2003: Picking up my new pile in Oregon. One of the most asked about projects that I have built was the '73 Jeep J-2000 pickup. The 49-inch Irocks were the largest light-truck tire out there at the time and Rockwell axles were really picking up in popularity. I figured I could combine both elements in one vehicle. I usually build around the tires so the J-truck was the perfect platform since it already had a V-8 and a decent transmission. So why was it called the Hot Dog? Well, Christian Hazel came up with the name (as he does for most of my 4x4s). This one came about because the truck was bent in the middle and we really had no idea what was in it. Someone had swapped out the AMC 360 V-8, TH400 automatic transmission, and Quadra-Trac transfer case for a unknown year (1976-ish) AMC 304, T-18 manual transmission, and Dana 20 transfer case, yet left the original 360 V-8, automatic, and Quadra-Trac badging on the truck. Interestingly enough, all of the names he comes up with are degrading in some aspect, which is ironic since he was the reason I bought this particular truck. In fact, he did all the legwork. I never even talked to the seller until we were at his house 900-something miles away. We decided to make an adventure out of it so we drove up and I planned to drive the truck home. That didn't go as well as planned. You can read that story by CLICKING HERE. Anyway, I built the truck up in a small two car garage. You can see part 1 through 4 of the buildup HERE. After entering the Hot Dog in Top Truck Challenge in 2005 it was pretty hammered. It made a few more wheeling trips to the desert before I sold it to a guy in Las Vegas, Nevada. He flipped it pretty quick to a guy in the South. Tennessee I think. Somehow the truck found it's way to Illinois where it was sold on eBay to a guy that shipped it overseas to Lebanon. Since then I have seen a few pics and heard a few stories. Well, here is the latest. They guy cut the cab and bed off. I don't think it looks as good. What do you think? Oh well. Not my truck anymore.
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