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Discussion Starter #1
Haven't been here for a while. I have 2 Jeeps, a 2006LJR and a 2017 JKUR. I have the JK set up to tow behind my Motorhome. I am in the process of getting the LJ ready as well.

I use the Ready Brute Elite hitch set up which uses a cable to activate the Jeep brakes. After towing the JK a couple thousand miles I have decided it works pretty darn good.

It is best to install the cable on the Jeep as close as possible on the bumper. I have a Rokman bumper on the LJ. Directly behind the bumper is that round front cross member. It's pretty thin wall stuff. I am thinking of drilling a hole through it to run the cable in. Probably a 1/2" hole. This way there will be no really sharp turns with the cable.



I know that tube is structural but I doubt a hole through it will weaken anything.



Thoughts?
 

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If you're concerned with strength, I would buy a short section of steel tubing that the cable could go through, drill the cross member and weld that tubing in to regain the strength. That cross member is a significant structural member on a TJ/LJ frame, but reinforcing the hole with tubing should keep it strong. Also, you won't be able to run a Currie sway bar if you do this as their sway bar goes through that cross member.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
If you're concerned with strength, I would buy a short section of steel tubing that the cable could go through, drill the cross member and weld that tubing in to regain the strength. That cross member is a significant structural member on a TJ/LJ frame, but reinforcing the hole with tubing should keep it strong. Also, you won't be able to run a Currie sway bar if you do this as their sway bar goes through that cross member.

Thanks, that is what I am thinking. It looks like an important cross member, but strength wise I's say it doesn't add a lot. Pretty thin tubing. I don't even think it's 1/8" thick. I have heard it serves as a point of alignment during the construction of the frame. Hypothetically you could weld the front bumper down and remove that tube altogether. Not that anyone would. It does serve as the front body mount.



I do intend to run a piece of tubing in and welding up the ends if this idea works out. I'll try and post up some pics if I get to this job in the next year or so. I'm so dang busy with this and that anymore. Should of never retired.
 

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not sure why you done tun the wires down one of the tow arms, then to the jeep. Thinking the drivers side arm then right to the brakes.

Again, not sure why it needs to be in the middle, even if that is where you are drilling the hole. Is there also a hole in the bumper for the wires to go through.

Not totally picturing where the wiring is going to and from.

The tube, as I have read, is part of the torsional stiffness of the frame. agreed that a small hole may not be a big issue, I do like the reinforcing idea from mouse. but not sure where any why go through it. Over/under the tube works and isn't that much farther for wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
not sure why you done tun the wires down one of the tow arms, then to the jeep. Thinking the drivers side arm then right to the brakes.

Again, not sure why it needs to be in the middle, even if that is where you are drilling the hole. Is there also a hole in the bumper for the wires to go through.

Not totally picturing where the wiring is going to and from.

The tube, as I have read, is part of the torsional stiffness of the frame. agreed that a small hole may not be a big issue, I do like the reinforcing idea from mouse. but not sure where any why go through it. Over/under the tube works and isn't that much farther for wiring.

Apples/Oranges.

I hook up my wiring via a 4 prong connection on the bumper which goes to a coiled 7 pin to 4 pin cord to the Motorhome. That controls my turn signals/tail lamps/"extra" brake lamps. I drill a hole in the tail lamp housing and run a separate bulb that the Motorhome operates. The only wire on the Jeep I tap into is the brake lamp switch at the brake petal to energize my Demco Coachlink which has a wireless display on the Motorhome dash to let me know the brakes are engaging. Hence the dual brake lights, press the brake on the Motorhome the auxiliary bulb lights up. When the brakes are applied to the Jeep a second brake light comes on.



All that has nothing to do with the hole in the cross member. That is for the brake cable. Not a electric cable. It is best to put this as close to center as possible. The brake cable housing is maybe 5/16"-3/8" in diameter. The break away cable can be mounted on the side just fine.



https://www.youtube.com/redirect?redir_token=Sjc-u35nPqr8-odnusc-wuwqvEZ8MTU2ODUwMTM1OUAxNTY4NDE0OTU5&event=video_description&v=P9RBBO_gcqU&q=http://www.readybrake.com


Short video




I have the 8,000 lb Elite tow bar. Been using it on our 2017 JKUR for a while and it works flawless.

