Rescue Green has new shoes. They are the same size as the last ones, but look about a size bigger. They are Goodyear Wrangler MTR with Kevlar. Those tires were pricey, but from the reviews I read (in JP magazine, for example-their latest edition has an article featuring tire comparisons and ratings), they are great. So far they are great on the road in dry weather and in rain. They really make the XJ look complete…almost…

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Goodyear Wrangler MTR with Kevlar…

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White walls out…wasn’t quite sure about that, but I like it now…

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Looks great!

Another thing I did was replace the front sway bar bushings. I bought polyurethane ones at NAPA for just over $20 a pair, and installed them in 15 minutes. Easy work. When I initially tried to remove the four bolts, they would NOT budge. I remembered I had bought PB Blaster and dug it out of the back. Five minutes after I sprayed it on at the base of the bolts, they came right off. That stuff is amazing. Anyway, new bushings on; I went for a test drive. The difference was AMAZING! I kick myself for not having done that earlier. My cavity fillings don’t fall out of my teeth when I hit a bump anymore. Rescue really is a pleasure to drive now.

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Polyurethane sway bar bushings from NAPA…

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These are the old ones I removed. They are probably the original. They are distorted and worn…

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26mm bushings installed…

CAUTION: if you have an XJ and you want to change your front sway bar bushings, make sure you measure the width of your sway bar first…in millimeters. Apparently, they come in various widths…even for the same year XJ. Seems like Chrysler had a pile of extras laying around from various models of other Jeeps, and decided to install all those on the XJ.

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Posted: February 7, 2012 in Uncategorized
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The XJ bares more stickers

Posted: January 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

Well folks, I added some stickers again.  To be exact; I removed some, and added some.  I added the “Rescue” badging sticker on both sides, where you would normally find the model identifier (like “Wrangler”).  I’m still not quite sure if it will stay on there forever…we’ll see.  I added some stickers of locations I’ve visited and changed some of the ones that were already on there with better ones.  No! I am not going sticker crazy.  At least I don’t think so…yet.  I do think the XJ looks better now. 

Stickers on the Driver's side that depict locations visited...Rescue badging sticker as well...

 
On the passenger’s side, I’ve added: Jeep Garage (Jeepgarage.org), North American XJ Association (NAXJA.org), and OK Offroad…

...and passenger's side which includes clubs, forums, and components...Rescue badging as well...

 

THIS is sticker crazy!!!!!

 
Wow…
 
 

Interior Mods continue

Posted: January 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

The interior modification bug continues to bite.  I suppose this happens with every Jeep owner.  I like the clean and organized look.  I haven’t really added too many storage modifications lately.  However, prior to posting my “Storage Modification” post, I bought Husky floor liners.  My XJ has no carpet, just spray-on bed liner, so I wanted some insulation as well as a little sound dampening on my floors.  Anyway, once I installed them, I was relatively pleased.  I had hoped that they would be a little thicker than they are because they do seem a little flimsy in some respects.  For example, the raised borders of the mats (primarily the rear cargo one), appears to be susceptible to warping/bending fairly easily.  It also seemd like the rear cargo liner didn’t quite fit exactly as I would have imagined.  I was hoping it would have seemed a little bit more customized for each year/model.  The instructions stipulated that some cutting of the border of the front liner/mat, may be necessary to accomodate for the driver’s seat mounting bracket-ther was no way I was going to take the chance and cut some of the liner off.  Not exactly what I was hoping for based on the cost.  Don’t get me wrong; overall, I am fairly satisfied.  The rear passenger ones are very nice and fit perfectly.  Check out the pictures below…

Driver's side floor liner-the one the instructions said may need cutting...

 

Passenger's side liner. Fits very well...

 

Rear seat floor liner. The best fitting Husky liner...

 

Rear cargo area. Didn't seem to fit exactly....still very functional though...

