Lower tailgate contacting rear bumper (1 Viewer)

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So after searching this forum for a while, I found nothing that addressed this issue. I have a '97 fzj80 that I bought just a few months ago from another forum member. It's a beautiful truck and has had a lot of good work done to it. However, the issue lies in opening my lower tailgate. It opens just fine but when it is lowered the tailgate contacts my Slee rear bumper. The Slee bumper is a great piece of gear but the teflon spacer blocks for the spare tire and ladder swing-outs rub/support my tailgate before the factory hinges are fully locked out. The way I see it, I have three options. 1.) Punch out/cut off the center rivet of the hinges and try to Jerry rig some kind of new joint that shortens the hinge and takes up the slack. 2.) Remove the hinge mounting screws on the body end, drill new holes just above the old and use rivnuts/nutserts. 3.) Remove the hinges entirely and replace them with custom length steel cables. If you're reading this and wondering "what exactly is he asking?" then let me clarify. I want to know if anyone else has this issue with their '80 and their rear bumper, specifically Slee. And if they did have the issue, how they solved it. Finally, I am open to ideas because, while I am handy with tools, I am no expert on vehicle modifications.
 
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As I said, no expert here, but I don't believe so. The bumper bolts on at various points and has quite hefty mounting hardware. I don't think there's any adjustment to be made with the bumper. And honestly I'm sure that would be the best idea even if it were possible because I would have to lower the entire unit away from the body to get it to clear. Seems like this would create an unsightly gap.
 

IanB

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You could try contacting SLEE as well, if anyone has come across this issue it would be them.

Can you post some pics? Does the tailgate sit flat when it contacts, or tilted up? If you sat on the tailgate you'd likely dent it, that would be worse than a gap in my mind.
 

IanB

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Ideally you would have enough clearance that 2 can sit on the tailgate without it contacting, I'm confident SLEE would have accounted for this in their design.
 
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Sorry for the sloppy posts. I'm still learning how to navigate the forum controls. That first pic is a close up of the area in contact. The second shows the slack in the hinges. The third shows the scratches/rubbing as a result.
 
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Ideally you would have enough clearance that 2 can sit on the tailgate without it contacting, I'm confident SLEE would have accounted for this in their design.

I agree that something seems odd. I just don't know what that something is. I don't have an issue with the bumper I just wish I could use my tailgate as it was designed to be used.
 
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look underneath where the bumper mounts. theres supposed to be spacers under there. when I get a chance ill go take pictures of mine... also look for rock damage under the bumper. it could be that something is just bent...
 
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20180719_092239.jpg
20180719_092258.jpg

No spacers that I can see. Perhaps that is the issue?
 
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Well that sucks...but I'm glad you pointed it out. Now I know what the issue is. Is the spacer just a chunk of plate steel or is there something else there?
 
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Well that sucks...but I'm glad you pointed it out. Now I know what the issue is. Is the spacer just a chunk of plate steel or is there something else there?
its just a chunk of plate steel with 2 holes and yeah, slee is hard to get ahold of sometimes...
 

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