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August 2010 Mailbag

Posted in Features on August 1, 2010
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Nice cover, "10 Things Wrong With Your Jeep." Good way to tell others who see your mag on a newsstand that we all drive pieces of junk. A guy in a Cobra Mustang puts drag radials on an otherwise stock car, goes to the drag strip, and grenades a rear end. Do you think Motorcraft says "Recalled!"? Or just some idiot hooked up too well for stock parts? How about ten good upgrades? Still love the mag, I just don't understand that cover.
Via email

Money-Saving XJ Tip
In reference to the article where you showed how to rebuild the '87-'01 Jeep Cherokee AW-4 neutral safety switch ("Rebuild the Master Switch,", I wanted to thank the folks at Jp magazine for the excellent article related to my '96 Cherokee. I was set to spend close to $300 for a part that thanks to your article took me less than 30 minutes to rebuild. I can't thank you guys enough! Keep up the great work!
Aaron Fetter
Anchorage, AK

'Nother Sucka
You f***kers! After writing a sappy email a couple of weeks back and calling you out on another April prank ("It's April Fools!"), I had time to think about this being another prank this year. I got the May '10 issue today, and sure enough, it proved how stupid I am. Keep up the great work and keep the Jp chicks around! With 11 months of snow and three days near 80 here in Northern Wisconsin, we need all the swimsuits you publish! Take care and (try to) keep the rubber side down!
Roger Nocerini
Eagle River, WI

Reagan Fan
Thanks for providing a great May '10 issue. I loved the feature on President Reagan's CJ-6 and CJ-8 ("CJ One"). Great vehicles owned by an even greater president! And the Jeepster feature ("Rocking Oddball") is something not commonly seen, although I've seen a few on Craigslist recently and loved the looks of them.

Also just wanted to give you a heads up: The web address for Zingology in New Products is a bit off. It's supposed to be Dennis Kreft Oakdale, MN

Reagan Righting
I read "CJ One" (May '10) and thoroughly enjoyed reading about both CJs. Just wanted to give you a heads up that Reagan's Scrambler was an '81. The funky shifting SR-4 is one of the dead giveaways. That trans was only available in pre-'82. I hope the Collins folks didn't think that trans was supposed to be in an '83! Also, the wheels are 15x8 (in '81 only) to go with the narrow track axles it has. The graphics are '81-'82 style. Many folks have discussed this Scrambler over the years on the Internet, and this is nothing new. Maybe the folks at the museum thought it was an '83?
Eric Jankowski
Via email

Thanks for the email. I originally had it listed as an '81 in my story, but caved after some of my research (mostly a few books and old newspaper articles) listed the CJ-8 as an '83. One was an official White House press release from the early '80s, so even they got it wrong! Collins Bros. says that they've seen '83s with those transmissions before, but who knows what/where/when the vehicles started out as or what parts were added/replaced thereafter.

I was told Nancy bought the Jeep for Reagan used in '83, so perhaps that's where some of the confusion comes from. Again, I wasn't able to nail down whether or not that "fact" is accurate or not, so I didn't print it.

I'm disappointed that the article is out there listing the CJ-8 as the wrong year; perhaps running your email in this issue will clear things up.
Thanks very much,
Christian Hazel
Technical Editor

Print Hate Mail!
I didn't notice your last issue was April and fell for it again.

Although I'm still looking forward to IH buying Jeep. I was kind of disappointed that you came out of the closet or drug induced coma and ran off to be an actor.

OK, since I really can't believe anything you say anymore, was the welfare recipient that cuts firewood on the side a line of bull, too?

At any rate, keep the abrupt attitude, say it like it is, and feel free to use (tastefully of course) the "sophomoric" vocabulary that pisses off a few readers.

Also, you need to quit posting the reader comments that like what you do-your hate mail is a lot funnier. It sort of exposes some fairly thin-skinned people, doesn't it?

I also feel you have the right to comment on political issues when the subject deals with any facet of our hobby (I despise Nancy Pelosi, there I said it). You really need to consider posting a picture of an assault-type rifle with a naked girl holding up the dead furry animal you just shot. Oh, and have a camo Jeep in the background.

Have fun and keep your dork in the dirt.
Mike Dick
Via email

Time to Move
First, great rag. The tech stuff you guys do is first rate, average guy stuff we can all relate to. Even though I only own one running Jeep, a stock '99 XJ, I'm still a faithful newsstand buyer, as your tech stuff rocks. Anyway, what the heck ever happened to the M-715 Trasborg was writing about in "Fullwidth" (May '09)? I've gone thru every issue I have and burned up my computer surfing and found nothing. I swapped in a 4BT Cummins/TH475 into my M-725 (the ambulance version of the M-715), and just finished rebuilding the dually Dana 60 front and Dana 70/14-bolt combo, but don't see anything about how you swapped 'em in. Did you move the axle perches or relocate the springs and hangers? Help, quick. I started pulling this thing apart in my driveway and the city inspector is gonna catch me with this "junk vehicle" ripped apart and give me a ticket (I've paid $2,300 in fines for my four trucks' zoning violations over the last 10 years).
Harry Pierce
Farmington Hills, MI

