Originally Posted by TheArcticWolf1911
I attempted to install a new panel on my 98-00 bumper before I swapped, and even with it on the truck, it's a giant PITA. The metal chewed up the tabs before I was able to get it on. I wound up having to screw in one side.
If worse comes to worse, I've seen people run without it. Not the best look in the world, but it's doable if absolutely necessary.
In all honesty, I'd recommend just getting a new bumper. the 01-03 is put together so much better. I can't vouch for the other bumpers, though.
Think I'll try Fordzilla's suggestion first. If that fails, worst case scenario I shave the tabs down and stick a nut and bolt through em with some loctite 242 to hold everything in place. If the two bolts on each side don't do a good enough job holding it in place, that is. If they work fine, I won't waste my time.
But I already ordered the parts I have, and it would cost me a lot of money to return what I have, plus even more to buy a newer model bumper + fog lamps and everything else. Still, I appreciate your input and your time.