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New Off-Road Parts From SEMA 2016

Posted in How To: Tech Qa on January 25, 2017
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Photographers: Courtesy of Manufacturers

Nothing in the U.S. is quite as fancy, quite as sparkly, quite as showy as Vegas, and the annual Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas is no different. The SEMA Show is the premier automotive specialty products trade event in the world, featuring the hottest products and brightest minds in the automotive aftermarket. It’s a great place to check out all that is new and fancy in the automotive realm. Of course, many of the automotive parts at the SEMA Show are a bit of a stretch when it comes to those of us obsessed with off-roading, but you can bet we here at Four Wheeler can pick through the brand new nano-fiber dusters, organic fair-trade exotic polishes and waxes, comically large wheels and their corresponding low profile tires, and more to separate the new aftermarket off-road offerings “wheat” from the on-road “chaff.” We do this with a healthy dose of “how can we use that” and decades of experience of years in the industry.

Smittybilt

Speaking of bright lights and glamour, Smittybilt was showing off its new XRC Load LED Indicated Winches. The winches feature a LED light that shines on the spool and indicates the load and status of the winch. Of course, the wireless remote also has LED indicator lights that tell you what’s going on. With the winch on and the controller connected, the LEDs on both the controller and winch shine blue. During winching the lights turn to green and then vary in intensity and change to yellow and eventually red before the maximum capacity of the winch is met. The lights, besides looking cool, keep you aware of the winches status preventing damage before the dreaded release of electrical smoke, which indicates winch death and continued vehicular stuckedness. If the winch’s indicator lights go to red and blink, you can stop, reposition, and/or add a snatch block to reduce the load on the winch. By the time you read this, the LED Load Indicated Smittybilt winches should be available in the 9,500-, 12,000-, 15,000-, and 17,500-pound ratings with steel cable or synthetic rope from your favorite Smittybilt distributor.
Info: Smittybilt, 888/717-5797, smittybilt.com

Pro Comp

Pro Comp’s new four-link long-travel Super Duty suspension is cool not only because it comes in 4-, 6-, and 8-inch-lift applications for the new ’17 Ford F-250 and F-350 but also because it is available with Pro Comps patent-pending and huge 4 1/2-inch-bodied coilover shocks for the taller lifts. These shocks use size and cutting edge design to provide crisp handling with compression and rebound damping for these brand-new trucks. The suspension takes these Fords to a true four-link with track bar or panhard bar. Add in that powerful 6.7L Power Stroke and the big Pro Comp coilovers and you end up with a large truck that performs nimbly at speed in the dirt. With plans to extend the coilover technology into other applications, Pro Comp will soon have most of the popular trucks covered too. Info: Pro Comp, 800/776-0767, procompusa.com

Rubicon Express

Rubicon Express has long been known for its high-quality Jeep suspension parts, and at the 2016 SEMA Show, the company introduced a new Extreme Duty Forged Front Track Bar for JK Wranglers with 0-6 inches of lift. The track bar offers beefy forged steel parts that will clear almost any aftermarket diff cover and work with lots of suspension systems, even those from other companies. The track bar also allows on-vehicle adjustment and OE-style poly bushings. Also new from Rubicon Express is the Extreme Duty JK HD Tie Rod. Starting with 1 5/8-inch 4130 chromoly tube with massive forged ends holding 1-ton-style metal-to-metal ball joints, Rubicon Express has set the bar for JK steering strength. The Extreme Duty JK HD Tie Rod fits Dana 30 and Dana 44 axles with stock wheels and can work with some Dana 60 front axles in the JK.
Info: Rubicon Express, 877/367-7824, rubiconexpress.com

Bestop

Bestop knows Jeep tops, and it knows how to show off a new product, which they did at the SEMA Show. The Bestop Trektop NX Glide takes a popular soft-top product and makes it even better by getting rid of those annoying zippers. Instead, the windows slide (or glide really) on a plastic track, making installation and removal of the windows a breeze. The top also features that fastback design almost everyone loves as well as other cool features like the Sunrider flip-back front for some fresh air. Remove the zipperless windows for some open-air cruising without too much sun or fold the top down for that full convertible feel. Bestop claims this is the easiest top on the market to use, and we don’t doubt it. The top is available in black vinyl and premium twill fabric and allows you to get the best out of your Wrangler regardless of the weather is like.
Info: Bestop, 800/845-3567, bestop.com

Flex-a-lite

Long a bastion of some of the best engine cooling products available for Jeeps and other 4x4s, Flex-a-lite came to the SEMA Show with two new workshop-related products to help with cooling and keeping your shop dry. First, the new Flex-a-lite 1000 Airmover has a high-velocity 900-cfm charge of focused airflow to cool your shop, cool vehicles in your shop so you can get to work on them fast, or can be used simply to circulate air in any given direction, clearing smoke or other fumes. The unit is lightweight and compact, making it easy to pack and handle and only draws a very-low 2 amps to keep your taxed shop circuits from popping.
Info: Flex-a-lite, 253/922-2700, flex-a-lite.com

