SEMA Show 2004


Text and Photos by John Lee



Superwinch EPi9.0

Superwinch had several new products on display, but the one that really caught my eye is Superwinch's new synthetic winch line. The synthetic line is still in the developmental stages, but Superwinch says that the new line will be available early next year.

Synthetic Winch Line

Superwinch's line is dark gray in color and comes standard, at least for now, with a light chafe guard. The aluminum hawse fairlead will be another accessory that Superwinch says will be available next year.

Synthetic Winch Line

Here is the thimble and hook arrangement on the prototype synthetic winch line. The thimble is the heavy-duty type and actually encircles much of the winch line to protect it from abrasion. This is a nice touch, as is the heat-shrink tubing behind the thimble to protect to maintain the integrity of the splice. The hook is a yellow safety hook. These thoughtful touches combine to make the Superwinch synthetic winch line as good or better than the other winch lines currently on the market.

Superwinch Pulley block

Here is a black hawse fairlead. At this time, the hawse fairlead is still in development and Superwinch had several different colors on hand, including aluminum, black, and blue. The Superwinch 7750A Pulley Block has a new sticker but otherwise remains unchanged.

PMI Supermantle Chafe Guard

Also displayed was a chafe guard for the new synthetic winch line. This chafe guard appears to be made for Superwinch by Pigeon Mountain Industries, and appears identical to the PMI Supermantle Chafe Guard that we already sell.

Superwinch EPi9.0

Superwinch exhibited more than winch accessories. There are two new winches in the EP line. The EP line of winches now goes from 6,000 lbs. to 16,5000 lbs. capacities.

Superwinch EPi9.0, EP9.0, and EP6.0

Top to bottom are the EPi9.0, EP9.0, and EP6.0.

Superwinch EPi9.0

The EPi9.0 is currently Superwinch's best-selling EP winch. Frankly, I have never cared for winches with integrated solenoids as I much prefer to relocate the solenoid box elsewhere so that it does not show. However, the rest of the world seems to disagree.


The EP6.0 is the smallest of the EP winches. I'm not sure what function it serves, but it is available if one wants it. There is also an EPi6.0 available.

Superwinch EP12.5

New in the EP line is the EP12.5, which has a 12,500 lbs. capacity.

Superwinch EP16.5

Even larger is the new EP16.5, which has a 16,500 lbs. capacity.

Superwinch EP16.5

If you own a huge vehicle and want a huge winch, this is it.

Superwinch Husky 10

For me, the Husky remains the standard by which other winches are judged. The Husky 10 is still my favorite winch and the winch that I use on my own vehicle.

Superwinch Wireless Remote Superwinch Wireless Remote Superwinch Wireless Remote

Superwinch has also developed a wireless winch remote system that lets the user operate the winch with a separate remote control.

Superwinch Albright Solenoid

Also on display at the Superwinch booth was the waterproof Albright Heavy-Duty Solenoid, which is standard on the EP and Husky winches at this time. It turns out waterproof electronics was a big topic at the show, and several different companies had waterproof displays.


Bloomfield Manufacturing

Hi-Lift Jack

Bloomfield Manufacturing Co., Inc., maker of the famous Hi-Lift Jack, had a special green jack at the show. Bloomfield will produce exactly 1905 of these green jacks to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the company. Yes, Bloomfield Manufacturing has been in business that long.

Daystar Hi-Lift Jack Isolators

One of our favorite accessories for the Hi-Lift Jack is the Daystar Hi-Lift Jack Isolator. The isolator is molded from polyurethane and secures the handle on your Hi-Lift Jack when the jack is not in use. Using the Daystar isolator makes transporting your Hi-Lift Jack much quieter and easier.

Daystar Hi-Lift Jack Isolators

The isolator holds the Hi-Lift Jack's handle away from the main beam and completely eliminates rattles. The Daystar isolator is secure enough that wrapping the Hi-Lift Jack's handle and main beam with a velcro strap is necessary. The Daystar isolator is a very useful and popular accessory for the Hi-Lift Jack.

Hi-Lift Jack Isolator Hi-Lift Jack Isolator

Well, Bloomfield Manufacturing will soon come out with its its own isolator, and had two prototypes on display at the show to gauge interest and obtain some feedback on the design. The Bloomfield isolator, at least for the time being, differs in design concept from the Daystar isolator. The Bloomfield isolator is designed to slip over the Hi-Lift Jack's top clamp. Thus, removing the top clamp is not necessary to fit and remove the Bloomfield isolator and the user may leave the top clamp affixed to the jack. Many Hi-Lift Jack users have heretofore removed the top clamp entirely. These users will probably prefer the Daystar isolator. Those who prefer to use leave the top clamp in place will likely prefer the Bloomfield isolator. Furthermore, the isolator pictured above is merely a prototype and could change in design or concept by production time, so we will have to wait and see.

