Warn Trans4mer on Silverado 2500HD or any other

I’m looking at winches for my 07 2500HD Classic. I’m going with a Come Up Seal 12.5, but I need a way to mount it. I’m considering the Warn Trans4mer Mount. I don’t need the weight of a bumper and I like that the winch is accessible to work on and keep the line dressed. It does hang the weight out a little further than a recessed mount, but I think there are more pros than cons. Has anyone used a Trans4mer mount for some significant winching? How is it working for you? I know they look pretty, but does it cut the mustard?

Update:

The Warn mount is expensive, but probably very well engineered and built. It has foot forward or foot down options.

The Westin mount is significantly less expensive, but only has foot down mounting.

New contender is the Fab Fours mount.
Fab Fours
Fully welded one piece construction with foot forward or foot down mounting, but their website lists it as weighing 175 pounds.
 
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grantfurness

New member
I bought one once, and it didn’t fit the truck at all. Some of the pieces were so far off I had to go to the steel yard to get material to remake them on my own since calling them didn’t produce any help. Never bought a warn anything since. But there aren’t a lot of choices outside of bumpers.
 

1stDeuce

Explorer
I've not used either, but many of the Ford municipal trucks here run the Westin winch mount setup. I've looked them over, and they're mounted solidly, and the welds look good to me. I have the same truck as you, and there are no "hidden" winch mounts that fit it as far as I know. I have read that the Rough Country 1500 kit can be adapted to fit, but I prefer the winch to be a little more accessible.

I'd look into the Westin setup if you don't like the Warn system.


 

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I have an ‘02 2500 HD with the Transformer. So far so good, but haven’t done any serious pulls with it yet. The grill guard/winch mount went on with no issues...can’t say the same for the light bar. Poorly designed and sloppily manufactured. Price wise, be sure to shop around. The grill guard/winch tray/light bar came from a small Cali company (don’t remember the name) and the headlight brush guards from Summit; all deeply discounted compared to Amazon, 4WP, etc. Price wise, Warn is quite spendy so search around, most retailers sell you and then have Warn drop ship the purchase.

I had an ARB bull bar on my Dodge and it was a fine piece of equipment, much better construction and installation guide. (Pic in my sig) Looks wise, those bumpers sit quite proud and even more so on the GMs. I didn’t like the look so decided give this set-up a try. The ARB looks more overlandy, the Warn more utility. YMMV
4ED55747-9F49-4A76-8BBE-5C06F5B5D3A2.jpeg
 

jbaucom

New member
No experience with the Warn Trans4mer, but the Westin Max winch tray is a very similar concept and is what I used to mount a winch on my F150. It's solid and does what it's supposed to do. If it's available for your application, you might want to look into it. Mine was about $200 new, which isn't much more than half the price of the Warn.
 

dddonkey

Adventurer
I had one on my 2003HD and really liked it. I too did not need the weight of a full bumper, the install was easy. I did not get the headlight wrap arounds just the center piece, I would do it again with that style of truck.
 
I’ve been looking at the Westin since it’s been mentioned a couple times. It definitely looks different from the Warn mount, not good or bad, but different. It’s also much less expensive. Their website says it fits most 8k-12k medium frame winches. I know the Warn has an option for winch bolts down or forward depending on the tray ordered. Westin looks like it’s winch bolts down only. Does anyone know if the Come Up 12.5 bolts down or forward?
 

jbaucom

New member
The Westin tray is designed for foot down mounting only. According to comeupwinch.com, the Seal 12.5 is designed for foot forward mounting only.

We quite a few trucks at work running winches. The usual setup is a domestic half-ton with a Westin tray and Warn M8 with wire rope. Three-quarter and one-ton trucks get a Westin tray and Warn Zeon 12 with wire rope. Both are strong, reliable, cost-effective systems. These are rarely used for self-recovery - mostly moving objects from the roadway or right-of-way. With an appropriately rated snatch block, both combinations are sufficient for the truck they're mounted on.
 
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Now looking at the Fab Fours option. Their website says it weighs 175 pounds, but it does have foot forward mounting. I’ve found other listings that say 80 pounds. I can’t tell if it keeps the factory tow hooks.
 
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grantfurness

New member
I had the fab fours winch mount on my 2004 Chevy and I like it a lot. It looks nice and works great. I had to take it off because it made my transmission run too hot because it was blocking the air to the cooler. Something about the shape of it with the shape of the front of the truck it creates a bubble of no air or something. Even with an 800crm 10” fan I couldn’t get air on the cooler to keep the transmission cool. You lose the tow hooks when you install it.
 
I had the fab fours winch mount on my 2004 Chevy and I like it a lot. It looks nice and works great. I had to take it off because it made my transmission run too hot because it was blocking the air to the cooler. Something about the shape of it with the shape of the front of the truck it creates a bubble of no air or something. Even with an 800crm 10” fan I couldn’t get air on the cooler to keep the transmission cool. You lose the tow hooks when you install it.
Which engine and transmission combination? Mine is a 6.0 LQ4 with A 4L80E.
 

1stDeuce

Explorer
FWIW, the ARB bumper on my Duramax truck makes it run hot too, but only when I tow heavy. I'm sure any winch bumper or mount will mess up the airflow some. If you're towing fast and heavy often, you might consider a multi-mount rather than a solid mount...

The other thing worth mentioning is that there's probably a decent amount of junk between the evap condenser and radiator (and intercooler on diesels) on these older trucks. I cleaned about a bucket of corn husks, grass, etc out of mine about 10 years ago. Ran much cooler after that. Thinking I probably need to do it again, as it was hot towing 10k in 90F heat with a 30mph headwind...
 

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1stDeuce

Explorer
The 8.1L w/ Allison. It raised the transmission temp to 200 in the summer without a load. Without the mount the transmission will run at 150.
That's interesting. My Allison has never run that cold in the summer, it always seems to be about 100F above ambient. IMO, 200F is not really "hot" for an auto trans, but it's the start of getting there. I'd be worried if it ran constantly over 250F though.

I notice that if the engine starts to run hot, the trans also warms up. I believe this is because the radiator is shedding heat into the trans cooler loop when the radiator can't cool the fluid and the lower tank heats up. I've thought about adding a second external cooler in place of the radiator cooler, but it's easier to just shift back to 4th and ease off the throttle for a bit, usually to the top of the grade... :)

Either way, blocking air to the front is not helping things out, but it's a tradeoff I'm willing to make to have a winch on the front, and a bumper that should provide some level of continued driveability for the truck if I have an animal strike.
 
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