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November 2011 New Products

Posted in Product Reviews on November 1, 2011
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Frame Fix Found
The ’07-and-up JK Wrangler makes fitting 35s under a Jeep easier than ever and many guys are taking it the next level with 37s and 40s. The problem then becomes the factory track bar mount at the frame and the sector shaft in the steering box. Bigger tires and better steering can shear them off with prolonged heavy use. JKS has developed a system of interlocking components to cure both problems in one shot. It consists of a heavy-duty bracket which installs over the factory track bar bracket, a tubular strut that ties into the passenger-side framerail, and a support bearing for the sector shaft. The kit fits JKs with 2 inches of lift or more. Information: JKS Manufacturing, 308/762-6949,

Cover Your Rear
Most aftermarket covers are a compromise. Some have drain plugs, some don’t. Some are built to stand the entire Jeep on the cover but they weigh a lot. These new cast-aluminum covers from Max-Bilt are lightweight but will still handle an impact better than the factory covers. They feature a raised fill plug for high-pinion axles and axles running steep pinion angles. The drain plug is magnetic to catch errant metal chunks. The differential covers are available for Dana 30, 35, 44, 60, AMC Model 20, and Ford 8.8 axles. Information: Max-Bilt, 715/210-0256,

Bolt-On Hydro
If you have a manual tubing bender you know it is a love-hate relationship: Love bending tube, but hate the pain in the butt it is to do so. Swag Off Road has come up with a kit that is completely bolt-on and can convert your manual bender to a hydraulic bender capable of bending even 2-inch, 0.250-wall tubing with ease. Just add an 8-ton hydraulic jack. The kit works with JD Squared Model 3 and JD-32; Pro Tools 105 and 105HD; JMR Manufacturing Sportsman benders. Information: Swag Off Road, 541/915-2775,

Beefy Balancing Act
When adding protection to the Jeep it is always a balancing act. Too strong means too heavy and we’ve proven how that is bad. And if the protective tubes extend too far off the Jeep, they can hang up on obstacles and get you stuck. These rock sliders fit the ’07-and-up Wrangler and feature 2-inch, 0.134-wall tubing with just the right angle on the rocker panel. The tubing angles up from the rocker for ground clearance but is still far enough off the body to provide a toehold to help climb up on. The matte black powdercoating provides an unobtrusive finish and they feature a lifetime guarantee. Information: ACE Engineering and Fab, 586/925-1893,

Live Loud
Like anything else, our beloved Jeeps leave some room for improvement. Among those categories is the factory stereo system. Kicker is well known for subwoofers but it isn’t well known that the company makes all kinds of speakers. Well, someone at Chrysler knew because Kicker has been tapped to provide stereo upgrades to your ’11-and-up Jeep and ’09-and-up Ram vehicles through your local Jeep and Ram dealers. Available components include upgraded high range speakers, a subwoofer, and an amp. Expect to see plug-and-play functionality across the board as well so you don’t have to mess with any strippers or crimpers. Information: Stillwater Designs, 800/256-0808,

Better Doors
If you don’t like taking your factory doors out on the trail, you aren’t alone. We all like that open-air feeling but we hate having to leave our doors back at camp or in the back of the truck. Enter T&T Customs with 3⁄16-inch-thick aluminum trail doors. Because they are aluminum they are lightweight but the thickness of the doors means they are stout. It covers even less door-hole than the factory steel half doors or aftermarket soft doors, but packs tons of features. Padded armrests, cup holders, and Bestop latches work with your factory door latches. The doors ship with a durable powdercoat finish and are available for ’81-’86 CJ-7, YJs, TJs, and LJs. Information: T&T Customs, 307/775-9565,

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