A winch bumper can be quite convenient if you frequently go on off-road excursions or trips with your vehicle. This gear comes in all shapes and is widely manufactured specifically for your vehicle’s model or make. However, a certain thrill comes with using something made by yourself, don’t you think?
Despite the rewarding aspect of a DIY project, making bumper for winches can be quite challenging. It takes a lot of work to build a winch bumper, including picking the right construction material, painting, and everything else in between.
To help you out, let’s take a look at how to build a winch bumper from scratch with step-by-step guidelines!
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Reasons for Building A Winch Bumper by Yourself
As the saying goes, “Do it yourself when you want it done right.” This phrase can be applied to these bumpers as well. There are a variety of reasons why someone might want to build a winch bumper by themselves, and we'll go over a few of them in this section.
Not Available for Your Vehicle
Despite the wide range of winch bumpers available online and offline, you might not always find the specific winch bumpers for your vehicle. Sometimes finding the right aftermarket winch bumper specific to your vehicle can be challenging.
For example, if you own older models of trucks or SUVs, then the odds of locating a winch bumper are minimal. So, the only option left in such cases is to make one by yourself!
It can be challenging to find a winch bumper if you have a budget. That said, even if you’re not looking for a cheaper alternative, most aftermarket winch bumpers tend to be pricier.
In addition, if you live in suburban or remote areas, the shipping cost of these can also cost a fortune! Overall, the expense of getting a winch bumper is not to be taken lightly!
When weighing all these factors, sometimes making a winch bumper by yourself can be a cheaper alternative!
You’ll Have Something to Show off!
Making something on your own definitely adds a cool factor to your vehicle. Not everyone can show off something that they made by themselves. Therefore, if you have the resources and means to build winch bumpers on your own, then why not just go for it!?
Sure, the process can be a challenge, but there is nothing more rewarding than looking at the final product! And to top it all off, you will be saving a few extra bucks as well as showing it off to your peers!
Making A Winch Bumper In 6 Steps
Now that we know why Offroaders would prefer to make their winch bumpers. Let’s look at how we can make them from scratch step by step. So, keep on reading!
Step 1: Unbolt And Remove The Old Winch Bumper
This may appear to be a straightforward task, but removing bumpers from vehicles of old models can be difficult, especially if your car has been exposed to a high-humidity climate for a prolonged period which can lead to rusting.
To tackle the rusting problem, you can use penetrating oil or WD-40 before the night removing the bumper. This will allow you to unbolt any rusted nuts quickly, efficiently, and without much trouble.
You can find the bolts of the bumpers inside the bumper covers, unbolt them with a ratchet easily, and you’re good to go!
Step 2: Take Measurements
This is probably the most important step of the entire process. Always double-check that you've measured everything correctly. It's also helpful to know the layout you want when building your winch bumper. Getting the measurements right is the first step to success in this case!
You might have a specific style of the bumper in your mind, but things tend to look better in your head than when brought to life. Therefore, use a piece of cardboard to make a mockup of the bumper.
Before removing the original bumper, cut out a 6x6 cardboard piece and place it where it used to be. Then outline the locations of the bolt holes on the template with a permanent marker.
Once that is done, place the cardboard on a large steel flat where you need to drill the holes and trace all the points and parts. From this steel, you will have the bumper bracket, which you need to attach to the frame. So, make sure to fasten it.
Step 4: Cutting & Welding
In this step, your winch bumper will start taking shape. All the flat pieces of steel you traced before need to be welded into tubes. Temporary tack weld the tube and modify if required for making adjustments. Then use a ratchet to rig up the winch after sport welding.
Also, you need to ensure not to weld on a specific spot for too long as it can end up creating a problem. Next, get the small tubes and cut them around 2 inches.
These small tubes will add extra support to the bumper and will be located between the winch. The top and bottom bumper sections will be made from these.
Remember, welding is an art and can also add strength to your bumper when done right. Therefore, if you are new to this, it’s better to let a professional do the welding for you.
Step 5: Painting
Now that you’re done with making the bumper, you need to paint it. Before that, clean the whole surface of the bumper with a mineral spirit and microfiber cloth.
Then proceed with two coats of paint primers for the best results. Finally, apply the paint. You should add a minimum of 3 layers of paint to get the best results!
Step 6: Finish And Install
Now that everything is ready get a buddy or two to hoist up the bumper to the bumper bracket of your vehicle.
Some vehicles have pre-drilled holes on their bumper frame; if yours doesn’t, you can always drill new ones. If you did everything up to mark, then you will have no issues with installing the bumper.
Making a winch bumper is not easy, but it’s not impossible either! If you follow these steps, you will likely get a great result when building one! Therefore, now that you know how to build a winch bumper, what are you waiting for? Get on with it, and good luck!