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Old 08-02-2014, 04:27 PM   #21
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

^^^I REALLY like that one. It resolves the primary complaints about my Reunel: 1) Inability to open doors 180, 2) The top isn't enough area to safely rely on for a step, 3) Storage
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Old 08-02-2014, 05:29 PM   #22
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

I Realize one of the reasons off having the big rear bumpers is to have the spare on a swing arm and ability to use the spare tire space for a box etc. Question I have: is the stock spare accessible w/ the Ruenel or Aluminess bumpers? Was just test fitting the SMB swing tire mount for stock bumper and realized it covers the hole used to lower the stock spare! Was a bit surprised about that. At one point was considering running two boxes, left and right, on stock bumper mounted swing arms but if I cannot get to the spare then that will not work!!
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Old 08-02-2014, 07:20 PM   #23
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

You could drill a hole or have one drilled pretty easily I think but very good point. E I'm not sure if my Reunel has the hole or not.
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Old 08-03-2014, 06:44 AM   #24
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

On the Reunel we just swung the tire to get to the hole for the spare winch.

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Old 10-18-2014, 07:43 PM   #25
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dig255
Thanks for the like.
The uncropted view.
On the Dalton Hwy last summer
This is an awesome pic, are you leaking fuel from the fuel door?
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Old 10-18-2014, 09:42 PM   #26
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

gzzd: I guess it depends on what you want to do with your van. I did what flyfisher did. I kept the stock bumpers and added a front receiver primarily for a shackle. And the front receiver will also take a portable 12,000 lbs. receiver winch, which if I bought a winch, is what I would like to have since I could use it on the back bumper and other vehicles which I own. The receiver also has two 2 1/2" eyelets. I have pulled down trees and skidded logs with the front shackle, so it is functional. The reason for keeping the stock bumpers was primarily to save weight. They are the lightest bumpers out there. And I don't drive off road with the rig. I use it primarily for driving on snowy roads. And I like to keep the weight between the tires on slick roads not on the front or back ends of the vehicle. That said, carringb has a point: When I am eyeball to lit-up eyeball with a Mule Deer doe standing on the right shoulder of the road at 4:00 in the morning, I find myself saying "Don't jump! Don't jump!"



Oh, and on the fenderflares, another ski instructor who has followed me to the resort has complained that I should put mudflaps on my van. I probably will, but I don't have fender flares and wonder if that is why they put them on. Because when Salem Kroger converted my van to 4x4 they put spacers on the back wheels which moves the wheel outbound and probably makes the tire throw more stuff?

Q: Any suggestions for mudflaps guys?

I just pm'd Ford_6L_E350 and asked him what mudflaps he installed and whether they were turn key or required modification. Maybe mudflaps would be an acceptable alternative to fender flares...

? Thanks deserteagle56!
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Old 10-19-2014, 08:34 AM   #27
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

Quote:
Originally Posted by E350
gzzd:
Oh, and on the fenderflares, another ski instructor who has followed me to the resort has complained that I should put mudflaps on my van. I probably will, but I don't have fender flares and wonder if that is why they put them on. Because when Salem Kroger converted my van to 4x4 they put spacers on the back wheels which moves the wheel outbound and probably makes the tire throw more stuff?
In a great many states, it's the law! Utah in particular can be pretty anal about tires sticking out past the body and especially no mud flaps.
Even if you don't drive off-road I'm sure that the roads to the ski resorts get "sanded" when slick. Most times that sand is more like small gravel and your tires are throwing those small rocks all over any nearby vehicle. So no wonder the ski instructor following you was complaining - probably listening to the gravel ricocheting off his vehicle.
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Old 10-20-2014, 12:26 AM   #28
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

I had the Aluminess bumpers front and rear on my previous van. My current one has stock bumpers. The big plus for the Aluminess bumpers is storage, without a doubt. It constantly bugged me that the Aluminess bumpers had points to attack shackles but they weren't to be used for pulling. Okay, aluminum is soft, I get it. But there are ways for real engineers to design strength into the structure if aluminum must be used for weight reasons. Like so many things in life, Aluminess bumpers are _a_ solution, but not a _good_ solution to the problems they are meant to solve. As far as storage goes, it would be sort of wonderful if they had any capability to keep out dust and water. In general, I characterize the Aluminess bumpers as a big disappointment (to/for me). And I also understand why people buy them and like them.

One big plus to the stock bumpers is the van doesn't attract anywhere near as much attention. The Aluminess-equipped van attracted too many young guys who wanted to discuss how they thought the rig was a first-class vehicle for navigating the coming zombie apocalypse. It probably should go without saying, but if those bumpers turned the van into a veritable pied piper for women (only) as one drove through town, they would be worth their weight in silver.

That said, along the lines of the Woody Allen joke about "The food in this restaurant is terrible" -- "Yes and such small portions", I do miss the storage space of the Aluminess bumpers.


PS: Has anybody actually tested the ability of Aluminess bumpers and brush guards to protect the front of the vehicle when hitting a deer/elk/moose/etc? I tend to think that if you're serious about needing that protetion that steel would be much better. Arguably a well-engineered steel bumper for that purpose wouldn't weigh much more (or maybe even _any_ more) than the Aluminess bumper. This takes us back to the "niche market, not many bolt-on solutions" factor JohnAndMandi mentioned above.
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Old 10-21-2014, 10:16 AM   #29
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

Has anyone installed a front receiver hitch themselves on a SMB 4x4 conversion (front leaf springs)? This is still on my list since I do not have a front recovery point. However, all the hitches I've seen do not appear like they will work because of the 4x4 conversion.
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Old 10-21-2014, 01:22 PM   #30
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Re: Why bumpers and fender flares?

Quote:
Originally Posted by redrock
It constantly bugged me that the Aluminess bumpers had points to attack shackles but they weren't to be used for pulling.
Where did you hear that the front shackles can't be used for recovery? Like any winch point I
understand they are rated for a specific load and have had my share or failures with heavy equipment
and even stock recovery points. I was talking with Dave from Aluminess at SMB who was working with
a customer who did rip one of the points off his front bumper but Dave said it was unusual and covered
the repair cost even though the owner admitted he had forgot to lock the hubs and was basically
pulling the van out of a mud bog w/o the aid of the four wheel drive. I know that the rear bumper is
not designed for recovery points and to have them installed requires modification. The Qatar rescue vans
had rear shackles installed to tie down the vehicles during transport but were not designed for recovery.

Has Aluminess changed their stance? I've pulled my van out several times and it's heavy. I use a receiver
shackle at the rear and even that is rated for a specific load.
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