New to the four wheel drive trail riding Hobby

Discussion in 'Carolina Trailblazers' started by PWRWGN MAN, Apr 5, 2016.

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  1. PWRWGN MAN

    PWRWGN MAN Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    LKN
    Hi I have a question for the North Carolina Trail Blazers Club I'm interested in joining I'm new to the off-roading Hobby butt everybody I talk to is into the hardcore trail riding and I'm not interested in that I'm just interested in doing trail that a basic stock truck easily handle and either in the area or the surrounding areas have a lot of other various interests because I'm always taking my family alone he wanted to be a family Hobby I have a 2002 Ford Explorer that I use primarily that I don't care what happens to the body basically stock and I also in the process of purchasing a 2016 Ram Power Wagon fully equipped with locking differentials went the whole nine yards but I really don't want to be on Trails where it's going to get turned into swiss cheese with dents I don't mind a few scratches here and there that's just part of going off road but I seem to get a little discouraged by some of the hardcore guys that say I can't use that size truck to go off-roading does anyone have any other different thoughts and advice and comments please refrain from using disrespectful comments or discouraging comments I'm really trying hard to make this a family activity I'm not interested in rock crawling or driving through 5 feet of water stuff like that just to take the family out and have fun with camping and visiting local things while off roading to keep it interesting please help
     
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  2. CasterTroy

    CasterTroy Motarded

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    Wallburg
    Like @Jason W. advised in the general forum, hit up Scott at Uwharrie Off-Road Training Center | North Carolina and look into training courses. It's across the road from Uwharrie and will give you a VERY educated look into off-roading while allowing you to get a feel for what your comfort zone is.

    As far as the trailblazers, anyone is welcome, and everyone is made to feel welcome (at least from what I've seen)

    TONS of knowledge and no judgement. I've never seen a more helpful group of people. If you'd like, there are MANY in the CTB that have open passenger seats, and may offer you a ride-along if you'd like.

    There will be monthly rides with the CTB and a few will be at Uwharrie later this year. I've been with the CTB now since December and hove only missed one ride and I'm having the time of my life!
     
  3. BigClay

    BigClay Knower of useless ZJ things

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Winston-Salem
    John, I was also new to the offroading world back in 2008 or so, and I joined CTB because of my interactions with some of the members on the forum. I was a newbie and had lots of dumb questions, and the CTBers answered all of my questions and also lent helping hands when I needed it. I try to make at least one ride a year (life keeps getting in the way of making more), and it is always nice to see familiar faces and new faces at each ride. I have learned a lot from riding with people and watching, and then listening to the more experienced guys when they give me advice.

    I will also vote for the UORTC, as Scott is a great guy and an even better teacher. It is worth every penny and you may decide that a smaller wheeling vehicle would be for you (I say a small lift on the Explorer with some 33" tires and you will have a blast).
     
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  4. Jason W.

    Jason W. Carolina Trail Blazers

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2009
    Location:
    nebo nc
    These guys are giving you good advice, don't jump in head first, ride with a group, listen, learn and then make a call on what to do.

    And I am just being completely honest here, man to man. You would not be able to do very many , if any trails with the club in a power wagon. It simply will not fit, its Luke trying to float a battle ship down a creek.
    They are extraordinary capable trucks, a dodge Rubicon so to say, but they are huge.

    You are more than welcome to come and rude with us, our annual Fun. Caravan is in september 10th, you can camp from Friday to Sunday. We will have various club activities on Saturday as well as trail riding and a raffle. Bring the whole family!
     
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  5. Chris_Keziah

    Chris_Keziah Joe Dirt @ Rev Limit Fab

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2010
    Location:
    Winston-Salem
    I really wish I had a picture of Morgan's truck. He has a 13 Power Wagon. Wheels the absolute dog shit out of, however it does show on the outside. Literally zero body panels are straight. Wheeling one on the east coast is kinda like flying a 747 in a basement, that's on fire, and also caving in at the same time.

