'79 Swingout Tire Carrier Bumper Build - Page 2 - Ford Bronco Forum
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post #21 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 10:22 PM
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I feel like a bumper should be just that a bumper. Designed to take impacts. If you are attaching pull points they should go thru the bumper and attach to the frame sammiching (yes I spelled that right) the frame rail between the clevis mount and bumper bracket. If the receiver goes thru bumper it should go back to a separate crossmember. This reduces the pulling stresses on the bumper and frame, spreading the load out over a greater distance and depth.

Just my two cents worth, but I over do things anyway.
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post #22 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by aintskeerd View Post
Can't wait to see the front bumper thread!

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Ha! You know, that's the one part of this truck I may never modify. I've got a cactus smasher on there with the chrome bumper and I just love the way it looks. I think i'd be kicking myself down the road if I ever got rid of it. I did make a front receiver hitch so I can run a winch up there currently anyway.

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Originally Posted by Redwagon View Post
nice but for strength i would have run the brackets thru the bumper
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Originally Posted by Hillbilly Heaven View Post
I feel like a bumper should be just that a bumper. Designed to take impacts. If you are attaching pull points they should go thru the bumper and attach to the frame sammiching (yes I spelled that right) the frame rail between the clevis mount and bumper bracket. If the receiver goes thru bumper it should go back to a separate crossmember. This reduces the pulling stresses on the bumper and frame, spreading the load out over a greater distance and depth.

Just my two cents worth, but I over do things anyway.
I think in a perfect world yes you would run the brackets through the bumper and tie them directly into the frame. But it adds a layer of complexity to the design and really just isn't necessary or sometimes feasible. Also if you look at any offroad bumper on the market, none of them have clevis mounts tying through or into the frame. None of the fabrication parts retails sell clevis mounts designed to be tied into the frame. In fact, most are advertised as surface mount weld-in.

I also don't think there's any need to have a separate crossmember for the receiver. The pulling stresses are actually distributed pretty well to the frame with my design because 1) the receiver center axis is much closer to the center linear axis of the frame rails so there's no moment arm on the frame to create twisting and 2) the frame mounting bolts have a sufficient cylindrical surface area to transmit the load to the frame.

There are a few remaining design tricks I'll be using to add additional rigidity & weldment strength, however.

First, I do plan on 'sammiching' the frame rail with the current frame brackets and an additional plate on the opposite side. What this will do is tie the heads of all the mounting bolts together, so that if one comes loose, or if one tends to carry more of the stress than the others, that load will be distributed across all the bolts more evenly and I won't have any wallowing out of holes or localized bending in the actual frame rail.

Second, I will be adding some gussets to the frame mounts to add additional weld surface area on the back face of the bumper. This will disperse the load across a larger weld surface area and mitigate the risk of bad penetration on the current welds.

All in all though, this bumper is not designed to be a normal bumper because the truck is not designed to be a normal truck. I would say for a vehicle that isn't a daily road rig and is meant to provide functionality in an offroad environment, you don't want the bumper designed to deform under reasonable impact. You want a bumper that can be used as a sliding barrier between obstacles, you want a jacking point, you want maximum departure angles & ground clearance, air tank functionality is nice, and of course you want to be able to carry a spare tire securely. None of those features are realistically attainable with a 'normal' bumper that you would want on a strictly street vehicle. That being said, I do have to consciously take the risk of having an ultra-stiff bumper while on-road and potentially killing my frame and taking a larger shock with a rear-end impact. But that's the risk I and thousands of others are willing to take I suppose...

1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #23 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 12:39 PM
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These are weld thru clevis mounts. 3" wide by 3/4" thick by up to 6.250" long. They even offer a heavy duty version that is 1" thick.
https://www.comp4x4.com/collections/...nt=24218507267

Granted your design does exactly as you say with the receiver except one detail. Vertical deflection. Adding the additional crossmember behind the bumper stops the vertical twist and will also give more lateral force reduction on the receiver. The short distance between the face and back of your design does not reduce the lateral load. The short distance makes it act as if the bumper is a solid. Not saying yours is a bad design just think it could be improved to add strength and durability. Spread the loads over a wider area and distance so the force is reduced.
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post #24 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Progress update

Interesting, I had never seen those ones before. Not a bad price too! I definitely haven't seen those used commonly around my area...

