newbie needs a bumper

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Jun 20, 2003
I recently purchased a 97 (love it). Since I am fortunate enough to work off road 5 days a week the first thing I needed to do was to get the spare out of the bottom. I am now tired of it taking up space in the rig. I noticed an internal mount on a previous post but I think I would rather have it on the bumper. Slee's looks to be the best but cost the most. I'm leaning toward Kaymar. Is self install any problem? I talked to TLC who said they wire the lights into the harness, what about using the stock connector for a tow hitch (seems easier).
On another note... what is up with Toyota putting the catylitic convert. there with a under frame pipe ??? I remember my FJ40's cat was under the drivers floorboard (hot feet in the desert) it would heat and pressurize my fuel tank putting fumes into the cab. Does Slee's slider bracket offer any protection to the cat ?
I thinks that's enough for a first post. Great site, I recognize some names from the Acme Outfitters old board.
Thanks, HD
The Slee bumper is a gem and a very heavy duty unit. Mine got field tested in Moab this spring. The Kaymay looks nice, but sticks out further and has weak recovery points. The upside of the Kaymar is the built in hitch mount, although the slee lets you fit the factory hitch if desired. I also believe with the Kaymar you need to drill a bunch of holes in the frame cross member to mount. By the time you add the tire carrier to the Kaymar it isn't that much cheaper either. Remember in the end, the few hundred extra $ will mean nothing, but if you buy what you don't want, you'll always think about it.
There's an old saying: "Speed costs money, how fast do you want to go?"
That being said, if you think Christo's bumper is expensive, you are right. However, I challenge you to fabricate your own one-off piece and get it powder-coated, for less money. I have seen examples of both Kamar and Slee. The Slee is clearly superior. If you are considering a rear bar/tire mount, I suggest you get the "good" one to begin with.

&nbsp:Disclaimer: No affiliation, yadda, yadda, yadda............
Just impressed by his work. :)
Another old saying. "There is always enough money to do it twice, but never enough to do it right the first time".
Hi HooDoo and welcome to the 80s section here on ih8mud.

I went through a similar thought process about 6 months ago. My approach to building up the truck is to do it slowly (budget constraints), buy the best quality I can afford, and buy/build something one time.

I looked at the TJM, Kaymar, Slee, and custom. There are pros and cons to each. I ended up with the Slee rear bumper and tyre carrier. My somewhat biased recommendation would be to build Chris' internal tyre carrier as a temporary solution while you save some more $$$ to buy the Slee rear bumper.

BTW, the Slee bumper is designed to carry a 37" Swamper :D


Welcome. Yeah, rear bumpers cost big $$, but ...... of course mine has been under construction for almost 2 years now and it's almost finished. :'(

You could quickly and easily fab up something like what I have protecting my 97 cats.
Thanks all for the info. No doubt the Slee is the beefiest bumper. Congrats to Jim on getting the rig back.
Reply to Rick-Landtank: I must have been mistaken about drilling the holes in the crossmember. However I do remember spending all afternoon drilling holes with one of my friends installing his Kaymar but the holes might have been for the gas can carrier. I just remember it was a pain as Kaymar must use some hard thick steel. We dulled 2 cobalt drill bits.
Andrew, you are not mistaken. When you install the latch bracket (for the tire or gas carrier) on the bumper, you have to drill 4 holes into the bumper and tap them. Kinda goofy, since you need a bottom tap to do that because the rear crossmember is right behind the bumper. Most people just drill through both.
Well you have to open up two of the four holes in the crossmember but nothing in the frame. And I did space on the four latch bolts. There is no predrilled holes because you might want just the bumper or only one accessory which can go on either side. 2 bits you say......did you try forward? ::)

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