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668 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I used to own a 2003 Hilux V6 4x4 that I sold -

to get my current hilux detailed below.

Here is my hilux.....

Its a 2007 Dual Cab SR 4x4 D4D auto. This is what she looked like when I got her -

She was a very pretty virgin...if only she knew of the whore that she would become!

Quick Run-down

3" suspension lift
285/75x16 Silverstone MT117 Sports
16x8 Black Dynamic Wheels - zero offset
ARB front locker
Marlin Crawler Crawl-Box with 4.7 XD gears
Xrox front tube bar
Millweld Sliders
Lightforce spotlights

In the 3 years Ive had her Ive done just a couple "small" things to her.....

From the dealership I got the grille colour coded and a snorkel fitted.....from there I sent her to me neighbour Rob who owns The Suspension Centre in Keilor who did the suspension for me.

I fitted a 3" suspension kit....Desert Fox Foam Cell shocks all round...Dobinson Coils up front....factory rear leaves reset in the rear.

Getting suspension fitted

I got some BLING 16x8 mags and 285/75x16 Maxxis Buckshots first off, this was done within the first week.

I didnt like the BLING wheels so I sold them for a set of black Dynamic Wheels 16x8 zero offset and fitted them instead -

Soon after that was an ARB Winch Bar and a TJM engine and transmission bashplate.....I then did an offroad driving course at the Werribee Proving Grounds through work.....

I then got some ARB Brushbars and some lightforce spotlights....heres some flex pics when new -

I then got 2 SR5 sportsbars and fitted them to the tub and got a rack and fitted that ontop of them.

Didnt like the chrome so I got them powdercoated black -

I then had a nasty incident offroad........

got stuck trying to cross a small stream, the hilux dammed the water flowing and it filled up the car as it slowly sank deeper......took us 5 hours of trying to recovery it, with brocken snatch straps and we decided to leave it there till the next day at 9pm -

I had a kind friend help me get it out with his dads 15 tonne excavator the next day.

After my water incident, Im mentally scarred with water crossing of any form now.......

I took her back to Robs workshop and got him to rework the suspension for me..... he readjusted the front as it had sagged abit due to the weight of the bars and he added a rear leaf and reset it all to really well both empty and laden with weight.

I then removed the rear bar, sold the rack, got a tonneau to suit , fitted a HUMEX 3" straight through exhaust with high flow cat and no mufflers (including 3" dump pipe) and bought a set of Silverstone MT117 Sports in 285/75x16...these are BIG 285's...measuring a full 33" x 12 inches wide when new mounted on the rims.

I then got the fabrication bug......made my own lower transfercase protector....heres a pic next to the factory one -

And fitted -

I got sick of my TJM bashplate always hitting things offroad because of its poor design...I contacted TJM head office with some suggestions but they never got back to me so I fabricated my own bashplate design.

The problem lies in these 2 brackets below between the radiator crossmember and engine crossmember....the Prado's dont have them at all so I dont feel they are necessary and hinder offroad performance -

I removed the 2 brackets, got a piece of cardboard and studied how I would make something better.

I moved the cooler pipes that hang down low up about an inch higher in existing holes -

I then used the existing brackets I had removed and measured and cut them to the shape I needed them to be...these will help me both mount the new bashplate and add as support behind it . Below, one cut and one not-

Both cut-

I fitted the TJM bashplate back on to compare the new cut profile the bashplate will have compared to the previous TJM bashplates profile -

I then cut the TJM bashplate up...using the rear portion under the engine I threw the front portion away and fabricated my own out of 3mm steel plate -

The End product -

I alsop cut those tow loops off the front corssmember so they dont hit on anything.

The benefit of my bashplate is that not only does it give you more approach angle, but the first and lowest point of contact is now behind the front edge of the front tyres, so your tyres are starting to climb up and over an obstacle before the bashplate hits it. Since doing this mod, I have not once collected the front edge ......and Ive been through some hairy terrain.

