Rear swing out spare tire mount? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Rear swing out spare tire mount?


February 4, 2006
Reaction score
City, State
Allentown PA
Year, Model & Trim Level
94 XLT
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I want to do it/buy one, give me info

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Custom made bro. No one sells them for the X.

I made mine-- a peice of square tubing for the "bumper" made a triangle out of 2x4 tubing, and used a trailer axle to pivot on. Even made the top fold down so I can open the window without sliding the whole carrier away from the vehicle. (works good in parking lots) A buddy used a bicycle spring to hold the weight of the tire when it folds out.

Thought or heard james duff is making or going to be making them.should hold a can and tire on a tube bumper with a hitch built in....key word ""think""

Would be very nice to have options other than home brew.

I bought one for 1 of my old X's like 8 years ago. Not sure who made it. Bought off a member. Sold when I sold the X.

do it...looks cool and makes it easier to access the spare....i had thought years ago of pulling one off of a BII and attaching it, but with no money to get one and materials on a scrap pile, i built one myself out of some steel pipe used for propane gas line...

here it is on my 93 sport:


just bought a 91 xlt so i'm currently working on getting it to sit right with the body lines, moving it up an inch or so higher, and fabing new hinges and a reinforcing mount inside the body to keep it from sagging and warping the body panels....

RLC on my 95 Sport

Re: 5spman, your update reminds me of the tire carrier on my Car Crushing Monster Van (73 FS Chevy, 5" lift, 35" tires) that took a couple design iterations to get right. I built the carrier from swing set tubing (3" thinwall) and gate hardware. Original full-width with gas carriers swung a wide path around the van and was clumsy to use. I trimmed it down to half-width tire-only, which was much handier.

BTW, I did get an RLC rear bumper for my 95 Sport. James was nice about custom safety chain brackets and socket for my trailer wiring.


looks good...

btw, finally finished up the extra touches and installed mine on the 91



5spdman, the swing mount looks great. Granted, you're only using, what looks to be, a stock sized tire, but did you have any fear of the mounts ripping out when creating the carrier? If so, how did you reinforce the inside? Also, how did you connect it to the hatch for normal driving conditions?

Thanks man

I will be a little bold to comment that 5spdman puts the mount bolts in lateral shear so should good against tear-out. By contrast, on my full-size Chevy van, the mounts were on the back (where the taillight is on the Explorer) and more in tension. The back-up pads were only about an inch bigger than the mount footprint (gate hinges a little larger than 5spdman's mounts) made from scrap body sheet metal and stiffened by turning the edges up 1/4". I had no problem with body pull-out or cracking taking the weight of a 35" tire, including using them as the steps to climb up on the roof. I expect that tailgate bracket/pull pin on 5spdmans' truck to be more than enough -- it is a lot heftier than the small gate latch I used on the door of my van without problem. What is a problem is having a side-swing door take the weight of the tire rather than the body - it tends to overcome the latch and pull the door open on acceleration. I think that is why many of the old conversion vans have the holes from removing a factory door-mount spare.

I'm not trying to hijack 5spdman but add an additional example that you don't need to over-build a tire carrier, just not under-build it in a couple strategic places.

Yes that is a stock sized tire, and I agree with GopherBaroque: you don't have to over-build, just don't under-build. I myself did under-build a little when it came to the hinges and I'll explain.....the hinges are actually bolted like this to the body:


On the prototype (see pic I posted of the purple two door), I actually had under-built more than on version 2.0. I only had two bolts per hinge; the ones on the right side. This was not good as it let the body flex terribly and would pull the unbolted side of the hinges away when the carrier was swung out, warping the body even more. When I did it this time (re-fabed new hinges), there are some "reinforcements" within the body that, well I'll be honest, by pure dumb luck met up with where a few of the mounting bolts went....some of the bolts were a PITA to get tightened (I actually still have a box wrench stuck inside the body somewhere I can't reach), but they hold good. I would, however, suggest (to others as well as myself) following GopherBaroque's suggestion of reinforcement.....before I start really getting off the road with this (or getting larger tires after the lift for that matter), I'll for sure reinforce it.....not sure how at the moment, but I'll get it figured out.

The "latch" is rather quite simple. I twisted (to go from the angle of the support in the carrier to the horizontal latch) and welded a small piece of flat steel to the tubing and drilled a hole in it. The piece on the rear hatch is simple too: it's a rear bumper mounting bracket from a late 80's D***e Ram van (the rear chrome bumper/roll pan on the pic with the prototype was the bumper from the same van, but cut and welded to not be as wide)....with some more dumb luck, the bolts attaching that to the rear hatch also went through some reinforcement in the close it, I simply swing the gate shut, and drop in a hitch problems at all....if you want, I can get some close-ups of the components :)

If I were to redesign this in the future (which is likely), I'll end up using a tube bender to make it smoother instead of cutting all my angles and welding every joint (only option I had here), welding on lug bolts for an explorer so I have the same size lug nuts on the carrier as the rest of the vehicle, and putting the mounting plate a inch or 3 higher. Other than that, I love it! :D