Body Lift? I don't want to....but maybe? - TTORA Forum
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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-27-2008, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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Body Lift? I don't want to....but maybe?

Well after installing my sliders, I discovered that it's not the sliders that move and damage your pinchwelds, it's your body....especially when you have really old body bushings that sag and bounce. I thought that my truck seemed a to sit a little low on the frame compared to most Tacos, and I was right.

If I were to replace the body bushings, I know I would clear the sliders, no problem. I have plenty of room in the much lighter, and not sagging rear of the truck. It's in the front that the body has sagged in relation to the frame, and the pinchwelds contact the sliders.

But at this point, I have an opportunity to body lift; and I need to decide just whether or not I'm going to do it, because I was actually going to buy some steel very soon to start building myself a rear bumper. If I do a body lift, then I need to do it before i ever build the bumpers.

I'm thinking 1-2", with 1 being more preferable. Here's what I've thought about so far:

Pros:
A higher body less vulnerable to the rocks
Possibility of larger tires, say 35s? (would require larger lift)
Cool factor (Meh...it would take a lot more to make mine actually cool)
Maybe clock the transfer case, raise some shit up?

Cons:
A higher body with a higher center of gravity, and more tippy
Leaves ugly gap on my rock sliders that I so carefully placed to be tucked up into the body real nice like.
I've heard they're prone to failure
Requires several modifications to make a functioning, nice-looking vehicle
Seems like a difficult install

What are your opinions? I want to hear them. BTW, the main reason that it's even being considered probably is for 35" tires if I got my hands on a set. Also, to be honest, I wouldn't mind the truck being a tad bit taller.
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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-27-2008, 11:27 PM
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I have the 2" 4crawler offroad kit. They are easy as hell to install, but i dont think they will get you to 35's. I have yet to hear about the kit i have failing on anybody to date.

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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-27-2008, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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I have 3" suspension lift already...and it seems like I could stuff them in there like I did with my 33s when it was sitting at stock height as it stands now... I think they might possibly make it with another 2" on the 3 I already have. I think that's what Fondigley is running.
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-27-2008, 11:36 PM
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Alex is running a 3 inch body lift and i believe 3 inches of suspension. he also has quite a bit of rubbing. It can be done though. i would talk to him about if he thinks it is worth the trouble.

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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 12:45 AM
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I know that for jeeps you can buy longer poly bushings (not add on pucks) that completely replace the stock rubber body bushings and provide an extra 1/2 -1" of lift. You might see if these exist for tacos as they have the advantage of upgrading the bushing itself and do not shift as much as an ad on puck.

In addition you still want to consider all of the little bullshit items that might have to be lengthened/moved/clearenced to work with the bodylift such as groundwires, fan shrouds, steering column, shifters, wiring etc. Correcting these issues is normally more work than installing the pucks/bushings themselves.

If you can find a set of instructions for a bodylift or talk to someone who has done a bodylift on your model of truck (same year, tranny ect) then you could get an idea of the labor involved.

ps- the center of gravity issue isn't as big of a deal as you think considering that most of your weight is in the frame and running gear and that isn't being lifted
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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
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Well after installing my sliders, I discovered that it's not the sliders that move and damage your pinchwelds, it's your body....especially when you have really old body bushings that sag and bounce.
I disagree with this. When I originally saw this discussion I was skeptical, but up on chinamans wall I fell on a rock (hard) and discovered a little tweaking in the pinch weld right above a couple of my slider legs. Mind you it wasn't all of them, only the front 2-3. I would think that if my body bushings flexed the 1" necessary to make contact, it would be more than just the front portion. I could be wrong, it happens, but the theory of the frame flexing a little seems more likely in my case.


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Cons:
Requires several modifications to make a functioning, nice-looking vehicle
Seems like a difficult install
First, body lifts are simple. Everything I've read suggests so, and after seeing them on my 85 I don't see any major complications when lifting a small amount.

