Survival of the Fittest
Jimahajer Garage Tacoma Overlander
by Erik Jacobs
Everyone likes to talk about their bug out stuff and how they’re going to stock up on ammo and canned beans so that they can survive the apocalypse. But how many people actually go out there and build the vehicle that they’ll really need to get it done and survive? And, really, do you eat canned beans now? What makes you think you’ll eat them when the zombies are coming for your brains?
In December of 2017, Felixx and Chriss purchased a used 2011 Tacoma TRD Off Road 4×4. It was completely bone stock and was just supposed to double as an overland vehicle for weekend getaways and maybe as a shop/work truck to haul parts during the week. Much like bankruptcy, eating too much pie, and most car projects, what started out gradually then became suddenly a fully dressed overlander that’s all but useless for parts hauling. Maybe for tiny parts. Or RC car parts.
OK, so maybe overlanding and surviving the zombie apocalypse aren’t exactly the same thing. But that doesn’t make the Jimahajer Garage Tacoma Overlander any less rad.
Jimahajer Garage opened in January 2018 and is owned by the same Chris and Felixx. But how did the garage get the “odd” name? In Chris and Felixx’s words:
“HAJIMA” (하지마) is the Korean word for DON’T. It’s something that is embedded into everyone’s brains while growing up: Don’t touch this, don’t shout, don’t jump, don’t run, don’t go wandering, don’t do this… all sorts of limits are barriers are implemented from the moment we are born. But the world is vast, possibilities are out there. Jimahajer is a made-up word formed by flipping “Hajima”, which now means a “DOER”. Our goal is to do things, and do things right.
Chris’ experience spans various automotive endeavors, from tuner vehicles, regular maintenance, to hot rods and more. He eventually joined Steve Lam at RPM Auto Center, which Chris and Steve eventually developed into RPM Offroad Garage over the course of the 5 years he worked at there. Felixx has a background in multimedia and marketing for various studios and corporations, topped off with some automotive knowledge, too. With their powers combined, they are… well, you know the rest.
Felix had always been an outdoors girl, exploring the woods, following animal tracks, jumping off rocks, climbing trees, and getting yelled at by her mother for doing any of it. In 2013, a RAV4 replaced a Civic coupe that was not very practical for any sort of off-road, or even “soft-road” work. The RAV4 was certainly more useful and more practical, but it just wasn’t quite enough as it was a 2WD. Chris had a CR-V, which was more capable than the RAV4, but it still wasn’t cutting it. Chris and Felixx wanted more than fire roads in their future, so the Tacoma was sourced.
That RAV4? It’s the parts hauler now.
Since JH Garage (for short) knew that they would be spending more time on unpaved surfaces than on nice roads, they went right for the best tire they could find. That came in the form of 285/70R17 Nitto Trail Grapplers wrapped around VTX Custom Prototype beadlocks.