is still one of my favorite reads. For the love of God, please do not yank my chain on this one or I’m gonna be pissed!
Yes, it returns in this issue (see page 60)! I built a Toyota for this month, and next month you can read all about the challenge results.
Danger Ranger Rehash
Nice work on the Ranger project [“Ranger Rehash,” Mar. ’12 and ongoing]. It’s nice to see them get some exposure. I have just one question: Did you know that instead of custom-fabbing in Jeep suspension parts, you could have made one call to Bryan, Brad, or Suzi at James Duff? They have everything you need to simply bolt it on and go.
I have a ’90 Bronco II (these hardly get magazine exposure, but Ranger/Explorer stuff crosses over) with their coil towers and track bar locator. They also have 0.188-wall radius arms I hope to step up to later. I did it all in a garage with simple handtools, a cutoff wheel, and a 1⁄2-inch drill. I highly recommend them. Everything works as they said it would. Here’s a photo of my Bronco also.
You are so right, Jesse. James Duff has been a great company since day one. We decided on Jeep stuff for the Danger Ranger only as a different low-buck option for those who like to fab out their rides.
North Africa Jeep Adventure
In reference to your editorial “An Awesome Adventure” [4xForward, May ’12], I applaud your efforts to honour the 70th anniversary of the Long Range Desert Group. One comment though: Your article omits that little piece of information that credits the elite “British” forces. Also, the LRDG used mostly 30 CWT Chevy trucks (about a ton and a half). It was the SAS—again, British and “Empire” forces (Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and so on)—who came from the LRDG who used the modified Jeeps.
We have found out so much cool information on who, what, when, and how the Allies fought in North Africa against the Axis that it boggles the mind. We embark shortly on the Awesome Adventure and yet will be back in time to give you all the details in the September issue.
I have been a huge fan of you guys at for a few years since I got my first Jeep. I very rarely set your magazine down without reading it cover to cover first. I love reading about the rides, deals, and technical fixes, and even the trail articles (especially Ultimate Adventure). In the May ’12 issue I found one thing that really boggled my mind. In the cover section, Straight Conversions, you guys said, “Either way, starting with a basic template can save you a ton of time, money, and aggregation on your solid-axle project.” The word in question is aggregation. I looked the word up and it made no reference to axles or anything as such. I was wondering if you could help out a confused reader and get me the real meaning of what you were trying to say.
Thanks for everything you guys do there at 4-Wheel & Off-Road!
Clay Center, KS
Well, more egg on our face. Really, we did that? Thanks for pointing it out, as aggravating as it may be.