Next up from Flex-a-lite is the 200 Dehumidifier. It’s a commercial-grade dehumidifier that is ideal for car enthusiasts. It can remove up to 74 pints of water per day at 80 degrees Fahrenheit at 60 percent relative humidity and has an on-board humidistat to set the optimum humidity level for the garage. The 200 features a durable rotomolded housing that is compact and lightweight for easy portability, positioning, and storage. Its built-in automatic pump-out allows condensed water to be routed to a floor drain, so there’s no worry about emptying tanks. That should keep your tools and projects rust free when in the shop and could help prevent illness associated with mold and mildew in damp parts of the world.
Info: Flex-a-Lite, 253/922-2700, flex-a-lite.com

Superwinch

Superwinch was on hand at the 2016 SEMA Show with its brand-new line of winches: the EXP Series. This is a new premium winch series that is packed with innovation to the tune of a record eight patents related to the innovative design of the EXP Series. The new EXP Series features 8,000-, 10,000-, and 12,000-pound capacities and are rated IP69K for dust and water resistance. These winches are available with wire or synthetic rope and are available with an integrated solenoid or non-integrated design for remote solenoid box installations. Add to that the long history of Superwinch in the off-road winching world and the fact that the EXP Series will be assembled in the USA from globally sourced parts, and you know this is one solid recovery product.
Info: Superwinch, 800/323-2031, superwinch.com

Bubba Rope

Our friends at Bubba Rope were on hand in Vegas with the company’s new Rock-N-Roll Recovery Kit. The kit is very complete and includes a Bubba Kinetic Energy Recovery Rope (in either 3/4 or 7/8 inch diameter and either 20 or 30 foot), two safe and innovative Gator-Jaw Synthetic Shackles, a 10-foot Tree Hugger tree protector strap, a winch line damper/tool pouch, a pair of 1-inch x 6-foot Bubba Rope camouflage ratchet tie-downs, and a Life “Rock” Guard for the recovery rope. All these bits are contained in a trail mesh roll-up kit bag with trash pocket made in the USA by Spiderwebshade and designed specifically for Bubba Rope. Owning a Bubba Rope recovery rope is a must for any off-roader, and with this kit, you get everything you’ll need and more in order to use the rope in all kinds of vehicle recovery situations.
Info: BubbaRope, 877/499-8494, bubbarope.com

Warn

Between Warn’s reliable winches and recovery products, to sturdy bumpers, and on to its reliable locking hubs, Warn always brings their A-game. Newly released at the 2016 SEMA Show were Warn’s VR series winches in 8,000-, 10,000-, and 12,000-pound capacities. These winches include a waterproof Albright contactor for reliable performance for years to come, Warn’s patented cone brake, and a new tie-plate that makes for quiet operation and increased structural integrity. The VR line is backed by Warn’s Limited Lifetime Warranty.
Info: Warn Industries, 800/543-9276, warn.com

Also new for 2016 was Warn’s Heavy-Duty Epic Recovery Kit. This easily totable recovery bag features water resistant ballistic nylon fabric with built in MOLLE gear attachment points and contoured shoulder straps constructed with breathable fabric. The bag, which can serve as a winch line weight, comes filled with Warn Epic shackles, an Epic snatch block, an Epic tree strap, a premium recovery strap, and gloves. The Heavy-Duty Epic Recovery Kit is available medium-duty (suitable for use with winches up to 12,000 pounds) or heavy-duty (for use with winches up to 18,000 pounds).
Info: Warn Industries, 800/543-9276, warn.com

Warn also had a couple examples of its new Ascent bumpers. These bumpers are constructed out of laser-cut and CNC-formed steel, which is bead blasted after welding for increased powdercoat durability. There are recessed ports and mounts for accessory lights, as well as inset corner steps to aid in bed access. The front bumpers (there are front and rear available) are recessed to accept Warn mid-frame winches up to 12,000-pound capacity.
Info: Warn Industries, 800/543-9276, warn.com

