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Undercover Winch Mount Install

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by g34rh34d, Jul 7, 2012.

  1. Jul 7, 2012 at 8:58 AM
    #1
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Colorado
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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    So yesterday I finally got around to installing my Undercover Winch Mount System (UCWMS).. In all, I am very pleased by the outcome of the install.

    The Installation took me most the day because I wanted to take my time and take a lot of pictures. Plus, I chose to use the Harbor Freight Tools 12000 Lb Winch. I know; there are a lot of people who think this is not a "quality Winch" but for the amount of use I will give it, It was fine for my application. I chose this winch because of the article I read in Off Road.com.

    You may ask why the 12000 vs. the 9000? Well, the reality is that the two winches are exactly the same physical size and at the time of my purchase, the 12000 lb winch was on sale for $299.00 vs. the $369.00 the 9000 lb winch was. Just as a precaution, I added the 2 Year warranty for $49.00.

    As part of the install, and in the interest of reducing weight, I purchased the Smittybilt 10000 lb Synthetic Winch rope from 4 wheel Parts Wholesalers. This came with a free Aluminum Fairlead.

    Like I said, I took my time, and tried to capture different pictures and picture angles as I went along with the install. I would love to post all the pictures here, but the Reality is I don't think I can upload that many pictures to the site. So I grabbed a few of the key steps as I went along with the install.

    In general, I am kind of a stickler for detail, and one of the negatives I had with the Badlands winch was this cheesy thermal circuit breaker (CB) arrangement they have. In the instructions, they recommend that you attach the big clunky 3 CB assembly directly to the Positive post on the Battery. Well, I chose to remote mount it to the top of the Fuse Panel Box. So I had some heavy Gauge wire and I made a short jumper from the Battery Post to the CB arrangement. Plus I went a little overkill on securing the wiring and routing it ensuring good service loops and strain relief. I attached the ground wire to the factory Body attachment point.

    When I was done with everything I tested the winch and all worked perfectly! The nice part about the install of the solenoid box was that the hole spacing worked with the factory bracket mounting locations which positions the Solenoid box perfectly in the grill location. I did have to modify the UCWMS Solenoid bracket by drilling two holes in order to get access to the Solenoid cover screws.

    There were a couple of areas that I wasn't sure how to address. The instructions mention removing the factory metal bumper attachment points from the aluminum bumper. It mentions to reuse them with the new UCWMS assembly, however I wasn't sure where they go quite yet. So I will go back and address that later. For now I just attached the inner fender well plastic to the bumper cover with a couple 1/4 - 20 Bolts and fender washers. It seems secure enough for now.

    Then there were the two remaining tabs on the lower side of the bumper cover that attached to the factory aluminum bumper extensions. I'm not sure what to do with these yet. Immediately I have an inclination to just cut them off, but then I thought I may make a couple of small "L" brackets drill and attach them to the UCWMS gussets to help maintain a relatively factory install.

    I think that's about it. I sent a couple of Zip Files To Brian of UCWMS and hopefully he can use them in his website for another look at the install. I will reply with some pictures of the install in the thread.

    What's Next?? My next big project is to do the 3" leveling kit from Toytec. More to come...

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  2. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:00 AM
    #2
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    More pictures...

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  3. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:09 AM
    #3
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    Another set of pictures....

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  4. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:13 AM
    #4
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    Continuing with more pictures....

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  5. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:18 AM
    #5
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    I know by now you are probably tired of the pictures, but I am a visual person, so here we go.. more to come!

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  6. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:22 AM
    #6
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    Getting closer to the finished product!

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  7. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:25 AM
    #7
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    Almost done...

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  8. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:28 AM
    #8
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    The completed wiring...

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  9. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:30 AM
    #9
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    I hope this gave people a little more to look at other than the typical "before and after" look at the front bumper.. ;-)

    Let me know what you think, or if you have some questions on your install, maybe these can help answer some of them.

    Cheers!
     
  10. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:35 AM
    #10
    Ugly Betty

    Ugly Betty Well-Known Member

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    85 extra cab on propane
    1985 ex cab, 92 toyota pickup, 95 4runner
    :taco:very nice
     
  11. Jul 7, 2012 at 9:39 AM
    #11
    Front sight

    Front sight Well-Known Member

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    Great job, it looks great, really clean. I might have missed it in the pics, but where are the controls for it mounted and can they be relocated to inside the cab?
     
