Blue Ridge Overland Gear

When sorting out the 2.5 I transferred some gear from the H3 build including this Blue Ridge Overland Gear. They're a company out of Virginia who make high quality MOLLE, hoop and loop, pouches and accessories for most any storage application in an adventure vehicle. Some of their stock is custom made to upgrade existing gear like fridges and store Goal Zero battery packs, and that's what caught my attention.

I have neither, but I could see how I could adapt their products to my needs and get things where they belong.
Blue Ridge makes an eight-inch headrest panel of loop material on the backside and a smooth, blank panel on the front. It creates a foundation to configure pouches for storage needs of items kept readily at hand.

I added their Goal Zero 10 Battery Charger pouch to hold handheld comms and a 4x8x1 Medium VELCRO front zip pouch to the headrest panel. They both take up most of the loop real estate but provide ample room for smaller adventure necessities.

Craftsmanship is…

Over Drive Switch Swap

One of the perils of not consulting the FSM on any job is taking a risk that might disable a perfectly good working function, like the over drive switch. When I replaced the transfer case shifter my initial thought was that the gear selector knob would have to come off in order to get the rest of the console below it out. That's what I had to do with my Gen III, so my reasoning was the same would apply with the 2.5. It doesn't. I discovered that when I removed the stock over drive switch which had little slack, and when exploring inside the housing for the switch for some kind of release screw, one of the soldered contacts snapped off the switch, disabling the Montero's ability to go into over drive. Damn.

The stock switch is embedded in a plastic housing through which the wires are soldered into a small circuit board. I tried to solder the broken red wire but lacked the finesse and tools for such a tiny connection.

I lived without OD for awhile during the summer, but get…

Roof Rack Hack

The Apex Roof Rack has served our adventures well, stowing cargo and being a platform upon which to mount two ARB awnings.

But the drag knocks a mile-per-gallon off the Monty's mileage. I drive 700 miles a week traversing the great State of Utah for my commute and need every MPG I can get.

And I've always had an issue with how high the rack rides on the stock roof rails (though I should note stability was never an issue) and with how tall the rack itself is. So on my last commute back to the Wasatch I came up with a plan. It's that damn tinker gene.

I started by reducing the height of the Apex Rack, knocking it down by and inch and a quarter.

I cut that much off each vertical upright keeping the necessary mounting dimensions I needs for both ARB awnings. I used a brass pipe cutter that worked as precisely as I needed.

Once cut, I deburred each upright, reassembled them with the stock Apex hardware and installed.

This gave me a platform to work with in mocking up a gutter …

ARB Awning 2000 and Awning Room

Completing the sleeping platform and rear ARB awning is a second ARB awning, this one the 2000 (6ft.) along with ARB's awning room. The room has two large mesh windows with zippered flaps and grommets for poles to provide additional shade while open. The main door is also mesh with a sturdy zippered flap. Inside is an additional door to access the vehicle's passenger door.

This room is 79" x 98" and has ample space for a dining area, a changing room, provides protection from the elements and a spot for our dogs to sleep while we sleep in the truck.

The awning and tent deploy in just a few minutes.

During our first week of ownership we were camping at Valley of the Gods when we were hit by a violent microburst that took out one of the rafters of the 2000 awning. I emailed ARB to order a new part and they replaced it under warranty and had it delivered within three days so we could continue our tour. Great product, outstanding customer service.

The awnings tuck into …


We recently added a weBoost Drive 4G-X to our rig thanks to Wilson Electronics who make the device, which happens to be a hometown export from St. George, Utah.

It's a cell signal booster (up to 70db) with an external antenna that amplifies tower voice and data signals.

These signals are processed for broadcast inside the Montero through this antenna that's placed directly below where my iPhone mounts. This creates a WiFi hotspot for us.

I've noticed a strong increase in signal strength while camping in the Uintahs, with faster, more reliable service in data transfer.

I uploaded four videos from this remote location in less time than my home WiFi which is the fastest that Salt Lake City has to offer. So far, so good.

More to come as we travel and work from the road using the 4G-X to connect where we couldn't before.

Noncanceling Turn Indicator Fix

Out of the blue the left turn indicator won't cancel, so I pulled the fuse and made my way home illegally. Don't tell anyone.

I disassembled the assembly and here's what I found.
After removing the stalk subassembly, inside the case I found what was left of a small black plastic pin stuck inside the white slider that makes and disconnects the circuit when the slider is moved mechanically by the stalk subassembly.  I removed the piece and located its original position on the stalk subassembly.  I drilled a 1/16th inch pilot hole,  and then straightened a 1/16th inch eyelet and cut it to the approximate length of the plastic pin and screwed it into the pilot hole.
Works perfectly.

Transfer Case Shifter Replacement

When I first tested this Monty it shifted into 4 and 4l without any issues, even the rear locker kicked in just fine. After purchase I took it out to wheel more aggressively to baseline its suspension and it wouldn't shift into low range and that's when after a bit of research I learned of this drivetrain's Achilles' heel. In the image of my shifter above, surrounding the lever that engages the transfer case forks is a brown plastic articulating ball or at least what's left of it.

While this particular plastic outlived Mitsubishi's warranty, it went to pieces later in many a Montero/Pajero/Shogun. The fix is not a new aftermarket part - none exists that I could find - but to score a junkyard find of a previous iteration found in earlier vehicles that have a white plastic ball instead of brown.

I swapped mine the other day after sourcing a white-balled shifter from a local Montero enthusiast who picks them up from local pick-a-part yards. The job is pretty stra…