New Rear Bumper

I have begun what promises to be the first of many modification to my truck.  This latest build will allow me to pull a trailer with my bikes as well as look tremendously better than the piece of rust it is replacing.

When I bought my truck, the class III receiver was all but rusted through and I took it off immediately so that I wasn’t tempted to test its remaining strength.  The bumpers, both front and rear, are rusting from the underside out and before winter I had painted them to slow the corrosive progress.  Come Spring I checked on them and sure enough, the paint helped little.  With the idea to eventually get a trailer for the bikes, I set to work a couple weeks ago on a new rear bumper since I couldn’t find any that I really liked.  The front I will buy from All-Pro Off Road.

I must give credit for the design to Box Rocket on the TacomaWorld forums.  His original bumper that he built 4 years ago was my inspiration and I would have ordered one from him if he was currently making them.  So I found a local manufacturing company and bought some steel off them and set to work.  I picked up a 3×5 square tube, some 1/4″ flat stock, 1″ square tubing, and a hitch receiver from Harbor Freight.  I cut out the pieces after measuring and remeasuring more than I wanted to count.


I created gussets out of the scrape cuts and tacked up the brackets for initial fitment.


With everything in the right place, the remaining pieces were cut out to close it all up and I drove it down the road to a custom welder to finish it. My home MIG just couldn’t penetrate the 1/4″ plate enough, and with a piece that will have a lot of weight riding on it (literally), it needed to be done right.


I went to work with a grinder and flap disc to clean it all up and prep it for paint. Note that the gussets from the bumper to the bracket arms are too large and I did need to cut them each down three inches so that the frame could clear.


I painted and waited for a week so that the paint could get an initial cure. I used VHT Wheel Paint Satin Black and I highly recommend it. I was going to go with VHT Roll Cage and Chassis paint, but all they had was Gloss Black. I’m not sure there is much of a difference between the two, but I don’t think you can go wrong with either. I got home tonight and installed the new bumper. I also made a license plate bracket using a receiver and a piece of tin. I will wire up a license plate light for it this week.


With the license plate “hitch”.

And with a proper hitch.

More mods to come!

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