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Talmadge Mooseman

Squatchin' Vehicle

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Redbone
SSR Team
3 hours ago, Talmadge Mooseman said:

There cannot be too many vehicles that offer both AWD and 4WD, one would think?

Technically, GM calls it "Auto 4WD", "4 HI", and "4 LO". 4 HI definitely locks in the front wheels and turning radius is reduced.

"Auto 4WD" has taken me though some very muddy and difficult terrain.

 

I have forgotten and left it in auto 4wd and couldn't tell on the highway.

 

I've owned a Dodge Durango that had full time 4WD (and a Jeep Grand Cherokee actually).

The Durango was great on mud, snow, and ice but would never have been as effective off road as my Suburban is, not that I gave it much of a chance.

Edited by Redbone
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wiiawiwb

Question .......  I am not mechanically inclined especially when it comes to a vehicle. Wouldn't have the faintest idea how to change the oil.  I'm toying with the idea of getting an old "beater" for a few thousand that I can use in difficult-to-get-to locations. 

 

Given my "lack of talent", which vehicle brand would likely be more reliable given they're all going to have a lot of miles on them.  Wrangler, Suburban, Bronco, 4 Runner, or some pickup?

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norseman
1 hour ago, wiiawiwb said:

Question .......  I am not mechanically inclined especially when it comes to a vehicle. Wouldn't have the faintest idea how to change the oil.  I'm toying with the idea of getting an old "beater" for a few thousand that I can use in difficult-to-get-to locations. 

 

Given my "lack of talent", which vehicle brand would likely be more reliable given they're all going to have a lot of miles on them.  Wrangler, Suburban, Bronco, 4 Runner, or some pickup?

 

In the full size world, Chevrolet is the most popular brand to get parts for. A chevy 350 engine is the most supported V8 on the planet bar none.

 

In compacts? Its Toyota.

 

I would stick with those two brands if I was on a budget.

 

 

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Airdale

I agree with Norse, and from personal experience a Suburban would be my first choice in your situation. If you can find an older one that has been well cared for, all the better. The old '68 we had, with the 292 straight six was so simple I could sit on the fender with the hood up and my feet inside the engine compartment to work on it. The less bells and whistles, the less there is to break. That said, it would pay to learn a few basics of vehicle maintenance. You're not going to have to change the oil in the backwoods, but knowing that corrosion on a battery terminal, even if you can't see it, may prevent the starter from cranking and having the basic tools to fix it  might save your life. A roll of Duck Wrap Fix silicone repair tape, about $5 a roll at Wal-Mart, can seal a split radiator hose or any other leaking item. A self tapping screw and piece of innertube can seal a small puncture in the oil pan or gas tank. I'm no mechanic, but all three of these things are from personal experience. And if you don't know how to change a flat, learn (a can of flat repair spray might work sometimes as well). One of those units that combine an emergency jump start battery, power inflator, work light, etc., wouldn't be amiss. One more from my history, know where your fuel filter is located, carry a spare and any special tool needed to change it. Any rig built in the last quarter century or so uses some type of fuel injection and the system is pressurized, so loosen the gas cap first. I replaced the fuel filter on a '97 Suburban in Glacier Park. And one more on fuel; all newer vehicles have the fuel pump in the gas tank and the fuel cools the pump, so don't run too low as it can shorten pump life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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SWWASAS

I used to work on my vehicles and just got tired of the mess and greasy hands.    So I found a local independent shop that does not rip me off and fix stuff that does not need it.  My truck is a 1999 and I just go in there, tell them I spend a lot of time in remote places in the woods and want them to make it as reliable as possible.    That has not cost me very much and it is comforting to know they have gone over it carefully.   Serpentine belt and radiator hoses were the first things replaced.   You know you have an honest place when they cannot find anything wrong to fix.   I am thinking about changing out the alternator even though there is nothing wrong with it other than it is original with the truck.     Did the same process with the tires at a tire store.    The ones I was running were not heavy duty enough for the rocky logging roads.  

