Chinaman’s Gulch

LXBRADY

Hard Core 4+
Joined
Oct 16, 2008
Messages
2,582
Location
Highlands Ranch
Ahh yes this trail did not disappoint! 4 went in 4 came out, I don’t have any pictures, I know lame.

This is my summary, the others can comment as well.

Daniel, if you had arrived, midway through the trail I bet you would have filed a law suit against the trail on grounds that the growing difficulty of the trail was not clarified or expressed.

Scott Yoder has new appreciation for my 6 year old BFG KO2’s that he has been scoffing at for 6 years.

Still one of my favorites....now let’s see those pictures!
 

JadeRunner

Rising Sun Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2005
Messages
1,762
Location
Lakewood, CO
I can post pics and a report later. Too busy at work now
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now.
 

Inukshuk

Rising Sun Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2005
Messages
5,663
Location
Denver, CO
Daniel, if you had arrived, midway through the trail I bet you would have filed a law suit against the trail on grounds that the growing difficulty of the trail was not clarified or expressed.
:clap: :clap: :clap: ha ha Glad to hear! I was so very tempted and instead had a productive day in town!
 

Danger Noodle

Locked
Joined
Oct 5, 2020
Messages
277
Location
Divide, Colorado
Ha! This was a fun trip. Sadly, I didn't fully make it back to the house without problems. Massive thanks to @Dirt Claude for helping me out a ton! I'll update once I know more of what went wrong.
 

Telly

Rising Sun Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2008
Messages
697
Location
Monument
I've run that trail several times about 8-10 years ago with my old 97 FZJ80 with 35's and lockers. The trail has definitely changed some based on the pictures! It's one of my favorite trails in Colorado but looks to be a bit more than my current rig could handle without dragging a$$ over a bunch of obstacles. Thanks for posting up pictures!
 

JadeRunner

Rising Sun Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2005
Messages
1,762
Location
Lakewood, CO
Had a great day on the trail. There was a group of 10 built Jeeps out of head of us. I was bumming out that I called for a 10am start. I usually start at 930am here. Which would have put out ahead of them. There were just 4 of us. Brady, EJ, Brad and myself. Everyone was built and were good drivers. So no trail issues. After following 13 jeeps for a while. We were backed up at the optional obstacle in the gulch. The jeeps were still getting the last of their group thru. Fortunately, they kept the main road open and let us by. So then we easily were able stay ahead of them.

The first mile or so of the trail was certainly a lot more difficult. But didn't give us any problems. With it being dry I found I could stick my lines just fine. I just had to tap on the front locker at a few key moment to crawl up things. Up the middle right of whale rock, sideways up the double slab and take the S turn thru sheps revenge. Honestly those obstacles seemed about the same. I have taken those same lines so many times so it seemed pretty easy. Having new tires helped also. Brady's new gen BFG AT's seemed to hook up well also.;)

Coming down EJ's 40 blew a radiator hose and hot water over his feet. We was able to fix the hose quickly and we all chipped in with water. He water wasn't topped off and need to stop often. So I went down to get a 5 gal jug of water for him. Couldn't find water around the gunsmoke. So I went to Doug's shop and he he promptly filled up our jug. We passed Brad at speed going back in but didn't see EJ. So we drove all the way back up the trail to the S turn looking for him. Turned around and saw him leaving the Gunsmoke. Not sure how we missed him. Glad he make it back ok with Brad's help.
 

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Danger Noodle

Locked
Joined
Oct 5, 2020
Messages
277
Location
Divide, Colorado
Had a great day on the trail. There was a group of 10 built Jeeps out of head of us. I was bumming out that I called for a 10am start. I usually start at 930am here. Which would have put out ahead of them. There were just 4 of us. Brady, EJ, Brad and myself. Everyone was built and were good drivers. So no trail issues. After following 13 jeeps for a while. We were backed up at the optional obstacle in the gulch. The jeeps were still getting the last of their group thru. Fortunately, they kept the main road open and let us by. So then we easily were able stay ahead of them.