Another brief update on progress... Pics to come later.

Spent several long afternoons and evenings working in the garage on spindle installation, endcaps, pressure testing and detail work. Still have a decent amount of pressure testing to do. I'll be the first to admit that I severely underestimated the amount of time I would spend tracking down pin-hole or smaller air leaks to make this thing airtight. Grind, weld, grind, test, repeat... So lots of work with not much progress to show for it.

Gives me a tremendous appreciation for welders who's jobs depend on their stuff not leaking!

Here's a teaser before I finished a few things to make it airtight


A few observations:
  1. It's evident that I will need some good gas tank protection in the near future
  2. I think I need to cut some tube off my receiver to bring it in closer to the bumper. I will have to put special holes in all my hitches, receiver d-rings, and winch cradle to accommodate this but no biggie

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-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #25 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 05:49 PM
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How are you presure testing? Are you using water? If not fill it with water. Leaves nice wet mark where weepers are. Remember water runs downhill so leak will be highest point of trail. If you lose pressure but no signs of water leaks then change the position of bumper and try again as water may not have been at leak area. Lay it flat, flip it over, hang it vertical, hang it from other end. I would guess you are using water and soap mix looking for bubbles. Another option is fill it with air and dunk it in a large tank of water. Most people don't have access to a tank large enough.
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post #26 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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Finding the leaks is not the hard/time consuming part. I pressurize the tank with my compressor & use a super soapy water solution and it bubbles up very nicely/easily.

It just takes time to mark the hole, grind it out, re-weld, grind down, & retest. Especially if the pinhole is in a part of a longer weld section, or corner of something since I like to basically take the whole weld out and start over rather than pile a bunch of weld on top of each other.

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-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #27 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-15-2017, 12:07 AM Thread Starter
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Progress progress progress!

Alright we're making some headway! I'll let the photos speak for themselves.

Preheating the bumper & spindle to tack it in place & start welding. It was like 20 degrees this day.


Spindle installed


Not bad for my first time welding anything round I think...


Here's the endcaps I designed. They are actually 2 1/4" plates welded & blended together. Nice & thick and very stiff.



3/8" NPT Air tank bungs. These little buggers were not very easy to get sealed perfectly.


3/8" Standoff plate for the trailer light plug receptacle






Here's the additional support gussets for the frame brackets.



I added a angled gusset and blended it into the endcaps.





1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #28 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-15-2017, 12:12 AM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Installed Pictures

Pictures of it installed!


















Oh, and since my tailgate happened to be really dusty it was actually perfect lighting to take a picture of my 'trail log'

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-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #29 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-15-2017, 01:17 AM
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well, I'm no professional fab guy or anything but that's looks pretty damn cool and very stout to me.
nice work, afaiac.
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post #30 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-15-2017, 06:40 AM
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Very nice!

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post #31 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-15-2017, 01:53 PM
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Bumper came out awesome Now im curious to see your plans for the tire carrier.

Don't worry about your clevis mounts. Tons of people say they 'have' to go to the frame, but I flush mounted mine and theyve held just fine for 10+ years of hardcore wheelin abuse.
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post #32 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everybody! Just got back in from the garage working on the tire carrier design. I'm going to keep it real simple; I don't like the look of lots of jerry cans and high lifts hanging off the back of rigs so I will not be incorporating mounts for any of those. My high lift is mounted nicely inside already anyway.

I am going to try and keep the tire as low and close to the tailgate as possible. The tire will be tilted at a slight angle; about half as 'tilted' as the rear glass on our rigs.

Now I need to hunt down the right toggle latch for keeping it shut and some square tubing...

QUESTION! Does anyone have any input on color suggestions for paint? I'm leaning heavily towards the Rustoleum 'Hammered' finish in black, but I'm going to paint some scrap sample pieces first...

I think it's between that and straight gloss black.

