Posts by WJ Owners


Shawn G.

Installed your hidden winch plate (still waiting for the winch, but the plate is in). With installing this, I noticed the recovery hook mounts don't allow one leg to attach to the plate. I cut this leg off and attached the mounts. Added to these mounts is the mount for my grille guard. The plate actually spreads the guard mounts out a 1/2" on either side. I bought new hardware, added a nut to fill the space, trimmed the grille guard to snug it up to the winch plate and managed to get it all to come together. The grille guard has a plastic face that covers the winch plate opening. Due to age, the cover actually lifts up and down. Making your hidden winch plate even more hidden. James Bond material! Looking forward to getting the winch!


Juergen M.
Kratos review with 36" tire
1.) Instructions are detailed enough and good, descriptive, to the point.
The recommended drill hole sizes require bit sizes that where not included in either of my 2 drill bit sets. I went with a 3/8 instead of 7/16, and used a step drill bit for the 9/16. If you pre drill the top of the hatch while its open, you can then close the hatch and finish the holes from the top with the step bit.

2.) difficulty level: 5
It is easy to mark the holes based on the brackets. However, it is intimidating to drill holes into your hatch. There is no turning back once you start.

3.) built quality is very good. Solid welds and oversized parts.

4.) mounting hardware is of good quality

5.) this is an absolutely solid mounting solution. I watched the tire when turning and hitting potholes, I did not see even the slightest motion of the tire/flex of the carrier.

6.) the struts have no problem lifting my 90lbs tire up by themselves. Once the hatch is open, my 5 year old can hang from the hatch and it won't come down. I would like to see the tire mount further down towards the license plate. The struts can take the shift of weight. Getting the assembly closer to the glass would also be a nice touch. Those two points are no big deal and totally personal preference.


Drew D. 
An honest review of the Kratos tire carrier:

Install: Pretty straightforward and the instructions are clear. I highly recommend getting a friend to help you. Pro tip, strap your hatch to the roof rails when installing the struts. (I royally messed this up) I second the previous post about using a step drill bit, it made things a bit easier, no pun intended.

Quality: Definitely heavy duty. If I had one complaint it would be the "precision" in which these were fabricated. I requested mine to come only primered with half the mind to paint it to match the body, after receiving it and seeing the welds I thought it would be best to cover it with bed liner. Some of the mounting plates took some convincing to line up, the metal plate that holds the tire is slightly crooked, and the studs were very tight on a 5x5 wheel. I understand this was a preorder so I didn't expect that everything would be prefect.

Use: The lift gate is very heavy for the first foot before the struts can kick in. (Prior to that they cannot get enough leverage on the gate) Once they kick in they do their job and lift the hatch. I have no fear of the it coming down on me.

Costumer service: This is where HK Off-road shines. It's kick ass to have the owner of the company only a text or phone call away. When I accidentally broke one of the stud mounts during install they had a new one out to me the next day. I applaud them for solving problems WJ owners face with a limited aftermarket. I couldn't be happier to have an empty trunk and this is by far the most weight efficient way to get the spare out of your trunk and on the back of your jeep. I'm happy to buy from a small home grown American company and would buy from them again.

 I just finished installing one of your hidden winch mounts, with D ring mounts. First off, your phone call, letting me know that my mount was sitting on my front porch, was entirely unexpected. You sir are very good at customer support. All the texts to keep me updated on powder coat and shipping -outstanding!
The product - the welds are baby smooth. The holes machined to perfection. The fit is as good or better than most factory parts. Your instructions, on PDF, are perfect for using a mobile phone or tablet, while you are in the driveway or garage. The instructions are clear and concise, along with the detailed pictures.
The overall experience with you and your product is the best I have ever experienced.
I hope to be able to purchase more of your products in the future, i.e. maybe a gatekeeper....or some new rock sliders...or maybe that spare tire mount you're working on!!

I got it all installed... looks great, fit perfect, easy to install.
I was able to install a Smittybilt XRC 9500 P/N 97495, and I clocked the gear-case 1 increment or 36 degrees.
You have permission to use my photos and comments.
Let me know if you want any of the pictures in higher resolution.
Happy 4-Wheelin,
Trevor L.

Due to a heavy work schedule and a few creative engineering feats to get this big winch in here, its all complete. Spooled the rope on this weekend and cant wait to use it in some recoveries.

Thanks for the help guys, the winch plate went together smoothly, no issues there. 

I was able to fit the control box of my Smittybilt X20 to fit behind the grill mounted on the winch. Good bit of grinding with the Dremel on the backside to make it happen. Cut out two sections of grill to access the clutch lever on one side and the plug/switch on the other. Love the mount guys! Best option out there IMHO — in Salt Lake City, Utah.

 Bellied up on a rock, good think my WJ was HK equipped! It was a hard pull, my 9500lb winch was slowing waaay down (probably needed a snatch block)! Great product guys, I think the winch would fail before your mount would! — in Five Mile Pass

 Couldn't be happier with how my HK off-road hidden winch setup came out!

Install was quite easy. Fabrication was spot on.

HK off-road or nothing for the WJ!!