Well it’s officially 2013 and time to ring in the new year with some new content. I have several alteration projects lined up for our demo vehicle, Dirthog, all of which provide the FJ Cruiser with some very useful upgrades. There are a few newer projects that are still in the ground-work phase while others are near completion or completed. Due to an overly hectic holiday schedule and other time constraints, the written portion of these projects has been somewhat delayed but should be available soon. I don’t want to go into too much detail just yet but I hope you’ll be just as excited as I am to follow along with us once the project details and photos are ready to go. That being said, I opted to do something a little different for this post. Yes, that’s correct. Poetry. In the spirit of the new year, here’s a little poetic prelude to the forthcoming upgrades. Enjoy! Continue Reading →
Although some of you are already aware, I thought I’d share some recent news with the more extended Expeditionr readers out there. In case anyone is confused as to the status of our immediate family here at Expeditionr, there are actually two families to speak of: 1) those of the human variety and 2) those of the mechanical or automotive variety. While we had an addition to the human team just over two years ago, the more recent news involves a new addition joining the automotive side of the house. This newest member, who shall remain nameless for the moment, has been drafted to the automotive team in order to provide two much needed services – towing and hauling. So as fate would have it, even though this recent turn of events was more coincidental than planned, the timing worked out quite well and our new member is settling in quite comfortably so far, quickly building a foundation of loyalty through steady and reliable contribution. Continue Reading →
This is just a quick update for any readers who may have visited recently and found the site in a state of transition. It’s been over a year since the last major overhaul to the Expeditionr web site, and I’ve been wanting to upgrade some of the site options for several months now. In keeping with the seasonal changes, I decided to do some Spring cleaning and spent the last few days updating the site software to incorporate a brand new “green” theme. This update serves to spruce up the site’s outer shell significantly from a visual perspective and provides some brand new features that should make visiting a bit more interactive. Continue Reading →
Unlike my other blogging sites, Expeditionr is the one place that tends to leave technology in the dust. To be more specific, the topics of conversation at Expeditionr tend to focus more on mechanics and mud than on database applications and web design (welcome to my alter ego). But on occasion, despite my efforts to keep these worlds apart, I find the two areas unexpectedly overlapping in a Venn diagram like fashion. The last 10 months or so have been fairly occupying between work and software projects, so I haven’t had a lot of extra time to detail and document here at Expeditionr. Like the content, software updates to the site have also been lacking, potentially exposing the site to exploitation. Luckily, a recent reduction in life’s pace allowed me to return to writing, albeit on a limited basis. The extra time also allowed me to update the site software and various software modules behind the scenes. Now that things are a bit more caught up around here, I’m able to return to my regularly scheduled content updates. Or at least that’s the plan for the moment. Continue Reading →
The Coal Mine Cruiser Classic (CMCC), is an off-roading event for Toyota Land Cruisers held annually at Rausch Creek Off-Road Park (RCORP). Like the FJ Northeasters (FJNE) event, the CMCC attracts a wide variety of folks, both new and old to the off-roading community. The entrance requirements are a bit more stringent than some of the other sponsored events, but it’s still a whole lot of fun and a great way to meet people with a similar interest in this type of activity. It was during the second day of the 2010 CMCC event, when I discovered that heavy rain and Metal Tech tube doors should not be mixed. Having purchased my Metal Tech tube doors only weeks prior to the event, I decided it would be simpler to remove my stock doors, prior to my departure for the event. So with the stock doors tucked away safely in my garage and the weather forecast indicating only a small chance of rain, I drove the two hours northward to RCORP full of enthusiasm and excitement. In hindsight, I should have been a bit more prepared. Continue Reading →
When it comes to off-roading, there are a number of upgrades that can be added to your vehicle to gain additional traction. For those areas where mud and rocks are plentiful, a mud-terrain tire is highly recommended. If the terrain is especially rocky, steep, or otherwise hinderful, a driver also has the option of reducing the air pressure in the vehicle’s tires. This lower pressure allows the tire to deflate and spread in width, increases the rubber footprint and provides greater traction as the increased surface area allows the tire to better conform to the terrain over which it travels. This technique is known as “airing down” in the off-roading community and is a common practice among its members. Continue Reading →
Check out the newest footage added to the Videos section of the site. These latest videos were all shot during the 2011 FJ Northeasters event at Rausch Creek Off-Road Park in Pennsylvania. We spent two fun days running blue trails, many of which were overrun with water flow and mud. But despite the high water, drizzling fog, and lower-than-normal temperatures, it was still a great time with great folks. For anyone else who is interested in attending this event in the future, you can get more details at the FJ Northeasters forums. In my opinion, this is one of the best events to attend, whether you’re new to off-roading or an old-school rock crawler. Thanks again to Tony and Rich for all the video capture and a huge thanks to Pete, Jacques, Brian and all the other organizers who help put this event together every year! I hope to see many of you again soon at future Rausch Creek events!
Stepping outside our comfort zone is something that most people will avoid doing unless absolutely necessary. There are those lucky few who seem to thrive by living life on the edge, but for most of us, there’s something truly unnerving about moving into unexplored territory. I guess I’d place myself somewhere in between. I like to push my limits because I feel it improves me as a person and allows me to grow and learn from the experience. But I’m also cautious when I take these steps and prefer to feel my way around before jumping in head first. This is true for many aspects of my life and off-roading is no exception. Every time I push my limits as a driver or the physical limitations of the FJ, I get nervous, but over the years I have discovered a few tips and tricks that help to reduce the stress. Continue Reading →
As the number of Expeditionr videos increase, we decided it was time to put together a section on the site where visitors could view them. So the brand-new Videos Section was born. The main reason we opted for a dedicated section here on the site was to allow visitors to view all Expeditionr-related content under a single roof, rather than be redirected elsewhere. This also allows us to relocate the content in the future without any interruption to the viewers. That being said, for the moment, almost all of the videos are hosted on YouTube. So if you have already have a YouTube account and wish to subscribe to our video feeds directly through YouTube, you can visit our channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/expeditionr. For the remaining non-YouTube users, or those visitors who prefer to visit us directly, all video content will now be available here at the site by clicking on the Videos link in the top menu. All the videos have been added in reverse chronological order making it super easy to view the latest movies. Be sure to check back often for updated content and don’t forget to leave us a comment or two if you’re feeling spunky!
For those visitors who prefer their content in a downloadable format, Expeditionr has a brand new feature that will make content on-the-go a whole lot easier. Thanks to a recent upgrade, Expeditionr content is now working with Odiogo to provide readers with a brand new text-to-speech option. Thanks to Odiogo’s full-featured podcasting services, every article hosted on Expeditionr will soon have an MP3 streaming option. This is a great feature for the visually impaired visitors or just those folks who prefer listening over reading. Automated audio podcasts have come a long way in the last few years and the end result is actually quite palatable.
For our regular readers, this exciting new feature goes into effect immediately for the latest articles. However older content may take a bit longer to convert, so please be patient with us as we work through the remaining content. If you’re visiting the Expeditionr web site directly and would like to try this feature out, look for the podcast player just below the title of the article you wish to hear. Click the triangular playback button and in just a few seconds the player should begin streaming audio content for that article. It’s just that easy! So now that you’ve heard from us, we’d love to hear back from you. Be sure and stop by soon and check out our brand new podcasting feature and let us know what you think. Continue Reading →