1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #33 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 01:57 AM
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one of my chief complaints about the standard rear carrier after going from the '90 w/internal to the '95 w/external... damn thing is too high and centered. I like to see as much as I can out the back, after getting used to it. I'd push it as far over and keep it as low as I could and still make it perform and look good... which becomes a matter of opinion at some point.
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post #34 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 02:12 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BikerPepe` View Post
one of my chief complaints about the standard rear carrier after going from the '90 w/internal to the '95 w/external... damn thing is too high and centered. I like to see as much as I can out the back, after getting used to it. I'd push it as far over and keep it as low as I could and still make it perform and look good... which becomes a matter of opinion at some point.
I'm with you! I like the way you think.
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1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #35 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-17-2017, 12:22 PM
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The hammered black is not really black, but closer to a gun metal color. The 'hammered' texture is also more subtle than it is in the brighter colors. That said, when my bronco was black, I always painted my bumpers that color, I liked the contrast.
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post #36 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-18-2017, 07:34 AM
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I like the color it is now and how it contrast with the black on your Bronco. The sanded down edges make it pop in my opinion. Just clear it and call it a day.
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post #37 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-18-2017, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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I like the color it is now and how it contrast with the black on your Bronco. The sanded down edges make it pop in my opinion. Just clear it and call it a day.
That's an interesting perspective... Hadn't thought about that...

Wonder what my wife would say, I'm trying to involve her in the color selection process

1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #38 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-24-2017, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Tire Carrier Construction

Time to work on the tire carrier! This was actually quite a bit more work than I anticipated.

Trying to mock-up the approximate location & angle of where I wanted the tire to be. Although I'm using one of my actual 4 35" MT/Rs to mock it up, my real spare is only a 33" tire unfortunately...


First issue to overcome: spindle sleeve sat quite a bit higher off the top deck of the bumper than I was expecting. I shoulda done some more measurements before welding it in but oh well, we'll make it work.


Couple angled cuts on the horizontal band saw and bam, main beam is 1/2" off the deck.


Tire carrier starting to take shape. Note the holes where the angled pieces will go so I can pass electrical wiring up through the tire mount plate through the center hole of the wheel.
















So after starting at this for a really long time, I decided I didn't like my first attempt at this. The tire was too far out from the tailgate for my liking and I wanted a bit more angle.




So back to the angle grinder. Chopped off the mount and re-welded everything. I also chopped the excess off the top of the center post. Much happier with not only the angle but also my welding job.




Nice & tight to the tailgate and a bit more aggressive angle, looks nice



Onto the latching mechanism. I actually was a little short on steel across the bumper so I had to graft some more on. No biggie.



I got a super nice quality De-Sta-Co 331-R latch off amazon for like $32 bucks. Definitely worth it. I especially like the redundant locking mechanism. It would have been nice to get it in stainless but it was about double the cost.



The latch catch & resting pad. The key here is to get the location & heights of everything just right so that the swing arm rests on the pad just barely when closed, and so the latch pulls in a downward motion against the pad so that you have support from the pads in both the horizontal AND vertical axes. This prevents stress oscillations in the spindle and ensures that it only gets loaded in 1 direction & prevents vibration.




Note the downward angle of the latch u-bolt


License plate brackets. Easy peasy! This is why we hold onto boxes of small steel scrap pieces for ages...



With the actual 33" spare on. I'm now pretty sad that it's a crappy looking old white rim with a crappy old small tire...




But I'm happy with how it's turned out so far! Lots of little details left... Swing out hold open pin, lighting & electrical, then the finish welding, grinding, sanding & paint work
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1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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post #39 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-25-2017, 01:52 AM
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make one for me!


seriously though... looking very good. I like how tight you were able to keep that tire.
very interested to see how you finish it all out.
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post #40 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-26-2017, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BikerPepe` View Post
make one for me!


seriously though... looking very good. I like how tight you were able to keep that tire.
very interested to see how you finish it all out.
Thanks! Although I won't make you one, I will likely make the plans, parts list, and cost list available to everyone
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1979 Bronco 400m 0.060 over 'Black Betty'
-Edelbrock Carb & Manifold, Hedman Headers, Flowmaster Dual Mufflers, Comp Cams Extreme Energy Cam & Valvetrain Kit
-Duff LAs, WH progressive coils, Bilstein 7100s Lincoln HB, York OBA, Taurus Radiator Fan
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