Pic of the under wing plates of the ARB bar that had to be modified for clearance for the 285's -

I made my own recovery hook along the way -

Pic of some of the guard trimming I had to do early on to fit the 285's

Replaced the rear tail lights -

And did a few trips aswell -

I then started to get the offroad bug a little bit harder......I took the next step.....I sold my ARB barwork......and bought a set of Millweld sliders, front XROX tube bar.....whilst I was waiting for them to come in , I relocated the front washer bottle to make room for bigger tyres in the future so I fitted an aftermarket unit in the engine bay -


After -

I also made my own hi lift jack holder on the headboard -

Brackets -

And mounted -

Then the Xrox bar rocked up -

Heaps better approach angle from each with the new bashplate and the new bar Ive not once yet got hung up on the front end.

I then got really excited and eyed off the grinder in me garage and thought id start cuttiong up the hilux....I did a rear quarter chop...first one of its kind -

And how she looks after the chop -

I made some removable mudflaps that I can quickly take off when offroad to suit -

Sliders fitted -

With the rear quarter chop the tyres looked like they hung out abit more and not to catch the eye of the law, I fitted a set of rubber sidemount flexi flares onto my existing fibreglass ones -

Then.....................we put it up a gear........

I made friends with Wyatt Scott, co owner of Demello Offroad in the USA aswell and Rock Solid Toys (RST) and Marlin Czajkowski, owner of Marlin Crawler.

They offered to come to Australia and fit the very first Crawl Box to a current model hilux in the world.......

This here is Wyatt's Tacoma by the was the very first 05+ Model Tacoma in the US to get a front solid axle swap done to it and it rides on 40" tyres -

Front axle is a Currie Enterprises Rock Jock 60 with reverse cut 5.38 gears and ARB locker with 35 spline axle's Ford F-450 1 ton knuckles, Warn premium locking hubs and Wilwood disc brakes.

Rear axle is a Currie Enterprises heavy duty high pinion Dana 60 shaved with reverse cut 5.38 gears and ARB locker with 35 slpine axles and Wilwood disc brakes.

Wyatt with his family next to his truck -

Heres a couple short vid's of his tacoma in action - 21 09 TTORA BBL/?action=view&current=0822TTORABBL016.flv 21 09 TTORA BBL/?action=view&current=0822TTORABBL017.flv Bear Aug 2009/?action=view&current=WyattGatekeeper.flv

And heres a pic of Marlin's early 80's hilux., marlin has been credited with being the father of Rock Crawling in the USA....having developed the very first crawl box (2 nd transfercase)...he runs 3 transfercases in his own hilux.......

Marlin Driving his truck on 37's -

And the famous video of marlin "walking the Crawler" -

So you can see these blokes are the best in their game/business.....

Anyway, back to my build :p

So Ive got this first of new designed 4.7 geared Crawl Box thats gonna be fitted to my Hilux......because it is 8.5" long, I had to lengthen the front tail shaft by that much and shorten the front portion of the rear 2 piece tailshaft to get this to work.

Shortened front portion of 2 piece rear shaft below-

Transfer Case removed -

We came into a problem once the factory transfercase was remvoed...all the technical info on the current shape hilux I had ammased showed me that it had the same transfercase as the FJ Cruiser does in the states....and it does, except for some reason the Hilux has a forward shifting transfercase rather than a top shift transfercase which means the shifter itself fits above the rear transmission bellhousing and uses longer shift rods going back into the transfercase to shift gears.

This was a problem and we needed to convert my trasnfercase to a top shift......we didnt have the parts here, the Yanks were only here for a week....the front bellhousing adaptor was wrong was gonna be a tough ask.

Below you can see the longer shift rods coming out of the factory transfercase -

What we did was we went to a Toyota Wreckers, we bought a transfercase from a 2003 Hilux V6 4x4 which had a top shift, but it was right hand dropped as opposed to the current hilux's left hand problem, we just needed the shift rods anyway. So we took it and came home where Marlin stripped both transfercases and rebuilt my one with the rods we needed.

