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July 2002 4x4 Truck Parts And Accessories - What's New

Posted in Product Reviews on July 1, 2002
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Contributors: Jon Thompson

Wizard Wheels
One important key to any good-looking 4x4 has to be its wheels. American Racing's new polished billet Longboard wheel will give any new model Ford, Dodge, Chevy, or GMC truck or SUV added appeal, especially if you're thinking of moving up to 17-inch wheels. The Longboard is available in 17x8 and 17x10. Contact: American Racing, Dept. FW, 1275 Davis Rd., Suite 300, Elgin, IL 60123, 888/AR-WHEEL, www.americanracing.com.

Plug in an Overdrive
Can you afford to go without an overdrive? If not, and if you're sick to death of the Peugeot transmission in your '86-'89 Wrangler, Advance Adapters has created a kit to mate the NV3550 transmission to your Jeep. The NV3550 -which also can be swapped into early Broncos using a similar Advance Adapters kit-is a medium-duty, five-speed transmission with a torque rating of 300 lb-ft, a 27-percent overdrive, and a reasonable price tag. Contact: Advance Adapters, Dept. FW, 4320 Aerotech Center Way, Paso Robles, CA 93346805/238-7000, www.advanceadapters.com.

TJ Suspension System
Full-Traction Suspension recently announced the release of its 4-inch Jeep TJ Suspension System. Said to deliver an RTI of 1160, this kit includes everything necessary for an easy bolt-on installation. Front antiroll-bar quick-disconnects and a heavy-duty adjustable front track bar are standard equipment. The kit is said to allow use of up to 33x12.50 tires without fender modifications. Works in conjunction with factory rear driveshaft without modification. All parts are powdercoated for extra corrosion resistance. Contact: Full-Traction Suspension, Dept. FW, 6951 McDivitt Dr., Bakersfield, CA 93313, 661/398-9585, www.full-traction.com.

Bust That Brush
Now look, we all know that as advocates of the Tread Lightly! philosophy, we don't use the bumpers on our vehicles to bull our way through undergrowth, don't we? Nevertheless, the Brush Buster aluminum bumper for Jeeps is an attractive piece that you may wish to consider. The front bumper weighs 35 pounds and uses the stock mounting holes. It's positioned so that it does not interfere with frame-mounted winches. Available in high-gloss black, textured black, or silver metallic. A matching rear bumper also is available. Contact: Truck Master Designs, Dept. FW, 29189 Cir. 36, Wakarusa, IN 46573, 219/862-4831, www.truckmasterdesigns.com.

Fixing the Weak Link
If you've 'wheeled a Toyota 4x4, then you know that the Birfield joint, which connects the front inner axleshaft to the stub axle, is the weak link in the Toyota drivetrain. This weak link now can be made stronger, according to Bob Long, of Long Enterprises, which makes the Toyota Super Axle. Using at least two special processes, one of which involves actually softening the joint's metal, and welding a small ring on the end of the Birfield bell, Long says, "We finally have an axle that will stand any test we throw at it." If you'd like to strengthen your Toyota's frontend, give Long Enterprises a call. Contact: Long Enterprises, Dept. FW, 20719 111th Ave. East, Graham, WA 98338, 253/847-8254, www.toyotasuperaxles.com.

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