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Adding 3 Front Receiver Hitches for a hang glider rack?

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by Cadmus, May 25, 2016.

  1. May 25, 2016 at 5:54 AM
    #1
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    I need to put a front hang glider rack on my 2004, 4door, TRD-OR sr5 (chrome bumper). These are simply a bar above the bumper on the same plane as the roof rack and whatever rack I invent for over the bed or rear bumper. This rack is also used to bring lumber and 20' sticks of metal home. Honestly i have not flown since the baby was born but "glider rack" is shorter than "lumber and metal rack". The glider rack needs to be attached at 2 points, ideally on the far lateral sides of the bumper like F F. D D or E E would be fine too. Centered front receiver hitches that are "hidden" have been posted on this site putting them at point B on this pic. Sometimes recessed. I need a center hitch for a removable winch &/or bike rack. I do not want to install a normal hitch that ends up at C or below. G C G is just asking to get banged up on rocks, i want to keep my approach angle and clearance.

    Bumper Planning G Cropped IMGP3253_noplate.jpg

    The plan was to buy a mount like this
    http://www.autoanything.com/towing/curt-front-mount-trailer-hitches?vehicleid=1836264
    buy 2 "everything from china" receivers like this
    http://www.harborfreight.com/1-1-4-quarter-inch-to-2-inch-hitch-adapter-65023.html
    weld them to the side plates of the front mount
    install it upside down assuming they clear the radiator.
    Ideally located at the E B E locations with minimal plastic cutting. I do not have dimensions. I presume they will end up at D A D with lots of plastic cutting or in the chrome bumber. I do not want to cut the chrome, that is just silly.
    If at D A D, when i find time, i might remove the plastic and add a square tube below the receivers to replace the plastic.

    The alternative/expensive plan was to fabricate or buy a set (front+back) of plate or pipe bumpers with a receiver hitch and weld 2 attachments for the glider rack. I am very reluctant to add weight. I am already <16mpg. My experience with heavy plate bumpers is they compromise performance at high speeds, but that is a small sample size.

    ?s

    1- A pet peeve is that this truck lacks locations for a hi-lift jack. If I have receivers at F F those can likely be used to lift the truck assuming I can gusset it or reinforce it somehow. But what about E E? Is that far enough off center?

    2-How would you brace a receiver hitch at the F F location? enough to lift the truck with a jack?

    3-What existing front receiver hitch products can people recommend to achieve the A or B location?... or anything above C. Yes, i could weld this up but I would rather bolt on an existing product as i have too many projects.

    4-I would hate to loose the chrome... but if someone has suggestions for easy to make pipe or plate bumpers (front + back) OR affordable prefabbed ones I am all ears. It would be easy to then weld attachments for the rack and hi-lift would be usable. Assuming it is not huge and doesnt add lots of windage.
     
    ronoc likes this.
  2. May 25, 2016 at 9:38 AM
    #2
    devinzz1

    devinzz1 Well-Known Member

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    Well this is different.
     
  3. May 25, 2016 at 9:48 AM
    #3
    devinzz1

    devinzz1 Well-Known Member

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  4. May 25, 2016 at 9:50 AM
    #4
    Indy

    Indy Master of all I survey.

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    1. Buy a trailer.
    2. live a happy life.

    But on to the nitty gritty. Firstly, hilift's are hillbilly crap and most serious off roaders would never use them. Having said that, I can lift any vehicle pretty much anywhere to change a tire. It's just going to cause a lot of damage to do it. It's up to me to decide if it's a worthwhile trade-off. There's pretty much 0 way to brace the outer edges of a bumper without adding a serious amount of weight and eating up a whole lot of room where the tire is supposed to be. Physics says no. You lift by the frame or a direct attachment to it.

    Unless your glider has some serious weight to it, using multiple receiver hitches to carry it is a bit overkill, and extra weight to go with it. I can't imagine there isn't a simpler solution that will fit your needs.
     
  5. May 25, 2016 at 10:46 AM
    #5
    devinzz1

    devinzz1 Well-Known Member

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    i disagree with your hilift statement.
     
