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The Original 3/8" Ruffstuff Diff Cover!Safety Thimble FairleadsEngo winches available at www.rockridge4wd.com! Free shipp

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Unread 01-21-2011, 08:13 PM   #1
PanthersFan
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Winch ON or IN my custom bumper

So, I've fabricated a bumper. I love the way it turned out. Mid-width, fully welded inside and out. The shackle mounts finally came in this week and will get bolted on tomorrow in place of the stock recovery hooks you see in the pictures. I'm now looking at winches.

The question is: Should I mount the winch plate on the top of the frame rails so the winch is at the top of the bumper? Or, should I mount the winch plate to the bottom of the frame rails and have more of the winch in the bumper? Pro's/Con's of each option?

Notes: I will cut out the top of the bumper around the exposed part of the winch. I picked up the winch plate at Harbor Freight last week.

bumper-tack-welds.jpg   bumper.jpg  
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Unread 01-21-2011, 11:19 PM   #2
MO2500
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I like the winch sunk in between the frame rails. A guy I wheeled with did this on his JK and IMO it looked great. Up to you though
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Unread 01-22-2011, 07:14 AM   #3
Ironworker709
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Inside the bumper looks good,but being inside it is hard to have access to it for any type of maintenance and cleaning,plus it will collect alot more mud and dirt being inside a pocket. On the plus side it doesn't interfere with any air flow to the radiator.

If you do decide to put inside the frame rails,drill a few bigger holes in the winch plate for good water/mud drainage and weld the same size plate washer or nut over the hole underneath for support where you weakened the plate with a bigger hole.
This way when you hose it down for cleaning it will be a little easier to rinse out clean.
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Unread 01-23-2011, 02:13 AM   #4
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definitely in..

approach angles are nice...
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Unread 01-23-2011, 06:40 AM   #5
Netpackrat
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I can't help but think the time to ask this question was before you built the bumper... Anyway, I wouldn't bother trying to put the winch "inside" the bumper, but sinking it down partway is probably a good idea. That's how the MORE bumper on my TJ is built, and it still makes a big difference in lowering the winch out of the air path to the radiator, provides increased protection for the winch (I have a guard around the top welded on in front as well), and doesn't allow crap to build up that is hard to clean out. It will still collect crap, but at least it is easy to hose out. I think it looks better than a winch sitting on top of the bumper also.
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Unread 01-23-2011, 01:32 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Netpackrat View Post
I can't help but think the time to ask this question was before you built the bumper... Anyway, I wouldn't bother trying to put the winch "inside" the bumper, but sinking it down partway is probably a good idea. That's how the MORE bumper on my TJ is built, and it still makes a big difference in lowering the winch out of the air path to the radiator, provides increased protection for the winch (I have a guard around the top welded on in front as well), and doesn't allow crap to build up that is hard to clean out. It will still collect crap, but at least it is easy to hose out. I think it looks better than a winch sitting on top of the bumper also.
I constructed the bumper with the ability to sink a winch inside. No brackets or obstructions to worry about there. I've always planned on mounting the winch plate to the frame, not the bumper, so all I have to do to the bumper is cut the top out for the winch body and a slot in the front for the fairlead.

I got the shackle mounts installed today. While I had the bumper off, I went ahead and planned how I need to modify the HF winch plate to mount it to the bottom of the frame rails. I'll try to write that up as I do it of anyone is interested.
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Unread 01-23-2011, 06:25 PM   #7
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I really like the clean look of the winch in the bumper. Then I think about the added difficulty of maintaining the winch. A winch doesn't really need much of anything except cleaned off but I want it to be easy to spool the line neatly and smooth for added cable life. I opted for the open mount.
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Unread 01-23-2011, 09:40 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Igiveup View Post
but I want it to be easy to spool the line neatly and smooth for added cable life. I opted for the open mount.
That's certainly something to take into consideration. If you mount the winch too closed-in you won't easily know if your cable is bunching up or see what your doing when re-spooling.

Maybe make a quick access plate above the winch?
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Unread 01-24-2011, 12:22 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by MO2500 View Post
That's certainly something to take into consideration. If you mount the winch too closed-in you won't easily know if your cable is bunching up or see what your doing when re-spooling.

Maybe make a quick access plate above the winch?
I'm thinking now that the winch will be about 1/3 exposed if I mount the winch plate to the bottom of the frame rails. Keeping the winch clear of debris is a concern for me. I may weld in some deflectors to keep the spray/road grime off of the tires from slinging onto the winch.
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Unread 01-24-2011, 02:23 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by TaterTott View Post
definitely in..

approach angles are nice...
Huh?

Nice bumper by the way. Looks simple and clean. I like it. I cant say Im a fan of the factory hooks though (I know you removed them). Id leave it up on top. Easier to get to and clean and Im not aware of any issues where winched adversly effect engine temp on the JKs.
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Unread 01-25-2011, 08:59 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by fropleyquark View Post
Huh?

Nice bumper by the way. Looks simple and clean. I like it. I cant say Im a fan of the factory hooks though (I know you removed them). Id leave it up on top. Easier to get to and clean and Im not aware of any issues where winched adversly effect engine temp on the JKs.
Yep. The hooks are off. I only used them to hold the bumper on while I waited for the shackle mounts. Here's what it looks like with shackle mounts:
bumper-front.jpg   bumper-closeup.jpg  
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Unread 01-31-2011, 12:19 PM   #12
Fropleyqk
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That looks real good dude. I love the simplicity of it. Very clean and kind of bold. Good work.
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Unread 01-31-2011, 02:29 PM   #13
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Thanks. My goal was to get the look of a stubby, but have the bumper be wide enough to keep brush or small trees out past the sheet metal to the fenders/tires.

Now, it's on to the rear bumper...
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Unread 03-29-2012, 01:34 PM   #14
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im sure im a little late seeing this but i just got my own jk and i am planning on making my own bumpers. was it hard to make that bumper?
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Unread 03-29-2012, 01:48 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by cliffordBRJ
im sure im a little late seeing this but i just got my own jk and i am planning on making my own bumpers. was it hard to make that bumper?
3/16" x 5" steel plate. I made the top and front pieces first, then just kind of filled in the rest as I went.

Here it is as I was tacking it up. Also, I haven't added the winch yet, but Isis add the hoop and lights.
image-809824611.jpg   image-2698531906.jpg  
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THE Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.
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