Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Metaphysical mechanic work

Mechanic lessons from a Professional Dreamer

I have been studying Ghalil's Professional dreamer book for the past few weeks. I just realized that the same steps she takes for achieving life's goals are the same I use for mechanic work on my Jeeps.

Step 1. Clear the clutter. You can't work effectively if you have too many distractions.

Step 2. Decide what you are trying to accomplish. Just how do you want the repaired or modified vehicle to perform.

Step 3. Determine what you have to work with. Know what parts you have on hand, what skills you have and what tools you have to accomplish the task.

Step 4. Get a clear picture of how you expect the job to progress. Do the job in your mind and work out the problems before they arise.

Step 5. Start the job. You will never get finished if you never start. Just do it.

Step 6. Just let it happen. Once you start don't worry about the decision to do the job. Just work to get it done. As problems arise, handle them and keep going.

And finally give thanks for another job well done and enjoy your vehicle's new enhanced performance.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Benton Falls Trail

Hiking the Benton Falls Trail

Yesterday JeepGirl and I took our dog Smash for a hike to Benton Falls.

This trail has been closed for a few weeks due to a tragic bear attack. Now the trail is reopened and we used this opportunity to give Smash some leash training and have fun in the water.

The short way up the mountain is the gravel road. Great fun in the Jeep. The Chilhowee campground was the start on one of the stages in the Cherokee Trails rally. Jeep Girl earned her Jeep girls do it in the mud sticker working the finish of this stage in 2003.

For more pictures of the falls and more about the trail see JeepGirl Travels.

Benton falls Trail

Friday, June 23, 2006

How to be an alpha dog

Attraction secrets from the Alpha Dog

I have been doing a lot of work with my dog Smash lately. Some of you may recall that he is a super mechanic helper when I am working on my Jeeps.

I recently bought the book sitstayfetch to help me work with him. One of the bonus books that came with sitstayfetch was a book on how to be an alpha dog.

Now I have been teaching men in my attraction training about being the alpha male and defining authority for a while now. But this little bonus book about being the alpha dog was a real eye opener for me.

I can see applications for this idea in every thing I do. In fact, in my employee management training I am often talking about maintaining authority while making the employees feel empowered. This alpha dog idea is exactly the same concept.

The alpha dog makes the rules and the rest of the pack is eager to follow along because they know he is doing what is best for all of them. He earns and deserve their trust. And it is such subtle actions that make the alpha dog. It has nothing at all to do with exerting physical force or aggression. It has everything to do with attitude and body language.

So if you want some great references on how to establish your desired place in the world and to know why it is important, I now have two to recommend:

First is this superb course by John Alanis about how to define authority.
And second is the bonus book included with sitstayfetch.

Remember both have a money back guarantee if they don't work for you. But I know you will learn something from both of them.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

My Dog Smash: cute puppy pictures

AWW alert! warning cute puppy pictures.

My Dog Smash: cute puppy pictures

Here is a link to some really cute pictures of my dog Smash when he was a puppy.

Non Jeep Adventure

A rescue mission - but where's Mom?

Yesterday I got a call from my mom saying they had car trouble on their way home from Mississippi. They were stalled in sight of the rockets in Huntsville, Al.

I suggested that we could solicit the help from some rocket scientists I know but Dad said he would just wait.

The trailer was already hooked to the Suburban so I was off after gathering up some tools. One thing I did not think to bring was a winch.

Once I found them and managed to find a place to turn around, I pulled the Suburban and trailer in front of them and backed into place on the shoulder. Dad had told me the alternator had failed so I expected a dead battery. I had brought along my tractor battery for this problem.

We hooked up the jumper cables and the starter just clicked. I thought that maybe the dead battery was sapping the voltage so I went to disconnect the dead battery from the circuit. When I did, the battery terminal fell off in my hands. Well with the dead and damaged battery out of the circuit , it should start now. But no go.

So, next I loaded the ramps back on the trailer and backed the Suburban to within reach of the jumper cables. Lucky there was a very wide shoulder here.

Still no go on the jump start. I then realized that these were not my good jumper cables but some my son had bought one day in an emergency. They were stored where I normally keep my good cables so I suspect that my good cables are in his Jeep now.

So the next step was to remove the battery from the Suburban and place it in the Silverado. These are those silly side terminal batteries in case you are wondering why we did not just put in the tractor battery.

Now the pickup started. I had hoped that the alternator was OK but I guess the damaged battery did it in. Dad backed the truck up and started up the trailer ramps only to discover that the truck running boards would not fit between the trailer fenders.

So it was back off the trailer to remove the running boards. My Summit Racing pit mat was great for laying in the red clay while we snatched off the running boards on the side of the interstate.

One more try to load and it fit fine. Got it strapped down, swapped the battery back to the Suburban and we headed home.

Just north of Huntsville, we stopped at a truck stop for fuel and air for the trailer tires. As I was collecting my tire gage, mom asked me if I wanted a drink. The 97 degree day had made me thirsty so I asked her to get me a bottle of water.