Bilstein

Is there a better way to prove a company’s confidence in a new product than driving a product-equipped booth car more than 400 miles off-road to the 2016 SEMA Show in Las Vegas? We say no, and the folks at Bilstein agree. They equipped the company’s ’15 Toyota Tacoma with a revolutionary new series of shock absorbers: the B8 8112 (ZoneControl CR shocks) up front and B8 8100 (bypass shocks) in the rear. Add in a bevy of media types and Bilstein muckety-mucks to the trip and failure was not an option. As expected, the truck and shocks performed flawlessly and were then displayed in Bilstein’s booth covered in mud and dust. The ZoneControl (CR) technology provides a position sensitive damping system on these direct-fit shocks with three compression zones (providing maximum bottom out control) and two rebound zones, controlled by three independent working pistons. Additionally, the rear B8 8100 bypass direct-fit shocks have high-flow bypass tubes that offer position sensitive damping with independent external adjustment for rebound and compression. The Tacoma isn’t the only truck with new shock offerings from Bilstein, so check out the company’s website for more applications.
Info: Bilstein USA, bilsteinus.com

Teraflex

The 2016 SEMA Show was a great venue for the suspension experts at Teraflex to announce its all-new line of shock absorbers. Teraflex’s Falcon Shocks are an entirely new product range of high performance shocks and stabilizers developed exclusively for the unique needs of a demanding Jeep Wrangler market. The Teraflex Falcon Nexus Equal Force Stabilizer is a JK Wrangler-specific steering stabilizer that offers equal force side-to-side resistance for consistent steering wheel response. This allows for balanced return-to-center equilibrium of the 5/8-inch, induction-hardened, low-porosity chrome shaft that resides within a 2.125-inch-diameter 6061 hard-anodized aluminum body. Damping comes from Lucas Oil full-synthetic shock oil, and a one-piece Teflon-coated bronze piston wear band with O-ring. Teraflex’s innovative mounting design helps keep the body of the stabilizer up and out of harm’s way. The Falcon Nexus Equal Force stabilizer is available as a 2.1 or an adjustable 2.2 version that allows steering feel tuning for varying conditions.
Info: Teraflex, 801/713-3314, teraflex.com

For the ultimate in performance from Teraflex’s new Falcon shocks look no further than the Falcon Series 3.1 and adjustable 3.3 piggyback shock absorbers. Designed specifically for the JK Wrangler, these shocks feature 2.25-inch-diameter hard anodized shock bodies that fit like smaller shocks front and rear because of innovative mounting designs. Also, with the shock reservoir piggybacked on the shock body oil transfer isn’t restricted like it would be with the oil moving through a hose and there is less of a chance of a leak from a hose or hose fitting. The 3.3 and 3.1 Series shocks are available for 0-6-inch-lifted Jeep Wranglers and are available as a set of four shocks. The Falcon Series 3.3 shocks are available with an adjustment knob that allows for quick tuning of your Jeeps suspension. The necessary parts can also be added to the Falcon 3.1 Series shocks at a later date for a modular shock absorbing system.
Info: Teraflex, 801/713-3314, teraflex.com

For incredible performance at a great price and vehicle-specific design, the Teraflex Falcon Series 2 monotube shock has many of the same benefits of the 3.1 and 3.3 series shocks with a lower price. With a front offset stud design creating additional frame clearance for the 2.25-inch-diameter 6061 aluminum hard anodized shock tube the Falcon Series 2 monotube shock provides optimal performance. That’s the largest shock body that will fit on a JK without modifications. The Falcon Series 2 features include synthetic oil from Lucas Oil and a 3/4-inch induction hardened, low porosity chrome shaft to prevent shaft buckling.
Info: Teraflex, 801/713-3314, teraflex.com

Dynatrac

The name Dynatrac is synonymous with the finest axles and drivetrain components that money can buy. Dynatrac high-performance axle and drivetrain assemblies are designed using the finest materials, processes and engineering available, and its products are backed by the best service and warranty in the business. Luckily for anyone into off-roading, Dynatrac’s hands are ever busy designing cool new parts. On hand at the 2016 SEMA Show were Dynatrac’s 40-spline DynaLoc locking hubs. These 100 percent made-in-the-USA hubs work with Dynatrac’s ProRock XD60 and ProRock 80 front 40-spline axles and are said to be three times stronger than the competition’s comparable locking hubs. They also feature a low profile design that keeps them tucked inside the wheel and safe from trail debris. They’re designed to engage and disengage with 1/8th of a turn, and their unique gear design won’t disengage under high torque loads.
Info: Dynatrac, 714/596-4461, dynatrac.com

Filling a gap for rear axle performance between Dynatrac’s semi-float ProRock XD60 and the huge and bulletproof ProRock 80 is the Dynatrac standard-cut, full-float ProRock XD60. This all-new Dynatrac axle is the strongest yet lightest-weight axle in its class. This axle is designed specifically for Jeep Wrangler and other 4x4 builds using 37- to 40-inch-diameter tires. The strength of the axle starts with a new and re-engineered nodular iron centersection that maximizes ground clearance and can be ordered with available oversized carrier and pinion bearings, providing a 50 percent load capacity increase over standard Dana 60 bearing sets. Add in the standard-cut design for additional strength in a rear axle configuration and available 35- or 40-spline axleshafts and variable thickness (to maximize strength to weight depending on application) 4-inch OD axletubes and you have one strong rear axle.
Info: Dynatrac, 714/596-4461, dynatrac.com

