(aka - how I spent my weekend)
||ith increasing frequency I find myself among friends sitting around in my garage, beverage in hand, weeknight...weekend
| (it does not matter), talking about all that is JEEP.
A couple of weeks ago the topic of naming vehicles came up in our conversation. The group that evening included my wife Beth, Todd Nelson and Seth Bothner. Beth wanted to know why we just didn’t come up with some cool names for our Jeeps. Todd explained that we were not ‘able’ to name our Jeeps...they would be GIVEN a name...how, when, and where that would take place we did not know. Suddenly, as if reading each other’s minds, Todd and I both looked at Seth. We wondered how it was that we had both been driving our Jeeps for three years still unnamed and HE...HE had not even personally laid eyes upon his ‘new’ Jeep and it already had a name?
In reality, Seth’s new jeep was pretty easy to name. The darn thing was supposedly pink for Pete’s
A couple of weeks ago Seth emailed me and asked if I’d drive to Louisiana to help him pick up
Pinky. We’d use my trailer and Todd's truck. “You bet...I’m in”was my reply. Later he reminded me that
Pinky is in Slidell Louisiana - Hell...that’s not Louisiana... that’s western Mississippi. So on Saturday morning I’m up at 3 am and calling Seth at 3:30 am to wake him up. By 4 am we are on the road. Five and one half hours later we enter Slidell city limits. I begin to sense some tension and excitement from across the cab of the truck (get your mind out of the gutter) as Seth has never actually seen this jeep he has purchased - only pictures.
I start grinning as I ask...”So really...how pink is this thing?” Seth’s only reply, “it’s REALLY
pink”. Let me tell you, as we turned that last corner toward
Pinky’s former residence, I was not prepared for what I saw next.
OH MY GAWWWWDDDD!!!
That’s not PINK! That’s fuchsia! (It would almost be worth the expense to print just this one page of the newsletter in color so you all could see just exactly what shade of
pink we’re talking about.)
Sitting in the driveway of the fourth house is a 1990 Jeep YJ that has been painted the
pinkest pink on planet earth. WOW! We waste very little time loading
Pinky up (sans motor, transmission, and transfer case) and hit the road. We are not even out of Slidell and people are pointing and laughing at the powder puff
loaded on the trailer. Seth, of course, yells at each one of them “At least it’s a
Jeep" as they drive by. What
can I say...I agree with him.
So after another five and one half hours we roll back into Houston.
Pinky is unloaded, some of the usual folks that hang out in my garage come over for dinner and to gasp as how
pink Pinky really is. The next thing we know, it’s 2:30 Sunday morning - no wonder I’m so tired - I’ve been up almost 24 hours and Seth has called a wrench-a-thon for 10 am (yea...in 7 1/2 hour). The party disperses as we all to go to our respective homes.
The Next Morning
At the EARLY crack of 10 am my door bell rings. It’s the Pagan family and they are ready to wrench! Where is
Pinky’s owner? Surely, he’ll be here soon - yea, right. I’m not sure if we should blame Seth or Todd...regardless,
Pinky’s donor motor, transmission, and transfer case arrive by 12:30. By that time Shawn, Ed (Ciecko) and I have cleaned my garage, built a flagstone deck for my trailer (sort of), and stripped
Pinky of her windshield, hood, fenders, and grill. She is ready for the driveline test-fit.
The moment of truth...will the donor Cherokee motor, transmission, and transfer case fit in Pinky? NO (explicative deleted - after all, this is a family club)!!! It’s all going to fit, just not today. We are going to need to cut off the old motor mount braces and relocate them...unfortunately, the cutting torch is out of gas...(more
So what are we going to do the rest of the afternoon? That’s right...lets strip her down to the chassis. The crew, who now also include Ray and John, get to work. With a little time left during the day we have
Pinky in pieces. The tub is on the trailer backed into one garage, the rolling chassis is in the back of the shop and all miscellaneous parts - in their glowing
pinkness (fenders, dash, gas tank, more wiring that you would expect to find in a space shuttle, roll bar, grill, etc.) are tossed up into the storage loft above the shop floor and the motor/tranny/xcase are rolled into the other corner of the shop.
With a little time left in the day and not completely satisfied with the day’s carnage, we set our eyes upon John Gates’ nearly stock 84 CJ7. Before dark, John has lost his anti-sway bar, lost the extra 2 inches of bolt hanging from the bottom of his U-bolt plates and has found a nice new hand throttle right below the shift knob.
End of the weekend
So what is in store for Pinky in the near future? You'll
have to stay tuned. This last picture was taken Sunday morning before the carnage began. In the photo, left is
Pinky’s big sister, my 84 CJ7, and right is
Pinky’s little sister “Lil
T”, Todd’s 1999 TJ. Did you notice that Todd’s jeep now has a name? By the time you read this she will officially be christened “Lil T” I’m sure that Todd would prefer “Big T” but he’ll have to wait for 1 ton axles for that name. To see why she’s named
“Lil T” go to http://www.srsnyder.wantabe.com/jeep/lilt.