We were back at it again this Saturday for Bumber 2: Party in the Rear.
Removing the rear bumper cover wasn't too bad, about a dozen or so bolts and clips hold it in place.
The old hitch was a little more recalcitrant.
@Crazyjeeper tacked up the base pieces of the Coastal Offroad bumper kit and we mocked it up.
Found that the air pump for the now non-existent rear air springs was in the way. And the last bolt was blocked by some vacuum block, held in by a rusty bolt that I could only access with a small wrench, a quarter turn at a time.
Pile of crap
We also noted that the body mount bolts hit the bottom of the steel plate, but a unibit made quick work of that. Only bent one smaller drill bit
Finishing tacks on the driver's side
But then heat stroke success!
Need a beer after 13 hours of this face
CJ will be going through a mountain of wire and flap disks this week before final painting and mounting. Depending on how things go, we may get the tire carrier setup as well.
@Crazyjeeper spent a ton of time finishing up the welds and grinding everything to pretty it up. None of this would have been possible without CJ's and @Nabster 's skills/time and constant help. Much appreciated, gents.
Getting it into position for the 43rd of 108 times.
OSHA approved lifting method.
After making some modifications to make sure everything fit nicely, we decided to get started on the tire carrier.
The not-a-Punisher skull is from the heat transfer of the gusset and square tube behind the backing plate. Clearance with the tailgate all the way open is tiiiiiight...like 1/16". Like a glooove!
This ended up being a multi day and many hour ordeal, but it's "painted" and on now. I couldn't be happier with the result.
The swarf near the safety pin is the result of drilling holes in tacky paint at 11pm on a Tuesday night when we have work the next day. Pro tip. Drill first if you're going to slap your bumper on basically right after painting.
I've put some miles on and it hasn't fallen off, nor has the spare tire tried to come through the rear hatch.
Obviously, my license plate is now mostly concealed and I need to rig up a an adapter for the old trailer hitch lights and mount a new bracket with lights for that. Also, my backup camera gives a great view of the spare tire and scaffolding--my plan is to figure out a solution to mount it in/around the rear spoiler. The paint needs to be addressed at some point as well to clean up the runs applied gratuitously by yours truly along with the metal shavings now stuck in parts of it. The old plastic bumper cover sitting on CJ's trailer will get chopped up to fit the current ugly gaps.
Eventually, I'll get some LED cube lights and wire them up inside the cabin. I've got ARB LED fog lights on the way for the front bumper later this month, so I'll be able to finish buttoning that end up for the time being (until I get a winch).
I ended up using the ARB supplied 3M VHB or equivalent tape to put my plate on the bumper. Still need to order up a proper mount with lights and figure out the back up camera relocation. I'd like to put it high up near the spoiler, but for now I don't care enough to bother.
GX is still running well, just did my first big road trip in it. I've had the car for over two years and have really just used it in the metroplex and seeing family in Houston. Went to Missouri and back without a hiccup.
Nothing too crazy in the update departments:
@Nabster trimmed the old bumper skin to fill in the exposed body and it's cleaned up nicely. We also put on the rest of the ARB stone guards, but the side pieces didn't exactly line up on the bottom, so there may be some fabri-cobbling to come. I also installed a Fumoto valve last oil change that is dripping ( ), so I'll be putting the conventional drain plug back on shortly. Also ordered a Warn XD9000 so I can drag my fat ass up things I should have a locking diff for.