I was considering this some time back for my 02 and from what I've read, when talking about 1" nothing needs to be extended (steering, fuel filler, shifters, etc), when going up to 2" it's close, 3" these sorts of things are required. This is only from my research tho, not first hand experience.

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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 09:05 AM
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If it will allow you to move up a couple inches in tire size - like 33 - 34+/35, and that's what you want, then I'd say go for it. I'm pretty sure quite a few people are running 1-2" BL's on the older Tacos (Spindleshanks for one).

Like Doug says - stay under 2" if possible to avoid complicating other components.

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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 09:08 AM
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1-2" body lift won't get you near enough for 35's (aside from wheeling 35's on IFS just not being a great idea in the first place). It will make sure you can fully take advantage of your wide 33's though. Remember, IFS lifts don't gain you clearance for bigger tires - the bumpstop is still in the same place, the tire still wants to stuff to the same degree! Getting the fenders out of the way is what allows for bigger tires.

The COG moves less with a body lift than a suspension lift as willie said. The body is really pretty light compared to the frame and drivetrain on our trucks.

I have never heard of any issues with QUALITY body lifts, plenty of issues with homebrewed bodylifts. Check out www.4crawler.com for all kinds of info on bodylifts.

A bodylift also raises the possiblity of a drivetrain lift, where you raise the drivetrain in relation to your frame and gain more ground clearance and get stuff tucked up where it's better protected.

I wish I had done a bodylift before I built all my armor.

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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:03 AM
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I wish I had done a bodylift before I built all my armor.
Yeah but the look on people's faces when you run crazy stuff looking all stock is worth it...

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How many people do you think it'd take to hold Molly down while we cut off a limb? I'm guessing alot, plus ratchet straps, c-clamps, and other misc tools
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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:21 AM
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IFirst, body lifts are simple. Everything I've read suggests so, and after seeing them on my 85 I don't see any major complications when lifting a small amount.

I was considering this some time back for my 02 and from what I've read, when talking about 1" nothing needs to be extended (steering, fuel filler, shifters, etc), when going up to 2" it's close, 3" these sorts of things are required. This is only from my research tho, not first hand experience.
Having done a couple of body lifts I would agree with this. The ones we did were 3" and did require lengthening somethings, including the steering rod from wheel to steering gear box.

Other than that, the hardest part of a body lift is getting the mounting bolts removed and getting jacks under it to lift it up.
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post #11 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 11:05 AM
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Both Jeremy and me have 2" lifts on our trucks. The kit from 4 crawler came with the steering extension, front bumper bracket, and radiator relocation brackets. I had to install these, and extend the fuel fill line by simply losening the slip mounting and sliding it up. I did not extend my shifters, but had to modify the boots/make a new boot with a tire innertube. I now have now problems with anything. The lift took about 3 hrs to install by myself, and then an additional hour working out the shifter. I think it is a great mod as it allows me to clear my tires with chains at full compression. It also has allowed my sliders to be mounted higer with more clearance between them and the cab. When i add bumpers i will get addidional clearance at these places also. The only major drawback it that there is no reall good way to raise your rear bumper, but if you are going aftermarket/custom this is not a problem.

As for the drive train lift, that is what i originally wanted to do, but i have found that you cant with a two piece drive shaft. Which is what extra cab tacos come with.

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post #12 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 12:17 PM
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Take the time to fully read the install instructions at 4Crawler.com, and it's the easiest job in the world. If you opt for more than 1", then you'll need the radiator drop and steering extensions.

I've wheeled my truck hard (not smart) for two years now with a 2" 4Crawler body lift. I was always paranoid that it would shift, but it hasn't. Even after the jump I accidentally did a couple weeks ago, in which my camper shell slid forward an inch, the body and bed mounts DID NOT MOVE AT ALL. They are frikking locked into place solidly, and not because I torqued the shit out of the bolts, but because I followed the install directions to the letter.

My whole kit, including shipping, all the accessory bracketry, and and upgraded (grade 8) hardware, the whole kit cost about $187. I think if you're trying to get a little bit more clearance for tires, there is no better investment than the body lift.

