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I've got a Warn 8274 on the front of my rig that I'd like not to have walk off. I've also got winch rope I'd like to keep on the rig. My goal is to prevent the casual to average thief.

First, what are your methods for securing your winch to your vehicle.

I know welding the bolts to the rig is one choice. I'm looking for alternate methods.

I know locking the rig in the garage is another method. I wish I had a garage to lock my rig up in.

Specifically, I'm looking at things like "special" bolts or the like. I haven't seen too many 1/2" sized security bolts.

Second, are there any good methods for keeping the rope attached to the rig? Has anyone put a lock on the free spool lever? Or is it lock the "rope" thimble to the rig?

Lastly, I am looking for a plain jane unmarked aluminum fairlead. Yes, I want no company logos, names, etc. I've checked out probably 20 companies(pirate yellow stars, ebay, and otherwise) with no luck. Anyone know of one before I harass a yellow star for a plain one:homer: Ideal would be anodized black but beggars will be choosers:shaking:
 

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thhhpptthh!
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weld the bolts.

keep the rope attached? not gonna happen unless you can figure out a way to lock the freespool knob on that 8274.

plain jane fairlead? buy one, grind the logo off it, grab a sharpie and make it black again.(your local anodizer will probalbly drop it in with the next batch of black for cheap)
 

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I just took a small piece of square stock and welded it beside the bolt head so if I ever need to remove it I simply just take a cutoff wheel and cut the weld to remove the bar stock and not ruin the bolt. if I thief tried to put a socket on the bolt it would be a no go. as far as the rope I don't have a good one there. maybe take the hook off and use a padlock through the loop into a hole in the fairlead or mount?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
:shaking:

owned
Shit happens Mr. Perfect:shaking:

The first 400 results on my search did not show those.

Ben, thank you for the time to post those up.:beer::beer:

A casual thief is the guy who is just gonna walk up and say "wow, that is easy to pull of" and go to town.

Has anyone seen something in the 1/2" size for button head bolts(security style or otherwise) To me, the button head would seem to defeat vicegrip attempts and the huge hex key needed wouldn't be in a common thief's tool box.
 

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Weld a small piece of U-channel over one of the bolt heads. While it isn't as important with a foot forward mount (being it's not mounted in a shear load), I'm not a big fan of welding the actual bolt.

If you do this to only one bolt, pick one on the gear train side of the 8274.
 

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Just use 3/8" steel cable. The weight alone will convince folks to leave it alone.
 

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I used hex head bolts on mine- most people don't carry around big hex wrenches etc. just to be extra annoying I filled them with black silicone and after they dried, cut the silicone flush with a razor blade. Unless you look closely, it looks as if there's no way to get a wrench on it. If you ever needed to, just dig out the silicone with a screwdriver.
 

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If you have the room, how about using locking lug nuts under the nuts that are already there?
 

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I used hex head bolts on mine- most people don't carry around big hex wrenches etc. just to be extra annoying I filled them with black silicone and after they dried, cut the silicone flush with a razor blade. Unless you look closely, it looks as if there's no way to get a wrench on it. If you ever needed to, just dig out the silicone with a screwdriver.
This is a great idea, will be using it on lots of things in the future.
 

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This isn't the definitive...."ah that's magic duude" answer nor is it a direct solution and I know that.

What about putting a simple vinyl cover (preferably unclean and not glossy/rubbed with tire shine) over the winch so it doesn't jump out @ you. That may sound dumb to us since most of us are a little hyperobservant about vehicle parts. However, to the average person/tweaker...rigs with ten thousand stickers and a blingin winch on the front are more memorable.

Obviously a nicely built scout or clean early bronco stands out regardless but you would be surprised how little the average person notices. I don't even notice a stock TJ driving down the road but through a winch on there and it blips the radar and you're more likely to recognize and remember the rig the next time you see it parked somewhere.
 

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Bar Design

One way to secure your winch is to have a bar that prevents the winch coming straight out.

P2150321.jpg

This is my set up (ignore the strange distorted photo I don't know what my camera did). My winch won't come out (in one piece) unless you pull four bolts out and roll the bar forward. You can get the winch out by taking the top off the winch then the bottom half will lift out, but you have to take the number plate off as well to get to the bolts.
As for the cable if you have it attached like above, pulled up tight enough I suspect the free spool won't unlock. As an aside nearly no one here uses the freespool on an 8274 as winching out is as quick, if not easier. We had two standard 8274s on our competition Hilux, one with a 6hp motor off a 9.5TI on it. Both have the freespool handle removed and an R clip through the shaft to keep it permanently engaged. (We also weld a washer on in place of the C-clip on the brake shaft to stop the whole thing flying to bits under load.) We now have changed one of the 8274s to a twin 6hp motor set up with a custom on the drum freespool.
 
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