The first mile or so of the trail was certainly a lot more difficult. But didn't give us any problems. With it being dry I found I could stick my lines just fine. I just had to tap on the front locker at a few key moment to crawl up things. Up the middle right of whale rock, sideways up the double slab and take the S turn thru sheps revenge. Honestly those obstacles seemed about the same. I have taken those same lines so many times so it seemed pretty easy. Having new tires helped also. Brady's new gen BFG AT's seemed to hook up well also.;)

Coming down EJ's 40 blew a radiator hose and hot water over his feet. We was able to fix the hose quickly and we all chipped in with water. He water wasn't topped off and need to stop often. So I went down to get a 5 gal jug of water for him. Couldn't find water around the gunsmoke. So I went to Doug's shop and he he promptly filled up our jug. We passed Brad at speed going back in but didn't see EJ. So we drove all the way back up the trail to the S turn looking for him. Turned around and saw him leaving the Gunsmoke. Not sure how we missed him. Glad he make it back ok with Brad's help.

I wish my lower hose was the only problem that day. Thanks for trying to get water back, and everyone chipping in. I'm guessing we easily added 3+ gallons of water to the rad and block, and I still had to add almost another 2 when we got back to the Gunsmoke. I knew that hose was eventually going to bite me in the ass, and it did. I have plans on trying to keep a bit cooler on the trail, but that will be happening once this is driving again.

Driving home went great until it didn't.

Due to my foot, my mom offered to drive, and I begrudgingly accepted. Brad was kind and offered to follow us back to make sure nothing else happened, and I'm really glad he did. About 2/3 of the way home, right before Wilkerson Pass, we started smelling something burning occasionally. It kind of smelled like coolant, so I thought that there must have been some dripping of the block onto the exhaust and the wind has shifted, causing us to smell it. Pretty suddenly, Brad sped up and motioned for us to pull over, as we were really burning something. I hopped out, and all that I saw was a stream of oil pouring out of my exhaust flange. I thought for sure we had toasted the motor. It was really strange, as oil pressure was great as we pulled off, and there were no other signs of something failing majorly. I start looking around, and everything is covered in oil. It soaked my cab under the mats and everything from the bell housing down on the left side was covered. I start feeling all of my cases, and they all feel exceptionally warm. I pull the fill plugs to see if there is any oil left that I could reach. Nope. Somehow, my Trans/Toybox AND transfer case all managed to lose oil. I'm really glad Brad was behind us, as my mom would probably have not felt/heard the change in the cases as she was driving, and they probably would have gotten to the point of grenading.

20210504_165500.jpg


I'm completely hypothesizing here, as I have not had time to start the autopsy. Finals week and preparing to move is killing me. Now, the Trans/ Toybox is expected. They partially share Oil. The NV4500 should still have some oil left when I drain it. I have no idea what to expect from the Toybox. The Split case is very unexpected. Here is my theory. I've had very small amounts of oil slowly go missing from my split case. I had no idea where it was going, and assumed that there was a small amount going out of the flanges when they started spinning, as there was a small oil ring above the rear flange. I'm now betting that the seal between the Toybox / Split case failed at highway speed and that it was probably slowly leaking, causing me to lose the oil in there. I have no idea why that seal may have gone bad, as they should have been rebuilt by a VERY reputable builder (Valley Hybrids). I've heard that the toyboxes absolutely hate being overfilled with oil. When they get overfilled, they puke oil out of the shifter. So, I'm assuming that the toybox got overfilled, got angry, and puked oil everywhere. What that doesn't explain is why so much oil came out. I easily watched half a quart flow off the exhaust, I probably have another 1/2 quart in the cab, and I have no idea how much I lost on the road / everywhere else on the car. I wouldn't expect that an overly fully toybox could purge that much oil that quickly out of a shifter hole. Even if the boot came off, I'm not sure how easily that much oil could get out of a quarter-sized hole. Who knows how much came out, my panicked state of mind was probably not thinking that clearly. I'll have to measure when I drain everything. I'm sure that it is either the Toybox or NV that had a majority of the problem, as it was all the super expensive synthetic gear oil that the NV requires that was draining everywhere and was coating the cab.