    Uwharrie should be fairly easy in your truck but you NEED rocker protection and it will do everything with the exception of the first ledge of Daniel. Uwharrie is probably the only place around here your body damage risk is low, everything else is going to be a 4pt turn dent fest.

    My best advice is come out to one of the rides and ride along hang out and get a feel for the club. As @CastorTroy said we pretty much always have an open set somewhere. I joined the club a little over 3 years ago now with the guidance of @Jason W. and it has been the best thing I could have ever done for my offroading habits. The club has more experience than any other group I've seen and a wide range of rigs and knowledge. Another thing I as other recommend is the 4wd-101 course, it will be the best investment you will ever do to your rig (I know we probably all sound like salesmen for Scott but seriously his class is awesome). If there's one thing I wish I knew early on in the sport it's that tire size and lift and all the other mod goodness is no where near as important as driver skill/knowledge.

    auploads.tapatalk_cdn.com_20160406_81fa50c2b312c962acb3bdb023892f97.jpg
    auploads.tapatalk_cdn.com_20160406_fa0760fe487b486bc19cd8697176339c.jpg
    Well I did find some of Morgan's truck, little dated but oh well hopefully he we chime in hint hint @87GMCJimmy
     
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  6. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    Did somebody say wheeling a Power Wagon? :D

    John O'Connell- you have made an excellent vehicular choice sir!!! Most offroad prepared stock truck available in the US market! (and a super comfy people hauler!) You will have a lot of fun with it offroad!!!!

    For trails in NC I know your truck will be able to do most of Uwharrie, the only part your truck won't be able to do is:
    Front of Daniel- you won't have the clearance or the maneuverability to do the ledges.
    I'd also stay away from the left side of the top Dickey Bell's main hill climb, it is possibly doable but very tricky/risky. (I ripped the reservoir off one of my rear King shocks on that climb and I am worried your truck would get caught on the rear suspensions control arm mounts at the axle since they are in a similar position to my King's reservoirs)

    You would also have a lot of fun at UORTC's Grand Overland District trail system.

    I 100% recommend UORTC's 4wd 101 class, actually some of the damage to my bed would have been prevented by a particular thing I learned in that class! (I wish I had taken the class before starting to wheel the Wagon!) The 4wd 202 class and the Winch techniques class would also be awesome future additions to your knowledge base!!!

    One BIG item to discuss, I would not leave the Wagon completely stock-
    GET ROCKSLIDERS!!!!!!! I would honestly be hesitant to wheel most anywhere at Uwharrie without rocksliders. I've done it (a LOT) and it's nerve racking constantly worrying about damaging a rocker! With the loooooooong wheelbase the truck drags belly a LOT out at Uwharrie!!!! For light use, the rocker mount sliders I had would be fine, for hard use, I'd make sure they are frame mounted. (my first set was body mounted and ripped holes in the backsides of my rockers at their mounts (with HARD use- still WAY less body damage than if I hadn't had them though, since I was pivoting the truck off the sliders at times, LOL! (I'd wager I wouldn't be able to open my doors if I hadn't had them))) There's really only one company that makes a frame mounted set of sliders for the Power Wagon at the moment (and fortunately they make them well!!!)- White Knuckle Offroad!
    Dodge Power Wagon Rock Sliders

    My current sliders are based off White Knuckle's mounting brackets and I have been very happy with them! (vs the previous body mounted sliders) The White Knuckle sliders are $$$ but pay for themselves in damage they prevent! For what use you have planned though, I think Aluminess rocker mounted (what I used to have) would be fine though. (I used them a LOT harder than advisable for body mounted sliders)
    Dodge Power Wagon Sliders 2010-2014 | Aluminess Products, Inc.