The good thing about Trasborg is also the bad thing about Trasborg-once he gets an idea or a goal he latches onto it like a bulldog. In this case, he was determined to use 12-bolt HMMWV rims for the radial tires he is using. Plus he wanted the wheels cheap, which meant not shipping them across the country. Although everyone told him 8-bolt rims were fine, he had to have the 12-bolts. Then, the week he finds the rims and is ready to get on the install, he breaks his leg. By the time you read this, he should be out of his cast and finishing up that long-lost story.

Quick Input
Welcome back from Washington, Cappa! You and Hazel finally got me with one of your April Fool's gags. Congratulations! I should have figured it out when he said you were leaving to become an actor. It would have been more believable if he'd said you were going to be the new host of Mythbusters or Dirty Jobs.

Random Thought: I cringe when I see an Obama '08 bumper sticker on a Jeep, but I have never seen one on a Wrangler.

Constructive Criticism: I agree with the gentleman who wrote in about some of the camera angles Jp magazine uses. I don't want to see pictures of Jeeps sitting in the driveway (or at the mall), but I would like a front, rear, and most of all a side view of the Jeeps you feature (if not in the magazine, then on the website). I need the views because I'm in the process of piecing together a '97 TJ and love to see side views to get some idea of stance, wheelbase, and so on. I want to build something like "Scrappy the Wonder Jeep" (Feb. '09). You guys would be doing me a big favor if you would build a budget Jeep following it as a general template.

Scary Report: I read an article in another magazine about the new head of Jeep saying they are planning on taking Jeep into the niche markets that Chrysler had ignored. Like small FWD SUVs and crap like that. Yikes! Are they not paying attention? They are making the Grand Cherokee less off-road oriented with every revision. The market is flooded with small cheap FWD junk. Jeep needs to go back to its off-road roots. I say bring back the Jeep truck (in both full and compact sizes), the FC, and Cherokee (all with solid front axles)! Stay on them about this! Beat them up every issue! Use your incredible journalistic powers to make this happen! (Was that motivational or what?)

Keep up the good work! You guys rule! I look forward to every issue of Jp more than any other subscription I get, and it is thanks to you guys!
Mike Heckert
Via email

In the May '10 issue of Jp you have a picture of a Jeep wrecking yard on page 38 (the same picture also appears in the Table of Contents). Where is this place? What is this business's name?
Ethan Kiburtz
Salt Lake City, UT

The photo was taken in the wrecking yard of Collins Bros. Jeep in Wylie, Texas, ( several years ago.

I think you guys do a great job, but I'm noticing a disturbing trend. I used to go straight to the tech articles, then Dr. Vern, then after the mag was about a month old I would read the Mailbag section. Now I find myself going straight to Mailbag. I think it's hilarious how angry people get at you guys. I generally find angry people funny to begin with, which explains all the bar fights I've been in. I got to thinking that if all the people who get so very angry at you would focus their hostility at a state senator or a representative, maybe we wouldn't lose all the off-road places we have to enjoy our Jeeps. Really, what do you think is more important, telling off some magazine editor in Los-Whatever, California, or protecting our rights as Americans to enjoy our sport. If you don't like the girls in the back of the magazine, don't look. If you don't want your son to see them, tear off the back page. It makes sense to me. Okay, I'm off my orange crate now. Keep up the great work.
Jonathan Kile
Millville, PA

Uhhh, Yeah...
I, like Stephanie M., am fighting a battle with your magazine (Mailbag, Mar. '10). No, I won't be renewing my subscription until I hear you are not going to have images like the ones you show off of Randy in Randy's Electrical Corner. I don't care that you have a picture of Randy there. My 11-year-old daughter looks at these magazines. They have to be safe for her. I can't have her seeing this picture, and I don't want my wife looking at Randy either. She does not want me to renew the subscription as long as there are pictures like this in Jp magazine. Please let us know if you decide to ditch the Randy centerfold spread and we will renew.
Jason Katt
Grand Rapids, MI

Write Us! Got a question or comment about Jp magazine or the village idiots at the helm? Drop us a line. Don't forget to include your full name and where you're from or we'll make fun of you. Actually, we may make fun of you anyway. Keep it short and to the point or we'll hack and chop your letter as we please. We get a lot of mail, but we read every letter. Unfortunately, we can't print or personally answer every request. We're too busy surfing the Internet on the company dime. Digital images should be no less than 1,600x1,200 pixels (or 2 megapixels) and should be saved as a .tiff, an .eps, or a maximum-quality .jpeg file.

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Jp Magazine, Editor
831 S. Douglas St.
El Segundo, CA 90245
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