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Topic Review (Newest First)
11-05-2013 07:10 AM
TipperD photo to follow

I had the brackets milled from solid stock and welded to the bumper, added a welded tab to bumper to catch the rear bolt so bumper has 3 bolts to frame, incorporated a Smitty bilt raised winch plate at the same time. tabs fit Blue Ox tow hitch.
11-05-2013 07:07 AM
Mello Mike
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepCats View Post
I have towed my 99TJ with the stock bumper behind an 02 GC and an 06Commander. I bought a tow bar at Tractor Supply, bolted the provided brackets directly on the bumper right up against where it attaches to the frame. I have towed it up to 500 miles at a time,one way. Accept the noise of the shift in force when breaking, It is like it is not there. I've never had any problems. I use a Uhaul magnetic light kit.

Photo to follow.
Same here using the OEM bumper. Here's a detailed write-up on my set-up and it tows like a dream.

Mello Mike's Truck Camper Adventures: TJ Jeep Wrangler Flat Tow System
11-04-2013 08:43 PM
JeepCats This is of course just the bracket attached to the bumper. The rest is at home.
11-04-2013 07:32 PM
JeepCats I have towed my 99TJ with the stock bumper behind an 02 GC and an 06Commander. I bought a tow bar at Tractor Supply, bolted the provided brackets directly on the bumper right up against where it attaches to the frame. I have towed it up to 500 miles at a time,one way. Accept the noise of the shift in force when breaking, It is like it is not there. I've never had any problems. I use a Uhaul magnetic light kit.

Photo to follow.
10-29-2013 10:48 PM
kawzak I agree with using 1/4"thick for rear bumper. I used 3/16 on my front. tuff enough because the tow bar mounts are right at the frame horns. no plans for a winch-so 3/16' was what I chose. Nice looking rear swing bumper you built.
10-29-2013 12:29 PM
All Terrain JK The bumpers are both 2x4x1/4". I went with 1/4" wall because I planned on towing and recovery plus the weight of the 35" spare. Some people will criticize for the added weight difference from 3/16 but the extra 5lbs is worth the peace of mind to me. The swing-out frame is 2x2x3/16". If you are interested the is a write-up in my build thread towards the end. Just click on the link in my sig.
10-29-2013 10:36 AM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by All Terrain TJ View Post
I also built a swing-out for the rear (gratuitous pic time).
Nice..! I would love to built something like that, but I'm just learning to weld so I think I'll wait til I feel a little more confident and the welds look a little better. What size tube did you use?
10-29-2013 06:52 AM
All Terrain JK Thanks for the compliment. I also built a swing-out for the rear (gratuitous pic time).

Attachment 471794



Attachment 471818

On the front I added two exta mounting points to the bottom. They attach to the crossmember.

Attachment 471826



Attachment 471834

So it has 8 1/2" mounting bolts. Probably overkill but I always over build things. My rear bumper has 10 mount points, 6 of which are directly into the frame. Lol
10-28-2013 10:56 PM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by All Terrain TJ View Post
You held out on me Water Dog! You showed me how to hook up the led but didn't divulge the brake light circuit. Lol
I forgot to unlock the steering leaving the campgrounds,after two turns I figured it out real quick.
I recently built a new front bumper and integrated my towbar mounts into it.

Before moving up to 35s I was 2" higher at the Jeep so I put the new mounts in the bottom of the bumper to level it out.
Actually, I'm the only one I know of to wire it that way. Most use diodes or separate bulbs...all workable. We were on a trip in AZ about a year and a half ago, and I forgot to unlock the steering. Drove probably 25 miles like that and couldn't figure out why the steering wheel in the motorhome wasn't centered.. Finally realized it when I made a turn into a gas station and could see the left front tire of the Jeep in my side mirror skidding around the corner. I'm surprised I didn't break something. I like your bumper work...looks great.
10-28-2013 10:53 PM
Sinister6
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowreyfarris View Post
I am currently towing my 99 Wrangler behind my motor home with an adjustable arm towbar and Roadmaster brackets mounted on top of the factory bumper. The angle of the towbar is at the limit and raising my RV hitch is not an option. Looking at both Roadmaster and Blue OX base plates that go under the bumper it is looking like it will be around $400, and may cause some clearance issues if I am offroading. My thinking is that I would be better off putting the $400 towards a metalcloak bumper, I am just a little concerned about using bolt on D-ring shackles as an attachment for the towbar.

Any thoughts or comments are appreciated.



http://a248.e.akamai.net/origin-cdn....jpg?1342446781

Couldn't you use a Drop receiver and turn it upside down and mount the ball on what would be the bottom of the the receiver? So a 4" drop reciever turned upside down would raise your towbar almost 6" if you include the height of the ball?
My buddy does tow his CJ7 with bolt on bracket to the Warn bumper uses Class 8 bolts...never had an issue!
10-28-2013 10:41 PM
All Terrain JK You held out on me Water Dog! You showed me how to hook up the led but didn't divulge the brake light circuit. Lol
I love the Ready Brute Elite also. I run my 35" tires at their normal road preasure which is 26psi. The only time I have noticed it back there was this past weekend. I forgot to unlock the steering leaving the campgrounds,after two turns I figured it out real quick.
I recently built a new front bumper and integrated my towbar mounts into it.

