May 2018 Rig of the Month: Dennx!!!
We'd like to congratulate Dennx - Dennis for having the May 2018 Rig of the Month!
Hayden: Tell us a bit about yourself (Family/pets, work/school, hobbies/interests, location, etc.)
: I’ve always had a passion for the outdoors, backpacking, fishing, off roading, camping and yes, I’m an Overlander too! I have two 9 month old lab mixes, one 9 year old daughter and one wife.
I’ve owned my business, iLounge.com since 2004 and I’m a graphic designer full-time. I also own and operate RedCanOutiffters.com where I design and develop merchandise for Toyota off road enthusiasts. We moved near Boise, ID in 2016 from Southern California and it’s been nice having the great outdoors just minutes away.
Hayden: How did you come to own your FJ Cruiser?
: Back in 2012 I was out photographing a waterfall and was driving back home through the mountains on a fire road. I was in a trusty cargo box, the Honda Element. I wanted something more capable off road and decided to hunt for a new 4x4. I looked at Xterras and FJs, but the Xterra proved to be inferior to the FJ. I remember seeing an FJ on a ski trip in 2007. There was a yellow one in a parking lot. I looked it over and thought it was cool as hell. I found a used 2010 silver FJ at, of all places, a Jeep dealer. I went. I looked. I bought. It’s since been transformed into another animal.
Hayden: Is the FJ Cruiser your first off-road vehicle? If not, what was the first vehicle you took wheeling?
: I had a Honda Element 4x4, but never did anything serious with it. The FJ was and is my first “real” 4x4.
Polk DB 6.5" Componenst (front doors and dash)
Polk DB 6.5" Coax (rear seat)
Polk DB 4" Coax (rear pillars)
MTX Audio 10" subwoofer (rear cargo shelf)
Alpine PDX 4 channel
Alpine PDX 5 channel
Metra Axxess Steering Wheel control module
Metra 70-8114 Steering Wheel Control Harness (factory AUX works with new head unit)
Scosche head unit install kit
Stinger power and audio cables
Monster speaker cables
Subthump subwoofer box (rear cargo shelf)
Expedition One Diamond Trail Series Bumper
Expedition One Swing Out Rear Bumper
Trail Gear Sliders
Ricochet HD Skid Plate
Ricochet Front Lower Control Arm Skids
Roktek Rear Control Arm Skids
FJToyman Rear Shock Skids
IBS-DBS Dual Battery System
Sears Die Hard 31m Battery
Odyssey Group 34 Battery
sPOD Switch Controller
sPOD Remote Switch Module
sPOD Bluetooth Remote Control with iOS App
AC Vent Panel Switch Mod - 6 OTRATTW LED Switches (lights)
Blue Sea Fuse Box
Blue Sea Power Outlet
Blue Sea USB Outlet
Relocated Superwinch Solenoid in Project Box
Blue Sea SafetyHub
40" Baja Designs LED Stealth Light Bar (roof)
(2) Baja Designs XL Pro LEDs (front bumper)
(2) Baja Designs XL Pro LEDs (cowl)
(2) Baja Designs SII LED lights (blind corners)
(2) Baja Designs SII LED lights (rear roof)
(2) Acrolights LED Driving Lights (front bumper)
(2) Acrolights LED Reverse Lights (rear bumper)
LED dome/map/mirror lights
Icon Stage 1
Icon Tubular UCAs
OME Rear Heavy Springs
Icon Rear Control Arms (lower and upper)
Icon Panhard Bar
Tires & Wheels
Goodyear Wrangler Duratracs
17" Method Mesh Wheels
Yaesu FTM-400DR dual band ham radio
Comet dual band antenna
Comet lip mount
Bandi CB Mount
Bajarack Low Profile Rack
Fourtreks Hi-Lift Mount
Fourtreks Shovel/Axe Mount
Springtail MPAC Rear Door + Molle Bags (First Aid, Survival, Misc)
Springtail MPAC Saddle + Molle Bags (CB, Knife, Leatherman, Flashlight)
Industrial Forming Panamint Rolltop Console Cover
Custom Built Drawers (Recovery Gear and Tools)
Tie-downs mounted on top of drawer
Front Runner Wolf Packs
Superwinch Talon 9500 with Synthetic Rope
Factor 55 Thimble
Hi-Lift 48" Xtreme Jack
Hi-Lift Lift Mate
Hi-Lift Tube Adaptor
Hi-Lift Jack ORB Base
Fiskars Chopping Axe
Fiskars Digging Shovel
ARB Snatch Strap
ARB Tree Saver Strap
Smittybuilt Black Shackles
Powertank 10# CO2 with X-Flo Regulator
Powertank Tire Gauge
Powertank Tire Plug Kit
HalGaurd Fire Extinguisher
Ellis Precision AT Stealth Black Shifters
Ellis Precision Stealth Black Ebrake
Ram Mount for iPhone
Ram Mount for UltraGuage
Ram Mount for iPad 2
Airaid Cold Air Intake
Borla Dirt Sport Exhaust
BD Customz Cowl Light Mounts
Shrockworks Washer Bottle
Shrockworks 2nd Battery Tray
Hayden: Any modifications unique to only your FJ Cruiser?
