With only about a month before Moab, the Four Wheeler crew is hard at work getting vehicles ready for the trip. I have decided to trailer Project Colonel Mustard out, so I got started on the prep and checked off one of the things on the long list on "To Dos" - a new Warn winch.
In keeping with its vintage style and heritage, we settled on the awesome Warn 8274-50 winch, one of the greatest winches of all time (and still the Warn with the fastest no-load line speed). This 120-pound(!) monster was practically designed for vintage Jeeps, so we thought it was the right way to go on our Flattie.
With parts in hand, we stopped by Off Road Evolution in Fullerton, California where my friend and ORE proprietor Mel Wade is currently working on the Colonel for Moab. With a hole in his schedule, Mel offered to install the winch today, so I ripped apart the packaging and gladly handed over the goods.
We mocked everything up and found that the license plate and auxiliary lights would work with the new setup. With everything torqued down, our only remaining concern was with the height of the new winch and the amount of airflow getting to the radiator. But, we reminded ourseleves that this is how they did it in the old days and hope for the best. We'll keep our eye on the temp gauge and if there is any cooling issues, we can always revisit the mounting setup in the future by sinking the winch between the frame rails, allowing a little more air through the grille.
The last piece, an Optima Yellow Top, is on order, so once that comes in we'll complete the install and wire up the winch. In the meantime, we have to start getting to the other items on the list, such as a spare tire carrier and recovery point in the rear, Tuffy center console, some wiring upgrades, Line-X and tie downs for the cargo area, and a few other odds and ends. Think we can get it all done in time?
--Sean P. Holman
Tech Editor - Four Wheeler Magazine