    Shameless sales plug, LOL!- I believe my old Aluminess sliders will fit a 2016 (I don't think the mounting points changed at all), if they will, I'd sell them for like $400. (Original price is $925 with the optional slider step (that they have))
     
  7. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    If you would like, we can meet up sometime and you can ride with me on the trails out at Uwharrie! (that way, you can get a feel for what it's like without putting your Power Wagon at risk) Or, if you'd prefer to drive yours, I can guide you around on some of the trails!
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2016
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  8. CasterTroy

    CasterTroy Motarded

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    Wallburg
    I will second whit knuckle offroad sliders. Mine have taken a pounding and only show paint scuffs
     
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  9. rodney eppes

    rodney eppes Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    Mt.Holly NC 28120
    Hey John. I read through the posting on the forum, last night. Glad your looking for Clubs, & looking at CTB. The Club is off to ride at Adventure off-road Park, Pittsburg Tn, This weekend. I haven't been there, but they may have some trails that you could do. I expect it's too little notice, now. Next month, we go to Corolla, at the Outer Banks; weekend of May 14th. Nothing but Sand there, & plenty of room to play! There are a couple of water holes you should avoid. Maybe you can do the Beach trip? Just let us know.
     
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  10. storeman

    storeman Known by Few

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2007
    Location:
    Whiteville nc
    This is a great bunch of people
    I have not been active in a while
    But the trips I made will forever be
    Great memories of good times

    No one said anything about Harlen
    And that may be to far for u John
    But there are many many miles and miles of roads your power wagon could handle just fine. Most of the hard rocky trails loop off of a main dirt road and come back in nearby
    So you could follow the harder core guys and meet back with them
    Pretty quick. This is a Awsome off-road area. I don't know if you could see it all even in a week .
     
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  11. BigClay

    BigClay Knower of useless ZJ things

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2008
    Location:
    Winston-Salem
    You going to try and make Harlan with CTB this year Randy? I am afraid that will be the only ride I make this year and would love to see you.
     
  12. storeman

    storeman Known by Few

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2007
    Location:
    Whiteville nc
    I doubt I can make that long trip. I hope to do a little camping in Ure
    This year. I will post up when I head that way.

    Sent from my SGP561 using Tapatalk
     
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  13. PWRWGN MAN

    PWRWGN MAN Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    LKN
     
  14. PWRWGN MAN

    PWRWGN MAN Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    LKN
    Picked up my 2016 power wagon on friday, getting it outfitted with the necessary trail gear & equipment, just have to complete the break-in period then off the the trails and wishing to make some new wheelin friends & join a local 4x4 club
     
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  15. WARRIORWELDING

    WARRIORWELDING Owner opperator Of WarriorWelding LLC.

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Location:
    Chillin, Hwy 64 Mocksville NC
    Small derail. I looked at both those sliders. The body mount I fully get and have fabbed some beefy versions of this, yet not to the like of abuse I want them to with stand. I see the others brand is frame mounted. I also know the frame is boxed. Do they use self threading hardware, bore through with inserts on the frame, or drill and bolt through without inserts?
     
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  16. PWRWGN MAN

    PWRWGN MAN Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    LKN
     
  17. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    They use brackets that fit like a clam shell around the frame. You can see how in the pics on their site:
    Dodge Power Wagon Rock Sliders
     
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  18. WARRIORWELDING

    WARRIORWELDING Owner opperator Of WarriorWelding LLC.

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2008
    Location:
    Chillin, Hwy 64 Mocksville NC
    Looked all over sight already. I see flat bar on the ends of some mounting tube. And some text bragging about half inch plates and bolts. By that I assume they drill through the frame bolt all the way through and pray someone doesn't over tighten the bolts pulling the frame in creating a crease in the boxing or working loose over time as the frame pulls in a bit. If they have generous plates for the inner side I will feel better, those are not pictures or described in detail. Thanks
     
  19. PWRWGN MAN

    PWRWGN MAN Member

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    LKN
    Thank you for the good advice I will definitely use it
     
  20. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Mint Hill, NC
    Hey sorry for the delay, I haven't had a chance to get on for a while!

    They do NOT drill through the frame. They have a few pics showing the way they go around the frame. They fit like a tube clamp around the frame. Although I agree it's possible that if someone wickedly overtorqued them they could MAYBE possibly pinch the frame but, with the width of the brackets and the thickness and resistance to deformation of the frame, I really doubt it would/could be an issue. I can take some pics of mine if you'd like so you can get a better idea!
     
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