After literally months of delay, I finally started the fabrication on my back bumper and canoe/kayak rack. To back up a little, last fall I built the front bumper, which was originally going to be integrated into the rack, but the design has changed about 6 times since then
To begin the back, I took a piece of 3/16" plate and had it sheared and broke to the dimensions I needed. The steel was free (it's good to have friends!) and the breaks cost me $20 at a local steel shop:
After marking center I cut down at a 30* angle, and found that Bud Lite and steel fab don't mix, so I had to weld a piece back on, lol
. The added back piece can be seen on the left end here:
To mount it, I'm going to cut and tap 2 square plates and weld them to the back of the frame, and mount the bumper using 8 bolts to match the front.
For the front of the rack, I'm just basically using the same design as a light bar. I'll bend a piece of 1" schedule 40 pipe to clear the roof by 2" and mount to the windshield brackets here:
I pulled the bracket to start building the mounts. It looks like its going to be a bit tricky to get it to flow with the body of the jeep.
For the rear of the rack, I found these tapped holes in the frame:
I'm going to build mounts to bolt on there, then bend pipe to come around the body and tie that into the rear bumper by bringing the bumper around to meet it. That will leave me a small, unobtrusive place to mount the upper part of the rack, which I'll leave off when not in use. As the project progresses, I'll update with pics! I was going to powder coat it all when finished, but I'm not sure ill ever be able to grind my screw-up on the bumper smooth enough to make it invisible, so I may do a little bondo work and bed-line it all. Still undecided on that. When finished, I should have less than 100 bux in the whole project!