Note, I never installed any bed supports, and I question their necessity. I bought lift lips to cover the gap in the front wheelwells, but never installed the ones in the rear, because the gap allows me to clean the undercarriage easily when there's lots of mud involved. My rear bumper is still at stock height, and my custom bumper and sliders were built to fit the body lift.

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post #13 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 12:52 PM
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Pros:
A higher body less vulnerable to the rocks you have sliders now.
Possibility of larger tires, say 35s? (would require larger lift)meh...cut not lift. Undercarriage remains our limiting factor.
Cool factor (Meh...it would take a lot more to make mine actually cool)Meh!
Maybe clock the transfer case, raise some shit up?IMHO this is the only good reason, but why not move the floor panels around instead? You'd have a low roof and a high belly.

Cons:
A higher body with a higher center of gravity, and more tippynot so much...CG is no more than a couple inches higher, vertical CG is normally assumed to be the top of the bellhousing. Worry more about stuff hitting the roof harder.
Leaves ugly gap on my rock sliders that I so carefully placed to be tucked up into the body real nice like.Reason #eleventybillion not to body lift.
I've heard they're prone to failureOnly if you use the Grade 5 garbage provided with some kits. Use Grade 8 or Bowmalloy and you'll be set.

What are your opinions? I want to hear them. BTW, the main reason that it's even being considered probably is for 35" tires if I got my hands on a set. Also, to be honest, I wouldn't mind the truck being a tad bit taller.
Well, ya asked...here's my opinion...in the end your ground clearance depends on your frame, not the body, so who cares about the body? In every case except the one where you're leasing the truck, trimming the body to fit around the drivetrain and tire is a better solution than spacing the body away from everything. A body lift is really just a tiny version of "tires below the frame cuz I can't run a sawzall"...it's used to get tires away from the rear corner of the front wheel well (and the front bumper, on a lot of new Toyotas), and in some cases get the top of the tire off the core/battery/etc. support during full compression.

Some sheetmetal, some C25 and some thin wire and we can carve it up to fit just about anything, the limit is the front of your door hinge and how much you're willing to relocate from the engine compartment elsewhere. The beauty is, you get a low roofline, you can still tuck the tummy, and you can stuff up to a 35" tire (or a 34x10 LTB) without rubbing, and it looks like it's stock if you coat the wheel well with Herculiner when it's finished.

It takes about a day per wheel well. The floor (if you want to clock anything, dunno how it would work in your truck) takes longer since obviously you need to remove the seats and carpet.

-Sean
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post #14 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 12:53 PM
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never installed the ones in the rear, because the gap allows me to clean the undercarriage easily when there's lots of mud involved.
Whoda thunk that?!?!?


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post #15 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 03:44 PM
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I'm trying to stay as low as possible. 40's and 5" of lift make the tires rub big time so it's been cutting alot of sheetmetal to make them fit. I could have added a 2-3" body lift and had to cut alot less but I didn't want an 8" lifted truck It's plenty tall on 5" and 40's (about 12" extra tire from stock so 6" of extra lift from just the tires )
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post #16 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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I disagree with this. When I originally saw this discussion I was skeptical, but up on chinamans wall I fell on a rock (hard) and discovered a little tweaking in the pinch weld right above a couple of my slider legs. Mind you it wasn't all of them, only the front 2-3. I would think that if my body bushings flexed the 1" necessary to make contact, it would be more than just the front portion. I could be wrong, it happens, but the theory of the frame flexing a little seems more likely in my case.




First, body lifts are simple. Everything I've read suggests so, and after seeing them on my 85 I don't see any major complications when lifting a small amount.

I was considering this some time back for my 02 and from what I've read, when talking about 1" nothing needs to be extended (steering, fuel filler, shifters, etc), when going up to 2" it's close, 3" these sorts of things are required. This is only from my research tho, not first hand experience.
My body moves... My sliders sit just BARELY under the pinchweld in the front. When I drive around, over very small bumps, I can hear the body contact them. Also, there is more of a gap between them on a warmer day than a colder day.... When the clearances are tight, such as in my case, you can tell exactly what's going on.

