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Old 02-13-2012, 02:00 PM   #4276
MeterPig
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You left out the entire quote...I put "as one person said"...so it wasn't my quote. Either way, the fact that you can drive it up a dry road..is fantastic. Most people, even me with AWD, wouldn't voluntarily cruise up a road with a monster crack. Good on you.

I hope you find the same results on something slippery-I.E. a turd.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusgatos View Post
Really? Am not saying that AWD (or even better, real 4WD with a low-range transfercase) wouldn't be a whole lot better off-road, but I have been pretty fucking impressed with my little 2WD safari. Have been mobbing the living shit out of it for the last few months all over norcal, and hasn't let me down yet. Was thinking really hard about selling and buying an AWD to build instead, but am leaning towards just installing a selectable locker now. Still on the fence, but for what it's worth, have got a lot of experience building/driving all different kinds of off-road vehicle and these little 2WD vans really aren't that bad.



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Old 02-13-2012, 02:04 PM   #4277
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http://www.frontiersman.com/opinions...871e3ce6c.html

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Wow. What a cool friend. He was actually going to give me a car! So after work I ran over, walked around back and there it was - a white minivan. Specifically, a Chevrolet Astro. Hey, we were in dire straits and there was no way I was going to look a gift-horse in the mouth. At that point, I didn't care what it was, I was happy to have it.
We cleaned it inside and out and she fired right up. It had 240K miles on it and so I was amazed at how great it ran. Didn't burn oil, didn't leak anything and had plenty of power. But I still planned on using it just long enough for us to replace it. Our friend was adamant he didn't want it back and wasn't concerned about the money, so I thought I'd pass it along to somebody else needing wheels once I had purchased an SUV.
But then something started to change. I started to like that ugly thing. Time went by and we kept it. I resisted it at first, but I'll be darned if that AWD van wasn't the most amazing rig I'd ever had in the snow. It went everywhere. It never broke. I started to justify liking it because Astros sit on a truck chassis and handle more like a truck than a mini-van. So, hey, it was really a truck and not a mini-van, right? Yeah my friends didn't buy that either.
We ended up keeping it until last summer when we came across another soul who had lived in Alaska for two years and had never been able to save up enough money to get a car. By now we had three cars, it was summer and most of the kids were in Washington so we wouldn't need a big family rig for a few more months. So for just a little bit of money to cover some of the expenses we had put into it (snow tires, etc.) we passed it along. Much to my surprise (and my wife's), I was sad to see it pull out of our driveway and head down the road.
So, I'd owned a mini-van. Well, the kids would be returning from Washington in about a month and we'd have to have something to carry them all around in again. Seven days later I found a great deal on a GMC Safari AWD (GMC version of an Astro). It's still in the driveway and I don't plan on ever selling it.
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:40 PM   #4278
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeterPig View Post
You left out the entire quote...I put "as one person said"...so it wasn't my quote..
I didn't miss that part, was just addressing the point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MeterPig View Post
I hope you find the same results on something slippery-I.E. a turd.
Like this?



Or this?



Have driven a lot of stuff like that first pic, and I know it doesn't look very impressive, but that's a super-duper-sketchy slippery sidehill in that second pic. And those are just whatever crappy tires came with the van. Has done pretty well in the snow too. Think it mostly comes down to the extra weight over the rear axle, so it seems to do a little better than say, a similarly-equipped 2WD truck might.
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Old 02-13-2012, 08:53 PM   #4279
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Dude! glad you love your van!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusgatos View Post
I didn't miss that part, was just addressing the point.


Like this?



Or this?



