The Bumpers

Anyone who has leaned too hard on a stock Samurai bumper can tell you that it is little more than a large turn signal bracket. The metal will actually dent if you kick it! I have lived in El Paso for a little over 15 years now and I have had 3 vehicles "total out" on the bumper of my old dodge charger. I was looking for that kind of protection for my Zook!

Whether it is bumping into another bumper or even a rock waterfall, I won't have to worry about much more that retouching the satin black bumper with a little spray paint. I purchased the Crawler Front Bumper from Rocky Road Outfitters, but the rear bumper (though based on another Rocky Road creation) was designed on my computer and cut out on a C&C machine owned by a friend. I use lights commonly found on tractor trailers (so they are available at most truck stops...) because they are easy to replace and can be found almost anywhere. I also added a set of rock sliders to the ends of the bumper to protect the body a little. A little bit of gusseting goes a long way! The full description and installation article can be found at IZook. I have also built a number of different pieces to work with the flush mount 2 inch receiver on the back bumper, but I'll wait to get the pictures up before I go into detail.

Next comes the spare tire rack. First, I designed something that would hold a 33" tire and two fuel cans. After I built the main structure, I realized the two fuel cans would have to wait. Initially, I used a stock spare tire carrier that I welded to the rack frame. After doing a jig on the spare in the rocks one day, I realized this was not as strong as I wanted.  I looked at the spare differential just sitting there in the garage and got an idea. I had seen where others had used a spare front knuckle to hold the spare tire. I figured "That looks easy enough!". Two hours later, I had a spare tire, brake rotor, hub and bearings all in one neat package! It even spins around when the wind catches it right.

With the addition of a winch up front, it was time to replace the bumpers with something a little more substantial. I then installed Shrockworks bumpers in front and out back.

After meeting a tree - the tree lost.
After taking out a 6" thick tree.

With the Crawler in place.
A shot with the Crawler Bumper in place.
 Check out the install story at IZOOK!

New Hella Lights!
Another new addition - Lights!

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Home-brew rear bumper finally installed.

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New tire rack with complete hub and the ability to 'spin' at will.
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Here you can even see the spare brake rotor, it's there in case it is needed.
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