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Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver?

bigskydu

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I'd like to mount a winch on a hitch plate (something like this: https://www.amazon.com/ECOTRIC-Moun...rds=Hitch+Mounted+Winch&qid=1616518758&sr=8-2) so I can use the winch in the rear or occasionally in the front of the truck.

Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 71UoaincbjL._AC_SL1500_


Has anyone seen a swap for the front tow hook to make it a hitch receiver? Googling shows me a guy who made one years ago but that seems like a dead end now.

Looked like this:
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 108d1443545130-tow-hook-front-end-hitch-hook-hitch


Any other thoughts on the goodness or badness of this idea are welcome. :)
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Pedaldude

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Which engine does your truck have? There’s a good spot for one of these where the intercooler lives on the turbo engines, so if you have a V8, or the 3.3 V6, I imagine that it won’t be long before the aftermarket figures something out.
 
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bigskydu

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Which engine does your truck have? There’s a good spot for one of these where the intercooler lives on the turbo engines, so if you have a V8, or the 3.3 V6, I imagine that it won’t be long before the aftermarket figures something out.
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jeffcrum

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I am looking to do the same thing. I can only find two old options from years ago.

All I see now is the tow hook to shackle conversion. That one doesn't make sense to me. Soft shackle to connect tow hook and recovery line ... All good.

A tow hook to receiver conversion gives so many more options.
 
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bigskydu

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Agree! I've found nothing aside from those old posts. There is a front tow-hitch receiver that bolts on to the bottom of the chassis but it requires removing or cutting the air dam which I'm not interested in doing.

I am looking to do the same thing. I can only find two old options from years ago.

All I see now is the tow hook to shackle conversion. That one doesn't make sense to me. Soft shackle to connect tow hook and recovery line ... All good.

A tow hook to receiver conversion gives so many more options.
 

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jeffcrum

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So, I got the plans from Jeff@ super bumper. Awesome dude!

Just removed the tow hooks. Not sure it needs to be that elaborate.

Thinking tubes with bolt holes and socket holes only.

I just ordered 2 of these.
CURT 49120 2-Inch x 12-Inch Weld-On Raw Steel Trailer Hitch Receiver Tube https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B001GN6L4Y/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apan_glt_fabc_0DQHF0H7J60N0NXMQGEG

Will let you know the outcome.

Basic disclaimer: I am not an engineer and these are my opinions only. Please do your own investigations of all parts mentioned. Any use of any of these parts in any manner other than the manufacturer recommends or specifies is your responsibility.
 
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GarageMahal

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I'd like to mount a winch on a hitch plate (something like this: https://www.amazon.com/ECOTRIC-Moun...rds=Hitch+Mounted+Winch&qid=1616518758&sr=8-2) so I can use the winch in the rear or occasionally in the front of the truck.

71UoaincbjL._AC_SL1500_.jpg


Has anyone seen a swap for the front tow hook to make it a hitch receiver? Googling shows me a guy who made one years ago but that seems like a dead end now.

Any other thoughts on the goodness or badness of this idea are welcome. :)
I am also looking to use a receiver mounted winch and was planning to get a full front hitch (see link below). I see the appeal of replacing the tow hooks but am concerned about the overall strength.

https://www.curtmfg.com/part/31083

My only question at this point is will it fit on a 2022 Lightning...

Edit: I agree that cutting the lower air dam isn't ideal but it should be a cheap enough part to pick up at a salvage yard so I don't have to mess with my original.
 

jeffcrum

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Just a tease ... more to come.
@bigskydu

Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_185159
 
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jeffcrum

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Okay. Here it is. A huge thanks to my neighbor, @NEWT32, for all of the help. We had a blast doing this. He was just as excited as I was ?

First, a couple things.

1. The tow rings are easy to remove. Two bolts each. But, the bolts are attached to each other inside the frame, but loose and move around. If you take them both out at once, they move on you. You can get them back in place. Grab a flashlight, magnet, and screwdriver. Have patience!
2. The rear bolt is between two pieces of plastic and annoying. The front plastic is on with clips. We left it alone. The rear one comes off with three screws on each end. Take that off. But, maybe mark it with the receivers first. I cut the passenger side on the truck. Measured it after to cut the drivers side. It didn't line up. So. It went back on with a little force and bent plastic.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_194416


Remove the tow hooks and rubber piece around them. Only one bolt is required to be removed. It slides over the other loosened bolt.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_205749


I used the recievers I linked above. That length actually butts up against a bracket further back.

Half inch holes on one side for the bolts and inch holes on the opposite side for the socket.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_193122
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_193130

Center of half inch hole is 4 inches from the back. Center of front hole is 3 inches from center of back hole.

We drilled the half inch hole on a drill press and went all the way through the back side. Then a one inch bit to enlarge the top side hole.

It takes some maneuvering to bolt it on. Once you get one bolt started, crank it in a bit. You can then spin it back and forth to get the second nut (remember, they are connected) inside the frame lined up.

Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_194744

Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211011_095334


We had to shave a bit off the top of the reciever on the winch mount to clear the bolts to get it in far enough for the pin.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211010_205818


Due to the bumper trim, the pin is difficult to get in and out. But, it is doable. The left pin will not go in, but the right one will.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211011_094536


We have a possible plan to turn my locking pins and shorten them. I'd love to keep my Factor55 Hitchlinks in there. I'll report back how that goes.

The Factor55s fit in without modification.

Let me know if there are any questions. I am sure I left out something important :ROFLMAO:
 

jeffcrum

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I have these locking hitch pins
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07Y7YSR11

We shortened two of them and inch and recut them for the lock. We also cut the butt end down by about half.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211024_150047
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211024_150104


The pins go in easily now. But, the lock does not. We'll be taking a rototool to the lower trim shortly.
 

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jeffcrum

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Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211024_165351

Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211024_165354

Okay, just bought these. We think it will fix my issue without modifying the truck. Lock orientation.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B085QFS6DK

I'll let you know. And, just painted the recievers.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211024_171350
 

jeffcrum

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Good news and bad news.

The bad news is that the cut is different on these for the locks.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211030_092623


The good news is that we get to play with the lathe some more :ROFLMAO:
 

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I've been in way too many situations where I needed a winch on the back, not the front.

The tow receiver mounted winch gives you the versatility to pull from either end.

Seems like a "no brainer"!

Thanks for the posts!!

FORD is AWESOME!
 

jeffcrum

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And, we have it!

New pins cut down an inch like the first set. Then, the lock is recut to match the new ones.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211107_154752


The pins fit inside out.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211107_154909

With the lock attaching from the outside and the key pointing up/down/front/back.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211107_154917


And, the completed project from the front.
Ford F-150 Any product to convert front tow hook to hitch receiver? 20211107_154858


This was fun to do. @NEWT32 and I had fun doing it and sharing here.

I feel the front of my truck is more functional!
 

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