Today I was finally able to make time to work on fixing my front bumper. I was gifted this truck for Christmas about three years ago. The old work truck had 250,00 miles on it and some custom body work was done by my little brother, who had hit a pole with the front end. I’ve fixed the hood and headlight bezel that was broken from the accident but it still had an eye sore of a front bumper. I bought the new chrome front bumper from a local junkyard for $30. I assumed the swap would be as simple as removing a few bolts from the old bumper and installing the new one. I was wrong. My S10 truck is the lowest model truck from 1989. This means the factory skimped on some areas. An example of this would be the welded on front bumper.
The first thought was to remove the front bolts off the old bumper and use the stock welded on brackets for the new bumper. Well, due to my younger sibling’s joy ride the bracket is bent badly and there is no way to get the bolts off. So down the rabbit trail we go. The final solution is to grind off the original bolts holding the bumper on so we can have access to the frame and welded on brackets.
Here is the best picture I have showing how badly the front bumper was bent into the body of the pickup.
In the pictures below you can see the grinder marks on the old bumper where the top of the bolts were ground down. This bumper is not worth saving so there is no need to be gentle.
This is what the factory brackets looked like after removing the bumper. You can see they are welded directly onto the frame of the truck.
This is the left bracket. You can see how it is closer to the body panel than the above picture because of the accident. To Remove the brackets we had to grind the factory welds. By removing the welds the front bumper mounts were taken off easy with an old slide hammer.
Here I am touching up the frame rails after removing the first bracket. The original grinding left sharp edges that I wanted to dull down. Also, the factory welds added unwanted width to the frame so that the new bumper mounts would not fit.
Here we are drilling the frame rails to be able to bolt on the new bumper.
This is the final product. A shiny new (junkyard) bumper with a new bottom plastic air deflector.
I’m really happy with how this turned out. The bumper had been sitting in my garage for about 8 months collecting dust waiting to be installed. I like how you can really tell how bad the junk yard hood is now… There will be posts in the future with other modifications and upgrades!