Very simple front skidplate... (large images) - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 09-27-2005
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Very simple front skidplate... (large images)

Today, John helped me complete a new front skidplate for my 2000 XLT. It's basically a piece of 24"x32"x.25" aluminum diamond plate with two bends and 4 notches cut into it. I'll make a cad drawing and post it when I get some time. The matterial cost me about $30 and the bolts cost $3. The cost for bending and cutting the matterial will vary.



Obviously, not yet installed. In this pic you can see the two notches made to allow clearance for the lower control arms. Two holes need to be drilled so that it will bolt to the crossmember. That bend is 20 degrees.

Here you can see the two notches cut to allow the factory tow hooks to be used. On the passenger side, you can kinda see the bolt coming thru on the far side of the tow hook. I believe that this hole is used for the bumper bolts so if you're using the stock bumper this won't work for you but if you make the center section come up higher, then you can drill the tow hook mount and put a couple bolts in there.

This one is a little closer than the previous one but doesn't give much more detail. The bend at the front (seen in this pic) is 70 degrees.
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Old 09-27-2005
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very nice! how thick?
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Old 09-27-2005
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1/4"
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Old 09-27-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TBarCYa
It's basically a piece of 24"x32"x.25" aluminum diamond plate


sorry tom...


I like it a lot though!!!
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Old 09-27-2005
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looks nice! i like it
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Old 09-27-2005
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looks good Tom Name:  bdsmiley.gif
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Old 09-27-2005
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very nice
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Old 09-27-2005
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Tom, if you haven't thrown away your bent-up stocker yet, will you hold onto it for me? I want to use it as a pattern to make something very light-weight (for road-debris deflection, not off-road use.)
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Old 09-27-2005
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Sorry man, but I threw that thing away a long time ago.
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Old 09-27-2005
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Quote:
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Sorry man, but I threw that thing away a long time ago.

d'oh! Oh well.
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Old 09-27-2005
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man that looks really good...love the skid plate deal with the winch
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Old 09-27-2005
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Looks sweet Tom, nice work. One thing on my mind... my skid plate has ridges bent into it that allow it to get bent, but can be popped out with one hit of a hammer from the backside. Being that it gets bent about every other time we go out (in Wharton alone), is yours going to be able to withstand that?
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Old 09-27-2005
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Hahaha... It won't pop back into shape, that I can guarantee. !/4" thick diamond plate aluminum is pretty strong stuff so if I do manage to bend it, I'll probably have repairs to do to the truck and won't be worried about the skidplate. :-)
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Old 09-27-2005
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Oh yeah... dindn't actually think of the thickness of .25" Good point
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Old 09-27-2005
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We had an electro-hydraulic plate bender and it worked hard bending that 1/4" aluminum diamond plate, I can tell you that. This particular bender is usually used on thinner stock, but it worked.

It was pretty cool actually. We went out with a magnetic angle finder and a measuring tape, roughed out the angles and length between the bends and lo and behold we were right on! Very gratifying.

Basically, that is bent right in front of where it mounts to the cross member by 20 degrees, then there is a 23.25" long section, followed by a 70 degree bend. Very simple but very effective and this thing is WAY strong. Like mine -- which is stainless and thinner, though very strong -- if it really bends, you may have more problems than the skidplate, lol.

Tom it looks HEAVY DUTY. Actually, it's too shiny for your truck, lol -- it'll look better when it oxidizes I think!
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Old 09-27-2005
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Are you trying to say my truck is dirty or something?? Seriously tho, I'm thinking of having it anodized black... That would be sweet.
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Old 09-27-2005
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Yes, it would! Kinda would get scratched up though.
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Old 09-27-2005
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just scuff it up and spray it with bedliner, it'll still have that cool look of diamond plate and be tough as hell
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  #19  
Old 09-27-2005
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Maybe, Andy. Tom put bedliner on our rock sliders and I have mine mostly worn off on the bottom -- underneath the truck scraping over things that stuff isn't QUITE as tough as it seems, lol.
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Old 09-27-2005
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I like it alot, is there a reason why you didnt leave above the tow hooks solid? I think it would have added to the appearance but there may be clearance issues or other thoughts. I really like it though.

EDIT: I need to clarify, like kinda boxing in the tow hooks if you know what I mean.
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Old 09-27-2005
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Mainly because we were not EXACTLY sure of the fit, and Tom doesn't have a nice plasma cutter at his house and aluminum that thick wears tooling out BAD.

So, we left the top open for simplicity of the final fit. Now that one has been fit, we could duplicate it with boxed openings, if need be. This was an "emergency fabrication", lol, to make sure Tom could wheel in Centralia.
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Old 09-27-2005
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The top bolt that holds on the tow hooks is in the way of boxing the top. It could be done, but the top part would be about 10" tall rather than the 7" that it is now. I had thought about going behind the tow hook, but then the other two bolts won't fit.

I'm sure it can be done tho like John said. It's just a matter of having the time and tooling to mess with it.
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  #23  
Old 09-27-2005
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Hey TbarCya what size tires were you running in that pic?
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  #24  
Old 09-27-2005
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hey john do you have the do it ourself stuff? I wonder if you took it to Linex or rhino if it would be more durable...thought probably not worth the price
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Old 09-27-2005
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Lookin nice man. Good work.

Hows the MM winch? I've heard that they are kinda slow...good choice on the syn cable too.
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