Have driven a lot of stuff like that first pic, and I know it doesn't look very impressive, but that's a super-duper-sketchy slippery sidehill in that second pic. And those are just whatever crappy tires came with the van. Has done pretty well in the snow too. Think it mostly comes down to the extra weight over the rear axle, so it seems to do a little better than say, a similarly-equipped 2WD truck might.
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Old 02-14-2012, 12:43 AM   #4280
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeterPig View Post
Dude! glad you love your van!
Sorry, wasn't trying to make this too much about my van. Was just relating my experiences with one of these vans, having recently acquired one (have never owned any type of van before). Being being much more familiar with real off-road vehicles, have just been pleasantly surprised. That's all. The lack of a real frame, and the questionable strength of all the suspension/steering components would be points to address if you really wanted to mob one of these, but hey, they're pretty van-tastic.
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Old 02-14-2012, 05:16 AM   #4281
trailer Rails
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jesusgatos View Post
Sorry, wasn't trying to make this too much about my van. Was just relating my experiences with one of these vans, having recently acquired one (have never owned any type of van before). Being being much more familiar with real off-road vehicles, have just been pleasantly surprised. That's all. The lack of a real frame, and the questionable strength of all the suspension/steering components would be points to address if you really wanted to mob one of these, but hey, they're pretty van-tastic.
I don't see any need for all/4 wheel drive if all you do is drive on the road. All it does is make the drive train more complicated and add several hundred pounds to the vehicle. It also adds to the price. Where I live we get plenty of snow and ice. I run 4 good snow tires and I can go anywhere I want. All 4wd does is allow you get moving faster when conditions are crappy and then hit other objects harder when you cant stop or turn. All vehicles have 4 wheel brakes and 2 wheel steering.

Now for offroad driving, I can see the need for 4wd. But as you have proven in the above pictures, it is not really necessary either.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:43 AM   #4282
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My 2wd with good tires got stuck in the snow 2 weeks ago.
I wasn't off road.. just a ski resort parking lot (and in the traffic lane).

When we get epic snow in Colorado.. 4wd is definitely an asset. Do you know how many people it takes to push a 3 ton vehicle? (4 cars worth)

We use our van for winter sports (snowboarding, snowshoeing, hiking) and I will be seriously considering trading it in on 4wd when the 4wd Sprinters finally make it to the US even with the added expense, complexity and fuel costs.

When I'm 25 miles up a mountain road and 4wd saves me from having to walk out.. it'll be priceless.
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Old 02-14-2012, 06:55 AM   #4283
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geek View Post
My 2wd with good tires got stuck in the snow 2 weeks ago.
I wasn't off road.. just a ski resort parking lot (and in the traffic lane).

When we get epic snow in Colorado.. 4wd is definitely an asset. Do you know how many people it takes to push a 3 ton vehicle? (4 cars worth)

We use our van for winter sports (snowboarding, snowshoeing, hiking) and I will be seriously considering trading it in on 4wd when the 4wd Sprinters finally make it to the US even with the added expense, complexity and fuel costs.

When I'm 25 miles up a mountain road and 4wd saves me from having to walk out.. it'll be priceless.
They make a locker for that truck?

M
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Old 02-14-2012, 07:10 AM   #4284
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Let's soundproof this thing!



Well, maybe not soundPROOF, but at least a little less loud.



Do this to your doors, and they actually sound like a Mercedes when you slam the door.

Next up, is the roof, which is actually a Giant Tin Tympani Drum.
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Old 02-14-2012, 07:10 AM   #4285
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:51 AM   #4286
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gummee! View Post
They make a locker for that truck?

M
No

The computer does detect wheel spin and pulse the brake on the spinning wheel.. but it wasn't enough the other day.
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:53 AM   #4287
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Originally Posted by mark883 View Post
Let's soundproof this thing!


[/IMG]
Do this to your doors, and they actually sound like a Mercedes when you slam the door.

Next up, is the roof, which is actually a Giant Tin Tympani Drum.
Nice!

Do a triple layer on your rear wheel wells
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:54 AM   #4288
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geek View Post
No

The computer does detect wheel spin and pulse the brake on the spinning wheel.. but it wasn't enough the other day.


time for a 9"swap
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:13 AM   #4289
Ruffus
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time for a 9"swap
For something that big, I'd prefer a Dana 60.
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:23 AM   #4290
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I used to be a Mobile DJ and for all the gigs I did at ski resorts that would have been awesome!!!!
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