Westcott Design hitch mount tire/cooler rack vs metal rear bumper pros/cons

Joined
Feb 10, 2017
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San Jose, California, USA
Greetings!

I'm curious if anyone has had experience with any Westcott Design hitch mount?
(Listed under the "Universal Hitch Mount Racks for Trucks")

They look more durable than the Wilco ones or other similar products sold on 4WheelParts. Compared to a full metal rear bumper, I can see that this one is less pricy (including saving on installation), more flexible (can be taken off when needed and keeps the truck original), but sacrifices some departure angle. Are there other aspects to consider when choosing between hitch mounted and full metal bumper?

Thanks!
 
Joined
Oct 21, 2018
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519
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Denver
I know nothing about that company (Westcott) and that specific product, but like the idea of only carrying the swing out rack when you need it. I have a 4x4Labs rear bumper (which I built for my LX470). It’s a commitment and compromise. Once done it’s very hard to go back to stock, and you have to get your swing outs out of the way every time you open the lower gate on your truck. You’re also carrying the weight of a significantly heavier bumper all the time, which does impact fuel economy. You correctly point out that the Westcott is going to impact your departure angle, and you’ll also have the plastic bumper surround hanging down to be careful of when off road. But if you have no intention of wheeling your ride hard, perhaps only doing forest service roads and the like, you’ll probably be fine. I’m building my vehicle for very remote driving, and want as few things to worry about as possible. The 4x4labs bumper greatly improves my departure, and is nearly bulletproof. I only carry my spare and can rack when I’m on a road trip, so save myself some of the hassle of living with swingouts. I’m into my rear bumper build for roughly the price of the Westcott product, but only if you don’t include my time and welding consumable.

A4E57245-A053-46FE-9460-8C82709DFA32.jpeg
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2017
Messages
204
Location
San Jose, California, USA
I know nothing about that company (Westcott) and that specific product, but like the idea of only carrying the swing out rack when you need it. I have a 4x4Labs rear bumper (which I built for my LX470). It’s a commitment and compromise. Once done it’s very hard to go back to stock, and you have to get your swing outs out of the way every time you open the lower gate on your truck. You’re also carrying the weight of a significantly heavier bumper all the time, which does impact fuel economy. You correctly point out that the Westcott is going to impact your departure angle, and you’ll also have the plastic bumper surround hanging down to be careful of when off road. But if you have no intention of wheeling your ride hard, perhaps only doing forest service roads and the like, you’ll probably be fine. I’m building my vehicle for very remote driving, and want as few things to worry about as possible. The 4x4labs bumper greatly improves my departure, and is nearly bulletproof. I only carry my spare and can rack when I’m on a road trip, so save myself some of the hassle of living with swingouts. I’m into my rear bumper build for roughly the price of the Westcott product, but only if you don’t include my time and welding consumable.

View attachment 2894476
Thanks for the insight! Yeah, the added weight and inconvenience of loading/unloading are also part of the consideration for people who don't do hardcore offroading. :D


Are this type of hitch-mount racks generally robust enough to withstand regular usage on bumpy service roads without causing rattling noise after say a couple years?
 
Joined
Oct 21, 2018
Messages
519
Location
Denver
From what I’ve seen Wilco products are well regarded and hold up to regular use. And Westcott talks about their anti wobble hitch insert, which is a good measure. They don’t talk much about the materials used in their construction though, apart from a mention of 1 3/4” tubing. I’d wonder what wall thickness, and what hinge and latch setups they’re using, as these are common failure points. Other brands of hitch receiver carriers don’t seem to be plentiful. But I’ve never really considered the option, beyond the one I built and soon decided to let go in favor of the bumper pictured above.
 
Joined
Oct 21, 2018
Messages
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There’s a guy up in Oregon who is selling a Westcott carrier, listed in the classifieds section under overland gear. you might contact him and see if he’ll share thoughts on why he’s going to a built bumper. Also, he shares his invoice. With shipping and a few add ons he’s above $2300. For Sale - Salem to Tacoma, Westcott Designs Universal Hitch Mount Tire Rack with Cooler & Work Table - https://forum.ih8mud.com/threads/salem-to-tacoma-westcott-designs-universal-hitch-mount-tire-rack-with-cooler-work-table.1274256/
 

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