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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-28-2005, 12:05 PM Thread Starter
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Question New mods advice/help

Hey, I'm looking at making a couple of new mods to the truck (2003 DC Prerunner) and was looking for a little advice or help.

I've been looking into exhaust lately, I've kinda narrowed it down to either Borla or Gibson, but can't seem to find any type of dyno information that is trustworthy about the numbers. I tow a camping trailer quite regularly so I'm looking for added torque mostly, but no ricer burner sound.

Also, I have been toying with the idea of a lift and larger tires. I have been reading about the Cornfed set-up and like the simplicity of the system. My truck is mostly street driven with the occasional play time. I still need to leave as much towing capacity as possible for the reasons stated above. I was thinking the 2" or 3" lift with the same 31" tires, just maybe a wider footprint. Mud terrains or All terrains are what I've looked at so far. At what point do I need new shocks and diff. spacers for the lift? What is the widest tire I could run with the stock suspension and rims?

Can anyone give me any suggestions or comments based on what they have used/seen... Also, any type of soundclips would be great. I've heard the ones on the 4-runner link that everyone uses, but I was looking for a few more if possible. Pictures with a suspension set up like I mentioned would be great too.

I'm in no rush, so time isn't any factor in this. I want to get the most for my money.

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I appreciate the help! Thanks in advance.

Last edited by LSUTacoma; 02-28-2005 at 12:24 PM.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-28-2005, 04:17 PM
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I'm kinda a newb to the Tacos, but I've modded every truck I've owned over the last 15 years, including SAS and many large lifts. This is the first Taco I've ever had, and I'm looking forward to doing basic mods to it yet still keeping it streetworthy while comfortable. I've looked at a ton of these trucks with a variety of different mods, and driven many of those. Thus far, based on what you're looking for, which is extremely similar to what I'm doing to my truck, I'd say go for the following:

A solid pair of coilovers, be they the OME, Hoes, or Camburgs ( I recommend the upper arms w/uniball joint)--this combo gives you the lift in the front pretty well, while not requiring significant alteration to your driveline components and/or suspension mounting. It also performs quite well on the street. The four I've driven with this setup all had Hoes save one with OMEs, but I've heard nothing but similar results from the Cams. OMEs require some trim packing but it seems pretty simple. I've chosen Hoes and Cam's arms for simplicity and performance. This will provide me with a small amount of lift, better performance on and off road (even while towing), and will provide flexibility when and if I decide to go further with modifications to suspension components.

A Deaver leaf pack (8 leaf minimum since you tow and have a DC), this will give you a decent lift in the rear using your existing mounts. The shocks I'd use would be the Bilstein 5100s. The aforementioned trucks with the Hoes and OMEs had similar setups in the rear, one having the full Deaver 8pack, one with an AAL, and the rest had custom combinations (used an old leaf set from a donor truck to make a custom one). All of the trucks felt similarly in the rear end, except the one with OMEs had some sort of Fabtec shocks I hadn't seen yet, but it rode OK, definitely not like the Bils. One also had the Bil 5150s, they didn't feel as nice, but it was negligible at best. As for your towing, another option I have looked at is just using the AAL, it adds 500lbs to capacity, but definitely made the ride stiffer without any weight in the back, so be aware that if you do get an AAL, it'll likely feel way different to you in the back, but perform nicely when towing or hauling.

A mod you simply must do for performance is the deckplate. I drove trucks with all sorts of intakes on them and not one drove any differently than the two I drove with deckplates. I installed the 6in. deckplate a week and a half ago, it felt just like two of them with mega expensive (in my book for a damned air filter!) FIPKs. I also put the KN drop in filter in the box, didn't see a change from the Toy one, but for cheap maintenance I'll leave it in for now till I notice any dirt getting by. I would save money there and skip the fancy intakes and filters, just get a 15 dollar deckplate and spend a half hour cutting the hole, it's worth it. While others don't have similar results to post about it, I have definitely seen a difference in performance and sound. I wouldn't estimate any hp gains, but I will say that my midrange acceleration is higher, the truck climbs the hills in the valleys out here (southern Cal) a tad better when weighted with cargo.

Of the trucks I've looked at, the most common exhaust setup was the Gibson, but I did see some Borlas and Magnaflows, all cat-back and no headers, so it was a pretty fair comparison for me. I liked the Magnas sound the best, and the TRD's cat-back sound was a close second. All had similar performance increases, which were minimal at best. The owners were pretty unanimous that they saw little improvement over stock setups other than sound.

