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post #1 of (permalink) Old 02-20-2005, 09:58 PM Thread Starter
 
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recovery hooks?

Hello,
This past winter in New England brought a few storms our way and in one I had the distinct pleasure of pulling a late model Dodge Ram out of a ditch. It was beautiful as the Dodge was nicely equiped SLT and certaily capable in our weather to get you were you need to go as long as you can DRIVE the damn thing smartly.

Anyway, it was this knight in shining armour moment where I found out I had no recovery hooks in the front of my vehicle! I managed to pull the lovely damsel out of the ditch as an F350 diesel super crew watched or "spotted"; god I loved that!

In looking at this situation I began to wonder where Ford had put it's front hooks on my generation and how well they worked. I know generic recovery hooks can be purchased at any number of places and I have recently read a piece where an ingenious fellow cut slots in his front bumper below the bolting points just to preserve ground clearance and provide a stock looking alternative.

The lessons I took from this were two fold; teach the wife to drive smart and get some damn hooks in the front of my truck! The front bumpers extend below the frame a good two or so inches on the '95's so bolting some Wal-Mart hook wouldn't be as clean as I would like. What did Ford do and what have y'all done?
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 02-20-2005, 10:06 PM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

I drilled an extra hole and bolted mine to the sway bar mounts. Everyone said it was too weak but they have yet to fail me. I will try to get some pics.

Also, consult Reptillikus on how he did his.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 02-21-2005, 11:29 PM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

Do NOT do this. when they do fail, someone may seriously regret it. That steel is not strong enough. We pulled a Bronco 1 time with a hook on the swaybar to frame mount. It did not get him out, and it distorted severely, so we stopped before something bad happened.

I don't remember on here how to post pics, but I used to have hooks mounted to the bottom of the frame. Had to cut the bumper a little.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 02-22-2005, 03:23 AM
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Re: recovery hooks?

Agreed, that's scary. I do know of locals who've done it but I'd look for another solution. If you want the stock look then you can replace your bumper with the powerstroke intercooler style bumper with the factory slots near the frame. You could then mount hooks to the inside of the frame rails and hook a strap through the slots to the hooks. Juice did a nice job of cutting the hook slots in his bumper, which is the cheap way to do it safely. [img]images/graemlins/codger.gif[/img]
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 02-22-2005, 08:51 PM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

I done did it this here way, but then agin' I's a 86 not a 96



Sounds like the same way the boys is describing.

I jerked a Nissan Chillcoot out of the ditch last Winter and got that same good feeling. It's so good when it's an inferior brand !

Sixlitre
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 02-23-2005, 11:15 AM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

Scrap that POS swaybar Six! [img]images/graemlins/codger.gif[/img]
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 02-24-2005, 05:36 PM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

I should probably add that I rarely use these tow hooks, as a usualy pull off the brush gaurd. They were there before the brshgaurd, and still look in good shape. I trust ya'lls opions on it though.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 02-25-2005, 11:24 PM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

Norm

Mine's mostly a mileage mastering commuter now, spending most of it's life at 75mph on pavement. It ain't a mountain goat anymore, like it was in the Arctic with the big meats on it.

That sway bar, and it's partner out back, have urethane bushings and I can "leave" most cars in corners such as on ramp clovers.

For all intents and purposes my 86 is now a concert hall on wheels that gets me in and out of the city and gets phenominal mileage (for a bronco) doing it.

IMO my bronco, set up the way it is, is the ultimate urban vehicle. It's so short it's a dream to park, even parallel park. It pulls a U turn in two lanes.

I'm just at 6'-0" with the Winter tires and less with the Summers, so it goes into parking garages no troubles. I take great pleasure in parking the "small vehicle" spots undergound as, with careful parking, I can take up less of a footprint than the Niponese subcompact besides me(lengthwise, if not widthwise).

Also a 5.0 litre's exhaust sounds great between the buildings as you open it up at a light to snuff out the hopes, dreams and pride of some ricer.

There's a lot of J-walkers in the city, but even the boldest don't even think of darting in front of the Bronco. Same with cars. Nobody edges their nose out trying to cut in front of her either.

I love the looks on people's faces at the underground grocery store parking lots as you open "the cavern" when you drop the tailgate to load the groceries into. I always get a comment from them like "my car would fit in there !".

There's plenty of other urban advantages such as line of sight. I can see traffic jams miles ahead because we sit so high.

What car can drive over the centre median and U-turn it's way out of gridlock.

I once got out, during a 10 minute standstill gridlock, calmly locked the hubs, slapped her in low lock and crawled down through the ditch, up over the 20 foot burm, never to be seen again by the hundreds still stuck in gridlock.

I came down the other side onto a parallel secondary road, down into the ditch, up onto the road, unlocked the hubs and drove away passing a cop seconds later who was none the wiser of my little stunt !

And who can forget the pleasure of filling up at a downtown gas station. The owner of one of those "green" two seater hybrid commuter cars was fueling up beside me one day.

He looked over at my pump, still going for broke at over 100 litres pumped in, and his eyes nearly popped out of his head !

I couldn't resist shocking him some more so I said "just topping her up with prices this low today". He got his panties in a bunch and snitted back " how can you afford to drive that?".

I calmly replied " no payments in 7 over years and $44 a month insurance buys an awful lot of gas". The look on his face told me I was getting a smokingly better deal than his situation.

And who can resist the ultimate Winter pleasure of pulling lessor (all) vehicles out of the ditch on snow days.

Add to this the fun factor of taking the top off and cruising the city in Summer. Ottawa's got some money and, short of a burning Ferrari, the topless Bronco gets more thumbs up that any other vehicle on a hot day. My youngest brother calls it the "Ford Fun Machine", when the top's off.

The ultimate urban assault vehicle ![img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

Sixlitre
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2005, 12:13 AM
 
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Re: recovery hooks?

Cornering is for sissys! [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] I hear ya. Wheras my F150 is a POS compared to your jukebox on wheels it is kind of nice being able to corner in the old beast. I can still open my tailgate on the bronc if I stand on my tippy toes. I imagine getting groceries in and out would be a chore. I'm going to be toting a stepstool around with me so my wife can get in and out and that I can get onto the tailgate to load the back and the roof. I pulled the Rear diff today and hopefully I'll have my Detroit and 4.10s in tomorow to match the front. After that all that's needed will be front shocks (which I have already(14" procraps)), brake lines and drivelines. Damn the list is getting short. I think I'm going to make my May deadline! [img]images/graemlins/codger.gif[/img]
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