No tapping into the sort of complex Jeep system, no worries of warranty issues. No diodes etc. I like simple.
My set-up is modified for the Jeeps. I don't like or trust that cable hanging out in front. Rock can destroy that real easy. On the JK I have a Rock Hard aluminum bumper which I designed a fold down license plate for. I cut out the bumper and behind the plate the cable and electrical connection lives. I'm doing similar on the LJR and Rokman bumper. No folding lic plate though. I moved the plate (required in CA) up over the winch fair lead. I'll use a simple metal plate to cover the hole where the cable and connector will live. I'll try and get photos up soon.
 

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good ole Sam and Dave still telling us how ti works and installing the parts that make things go and stop.

I see now what you are doing. Interesting way to apply the vehicle service brakes, cool.

again, I am sure you could go through the tube. I would put a 3/4OD .1 wall or so through it and then your cable through that. Something easy to weld and provide some structure back in.
I guess with this system it would be best to have the cable about level with the tow/brake adapter. could make the actual decision for you.

Thinking about what is behind the tube to get to through the engine compartment to the brake pedal area. Thats some fun routing as well.


feels like my trailer is so much easier now. But I get towing a trailer behind a RV has its own issues.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
The tube, as I have read, is part of the torsional stiffness of the frame. agreed that a small hole may not be a big issue, I do like the reinforcing idea from mouse. .
If it is structural, which it is, it sure is a weak sister. Very thin wall stuff that has indentations for the steering box. I am sure the integrity of the structure is meant to keep frame flex at the steering box at a minimum. A 3/8"-1/2" hole in the center won't jeopardize it's function.




Over/under the tube works and isn't that much farther for wiring.

It is best to avoid any sharp turns with the cable for obvious reasons. Over the top may be possible. I will try that first. On the bottom will be begging for a rock to smash the cable.
 

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fur under, just a quick piece of angle over the cable.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
good ole Sam and Dave still telling us how ti works and installing the parts that make things go and stop.

I see now what you are doing. Interesting way to apply the vehicle service brakes, cool.

again, I am sure you could go through the tube. I would put a 3/4OD .1 wall or so through it and then your cable through that. Something easy to weld and provide some structure back in.
I guess with this system it would be best to have the cable about level with the tow/brake adapter. could make the actual decision for you.

Thinking about what is behind the tube to get to through the engine compartment to the brake pedal area. Thats some fun routing as well.


feels like my trailer is so much easier now. But I get towing a trailer behind a RV has its own issues.

In the center behind the tube is a the front tub mount which is welded to the tube.



LOL, on this LJ getting the cable routed will be duck soup. It was difficult getting a good shot on the JK. On that JK you can toss $15 worth of dime under the hood and only $3.80 will make it to the floor. Gonna get at least $12.60 back on the LJ.


And yes, I love this hitch. If you ever get one install a 1/4" turnbuckle on the cable to get it adjusted just right. Only complaints I have with it are: It can be noisy. Clank-Clank in stop and go. And it is a lot more bulky than most hitches. It doesn't just fold up nice and compact like many others do.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
FYI. One thing I discovered on the NSA Ready Brute Elite hitch is they have no adapters to connect the hitch to aftermarket bumper D rings. I was going to just build my own but decided on getting the Warrior Products adapter which I think may work as is or can be modified to work pretty easy.



https://www.amazon.com/Warrior-Products-867-D-Ring-Adapter/dp/B004JATZP8/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=Warrior+Products+867&qid=1568478949&s=automotive&sr=1-3


NSA is very soon coming out with a newer version of the Ready Brute hitch and they also announced they will soon have available proper mounts for off road bumpers. On the JK I have the Rock Hard aluminum front bumper which uses very well built steel adapters that bolt to the Jeep frame.



not my JK but I have this set up.




https://proxy.duckduckgo.com/iu/?u=http://rvtechmag.com/articlepics/57_wrangler_image-14.jpg&f=1&nofb=1
 

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Working on the LJ today I checked clearance between the bumper and tube.

There is about 1/2 inch between the bottom on the plate and the top of the tube. May be all the room you need
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Working on the LJ today I checked clearance between the bumper and tube.

There is about 1/2 inch between the bottom on the plate and the top of the tube. May be all the room you need



I'll have to check mine. That Rokman bumper almost sits on the tube.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No room to go over the top. And the cable could rub against the cross over brake line. But it’ll go under the tube fine and with proper use of zip ties the odds of it getting hit is slim. The cable and 4 pin electrical connector will live in the hole. A 3/16” metal plate with 4 5/16” button heads will go on when I’m not towing it.
Thanks for advice etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I know it’d be a simpler job if I pulled the bumper. I may still do that. At least now with the hole I can get at the bolts holding the winch! Before you had to lift the heavy bumper and winch to get it off.
 
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