The Moab Easter Jeep Safari is the largest trail ride event in the nation. The two-day vendor show has morphed into a miniature SEMA Show, with tons of cool new widgets and gadgets making their debut, all intended to meet the needs of off-roaders. Here is the neat new stuff we saw when we were cruising through the show. Search for the hashtag #moabexperience2018 to see all the incredible coverage of the 2018 Easter Jeep Safari.
Serious Spidertrax Axle Joints
No doubt as a result of 37s and 40s becoming the new norm on trail rigs, Spidertrax (spidertrax.com
) has developed these super-beefy axle U-joints to address a known weak link. Larger than 1480-series joints and manufactured entirely from 300M alloy, these U-joint “caps” are retained within the cross with a mechanical locking mechanism (no more snap rings) and are egg-shaped to prevent them from spinning within the axle yokes. Heavy-duty needle bearings prevent the metal-on-metal contact of some other HD joints, and the joints require the use of special Spidertrax yokes. Initial release will focus on Dana 60 and larger applications.
Maxbilt Reverse Light Kit
Most Jeep T-90 transmissions had no provision for a reverse light switch, and up until now adding a switch involved modifying the top of the shifter in some way. Maxbilt (maxbilt.com
) has come up with this simple solution. A small bracket bolts to two existing shifter bolts and positions a switch on the back of the open shift rail, which depresses the switch when the transmission is put in reverse. It doesn’t get much easier than that!
JL Bolt-On Ram Assist
West Texas Off Road (westtexasoffroad.wixsite.com
), home of the Redneck Ram and other innovative steering products, has debuted a bolt-on bracket system that makes it easy to add ram-assist steering to the new JL Wrangler. The brackets use existing mounting points on the axle for a no-weld installation. The company is currently finalizing its program for tapping into the JL power steering box but reports that the system works with the JL’s factory electric power steering pump.
BFGoodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM3
It has been teased for months, but BFGoodrich (bfgoodrich.com
) officially unveiled the KM3 during Easter Jeep Safari. Although it doesn’t look radically different from the immensely popular KM2, the new KM3 is better in almost every way. The refined tread pattern improves the tire’s ability to self-clean as well as vastly increases lateral traction. The tire carcass is a direct descendent of BFG’s racing tires for improved strength and puncture resistance. The company plans to offer the KM3 in sizes up to 39 inches tall.
Skyjacker JL Suspension
Not surprisingly, all of the suspension manufacturers made developing lift kits for the JL Wrangler a huge priority. Skyjacker Suspensions (skyjacker.com
) released both a 2- and 2 1/2-inch system and a 3 1/2- and 4-inch system, and had several Jeeps on display with the new kits. Both kits feature dual-rate coil springs and sway bar link extensions, as well as your choice of either Black Max or M95 shocks. The taller system adds an adjustable front track bar and a rear track bar bracket. The company says kits are in stock and shipping now.
Ten Factory Driveshafts
Ten Factory (tenfactory.com
), well known for its line of heavy-duty chromoly axleshafts, now offers bolt-in front and rear driveshafts for select Jeep applications. Featuring heavy-wall tubing and high-quality CV joints, these driveshafts are a direct replacement for the troublesome Rzeppa joints used on the JK. The new driveshafts are available for JKs, TJs, and LJs, and will soon be available for the JL.
Renegade LED Lights
JW Speaker (jwspeaker.com
) has released direct replacement LED headlight assemblies for the Jeep Renegade. These complete units are a major upgrade over the stock headlights and offer plug-and-play installation with no modifications to the factory wiring harness required. In addition to the new Renegade headlights, JW Speaker offers upgraded headlight assemblies for most popular Jeep applications and are made in the USA.
Gladiator XComp Tires
All the new X Comp M/T and A/T tires by Gladiator (gladiatortires.com
) come with a 100 percent free replacement guarantee. In a nutshell, if an XComp tire fails before the end of its tread life, Gladiator will replace it for free. The X Comp M/T is available in popular sizes up to 40 inches tall with a 17-inch wheel, as well as 37s in 17-, 20-, 22-, and 24-inch wheel sizes.
JKS HD Adjustable Track Bar
Amongst the sea of new JL products on display at Moab was a new JKS (jksmfg.com
) heavy-duty adjustable track bar. Constructed of heavy-wall DOM tubing with a proprietary heavy-duty joint for the axle end, this new track bar allows the end user to properly center the axle under the vehicle following a lift kit installation. This new track bar joins other extensive JKS suspension products for the JL, JK, TJ, and more.
M.O.R.E. JL Skidplates
While the JL is pretty cool, it suffers from a vulnerable undercarriage. M.O.R.E. (mountainoffroad.com
) has been hard at work addressing the factory shortcomings with a variety of skidplates designed to protect vulnerable undercarriage components while maximizing ground clearance. The largest and most substantial is this engine and transmission skid, which offers full protection of the engine and transmission oil pans. Transfer case and evaporative canister skids are also available, along with bumpers and assorted other heavy-duty accessories.
Power Tank Digital Tire Inflator
Power Tank’s line of digital tire inflators is relatively new, but we spied a recently released version that needs to end up in our toolbox. Power Tank (powertank.com
) now offers a zero- to 60-psi tire inflator with a 6-foot braided stainless steel lead and a clip-on chuck at the end. This is perfect for putting some distance between yourself and a freshly mounted beadlock when seating the inner bead for the first time. Not only does this offer additional safety, but it also makes seating tires on rims much less stressful.
Chris Durham Motorsports Competition JK Hood
A follow-up to the Chris Durham Motorports (cdmracing.com
) popular Heat Reduction Hood for the JK, the company now offers a narrower 54-inch version for use on buggies and competition vehicles. This hand-laid fiberglass hood is lightweight and comes in paint-ready gelcoat. This latest hood joins a growing line of rockcrawler and competition hoods for a variety of Jeep models.
Warn JL Winch Mount
Not surprisingly, Warn Industries (warn.com
) didn’t waste time developing a winch mount for the new JL Wrangler. What some people might not realize, however, is that the new mount works with the JL’s optional steel front bumper. Unlike some of the other mounts on the market, this one also works with the company’s Zeon line of winches, in addition to the VR Series and others. The company plans to release many more JL-related products in the coming months, including bumpers.
Painless Trail Rocker for TJ, YJ & CJ
You couldn’t swing a dead cat at the Moab vendor show without hitting a new product for the JK or JL, so it was refreshing to see some companies still paying attention to older models. Painless Wiring (painlesswiring.com
) released new versions of its popular Trail Rocker system that are specific to TJs, YJs, and CJs. The Trail Rocker is a standalone wiring harness that allows you to control up to eight accessories without touching the vehicle’s factory wiring harness. Each new system includes brackets that make it easy to mount the fuse panel and switch panel for the Trail Rocker in each platform.
VHF Radio Kit
Rugged Radios (ruggedradios.com
) helps take the guesswork out of adding a VHF radio to your Jeep by including everything you need in a simple and complete package. The new Jeep Radio Kit includes a 25-watt radio to mount in the Jeep, coax cable and an antenna, an antenna mounting bracket for a JK, and a 5-watt handheld radio for your spotter. The radios are preprogrammed with most popular channels and can even be custom programmed by the company if you have a specific frequency you use.