Baer Brakes

Baer Brakes showed up at the 2016 SEMA Show with lots of fresh parts for the car market and a few items that can be used in custom 4x4s. The Remaster billet brake master cylinder is one part that fits the bill. Available with GM, Dodge, and Ford bolt patterns, the Remaster is a compact direct replacement master available in a 15/16-, 1-, and 1 1/8-inch bores, fitting the bill for just about any project. The compact billet body offers lots of features: right- or left-hand port configurations, screw-on billet caps (to prevent brake fluid spills), and more. There is also an integrated mount for a Baer adjustable proportioning valve machined into the bottom of the master’s body. The master is available in a wide variety of colored finishes and polishes to match your project.
Info: Baer Brakes, 602/233-1411, baer.com

Dickies

Some say that the clothes make the man. We don’t know about that, but it’s hard for man or woman to make much without the right clothes. We’re hard on 4x4s and even harder on clothes, and the products we’ve had from Dickies have stood up to our unintentional destructive testing on the trail and in the shop way better than most clothes do. The 2016 SEMA Show was an opportunity for Dickies to announce their new automotive-aimed website: dickiesautomotive.com, a new one-stop-shop for Dickies automotive apparel, featuring the latest automotive styles and product details, as well as videos and exclusive promotions. The site was designed specifically for the automotive shop owner, worker, or enthusiast who loves the Dickies brand. It includes a dedicated customer service team with automotive industry experts and offers custom in-house embroidery of company logos on Dickies apparel with the ability to store logos for future orders.
Info: Dickies, 844/656-1702, dickiesautomotive.com

Spicer

The Spicer name is as old as four-wheeling itself. At the 2016 SEMA Show, Spicer unveiled its 1350 Series driveshafts. These ’shafts are designed as a bolt-in replacement for the original equipment on both two-door (front only) and four-door (front and rear) Jeep Wrangler JK models. The driveshafts feature Spicer Life Series 1350 U-joints and a longer slip length of 6 inches. The slip assembly is located at the transfer case next to the double-cardan joint to minimize damage and dirt/road debris contamination. The driveshaft is constructed of 2-inch, 0.120-wall tubing for optimal clearance, enhanced strength, and durability. Each ’shaft comes with a new Spicer 1350 Series transfer case yoke and connects directly to the Spicer 1350 Series yokes on the Ultimate Dana 60 axles, making for a perfect upgrade when the JK owner goes to these replacement heavy-duty axles.
Info: Spicer, 800/621-8084, spicerparts.com

Rigid

The Rigid Adapt LED lightbars are the world’s first off-road lighting products that adjust instantly to driving conditions. Adapt Active View technology relies on a patented configuration of advanced LEDs and optics to modulate the intensity of the LEDs, creating eight selectable beam patterns. The Adapt then senses vehicle speed to determine optimum beam pattern selection. There are no moving parts, so Adapt offers the same rugged construction and will withstand all the harsh off-road conditions as other Rigid products. A dash-mounted controller allows beam pattern selection, accent color selection, and selection of the Adaptive Mode. The dash controller is backlit for easy nighttime use and includes a visual representation of beam pattern width and accent color and even offers two programmable presets for the user’s preferred light settings. All Rigid Adapt LED lightbars include the Adapt fixture, the dash controller, and a wiring harness. Lots of varying mounting configurations are available for the Adapt series for a wide variety of popular rigs.
Info: Rigid, 855/760-5337, rigidindustries.com

ARB

Bringing the outback to Vegas involves traveling a long distance, but we’re glad the guys from ARB showed up at the 2016 SEMA Show with some of their new offerings because we use the company’s products off-road frequently. One item that any dedicated dirt head would love to own is a freezer/fridge and ARB has sold some of the best 12V-operated freezer fridges out there. If that wasn’t good enough, ARB upped the game with the company’s all-new All-Weather Fridge Freezer. The unit includes features such as a stainless steel body with ARB embossing, a unique infinite-position gas spring-assisted lid, anodized aluminum latches, heavy-duty cast stainless steel hinges, tamper-proof bolts for permanent mounting, weather protected control panel, a recessed back for power cable storage, easy-carry handle design, rubberized mounting feet, built-in three-stage battery protection, a drain plug, and more. The unit has 63 quarts of space, and options include a wiring loom and wireless remote fridge monitor. Coming soon is an optional fridge slide, tie-down system, and permanent mounting system.
Info: ARB USA, 425/264 1391, arbusa.com

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