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Old 11-03-2009, 07:10 AM   #1
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I hate getting stuck

Ah, Halloween, trick or treat. My daughter had a friend come over and we set up pumpkins and decorations in our driveway. So, between a place for "Ed" (our old truck), my daughter's friend's car, and the festivities, I moved my two-wheel drive Titan around the back.

Halloween was a success, and rather than move everything back, we just went to bed. Ah, but the evil spirits of Halloween decided to drop over an inch of rain overnight. Now... not having had quite enough sugar the night before, my daughter and her pal wanted doughnuts. So, in a semi-stupor I staggered out the Titan failing to notice the saturated ground.

ZZZZZZZZZZ. Under our fairly decent lawn is a layer of clay which takes on the characteristics of axle grease when wet. So, still not thinking clearly I thought I could get a little momentum rolling downhill and then "take an angle" back up to the pavement.

Roll, roll, ZZZZZZZZZZ. The tire treads are packed with oily, sticky, heavy clay. My police officer neighbor comes over and asks if he can help... maybe push. He and I push while my wife puts on a clinic on how NOT to get a truck unstuck, shooting mud about 75' into the other neighbor's yard. Thanks, I tell the guy, barely holding back the river of Navy profanity welling up in my chest. I have another plan.

So, I go to shop and drag out some lumber and my floor jack. Putting the boards under the rear differential isn't bad. Getting the 80 pound floor jack to move on the soft ground requires a fair amount of rolling around in the mud. Finally, I get the jack under the "pumpkin." Pump, pump, pump.... The boards sink into the goo and then eventually snap.

Rassa, frassa, guldruned, piece of.... get more wood. Roll in mud. Pump, pump, pump. Max height, barely get the rear wheels up. Get the snow chains out of the shop. Roll in mud, trying to get them on. Jack slides over... backstroke under the truck again, replace jack, pump, pump, pump.

Chains now weigh about 200 pounds, covered in clay. Finally get them on tires. Peel off jacket and turn inside out to protect truck seat from the mud. By this time, my wife is watching nervously from the kitchen window, having seen an expression on my face normally associated with axe murder or finding out someone has eaten the last piece of pie. I have decided the truck is going to the road. Drop the truck into reverse and finally move... right over my elderly neighbors tomato cages. I use the crunching as an indicator to go forward. The ZZZZZZZZ become a deeper sound as a dig my way towards the asphalt, leaving a pair of truly admirable ruts.

The truck rumbles to a stop on the road, but since I haven't moved the Halloween crap, I have to park in the front yard. Fortunately, though, I didn't get stuck there.

I go into the mud room and made it live up to its name. I then tell my wife, whatever we take with us, whereever we go.... four-wheel drive. While I'm almost positive I said those words in English, my gave me a look as if I had said something in Hindi... something she did not completely understand but was too polite to do anything but smile and nod.

Yes, the kids did get their doughnuts... and I bought seed, straw and topsoil to repair the lawn. Now... any recommendations on where to buy a couple of tomato cages?
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:16 AM   #2
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Now... any recommendations on where to buy a couple of tomato cages?
Maybe Home Depot has some left, since tomatoe plants are a tad out of season.

Andy
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:19 AM   #3
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That, kind sir, is EXACTLY why I'll never buy another two-wheel-drive truck!

Great post!!!! Thanks for sharing this!

Roger
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:37 AM   #4
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been there, did that. 4WD is no guarrantee you won't get stuck but adding in an anti-lock differential is a big plus. having pulled many an "invincible" 4WD out of going nowhere, my advise is to "pull from solid ground". 50' or 100' of winch cable with hooks can help keep your clothes clean. it is muck lighter than chain and stores easily. if i have to lie on the ground i charge a lot extra.

it really doesn't take much assist to drag something that runs under its own power :-)

stock of cages should be pretty good. this was a bad year to plant tomatoes because of the tomato blight. i can always ship you some from miami ;-)

oh, and after you clean up, don't forget to wash the bottom of the truck
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Old 11-03-2009, 09:16 AM   #5
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Getting "stuck" can be a bit humbling. It happens to the best of us.
Ya know you're not doing much if ya never have problems. If a person
aint been stuck in their own back yard...they need a bigger back yard!
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Old 11-03-2009, 09:24 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hampstead38 View Post
Ah, Halloween, trick or treat. My daughter had a friend come over and we set up pumpkins and decorations in our driveway. So, between a place for "Ed" (our old truck), my daughter's friend's car, and the festivities, I moved my two-wheel drive Titan around the back.

[deleted]
Even though I have a 4 wheel drive truck I have a rear end locker installed.
I installed a ARB air locker in the rear end to replace my three times failed limited slip.
ARB 4x4 Accessories
Have not had to use it yet but intend on testing it this weekend. I will be placing weight in the rear before i try this. The bonus is I have an air compressor and 2 gallon tank on board. They run my air bags and I have a place to hook up a regular air line to fill tires if needed.
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Old 11-03-2009, 09:34 AM   #7
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

I love your story. I thought that crap like that only happened to me. I'm sorry for your pain, but you made my morning.

Brian
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:31 AM   #8
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We were at an Escapees Rally in Sedalia, MO this year when it rained every day. Everyone got stuck regardless of what type vehicle they had. Tow truck operators had a field day hauling everyone out. Have tow insurance along with your 4WD.
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:38 AM   #9
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What a great story. The only thing missing are pictures. I can't believe no one took pictures...
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:49 AM   #10
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Great story! We played in the mud in our yard this weekend too.
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Old 11-03-2009, 11:05 AM   #11
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What a great story. The only thing missing are pictures. I can't believe no one took pictures...
I dunno... my first impulse may not to reach for a camera if my subject had "an expression on [his] face normally associated with axe murder or finding out someone has eaten the last piece of pie."

Unless, of course, the photos would come in handy at the upcoming homicide trial.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:17 PM   #12
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2WD is for going into the fray.
4WD for strategic retreats.

When back wheels try to pass front wheels at near zero speed there is a pit-of-the-stomach feeling that once experienced (with hours of invoked shovel work) forever lurks in the subconscious mind, or seat of the driver, which ever is smarter..

Winch & chains & cables & straps & block/tackle rigs to tie 4WD mud guppy to anything or series of things to retrace entry trajectory.

The single best recovery I've seen was my 88-year-old G'Uncle in his $80,000 Lexus snatching his golf cart out of a freshly harvest wheat field's clay upwelling "wet spot"...
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:30 PM   #13
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What a great story. The only thing missing are pictures. I can't believe no one took pictures...
I think I know why there are no pictures. If you are anything like me, any camera pointed in your direction under those circumstances would be later extracted in a hospital emergency room.
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Old 11-03-2009, 01:52 PM   #14
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Great story - I have a locker in rear of my 2X4 GMC Truck - have not gotten stuck (YET).
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