: My rear cargo box has gone through two different designs. The first were two side-by-side cargo drawers and the latest is one drawer and fridge slide. The original design plans have taken on a life of it’s own in the forums. It’s been built by many forum members. (https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...wer-build.html
Hayden: What modification has been your favorite or has been the most worth the money/time/effort that you’d recommend it to someone else?
: See above
Hayden: What upgrade has been your least favorite, or what modification would you do differently if you had to do it over again?
: This is tough. I’ve been very happy with the way I’ve set up my FJ and I haven’t had any major problems. The only other thing I can think of is replacing my Icon tubular upper control arm uniball joints to the new sealed Icon Delta Joints to prevent squeaking. Those have been the only annoying problem.
Hayden: What future modifications do you have planned for your FJC?
: I will soon be installing a Viair Heavy Duty Onboard Air System as part of a write-up for Toyotas, Cruisers and Trucks magazine. I currently use CO2 for air and I may keep that as a backup, but it’s not convenient to fill it up in my area.
Hayden: Where all have you been with your FJ Cruiser? What trail/park/location is your favorite?
: I’ve been on a lot of trails in my FJ including, California, Arizona, Utah, and my favorite is the San Juan Mountains in Colorado and a close second is trails in and around Death Valley, CA.
Hayden: What park/location have you not been to yet that you would like to take your FJ to?
:Believe it or not I haven’t been to Moab. :\ I’d also like to do the Shafer Trail in Canyonlands National Park, Utah.
Hayden: Has anyone on the forum inspired your build or been a go to resource for you?
: There have been a lot of FJs that have influenced by build and many posts that have helped answer questions. Wikid, Dapurak, Shadow-Warrior, Volhoo, WickedPSI and so many more. Thank you all!
Hayden: Can you tell us about your involvement and experience with the TCT Magazine?
: I contributed a review article back when the Ultimate Edition FJ was released in 2014. I’ve been a Contributing Editor, Senior Editor and recently an Associate Editor since I haven’t written as much for them while moving to Idaho in 2016. I hope to change that this year with more install write-ups and other articles as needed. I’m excited about our new redesigned magazine. It kicks ass. I’ve enjoyed going to and covering various 4x4 events for TCT as official press. I’ll be heading to Overland Expo later in May and maybe SEMA later in the year.
Hayden: What is your local FJ Community like? Any get-togethers, trail runs, or meet and greets?
: It’s funny. I’ve only met a few FJ owners since moving to the Boise area, but I see plenty of them on the streets. Some wave, some don’t. I’ve started going on trail runs and camp-outs with Northwest Overland Treasure Valley Chapter. I hope to do more with them as the camping season ramps up. We have regular monthly meetings at various local breweries. It’s a good group and I enjoy trail time with them.
Hayden: What has been the most memorable experience with your FJ Cruiser?
: The most memorable would have to be trail time making new friends. I’ve been fortunate to have met so many on trails runs and at events. Some of them have become good friends and that’s the best part of it.
Hayden: Any additional thoughts about your FJ or FJ Cruisers in general that you’d like to share?
: The FJ has literally changed my life. It’s made me great new friends, taught me a slew of things about gear and has made for the best of times camping and offroading. I will never sell it. Never.