Here you can see the factory Hilux transfercase fitted with the shorted rods......the factory transfercase also has a blanking plug where the top shift handle goes into in those applications so we removed it and made our own smaller blanking plug to cover the hole in the back of the transmission bellhousing.

The other thing we did, because of the tight spot the factory transfercase shifter handle will now be in, we fitted a marlin Crawler short throw kit......

Below is a comparison pic of the different shifter bases....from far left to right we have the marlin quick shifter base, then a factory toyota quick shifter base from the wreckers, then the factory base the hilux has and then the blanking cover that was on top of the transfercase that we removed -

Below is a pic of the custom shifter rod we made to shift the Crawl Box and enable the shifter itself to be in the factory location where the factory transfer used to be -

To make room for the new position of the factory transfercase, we had to remove the center console, remove the handbrake assembly which we needed to modify the mounting bracket as it was in the way, we removed the auto shifter assembly which we needed to slightly trim and we drilled a 3" hole through the 3 floor panels off the hilux -

In between each layer of panel we heavily bogged it up with silicon to keep it water proof/water tight. Below you can see a close up pic with the quick shift base poking through the floor -

Wyatt has to also extend all the wiring 8.5-9" and after a couple in and out fits and refits to make sure everything was ok, and the new shifter fit properly and didnt hit and anything we finally got it done with the new parts late Friday night....we started Monday morning......

Inside the hilux, we had to try and make the new shifter location look good and as factory as we drilled a hole infront of the center consol lid where the new shifter was going to eexit -

Below you can see where the new factory transfercase shifters location is poking through the floor in amongst everything else -

And the end product with the console cover in place -

The quick shift makes a really big difference to the throws of the shifter, much much shorter....

What has the Crawl Box done to the Hilux?

Here, let me explain......

I have used my 2007 Hilux D4D auto as the basis for this example....bear with me.......

Hilux D4D Auto

Diff Ratio = 3.73

1st gear Ratio = 2.804

Low Range Ratio = 2.56

To calculate the Crawl Ratio we multiply first gear of the transmission with the low range of the transfer case -

2.804 x 2.56 = 7.18

Now multiply the previous number (7.18) by the diff ratio (3.73) = 26.78 Crawl Ratio
This would be far better in a manual Hilux diesel as first gear ratio in a manual is 4.313 and the diff ratio is 3.53 meaning it has a crawl ratio off 38.98

Basically, the higher the number, the slower the crawl speed is.

Dont forget Im on 33's so it kills the current crawl ratio in low range......

OK, now with a 2.28:1 crawler box it would be--> 26.78 x 2.28 = 61.06 Crawl Ratio

What really kills it for the hilux is the high diff ratio (3.73) and the high 1 st gear in the auto (2.804).

Now with the 4.7:1 gears that will be fitted my crawl ratio will be -

26.78 x 4.7 = 125.86 Crawl Ratio

So my standard Hilux has crawl ratio of 26.78 and with the Hilux in Compund Low with the Crawler it will be 125.86.....effectively, 4.7 times slower than standard.
Now, back to business...heres a couple of vids from the very first time we took the hilux offroad to test the crawl box -

Since then Ive gotten the front ARB locker fixed that was leaking and offroading now is damn awesome........

Just thought Id mention by the way, the following Tacoma is my inspiration and I hope to build my hilux into something similar one day -

Heres a couple of pics and small vids from Steep Track at tallarook.......

pics of Steep Track looking up at the first section -

this is looking down from the first section

here you can just make out some of the blokes at the bottom of the track at the top of the pic

after the first little bit of track at the start right before it opens up, to get access any further you have to climb over a big tree root thats been eroded infront of it, the steep up was pretty big so me and steve showed off our masonry skills and build a little ramp to help me up and over it. i wasnt takin more risks than i had to on this root, ive seen a landrover blow a center diff trying to climb over it in the past and another hilux a rear diff

then it was on the way up......that first root took 3 attempts to get over as as soon as your over it you come across another one at the same point when your rear tyres are getting over the first one so it slows you down.....if the front locker was working would have been better.

steve was kind enough to upload a vid of my run -
part1 -
part2 -
part3 -

doesnt do it justice, you gotta try and get there and do it yourself.