  6. May 26, 2016 at 12:16 PM
    #6
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    Thanks for the responses.


    I had one like that (single hitch medial location). It had play despite shims and turnbuckles. Most the damage to gliders happens when you are driving. bolts, pins, pipe ends eat into the dacron with each mile. Vibrations and rocking from road and windage. The more stable the better. My goal is NO PLAY. Obvious physics should suggest why 2 points of contact, as lateral as possible, is ideal. My subaru had a location analogous to the F F and it was ideal.
    Also, when you are the shuttle at a busy site you sometimes end up with 8 to 14 gliders on the truck when people park at the landing zone. That gets heavy and wider frames let you do this more easily. Wide means more leverage. WAY more heavy is the 20 foot long 1' diameter PVC tube that I keep on my truck for weeks at a time. It is where the glider lives on long trips. I typically locate it on the passenger side, so a single hitch located medially is no good. As i said above, i use this rack to bring home metal (that is always sold in 20' lengths) and lumber. Those are very heavy. Lastly, as i said above, i can not have one hitch in the front if i need to carry a glider rack AND a bike rack and a hitch mounted winch.

    This is not abnormal:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  7. May 26, 2016 at 12:20 PM
    #7
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    Trailers will only solve the metal and lumber hauling issue. Glider launch sites, and the climbing and camping sites i visit are very narrow, very steep and bumpy. It is maybe possible to get a trailer up but it would be rude to other users and in many cases unsafe.

    I drive a gen 1 partly to stay narrow enough to fit on jeep trails. We have roads here in Colorado the width of a burro. A trailer is not going to happen.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  8. May 26, 2016 at 12:34 PM
    #8
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    I can get unstuck or change a tire with a bottle jack.... assuming i am not in 1' of mud or water.... and i might need a jack stand and some lumber because bottle jacks and scissor jacks have limited travel.... but yeah I did it a bunch of times. Often i had to crawl into unsafe situations, brace the jack with lumber or rocks and when it was over i was covered in mud. If the vehicle can accept it a hi-lift is worth carrying.

    I dislike hi-lifts because they are big and bulky and often used as a status symbol.
    I am not a serious off-roader. I am just a climber/glider pilot/back-country skier who lives in the mountains. So, i understand why a person who seeks out rough roads would want a hi-lift.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  9. May 26, 2016 at 12:48 PM
    #9
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    Sad to say i might be forking out the big bucks for a set of bumpers. I would rather buy a whitewater raft for the fam with that money. The hitches is cheaper. Any ideas folks?

    (EDIT: no winch plate needed a front receiver is. pipe is fine if it saves on mass. attachment of hang glider rack can be something other than a hitch receiver welded to the opt or side of a bumper.)
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2016
  10. May 26, 2016 at 2:26 PM
    #10
    devinzz1

    devinzz1 Well-Known Member

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    a plate bumper would give you loads of options to weld on an attachment point where ever you wanted . To get them where you want with factory bumper its possible but it would look funny and be alot harder to fit up behind the valence.
     
  11. Jun 18, 2016 at 1:19 PM
    #11
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    i spent some time trying to simply make a bomber plate above the chrome, replacing plastic part 52119A. then weld a center hitch on top. whatever i need for the hang glider rack. that would be nice looking and lighter than a full on hardcore bumper.

    Summer is burning. I think i just have to buy a premade bumper with a front hitch and no winch space. What one is the lightest but is still made of steel? (or aluminum but affordable) thanks.

    520658B.jpg

     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2016
  12. Jun 22, 2016 at 8:50 AM
    #12
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    My truck came with LT365 75r16 tires. so stock or a little bigger. Before the toytec lift (not even half of the full extension) i think they rubbed a little. Not at all now. What are the biggest tire one can put on without a solid axial beefing-up?

    If i go with that level of bigger tire when my coppers wear out is it ever the chrome (5211E above ) that gets in the way? or is it just the black plastic below (53911)? I feel all my needs could be met my simple welding a 2"x6" rectangular steel tube below the OEM chrome part.

