EEXP: Maxtrax

EEMaxtraxReview 2

Shiny new Maxtrax ready for adventure.

As Maxtrax says; “take the easy way out!” I knew from day one of designing the EEXP that I would be integrating Maxtrax into the build. These light weight, durable, UV stable, orange (I love orange!) recovery tools should be an essential part of any overland or off-road vehicle, especially if that vehicle is designed for single vehicle off-road travel. I haven’t found a more effective and easy to use recovery tool that works in such a diverse range of situations as Maxtrax.

EEMaxtraxReview 3

Maxtrax were literally integrated into the EEXP build. Mounting pins are permanently mounted through the “hull” of the camper.

MSRP: $299.00 + Shipping (BUY NOW)

Weight: 7.9 lbs (set of 2)

Size: 45.27″ L/13″ W/2.75″ H (each)

Colors: Orange, Black, Titanium Grey, FJ Blue, FJ Red, FJ Yellow, Desert Tan, Olive Drab, Pink, Pure Purple, and an always changing assortment of limited editions

Available Accessories: Fixing & Linking Kit, Telltale Leashes, Mounting Pins, Rear Wheel Harness, Carry Bag

EEMaxtraxReview 4

A deep soft gravely sandy beach along the banks of the Stikine River in BC, Canada. I thought I was in 4wd, but the front axel was not engaged due to a mechanical failure. I was able to dig out and drive out quickly with the Maxtrax. Rinsed them off quick in the river and back on the road we went.

Maxtrax started in Brisbane, Australia in 2005 creating recovery tools for off-roading. Their signature Maxtrax recovery tool is the most easy to use and effective self recovery tool available. It works great in sand, mud, snow and just about any other environment you can throw at them. Besides being an impressive “sand ladder,” Maxtrax also work great as a shovel and even as a portable boat ramp. They feature UV stabilized reinforced nylon construction, comfortable carry handles, a design that nests together, an underside that grips the ground, are offered in a wide range of colors and include a two year warranty.

EEMaxtraxReview 5

Encountered a similar 4wd mechanical issue while traveling some back “roads” in Baja, Mexico. The soft sand in the bottom of this creek bed was quick to bury the relatively heavy EEXP.

EEMaxtraxReview 6

Some quick shoveling, wedging the Maxtrax under the drive wheels, some left foot braking and smooth throttle and the rig was quickly extracted.

There are only three negatives that can be said about Maxtrax. One is that they are not inexpensive, but this is one of those cases where you get what you pay for. The second issue is that if you do have a lot of wheel spin when using them they will melt. The key to this is to know that wheel spin is bad; for the Maxtrax, the tires and for a controlled speedy recovery. If you exercise quality vehicle control, left foot breaking works great with an automatic transmission, than wheel spin will not be an issue. The only other possible issue you could find with Maxtrax is that they don’t work as well as heavier and stiffer alternatives for creating ramps and bridging obstacles. The key to this is to know the limitations of your tools and proceed accordingly. I’ve found that when you stack two Maxtrax on top of each other they can actually make great bridging tools, even for heavy vehicles, when the span to be bridged isn’t to wide.

EEMaxtraxReview 7

We used Maxtrax to raise the back of the EEXP just enough to get off a rock that had high centered the rig on the rear diff while traversing Lockhart Basin Rd in Moab, UT.

Everything is a compromise. The light weight, durability and ease of use out weight the small cons associated with Maxtrax. I highly recommend getting at least one set of these units for any vehicle based adventure where you might find yourself getting stuck, whether that be at the beach, in the snow or in the mud. They also work really well on 2wd vehicles, and can be a great alternative to costly 4×4 conversions on some vehicles, like many vans, which you might still want to take to remote locations where getting stuck is possible, but where you don’t actually require 4wd.

EEMaxtraxReview 8

While winter camping in Breckenridge, CO we got plowed into a parking spot. The rig was in 2wd, the temps were crazy cold, there was a large snow bank in front and behind and lots of ice under the tires. The Maxtrax worked great as shovels and then for the needed traction to gain some momentum.

Maxtrax Instructions For Use:

1. When your vehicle is unable to proceed, STOP. Spinning wheels only bury your vehicle deeper

2. Clear out obstructions around tires and underbody components. Maxtrax works great as a shovel.

3. Wedge Maxtrax firmly against tire tread in front of the direction of desired travel.

4. Clear area of people and animals before climbing back into your vehicle.

5. Engage 4×4 low, 1st gear and gently accelerate. DO NOT SPIN YOUR WHEELS!

6. If tires don’t immediatly grip the Maxtrax and drag them underneath, stop and reposition so that they are firmly agaisnt the tire’s tread. Try again, again avoiding tire spin.

7. Once traction is attained, maintain momentum until vehicle reaches firm ground, or as far as you can travel before needing to repeat the process.

8. Retreive your Maxtrax. You don’t want to forget these invaluable recovery aids!

EEMaxtraxReview 9

While traveling on the Dalton Hwy in Alaska the EEXP got quite dirty! Luckily Maxtrax are super easy to clean off. Quick tip: If you have a setup like this and use a lock, be sure to spray the lock cylinder with WD40 and tape over the key slot. This will keep the lock from seizing up, making it much easier to remove the Maxtrax when you need them.

EEMaxtraxReview 1(Disclaimer: Exploring Elements received a set of Maxtrax from Outback Proven, Maxtrax’s previous US distributor, for inclusion in the EEXP build. No other compensation was provided and Exploring Elements has no other affiliation with Maxtrax at the time of this review.)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...