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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
First off, I was shocked at how easily everything came apart. I thought for sure that it would be full of brain-numbing fasteners and clips, but the whole thing didn't take more than 20-30 minutes. Thanks, dpatton, for the great write-ups! They certainly helped everything go more smoothly and quickly.

Secondly, I was pretty surprised at the "beef" of the factory steel bumper behind the plastic. Though it looked to be only about 1/8" boxed steel (guess I didn't pay that much attention to the thickness), it actually seemed reasonably stout. Not that it would come close to comparing to the 3/16" and 1/4" steel that makes up a Shrock, obviously.

Third, there is a lot of room to work! I didn't realize the giant void that is under there. I don't think a hidden winch mount would be very hard to make at all after seeing the room there is to work.

Well, back out to the garage. I have a couple nights after work to take a good assessment of things and possibly fab some mounting brackets before it all has to go back together before the wife's plane comes back Thursday night. Not sure which direction to head with it at this point; I was really not expecting so much room under there. I may try to make a hidden winch mount and a heavy duty front skid/radiator cover after seeing all the free space, but we will see. Stay tuned...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
rroadkilll said:
Any pics of it off??? For us guys that haven't had theres off yet...
I haven't snapped any pics yet, but there are plenty of pics floating around here with the front bumper removed; try here: http://thenewx.org/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=8463&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0 I will hopefully take some pics tonight as I start putting some ideas together. I'm leaning more towards retaining the factory plastic and making an intergal skid plate/winch mount around the factory plastic skid plate/front license plate area; this would be a whole lot simplier than a whole new front bumper. Plus, I can always go back later and just add the sides if I decide I want to go the replacement bumper route. We'll see what I come up with later.
 

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yeah...take plenty of pics with the bumper off please, i am looking at maybe having one of the guys at work try to fab something up and he said if he could get a good idea of what everything looks like behing there and the points where he needs to mount it to the truck would help...i know there are some photos on here, but i would like some better ones?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, I was hoping to get the mounting brackets figured out tonight, and get an overall game plan together. I think I was successful on these accounts for the most part. Here is what I came up with as an overall raw design.







The brackets need to be a little wider for a little extra meat around the top hole. I found some 3" angle laying around at work, but looks like 3 1/2" or 4" would be ideal. I am going to see what I can come up with tomorrow.

The lower 1 1/2" angle that the plate is sitting on is temporary. It needs to be replaced with 1/4". Again, it was what I found laying around. My thinking behind all the angle is so that every connection will have both a bolted and welded connection for added strength. I am also going to add a piece of plate to the frame mounting brackets to protrude back under the frame and mount in the factory tow hook holes.

Below is the overall "look" I am thinking. Anything below the yellow line (winch plate) will remain, except as necessary to clear the new skid which will travel from about the front of the winch plate to just below the sway bar (like how the Shrock mounts). I will notch out the factory plastic as necessary for the winch plate to protrude out slightly.



As you can see here, the factory bumper is relatively close to fitting back on as is, without cutting out the front centersection for the winch plate. But, not quite.



It has been a bit hard working with "imaginary" clearances since I don't have a physical winch yet. I have been working with an M8000 winch detail from the Warn site, and stacking some wood up as mock dimensions. I may wait to finalize everything when I get an actual winch, but no telling when that might be. I think clearance should be just fine.

Well, that is all for now. I need to work on how to give everything a finished look, and decide where to taper things. This is all pretty rough construction, and I will be take a little more time now and contemplate how to give things a finished look. I am hoping to only notch out the portion of the factory plastic beneath the stock plastic grey skid on the front bumper (already removed in pic #4), so I could attach that back on if I got rid of the winch mount for whatever reason.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
firemansxterra said:
yeah...take plenty of pics with the bumper off please, i am looking at maybe having one of the guys at work try to fab something up and he said if he could get a good idea of what everything looks like behing there and the points where he needs to mount it to the truck would help...i know there are some photos on here, but i would like some better ones?


 

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hey man...thanks those pictures are exactly what i needed...you are the man...i am looking at doing almost the same thing as you...and from what i see so far yours looks good...keep up the good work, and keep us posted...again you are the man
 

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if and when this works...would you be willing to fab up a few more and sell and ship?!?!?!?
 

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I mean this only as a compliment but this thread should really be moved to Xterra Projects. Just my two cents. It is really cool too by the way.
 

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I agree.......
anybody wanna fix that?!?!?
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Mods, feel free to move the post if it is better suited in the project section.

Here is tonight's progress, and the last of the nightly work sessions. Progress will be a bit slower now, as I'll probably finish a lot of it (not that there is really a ton left) on my lunch breaks at work.

Made some beefier brackets in lieu of the prototypes last night...



Got everything mocked-up for tack welding...



And one last trial fitment before it goes to work with me for final welding...



Here is a shot of how far it sticks out in the front. Not any more than stock really, considering the license plate mount and such.



Bumper is about two inches from fitting as is, but didn't have the nerve to start hacking it up until I am ready to mount this up for good. As I said, the theory is the factory plastic skid will cover the notch I'll have to cut to clear the winch mount, but that remains to be determined.

EDIT: CAD drawings are no longer available.

So, off to bed since it is now about midnight. Wife is gonna come home to a messy house, but at least her ride is put back together.
 

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dude, if this works out and you want to make some more, i'd be first in line to purchase one. I've been thinking about this mod for a long time, but never pulled the trigger. Thanks for taking the initiative!!!! looks great so far!
 

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That would be awsome if you would release the specs' and a CAD drawing....I could work off that!
 
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