This is probably the first year in a long time I’ve felt so rushed by the Christmas season I’ve been unable to catch a breath. Between work and house projects, I’ve had no time at all to catch up on personal items like some videos to share here, nor any chance to install those new shocks Smokey needs. The shooting range is calling my name, too, but there’s definitely no time for that before Christmas arrives.

So angry!

Cowl Ding

Broken StrapUpon my return to work from lunch today, the wind ripped my door out of my hand. And, wouldn’t you know it, the nylon strap designed to catch the door snapped by the strain.

As a result, Smokey now wears the infamous JK cowl ding — and I’m wearing a pretty severe scowl!

The good news: My new shocks arrived today. The bad news: I’m ill and can’t do anything about it.

Stay tuned.

A more quiet ride, on the way!

The annoying tailgate rattle I’ve been unable to remedy, it turns out, is a bad shock bushing. (I’d asked my mechanic to take a look while Smokey was in this week for an engine misfire.)

I’ve known my shocks weren’t long for this world for a while, but I’d hoped to nurse them until I lift the Jeep next year.

In light of this new realization, I’ve chosen to go ahead and replace the tired factory shocks with a set of Bilstein 5100s that should work at Smokey’s current 1.5 inches of lift as well as at the three inches I have planned. Stay tuned.

Recently, I’ve been exhibiting a very rough idle indicative of a misfire. So, Smokey has spent the last couple of days at our mechanic’s shop being checked out. The good news is, the problem was simple — just a need for new spark plugs — and not a realization of my worst internet-research-fueled fears. While it was a minor annoyance to realize the problem was one I could’ve easily solved myself, our mechanic is a fellow Jeeper and a great guy, so I’m happy to support his business!