Reinstall Bumper & Maximus-3 Hoop Bar

Home stretch of the project!

Only a few more steps and we’ll be looking at the completed makeover of our Rubicon X front end! We still have yet to install the Maximus-3 Auxiliary Light Brackets, Hoop/Stinger Reinforcement Brackets, mount the bumper, reconnect the factory fog lights and reinstall the factory skid plate. And of course install and wire up our Lightforce RMDL170 ‘STRIKER’ 170mm Lights.

We also added a few items to our front end including a pair of red powder coated D-rings buffered by a set of rubber D-ring bushings and a red XD Half-link Winch Hook.

Installing the Hoop/Stinger Reinforcement Brackets

At this point Maximus-3 recommends installing the Hoop/Stinger Reinforcement Brackets due to the ease of access to the mounting location. It can be done later but it’s just easier to get them in place with the bumper off. The left and right side reinforcement brackets slide down into the mounting pocket that is outboard on the frame rail and get a M8 hex bolt and washer per side. Shown here is the driver side reinforcement bracket as well as our mistake in using a button head bolt instead of the Hex head. We later swapped the bolts out when we realized we needed those Button heads for topside of the hoop reinforcement bracket.

Installing the Maximus-3 Auxiliary Light Brackets

After a quick test fit of the bumper, we set it down one last time to install the Maximus-3 Light Brackets. These easily installed light brackets are designed to reuse the factory bolts on top center of the bumper and like the Maximus-3 Hoop and Winch Mount, are powdercoated to match the factory bumper finish. Reusing the factory M6 bolts and a pair of nuts provided in the kit, we installed the light brackets.

We really like the light bracket’s design angles. The brackets fit the bumpers appearance perfectly and locate the lights as close as possible to the winch without causing interference. Maximus-3 also has other light bracket options specific for this bumper including peripheral light brackets that mount on top of the wings left and right.

With the Reinforcement Brackets and the Auxiliary Light Brackets installed, it was time to reinstall the bumper and then move onto installing our Classic Hoop Bar.

Maximus-3 Classic Hoop Installation

Maximus-3 offers multiple styles of hoops for the Mopar designed Rubicon Special addition front bumpers. These include the Classic Style Bumper Hoop, the Moab/MW3 Hoop, the Stinger Hoop, the Stinger Starred Hoop, the X-Style Hoop, and the Low-Profile Style Bumper Hoop.

We opted for the Classic Style Bumper Hoop with a double bend angle towards center and an angled tilt that exactly matches the slope of the grill. Made from heavy gauge tubular steel, it’s a 100% bolt-on installation with included reinforcement brackets and hardware, and no additional drilling required to install on the factory bumper. Again, the powdercoat finish is a great match to the factory powdercoat making the hoop look more like a part of the Jeep rather than just another add-on accessory.

So what did we think?

With the project wrapped up and the front end transformed into a more complete recovery bumper, we were very happy with many aspects of this Maximus-3 Rubicon X (10A and Hard Rock) Bumper Module. For starters, it just looks damn good! Like we said earlier, the factory X bumper is a great looking, strong, utilitarian styled and functional bumper and we love that on a Jeep. Visually it was missing something that the winch and lights helped with but when we added the Classic Hoop, it just all came together in a sharp, sophisticated appearance without totally changing the factory X look. We assembled our thoughts on the next page in our Review and Analysis of the Maximus-3 Bar/Hoop, Winch Mount, Auxiliary Light Brackets and D-Ring Loops.

Review and Analysis