In your case, it's very likely your frame flexed. And that's possible on anything. But when I get contact just driving down the road, it's the body moving.
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post #17 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:02 PM
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I am going with a 1" Body lift, to compensate for 33x12.5s I do not want to cut my pretty truck too much

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post #18 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:11 PM
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That is the option, cut or body lift for bigger tires. Some people dont want to cut their trucks others dont mind. for clearance over your sliders you could cut the pinch weld, or do a small body lift.

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post #19 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:23 PM Thread Starter
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I am going with a 1" Body lift, to compensate for 33x12.5s I do not want to cut my pretty truck too much
Pshh....I ran those at stock height....granted that I didn't run them very well, I stil ran them...
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post #20 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-28-2008, 10:37 PM
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but with your current lift your stuff position remains the same. so you should be running them the same with hard off roading.

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post #21 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 08:35 AM
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Yeah, hey, if you cut enough, you can clear any tires you want! And hey, while you're at it, why not just remove your fenders and bed altogether?! Cut your doors off!

That's ridiculous.

A body lift is easy, simple, and proven effective. It's a known procedure, tested thousands of times by thousands of experienced, satisfied Toyota offroad enthusiasts.
By comparison, each cutting job is different and, if I may say so, experimental and dangerous. If you start cutting into your sheet metal, you could end up being very unhappy with the results. And guess what, unlike a body lift, cutting isn't reversible.
I understand Volcom's concern about center of gravity in his extreme situation, but let's be realistic here: your truck has only 3" of suspension lift (realistically it's only 2.5"). An additional 1" of body lift is not gonna cause your truck to have rollover tendencies.

And Sean, while I admire your willingness and ability to cut away material, I think that it's a procedure for extreme rock rigs or teenagers with beat up old XJs. Some people think body lifts are an amateur way to clear bigger tires, but when I see a truck with cut-up fenders, it sure looks ghetto to me.

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post #22 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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but with your current lift your stuff position remains the same. so you should be running them the same with hard off roading.
Yeah, but it's not very often I will hit the bumpstop while taking a hard turn, especially with 650+ lb progressive rate springs in the front. I can stuff them all the way up as long as the steering wheel isn't more than 1 turn away from center without any problem. The front also has a spacer on top of the whole coil assembly, making it even harder to bottom. I've hit speed bumps at 40 in this truck, and I don't think I've ever hit the bumpstop...which is about the only position it ever rubbed before, since I carved the inside of the fenders. Also, it doesn't come as high in the rear because of the shackles. They make the springs have to go much further negative than they really want to. The tire just barely kissed the fender in the rear when I purposely did the biggest flex I possibly could at Carnage...which by the way, with my setup in the rear, was huge.

Man, I've had to explain that a lot. You guys that like to tell me that I have rubbing problems, because you have been told I should, and are just jealous, because you bought the little tires...
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post #23 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 09:46 AM
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And Sean, while I admire your willingness and ability to cut away material, I think that it's a procedure for extreme rock rigs or teenagers with beat up old XJs. Some people think body lifts are an amateur way to clear bigger tires, but when I see a truck with cut-up fenders, it sure looks ghetto to me.
Depends on the cut, if you did the bushwhacker cutouts on a tacoma it looks good and gives more room, or like the TJ flares and trimmed out fenders on my YJ I put on for more tire clearance with less lift. Depends on how picky you are with doing it. You can make it look good or you can do a hack job.

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post #24 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 11:15 AM
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your tires are not any taller than mine.

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post #25 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 12:13 PM Thread Starter
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3" wider, however.... It's not the diameter that kills ya for rubbing, it's the width. Plus you have a body lift already, so you're fine. I'll do a 2" body lift, and test fit some 35s....I think I can make it happen. What used to be my "big 33s" look tiny in the wheel wells now.
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post #26 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 12:55 PM
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Yeah, hey, if you cut enough, you can clear any tires you want! And hey, while you're at it, why not just remove your fenders and bed altogether?! Cut your doors off!
Now tell me how ya really feel Jeremy! Don't worry, you'll find no Wellsville hack jobs here.

