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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
…to drive a 97 TJ to Cabo and back?

As I posted elsewhere, I’m thinking about entering the Baja XL in the non-competitive “adventure” category. It’s all on public roads, but from the videos I’ve seen that doesn’t mean much…. anything from paved to desert track to mud.

Its about 3000 miles, in 10 days with “minimal support”…. Meaning unless you’re seriously injured or ill and have to be evacuated, you’re on your own or on the charity and goodwill of others.

The TJ is already lifted 2” susp + 1” body and on Duratrac 33x12.5x15s, with a Ford 8.8 rear and 4.10 gears.

Automotive parking light Tire Wheel Vehicle Automotive side marker light


I’m already planning a swing out tire carrier, cargo rack and rooftop tent (many of the nightly stops are wilderness far from a hotel). I’m thinking fuel, water, hi-lift jack,…. Winch?

If this works out it may be the first step into other rallies and off road events.

What do you think? What would you add?
 

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I would say a couple things I would definitely add would be a winch, an air source (onboard or portable compressor) to air down and up as needed and some tire plugs in case you already used your spare and get a puncture. I would also make sure your cooling system is performing at top level.
 

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more than one spare. shove. axles, u joints. serpentine belt, duct tape, rope, sand ladders/sand anchor/rolls of carpet (the VW racers use them to get unstuck). sat phone, gun (but it illegal) MRE,s. water and water purifying stuff. toilet paper, cash, i don't know how it will be on your trip, but the mexicans think its entertaining to dig hole in the road at the baja race.
 

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I'd mini-spool the 8.8 for some extra insurance (but maybe bring some spare shafts too), ZJ or other heavy-duty steering, steering box and radiator skids, maxtraxx, I'd do the aluminum jack with sand skid instead of hi-lift. Definitely 2 spares and fluids, spare radiator hoses. Basically lots of weight haha.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
i don't know how it will be on your trip, but the mexicans think its entertaining to dig hole in the road at the baja race.
Fortunately neither the adventure or race categories are “speed” events. The racers get points for the number of geocaches they find on each leg, the adventures just drive the legs, but neither is timed, so driving fast isn’t really required.
 

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One major item that must be upgraded for anything like that is your tie rod. The factory tie rod is not only skinny it's hollow too. It bends very easily on tougher terrain or with bigger tires. Personally I'd go for the bolt-on Currectlync Heavy Duty Steering kit from Rock Jock formerly known as Currie. Or if that's too much $$$ then you can replace it with the stronger tie rod from a V8 powered Grand Cherokee ZJ which is a bolt-on upgrade. It's larger diameter and is solid.
 

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One major item that must be upgraded for anything like that is your tie rod. The factory tie rod is not only skinny it's hollow too. It bends very easily on tougher terrain or with bigger tires. Personally I'd go for the bolt-on Currectlync Heavy Duty Steering kit from Rock Jock formerly known as Currie. Or if that's too much $$$ then you can replace it with the stronger tie rod from a V8 powered Grand Cherokee ZJ which is a bolt-on upgrade. It's larger diameter and is solid.
I concur. The Currectlync steering linkage was the first mod I did after going to 35s. It's been rock solid.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ok, I’ll do the ZJ tie rod upgrade. I’ll look st skid plates.

I’ve got a compressor, plug kit and pioneer tools already.
 
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