Dad and I spent some time checking all the tires and tie downs. As I climbed in the truck I heard dad talking to mom and I carefully pulled the truck and trailer out into the busy highway traffic. As I did, I looked back to get my water bottle, I noticed that mom was missing!

I asked Dad "where's mom?" He said "I was just talking to her." I said "I know, but where is she?" We then realized that she had been left behind.

As I tried to move to the left lane to turn around on this divided four lane road there was a constant stream of traffic as far as I could see behind me. I had to drive very slowly down the right lane for about a mile before I got a break to move left and find a crossover.

By the time we got back to pick up her up, she was very hot from standing out in front of the truck stop thinking we had abandoned her.

From now on, we will take roll call after each stop to make sure no one is left behind. I am sure mom will find this event as funny as the rest of us in a few days. Check for any new "Left Behind" recipes on her blog - meals with a message

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

RallyCross race June 24th - cancelled

RallyCross June 24th cancelled
There will not be a Rallycross June 24th at Dave Brooks farm in Graysville, Tn.

See the Chattanooga SCCA web page for times and directions.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Jeep video clips

Jeep Video clips and in car video

Also posted on Jeep Girl Travels are some short video clips of our trip to Kentucky off road park.

Click here to view the Jeep video clips.

The www.rallyjeep.com site also has some video clips from the Rally Jeep racing on a stage rally.

Jeep pics and off road stories

My Jeep history

Much of my recent Jeep history is located on JeepGirl travels in the Jeeping section.

Here you can find stories and pictures of all the Jeep off road fall crawl trips from 2003 to the latest trip in the spring of 2006. There are tons of pics on these pages including some stored in our webshots folders. There are also links to the Jeep pics from some of the others who went on these Jeep off road trips.

Also on this page you will find links to rally cross racing and some stage rally racing as well. complete coverage of our stage rally racing is on www.rallyjeep.com. Also on that site you will find more our our racing Jeep history.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Jeep Pictures

Pictures of our Jeep Cherokees

Speed Racer XJ
jeep pictures

Jeep Girl's XJ 1999 Cherokee Classic
jeep pictures

Mike Daily driver XJ 1991 Jeep Cherokee Laredo
jeep pictures

Scuffy the Off Road Jeep 1984 Cherokee v6
jeep pictures

Our First Jeep Cherokee
jeep pictures
For more pictures of our Jeeps and others from the XJ list, see the Jeeping section of JeepGirl travels.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Campfire Cooking

Food always tastes better cooked over a campfire.

One of the best things about the trip to Livingston was the campfire cooking. Hanging out by the campfire with the guys form the XJ list is always entertaining, but this time the food was excellent.

Maybe because I was very hungry. Maybe because it was warmer than 20 degrees out. Maybe because there was no sand in the steak. ( I did not experience that one myself, but I have heard the story enough to make me feel like I did.)

For whatever reason, I love campfire food. When camping, I am willing to totally ignore all my healthy choices advice and just enjoy the carcinogen flavored red meat.

I just found a campfire cooking ebook that has tons of great recipes that I am looking forward to trying out on my next camping trip. Here is the link to some more great campfire food.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Survey results so far

I have gotten lots of interesting suggestions from the survey. Keep sending them in.

Click here to take the survey

At this point here is what I am looking at:

Install the D30 with ARB in the front that I already have. Pull the 8.25 with Lock-rite from the daily driver and install in the rear. (3.55 ratio)

Use the seats from Scuffy as the race seats are difficult to get in and out of.

Use the springs and shocks from Scuffy to get about a three inch lift

I think I can fit 32" tires without cutting the fenders with the right bump stops.

The only cost here would be tires.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Rally Jeep future Survey

Click here to take survey

Due to a severe lack of rally racing activity for my dedicated race XJ, I have been tossing around some options for what to do with this great Jeep and its new Titan stroker motor.

Based on the amount of fun I had this weekend off road, I have been thinking of building it for off road. I can still swap back the stock suspension if I want to race it.

I can change springs in just a few hours. But I would have to stay away from permanent changes like long arms and tubbed rear fenders.

I will be limited on tire size if I decide not to cut the fenders. However, changing front fenders can just be part of the change over process. Not sure how to handle the rears just yet.

Click here to give me your ideas

Monday, June 05, 2006

Livingston Jeep trip

This weekend we took Scuffy to Livingston, Ky to meet up with fellow XJ list folks.
livingston jeep pictures
Livingston turned out to be a great place to wheel. The main road through - which is really the only place where vehicles are allowed now - is a great and challenging road.
livingston jeep pictures
There are lots of twisty V notch runs along with some big rocks right in the road.
livingston jeep pictures
We camped in a nice secluded place by the lake where we dined on fine steaks, potato boats and roasted corn. We had Smores for appetizers and apple and cherry turnovers for desert.

The complete story and Jeep pictures are posted here on JeepGirl travels.