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Thread: The Cactus Red mod thread.

  1. #101
    gearhead
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    Patch came with upgraded bulbs in it's back-up lights (long before LED's were available), prolonged use started to melt the lenses so I changed them back to stock. Just as well as the stock lens and reflector underscore alanh's conclusion with their uselessness as an illumination source.

    It has become std. for me to run a large gauge (#10 or bigger) battery hot wire to the rear bumper or nearly so. I do this off a breaker in the in the engine bay. Along the wire's length I put in isolated studs (junkyard mid 70's GM cars) at strategic spots for tap-in points. A simple relay tapped into the reverse light circuit for it's trigger drives a clear lens fog light powered off the rear-most isolated stud. With no spare under there the fog light can sit only about a foot aft of the rear axle where it is well protected, yet still able to cast significant light to the rear. More than once I've used it to light up a dark camp.
    thom

    Where does that road go?

  2. #102
    The FABLD8 Rockcrawler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crawler#976 View Post
    After many trips thru the brush and trees where the magnetic mount antenna got knocked off the roof, I decided to fix it permanently. I considered several options including hard mounting the antenna via a thru the roof NMO mount, but as tall as the Power Wagon is, I figured it would only be a matter of time before I either damaged the mount and bent the sheet metal. The second option was a fender/hood mount. I knew Id loose some performance, but decided the benefits outweighed the decreased range and clarity.

    Kyle has a similar setup on his Dodge 2500, so that got me searching for the mount. I found one in the Larsen catalog on page 192.

    http://www.larsen-antennas.com/docfiles/ASB8/Mounts.pdf

    The Larsen TMB-34D is made for late model Dodge trucks. HRO (Ham Radio Outlet) had the mount in stock and also sent a NMO cable without the PL-259 connector attached. That allowed me to snake the cable thru a small hole thru the grommet, and conceal the cable under the door sill moulding. I routed it thru the same slit in the carpet I used for running power to the radio in the original install. After soldering on the PL-259 connector and attaching the new cable, the radio worked fine. I can still get out to Flagstaff OK (roughly 50 miles line of sight) with a little bacon sizzle. The ground plane is not optimal, but not having to stop and reattach the mag mount will be really nice.
    For those interested, my mount is from Firestik in Phoenix. It looks very similar to the larsen mount that Mark found. I have 1 mount on each side of the truck. 2 meter on the passenger side and CB on the driver's side. Something else that I just learned from Al is that you can put shrink tubing around the center coil of the antenna to prevent it from catching on tree branches... Simple and inexpensive fix! Ingenious!

    Kyle
    1984 Jeep $crambler
    2004 Dodge Ram Quad Cab 4x4 6spd Diesel 305/555
    2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel - On order

    "Paved Roads: Another example of wasteful government spending."

  3. #103
    Graduate Member AlWalter's Avatar
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    San Diego, CA
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    I can't take credit for that fix, it goes to Michael Vermette.
    Always ready to go.
    KG6SGM

  4. #104
    The FABLD8 Rockcrawler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlWalter View Post
    I can't take credit for that fix, it goes to Michael Vermette.
    Thanks for chiming in Al. I couldn't remember who you said you picked that up from. Now I just need to find myself some shrink tube big enough to go around the coil.
    1984 Jeep $crambler
    2004 Dodge Ram Quad Cab 4x4 6spd Diesel 305/555
    2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel - On order

    "Paved Roads: Another example of wasteful government spending."

  5. #105
    quasi-modo crawler#976's Avatar
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    Bent up the factory bumper a few times over the years, so it was time to replace it. My choice was from Backwoods Bumper http://backwoodsbumpers.com/

    It came in damaged, so I stripped it, and coated it with Duplicolor rattle can bed liner. Came out nice!


  6. #106
    12V Fridge Enthusiast BajaTaco's Avatar
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    Tucson, AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by crawler#976 View Post
    Bent up the factory bumper a few times over the years, so it was time to replace it. My choice was from Backwoods Bumper http://backwoodsbumpers.com/

    It came in damaged, so I stripped it, and coated it with Duplicolor rattle can bed liner. Came out nice!
    That's a great looking bumper, Mark. Nice!
    BAJATACO.COM
    Toyota light expedition vehicle
    Adventure reports
    Lots of Photos

  7. #107
    quasi-modo crawler#976's Avatar
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    Well, the tale of Cactus Red's adventures has come to a close. We hauled our Outdoors RV 24KTS up to Montana this summer with the ol' Waggy, and while it did the job flawlessly, it's absolutely horrible in the MPG and power departments. The trailer is 6860 lbs dry, and with dual golf cart 6V batteries, two 30 Lb propane tanks, our "stuff", and a half load of water (40 of the 80 gallon capacity), we tipped the scales at +8500 lbs. It's also very tall on the factory 235/80-16 tires. So between weight and the parachute effect we got about 5.5 MPG for the 4100 mile trip.

    Worst day was from Rifle Gap State Park to Sitting Bull GC near Meadow Lark Lake, WY. High headwinds and crossing the Continental Divide numerous times netted 4.3 MPG over the 488 miles traveled. We stopped for fuel every 120 miles or so, and were way behind schedule due to barely making 55 MPH into the winds. Wanted to go thru Lander and see if we could find KC, but took the Sweetwater cutoff to save some time. Even at that it was a 13 hour day.

    So, we sold Cactus Red after finding a very lightly used 2017 Megacab 4x4 Cummins Laramie 2500. It only had 12360 miles on it in 18 months of use. It came with the shell, side steps, bed liner spray, and a full BedRug kit. It makes towing easy with 375 HP/800 Ft/Lbs torque, and gets 10+ MPG doing so. It also gets great MPG empty for an 8200 Lb truck - 15.5 in town 18 to 20 highway.

    The new and old rigs:

    Mark


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    Last edited by crawler#976; 12-13-2018 at 11:42AM.


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