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-   -   JK Winch Bumper Build Write up (http://www.wranglerforum.com/f118/jk-winch-bumper-build-write-up-254041.html)

NWHoneybadger 07-06-2013 06:54 PM

JK Winch Bumper Build Write up
 
31 Attachment(s)
Ok everyone, I just finished my winch bumper for my 2012 JK Unlimited, and thought I would share my experience with all of you guys and gals. A little background, I weld and fabricate as a hobby a have a garage full of all the basic tools for such a job. However my job requires fabrication and fitting skills with sheetmetal. I did cheat a little and had a local steel shop do some of the basic bending for me using their press brake in order to speed things along. So here is the finished product:

Attachment 269605

Just I case you have a 2012 or later, you will need to address the vacuum pump and get it relocated to make room for the winch between the frame rails. I will go more into this at the end.

Attachment 269606

Here is what i started with, everything is 3/16 mild steel. I figure the overall sizes I would need for a winch mount, and bumper and had them cut and bent

Attachment 269607

First thing I did is remove the stock bumper, and mock up cardboard bumper (not pictured) with the winch to see is everything would fit, and to figure out the basic design I wanted. I did all of this long before I even thought about buying steel BTW.

Attachment 269608

Starting with the winch plate, I cut down the areas between the rails and mocked up. From this point, I just started cutting and welding without too much direction. I had this planned in my head for about 3 months, and when I went to build it, everything changed anyways.

Attachment 269609

I carefully figured out how much room I needed for the winch and made sure I could center it. I measured and drilled pilot holes for the frame bolts, WORD OF CAUTION, the bolt pattern on the end of the frame is not square, I think the top hole are spaced a 1/4" further apart than the bottom ones. Take your time on this step!

Attachment 269614

I added triangle gussets for the winch plate, and welded away. Notice the holes I left open for mud and water to drain out if I'm on a downhill.

Attachment 269616

Cut out and drilled shackle mounts out of some rusty 1x2 steel

Attachment 269617



Attachment 269618

I cut 1x2 holes centered between the bolt holes for frame mounting. I welded the shackle mounts flush with the back of the plate and ground off extra welds. Note I did not weld on the front side yet.

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Attachment 269620

I decided to add an extra 3/16 plate over the frame mounting areas for a little more beefiness, and welded up solid

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Attachment 269622

I used wheel studs which I got from les shwab tires. Do your homework on these, there are a lot of different sizes. I got ones with the correct threads and length, but the nurled press in shoulder was an odd metric size and I did not have the correct drill size. I ended up drilling with a 9/16 bit and they did not press as tight as I would have liked, so I welded them in place.

Attachment 269623

Here's what it looks like mocked up so far

Attachment 269624

Now on to the bumper itself, first carefully measured and cut holes for the shackle mounts and installed

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Looks horrible right, it needs a little something

So I chopped up the ends a welded back in place at a better looking angle.

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Now lets make room for the winch

Attachment 269629

And mock up again. I've installed this bumper about 10 times at this point

Attachment 269630

Removed and started cutting the hole for the cable fair lead. Make sure you make the hole big enough that the cable will not ever rub on the steel. I also marked and drilled mounting holes for the winch in the bottom plate

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Attachment 269635

Determined to reuse the factory fogs, I centered and drilled holes. This was not fun, I managed to burn up a new hole saw in 1 shot, so drill SLOW.

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Attachment 269637

I ground and sanded all welds and such, and also welded the back where I cut the bumper ends

Attachment 269638

Back to the lights, ugghhh. My perfect mounting solution for these was a failure, so nearing the project end I coughed up this idea like my dog coughed up dinner on the bed.

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Some machine screws hold the lights in place.

Now for the fun part, the mating of the bumper :)

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Attachment 269643

I welded them together with a 1/2" gap between the bumper the face of the with mount. I welded continuous across the top on the inside and around the shackle mounts. You'll notice that I cut out a hole to fit completely over the fair lead so it is recessed in a little.

Attachment 269644

And mocked up again. I drove it around a little at this point cause I couldn't wait.

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I sanded, cleaned, and covered with duplicolor bed armor in a can(2)

Attachment 269665

I installed for the last time and wired up the winch. I had to re route and extend the wiring for the fog lights. Make sure to use waterproof wire connectors, it is a jeep after all and mine is prone to partial drownings.

Here it is lit up like Christmas!!

Attachment 269666

Now about that vacuum pump, I believe this is for the braking system and is no reason it can't be relocated to the engine bay where it belongs. Now I kind of copied OR FABS bracket because it was simple. I your considering working around this, don't. It's simple to relocate, and with a little macguyver it won't cost you anything. Besides, it will almost positively be in your way when you go to put a wrench on the bumper mounting hardware. As a matter of fact, cut the whole mount off

Attachment 269677

A little paint to prevent rust, and it like it was never there

Attachment 269678

Do a google search for how to re route the wiring and hoses, it's not hard.

Here's the mount I came up with, ugly but it works

Attachment 269679

Painted, re routed hoses, extended wires, and installed. Done.