Attachment 471146



Attachment 471154



Attachment 471170

Before moving up to 35s I was 2" higher at the Jeep so I put the new mounts in the bottom of the bumper to level it out.
10-28-2013 10:37 PM
kawzak The OEM bumper is 1/8" thick steel, maybe less. I was not comfortable with that. I had a 3/16" thick steel bumper 3" x 4" x 3" x 48" long- bent at a fab shop in a tight "C". I then installed Curt brand tow bar mounts on it. Drilled the holes for OEM mounting and bolted it back onto the frame horns with grade 8 bolts. I even welded a reciever tube in the middle/below. Bumper cost $40.00, reviever tube (wal-mart) $12.00, paint $ 8.00. total $ 60.00 and it may be heavier than what you can buy off the shelf. I also re-located my driving lights inward a little-looks better to me. nice heavy duty bumper-cheap.
10-28-2013 09:24 PM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowreyfarris View Post

I am using the Ready Brute Elite with built in brake. It was a simple 1 hour install to attach the cable to my brake pedal. I am running two bulbs for braking, one activates with the Jeep brake, and one from my RV brake. This allows me to run a hot line from the jeep side to a LED in my RV dash. That way I know when the Jeep brakes are being activated, and I will know if they lock up.
I also use the Ready Brute Elite...great system. When I installed mine a few years back, I bought a 3 pole toggle switch that I installed in the Jeeps rear signal and tail lights, so a flip of the switch changes the input for the OEM tail lights from the Jeep to the motorhome. I wired my monitor light using motorhome power, then installed a relay in the Jeep to trigger it when the Jeeps brakes are applied. That was the only real issue I had with the Ready Brute...I didn't like that the monitor light was originally triggered by the surge instead of the brake pedal. It came in handy last year when the surge cable came apart, and not seeing the monitor light come on any longer let me know something was wrong.
10-28-2013 08:39 PM
lowreyfarris I ended up going with the Best Top High Rock front bumper, mainly because of the 2 sets of 1" D-ring shackles drilled through a 1" think tab that is welded on both sides of the bumper. It seemed like it would be the most durable. I got some of the warrior products tow bar D ring adapters to mount the tow bar on the upper set of shackles, and my safety chains attach to the lower. With my 31" tires it is almost level. My thinking at purchase was if I did a 3 inch lift and got some bigger tires, I could just use the lower shackle mounts for the tow bar and still be level.

I am using the Ready Brute Elite with built in brake. It was a simple 1 hour install to attach the cable to my brake pedal. I am running two bulbs for braking, one activates with the Jeep brake, and one from my RV brake. This allows me to run a hot line from the jeep side to a LED in my RV dash. That way I know when the Jeep brakes are being activated, and I will know if they lock up. I have it set so that they only activate when I am breaking pretty hard. The LED makes adjustment super easy.

For the most part I don't even know it is back there. I can hook up in less than 5 minutes by myself. The tow bar folds up on the RV side. Super happy with this set up!!
10-28-2013 08:16 PM
DBoat
Quote:
Originally Posted by Water Dog View Post
I think your sway issue has more to do with the size and wheelbase of your tow vehicle coupled with the short wb of the wrangler. I think you will find that towing it with the pick up is much better. We tow ours with our motor home and if we couldn't see it, wouldn't even know it was there. If you have the tow bar close to level and good alignment on the Jeep, it will tow great.
I checked and the wheelbase of the truck is about 6" longer than the Explorer. They both have a 5000 lb towing capacity
Dana
10-28-2013 06:46 PM
MeauxBean Just towed my 06 Tj from south Louisiana to Colorado and back. Used a tow bar and tow bar adapters to hook to the D rings attachments on the aftermarket bumper. Behind my 08 F-250 diesel. I kept scaring myself, "damn that guy is following me close" oh wait that's my Jeep. LOL.
All I did was put the transfer case in neutral, checked it by putting it in gear and released the clutch. Unlocked the steering wheel and put it in 5th gear and go. I bought a set of magnetized lights from Harbor Freight.
10-28-2013 06:12 PM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by DBoat View Post
Guys, thanks for the quick feedback.. I remember a long time ago being told to tie down the steering wheel.. so I am going to hook it all back up again and not use the bungy cord and see how it handles.. also, will air up to 35 lbs in the tires.. was running 30-32 lbs..
Dana
I really don't think extra air is going to make much difference either way, we run ours (33's) at the same air we drive it on (28 psi)
10-28-2013 06:03 PM
DBoat Guys, thanks for the quick feedback.. I remember a long time ago being told to tie down the steering wheel.. so I am going to hook it all back up again and not use the bungy cord and see how it handles.. also, will air up to 35 lbs in the tires.. was running 30-32 lbs..
Dana
10-28-2013 05:26 PM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by DBoat View Post
I could tow between 60-65 at best. If I went faster, the incidence of getting some side to side movement in the Jeep increased.