 
 
Recently, I added another Handle from which to hang odds and ends off of, as well as a “Clear Canister” container that is available at Home Depot.  They resemble the plastic tubes in which you would deposit cash or a check at the bank in the drive-through with.  Remember? You would stick your document in a tube, place in the box, push a button, and watch the tube shoot to the teller inside the bank.  So, I liked the concept and mounted it on the rear panel, just beside the hatch opening.  I keep small screws and the such in it.  It comes with a mounting bracket and two screws…really easy.  Those canisters are also modular; which means you can “nest” (as the manufacturers instructions calls it) them together.  Look at the picture above, just above and to the left of the black bag…
 
I also found the map pouch I used to wear on my Body Armor, and decided it would be useful in the XJ.  I mounted it just beside the transfer case shifter on the molding on the driver’s side.  I keep a Surfire, a knife, and a tire gauge in it.  It is in a perfect location.  The pouch was part of the MOLLE system family of pouches, so it was a challenge to find a way of mounting it.  I finally found a tactical eyeglass holder strap (probably not the right nomenclature).  I mounted that with two screws and snapped the map pouch on the strap.  It’s nice and secure. 
 
 

Map pouch I used to have on my body armor. I kept the IR flag on it. Holds a knife, flashlight and tire gauge...

 
 
More to come.  I’m always on the lookout for more easy and affordable ways to store and arrange things in the XJ…
 
 
 

Rescue

Posted: December 24, 2011 in Uncategorized
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So it turns out, the Rescue Green color became famous when the concept vehicle; the Jeep® Rescue was shown as a concept vehicle for Jeep in 2004.  It also turns out that the Jeep® Unlimited; the 4-door Wrangler JK was the result of the Rescue.  I think it’s fairly adequate to have named that green Rescue Green. Very fitting.  Of particular interest, is the badging of the vehicle; a black cross on a red background with the word “RESCUE” written horizontally.  The badge was located in the same place as the “Sahara” badge was located on the older TJ and the new JK. 

The articles I found were interesting since it ties in to the color of my XJ.  I’m sure mine is nowhere near as capable as the Rescue itself, since the Rescue was reported to have been outfitted with infrared cameras, undercarriage cameras, satellite telephone, 37″ tires, etc… However, while I was perusing the internet, looking at the links on “Jeep Directory”, I found “OKoffroad”, and noticed they were selling 6″ and 11″ “RESCUE” decals.  Of course, I ordered a couple…

 
 

Feast your eyes on this...

 
 

And this...

 
 

Rescue Badge

 
 
I don’t know about you, but I know I would trade just about anything in (just not my XJ) for a Rescue if they ever went into production…

First, let me say that “Kiplinger” has found that the Jeep Cherokee XJ, is one of the top ten cars that “refuse to die”. That’s great news! I will relay that to my 12 year old 4.0 as a reminder it’s not allowed to let me down. Actually, I think what they meant was that it endures on, even though it isn’t made any more. Anyway, I found the article on CNN’s website.

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Here is a screen shot of the article…

Second, I wanted to share the photos I had kept of all the XJs I had selected as “maybes” when I was looking for one to buy. I had reviewed and reviewed many many eBay and Craigslist posts and pictures before I decided to buy mine. Of course, some were great, but just too far. Others I liked, but as I tried to whittle down the number of contending XJs, I would re-read the ads. More then a few times, as I re-read these adds, I noticed things I hadn’t before, that I didn’t want to deal with. A few times I fell upon the words “death wobble”, which I certainly didn’t want to put up with. So, that rig would get deleted from the group of contenders. Others were simply too far for me to get if I did buy it. Mine was in Pennsylvania, which wasn’t too far and took most of a day to pick up and bring back. The photos below are some of the past contenders. I thought I’d keep these because they were just nice rigs/Jeeps.

