Interior / Exterior Visual TechThis section contains discussion related to visual modifications of the Toyota FJ Cruiser. Some items might include dash kits, roof rack modifications and other visual modifications.
Front receiver + brush guard + skid plate = impossible?
I have a new-to-me 2007 FJ (lil' blue) with a factory skid plate. We plan to do mild off-roading (Death Valley, Mojave Road, South Padre, Joshua Tree, etc.). I would like to have a front receiver for recovery and for a front basket. I would like a brush guard because they look so cool. I want a skid plate because car guts are expensive and rare in the desert.
It looks like front receivers eliminate the use of a front skid plate. It looks like brush guards use the front recovery loops for attachment, and are not strong enough for recovery.
Brush bars are considered by many to be damage multipliers. Why don't you just get a winch bumper with a winch mount and a skid will fit just fine?
Interesting thought on the brush guard. I considered a winch and bumper, but I am trying to avoid the cost. I do have a 2-ton come-along and chain to take along, but I hope to avoid getting stuck altogether.
It seems like a winch starts a whole chain of expenses, bumper, dual batteries, isolator, bigger alternator, etc.
Hobby it is not. I write and perform music, collect Indian art, hoard history books (over 700), etc. Too many hobbies as it is. The FJ was purchased because it seemed the most reliable way to see all the dirt roads we have passed in the last five years while driving in our motor home, with the FJ being reasonably comfortable to drive 1000 or so miles to get to the dirt road. I do not relish time spent working on a vehicle - I built a couple of street rods and the doing is all out of my system. I hate changing oil.
I don't think having the equipment would help me avoid getting stuck - I hope I didn't make it sound that way. I would avoid getting stuck by not taking chances on a dicey trail, not bashing my radiator on a rock, traveling in a group, avoiding the wet or muddy season, following direction of those more experienced than me, going slow enough to anticipate my next move, scouting stream crossings or tall grass before proceeding, carrying an extra accessory belt, bringing along a decent tool kit, having a couple of straps, chains, the mentioned come-along, and being willing to turn back.
The simplest way to accomplish what you want is probably to add a front receiver like the one from Curt. Then go for lightweight skids like those from Ricochet. I'd forgo the grill guard because they don't usually accomplish very much except mount off-road lights. Going the full bumper and winch thing can quickly become very costly. It starts with suspension (springs or spacers) then shocks then upper A-arms then...
I once asked Lucrum if they planned producing a sturdy front receiver and they said the demand wasn't there. I disagree but then I don't produce front receivers either. For the price that some of these rigs have been modified, you could afford an awesome dedicated off-road crawler with a trailer. That's not counting the extra daily costs they pay through poor gas mileage and chewed up mud tires used for commuting.
OldMatB, A consideration is to fabricate your own front receiver. Suprisingly this is easier than you may think and would solve a couple of your issues. If you look under your rig you will see the primary crossmember/bumper backing. This is held on by 8 bolts (easily accesible) and a couple of trim to bumper pieces. Once removed this can be boxed welded and the a receiver placed on top of it. Then the only thing remaining is to cut a square in the lowere grill mesh to access it (the recieiver).
Now the strength of this depends on your welding (or your welders welding) but it is quick and provides a very inexpensive option without hitting your wallet or altering the vehicle where there will be warrentee issues etc. As to a brush guard.....I wouldnt do it. Not on the factory bumper.
God forgives...Rocks Dont!
Thats what plates and sliders are for!!!!
I looked at the Cort front receiver, but it sat so low, it would practically eliminate the stock skid guard. That would leave either a low accessory attached, or a nice extension of the frame waiting to smack something. I have a front receiver on my Tundra, and hitting a parking billet at 1/2 mph is jarring. At any speed over that would be horrendous.
You have talked me out of the stock-type brush guard. Dragon, your bumper is wonderful, but probably to aggressive and expensive for us. Your photos on your build thread are inspiring!
Fab a receiver... I saw the parts at Harbor Freight yesterday... I know a good welder... Receiver up and out of the way... A basket in the receiver would still have a good approach angle...
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