Driving with tailgate down - Ford Bronco Forum
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  • 3 Post By fordbronco1995
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 09:14 PM Thread Starter
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Driving with tailgate down

Is it a bad idea - rear glass-wise? I have to pick up a large table tomorrow and it will hang out the back so Iíll have to remove the spare swing out and let the table hang out the back with the gate down, strapped in of course. Will this damage my glass? Could it shatter the glass or is it common to drive short distances with the gate down?


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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 09:24 PM
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I wouldnt think it would be any different than having the window down with the gate up, the run channel should hold the glass in place


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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 09:29 PM
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I hauled a 65 inch tv home about 4 miles, and a snow blower about 12 miles with the gate open. No worries
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:17 PM
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Over the years I've carried a lot of stuff in my Broncos with the tailgate down, but all but one of them had the inside spare.
My '94 has the outside spare, and one time I needed some lumber, I took the spare tire off the swing-away mount (to cut down the weight of the tire hanging unsupported on the swing away mount.) I took a bungee and secured the swing away mount to the tailgate so it wouldn't swing out into the next lane, and I padded the tailgate with a towel (IIRC) where the tire mount hits the tailgate when the gate is down.
The trip was about 10 miles on some 2 lane Lapeer county roads. The last mile was a dirt road.
It was always easier with the inside spare Bronco's ('87, '92, and '96)
As long as you have the spare off the mount and the mount secured so it doesn't swing wide, you should be fine. I wouldn't recommend driving with the tailgate open and no weight on it, as it will bounce up and come down to a sudden stop. There is no shock absorbing give in the check cables.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:22 PM
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I've replaced my factory spare tire carrier pivots with other "pins", retained by cotter pins. If I need to haul something big, I'll remove the whole swing away carrier and the back seat. I've driven with several sheets of plywood and 2X4s in the back with the tailgate down for 10+ miles with no issue.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:35 PM Thread Starter
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Driving with tailgate down

Ok cool. Thanks guys. @Mikey350 , Iím here in Oakland county and roads are probably as bad here too. I have a custom spare carrier that I can remove with one big castle nut. I will have weight on the tailgate so no worries there. I just didnít want to do something stupid and lose a back window.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:58 PM
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@MS88Bronc - Taking the whole carrier off is great. When I was needing to carry that lumber in the back of the '94, I looked at taking the whole carrier off, but I was 50+ miles from home (at my then cottage), limited in tools, and the stock hinge pins didn't look like they were going be easily driven out. You should be fine.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 04:32 PM Thread Starter
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Well, she made it. I was having a hard time getting the carrier off of its hinge, and I didnít have the time to fight with it today, so I just pulled off the spare and drove with it open. It has a pin to keep it locked in the open position, so, with the tire off, itís fine.

Window didnít go smash on the terrible roads so Iím happy. And I have a new-to-me patio table and chairs.


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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 09:26 AM
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Bit late to the party here, but I hauled a full size ATV in the back of mine on a 60 mile round trip. The top was off of course! I simply tied the spare tire carrier as tight as I could get it to the tailgate. Now that I think about it, the tailgate may have been tied up at a 45į angle too. Been 15 years, I cant remember lol

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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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@BigBlue 94 - Yeah, definitely didnít want the tailgate bouncing around, as it would want to with that torsion bar inside. The spare carrier has a small drop pin that you have to lift to close it, so in that pic above, the pin is in and itís locked in the open position. I wrapped the end of one bungee around it just so it wouldnít wiggle around and possible smack the edge of the gate while I was driving. It stuck out a bit to the right, but it was only about 8Ē farther out than the pass mirror, so it wasnít too bad.

When I was trying to take off the carrier before, I discovered that it has a pair of bearings and races on the top and bottom of the hinge, and it didnít really want to come off. Just figured I wouldnít mess with it and fight it if I didnít have to.
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