As fitting as it would have been to run the LeMons Rally on 3/5 gears, I didn’t relish the though of a roadside transmission swap, and going through a quart of gear oil every 500km is getting old fast, so I figured I should get it out of the way sooner than later.

I took a break cause it started raining which means the ground is getting wet which means the jack stands became dangerous. Everything came out last weekend (Tuesday and Wednesday actually because my work week starts on Thursday) and everything got swapped over from the old transmission to the new one yesterday, except the shifter handle cause I haven’t quite figured out how to get it off, and the new trans got bolted in today. Still need to put the tcase, starter, clutch slave, and driveshafts back in, but I’ll hold off until I can go pick up some gear oil so I can actually run the thing to align the tcase.

Then once all that’s done, I’ve got brakes to replace, a handful of sensors, and get started on the plastidip paint theme (open to suggestions on that), and figure out some crude but effective and more importantly cheap way of keeping cool in August, in Death Valley, in a steel box that can be too warm even in air temps of -40. Also a stereo of some kind would be nice. I can probably rig something up from the collection of XJ parts, but would also like USB charging capability and possibly CB if at all possible.

My co-driver and I have work booked off, and I also just finished booking hotels for the Rally portion of the trip, likely camping on the way down, but we haven’t even planned the rout yet. Just over a month to go... Still can’t believe I’m crazy enough to do it.