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May 2013 Readers’ Rides

1974 Ford F 100
Harry Wagner | Writer
Posted May 1, 2013
Photographers: Readers

Homegrown 4x4s

River City Rockcrawler
Vehicle: 1974 Ford F-100
Owner: Dan Stites, Sacramento, CA
Tires & Wheels: 35x12.5R15 BFGoodrich Mud-Terrains on black Pro Comp steel wheels
Suspension: 6-inch Deaver coils and custom long arm in front, 51⁄2-inch Deaver leaf springs and Sky Mfg. shackle flip in rear
Drivetrain: NP435 transmission, NP205 transfer case, front Dana 44, rear Ford 9-inch with spool and alloy axleshafts, 4.56 gears
Performance Mods: Stock 390ci V-8
Does everything work the way you want?: With the new suspension in front it works great!
Anything you would change?: Front locker and chromoly axleshafts, 4.88 gears, 37-inch tires

Homebuilt YJ
Vehicle: 1994 Jeep Wrangler YJ
Owner: Adam VanSlyke, Washington Court House, OH
Tires & Wheels: 35x12.5x15 BF Goodrich KM2s on 15x8 Cragar 342s
Suspension: Spring over axle with rear spring packs and main add-a-leaf, Skyjacker shocks at all corners
Drivetrain: Stock AX15 5-speed transmission, NP231 with slip yoke eliminator, Dana 30 front with 760 U-joints, 1-piece longside axleshaft, Tru-Trac, 31-spline Ford 8.8 rear with Aussie locker, 4.88 gears
Performance Mods: ’02 intake swap and TIG-welded custom header
Other Doodads: 10,000 Viper winch, A/C compressor converted into onboard air, Hi-lift jack, custom bumpers with rear swing-down tire carrier and front trail stinger, 6-point rollcage
Does everything work the way you want?: Yes
Anything you would change?: Chromoly shafts front and rear and a Dana 44 in the front
Anything to add?: Every bit of the work done on this YJ has been done by me in my own garage

Vehicle: 2004 Toyota Tacoma
Owner: Brett Ratell, Bay City, MI
Tires & Wheels: 285/75/16 Treadwright Wardens on black powdercoated FJ80 wheels
Suspension: Old Man Emu coil springs in front, stock springs with add-a-leaves in back, Bilstein 5100 shocks
Drivetrain: Stock with factory electric locker
Performance Mods: 3.4L V-6 with K&N filter
Other Doodads: Baja Rack roof rack, Mombasa Adventure rooftop tent mounted over the bed, All-Pro Off-Road rear bumper with an Ironman Fab rear tire carrier, Scion stereo, Lightforce 140 lights, DieHard Platinum battery, Trasharoo
Funniest Wheeling Incident: An impromptu “tire test” with my old Toyota pickup and my buddy that ended up being a daylong, stuck-past-the-axles late night deal
Anything you would change?: ARB Bull Bar and Air Lockers
Anything to add?: We love taking the truck camping, especially to Michigan’s U.P.

Big Red
Vehicle: 1966 Chevy K10
Owner: Rob Woods
Tires & Wheels: 35/16/15 Super Swamper Boggers on 15x12 Mickey Thompson Classic IIs
Suspension: 3-inch lift springs
Drivetrain: TH350 transmission, NP203 transfer case, 10-bolt front with limited slip, 12-bolt rear with locker, 3.73 gears
Performance Mods: ’98 Vortec 350 V-8 with Edelbrock high-rise intake manifold and 650-cfm carb
Other Doodads: ’78 K10 chassis
Funniest Wheeling Incident: My daughter sleeps to the hum of the Boggers. It is her redneck lullaby.
Does everything work the way you want?: Yes
Anything to add?: When my daughter is able to climb in on her own we are going up to a 6-inch lift and 40-inch tires

Zombie Crawler
Vehicle: 2009 Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited Rubicon
Owner: Sonja Grimaldi, Yuma, AZ
Tires & Wheels: 39.5x16.5x17 Pit Bull Rockers on 17x8 Stazworks double-beadlock rims
Suspension: 6-inch Teraflex lift with Monster control arms
Drivetrain: 42RE transmission, Advance Adapters Rubicrawler, NP241 Rocktrac transfer case, Tera 60 axles front and rear with ARB Air Lockers and 5.38 gears
Performance Mods: 3.8L with Banks intake and cat-back exhaust
Other Doodads: Zombie wrap by Sonja’s Banners Plus, Tom Wood’s driveshafts, PSC hydraulic assist steering, Mopar half-doors, full rollcage, 5-point harnesses, Lightforce lights, Warn 9500Ti winch, ARB fridge
Funniest Wheeling Incident: We thought we made it through a squeeze with no body damage, so we high-fived everyone. But when we started to drive on, the rear right wheel was going in and out like a cartoon, badly bent.
Does everything work the way you want?: Yes, it works great
Anything you would change?: Coilovers will be the last modification

Military Ride of the Month
Vehicle: 1998 Jeep Wrangler TJ
Owner: William Bixman, SSG, USAR, Paso Robles, CA
Tires & Wheels: 33x12.5R15 Dick Cepek FC-II on Pro Comp steel wheels
Suspension: Rubicon Express 41⁄2-inch Superflex with short arms and Rancho RS9000X shocks
Drivetrain: Stock AX15 transmission, NP231J with Teraflex SYE, front Dana 30 with ARB, rear G2-built Dana 44 with 35-spline ARB, alloy axleshafts, and disc-brake conversion
Performance Mods: 4.0L with K&N intake and Banks header and cat-back exhaust
Other Doodads: Custom rear bumper that doubles as air tank
Funniest wheeling incident: After I first purchased my TJ, I kept it clean inside and out and mostly just commuted with it. While running some errands one day, I got a call from a friend who was out mudding and needed some assistance. Lo and behold, my Chili Pepper Red Jeep became a North Carolina Red Clay Jeep that day and hasn’t been very clean ever since.
Does everything work the way you want?: So far, so good!
Anything you would change?: Wish I had waited for the Rubicon edition so I wouldn’t have started with a rear Dana 35 (RIP), but they didn’t come in Chili Pepper Red. Anything that has been changed thus far was due to necessity (broken parts, weak links).
Anything to add?: I’ve done almost all of the modifications and maintenance to my TJ. Every time I need a new tool, I buy it and add it to the tool kit in the trunk. Not once have I had to leave her on the trail because of a breakdown, and I intend to not have to trailer her to or from the trail.

Quick Learner
Vehicle: 1994 Toyota Land Cruiser FZJ80
Owner: Asher Derrico, Atlanta, GA
Tires & Wheels: 285/75R16 BFG All-Terrains on factory Tundra rims
Suspension: Old Man Emu 3-inch lift with Metal Tech 1-inch spacers
Drivetrain: A442F transmission, factory full-floating rearend, Longfield birfields, 4.11 gears
Performance Mods: 4.5L 6-cylinder, high-flow catalytic converters, Chevy muffler
Other Doodads: ARB Bull Bar, Safari Snorkel, Warm M8000 winch with synthetic line, MetalTech sliders, Slee skidplate, Part Time conversion with Aisin hubs
Funniest Wheeling Incident: Passing a Jeep on a tight trail up at Beasley Knob and almost ripping my fender flares off on his tires
Does everything work the way you want?: Almost
Anything you would change?: Add some lockers, get larger tires, take the fender flares off, and add a rear bumper
Anything to add?: I’ve been reading this magazine for only a year, but I’ve already learned so much

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