I find myself apologizing for being too busy to post so often anymore that it seems to have lost it’s meaning.  The thing is, I am truly sorry that I don’t update this site as much as I should, but I’m out experiencing life instead of hunching over a laptop at a desk.  And for that, I make no apology.  To be sure, I’d rather we were all out living life instead of wasting bandwidth reading my silly words.  Alas, this is the world in which we live, and it doesn’t look like this “internet” fad is going to fade away any time soon.  So with that out of the way, here’s why I haven’t written you in so long…

The Jeep is practically falling apart.  Not in a -things are literally falling off of the Jeep as I drive- kind of way, but there are rattles and squeaks and all the things that we retentive mechanic types dread to hear.  And having been off galavanting around the southwest the last few weeks, I haven’t had any time to really chase any of them down.  So naturally, driving the Jeep on a dirt road sounds rather similar to the Apollo 13 landing module during re-entry.

With the same reaction when we arrive safely...

With the same reaction when we arrive safely…

Our other vehicle, a 5th gen Maxima, recently had a fit and decided to break down, after 185000 trouble free miles.  After an exhaustive search, I finally found that engine coolant had corroded the Idle Air Control Valve to the point of shorting the wires to the ECU, creating a no-start condition.  Fortunately the ECU didn’t get fried (unlike many others who have had this problem), and it was a “relatively” inexpensive repair.  The other upside is that I got a rude awakening about how difficult cars can be to work on.  I had forgotten how much working on my Jeep has spoiled me.  I had gone off-track, focusing on Jeep this and Jeep that to the point of being blind to almost all the rest of the Autoverse.  Hopefully this will help me to refocus the blog, because it’s become rather a mess anymore. I don’t even know what to write about what…

At any rate, once the IAC was replaced (and that stupid redundant coolant loop bypassed), the max was running tip-top again, and all was well at the homestead.  See, the max was one of the main reasons that I had so little free time, what with taking the lady to and from work every day, and then diagnosing (fighting with) the car in my spare time…  Now that it’s running again, I have shop space and time to start figuring out what’s rattling my Jeep and my teeth apart whenever I drive.

And there's been SOOOO much driving...

And there’s been SOOOO much driving…

It hasn’t been all gloom and doom though.  I’ve spent a couple weekends out camping recently, and it was good to remember why I do what I do.  I tend to get so laser focused on fixing or upgrading a thing, that I tend to forget that it’s all about getting out in the wild and fending for one’s self.  I never did much camping as a kid, partly as a result of where I grew up, but also  because mine just wasn’t really a camping family.  So now that I’m a responsible adult (lol), I get to overcompensate by sleeping and pooping in the forest a few times a year.  This trip was especially cool since I got to go with some friends from work, and thus wasn’t subjected to the typical conversations that happen when Jeep-folk get together (not saying I’m not the worst offender, haha).  We went to camp on the Mogollon rim, one of my favorite spots in northern Arizona.  Lakes, rivers, and a sheer cliff drop just a few hundred feet away.  It happened to rain for about half of the trip, but it didn’t slow me down a bit.  I feel like the worse the weather, the more I thrive…  By Saturday afternoon though, it was clear, cloudless, and gorgeous.  Maybe I should go back this weekend…

How it's done.

How it’s done.

There are no signs of the summer slowing down either.  We’ve got a trip to Texas, a trip to Colorado, and a trip to California, all in the next few months.  Not to mention tons of work, including a pinion bearing that’s gone TU on the front diff, and a trashed wheel bearing on the rear axle.  I fear the labrat may be getting some junkyard axles just to survive until I start building the new ones.  But that’s another story for another day, friends.  For now, I’ll keep wheeling it til it won’t wheel no more.

As always though, no matter how busy I get, I will always keep forgetting all the great blog ideas I come up with for you.  That’s my promise.

Peace homies

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