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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I have finally decided to make a front bumper. I bought my FJ with this huge Fab Fours bumper installed and its been just fine. When I was on smaller 33-34" tires I would hit the bumper on obstacles but since I moved up to the 37" it hasn't been an issue. That said, its time to build something a little sleeker. Plus I've always wanted a 3 hoop. I will be using 1/8" Hardox 450 steel. This is a hardened steel that is 5x stronger than regular carbon steel. Since I am using 1/8" to save weight its more like 3.5x stronger than the thicker 3/16" steel that is standard on most bumpers. I am saving 25 lbs by using 1/8" instead of 3/16". And since the company I work for buys so much Hardox the cost difference is not that much at all. The only issue is that it can be a little trickier to work with and design, and obviously if it needs some grinding done that will take a long time. Good thing I have a plasma cutter.

Oh, and I'll be cutting off the lower front crossmember from the frame and welding one flush with the bottom of the frame rails. Should be fun. (y)

Here is my final design in Solidworks. Will probably weight 85 lbs after welding. I may add the tubing later after its been completed. Hopefully it gets lasered out in the next couple weeks and I can start welding.

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
So 2 months later I finally have all the parts ready to go and get a chance to work on this new front bumper. Overall bumper weight is probably about 90 lbs (including what I've welded to reinforce the frame). But the outer "shell" that bolts onto the frame is only about 65 lbs, and I'm removing about 20 lbs by cutting off the front lower crossmember. After many hours of work I am done. Cost to me was about $550 + $50 in welding supplies. Cheaper than the RESZ weld it yourself kit which was the goal. And lightweight hardened steel. Taking off the old Fab Fours was a major PITA. I vowed to never install it again once removed.

Tire Wheel Vehicle Car Motor vehicle


Alot of modifications were done to fit the condenser up to where I needed it. I raised it 2" higher to get clearance at the frame rails to weld in a 2x2 tube. It was alot of work and I wouldn't necessarily recommend it. Guys have done similar mods to get ultra-high clearance bumpers on 4runners and Tacomas but the FJ condenser and radiator are about 2" longer and wider. Yank on the air compressor line and it'll give you another inch. Keep in mind I have a 1.5" body lift. Cut some of the headlight housing away.

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Yes the radiator still hangs down lower than the frame rails (unlike on Tacoma and 4runner). I will have to figure out a new front skid plate once I cut off that crossmember.
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I cut off the stock bumper mounting brackets and left the bare frame rails. Then starting tac'ing everything together.
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I was very surprised everything lined up so well with the body. No modifications required. I guess all that time spent with a tape measure and my notebook paid off.
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Final welded and the outside ground smooth.
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Here you can see the new beefy 3/8" bumper mounting plate that has been welded to the frame along with the new 2x2x.25" crossmember. 13 easy to access bolts hold the bumper to the new 3/8" thick frame plate. Overkill.
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First test fit with the winch was a success. Fits much tighter than the old bumper and required taking about 1/4" off the front of the vertical radiator core support bar. Its about an inch away from my trans/power steering coolers.
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Still some more finishing touches and lights to install. Without the winch the front end is so light it sits way too high and needs lowered. And that lower crossmember still needs cut off for maximum clearance.
 

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Very cool! If you can round more of the edges it will look more in fitting with your FJ as well. I'll post a pic of mine later- got to go to work!
 
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· 4-Corners Moderator
2008 Toyota FJ Cruiser Trail Teams Special Edition
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That is super exciting! Looking forward to seeing this develop! I think the sleeker bumper will much better fit your build than your bulky current one, even if rubbing isn't an issue any more! Curious to see what 3 hoop design you go with.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Nice work man! If you’re interested I run solidworks as well and could use the Logopress plug in to flatten it out and get you exact flat patterns for cutting and press brake work. (Assuming you need help)
Thanks but I probably log at least 4 hours of solidworks a day and use the sheetmetal feature.
 

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Thanks but I probably log at least 4 hours of solidworks a day and use the sheetmetal feature.
I figured as much! Logopress is pretty slick as it accounts for forming variables from different steel types and what not. I’m not sure how the sheet metal feature works though. I just know Logopress improved it. Did you model the winch up or were you able to get CAD somehow?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Did you model the winch up or were you able to get CAD somehow?
I asked Warn for the model and they sent it lol. But the version of my winch they sent was slightly off (the front face on mine is not raised out) so I'm doing some guess work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
You know peeps are going to be wanting one of these, right? :cool:
Yeah but my version will involve cutting off the front lower crossmember and welding on a new bumper mount plate. Not difficult if you have the tools but it will limit who would buy it. I just couldn't bring myself to spend the $1500+ on a front bumper when I can make a one-off for way cheaper. Plus its cool to have one-of-a-kind modifications.

That said, maybe someday these will be available, entirely depends on how this one goes.
 

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I asked Warn for the model and they sent it lol. But the version of my winch they sent was slightly off (the front face on mine is not raised out) so I'm doing some guess work.
Well I can honestly say I would not have expected them to just give it out like that lol Props to Warn for that for sure.
 
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