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#MTSEMA18 - SEMA Show Cream of the Crop

Posted in Events on November 2, 2018
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Photographers: Ken BrubakerChristian Hazel

SEMA. You’ve heard the name. You probably know it’s the be-all and end-all of aftermarket shows anywhere. Everything relevant to the automotive aftermarket is there, and just about everyone involved is there, too. Usually I end up going to SEMA early and often. I’m pretty sure I was there when the doors opened last year (not for the setup days) and I remember getting pushed out as the doors closed.

This year is different. With lots of tech projects currently going on and lots of deadlines looming I, like many of you, am currently at home working. That means that instead of wandering the halls I am digitally browsing the articles posted by my friends and colleagues . . . like my boss and friend Christian Hazel and the incomparable Ken Brubaker from Four Wheeler magazine. The Four Wheeler Network,, is a great source for the visual side of SEMA.

SEMA is definitely a must-see of any car nut, but a lot of what’s there is basically irrelevant to what I use in the shop or on the trail. It’s pretty much impossible to see everything at SEMA during the whole week, let alone two days, but two days are all I’ve got. I’ve got to plan ahead by checking out what others have seen so I can go have a closer look and avoid all the brodozers, lowriders, diaper rubbies, and so on. Basically separate the dirty 4x4 wheat from the shiny unused chaff. Here are some of the rigs I definitely want to go see firsthand. I can’t wait until tomorrow morning to go do it!

I want to see this because it is a Camel Trophy–inspired Land Rover, if not an original CT support rig. Must see!
Welderup! Sounds good to us. What is that? A 4BT running the generator? Need to see more!
Welderup! A 4BT running the generator?
Because FJ45. I love old FJ45s and have spent an unusual amount of time in one in Egypt for some dude from North Cacolaki.
Yeah, I like International Harvesters, tractors . . .
I’ve seen this a few times, but I’d like to look at it again and again. And again.
One of the reasons I’m not at SEMA is because of my project Early Bronco. I like this Bronco. I wish mine looked like this one!
Haven’t seen this clean FSJ up close. I want to.
I love retro. I love Jeeps.
Another tractor. When did these things go from piles of crap to SEMA show cars?
A Warn 8274 and just enough patina and retro to make my heart go pitter pat.
I’m guessing Iron Cross makes bumpers and maybe fender flares. Whatever. I like the stance of this JL. Apparently JLs are hot—they seem to be everywhere.
If you like Jeeps then you probably like Scramblers. This is one clean CJ-8. I want to take a closer look.
Kevin Stearns is a friend in the industry, a UA alumnus, and more. I haven’t had a chance to climb over his newest race truck.
I wish these Cruisers were common in the U.S. I’d sure like to play with a rusty cheap old farm truck. Sadly, they are expensive and rare here.
Definitely not feeling the bedliner “paint,” but I love the wide axles, well-trimmed fenders, and Comanche style of this Jeep.
I’ll take bare-bones, get-the-job-done, and simple over ghetto-fabulous, shiny, leather, and electronic any day.
Overcomplicating something that works, or building something useful? I’ll try to suspend judgment until I can see it firsthand.
The Skyjacker Bronco was with us on our 2018 Ultimate Adventure. It’s a work of art, and it sounds amazing! I could look at it all day, and then again tomorrow.
Because military, green, and big!
Not sure that my Early Bronco will ever be this nice, but maybe one day!

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