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This one is really nice. I like the snorkel…and of course; the stickers…

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This one is nice and seems capable…

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This one I liked as well. Way too far to pick up-California…

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This one is one of my favorite. Just seems solid…20111220-151842.jpg

I liked this one too. Particularly the winch and bumper…

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I like how this one looks clean and simple. No fender trimming which is rare…

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I really like the rear quarter panel guards on this one…and the color…

There were more, of course, but these kind of sum it up. I wanted an XJ that already had a lift and a roof rack. I had a lift installed on an ’04 Wrangler, and it was a pain. I just wanted one that was already done, and done right.
I still do a search every now and then to see what’s out there, and there seem to be a lot less of them for sale nowadays.

Disclaimer: if you find your XJ here, it was probably on eBay in the past (or still is), and I liked it enough to keep one of the photos. Sorry I didn’t do the research to ask for permission, but instead figured that posting it, was permission enough. In conclusion, if you find your Cherokee here; nice rig!

Posted: December 20, 2011 in Uncategorized
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So I’ve added some stickers since the last “Stickers” post of October. I added the Jeepz one of my favorite), CherokeeForum.com, Jeepforum.com, Cherokeetalk.com, Military Jeepers, Northern Virginia Jeepers stickers, as well as ProComp, Rough Country, and Smittybilt (my favorite). I love the way the window looks with all of them there. I have a few more I am waiting for, like the North American XJ Association one, and the XJTalk one. I hope it doesn’t look like I’ve gone crazy with stickers. I used to not want to have any… wow, how that changed.
Most of these, I got for free just by asking for them. Some came with the membership, like the Military Jeepers and Northern Virginia Jeepers stickers. The Hi-Jack one came with the actual Hi-Lift. All of the gear stickers are there because I have an actual item of the company, like the ProComp one. I’m waiting to see if JP magazine will send me one. The other side has stickers of places I’ve been to, and hasn’t changed since October…

New Stickers added to Rescue Green

Posted: December 16, 2011 in Uncategorized
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So, like most who own a Jeep and are slightly fanatical about it, I realized I needed to have more things accessible in the storage compartment (trunk), and needed to de-clutter the storage box I was putting everything in. While at Home Depot earlier this week, I observed some handles that are made for gate doors. I thought they might be useful to hang things off of in the back of the XJ. I already had a Maglite flashlight I needed to mount in the back and figured something needed to be done to the other side. I bought a couple of those gate handles, and went home. Yesterday, I mounted the flashlight on the driver’s side rear panel just below the window in the storage compartment, and the handles on the opposite side. I must say; I was fairly proud of myself. It did what I wanted, and it looked cool. I’ll probably end up installing at least one more, without going crazy.

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Said item bought at Home Depot. Cheap too…

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Fairly simple operation: four screws and some elbow grease, and it is screwed in like it belongs there…

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Now, I can hang whatever I want off them. On one, I hung a small pouch with a MOLLE system…

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On the other, a bungee and a pair of Mechanix gloves, leaving room for more…

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On the other side (driver’s side), I installed my flashlight…

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The only hard part was ensuring the mounts were straight. Now, my flashlight is easily accessible…and it looks cool…

Posted: December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized
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It’s almost Christmas. We decided to go for a walk and look at the Christmas decorations and wreaths people had adorned their homes’ entrances with, and take pictures. We were not disappointed. There was quite a selection. For the most part, they were all very tasteful. It never ceases to impress me how patriotic Old Town is. Flags and Christmas decorations alike graced nearly every home and we quickly became immune to the typical decorations – they had to really stand out to catch our eyes. How wonderful it is to have such a selection of beautiful decorations that we could be choosy about the eye candy. What does this have to do with Jeeps, you say? Well, just you wait, we’re getting there. Plus…aren’t Jeeps and Christmas in America pretty much synonymous?

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The first of many we came across…

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Patriotic, festive holiday plants…

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Holiday and Patriotic spirit throughout…

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Perfect combination…

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Imagination certainly not on vacation here. Definitely original. One of our favorite…

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Very naturesque…

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Colorful and quaint…

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Gold leaf apple wreath…yummy…

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Cornucopia o’ wreaths for sale on the sidewalk…

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Healthy wreath of pineapple, oranges, and apple. Amazing…

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AWESOME Rubix cube Jeep YJ. I LOVE IT!

