Notes From the Watch Shed: The Road to Burgeo, Part II

When we left Part I, I was ready to look for a Jeep Wrangler.  You might question why I’m looking for a Jeep? The value of a Jeep Wrangler compared to a Toyota 4Runner, for example, is as hotly a debated topic as those of a Seiko SKX009 versus a Citizen Promaster NY0040.

Jeep Wrangler Off Road Trip to Burgeo and Canadian Tire DIY
2014 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited JKU @madrock_watches_adventure

This is a first world problem; I won’t pretend to think that it isn’t.  However, I’ve owned three Jeeps previously and with those experiences, it’s my first choice.  The Jeep product has an unparalleled amount of aftermarket support with one-for-one parts and unlimited upgrade options. Choosing a Jeep wasn’t hard; there were a number on the market in my local area.  My budget precluded me from looking at new, but that didn’t hurt my feelings; I love a good deal.

Jeep Wrangler Off Road Trip to Burgeo and Canadian Tire DIY
Fully loaded with songs from the Newfoundland folk group Simani @madrock_watches_adventure

Over the period of a month and after several visits (a.k.a. “skulking”) to some local used car lots, I focused on a couple higher mileage models located at a Jeep dealership. A 2013 Jeep JKU with 300,000kms and a 2014 Jeep JKU with 280,000kms. The 2013 test drive was actually scary; the vehicle was highly suspect when I noted the interior floors had no carpet but had a fresh rattle-can paint job.  The tires looked unusually small; a quick look under the fenders confirmed the suspension was modified with a “budget boost.”  The test drive itself confirmed my opinion; a baffed Jeep with a solid detail job and paint touch ups.  It was listed at $15,900, needed extensive suspension work, new tires, and a transfer case vacuum switch at minimum: I offered $12,000, and was hastily denied.  The 2014 JKU was listed at $19,000 and was in much better condition; none of the suspension concerns, the 4wd switch worked, and it had very clean carpets.  It also had the soft top, still in factory wrap, thrown in the cargo area.  Serendipitously, the stereo hard drive was loaded with songs from my wife’s favorite Newfoundland folk group, Simani (pronounced Sim-n-I, they hail from the small town of Belleoram, Fortune Bay, N.L.). I couldn’t have been happier when the dealership agreed to my offer and had me in the Jeep by the next morning.

After obtaining a list of all the Jeep recommended fluids and filters, I headed straight for Canadian Tire, a staple for Canadians interested in some do-it-yourself auto repairs.  What is Canadian Tire you might ask? A U.S.A. comparable probably doesn’t exist; a close, but poor example, might be a cross between Walmart – Harbor Freight – and Pep Boys.  All the fluids and filters my Jeep needed, at a third of the cost.  Heading home for a weekend alone, turning wrenches, sounded like a vacation.  Ironically, my wife was in Mexico with her father and one of our kids, enjoying their own vacation.  Starting with an oil change and then moving onto the front and rear differential fluids was easily completed in a lazy Saturday. The transfer case fluid and air filter and cabin filter completed the next day. Sliding under the Jeep, it was easy to see I would need new shocks.  I labored over the decision but chose the Bilstein 4600 series.  Those arrived a few weeks later and were installed in a day.

Things were shaping up for the trip. It was time to build the gear and supply list…


About the author

Jamie Andrews is a watch enthusiast on a budget. He doesn’t own a safety deposit box and he’s slightly cynical about investment pieces.  In his own words, “I think best when I’m in the shed.” You can check out his YouTube channel, Madrock Watches & Adventure, or follow him on Instagram.

Notes from the Watch Shed: rants, reflections, and ruminations on watches and life, by Jamie Andrews.

Please understand that using any links to products on this site may result in us making money.

6 thoughts on “Notes From the Watch Shed: The Road to Burgeo, Part II

  1. Pingback: Notes from the Watch Shed: The Road to Burgeo, Part I – Calibre321

  2. Great post
    Great article! It’s always interesting to read about the thought process and experiences behind purchasing a new vehicle. The author’s passion for Jeep Wranglers comes through and the DIY aspect adds a personal touch.
    Eamon O’Keeffe
    Great DIY Ideas

    Liked by 1 person

  3. @archived_time

    Being an article on your Jeep-related decisions, I wasn’t sure I could relate until you added the Seiko vs. Citizen analogy plus your drive to secure good deals. That’s something everyone agrees to!

    Liked by 1 person

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