Enter the NoseGuard bumper from Kennesaw Mountain Accessories. This bumper solves many of the problems with the stock bumper. When the bumper arrives on the front doorstep, the first thing you notice is the weight. This thing weighs 75 lbs. The weight backs up the strength of the bumper. The main bumper is fashioned from 3/16" steel tubing, while the grille loop is schedule 40 pipe. No mere stump is going to bend this monster!
Because the ends of the NoseGuard follow the lines of the fenders, the fenders are actually better protected by the NoseGuard than they were by the stock bumper! This also vastly improves the approach angle of your rig. Some Jeepers trim the stock bumper off at the frame rails to achieve the same improvement in approach angle. With the Noseguard, your fenders remain protected.
Options abound on these custom-made bumpers. Winch mount, D-rings, light tabs, and receiver tubes can all be added to the NoseGuard. The NoseGuard delivered for evaluation was built to accept a Ramsey winch, a pair of lights, towbar mounts, and a single D-ring to replace the lost tow hooks.
The NoseGuard arrives without hardware. You'll need to provide the bolts necessary to attach it. Grade 5 hardware should work, but we prefer grade 8 and, therefore, had plenty of grade 8 nuts and bolts rattling around in the toolbox to complete the installation.
Installation is simple a three step process.
the old bumper.
To facilitate removing the old bumper, spray a penetrating oil like PB Blaster on the bolts the night before you plan on removing the old bumper. There are four bolts holding the old bumper in place. Two on top at the front end of the frame horns and two underneath, closer to the shackle than the end of the frame horn. Hit them all with a healthy dose of your favorite rust-buster.
If you have tow hooks, as this CJ did, you'll have two more bolts to remove. Disconnect any lights mounted to the old bumper and tape and label the ends of the wires. Pop the stock bumper off and put it in the "I know I can do something with this..." pile in the garage.
If the ends of your frame rails are rusty like this CJ-7's are, this would be a good time to wire brush the rust off and apply some paint.
of manufacturing inconsistencies from the factory, many CJ's have slight
differences up front. Fitting the NoseGuard to the mounting holes on our
Jeep turned out to be problematic. We needed to do a little trimming to
the bumper in order to clear the front shackle. The pictures below show
the corner we had to trim - about 30 seconds with the Sawzall cured the
problem. We drilled a couple of extra holes in the Noseguard to take advantage
of the rear set of holes in the frame from the previously mounted tow
Once everything lines up and the shackle has room to swing, it's time to bolt the NoseGuard onto the front of the Jeep. Bolt it down snuggly. Take a break and admire the rough-and-ready look the NoseGuard adds to your rig.
Finish the installation by drilling the light tabs to fit your lights and installing the lights to the bumper.
The next time you get to a stump or a boulder and walk right over it instead of bashing your bumper, say "thanks!" to the good people at Kennesaw Mountain Accessories!