Here's another vid taken by steve of the luxi climbing out of a empty creek up a steep embankment -

I sorted out fitment issues I had with the Xrox bashplate mating up to my custom bashplate since I dodnt use the factory mounting location so abit of adjustment and some work got it working fine......

On the front of the bashplates I added a small Marlin Crawler Sticker as a little warning to prospective passengers....LOL

I also replaced the dodgy cheapo little light I had on the rear of the rollbar to light up the tray with a Twin Narva LED light that I got as part of the promotional gear during my 4x4 TV shoot. This light takes less current and the light is a white light not yellowish and lights up a better area to see gear in the tub at night.

Few more pics from another recent trip to Tallarook -

Driving up a huge rock on one of the tracks.....

The rocks were greasy with moss and moisture on them, and the tracks were bit greasy too....

the fact my tyres are just over half worn didnt help either....Hmmmmm...tyres

Me testing out the crawler....again :roll:

got my new towbar brackets that were custom made to raise the center section of the towbar to match the rear quarter chop.

I also got them to make an extra tab going horizontal just below the chassis rail where I put two extra bolts either side to clamp it on even stronger......number plate was just tech-screwed into the towbar itself...

see pics below -

am hoping to at some stage make side protection bars to protect the lower quarter running off the sides of the towbar.

And thats where I pretty much am now.......

Future Mods

The next thing Im going to do is sell the black sportsbar and tonneau cover I have and I am going to purchase the following frame for the ute tub in black -

And on top of it Im going to fit a luggage rack with a racksack of some sort to carry all the family's clothes, linen, pillows etc when going on trips away and will be below the roof ehight when fully loaded -

Ill mount my hilift to the rear of the rack, a shovel and axe either side of it......

Rack sack similar to below -

I got the following 1st of their kind heavy duty front driveshafts coming in the next week or so to help test out before release to the public -

Standard Hilux CV shaft on top and upgraded units below....these are development units, not released yet so I hope to test out their strength with the crawl box and front locker.

The specs on the CV's we will offer:
1.5 mm heavier shaft
15 mm extra extension at the CV... which equates to about 4" extra operating angle at the wheel.
Outside cup is 10mm bigger... making CV cup wall heavier.

These would work really well with a set of UCA's that I hope to get one day, coupled together they should give a little bit more down travel without any binding whatsoever. And should be able to handle the abuse a crawl box and front locker and future 35's will throw at it.

And then 35" tyres of some sort....Im leaning towards a set of 35/10.5x15 Silverstone Extremes at the moment.

Then a rear ARB Locker.


Custom Tube Rear Tray,

Long range fuel tank and water tank

Roof rack with LED Light Strips on the front

Front and rear winches and dual batteries

Maybe.....a custom solid front axle conversion....that'll be last after everything else.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Well I had my "4x4 Action" Magazine photo-shoot yesterday, was a good day thou full on......

I met the photographer, Steve from Holeshot Images at Tallarook Township and headed off into Tallrook Forest for the pics.....Because everything is closed for the winter the selection of tracks/camp areas etc to take pics off was limited. We drobe up Mt. Hickey Rd I think it was called to the Telstra tower up there but didnt look like a good spot to shoot pics from. Coming back down Steve decided to take some shots with the burnt trees and hillside in the background.....the black and browns of the landscape matched the hilux perfectly...I took some with my $shitty camera too.

Further on back down the track Steve spotted a large rocky platteue to the side of the mountain...we went there and it was perfect to get some good snaps, the sun had come out and luckily I brought some bits and pieces to finish off detailing the hilux......

