Four Wheeler October 2020

Get Four Wheeler digital magazine subscription today for a wide range of informative articles including adventure travel in the US and abroad, domestic trail rides and event coverage, comprehensive new-vehicle testing and evaluation, technical articles designed for four-wheelers of all abilities, as well as how-to installation articles, equipment guides and comprehensive product testing.

United States
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min
have you ever seen a farm that grows super duty 4x4s?

I like wandering around my nephew’s northern Illinois farm because there’s always interesting things to see. The reason there’s always interesting things to see is because he likes to buy broken stuff, repair it, and use it. My nephew, Troy, is on my wife’s side of the family. He purchased my father-in-law’s farm and, like his grandpa, is supporting his family by farming. Troy has many traits of my late father-in-law, including that he’s a man of few words, very hard working, and frugal. Maybe that frugality is why there’s so many old Super Duties scattered around his farm. Why buy a new $80,000 Super Duty when you can buy a broken one for cheap and get it running? And if you can buy one for cheap, well, is one ever…

3 min
is your 4x4 destined to be a family heirloom?

Keepsakes are interesting things. Sometimes they’re useful contrivances and sometimes they serve no purpose other than to elicit a memory. But sometimes they’re the vehicle through which memories are made. And yes, that was an intentional pun because for me and my family, we seem to make the majority of our memories via motorized cars, trucks, Jeeps, and boats. It should come as no surprise considering what my day job is, but my kids have grown up with a half-dozen 4x4s of all sorts in the driveway and didn’t believe me at first when I told them not every kid in their school went off-roading in Moab and hard-core trails around the country on a regular basis. And while each of my four kids has their personal favorite of all…

5 min

TELLURIDE MEMORIES Thanks for bringing back some fond memories with your February editorial (Firing Order, Feb. ’19). I, too, participated in a Telluride Rotary 4x4 Tour back in 1991. It was the summer before my senior year of high school when I saw an advertisement for the event. Since I lived in Montrose, which is not far from the event, I decided I wanted to go. I called up my buddy Todd and he said he was in. With both of us being 18 years old, we barely met the age requirement! When the weekend finally came around we loaded up my stock ’77 FJ40 riding on big-for-the-time 32-inch BFG mudders and hit the road for a weekend of camping and wheeling with “adults.” We were definitely the youngest ones attending the…

8 min
rpm automotive news

FIVE QUESTIONS FOR KEY AUTOMOTIVE EXPERTS As we went to press with this edition of RPM, the world was still dealing with the pandemic called COVID-19, aka coronavirus. Like you, we at Four Wheeler had to modify our norm in many ways. We had severe disappointment over the cancellation of the annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, and found ourselves doing this thing called “squats” to avoid the Freshman 15 from working at home with 40 loaves of banana bread as our rotating cubicle mate. Automakers were also affected by the lockdown, switching from mass production of vehicles to producing life-saving equipment, like ventilators and PPE equipment. Since life became different, RPM is also temporarily different for the next few issues. Rather than report on the industry’s happenings since there was very little…

4 min
parts rack

LIFTED GLADIATOR Engineers at ICON Vehicle Dynamics have everything you need to lift your ’20-up Jeep Gladiator. The company’s 2.5-inch suspension system is said to increase wheel travel by 33 percent in the front and 23 percent in the rear and is also said to make room for up to 35-inch tires. The system includes dual-rate front coil springs, triple-rate rear coil springs, Compression Damping Control (CDC) Valve shocks, along with front and rear links. ICON says it put its Gladiator suspension system through more than 1,000 miles of off-road testing to verify its robustness. INFO: ICON Vehicle Dynamics, 951/689-4266, IMPROVED COOLER It’s said to keep ice for longer than the outgoing model, along with a decrease in weight and an increase in interior volume. The Yeti Roadie 24 features the company’s…

9 min
mountain caddy

“The only reason I got this truck in the first place was to tow my Toyota race truck around,” explained Matt Swithenbank. His thesis statement for the Ford evolved into wanting to have a truck that he could take anywhere and do anything with. Whether the task was hard-core snow wheeling in northern California, towing his trailer, journeying across Utah or the Baja Peninsula, or chasing desert races, the pickup had to be ready. “I originally traded my ’00 4Runner for it when it was only a mostly stock ’94 F-250 IDI turbodiesel with the E40D transmission.” At the time, the truck ran around with a Dana 50 Twin-Traction Beam front suspension, a four-inch lift, and 35-inch tires. “Within the first year of owning the truck I was having issues with…