Alan's Rear Bumper
Serious hitch bumper
I just acquired another truck, but it came without a rear bumper. My philosophy about bumpers is to overbuild them to a fault. I figure if I get hit the other guy is going to come out the loser. And if I hit something there will be damage to the hitee anyhow so I might as well minimize damage on my end. This one will look pretty much like a typical, flimsy, factory step and tow bumper, but made with real steel. The rear plates are going to be 1/4 x 6" flat, the hitch plate will be 5/8 x 5, welded to 3/8" plates connecting to the truck frame. I started on it today, got as far as bending the ends of the rear plates. Got some pictures which I will be adding as I go along. The plan right now is to get it done in time to send it along with a batch of material from a local fab shop which is going to the galvanizers. Also hoping to get a headache rack made and sent with the same stuff. That galvanizing is SO nice,, no rust, it darkens to a nice soft gray in a couple years.
Last night I got started by bending the two strips which will make the rear "skin" of the bumper. These are 1/4 x 6" flat stock. I made a jig with some scrap stock and a section of pipe to form around. Liberal application of the blue brake (torch) convinced the bar to form a neat radius.
Heat it and beat it...
Sometimes a little discreet force was needed to keep things moving along.
Parts and pieces...
This is the framework holding the hitch plate to the truck. The main plate is 5/8 x 6". The side plates going to the frame is 3/8" plate with a stiffener of 1/2 x 1 1/2" and a diagonal brace of 3/8 x 4".
The right half of the shell is in place and tacked.
Top is on!
By now both sides of the shell are on, the plates that frame the center recess are in and the top plate has been fitted and tacked. Top is 1/8" tread plate.
From the side....
Side view of the project so far. The top is 8" deep, slightly more than a standard GM rear bumper. The center recess is also wider than normal by several inches. As I get older and (more) clumsy there is a tendency for the earth to rise up and smote me more often than it used to. The extra room will make it a little less likely that I will make a wrong step and beat up on the body needlessly.
Alan's Rear Bumper - Page 2
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