The really strange thing is that there were no symptoms at all leading up to the failure. There were no strange noises, whining, clunks, vibrations. Nothing. I could see that much oil coming out if cases started to separate, but I would assume that there would be several holes in whatever case started to separate. All the cases were torqued and loctited as well, so I'm pretty sure they aren't coming apart. All the drain/fill plugs were tight and accounted for, so I'm doubting one fell out and replaced itself. Even if a gasket fell out, which is pretty much impossible, I doubt that that much oil would come out that quickly. Anyways, I'm not 100% sure what fully happened, especially since there were no symptoms before the problem. I'd love some other theories or ideas to what failed if you have them.

20210504_165516.jpg


Anyways, Brad, being the great guy that he is, helped me limp to a turnoff, and then drove us home to grab the truck and trailer, and was even kind enough to go back and help me load. 11/10 I would break down with Brad again. Also, major thanks to everyone that donated water and everything else to help get me off the trail.

So, the cruiser drives, and it drove on and off the trailer and through several gears getting off the highway just fine, so I don't think that there is any major damage in any of the cases. Once I get up to Proffitts, I'll probably drop everything and inspect just to be safe, which I'm REALLY not looking forward to, but at a minimum, there is probably going to be a new seal going into the Split Case, and I'm probably going to be isolating the Toybox from the NV, as it really doesn't need to share the oil. It's a 1:1 straight through to the Transfer, and only really builds heat in Low, which is really only used for short periods on obstacles.

Anyways, it was a mostly fun day with some disappointment mixed in, but it could have gone a lot worse.

-DJ
 

JadeRunner

Rising Sun Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2005
Messages
1,762
Location
Lakewood, CO
Wow DJ sorry to hear you had those issues on the way home. Brad is quite the stand up guy on the trail and for helping you all that way. You are very mechanically inclined for someone your age. Building that rig yourself. Then taking it to CM a few weeks ago with no issues. Soon to be a Proffitt apprentice. That's pretty damn cool.

Sounds like your on the right track with this. Way beyond my skill set. I know when I did my first fluid changes in all my cases after my taco box install. I topped everything to the fill hole. Then indeed fluid spewed out the shifter and breathers for quite a while until I figured out you just can't top them off like that. No damage though.

I do have video of you (and Brad) trying to climb the left side of whale rock. Need to figure out how to post them here. Perhaps it may give some insight. But, like you say everything sounded fine. Your front air locker wasn't engaging though.
 

Danger Noodle

Locked
Joined
Oct 5, 2020
Messages
277
Location
Divide, Colorado
Wow DJ sorry to hear you had those issues on the way home. Brad is quite the stand up guy on the trail and for helping you all that way. You are very mechanically inclined for someone your age. Building that rig yourself. Then taking it to CM a few weeks ago with no issues. Soon to be a Proffitt apprentice. That's pretty damn cool.

Sounds like your on the right track with this. Way beyond my skill set. I know when I did my first fluid changes in all my cases after my taco box install. I topped everything to the fill hole. Then indeed fluid spewed out the shifter and breathers for quite a while until I figured out you just can't top them off like that. No damage though.

I do have video of you (and Brad) trying to climb the left side of whale rock. Need to figure out how to post them here. Perhaps it may give some insight. But, like you say everything sounded fine. Your front air locker wasn't engaging though.

Good to know about the front locker. I'll have to pull apart that solenoid and see why it isn't engaging sometimes. It's an oh well about the cases. I'm sure I could probably just fill them up again and it would run fine, but would probably end up doing the same thing again, so I probably need to go change seals in the cases. Just a PITA as they were all supposed to be rebuilt.

It was a fun run, thanks for putting it together!
 

Dirt Claude

Lifted
Joined
Mar 21, 2012
Messages
170
Location
Castle Rock
We've got a lot of stand up folks in this club and I'm sure any would have done the same if they were in that position. I'm glad we were able to catch it before it turned catastrophic. When my windshield started to get covered in a film of oil, I knew it was time to chase you down.

Oh...if you're ever invited to dinner by Sue, DJ's mom, you don't want to miss it. Sue makes a mean dish!
 
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