I plan on towing the Jeep, an '05 LJ, to Moab from Dallas next year but am thinking of using the pickup truck, reg cab F150, as it might tow better than the Explorer.
Dana
I think your sway issue has more to do with the size and wheelbase of your tow vehicle coupled with the short wb of the wrangler. I think you will find that towing it with the pick up is much better. We tow ours with our motor home and if we couldn't see it, wouldn't even know it was there.

If you have the tow bar close to level and good alignment on the Jeep, it will tow great.
10-28-2013 05:16 PM
WEBEGPN I use Warn front bumber on 06 TJLJ and Currie tow bar works great, i did change out
safety chain to much larger and stronger 3/8 grade 8 chain.
the post DBoat made about bungi on steering wheel is not a good idea the steering wheel needs to turn when the tow vehicle turns............... if your having side to side sway problems check alignment and keep the air on your tow vehicle up there, i run 35lbs when flat towing,
10-28-2013 03:43 PM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by All Terrain TJ View Post
You shouldn't need anything to keep the steering straight.
X2...The bungee cord is pointless.
10-28-2013 03:11 PM
All Terrain JK You shouldn't need anything to keep the steering straight. If your front end alignment is good the Jeep should track straight behind the tow vehicle. I tow mine at 65 mph but occasionally get up to 70 with no problems at all.
10-28-2013 02:25 PM
DBoat Ok, finally flat towed my Jeep this last weekend for the first time. Went about 300 miles each way. Tow vehicle is a 2011 Ford Explorer with the stock 3.5L V6. Tow capacity is 5000 lbs. The tow bar is almost horizonal when towing. I use an adj height hitch. I also use a bungee cord to keep the sterring wheel straight.
I could tow between 60-65 at best. If I went faster, the incidence of getting some side to side movement in the Jeep increased. I will say that because the hitch is a two piece affair, one piece to go into the receiver and another to go up and down to change the height, makes the entire unit a bit looser than a one piece. I am wondering if I can tighten this up a bit to minimimize the side to side issue. Also, is a tight bungee good enough for the steering wheel or is there another/better solution?
I plan on towing the Jeep, an '05 LJ, to Moab from Dallas next year but am thinking of using the pickup truck, reg cab F150, as it might tow better than the Explorer. Not a lot of zoom in the suv.
Thoughts anyone?
Dana
07-02-2013 10:35 PM
DBoat I have a metalcloak aluminum bumper and the brackets in post #6. I havent towed mine yet but will be doing so soon. However, everything is looking good so far.
07-02-2013 09:43 PM
All Terrain JK
Quote:
Originally Posted by Water Dog View Post
I flat tow mine with Blue Ox brackets bolted to my ARB bumper. I used to have a Blue Ox base plate and stock bumper and it definitely got in the way wheeling. Here's some pics.
I use the exact same setup as Water Dog, in fact bought on his recommendations, and it's the cat's a$$. Got the Blue Ox universal mounts bolted to my homemade bumper.
07-02-2013 03:29 AM
steveo8x8 I have the smittybilt tow bar that hooks up to my d rings. Only cost like $130 and canes with chained and everything. Towed 6 hours there and back to mammoth smooth as ever. Didn't even know it was behind us.
07-02-2013 02:16 AM
Zdrisko
Quote:
Originally Posted by Water Dog View Post
I flat tow mine with Blue Ox brackets bolted to my ARB bumper. I used to have a Blue Ox base plate and stock bumper and it definitely got in the way wheeling. Here's some pics.
My '02 came with these brackets (from po) on the stock bumper. I'm assuming adding some D rings to these, they should hold up pretty well..? I don't have an rv but thought these could be used for recovery purposes until I get an aftermarket bumper. Don't mean to thread jack!
07-02-2013 01:14 AM
Water Dog
Quote:
Originally Posted by lowreyfarris View Post
Water Dog
Do you think the the D-ring mounting holes would be strong enough to use one of these?

I didn't use them on mine because the ARB D-Ring mounts aren't that wide and I wasn't sure how the extra slop would work. Some bumpers have nice wide D-Ring mounts, and they would probably work great.
07-02-2013 12:25 AM
lowreyfarris Water Dog
Do you think the the D-ring mounting holes would be strong enough to use one of these?
07-01-2013 10:50 PM
Water Dog I flat tow mine with Blue Ox brackets bolted to my ARB bumper. I used to have a Blue Ox base plate and stock bumper and it definitely got in the way wheeling. Here's some pics.
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