4th ORT – SMORR 10-15-11
Well we made it down to SMORR again for their “SMORR in the fall” event. Which mostly just entailed us wandering around SMORR again. The truck did fairly well, but it was not without some downfalls.
For the better part of the day, the wife and I followed the rasin:
And Casper the invisible Cherokee:
At some point after lunch, Casper bugged out and we started playing around with a couple of buggy type things. They were a real nice crew to run around with even though they way outclassed my junk:
Unfortunately, not too long after taking those photos, my junk broke yet again. We were literally heading out of the park on an easy trail when I managed to shear 2 of the 3 5/8 bolts that were holding on my high steer arm on the passenger side knuckle:
The fellow with the black buggy was nice enough to run back to camp and grab his tow rig to drag my junk back to the campground. I’m very thankful for that as I was somewhat dead in the water with next to no steering.
But now I had a problem, we had driven the truck down to SMORR, so the next day we had to drive the 3.5 hours back to St. Louis to borrow a tow rig and trailer, then turn around and pick up the dead truck in SMORR, then turn around yet a gain and run the whole shebang back up to St. Louis. Easy as pie right?
But I’m noticing nothing is ever easy in my world, as about 20 miles away from home, the tow rig threw off the serpentine belt off. Of course this meant we were rolling down the highway loaded at about 19k lbs with no power steering (no biggie), No breaks due to no hydro boost (that sucks), and no trailer breaks as the alt wasn’t putting out enough juice to fire the trailer brakes (That really sucked), and an overheating truck. So we wound up limping the truck off the interstate into the downtown Cahokia area. Which if you know the area, its not really a place you want to break down at night.
Thankfully, we knew another person that had a goose setup, so he came to rescue the Ranger and trailer while the dodge got towed back home
I took a half day off of work to fix what died on the Dodge. Turns out the stock water pump on these guys likes to die at about 170k miles on the odometer. And when I say die, I mean really die:
So after getting that fixed, the whole assembly finally made it home, 48 hours after the initial break
I’m pretty sure the high steer failure was due to the bolts loosening up and just letting go (had hit a rock when they broke). So it was just crap luck on my part. I had always said I’d rock the 44 until it gave me too much trouble and at this point I think its given me too much trouble so this is going in its place:
A ’78 king pin 60, I hope to get it torn down this weekend to find out what it’ll need.
So for those who are keeping track, out of the last 5 off road trips:
-1 trip that I was able to wheel without any issues
-2 trips that there were some sort of major issues (body damage, ball joints, etc) but I was able to drive the truck home
-2 trips where the truck had to come home on a trailer
Yeah, my ratio is really in the shitter right now…
There’s more photos in this link:
Link to slide show