Hidden Winch Mount Pictures Please | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Hidden Winch Mount Pictures Please


DIY stunt double
Staff member
Elite Explorer
June 16, 2003
Reaction score
City, State
Humboldt, KS
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 Mounty
I am particularly interested in mounting my winch behind the stock bumper with the fairlead in the "mouth" area below the "bumper" surface. Bottom grill hole in other words--

Please post pictures of how you attached it all to the frame if possible. Thanks!!

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Here's how I did it. This is the Harbor Freight Badlands 9000lb winch, and I used the harbor freight mounting blate. Steel spacers to make up for the lip on the mounting plate, and 4 grade 8 bolts. I haven't "used" it, but I did do a test pull, and drug the truck in park 50 feet down the road in front of my house (good thing I didn't pull my tree over on it) and there was no flex or issues at all. I will be modifying the stock bumper to go back over it.


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Now that's what I'm asking for--thanks!!. Would you mind taking close ups of all the pertinent parts--frame mounting and such, please?

I'd appreciate it.

I think a "all metal" bumper might be easier to tuck this in behind but I would like to try to tuck it in behind our plastic mounty bumper if at all possible.

sure, I have to run some errands right now, but when I get back I'll take some. I was thinking about working on getting the bumper on today anyway.

DominicanX and fishfood have something similar to what you are asking that I saw this weekend. I think they were both running bodylifts. Not sure if you are or if it even matters.

Here you go! I did get my bumper back on. I need to do some futzing to get it level, and have to figure out a way to easily access the clutch and control connector. I can reach them through the hole, but it's not easy....

My gf thinks it looked better without the bumper. LOL. She wants me to take it back off.








Well Crap.... Those aren't working. Just go here, and you can scroll through my Flickr and see the pics.


Np turdle. What do you think... Bumper on or off?

lol. She got a kick out of that.

Hey, waaay back, you were working on kits for the 4406 swap. I ended up doing mine and I love it.

Oh, and by the way, I am having blocks machined to replace the spacers on the bolts. That should eliminate any chance of flex due to the space, and make it more rigid.

custom winch mpount

Chiming in here based on turdle's PM request..... i have all the detailed photos of my winch mount behind the factory bumper assembly, but i will have to remember where they are and will follow up. my winch is Ramsey 8500. I originally set it up so the cable would comeout through the little holes in the tupperware air dam, but i didnt like the look , so i eventually cut away the center portion of the airdam. (photos to follow)

in summary what i did was

1.removed bumper assembly
2. welded in two 2" angles on inside of frame members (at right height to allow cable through airdam)
3. cut a universal winch mount plate to width and drilled holes for plate to angle.
4. centered winch in space and drilled for bolts (winch to plate).
5. rewired controller to locaqtion in the top of engine compartment
6. cuss and grumbled as i realized that winch assembly now blocks access to bumper mounts.
7. learned how to be contortionist with extentions, etc and reconnect the bumper.
8. weld in two shackle mounts at the point where the factory butterfly bumper mounts can be seen after the body lift.

there is some sequencing issue like perhaps whinch has to go on plate before plate goes to frame, and bumper extensions have to stay with frame. as well if i remember correctly, .

winch mount info

i think i managed to get a couple photos attached.

the mud one is from today. unfortunately the shackled got ripped off over the weekend. the others are a couple progress prints during the initial install.

oh yeah, one more step....you need to find a way to remount your front license bracket if you are in a state that requires the front plate.


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looks good fish! Couple things I forgot to mention about mine. I did trim the inner bumper mount tabs on the frame to allow me to put the winch in through the front, however if I had planned a little better, could have installed the winch from below.

I had to move my tranny cooler up a bit, and lengthen the lines to clear the mounting plate.

I may go back in and relocate the electrical box to make more room, but in the meantime, I installed the electrical box backwards. The wires exiting the box wouldn't clear the radiator support. This does however mean that my controller connection interferes with the clutch handle. I might resolve that with a wireless controller, but still messing with it.

I have a front reciever and then a winch plate welded to that, in addition the bolts for the front hitch run throught the winch plate then into the frame.

Keeping an eye on this thread because a tucked in winch is in my near future.

i attached one more photo of install before i cut away the excess air dam. oh yeah... i cant really get to the clutch (freespool lever) so i end up letting line out with the motor.


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My Hidden Winch

I'm sorry it took sooooo long, but better late than never. Chances are you've already completed your project.

You can see in the pictures where both mounts are bolted to the frame and then a small weld to join the hitch receiver and winch plat. In the last pic you can see the notch cut out of the facia so I can reach in and pull the lever.


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