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December 18, 2014, 03:11:51 PM


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by Keith on December 12, 2014, 02:17:00 PM

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PRODUCT REVIEW
 
Introduction
DV8 Offroad is located in Riverside California. They are a small company building quality offroad products for JK's and Polaris RZR's. We take a look at Dv8 Offroad's latest offering the RS2 Rear Bumper Tire Carrier.

RS2 Features
The RS2 rear bumper tire carrier features a one piece design for excellent fit. It is made of 3/16" cold rolled steel for outstanding strength and durability. It has been engineered for a 40" tire and the tire mount is height adjustable. The RS2 incorporates a innovative one handed opening design. To facilitate the one handed opening the RS2 utilizes two heim joints attached to a steel plate on the rear tailgate. The steel plate replaces the rear tailgate vent. The plate has openings in it to maintain airflow in your JK allowing the HVAC system to operate within factory specifications. The bumper itself has an integrated tow hitch and D ring mounts. The corners contour to the body and are rounded up for excellent clearance. The RS2 appears to be a well thought out, highly engineered bumper. 


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The installation
First we start with the removal of the OE bumper and tire carrier. Being a 2014 JK all of the bolts came out fairly easy, a little word of wisdom wear goggles while underneath a lot unseen dirt will drop down on you. Next your going to remove two vents from the rear tailgate and the spare tire mount. The vents come out fairly easy but use caution to not break the retaining clips. The wiring for the third brake light should easily unplug once you gain access from the removal of the vents.

Next we need to mount the mounting plate to the tailgate. This is a key point of the RS2 system where the swing out carrier operates in tandem with the tailgate. When mounting you will see some horizontal cuts in the mounting plate. These cuts are to maintain proper airflow in the JK. DV8 Offroad with the help of Chrysler engineers determined the proper airflow required to keep your Jeeps HVAC system working at peak performance. Make sure when mounting that the tabs are to the left(drivers side)

The bumper mounting was a breeze thanks to the precision one piece design. All eight mounting points lined up perfectly the first time. Don't forget the spacer plate between the rear crossmember and and the bumper though, we did! The fix was easy enough, but without it your bumper with be dangerously close to the body. Take a close look at your bumper after mounting, you'll probably need to center it a bit. If you do, loosen the crossmember bolts completely but leave them in place. Slightly loosen the frame bolts and slowly manipulate the bumper to where you want it. Then tighten everything back up.

The swing out carrier mounts easily to the bumper. First grease both of your tapered bearings with a high quality grease. Then insert the larger bearing into the lower side of the carrier(it only goes one way) and place the dust cover. Then you are going to gently palce the carrier onto the bumper mount and palce the top bearing. Next place the nut on top and gently secure. Only tighten enough to take out any lateral play in the carrier and place the cotter pin and top dust cover.

Securing the swing out to the body is a little slower, but you'll want to take your time to fine tune this. We found it best to secure the heim joints first to the swing out, then the mountain plate on the tailgate.Now you'll have to slowly open and close the tailgate to fine tune your adjustment. To fine tune this you can make a turn on the heim joints and adjust the rear bumper (located on the mountain plate). Finally it is time to install your spare tire. You can adjust height based on your tire size.


Taking the RS2 on the road
Well we've had the bumper now for about one month. The first compliments actually came from my wife who steals the JK at every chance to go out and do whatever she does. In Socal we have what are called "Santa Ana" winds. These seasonal winds blow though our mountain passes into the valleys at horrendous speeds. My wife stated she loved the one handed opening of the tailgate while loading her monthly Costco run. I guess trying to manipulate a separate swing out and tailgate could prove tricking in 60 mph winds.Maybe DV8 is on to something here???

My next little jaunt was a picture hunting trip with my son around the Salton Sea. While bouncing down the highway at 80 mph I did develop a little rattle. A couple of wrenches and a "double-double" later we were back in service sitting in a "In and Out" parking lot.Our first stop was painted canyon just east of Mecca California. It's a prehistoric looking area with tight slot canyons and smooth sand. My adjustments at In and Out worked, rattle free though 5 miles of washboard.Next it was off to the hills around Galmis North and a little stop to Bombay Beach on the east side of the Salton Sea, a freakish little town almost swallowed bt the Salton Sea years ago. Definitely worth a visit.

Our last visit was a trip to Crafts peak, a secret little hidaway above the Arctic circle on the way to big bear. A steep and rocky climb up to the 8300" mark with a couple of TJ friends. At the top is a small of camber parking area where we stopped for refreshments. Being on a side hill the one handed opening I can say came in very handy. Again rattle free on a very loose and rocky climb.

Pictures

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Conclusion
DV8 Offroad has produced a nicely priced and highly engineered product.The smooth operation of the tailgate and carrier seem almost like it was original equipment.The convenience of the one handed opening can't be understated. You don't realize how nice it is on a side hill or flat ground for that matter to have that second hand available.The workmanship and the textured powder coat have drawn many compliments.The robust design will easily accomodate a larger tire and some extra hardware.I think the RS2 will provide us with many years of trouble free operation.Definitely worth worth a look,


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