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May 2011 Mailbag: Letters to the Editor

Posted in Features on May 1, 2011
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In the Beginning...
I have been a Jp subscriber since the beginning. When was that? In the latest issue (Trail Head, Jan. '11); John Cappa says it was in January 2001 that he typed out Trail Head. I have my copy of Jp from spring 1996, which is labeled Premiere Edition Volume 1, Number 1 with a Trail Head written by Rob Reaser. Help, I thought my copy was the original. Do you think the first couple of issues that I have are of any value?
Neil Hitz
Beverly Hills, MI

Everything you wrote is accurate. The first issue of Jp came out in spring of 1996. I didn't become editor till the January '01 issue. It was my first editorial. Not the first for the magazine. Are the first issues worth anything? Nope. I have a whole stack of them. But if you find some sucker willing to pay a bunch of money for 'em, let me know.

Come-on Trasborg!
First, congrats to the Comman D'oh for the first place finish; at least Hazel did every event (and pushed it, too) which brings me to my gripe. When you do something like this, hype up this derby, do builds, have contests of vehicle capabilities, let's actually do it! Don't wuss out (Trasborg) because you built something you wanna drive daily. That wasn't the essence of this build/contest at all. This was about taking something (whatever the condition bad or good) and building it to be thrashed for one contest. Trasborg's effort, or lack thereof, was a total letdown, in this, the finale of the derby. Personally, I had his rig being the frontrunner of the whole deal (had he finished the 4WD conversion and not been such a wuss in those opted-out of events). I was really looking forward to seeing how well it did, or as in this case, didn't do. It's like going on 4-Wheel & Off-Road's Ultimate Adventure trip and not wheeling, and what's worse, whining I can't do that; I might scratch my paint or dent my fender.

Well done Hazel and Cappa. You kept with the spirit of this build/derby and should be commended.

Oh yeah, the bumperettes, Trasborg, really?
Joshua Kriger
Via email

Sh!%box Hater
I'm writing in regards to "The Sh!%box Derby" in the Jan. '11 issue. I would like to start out saying Hazel, you are a dumb a$$. Is that the best stuff you can find to write about? Was Cappa napping at press time?

Come on, I hope you didn't spend much time on writing this crap. As I was reading it, I tried to side with you on who your target audience would be. I don't see how the JK or Wrangler crowd would give a rats a$$ about your derby. I can't see any classic-breed Jeep owner getting anything out of you acting like a 10-year-old with ADD so other than your attempt at humor, your article added no valve whatsoever to any Jeep enthusiast (there must be a humor magazine you can transfer your talent to and spare us). Destroying classic Jeeps (or any Jeep) is not funny. They don't need you or your buddies' help-rust claims enough of them without you.

If purposely destroying Jeeps is something you plan on doing in future articles, please send me a refund on what's left of my subscription. Stick with Jeep articles, builds, and how-to articles.
Don Fletcher
Via email

Derby Lover
I read "The Sh!%box Derby" and loved it. I think you should rename it "Ultimate Sh!%box Derby." You could have readers submit, pick two a year, or whatever works, and also have guest competitors. Let Hazel marshal the whole event and let it roll! I love it.

I would also like to see more content. I am reading the mag too fast, maybe pick up some reader project "specials" that they could submit. I would also like to see more of Randy's Electrical Corner. More than one page with more photos would be great. Thanks for your guidance and humor!
Mike Parker
Fruita, CO

Sh!%box Inappropriate?
I read "The Sh!%box Derby" in the Jan. '11 issue and saw the videos on and found it all to be quite disappointing. Though much of it was seriously lacking in any real 4x4 merit, that wasn't the problem because it appears you were enjoying yourselves. The "abandonment" part of the competition was completely inappropriate. You have countless guys writing in to you about how they want to get their kids involved in the Jeeping hobby, and guess what-they use you as role models. The last thing they need to see are guns being fired at your rigs. The picture of Cappa firing the gun at his Willys is just dumb. Those rounds could have easily ricocheted off some part of the Jeep and maimed him or hit the makeshift fuel tank in the box. If it doesn't happen to you, it might happen to one of your readers who thinks what you are doing is cool. Aside from that, don't you guys have any respect for vintage iron? I'm sure the majority of readers out there would rather see you destroy your rig by using it for its intended purpose. Running a magazine with a large audience, you guys have to realize that what you publish is setting an example for a lot of your younger readers and those with poor judgment. I won't stop buying your magazine because a lot of what you have to offer is good. However, the New Year might be a good time to turn a new leaf-take some more pride in what you do and put some more thought into how your work will impact your audience.
Vancouver Island, BC.

Hazel Cheated!
I am writing to you to comment on the results of your recent competition ("The Sh!%box Derby," Jan '11), if you can consider it that. First, I would like to say that I feel as though it was an unfair competition based on the fact that the primary, and only judge (to my knowledge), was one of the competitors. You were all duped into letting Hazel not only compete, but make the rules and be the judge! Tell me that wasn't a set-up. Second, there were absolutely no points given in the category of sh!%%iest sh!%box! Seriously, a Comanche and a Commando against a Willys? The CJ was about as old as the other two combined! How about some props to Cappa on that one? Trust me, I drive a GPW (it's my only vehicle). They are true-to-life sh!%boxes.