The spot is awesome....Im hanging to go back there and have a proper play on the rocks.... :twisted: there is alot of moss and crap on the rocks so was abit slippery near the bottom....tyres pressure were at road pressure so I couldnt go nuts and no I didnt lower was just a photo shoot, didnt think we would need to. Steve did get some good pics of the Hilux Crawling up the huge boulder....but I have to wait for the magazine to come out to view them.

The pic above gave Steve a chance to crawl under neath and take a few under carriage pics.

The pic below shows how good/beneficial the rear quater chop is -

After that we tried to get to the reservoir there but every track /way we tried it was closed. We checked on our maps and Steve new of a scenic spot further on towards the east side of the forest and we decided to take Red Hill Track to get there.....Boy! wasn't that an experience :shock:

It was steep at places which wasnt bad but as we went on downhill, the track become really really slushy, so much so that the hilux's ar$e end was beginning to over take the front going downhill, forcing me to drive into....not fun at all!

One section there were deep ruts that you couldnt avoid and they dragged you into a wash out to the side of the track....the side of the track that I was supposed to be on was angled upwards so this was gonna be a challenge to get out......

I couldnt beleive only a few hours earlier my hilux was clean as and now the entire side was covered in gumbo-mud!

Steve slid off the track, luckily he had a winch on his GQ Patrol and pulled himself back onto it.I managed to reverse a few metres out of the washout.....others had obviously been stuck there before and left there big shovel there which I began to dig my own ruts to the side and block off the one that was there with branches and mud so the hilux front end would drag itself sideways and out of the $hithole.

Steve got some awesome pics of the hilux in its predicament...and me in mud shoveling..... :oops:

When done, I gave the luxi heaps....the front end half dragged itself out and the hilux kind of fish tailed out of the ruts and (almost off the side of the track towards an insurance job :shock: :eek: ) and yes, I did soil my underwear getting out of there as I was going way to fast at that point and way too sideways down the hill.....

I only hope he got that on camera.....would have been impressive.

Im not too keen on mud but had no choice once I was into it.

Sold the black sportsbar and tonneau cover...they'll be leaving me this weekend and onto the next project......cargo storage solutions.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Well my Monster-Rides upgraded driveshafts came in last thursday. One of the very first batch made.

These in testing, coupled with aftermarket uper control arms and custom built coil overs are getting some absolutely awesome travel numbers without any binding of the cv whatsoever. I hope to upgrade my upper arms and coil overs too i the future to match.

These along withsome other bits and pieces we got developing at Monster Rides for the current model Hilux will set the standard in aftermarket IFS suspension development in this country! Unfortunately Im not allowed to release the figures at this point in time but will when everything is complete in about amonths time.

Here are a couple more pics -

We have had interest from the USA for these driveshafts, and will be sending 2 pairs over in the near future. One will be fitted to an FJ Cruiser with 3" lift and 35's and the other will be fitted to the editor of Toyota 4WD Magazines personal FJ Cruiser Baja Racer. Heres a pic of it -

A built FJ Cruiser with Total Chaos, Sway-a-way COs & Bypasses, SCORE legal cage, PRP etc. It had raced 2007 Baja 500 and the V2R 2008
They are going to use our/these driveshafts and replace the center shafts with the longer Total Chaos ones to get the right track width.

They are planning on doing up this FJ Cruiser for an upcoming King of Hammers race, not to win it, but just to be the first full bodied FJ Cruiser with IFS to do it, so hopefully we can be there for when it happens.

Future plans for this FJ are -

Currie 9" rear
IFS, yes IFS front using a Currie 9" housing.
RCV D60 CVs - Now Monster Rides CV's
Atlas 4

Here it is on 39s with a little photo chop fender trim job.
These will be available from Wyatt at

so hassle him if your interested for a set for your FJ or Tacoma.