Dangerous? Potentially. Likely less so than drop brackets and body lifts. Experimental? Not really...but not very common, either. A properly executed trim should be unnoticeable except when the trim location is compared to a stock truck. For smaller tires, that may mean no more than removing the spot-welded flange and replacing the flange with a bead. Usually the plastic fender liner can be reinstalled, and the cut is no longer evident...but wheel well volume is improved enough to fit the new tires. We did this several times on my truck...the stock fenders and fender flares never changed, but the truck could take a 35" tire. Similar, less invasive work is not unrealistic to clear a 33" or 34" tire, lock to lock, at full compression...which is where you need it. Being unable to reach full compression when the truck is completely crossed up means you're not getting all the wheel travel you could--your spring rate is too high, springs are too short, or both--and assuming the wheel will be mostly straight over all the hard stuff is silly. Eventually you'll need to turn and climb a bank, and the tires will rub...unless your springs are too stiff or simply the wrong length for your ride height.

Similarly, changing the ride height via the lower control arm angle should be only one of many means to the end of greater wheel travel and more supple suspension, vs an attempt to keep larger tires from rubbing the stock body or frame. The point of trimming isn't necessarily to start building a truggy.

Keeping suspension and tire fitment completely separate allows an owner to tune their suspension without making compromises for tires too large for the wheel well, not to mention allowing tire choice to be dictated by engine and drivetrain vs lift height or fender opening.

That's why I advocate trimming, as much as necessary and as little as possible, to fit a tire vs simply moving everything up with a body lift. Sure, they work, so do drop brackets, shackle lifts, shackle flips below the rail, SAS leaf or control arm mounts hung low...all see plenty of trail time. But, each one of those solutions requires a handling compromise, whereas a simple trim does nothing but allow fitment of a larger tire. It's part of why you'll occasionally find me saying "stop worrying about lift".

-Sean
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post #27 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 12:59 PM
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Now tell me how ya really feel Jeremy! Don't worry, you'll find no Wellsville hack jobs here.
Nice Ohio reference!

Jeremy's just upset because that trimmed area is less for him to keep clean/waxed, makes him feel less needed.

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post #28 of 50 (permalink) Old 04-29-2008, 02:06 PM
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I must be slacking, cause I just saw this thread. Yeah I got 3" BL on my rig. It was tough to fit the 35's, but they fit. Pretty easy to install as others have said. I thought I might have to do more moding that I have done to make it work. Reading the instructions on 4crawlers site helped. I took the laptop out to the garage to review articles and instructions while I did it. It helped being able to see others work and the detailed pics. Now that I have done it, I could do it no problem again.

I read the article about tucking the drivetrain up, but don't think that will work for my rig.

I just decided I wanted 35's and this seemed like a better solution for me, since I already had some suspension lift, than scraping it for a new solution. I have had some rubbing issues, but trying to fix those as we speak. Hopefully got most of it done, just need to get the tires off the frame when steering is completed maxed out.

Now go lift that truck up some more.

Black quad cab TRD, moded inside and out, locked up on 35's, capable of getting there and back.
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post #29 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-14-2008, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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Buying the 4 crawler 3" kit... with a front bumper bracket, radiator drop and steering extension. I'm getting new bushings from 4WP...since its the same thing for a lot cheaper. I think 4 crawler gets them from the same place and puts a markup on them.
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post #30 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-14-2008, 11:15 PM
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3"? I thought you were leaning toward the 1. Now you are doing the totally opposite. Oh well. It will be sweet. Let me know if you want a hand installing it. If I am available I'd be glad to give you a hand since I just did mine a few months ago.

Black quad cab TRD, moded inside and out, locked up on 35's, capable of getting there and back.
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