OEM swing out tire carrier install

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Jun 26, 2004
east coast Canada
I have it in my build thread but I figured I would create a dedicated thread to show the way I did it.

I hear lots of people say they want it but because you can’t easily get the inner bracing/mounting brackets they won’t do it.

I decided to go composite with my brackets. I used a combination of carbon fibre and fibreglass. I only use epoxy as polyester resin is s*** and it stinks way too much.

Epoxy is way stronger than polyester also. You can use polyester only if the fabrication is one piece done at the same time. In other words once polyester is cured and you attach more polyester to it by adding more cloth and resin then that joint is very poor. Epoxy on the other hand is far superior in this way.

It’s a pretty straight forward process actually. Some pics are self explanatory and the ones that aren’t I will give details.


The pic below shows the pieces after I cut my fabricated fibreglass board to shape.
The board is made up of epoxy and 10 layers of cloth. It gets laid up on a heavily waxed and buffed piece of sheet metal . The wax allows easy separation of the board after curing.


The pic above shows the 8 layers of carbon and epoxy laid up on the quarters where the carrier mounts. In this process I put down aluminum tape for protection then waxed. After curing it was laid on the carrier mounts and trimmed to pretty much the same dimensions.

The cut out pieces that will be bonded to the carbon using thick 5 minute epoxy shaped to a fillet so it’s a smooth radius corner. This ensures the next layers of fibreglass bonds completely without any air pockets. If there is no radius this would not be possible. 6 layers of cloth and epoxy on the inside are used to bond all 3 pieces together. It goes on the inside because if you put it on the outside the shape my not conform to the quarter Then 2 layers on the outsid.
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The approximate shape has been achieved. The hardest part to deal with is the upper bracket. It is very tight where it lives.

The D pillar is made up of outer, middle then inner. The middle is what the bracket is welded to. The inner D pillar is where the pocket for the jump seat seatbelt attaches. Very beefy design. I will be using long bolts that goes through my bracket then through holes I drilled in the middle D pillar. Then large area washers and lock nuts will hold it in place.
Essentially similar to it being welded to the middle D pillar. Originally I planned on a expanding structural adhesive. Cost and ability to do a thorough job stopped that concept.

The second picture shows the factory hole where a bolt would go through after it attaches the swingout as it’s pretty close to the outer D pillar. The second hole it the one I drilled.
I feel 2 through bolts will be adequate.

Last pic is looking up the hole in inner D pillar where the seatbelt recoil would live.





Up in the tight spot

The first pic is looking up with taillight removed.



Above pic points to the fastener holes that go through into the middle D pillar.

Below pic shows those holes, one is a factory hole where the factory fastener would go through after it goes into the factory bracket. The outer and middle D pillar are only separated by approx 1/2” in some areas. Hence the reason it’s hard to retrofit the OEM bracket if you have one.

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I am a stickler for details and doing it so it represents factory like installs whenever possible.

Nutserts are great for assistance vs welding on blind fasteners.

I wanted to add a larger bearing surface for the nutserts to distribute load and also to prevent pull through. I have experienced pull through with nutserts when installing it in composites.

Of course correct size washers are not available So I had to ream to fit some 1/2 thick AN SS washers.




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Some final shots




I did make a template for the fibreglass side pieces.

The carbon fibre no.

I may remove them in the fall and bring to work and get 3D scanned and see if they can be machined?

License plate carrier needed some love




And it’s finished. About 5 days of work, but I’m an anal S.O.B🤦‍♂️

It’s a bit daunting as you have to drill 18 holes to mount everything. Check, double check and triple check.

I have pretty competent fabrication skills, so anybody who doesn’t does not want to attempt this.

I am considering fabricating the mounts and drill pattern template. Just need to talk to some fellow faculty members at work. This will be a fall project just to investigate the possibility.

New tires also. Toyo M55’s




That looks great. Do I understand correctly that everything except for the mounts are OEM parts you were able to buy recently?
That looks great. Do I understand correctly that everything except for the mounts are OEM parts you were able to buy recently?
Correct, used of course

I lucked in at 300 Canadian, dirt cheap in US $$🤦‍♂️
Sure do like those 255’s. On the fence between those and 295’s. Never much cared for the 315’s I’ve got now, and they’re about done.
Sure do like those 255’s. On the fence between those and 295’s. Never much cared for the 315’s I’ve got now, and they’re about done.
The 255’s prevent wandering and nibbling of the wheel on the highway. It had 275/70/16 and going to the 255’s was an amazing improvement.

With the 255x4 it’s 1020 mm on the contact patch.
295x 4 it’s 1180 mm.

160 mm difference, a lot less rolling resistance = easier on everything IMOP.

315x4 it’s 1260-1020= 240, so your running 5 tires instead of 4 vs the 255.

That’s how my brain thinks anyways 🤦‍♂️
So a continuation.

I put 5500 miles on 80 this summer with mild off-roading. No I’ll effects on the 1/4 panels where it is bolted to.
A local fella here, in NS, a member of our local Land Cruiser club, wanted some mounting brackets.

This was my excuse to do a better job as I strive for constant improvements.

So I unbolted my swingout but it would not come off! Silly me used gasket maker when I put it on to stop any water leaks🤦‍♂️

Should have known better the rubber gasket I made would have been adequate.

After 40 minutes with a 3lb dead blow and wedges it came off😅

However I did do some minor damage to the attach area, hammer and dolly will fix it up.





What you see here are V2.0 of the brackets for mounting the swingout.

The top is very tight and limited space to work.
So I was happy with V2.0’s fit





So mold making time….this is the top bracket.

It needs a bit of touching up but it came out great.

I may go at the bottom bracket today, but I am needing a break from the polyester resin stink. I hate the s*** but it cures fast and is way cheaper than epoxy for this application plus the gelcoat is polyester so it’s just easier





I will let this sit for the day so it fully cures then sand with 4-600 wet grit to smooth and prepare for use.
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So, I’ll answer before someone asks😬

If the production of the first parts yield a good result, and I get a good gauge of time and cost of part production I may be selling these if there is demand.

I would like to put some out there to be tested in a more rigorous environment. That’s what I’m doing with the local guy.

Stand-by for future reports 🍻
Wow. That's quite a project.

Cool to see the process.

While you're making use of your mould making skills, I reckon a direct replacement for OEM fender flares would have quite a bit of demand ;)
Hmmm, I enjoy fabricating things. My understanding is there are the early flares, FJ80 and all FZJ80 flares.

So 2 different sets of flares, a total of 12 molds!

I have access to a set of FJ80 flares and I have my flares.

So you folks think there is a demand? But the ultimate question is how much will people pay for them?

Probably more demand for rears also?


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