    Plan:
    -Cut off 12131A just medial of the intersection with the frame.
    -remove parts associated with the plastic bumper and leave the ones on the chrome.
    -Use 2"x1" solid steel stock bolted to the inside of the fame and extending outward to recovery points.
    -welding 12131A back in place to the 2"x1" braces now bolted to the frame.
    -weld a 2"x 6" rectangular steel tube above the 2"x1" sold braces this should make it flush with the bottom of 52111E
    -gusset it to the braces
    -add hi-lift points near the braces, a 2" hitch just below the 2x6 tube and weld 2 points of attachment for the glider/lumber rack. (either use hitches or other vertical male-female attachments)
    -MacGyver some turn signal lights. Who the hell put the turn signals down there anyways? did the engineer forget about turn signals and then decide to convert the fog lamps to turn signals the day before production? WTF?

    I think this will be lighter and less work than welding up a DIY plate bumper that might cost ~$400 after freight.
    Even keeping the OEM chrome, it might look like shit, but...
     
  13. Jun 22, 2016 at 8:59 AM
    #13
    FirstGen Jer

    FirstGen Jer Well-Known Member

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    Hahaha....:rofl::rofl::rofl:. to each there own I guess. But I disagree.
     
  14. Jun 22, 2016 at 12:37 PM
    #14
    pray4surf

    pray4surf Well-Known Member

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    Why not just go with a std contractor's bed rack? Would love to hang glide again, dad (RIP) and I built our own rogallos back in the 70's and flew all around the southern california coast. Here's my dad circa 1975
    Dad%20Hanggliding_zpsugwrhez7_ec833efe521542109bee25a9147d0f7095cbb4b6.jpg
    Sorry to go off topic
     
  15. Jun 22, 2016 at 2:17 PM
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    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    So cal in the 70's was where it ALL started. Great photo. Thanks for sharing.

    No. too permanent. I want something small that i can take off and put on alone. And I need it to not interfere with whatever I have in the bed. (popup camper, soft top toper, large tall items)
     
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  16. Jun 22, 2016 at 2:19 PM
    #16
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    I agree. They are very useful for many reasons.
     
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  17. Jun 23, 2016 at 7:17 AM
    #17
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    Still unsure if this will reduce air flow to the radiator. It will have a little gap because of the lower arc removed from 52111E. And the bottom 6" of the plastic bumper will be gone.

    Also, trying to determine the needed dimensions of the bracket that would connect the frame to the 2x6. If i want it to become a recovery point or a lift point for the jack what are the minimum dinentions to use? can i bolt inside the frame channel or must it be outside. if outside i have to move the radiator or the brackets supporting 52111E? Any suggestions or guesses are appreciated.


    As much as straight 2x6 looks is great on a old land cruiser
    Restored-FJ40-Land-Cruiser.jpg
    I think i might give curve to my 2x6 cutting Vs in the aft side and welding um together to approximate the existing curve of the bumper.
    |‾V‾‾‾‾V‾‾‾‾‾‾‾‾V‾‾‾‾V‾|
    Debating if i try to cut that V with a cutting blade in an angle grinder or if i rig up a jug for my band saw
    [​IMG]
     
  18. Jun 23, 2016 at 7:18 AM
    #18
    Cadmus

    Cadmus [OP] Un-Known Member

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    I sent many emails to companies offering plate or tube bumper kits ≤$300 asking if they can add a receiver hitch. Most looked too heavy. No responses yet. Ideally i would have sliders and a real that match. Open to suggestions but i can likely only afford a weld it yourself kit.
     
  19. Jun 23, 2016 at 8:15 AM
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    pray4surf

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  20. Jun 23, 2016 at 8:23 AM
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    slander

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    Disagree
    Hi lifts arent for tire changing, its a multi tool for getting you unstuck. I have had to jack the truck all the way up and winch, drive or push it off the jack to get unstuck or over objects. Using a hi lift to change a tire is more newbieish than hick since they dont know how fast that thing can kill you if you arent paying attention.

    Get a tube bumper and weld your attachments for the rack to that and be done with it.
     
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