Ball hitch for RTF trailer

My truck is a little on the short/small side when compared to my Jeep. The truck is on 33s and the Jeep is on 35s. There’s two more inches of lift on the Jeep than the truck. When I tow the RTF trailer with my truck the trailer has a mean rake to it. It’s like six inches lower in the front.

So, I got creative:

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The adaptor pins on to the trailer like the swivel hitch it came with. The ball hitch is bolted to the tubing so my welds aren’t tested. The two nut/bolt combos are welded over a hole in the tubing and so can be tightened to prevent more play in the system. The spot welds around the nuts were rushed and look terrible. I’m out of practice and used the smaller 110v welder. It was raining. The dog ate my welding gloves. I’ll think of more excuses later.

When I use the hitch below, the trailer is just about level behind my truck. And it’s not too tall to hit the tailgate if I lower it.

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I’d like to add a box to the trailer but there’s no easy place to put one.

 

Rubicon Ronin

 


ENF finishes work on closed ‘meadow’ routes. ALL are now OPEN for use!

Way back in 2011, 42 OHV routes within the Eldorado National Forest were closed because someone filed a lawsuit claiming they were damaging near by meadows.

A few years later, 18 of those routes were reopened after it was determined that they NEVER were damaging near by meadows. Yes, it took years.

The Deer Valley Trail, although cleared of damaging near by meadows, took longer to reopen due to endangered species concerns.

Well, the ENF has finally finished repairs to all of the routes in questions and all of the once closed routes have now been reopened. Of course, most of those are approaching their seasonal closures so check for the status before you head out.

Here is a link to the Forest Service news release:

https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/eldorado/news-events/?cid=FSEPRD601691

What I would ask all of you to learn from this is you need to need to develop a very close relationship with your local FS representatives.

What should have happen in this case was local OHV clubs keeping an eye on these trails to do maintenance in certain places to prevent damage to near by meadows. Now it’s hard for the basic Jeeper to know when that type of damage is being done but a few of these trails were obvious issues.

The Richardson Lake Trail was one case. For a few years I had notices a section that literally went through a meadow and it was looking bad. I had a plan in the back of my head to move small boulders to eliminate the mud by harden the crossing, but I never acted on it. My bad, the route was closed for years.

With a close relationship with your local FS rep, maybe there could be an immediate field trip to each meadow to evaluate, in a very public way, the condition of each trail and to develop a plan to repair each trail rather than close it.

The anti-OHV people will do anything to close our trails, we need to do everything to keep them open.

 

Rubicon Ronin

 


ENF prescribed burns coming

The Eldorado National Forest has released plans for their fall prescribed burning projects.

Although there’s nothing close to the Rubicon, there are fires along the route to the Rubicon.

The link to the Forest Service’s page on the projects is below. The easiest way to figure out where things are happening is to click on the map and zoom in.

 

https://www.fs.usda.gov/detailfull/eldorado/home/?cid=fseprd560831&width=full


Tire chain deal!

For those of you who also own a 2wd vehicle along with you 4wd rig, or for those looking to play in the snow with your trail rig, have I got a deal for you.

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I just picked up a pair of tire chains for my daily driver, yes, it’s 4wd, but just in case. The beauty of this pair of chains is that they will also fit the tires on the project Jeep, which oddly enough is 2wd right now. A story for another time. The truck has 265/75R18 and the project jeep is 33×10.5R15. One set fits both sizes.

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The guys name is Dave and lives near the south east corner of McCarran in Reno. He owns a Jeep (stock) but he’s in to old Harleys. Retired big rig driver who drove Donner Pass most of his career. Cool dude. He has an ad on Craigslist:

https://reno.craigslist.org/pts/d/truck-semi-or-4×4-chains/6724364811.html

He finds big rig chains on the highway (free material) and resizes them to what you need. Since he doesn’t really have material costs, he only charges for his time. He claims it doesn’t take any more time to build chains for a set of 35″ tires than it does for 31″ tires, so the cost is the same. About $60.

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He leaves the cam tighteners in place and for me included a homemade tool to work them. You can see from the pictures the cross links are not worn but there is surface rust. I guess if you wanted to you could clean them up and paint them.

I bet if you wanted a custom set with double the number of cross links and wider to drape down the sidewalls, he could build them.

Anyway, I just thought someone out there might need a deal on chains. I think CA law states you need to carry chains during conditions that might require chains. It doesn’t say they have to fit. But why not be prepared with a set that will fit your oversized tires?

Be safe and don’t be ‘that’ guy.

 

Rubicon Ronin

 

 

 

 

 

 


More on prescribed burns…

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This is a photo looking northwest from Meeks Bay. The Smoke is coming from the west end of Sugar Pine State Park. I didn’t stop to take the more dramatic picture as I was travelling south on 89.

Here is the email I received because I subscribe to the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit’s prescribed burn email notifications…

 

PRESS RELEASE

Tahoe Fire and Fuels Team

October 17, 2018 For Immediate Release

Prescribed fire operations today on Tahoe’s West and South Shores

Contact: U.S. Forest Service, Lisa Herron (530) 543-2815

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Weather and conditions permitting, California State Parks and the U.S. Forest Service may conduct prescribed fire operations in Sugar Pine Point State Park on the West Shore and near Twin Peaks on the South Shore beginning today, October 17, 2018. Smoke will likely be present. A map with project locations and details is available for viewing at http://www.tahoefft.org. To receive prescribed fire notifications, send an email to pa_ltbmu@fs.fed.us.

Prescribed fire operations are conducted whenever conditions allow to reduce excess vegetation that can feed unwanted wildfires. Planned fires now reduce the threat of unplanned fires later, which helps provide increased community protection. Fire is a natural process in the Sierra Nevada and helps keep our forests healthy by minimizing the spread of insects and disease, recycling nutrients back into the soil and promoting improved habitat for diverse vegetation and wildlife.

Fall and winter bring cooler temperatures and precipitation, which are ideal for conducting prescribed fire operations. Each operation follows a specialized burn plan, which considers temperature, humidity, wind, moisture of the vegetation, and conditions for the dispersal of smoke. This information is used to decide when and where to burn.

Smoke from prescribed fire operations is normal and may continue for several days after an ignition depending on the project size and environmental conditions. Prescribed fire smoke is generally less intense and of much shorter duration than smoke produced by unwanted wildland fires.

Agencies coordinate closely with local county and state air pollution control districts and monitor weather conditions carefully prior to prescribed fire ignitions. They wait for favorable conditions that will carry smoke up and disperse it away from smoke sensitive areas. Crews also conduct test burns before igniting a larger area, to verify how effectively materials are consumed and how smoke will travel.

Before prescribed fire operations are conducted, agencies post road signs around areas affected by prescribed fire, send email notifications and update the local fire information line maintained by the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit at 530-543-2816. The Tahoe Fire and Fuels Team gives as much advance notice as possible before burning, but some operations may be conducted on short notice due to the small window of opportunity for conducting these operations