Re: Fixing up the car for the desert

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Posted by Cat-Scan on February 08, 2002 at 12:56:14:

In Reply to: Fixing up the car for the desert posted by Lara on February 07, 2002 at 23:27:34:

Wow! You are getting a lot of good advice but I saw some scary stuff also. Regarding the fuel issue, please drop by your grocery store or newstand and pick up an off road magazine (like 4 Wheel Drive and Sport Utility Vehicle) in which there are a ton of advertisers including many that build brackets for externaly mounting gas cans on most vehicles. Don't be shy about contacting them even if they do not advertise brackets for your style vehicle as many enjoy a new challenge of designing and building a first time bracket. Do yourself a favor, get Roger Mitchell's book "Death Valley SUV Trails". He provides an entire page of advice regarding fuel in DV and the safe transportaion of extra fuel. His statement that you probably don't need to carry extra fuel in DV unless you drive a "real gas hog" would not apply in your case as 10 gallons of fuel is limiting even on a high MPG vehicle. Other than that he gives excellent advice and you will also learn about a lot of trails to drive the Tracker on. Oh, and yes, you will read in the book where the NPS/BLM have continued to close off many routes. So go out and enjoy those remaining open trails while there is time. Here is a brief summary of the fuel tips: 1)Do secure the gas containner so that it cannot tip over or bounce around. Utilize an appropriate external mounting bracket. 2) Don't carry any gas can inside the passenger space of a vehicle (including the cargo space of an SUV). Not only is it an extreme fire hazard, but it is sure to leak, creating noxious fumes. 3) Do carry an ABC fire extinguisher of adequate size (and easy access). 4) Don't fill the container while it is attached to the vehicle. Avoid static electricity by setting it on the ground when filling it. 5) Do put the extra fuel inside your vehicle's gas tank as soon as you can. 6) Don't forget to bring a pouring spout, preferably with a screen filter to catch the larger rust particles that might be in the gas can. As a couple of final words, you might check with manufacturers of fuel tanks such as American Designers or MTS who manufacture extra capacity gas tanks. See if anyone now make a larger tank for the Tracker. This is possibly something else that might be advertised in a 4WD magazine as well. Happy trails.

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