  12. Jul 7, 2012 at 4:11 PM
    #12
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    The controls are located in the typical location solenoid behind the grill, and on the radiator support. there is a hand held (cabled) remote on a 10-12 foot cable. I need to figure out the wires inside the solenoid box, but I'm sure once I did that I could figure out how to wire up a DPDT rocker switch. That may be a future project..

    Thanks!
     
  13. Jul 7, 2012 at 10:13 PM
    #13
    Shaggs

    Shaggs Well-Known Member

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    Very nice... considered the badlands this week as there was a 25% off coupon for the 4th and I have actually only heard good things on these winches
     
  14. Jul 7, 2012 at 10:32 PM
    #14
    offroadwonder

    offroadwonder Well-Known Member

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    Jared
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    Chopped mud-flaps (yup, I'm hardcore)
    I am a big fan of the design of this mount. I would be considering it myself, but it seems pretty overpriced for what you are getting.

    I'll have to check into the possibility of fabbing something myself. No better project to learn how to weld than a structural winch mount with 9000lb loads right?
     
  15. Jul 8, 2012 at 7:29 AM
    #15
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    Jared, I agree it was a little overpriced for a metal bracket assembly. I guess you are paying for the convenience of someone who has already done the R&D to make this all fit. So my thought was, why reinvent the wheel?

    It works pretty well, But I do have some ideas on possibly reinforcing the mount by adding some additional brackets that would bolt around the frame rail and then bolt into this bracket. I have concerns that the factory frame mounting locations on the Tacoma (the 3 bolts) are attached to some pretty thin metal by comparison to this winch mount, so the factory mounts on the Tacoma are by far the weakest point. The winch bracket itself is plenty beefy.

    I really like the "stealth-ness" of this setup. To glance at the Tacoma you have no idea its there. (Especially here in Colorado where you are required to have a front lic. plate.) Another thought I had was to add a hinge to the license plate so I can flip it up when I need the winch and flip it down when I don't. (Sort of like the 70's vintage cars that had the gas filler behind the license plates.)

    If I decide to make these mods (the reinforcement brackets and hinge setup) I will add pictures of those as well.
     
  16. Jul 8, 2012 at 8:09 AM
    #16
    weazel

    weazel Well-Known Member

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    Good job, my take on the remote spot

    007.jpg

    015.jpg
     
  17. Jul 8, 2012 at 6:39 PM
    #17
    g34rh34d

    g34rh34d [OP] Well-Known Member

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    '08 4 DR TRD Off Road - ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift, UCWMS, Airbags
    UCWMS; ICON Stg 1 Adjustable Coil Overs ~3" lift/shocks; Diff drop Spacers; Light Racing UCAs, Firestone Airbags
    I like the convenience of this location... Nice job! :thumbsup:
     
  18. Jul 9, 2012 at 6:46 AM
    #18
    gov875

    gov875 WahooTaco

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    looks great! nice install and thanks for all the pictures. i keep debating getting one of these, just wish they were cheaper.
     
  19. Jul 9, 2012 at 4:14 PM
    #19
    landphil

    landphil Wishin' I was Fishin'

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    Many thanks for the detailed pics. I'm planning on building my own mount, and even though I know I want to make a few changes, it helps with the general idea. I'm planning to mount my winch a couple inches lower, so the pull off the bottom of the drum is level with the frame, rather than above. Of course, I'll have to cut an opening in the bumper skin for the fairlead, but thats OK. I'm also planning to add a couple shackle mount d-rings to stick out through the tupperware.
     
  20. Jul 12, 2012 at 9:18 AM
    #20
    Benson X

    Benson X My build thread sucks...

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    If you don't draw blood, you're doing it wrong!
    Thanks for such a detailed install write-up. It is very helpful and informative. A picture tells a thousand words!

    I will hopefully be finishing up a similar winch mount next weekend, so this helps IMMENSELY with looking at clearance, tolerances, and mounting from the UHWMS.


    Thanks bud!
     

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