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Vehicle prep for long trip


August 25, 2004
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City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
99 XLT
Finally I have gotten paper work issues sorted out and next week I will be leaving on a long trip through South America in my explorer..about 10000km round trip over 5-6 weeks.
Venezuela-Brazil-Amazon basin-Bolivia-Atacama Desert Chilli-Bolivia-Peru and back.

1/2 of which will be dirt/mud/rock roads

heres a list of my preperations so far---anything I've missed ? and or any suggestion on spares that may be a good idea over and above the norm..

Anyone know of any issues with high altitudes and engine problems..4000m+

Oil-air & fuel filters- new antifreeze
New front belt
Timming chain sets replaced
New spark plugs and leads
Cleaned Maf etc
New battery

Tranny new oil and filter
Both diffs new oil
Transfer stripped checked and reassembled

Extra leaf added to pack and greased all leafs

New front hubs

New tires next week..

Any input is apreciated as I'm sure I've forgoton something....

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What a trip. You will WANT to bring along SPARE PARTS and FOOD and WATER.
1) tire patch repair kit
2) air pump
3) granola bars or other food that will not spoil
4) your tools, jack, etc...

Brings extra fluids, jack, spare, tools, food, water, if you have any way safe to store it a jerry can.

Reminds me of the trip across the Darien Gap in Panama...there are NO roads connecting North and South America. About 200 miles of jungle and swamp between Panama and Colombia!!! Some guys attempted to do it in Land Rovers a few years ago, but I think they had to turn back.

Don't forget yoor digital camera. We'll expect pics.

posh sounds like the trip my wife wants to plan
things we talked about

maps - gps
water purification
spare parts -
one of each
axle shafts - front (maybe on need one rear if they are both the same
rotor and pads 1 set just in case
1 wheel bearing hub
duct tape
all fluids in metal containers
binding strap - metal and fastners (metal roll with holes and can be cut to length)
jb weld

and that was a start :) also on the list was money for each country and a contact number for the embessy's (as you can tell be planin)

let me know if you need more i am in the service so i can make a packing list for almost anything.

Honestly---unless it is a heavily modified Explorer----I would take a Toyota Landcruiser or a Landrover.

good replies-a few things new and would come in handy-
most of the travel gear - GPS etc I have, Ive plastic containers for fuel and water
as the local buy steel ones disolve.......

Uj's a new one to my list but a good idea..

The main pain on the route is the BR 319 across the amazon basin as its 700km of dirt road with wooden bridges see this site where a group of 8 cars traveled the same route

after just reading it sounds scary especially on my own..

I can bypass it by taking a boat up the river but it sounds like a painfull trip too.

I'll be missing out the drive up the volcano too...I'll just be doing the salt flats

I would think down there you'd want extended diff and transmission breather hoses, if you dont already.

48" Hijack and flat board to support jack in mud ,come-along, mounting points front and rear for recovery staps, fuses, Plenty of flashlight bat. Multi-tool that has knife pliers etc. extra set of wipers, container of some kind of handi wipes and yes don't forger the crap paper, spool of elctrical auto wire with some crimp connectors and crimping tool

A spare battery and/or one of those jumpstarter things is also a good idea.

Every tool you can think of, haha. I know I carry the majority of my tools in a plastic tub in the back of my X daily, along with other key items (Ignition Coils, some spark plug wires, various lengths of various diameter tubing). Basically, everything and anything that I can think of to repair anything I can repair without the help of compressed air.

Ohh, and rule of thumb on water if you didn't already know is 2 Gallons of water per person per day... and if you are out in the middle of nowhere, add about 20% more in case of being stranded. All too many times I've taken excursions with friends out in the dessert and been glad for my buddy with a Military Deuece and a half because he carries a 500 gallon water bladder in a container in the back just in case. Saved our lives more than once. And remember, you can live longer without food than you can water ;) .