Over land­ing a JK Wran­gler and Trailer

How to make the most out of what you have

Jp Magazine - - Table Of Contents -

When Brian Barn­hill pur­chased his ’10 Wran­gler, his focus was on hav­ing a

good wheel­ing ve­hi­cle. With no kids and trail ex­plo­ration as his pri­mary focus, he liked what the two-door of­fered over the longer Un­lim­ited JK. As his build pro­gressed over the years, so did his use for it. While trails were still im­por­tant, he found that he and his wife es­pe­cially en­joyed camp­ing off-the-grid.

Happy with the way the Jeep per­formed on- and off-road, he de­cided that rather than trade out his two-door for a four-door model, he would in­stead move his camp­ing es­sen­tials to a sep­a­rate trailer. This cus­tom trailer setup would be built in such a way that it would be durable enough to tow to re­mote des­ti­na­tions and act as base­camp for when he’s ready to hit the trail. We were in­trigued with the setup, so we caught up with the fifth-gen­er­a­tion blue­berry farmer in coastal North Carolina to get a closer look.


The Jeep came long be­fore the trailer, as did his ini­tial build di­rec­tion. Up front, the stock front bumper was swapped in fa­vor of a JCR Mauler stubby. It was paired with a Warn XD 9000 winch with Spy­dura syn­thetic line and a Fac­tor 55 FlatLink. Like the front, the rear bumper was sourced from JCR and is a Cru­sader se­ries with the Ad­ven­ture tire car­rier op­tion. This setup al­lows Barn­hill to se­cure a pair of Ro­topaX fuel con­tain­ers,

A JK built for long-term ex­plo­ration

a Hi-Lift Jack, and his full­size spare.

Barn­hill picked the Smit­ty­bilt rocker guards be­cause they also al­low him to eas­ily ac­cess the roof of the Jeep. Adding front-to-back pro­tec­tion un­der the JK are an as­sort­ment of skid­plates from EVO Mfg. Sus­pend­ing the rig is a med­ley of parts from Ru­bi­con Ex­press, Fox, and Rock Krawler. In to­tal, the JK has around 4 inches of lift, which is aided by front and rear Cur­rie An­tirocks. This leaves plenty of room for the Jeep’s 37x12.50R17 Nitto Trail Grap­plers to travel un­in­ter­rupted. To en­sure the mud-ter­rain ra­di­als stay se­curely on the wheels at sin­gle-digit pres­sures off-road, each was bolted to a 17x9 Ma­chete bead­lock from KMC Wheels.


Nes­tled next to the 3.8L V-6 you’ll find an ARB com­pres­sor along with a Gen­e­sis dual-bat­tery sys­tem and twin Odyssey PC1500 bat­ter­ies. Aside from a Mag­naFlow ex­haust, the V-6 re­mains mostly stock. It’s backed by the stock six-speed man­ual trans­mis­sion and NVG241 trans­fer case. The fac­tory driv­e­lines have been re­placed with a more durable set from Adam’s Drive­shafts that now spin a Dy­na­trac ProRock Ul­ti­mate 44 front axle and Dy­na­trac XD60 out back.

By Ali Man­sour jped­i­tor@jp­magazine.com Pho­tog­ra­phy Ali Man­sour

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