Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Foothill Ranch, CA
Installing smittybilt 76743 SRC Classic Front Bumper
I chose this bumper because my 3.5” Rubicon Express lift and 37” tires were rubbing on my old Warn full width bumper and it was very reasonably priced.
My install took way longer than the quoted 1 hour. I’ll admit that I always take a long time installing anything. Then first thing to do was remove the Warn bumper and winch which took a while. The next thing I noticed was the stock canister that is mounted down there had to be re-mounted. This bumper nicely clears the canister but installation of the original Warn bumper required that I cut off one of the stock mounting tabs then reposition it with a Warn supplied mount. This wasn’t going to work with the SMITTYBILT so I put it back in the stock location and made a bracket to bridge where I cut the stock tab off, from the canister to the side of the winch mounting plate. See included picture.
After cutting of the areas at each end of the frame cross member that hang down and interfere with the new installation ( per the instructions) I test fit the bumper and was disappointed that it wasn’t fitting in contact with the bumper mounts. The bottom of the front bumper mounts was spaced away from the frame with the bottom of the bumper against the frame cross member. I didn’t want to just tighten everything because it would have but everything under a ton of stress. After struggling to figure out a solution I decided to slot the frame holes so that the upper mounts seat properly and allow the bottom of the bumper to fit properly against the frame rail. This required the holes to be slotted down, probably at least a quarter inch. After doing that the bumper fit great. Actually slotting those holes was a major pain! I started with a air powered grinder and carbide burr. Perhaps it was my grinder but the bit kept grabbing and spinning around the hole, not cutting. I finally mounted the burr in a drill motor which was slow but easier to control. I probably spent at least an hour slotting those holes.
The winch holes lined up perfectly with my Warn Zeon winch but the two rear holes were EXTREMELY difficult to get cinched down and tightened. I used a crows foot and ratchet tightening 1 click at a time. I tried a couple of universals I had but there is very limited access to the rear screws. IT WOULD BE REALLY NICE IF SMITTYBILT PROVIDED SOME ACCES HOLES TO MAKE THIS EASIER! In fact I finished the install today and I barely tightened those rear bolts so I need to go find a low profile 5/8 socket to get in there and finish tighten them.
The bumper looks good. Hopefully it has cured my rubbing issues.