THE JUNKY, THE JUSTIFIER AND THE ASK-HOLE

By Grant Spolander   Three guys walk into a car dealership…   The first bloke spends 2-hours talking about tyres and suspension; he then orders a Jeep Wrangler and blows another $30k on accessories. He transfers the money without breaking a sweat, despite borrowing...

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MUD BOGGING & RECOVERY TRACKS – 4X4 EQUIPT

MUD BOGGING IN NAMIBIA Words by: Grant Spolander   I once visited this 5-star safari lodge in Namibia… the sort of place that had Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie on their guest list. I was on assignment at the time, driving a Land Rover Discovery 4 and...

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SOUTH AFRICA vs AUSTRALIA – 4×4 community

HOW KANGAROOS HELPED SHAPE SOUTH AFRICA'S 4X4 MARKET By: Grant Spolander   “Blimey mate, that one sprayed all over the bull-bar!”   I wish I could tell you that the above statement refers to muddy puddles, but it doesn’t. We were about 3 000 km into our...

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THE LEADING CAUSE OF RADIATOR FAILURE

  “Can I check your oil and water?” A common question heard at many service stations; but don’t be fooled − that little top-up could be doing your vehicle’s engine more harm than good. It’s been said that at least 33% of all vehicle breakdowns are...

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15 ESSENTIAL TIRE DEFLATION TIPS

  The subject of tire deflation is a controversial one. With so many variables at play, many off-road enthusiasts battle to agree on figures. What’s more, with a near-infinite number of terrain types on offer, it’s hard to know what pressure is right for...

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5 REASONS WHY YOUR TURBOCHARGER MAY FAIL

  If you bought your turbo diesel second-hand, or if the engine’s clocked up more than 150 000 km, you may be concerned about how much longer the turbo will last. That said, here are 5 reasons why diesel turbochargers commonly fail…   1) Carbon Over time,...

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WHY YOUR OFF-ROAD TYRES ARE NOT BALANCING

  Written by Grant Spolander. Originally published on Cooper Tyres website.   Last month, we talked about how a number of all-terrains are masquerading as off-road tyres, when in fact their carcass construction is no different to that of a road-biased tyre. However,...

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MAKE YOUR TYRES 1000% MORE PUNCTURE RESISTANT

    The subject of tyre deflation is surprisingly contentious; folks seldom agree on figures, and in some cases I’ve even heard 4x4 training academies arguing that you shouldn’t do it! But before we get into that, here are the top 4 reasons why you should: 1) DEATH 2)...

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WHY YOUR ALL-TERRAIN IS PROBABLY NOT AN OFF-ROAD TYRE

The term ‘‘all-terrain,’’ or AT, is commonly used by tyre manufacturers to describe their off-road products. Unfortunately, this well-known phrase tells only half the story - and is a bit misleading.   Sure, traction is vitally important for any off-road tyre; but...

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SHOULD I BE FITTING AN OIL COOLER TO MY 4X4?

  I own a ’96 Prado 3.0 A/T. The Cruiser's got roughly 285 000 km on the clock and is still going strong. I've spent sometime browsing forum pages, where I've noticed a number of vehicle owners complaining about the fact that their transmission oil cooler is mounted...

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WHY IS MY MITSUBISHI COLT CUTTING OUT?

    I own a 2006 Mitsubishi Colt 3.0-litre V6 DC that's done 185 000 km without ever missing a service. However, after a recent service I noticed that the vehicle's fuel filter hadn't been changed. Lately, my Colt has had this strange cut-out / surge. In my opinion,...

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WHY IS MY JEEP RUBICON’S DIFF-LOCK NOT ENGAGING?

JEEP LOCKER PROBLEMS QUESTION: I recently bought a ’10 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, but every time I drive a trail people tell me the front locker isn’t engaging. This would explain why the diff-lock light keeps flashing. So, after fishing around, I’ve found a lot of online...

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WHY ARE ROOF RACKS SO EXPENSIVE & ARE THEY WORTH IT

I’ve got a few questions about roof racks. I’m looking to buy one pretty soon, but I’m not sure what to look out for. Some racks seem to be a bit more expensive than others, and I’m wondering why that should be. So with that, what makes one rack more expensive than...

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WHICH IS BEST, A NYLON OR CANVAS TENT?

QUESTION My 2017 resolution is to camp more, but with that comes a host of expensive camping gear that I need to buy, starting with a tent. We’re a family of four, and because we need everything from chairs to frying pans, I’d like to save money where I can. A nylon...

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DOES AFTERMARKET 4X4 SUSPENSION OFFER ANY REAL BENEFITS?

  I read your recent post about increasing a Cruiser’s suspension flex; I personally drive a ’13 Hilux D4D with stock standard suspension. A lot of people have been telling me that I should upgrade my Hilux’s suspension, but I find it hard to believe that the...

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HOW DO I GET MY LAND CRUISER TO FLEX MORE?

I own a Land Cruiser 75 Series on which I’ve done some mods. I’ve lifted the body by 64mm but lowered the suspension by 50mm; the Cruiser now stands a little higher than standard but the suspension is able to flex much more in both directions. Secondly, I’ve fitted...

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IS MY NISSAN PATROL’S UNCHIP BADLY TUNED?

I own a ’03 Nissan Patrol 3.0 TDI GRX. My driving style is very tame and I’m always trying to get the most out of a full tank. To further improve the Patrol’s fuel consumption I had a performance chip fitted, and the catalytic converter removed. My thinking was...

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GELANDEWAGEN G-PROFESSIONAL vs LAND CRUISER 79 SC

Mercedes Benz Australia recently announced the release of a 2017 Merc G-PRO, a single-cab Gelandewagen built for hardcore off-road use. The G-PRO boasts some pretty impressive specifications, along with a number of accessories that are to be fitted as standard...

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AT CHASER – ADVENTURE TRAILERS

NAME: AT CHASER WHO MAKES IT: Adventure Trailers. One of the few overland fitment companies in north America – based in Prescott Arizona. ACCOLADES: The AT Chaser was awarded the Best of Breed (2008) by the folks at Overland Journal. STANDARD FEATURES: The AT Chaser...

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ROOFTOP TENT versus GROUND TENT

  Written and compiled by 4WD Truckin'   QUESTION: I know it’s not the most technical question, but I’m hoping you can help. I’ve recently fallen for the off-road / 4×4 way of life, and this has brought me to the question of which tent I should buy. Should I go for a...

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DO YOU REALLY NEED A SNORKEL?

QUESTION I’m considering a snorkel for my 4x4. As far as I can tell, it appears to be a relatively affordable modification when compared to other off-road accessories. However, I’m not completely sold on the benefits, especially when so many people are unsure about...

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WHICH BATTERY IS BEST FOR A DUAL SYSTEM?

QUESTION: I enjoyed your column last month on dual-battery systems. I was particularly interested in your statement that a high-cycle battery might be a better option than a deep-cycle. This goes against all of the advice I’ve heard so far, which is why I’m keen to...

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LEDs VERSUS FLUORESCENT CAMPING LIGHT

Written and compiled by National Luna. Modern society is obsessed with technology. So much so, that we often get caught up in “progress” and mistakenly assume that the old tech is inferior to the new. LED lighting is a great example: it’s bright, efficient and lasts...

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BIGGER TIRES vs SMALLER TIRES (pros and cons)

  Written and compiled by Grant Spolander   The phrase, “bigger is better” is often used to debate the fitment of oversized tires, but what in this argument is function, or fashion? In the case of the latter, it’s inevitable that car enthusiasts will express a certain...

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