Hi-Lift Jack Lift-Mate

Also on display was the new Hi-Lift Jack Lift-Mate, which permits the user to lift a vehicle's wheel off the ground. Many vehicles are not fitted with heavy-duty bumpers or rock sliders and cannot be lifted using the Hi-Lift Jack. For these vehicles, Bloomfield designed the Lift-Mate.

Hi-Lift Jack Off-Road Base

Here is an illustration of how the Lift-Mate works. The unit is slipped over the Hi-Lift Jack's lifting tongue and the rubberized hooks are inserted into the wheels. Operating the jack lifts the vehicle's wheel.



ARB 4x4 Accessories

ARB USA has always had a nice booth at the SEMA Show and this year was no exception.

Chris Wood

ARB's West Coast Sales Manager Chris Wood is always on hand to greet existing and potential ARB stockists and describe to them the latest and greatest ARB products.

Old Man Emu Caster-Correcting Bushings

If you are wondering what Old Man Emu caster-correcting bushings look like, look at the photo above.

ARB Blue Transit Bag

In the ARB display was a new ARB Blue Transit Bag. This bag is very different from the ARB transit bags I am accustomed to seeing. Contrast this transit bag with the one below.

ARB Transit Bag

Here is the ARB Transit Bag I am accustomed to seeing. This unit is different from the Engel Transit Bag. The new ARB transit bag is a different design, with the top cover separate from the rest of the bag and the fridge's locking clasp exposed for easier manipulation.



Ramsey RE12000

Ramsey's booth had its RE12000 on display. This is a very nice unit and provides excellent service.

Ramsey Technora Winch Line

Also on display was Ramsey's synthetic winch line. This line is purportedly all Technora and comes standard with a light chafe guard and safety hook.

Ramsey Wireless Remote Control

Ramsey also had its wireless winch remote system on display. Note that the Ramsey system is considerably more compact than the Superwinch system.



Engel 45 Freezer Fridge

Engel displayed its sliding fridge tray. This slide locks in both the open and closed positions and makes using the Engel Freezer Fridge easier in certain applications. The slide is still a prototype and not currently available.

Engel Warmer

Engel also displayed its food warmer. Leave food in this warmer for a while and it will be piping hot and ready to eat. This unit is similar to Engel's IV warmer that is used by hospitals but operates at a much higher temperature.

Engel Thermometer

Engel also displayed its Digital Thermometer. This unit runs off a single AAA battery and measures in both Celsius and Fahrenheit. Affix the unit to your Engel Freezer Fridge and you will know the temperature of the contents therein.

Engel 35 Freezer Fridge

The Engel 35 Freezer Fridge is a popular unit and suited for low-height applications such as fitting under the cargo curtain on the Disco1 and Disco2, or a tonneau cover on a D90 soft-top. This Engel 35 has been fitted with the Engel Digital Thermometer.

Engel 16 and 22 Freezer Fridges

The Engel 16 and 22 Freezer Fridges models are designed for passenger cars or limited-space applications.

Engel Ultra-Cool Cooler

Engel also showed off its new Ultra-Cool iceboxes. Unlike the Engel Freezer-Fridges, the Ultra-Cool iceboxes are coolers and designed to work with standard ice cubs or dry ice. Do not, however, think that this is an ordinary cooler. The Ultra-Cool was designed to work in applications where a powered unit would not be practicable, such as on a sail boat.

Engel Ultra-Cool Cooler

The Ultra-Cool's walls are made from fiberglass and then coated with a marine-grade gelcoat that prevents the unit from staining or absorbing odors. The two-inch wide cavities in the walls are filled with expanding polyurethane foam. The unit is extremely strong and almost indestructible.

Engel Ultra-Cool Cooler Engel Ultra-Cool Cooler

The Ultra-Cool's lid features very robust hinges and locking clasps. All hinges, clasps, and handles are secured to galvanized steel plates inside the walls. Construction is very robust and the Ultra-Cool's quality is there in spades. If you need to cool food or drinks and don't have access to electrical power, this is the unit for you.


End of the Road

End of the Road Quick Fist

End of the Road showed its Quick Fist rubber mounting clamps.

End of the Road Quick Fist

The Quick Fist clamps come in both small and large sizes. The large size will hold a Power Tank or fire extinguisher. The small size Quick Fist can be used to hold items as large as a Hi-Lift Jack.


Advanced Air Systems

Advanced Air Systems Power Tank

Power Tank did not have a display at the SEMA Show, but there were Power Tanks on display at numerous different booths.

Advanced Air Systems Power Tank

Constant innovation is a hallmark of Power Tank and the latest Power Tanks like the one shown above feature several enhancements that do not exist on older models. The newest Power Tank SuperFlow Regulator is adjustable from 0 to 250 psi while the older models go to only 160 psi. Inflation times are now even faster. To accommodate the higher pressures, the hose is reinforced and features a working load limit of 300 psi and a bursting strength of 1000 psi. The Heavy-Duty Inflator on the end of the air hose makes inflating tires and gauging pressure a snap.



Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

I must admit that I am growing numb to the show vehicles at the SEMA Show. There are so many vehicles at the SEMA Show that one almost becomes lost in the sea of vehicles on display there. This LR3 was on display at the Ford booth and caught my eye though.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

Apparently, the 2006 Land Rover G4 Challenge will take place in Thailand. Time will tell if there will be any serious fourwheeling in the G4 challenge. The LR3 is undoubtedly a very capable vehicle, perhaps the most capable offroader that Land Rover has produced thus far. It would be nice if the G4 Challenge actually had some challenging fourwheeling.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

It appears that Land Rover will make a winch basket available for the LR3. This winch basket is similar in design and appearance to the Land Rover Genuine Parts winch baskets available for the Disco1 and Disco2. Somebody at WARN needs to send some of the new WARN synthetic winch lines to the G4 people. There are not less than eight lights on the front of the G4 LR3.

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Front Lamp Guards

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Front Lamp Guards cover the headlights. The lamp guards feature louvers.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

The louvered theme continues on the four roof lights. These lights appear to be made by WARN. I would prefer to see some Hella auxiliary lights on this vehicle.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

The snorkel on the LR3 is a mystery to me. This has to be one of the ugliest snorkels ever. The bottom of the snorkel reminds me of a jerrycan.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

Again, this is one ugly snorkel. The plastic snorkel just continues the plasticized look of the LR3, from the plastic bumpers to the plastic wheel arches to the plastic roof rack to the plastic lamp guards to the plastic sills to the plastic interior and so on.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

The tires are Goodyear MT-R's and I believe the wheels are 18" in diameter.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

Here's a side view of the LR3. Lots of plastic.

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Ladder

G4 Challenge stickers are plastered all over the vehicle.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

Dave Lucas from Slickrock Fabrication checks out the LR3's sill areas for rock slider ideas.

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Lamp Guards

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Lamp Guards cover the tail lights.

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Ladder

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Ladder is really nice and very fitting on the LR3.

Land Rover Genuine Parts LR3 G4 Challenge Rear Ladder

The rear of the LR3 seems to be the weakest in terms of styling. The rear ladder makes the LR3's rear much more interesting and palatable.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

The LR3's split rear door, however, is very functional and can be used as a seat. Also, the rear door is less susceptible to damage from overloading or hyperextending the swinging rear door's hinges.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

The interior of the G4 LR3 features a full cage to prevent cargo from falling into the passenger compartment.

Land Rover G4 Challenge LR3

"The ultimate global adventure continues". LOL.




The Hella booth is always of interest to me, so I always keep an eye out for this sign.


New in the Hella booth is a waterproof light. The light uses the same mounting base as the Hella 4000, but the reflector body is yellow and more squared in shape. This new light should be available sometime next year.

Hella Micro DE HID Driving Lamp

Hella also displayed its Micro DE HID Driving Lamp. This light is especially suitable for use on adventure motorcycles because of its small size.

Hella Micro DE HID Driving Lamp

The Micro DE Driving Lamp is very small in size and differs in design configuration from the halogen Micro DE Fog Lamp and also features more mounting configurations than the halogen DE Fogs. Strangely, the vent points upward on the HID version.

Hella Micro DE HID Driving Lamp

If you ride a motorcycle and want the ultimate auxiliary lights for it, take a closer look at the Micro DE Driving Lamp.


If you're into pimp, then Hella makes stuff for you as well.

Hella 4000

The Hella 4000 remains the standard by which other lights are judged. This is a superb auxiliary light.




Bilstein displayed its new Black Hawk racing shock. This shock features position-sensitive valving but is more compact than other designs.

Bilstein Bilstein

Bilstein also demonstrated the advantage of gas charging shocks by having a display with transparent shock that could be pressurized and depressurized, all while the the shock was mechanically compressed and decompressed. In the left photo, the shock is pressurized with gas. While the piston is cycling and oil is surging through the shock's valves, there is no cavitation/aeration of shock's oil. In the right photo, the oil is highly aerated by the loss of pressure inside the shock. In fact, the oil aerates on the first stroke of the piston. Equally remarkable is that the aeration disappears immediately when the shock is pressurized with air once again.


Optima Batteries

Optima Batteries

Optima Batteries are always interesting to me and I always stop at the Optima booth to check out the latest designs. I didn't see anything drastically new this year and Optima's booth seemed to highlight various displays rather than new models.

Optima Batteries

For example, Optima wanted to show how resistant to vibration an Optima battery is. This display very clearly shows just how robust an Optima battery is.

Optima Batteries

Optima Batteries are also waterproof. This display continues the waterproof theme at this year's SEMA Show.



SEMA Show 2001
SEMA Show 2002
SEMA Show 2003
SEMA Show 2005