Just got word last night that my Upper Arms and extended ball joints are on their way too

Im planning on using ball joint equipped Camburg UCA's and I'll be trying something different with them by fitting extended ball joint to them to get the most out of these shafts.

Heres a pic of the extended ball joints Ill be fitting -

And the Camburg UCA's -

Im hoping both these together will get me the most out of the front IFS...trying to be different and explore what the front IFS of thesecan achieve.

Once the above is done a set of custom built coil-overs will be slotted in that we are currently developing to suit and it should be one of the best "Non extra track widened, long travel IFS" suspension's around.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Been a while since my last little update...some things have happened some not yet.

The heavy duty driveshafts have been put on hold for now, they needed some extra machining and a replacement part so I sent them back for this to get done (they were a test item after all) and due to other project being done by Monster Rides at the moment it has been put on hold for now.

Ive fitted and am testing extended factory ball joints in my factory upper control arms -

The balljoints come in 25mm extended or 40mm extended. Pic below shows the standard one in the middle, mine are 25mm extended.

What does this do? It keeps your factory Upper Control Arm off the coil on full droop as the factory upper arms contact the coils sometimes.

Here they are fitted.

They also provide an inch more downtravel.

Below is a pic of the cv angles on a 3" lifted hilux before the bracket fit (not mine)-

And here is a pic of the cv angles after the bracket fit -

An awesome improvement. Benefits of this bracket kit are that it protects the cv shafts but not keeping them operating at an extreme angle most of the time - allows more potential for down travel with a well set up kit - and less chance of busting a cv offroad.

Downside - the front diff pumpkin hangs now about an inch lower than the crossmember.....

To protect this Ive started cutting up my bashplate to allow it to fit over the exposed/lower diff pumpkin and brackets and will box it up over the top of these items toprotect them -

Below pic of bashplate fitted with exposed parts to be covered hanging through -

Once covered, will sand all back and get it powdercoated.

The Camburg Upper Control Arms came in and planned/expected late last year but in testing that Monster Rides did we werent happy with their performance and their limited Castor adjutsability so Monster Rides set out to build their own Upper Control Arms and we are proud to say that these are the first Australian made Aftermarket Upper Control Arms for the current model hilux on the market and they offer alot more adjustability than Camburg, All Pro or any other upper arm except of Icon.

These will be offered in two options - one with a 1.25" uniball and cover or a factory ball joint fittment.

The first batch just got made a few days ago so the whole front kit including new remote reservoir coilovers should be on its way soon.

My hilux will be on display in the Monster Rides Vendor stall at Tuff truck 2011 (NSW-OZ) in April showcasing the new IFS suspension kit that will give 11.5 - 12" of front wheel travel....something the yanks cannot achieve without increase track width by 3" or so.


668 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Had a quiet morning at work so I played a little with MS-Paint and a pic of my hilux.....raised it slightly mroe and made the tyres look bigger....tried to get em looking like a 35" but I think they look closer to 37 in the pic below....hmmm maybe one day.


668 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Finally gonna see some changes made to the hilux this weekend.....

Monster Rides has finally completed their first batch of adjustable height coilovers for the front -

They will be set to 4" on the front....with the diff brackets already fitted the cv angle shouldnt be any more than a 2-2.5"

Getting an extended rear shackle for now to give me an extra 1-1.5" height to suit the front better. At some stage Id like to get a custom length longer top leaf to get some better shackle angle and invert the rear shocks.....I beleive Monster Rides is working on something similar to this and also possibly a 4-link rear conversion kit.

Uniball Monster Rides Upper Control Arms....these have a shitload of castor adjustment available -

Swaybar relocators -

Not sure if Im getting the beefed up swaybar links sent aswell...will see...these bits are getting sent to me mates workshop who will fit them this weekend for me.

I also have to organise tyres by weeks end.....the hilux will be on display at the Monster Rides Vendor Stall at Tuff Truck Comp the following week.

