Jonathan Eilen and his 2010 Peterbilt 389 tractor -- dubbed "Iron Affliction" -- along with his 2008 custom Mac trailer took first prize at the National Association of Show Trucks (NATS) annual competition held in conjunction with the 2011 Mid America Trucking Show.
Eilen's 2010 Peterbilt 389 is built on a 250-in. wheelbase is powered by a 485 hp Cummins ISX engine.
“Iron Affliction” took over a year for Eilen to customize and only has 120,000 miles on the odometer to date. The truck is dedicated to the memory of his late brother, Jake Eilen, who died in 2008 in a fatal single car accident.
Eilen's truck sports a one-of-a-kind 18-speed Eaton Fuller transmission connected to a shifter that looks more like a wizard's staff than a truck gear changer. "It only looks hard to shift; you get used to it very quickly," Eilen told our intrepid reporter.
The custom 2008 Mac trailer Jonathan Eilen pulls with "Iron Affliction" used to be owned and operated by his late brother Jake. "I changed the paint scheme a little to match my truck," Jonathan says.
Attention to detail helped Jonathan Eilen win first place at NAST's annual competition, which is sponsored by Truck-Lite. Eilen took home a $5,000 check and a special etched-glass trophy.
Forgoing the traditional red used on Cummins' engines, Eilen had his 485 hp unit painted coal black with orange trim to match his truck's colors.
The entire Eilen clan -- spouses included as well -- was on hand to congratulate Jonathan on his win. It's interesting to note that all the trucks competing in NAST's regional and national events must be "working" trucks -- out hauling freight on a weekly basis or, in Eilen's case, gravel and salt.