Edited by SWWASAS

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norseman
1 hour ago, Airdale said:

I agree with Norse, and from personal experience a Suburban would be my first choice in your situation. If you can find an older one that has been well cared for, all the better. The old '68 we had, with the 292 straight six was so simple I could sit on the fender with the hood up and my feet inside the engine compartment to work on it. The less bells and whistles, the less there is to break. That said, it would pay to learn a few basics of vehicle maintenance. You're not going to have to change the oil in the backwoods, but knowing that corrosion on a battery terminal, even if you can't see it, may prevent the starter from cranking and having the basic tools to fix it  might save your life. A roll of Duck Wrap Fix silicone repair tape, about $5 a roll at Wal-Mart, can seal a split radiator hose or any other leaking item. A self tapping screw and piece of innertube can seal a small puncture in the oil pan or gas tank. I'm no mechanic, but all three of these things are from personal experience. And if you don't know how to change a flat, learn (a can of flat repair spray might work sometimes as well). One of those units that combine an emergency jump start battery, power inflator, work light, etc., wouldn't be amiss. One more from my history, know where your fuel filter is located, carry a spare and any special tool needed to change it. Any rig built in the last quarter century or so uses some type of fuel injection and the system is pressurized, so loosen the gas cap first. I replaced the fuel filter on a '97 Suburban in Glacier Park. And one more on fuel; all newer vehicles have the fuel pump in the gas tank and the fuel cools the pump, so don't run too low as it can shorten pump life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Great advice.

 

I’ll add that a winch, spare tire and a chain saw in the backcountry are essential. Along with some hand tools (shovel and axe), and basic wrench set.

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Airdale
17 minutes ago, norseman said:

 

Great advice.

 

I’ll add that a winch, spare tire and a chain saw in the backcountry are essential. Along with some hand tools (shovel and axe), and basic wrench set.

 

Amen brother! I was thinking of starting a separate thread on just this subject. What say you?

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SWWASAS

Good stuff to have.      Instead of the ax I carry a wood pruning saw to cut firewood if I get stuck out.   I only carry enough water for planned drinking.    Since stream water in Western Washington is plentiful,  I carry a back packing filter to filter out microorganisms so can drink stream water if I run out of bottled water because of a break down.   And because you simply cannot think of everything,   if you can afford a personal locator beacon, having one of those that I can set off should I have a breakdown or slip off a road is comforting.  Cell phone coverage is not common.     I have literally been run off a road by a A hole logging truck driver.   

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norseman
6 minutes ago, Airdale said:

 

Amen brother! I was thinking of starting a separate thread on just this subject. What say you?

 

Perfect!

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Lamplight

My wife and I use a 95 Mitsubishi Montero SR for camping and getting back in the mountains. It has locking center and rear differentials and fits 33 inch tires with no modifications, which has gotten us out of some gnarly situations a few times. We also removed all the back seats and built a sleeping platform.  It's the perfect vehicle for us, but probably too small inside if you're over 5'9". It can also be a little tricky to find parts. Honestly, the easiest trucks to find parts for will probably be the American makes and Toyota. 

 

We use our 4 wheel drive often and rarely NEED the locking differentials, but when things get really rough they're a god-send. Our vehicle's basic 4wd mode is essentially all wheel drive, and it gets used pretty much any time we're off pavement. Most of the time this basic 4wd is plenty; having the ground clearance is actually probably more important for us. Grippy tires help significantly.

 

We also always carry an axe, water filter, a pretty thorough tool kit, water jugs, means for starting a fire easily, a first aid kit, some basic supplies like hoses, hose clamps, antifreeze, oil, gorilla tape, etc. One final piece of gear that we never leave home without if we're going into the mountains: our daypacks. If you break down and have to walk, it's really convenient to have a good backpack for carrying water and food.

0707172032_HDR~2.jpg

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norseman

Nice picture!

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Lamplight
1 hour ago, norseman said:

Nice picture!

Thanks! 

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NatFoot
On 6/9/2018 at 6:19 PM, Lamplight said:

Thanks! 

Could you show pics of the inside with the sleeping platform?

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Lamplight
On 6/12/2018 at 0:25 PM, NatFoot said:

Could you show pics of the inside with the sleeping platform?

We use a rug to protect the mattress and bedding when we're not sleeping. When it's time for bed we just roll up the rug and set it on top of the car (or underneath if it's raining)

0507171301_HDR.jpg

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