Wow! I had a great conversation over the phone with Pat Muldoon, the VP of Product Development at VWerks, about this new JK8 that is for “Red Jacket Firearms,” the guys on the hit TV series “Son of Guns” that eras on the Discovery Channel. Pat explained to me that you will be able to purchase all the same parts they used to create their monster in the near future. I won’t be shy, I think that the Jeep is awesome. Nice deep colors, great approach/departure angle, monster 40-inch tires, the JK-8 Pickup Conversion Kit, basically something I would do if I had an unlimited budget.
Now to give some back story as to why I got a phone call from Pat Muldoon, began with me getting upset over a post on the Facebook page of VWerks. I commented saying all I see are other manufacturer parts being bolted on and would like to see the modifications they did. When I woke up the next day and went to see if they commented back, I realized that my post was deleted. Which lead to me blogging about it on my website. Which in turn through a strange turn of events my website showed up in a search result where Laura who handles marketing, PR, and Media for VWerks, reached out to me and talked to me about this post.
In that post, it is this one just updated, I made the claim that VWerks is taking credit for Gen-Right‘s bumpers, fender flares, and Superlift‘s suspension as their own creation. And while my original accusations are justified, according to Pat Muldoon, he is good friends with Tony Pellegrino, the President / Founder of Gen-Right, and while Pat’s bumper is based on Tony’s bumper supposedly everything is okay for Pat to produce it. I was wrong about the tube fenders to some degree, because no matter what you do if you produce tube fenders for the JK your going to have parts that look the same out of necessity. Finally, VWerks did use Superlift’s 4″ suspension, just the thing is that they have a deal worked out with Superlift so they can sell the lift kits. So in a way, it is their lift kit, but it will never count in my books.
Now for some things I didn’t know and learned. While you can buy the JK-8 Pickup Conversion Kit, you will be disappointed to find out that this very truck has had the frame rails stretched 6 additional inches in the rear crumple zone (the area behind the rear wheels). Now even though the Jeep is stretched 6 inches, it doesn’t change the factory wheelbase at all. VWerk’s must have been hard-pressed for time to make it to SEMA or something because as of right now the Jeep still has the factory 4.10 gear. But those gears are on their way out to be swapped out for 5.30 gears which will be much more appropriate for the massive BFG 40×14.50R17/C” Krawler T/A KX tires. While those are the factory Dana 44 axles under there, supposedly they have been beefed up with Dynatrac‘s help by replacing the axle shafts, bearings, other odds and ends which are equivalent parts Dana 60, or so Pat said. I thought Fox Shocks seemed weird on this build, so I asked about them and was told that they tried other shocks but the Fox’s seemed the most responsive.
I did get some other off-topic cool tidbits from Pat Muldoon during our short conversation. Hopefully this isn’t suppose to be a secret, but apparently another Jeep is in the work for Red Jacket Firearms and the request for the color “Flat Grey” and a real gun mount for weapons and grenades. I was told the mount for the turret is difficult and that there is some elaborate skim of hoops and mounts going on to ensure plenty of strength. I also found Pat has had some sort of hand with my favorite Mopar Jeeps, the Immortal, blue crush, Pork Chop, and many more. I shouldn’t be surprised though, he said he had been working for Mopar for 23 years.
So, all in all, I had one great conversation with Pat Muldoon and hope to see him in Moab so I can stick him to his work saying I can drive it.