I have had requests here and on other forums on how i hid the bolts on my bumper, so in good Jepper nature i have decided to let it be know. Here we go.
Gather the metal you plan to use, i used 3/16" plate and some 1x1 Square tubing, 1/2" Grade 8 Bolts.
1. I took 1x1 square tubing and cut it to the lenth that the heigth of the frame rail (6" off the top of my head). 4 of them.
2. Place cut tube up on the frame mount and mark where the holes will be, on mine the top of the tube was flush to the top of the frame mount.
3. Drill the tubing where you made your marks, go all the way through both sides, with a 1/2" drill bit.
4. Next use a cut off wheel and on one side of the square tubing, cut a square just big enough for a bolt head to enter the channel of the tubing. Note: Only notch the tube deep enough to get the head in, about a 3/16-1/4" Other wise welding will be more difficult.
5.Now you should be able to insert a 1/2" bolt into tubing so that the head sits in the channel and the threads stick out the other side.
6. Construct the shell of your bumper now. Weld inside and out. Move around while welding as to not overheat a area and warp. Tip: Save the under side of the shell untill later. For cutting, a torch or a angle grinder with a cut-off wheel makes real nice cuts.
7. Take your tubing you just made up and bolt it to your frame rails snuggly.
8. Get your welder ready (disconnect your battery) and a friend would be helpful.
9. Have friend hold the bumper shell up to the tubeing making sure the bumper is centered.
10. Tack weld all the tubing to your bumper (One good tack on each end of tube is good.
11. Take the bumper off of Jeep
12. Now it is time to finish welding the tubeing and shell together. Tip: Use a nut and run it up tight to the tubing on all the bolts, this brings the head of the bolt to the top of the tube and prevents the bolt from being welded on accident too low in the channel. The bolts will be able to move around a little, this is good.
13. Weld all the way along each tube, burnning the mount tubeing and the shell of the bumper in real good. There is a small gap to fill on each tube where you notched, that is why it is important to keep the notch as shallow as possible.
14. Here you may want to clean up the welds so far
15. Finish the shell by welding in your bottom skin. On mine, the bottom only goes back about an 1 1/4"
16. Go over bumper and grind/smooth/blend all welds. If you have some pits use J.B. Weld After this your bumper should look like a single piece of metal.
16. Dependig on what else is planned, your bumper may be ready to go on, get d-rings, winch gurads, winch openings, or some crazy other idea. If you go with d-ring tabs i have a few recommendations.
A. Mount through the face, not just on the face
B Get piece of scrap left over and cut it so it fits between your frame mounts.
C. Cut a hold in your bumer face where you would like the tabs to be (Center of the frame rails is best)
D. With the spare piece you just cut for the backside in place, mark from the front where the tabs go.
E. Cut the hole on the piece that goes in the back, whe layed in the back, you can now see all the way thtough both pieces.
F. Insert the tabs to the depth you would like and weld them to the back support plate.
G. Now weld the tabs on the face as well.
I. Weld the surt plate in the back to the bumper shell, 2 sides are good enough.
J. Now, with good welds, you should have D-ring tabs that could lift the Jeep right off the ground if needed. ( Disclaimer: If you try and lift the Jeep in the air and it fails i am not responsible)
If you have any questions please ask!