As for tires, with the above suspensions, 3 ran stock setups with just under 2" of lift on the Hoes, one ran 32" with the full 2.5" lift up front, and had some rubbing, emphasis on some (usually at full turn, sometimes at moderate steering input on bumps), so I'd say you're best to stick with stock size, maybe a different tread for better trac. Otherwise you'll be looking at more significant suspension parts to lift even higher, which changes many of the other components (i.e. longer travel shocks, relocating the mounts in back, etc.).

My disclaimer to all of this is basically summed up in the first sentence, I am definitely a newb to the Tacos, but not new to the concept of modding a truck to enhance what I use it for. There are plenty of other Tacoveterans on here that will likely have different opinions, hopefully they'll chime in for you and give you their experience. Another piece of advice would be to locate an offroad club in your area, there's likely to be a few Tacos in there that people are just dying to talk about (funny thing about this truck, everyone's ready to give you all the info they've got).
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 05:47 AM Thread Starter
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Wow, thanks for all the info. That is the type of stuff I was looking for, ride quality, etc... I don't see enough off road time to justify going with a wild suspension set up. Just looking for a little extra ground clearance and a tougher look, without sacrificing the ride too much.
Thanks again, I'm going to a little more research into some of the brands you mentioned and see what all they offer.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 03:31 PM
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No sweat, my friend. I'm new around here, but I've been researching/reading all through these threads, and sought out a bunch of people to figure out exactly what you're trying to do. It obviously depends on what you're really wanting out of it, which based on your last post is precisely what I'm going for. I don't crawl or mud in this truck, I usually just run desert fire roads and backcountry logging trails which can be technical in areas, requiring the extra lift and some travel, but overall just looking for that smooth ride on and off street with a bi*chin look to it. Thought I'd help a little and prevent you from re-inventing the wheel.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-01-2005, 08:05 PM
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Definately get the ToyTec spacer lift ( ), they have much much better customer service, and you will get your parts shipped next day, instead of 1.5 months later with cornfed.

Also, 32" Tires will work with 3" of lift no rubbing at all. On the stock 16x7" alloys, a 265/75/16 is a perfect size for 3" (31.6"). If you want the full 32", get some 15x8" rims, and run 32x11.5x15 tires.

1999 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4x4 E-Locked
Donahoe Extended Coilovers & Camburg UCA's ~
OME 891 & Icon Resi's ~ 285/75/16 Yokohama A/T-S
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-02-2005, 06:13 AM Thread Starter
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I'm sitting here looking at the Toy Tec Deluxe lifts, the one with the longer Pro Comp shocks. Which is the better riding shock... the 1000 Soft Ride or the 3000 Firm Ride? Also, is it better to go ahead and go with the Ultimate lift and get the differnential drop kit? Or is this really needed with my truck? I really like the look of the trucks that they have pictured on the site, even the ones with stock tires look tougher with the lifts.

Also, found these for a good price... any comments on the tires?


Last edited by LSUTacoma; 03-02-2005 at 10:08 AM.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-04-2005, 12:01 PM
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The add a leafs will definitely make a tougher ride on road, that much I know, just helped a neighbor install a set on his DC PreRunner and he does not like the new ride at all, I think it really stiffens things up a bit, and washboard ruts on roads make the back end bounce quite a bit more.
I don't see the need for the diff drop if you're 2wd.
Spacers, as felt on trucks that have them, stiffen the front proportionally (i.e. more spacing, stiffer), and reduce the travel of the front suspension, which is already pretty low at 8" stock (4 up and 4 down as far as I can tell), so I'm gonna avoid that. Coilovers increase your travel, but at a higher cost (significantly).
Basically, you're gonna get what you pay for, if you just want the look and don't care about stiffness, you can lift quite a bit for cheap, but if you wanna go up in both height and feel, you're gonna go up in price.
The Buckshots are noisy, but they're real nice in the soup. I had buckshots on my chevy.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2005, 07:43 PM
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A differental drop is not needed on PreRunners, its only for 4x4 because of the CV joint, without the drop it will mess the angle of the CV up.

99 Toyota Tacoma PreRunner, 2.7L 4cyl. TRD.
3" Body lift, 32x11.50 BFG AT
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