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Modified Curt front end hitch reciever + alternative installation

14302 Views 14 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  cgbrocksmith
What I did was take a curt front hitch reciever and modify it so instead of it going below the bumper bar, it goes above, thus allowing you use it as a winch mount.

Step 1
Chop it up real good. I cut off the tow points and the part of the hitch reciever that gets bolted onto the fj's tow points.

Step 2 - the slot
Of course there are different ways to cut the slot. (I used a band saw)
Drill holes for a slot

Step 3
cut the slot out. I used a band saw.

Step 4 - Intsallation

To get it on the FJ I had to remove the bumper, move the AC line, then chop a little bit:

Then drill some new holes for the bolts.

The test went well. I pulled on a tree untill it stalled, kind of scary but necessary. I've got a video of it but i need to edit out the swearing(the winch was doing weird things, turned out I had, sort of, screwed up the motor when I wired it, but I managed to fix it in the end)

Hope that was clear... I'm not sure if anyone else would ever try this, cheap but fabrication-requiring, way to a winch mount but I'm pretty dam happy with it.

Could someone who knows alot about torquing bolts tell me what sort of torque I should put on the bolts that hold this thing on?

Here some pics of how it looks with the bumper on.

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I was expecting it to flex a bit, you can see, two pictures down, that there is a small gap between this part of the body, and the hitch. Without pull the hitch is just touching that body cross memeber, whatever it is.
I don't think it's a problem.
I haven't wired up the back yet, I've been wondering if for the back I could have a black wire connected to the body, since the battery is connect to it, or is this a bad idea...
I found these dc plugs,131,53,363_1196&action=product
Went with the 175amp one cos of price and it's just as thick as the cables that came with the winch. prob still a rip of though... I was getting impatiant looking for parts.
Very nice job. Forgive my ignorance but is the idea to be able to move the winch to either front or rear when needed? Or is this just a way to mount the winch in front?
Ignorance fully forgiven, that is one of the advantages, of using a front hitch receiver to hold a winch. other advantages are the weight of the winch doesn't sit in the front, so it doesn't cause the front suspension to sag, very cheap, winch doesn't stay out in the weather while driving so potentially longer winch life maybe.
and also...

this is the exact concept that i was thinking about doing. didnt realize how much cutting and fab was involved. it would be nice to have the flexibilty of winching front or rear or not even have the winch on at all. i was told you were limited capacity wise, cant match 8000lb winch to 5000lb hitch, but we all have towed or pulled more than "stated" capacity. got some finish photos of what it looks like complete?
... with the license plate on you cannot tell its there. I basically chopped away all the black plastic grate behind the license plate.
5000 is the capacity, so the breaking strength should be well above 12 k or something, and the breaking strength of 5/16 winch rope is 12k so it should be alright.

Fine I'll list some cons,
We don't know the capacity of it so it would be good to stick with 8000lb winch and use a snatch block in bad situations, it's slightly heavy to carry from the back and then to mount - put the pin in and plug it in.

Ya I hadn't realized how much fab work would be involved either... I thought I would do it in 5 hours or sth. Took me prob 15 hours to finish. It's not very hard fab work though, just need a bit of care with the angle grinder and drill...

I hope the 175 amp disconnects will be enough. I've seen numbers as high as 408 amps on a 9,500 lb winch at near stall.

I think the 175 amps is for continuous draw over a lonng period of time... I feel the contacts some time after I use it to see if they get warm.

Looks Great, good job!
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So far so good! hehe
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