In the future, I suggest you allow an impartial person to create and judge these competitions.
Via email

MI FSJ Found
Last year I noticed that FSJ pictured in "Michigan Mayhem" (Jan. '11) and thought it could be recovered as a trail rig. Now it's missing axles and the tailgate. I took the wife and kids to visit my parents and Bundy Hill over Thanksgiving and drove past the FSJ carcass just hours before I got my Jp magazine in the mail. Unfortunately, I did not get a chance to get back for the photo until our Christmas visit. The park was closed, so the JK was clean for the pics. I picked up my '07 Unlimited in July for a daily driver, but plan to build it up little by little.
Adam Hopkins
Via email

Hotwire Happy
Since 1986 I have been the second owner of a '79 CJ-7 Levi Renegade. It has 57,000 miles on it and is unmolested with the original 258 engine. I just wanted to let you know with your series project J-2008 you inspired me to install a multiport injection system. I picked up a system off a '93 Grand Cherokee for $50 and fitted it to the 258. Hotwire Auto ( reconfigured the Grand Cherokee wiring to stand alone, it just plugs into the original CJ-7 wiring. The Jeep can be put back to original at anytime or upgraded. With parts and help from 4WD Hardware, this upgrade was a resounding success. It is well worth the time, effort, and money doing this upgrade. I can't believe it is the same Jeep, and it was done with original Jeep parts.
Dan Whalen
Via email

Grand Via
To the Editor of the '08 Jeep Grand Cherokee CRD articles, I never heard of your website, and before the beginning of this week, I didn't really care to. That changed on December 6, 2010, because I became aware of a fact. Jeep offered a diesel in a Grand Cherokee. My wife loves the SUVs; I didn't care for the mileage. And there we sat, never to be bothered with getting an SUV that could pull our boat and still get good MPG. I am happy to say that as of yesterday, December 8, 2010, we purchased an '07 CRD Grand. I got the bulk of my knowledge from your online articles on this vehicle and I hope mine treats me as well. I love your writing style, facts baby.

Just so you have something to gauge against, I'll provide you with my input. We live in Indianapolis and current temps are hovering around zero degrees Fahrenheit. Anyway, when we showed up for a test drive, it started up with no hesitation. Once we bought it, we had an 80-mile Interstate journey back home. Doing 70 mph for about 40 miles, it averaged 21.6 mpg; doing 75-80 mph for about 20 miles, mileage was similar. When I got on a slower piece of intersection, I did 60 mph for about 15 miles. I got 26.7 mpg! I am hoping for better and better mileage, since it only has 35,000 miles on it.

And yes, this morning at 2 degrees Fahrenheit without the block heater plugged in overnight-it started with no issue and with only about a 4-second glow plug delay.
Andrew Padgett
Indianapolis, IN

Don't Touch
I am writing about "How To Survive" (Jan. '11). It refers to poisonous snakes. Snakes are venomous not poisonous. Here are a few pics with our '89 Jeep and a timber rattlesnake in Pennsylvania. My wife Wendy and I are trained to handle these types of snakes. They should never be handled if you don't know how. Please keep the snakes alive. We are lucky to live where we can see these fine creatures.
Bob and Wendy Trayer
Via email

Attempted Correction
In "How to Survive" (Jan. '11), I believe a portion of the advice you are giving is incorrect. The bitten area should not be elevated above the heart. It should be kept below the heart to slow the spread of the venom. Please check it out and correct as necessary.
Michael Carroll
Vista, CA

Actually, we contacted a real poison control MD to get his response. In this case, I'm going with the real doc and not past recommendations. Here is what he had to say:

"We used to think that elevating the extremity was, somehow, a bad thing. This was based on a theoretical presumption that elevating the extremity would somehow gravity-assist the drainage of the venom towards the heart, and this was thought to be dangerous. The fact is that this phenomenon does not really occur as described. Venom does not pour away from the site of envenomation depending on the position of the arm. The venom itself is articulated into the subcutaneous space around the bite site. The angle at which you hold the arm does not lead to venom pouring in any direction. So, arm up or arm down, the rate at which venom leaves the bite site is more or less the same. Venom is too large to be picked up by blood capillaries. It is picked up by the lymphatic system, which is a very slow moving system, is not gravity dependent, nor influenced significantly by positioning.

"There may be some distribution of venom away from the bite site to the surrounding subcutaneous tissue, when the arm is elevated, and this might be hindered when the arm is down. If you think about it, you actually want this to occur. Why? Because the more time that the venom lingers at the bite site, the more local tissue damage you will have, and the more likely you will lose a finger/toe, etc. So, this is a theoretical advantage to elevating the extremity.

"Those are more theoretical concerns noted above, but they address the mythological aspect of why it's not necessary to keep the arm down (which you will find advised in many wilderness manuals and similar writings).

"The more practical reason that we advise elevating the extremity is very simple-pain control. Leave it down, and it throbs and hurts like a #$%@^&*. Elevate the extremity, and the pain is more tolerable as you are traveling to the hospital. During the hospitalization, we continue to keep the extremity elevated until you go home."
Cyrus Rangan, MD
California Poison Control System

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.

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