How To Install Personalized GraBars™

If you’ve been reading my posts, you would see how much bang for my buck I have gotten out of 2 cans of Mopar spray paint. This is the “final” installment of “All the things you can paint Tank!!!”.

Tools needed:
Spray Primer
Spray Paint (Tank, Hydro Blue, Black, SO…the possibilities are limitless when it comes to Jeep colors. Unless it is PCP anyway!)
Clear Coat (matte or shiny, take your pick)
GraBars from Welcome Distributing – JK GraBarsâ„¢
Socket wrench and metric sockets
Hex bits and driver
More time and patience than Mother Theresa
And the all important adult beverage (can’t forget that!)

Step 1 – Order the GraBars that are appropriate for your Jeep
Step 2 – In the order comments section, ask if they can leave the grips off and just stuff them in the box separately (they were able to do this for me)
Step 3 – Following the painting steps in my previous stubby antenna mod “how to”, proceed to paint the GraBars – see post here: Adventures with Tankie

Hold up. I have to interject on myself (not sure if I can do that…WAIT…I just did ). It was a nightmare painting these. They were so heavy that the paint would peel off every time you had to flip them over. If you have a way to suspend them – go ahead and paint. If you don’t care about imperfections and can’t suspend them – go ahead and paint. If you don’t have the extra funds for powder coating – go ahead and paint. (I’m the poster child for CDO so I wish I had powder coated them.)

Step 4 – Once painted, shove (with everything you have) the rubber grips onto the ends of the GraBars. I would get them to about a half inch from the end, then bang the end on my workbench to finish getting it all the way on. I suppose you could try lubing it up to make it slide on easier, but I didn’t think of that.
Step 5 – Follow the instructions provided with the GraBars for installation. All of my years of playing Operation as a kid paid off when I took the bolts out of the A pillars. Be SUPER careful when removing because if they fall in, you’ve got a lot of trim to take apart.
Step 6 – Start threading the top bolt on the front ones first. Get it in there with a couple of turns (just enough to be able to let go of the GraBar without it falling back out).
Step 7 – Finagle the big spacer into the hole at the A pillar and line it up with the hole in the GraBar. Then thread the long bolt through the GraBar and the spacer. Turn it until you can’t turn it anymore (shove up on the Grabar so you can get the A pillar bolt installed).
Step 8 – Screw the top bolt in as far as you can. Then alternating between the top and the side bolts, tighten both of them up.
Step 9 – Repeat on other side.
Step 10 – Install the rear (if applicable) GraBars.
Step 11 – Time for the adult beverage.

This is the first mod I really screwed up. I don’t like the way the paint came out. My parents couldn’t see anything wrong with them…but I can. For some reason the Tank paint just would not stick to the primer. It wasn’t an issue on the trim or the antenna. I’ve been painting these for weeks letting the coats dry in between because I kept having problems with it peeling off. I need to go get a paint pen touch up stick to fix the last two problems (I ran out of paint and couldn’t fix the last places that peeled off). I really do recommend powder coating.

Finally, be sure to save your original washers and bolts. If you trade in your Jeep, you can pull the GraBars and reinstall the bolts. That’ll save some big $s…especially if you powder coated them.

Here are the photos!

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