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Another picture to feast your eyes on. I want it…

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Rare looking Land Rover Defender, British tags and all. Very nice…

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Not even five minutes later, a few blocks down the street; another one…

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…And how can you walk past a beautiful CJ-7 without taking a picture?

After this delightful walk during which we witnessed the Old Town holiday spirit, and feasted our eyes on nice Jeeps as well as other nice vehicles, we couldn’t help but put a wreath on the front of our respective Jeeps.

Posted: December 15, 2011 in Uncategorized
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Well, like many others, Thanksgiving was out of town for us. We made the choice to travel in a Jeep Unlimited JK, rather than good ol’ Rescue Green, since there was an eight hour drive involved. It is always a nice drive, either there or back, particularly when we do it during daylight hours. There are so many examples of pristine nature as you head out further and further from Washington. We made sure to bring the camera this time, since we’d forgotten it so many other times. Thanksgiving was like it was supposed to be; happy, loud, filling, busy, and memorable. We also drove around quite a bit while there, which is always a pleasure because there really isn’t another state quite like Tennessee. The Knoxville region is particularly enchanting for us. There is a mixture of everything: beautiful mansion-like homes, horse farms, small quaint log homes in more rural areas, and lush green nature. There is-to me-an unusual amount of abandoned homes. Some of these seem Iike they could date back to the Civil War era, or late nineteenth century.

One of my favorite things to enjoy there is the abundance of off-road garages and repair shops (Skidrow Offroad, Dan’s Customs and Repair), junk yards (like Hill-billy Auto Parts), auto parts stores (Advance Auto Parts-my favorite)and family owned local dealerships that always have one or two lifted Jeeps in their lot. The area is just simply “Jeep-friendly”. In fact, during one of our many previous visits, we drove past a junk yard with vehicles in various stages of rusting, that had a whole row of old Jeeps. There were Willys Jeeps, CJ2s, CJ5s, CJ7s and CJ8s, from what I could recognize. After the urge of wanting to buy each and every one of them went away, I wanted to photograph them. Unfortunately I didn’t have a camera handy at the time. Now, as luck would find it, we can’t any more (find it that is-the lot, not the camera), which is very unfortunate. Ever since then, we dedicate at least one drive to looking for it, so far to no avail. Anyway, we made sure to remember to not forget (yep, that’s what it takes) to bring the camera for Thanksgiving. we photographed nice scenery an abandoned old lifted pick-up truck, a salvage yard advertisement in Knoxville, a street of abandoned buildings in Knoxville, an old highway tarring vehicle (I think…maybe), and an old abandoned house. We hope everyone enjoyed Thanksgiving like we did.

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Old Chevy or Ford pick-up with a lift…

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Old abandoned house not far from the pick-up…

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Knox Rail Salvage in Knoxville. Looks like an old water tank from the wild west…

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Abandoned Knoxville industrial building…

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Again…

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Crack…this way…

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Beautiful Tennessee lake view…

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A portion of (valve maybe) the paver concrete thingy…vehicle

Posted: December 8, 2011 in Uncategorized
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So one of the things I really wanted when I was looking to buy another Jeep, was for it to have most of the mods done to it already. When I found this one, I remember really liking the roof rack. It’s a Kargo Master Safari. As silly as it sounds, I have always wanted one. There you have it. Then, I ordered a Hi-Lift Extreme jack and mounting hardware for it, and a shovel. The Hi-Lift Extreme is a monster. Nothing like the original Hi-Lift. I love the quality. Verrry heavy. I drove around with the jack in the back seat until the hardware (on backorder) came in from Quadratec. I installed it at night in the parking lot, because I just couldn’t wait. It now sits perfectly on the passenger side of the roof rack with the shovel (which took me forever to pick out) on the driver side.

Here is the Hi-Lift with the free neoprene cover.

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Here is the shovel.

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Posted: October 24, 2011 in Uncategorized
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