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I'm installing a Smittybuilt light bar on a stock bumper

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As the title says, I'm installing a Smittybuilt light bar on my stock front bumper. It's not a bolt on ordeal, as the light bar was made to bolt onto a Smittybuilt bumper. That means the mounting plates are way too big, but the nice thing is that the mounting plates are made to match the curve of the factory bumper just as the Smittybuilt one does. I have it clamped to the bumper right now to get placement right and I'll be adding two support bars to the lower edge of the bumper to keep it from flopping on top of the stock bumper. I just need to drill holes for the light bar mounting and then weld in the support bars which go down to two bolt on tabs I made into existing holes on the bottom of the bumper. I'll update and add pics as this build progresses.IMG_20200209_162805243.jpg.5ff40b286fbfa4e665cd3b4c224ffffe.jpgIMG_20200210_162639093.jpg.917a75cf62b1183c02be962ad2af5025.jpgIMG_20200210_162647081.jpg.443e509acca46d9eab1f4eaa6a6c961c.jpgIMG_20200210_162703792.jpg.7be11b1aec660c1476bd10f165c959f1.jpgIMG_20200210_165915559_HDR.jpg.d9b0b0f2a98cd3ce2ddc99a419b84398.jpg

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I got the mounting plates trimmed and the holes drilled in the bumper today. Next step is to weld the support bars on. Then I need to decide on paint color. I'm thinking bright red. The long term plans for the whole truck is a white, black, and red theme. I already have red tailgate letters and red backed emblems to put on it after paint. And I have red bullet lug nuts on the black wheels. Anyway, here are the latest pics.





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I finished the welding on the bar supports and primed all the bare metal parts and sprayed the whole thing with Rust-Oleum bedliner. I mostly did that because of the texture paint on the Smittybuilt bar not matching the smooth support bars, so I wanted to even it all out. I'm still considering going over the bedliner with red paint and I set up a test piece to check and make sure there won't be any issues between the different coatings. I hope to have it installed Saturday. Here's a couple pics until then.




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I've decided against the red right now. The red I put over the bedliner on my test sample wasn't fully curing, it was staying a little sticky. It will still look good. I'll just have to see what I can do to incorporate some red accents later. I'll have more pics after it's installed!

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3 hours ago, dasbulliwagen said:

I didn't have enough time today to finish the bumper install. But I did get the front hitch installed, and the lower valance and support brackets. Here's pics of the progress.




SIdebar question here:   The brackets you are using to lower the front sway bar mounts to the chassis I assume are a commercial item you installed.  Who made them?


I ask because when I was looking for those for my MJ, the ones I saw did not have enough of an "offset" to shift the mount location far enough forward to keep my extended sway bar links vertical when the tails of the sway bar were in their proper (horizontal) position.  Because of this, I ended up making my own which was a big PITA.  


Just curious.

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I got them on Amazon. They are made by Rubicon Express PN RE9921.


I have extended, adjustable sway bar links, but even with them adjusted all the way out, when the truck is lifted the sway bar was contacting the bottom of my radiator (2.5L). I tried making some spacers myself but I didn't take into account the angle of the frame rails, so it obviously didn't work out. Then I saw someone on here had some installed and I searched them up and bought a set. They work perfectly.

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I finally got time to install the bumper today. For some reason I'm a little let down. It looks so much bigger off the truck, but installed, it just seems so small. Maybe I would like it better if it was red, but time will tell. It isn't going anywhere either way. Next step is the set of Hella lights I've had sitting around for 2-3 years. I'm wanting to convert them to LED at some point as well. Anyways here are the pics.





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20 hours ago, Pete M said:

so when does it get lights?


I pulled one of the lights out of the box to check it out and see how they mount. I set it on my jacket for a soft place to sit. Then close to the end of the day at work I decided I was going to pull the truck in to mount the lights. Not thinking at all, just grabbed my jacket to head outside forgetting the light was on it, and the light fell to the floor and busted the lense. I am so mad at myself for doing that. I've had those lights waiting to be installed for 2 1/2 years. And they've been fine this whole time. They are Hella 500 Black Magic lights, and Hella doesn't sell replacement lenses. I found some used ones a couple hours away, but it's almost cheaper to buy a whole new set or to go in another direction. I'm researching that now. Do I get another set of Black Magic, a cheaper set of regular Hellas, or some rectangular ones that might go better with the Waggy front end, or some sort of LED bar or setup? A 20 inch bar would fit perfect on top of the light bar, but I'm not sure that's what I want or not. I'll come up with something. And I'll post when I get there. 

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Here is a mock-up of what it would look like in a couple different ways if I keep to the round style Hellas. One with them on top, one with them mounted underneath, two different color covers, and then the busted light. I think I am going to stay away from the LED light bars. I like the old school look better.







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