Attachment 269681

That's it folks.
I realize its not very original, but its functional, it's strong, and its mine.
I weighed it and the bumper comes in at 71lbs, and the winch and fair lead are 74lbs. A total of 145lbs did drop the front stock suspension exactly 1". For this I have a TF 2.5" lift/leveling kit on its way. I will post before and after pics with the lift.
What cha guys think?

NWHoneybadger 07-07-2013 07:36 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Made and installed a flip up licence plate holder today. The plastic clips are mag light D cell flashlight holders for $5.99. Otherwise this cost me nothing!

Attachment 270122



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WhiskeyMike 07-08-2013 09:29 AM

Super nice build up. Great lines and workmanship!

NWHoneybadger 07-08-2013 06:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WhiskeyMike (Post 3938063)
Super nice build up. Great lines and workmanship!

Thankyou

Sixpack 07-12-2013 10:24 AM

Great job, I've been thinking about building one as well, I like the idea for mounting the fog lights, I haven't had the factory bumper off yet but is there anything inside it that you could use to mount the light in ?

NWHoneybadger 07-12-2013 10:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sixpack (Post 3954309)
Great job, I've been thinking about building one as well, I like the idea for mounting the fog lights, I haven't had the factory bumper off yet but is there anything inside it that you could use to mount the light in ?

Nope, the plastic tabs on the lights screw directly to the molded area on the back of the bumper. The stock bumper is one or two giant pieces of molded plastic. It would probably be easier to use after market lights, but if your like me, you probably want them to work on the factory switch.

NWHoneybadger 07-19-2013 08:54 PM

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MoonyJohn 08-05-2013 07:59 PM

Looks nice!

XSapper 08-05-2013 09:54 PM

Good job! Looks real nice.

FZY1 03-29-2014 09:23 PM

What grade, size, of hardware did you use?

NWHoneybadger 03-29-2014 10:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FZY1 (Post 9456778)
What grade, size, of hardware did you use?

hardware for which part? Bumper mounting?

FZY1 03-29-2014 10:09 PM

Yes.

I have grade 8 but not sure if it will fit.

NWHoneybadger 03-29-2014 10:17 PM

Definantly want to use grade 8 hardware, can't remember the size but I ended up using wheel studs and press fit the into the bumper. I re used the nuts that held on the factory bumper.

tanner_carter 06-01-2014 06:34 PM

Do you remember what the cost was for you to make the bumper, excluding the winch of course? Looks great BTW

SuperTJ 06-01-2014 06:43 PM

Nice work!

Stretchmobile 06-01-2014 06:55 PM

Looks great, nice work. I was going to make my own bumper, like you, I have all the tools including a lathe and mill. It was the amount of time fitting everything and fabricating it all. It's my wife's Jeep and she needs it all the time. It's hard to find a length of down time for it. I figured it would take me several days and we couldn't work it out. Then I found a new Rampage bumper for less than 1/2 price and bought it instead. Be proud of it, you made it.

NWHoneybadger 06-05-2014 09:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tanner_carter (Post 11033153)
Do you remember what the cost was for you to make the bumper, excluding the winch of course? Looks great BTW

I don't remember the exact cost, but it peaked a little over $200. A lot of the cost was having the main piece bent on a press brake into the initial shape. The truth is that you buy a winch bumper for around the same cost if your so inclined, but it won't be nearly the Prius crushing bumper that this one is!

NWHoneybadger 06-05-2014 09:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stretchmobile (Post 11033697)
Looks great, nice work. I was going to make my own bumper, like you, I have all the tools including a lathe and mill. It was the amount of time fitting everything and fabricating it all. It's my wife's Jeep and she needs it all the time. It's hard to find a length of down time for it. I figured it would take me several days and we couldn't work it out. Then I found a new Rampage bumper for less than 1/2 price and bought it instead. Be proud of it, you made it.

My jeep was down for over a week while I did this. If I can build it or buy it for the same price, I will usually build it just for the satisfaction. I plan on a matching rear bumper and rock rails, if I can ever find the time.....

tanner_carter 06-05-2014 01:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NWHoneybadger (Post 11123386)
I don't remember the exact cost, but it peaked a little over $200. A lot of the cost was having the main piece bent on a press brake into the initial shape. The truth is that you buy a winch bumper for around the same cost if your so inclined, but it won't be nearly the Prius crushing bumper that this one is!

I am the same way, I would a lot rather build it myself than buy it any day. I was just curious on what it ended up running you in the end. I would say for around $200 you have 5 times the bumper as someone else at that price.

wyobow 11-18-2014 09:49 PM

Nice work. What welder do you have?

NWHoneybadger 11-19-2014 08:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by wyobow (Post 14906937)
Nice work. What welder do you have?

Lincoln mig 120v. It's the "3200 hd" I think, which is the hottest one you can get before jumping to 240v. I run 75/25 argon/co2 for shielding gas.

cavediverjc 11-21-2014 10:26 AM

Absolutely beautiful work. Your attention to detail is impressive.

Rubicon_Gil 11-21-2014 12:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by NWHoneybadger (Post 11123386)
..... The truth is that you buy a winch bumper for around the same cost if your so inclined, but it won't be nearly the Prius crushing bumper that this one is!

That is some nice work! Sharp lookin manly bumper! Fit for crushing those pansy, politically correct Priuses any day of the week!

Well done!


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