I have great discount pricing from either Toyo or Goodyear so my choice is down to the MTR Kevlar or the Open Country MT's.....size will be 305/70x16 (33/12.5x16)

opinions on either would be great.


bashplate is still getting modded...hard to find time.rollseye2

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
New 305/70x16 MTR's, new adjustable height coil overs.....

front is sitting at just on 3" Id say or a tad bit more, not sure....trimmed the mount too as it "just" touched on full steering. a custom wheel alignment in a weeks time will add more castor and make it all work even better.

The front end lifted with a trolley jack...needed 2 blocks off wood on the jack to raise the tyres off the ground when before it wasnt needed...massive improvement in droop.

more pix to come tomorrow.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
OK, heres some more pics from the weekend.

Firstly some more poser shots from Tuff Truck Vendor Display. :roll:

In the pic above there was still 2" worth of uptravel available if there was sufficient load on the front end.

When I got home I re-adjusted the front end a little....I dropped the coilovers by about 5 mm (equating to around 10mm overall)

Image below for reference showing that the bottom adjustor ring is 5mm off the lowest setting.

I then Proceeded to cut my bodymounts, heres the plan -

Cut the bottom half off first -

I then cut vertical slices going across and finishing off by cutting across the top and then using pliers bending them up and down to complete removal as I couldnt get the angle grinder to cut through in that position all the way.

Completed -

Full Clearance -

View from Underneath -

Done -

And one more pic of full droop with a trolley jack and some blocks of wood -

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
The kit -

The Flex -

On RHF theres still 2" more uptravel available if loaded up.

I'll get some driveshaft angle pics soon....front end is sitting at about 3.8".....headlight height on 33's is 1190mm

And when sitting level the inner driveshaft boot ribs dont even touch.

Drop bracket lifts are a thing of the past.

This kit will give you a genuine 4" front lift.

This kit will protect your cv's and offer you an upgraded cv option aswell.

This kit will give you maximum clearance without needing a drop bracket crossmember.

Will handle both on and offroad and give you front travel numbers to make some solid axled vehicles blush!

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Ok, heres some inner cv boot pics for those of you that are interested.

Mind you, my cv boots have been running at 3" for 80,000km already so the rubber of the boots kind of "wears" into position if you understand? for example, if the vehicle/driveshafts were absolutely new then the spaces between the ribs would be even greater.

Ok, so now for the pix -

They are "barely" touching....and to be honest they were touching alot more with my previous 3" suspension lift that I had on.

Ill get some updated ones when the HD Driveshafts get fitted.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Here's some updated pics of my progress on my bashplate rebuild........its been taking longer than expected but I am getting there.

Almost all the welding has been completed....only thing left to do is to weld on a half tube 40cm long that will go on the front of the bashplate (see pics at the bottom) to protect the swaybar now that it has been relocated forwards slightly I had to accomodate this. No I am not removing it.

Since Im not welding God unfortunately, and since Im only using very basic hand tools to do everything I thought to pretty it up a little I'd get some metal filler to smoothout the exterior of the welds and cover any little pits that were there. The welds are strong beleive you me, they just aint pretty....bit like myself I guess :roll: :lol: :lol: :lol:

I bought some metal filler yesterday called "knead it" - its a long length of platicine stuff in two compounds. You cut off a small piece and knead it like a dough to mix them together. Wet your hands to allow it to last longer and you got bout 5 mins to work with the piece.

Used it to cover over sections/gaps between the two 3mm plates I had welded together. Goes hard enough to grind. On the back end you can see where I have used a paintable silicon filler to cover all the welds to protect em from rusting. You can clearly see the outline of the old bashplate with the newer one being bigger welded to it.

Those that remember my little bolt breaking incident at the start of the year will recognize the mark "X" in red on the bottom right.....Im not using that bolthole anymore and since the extra 3mm plate I welded on is larger I have extended the mounts back to the front mounds of the transmission guard.

Its not supposed to look pretty...its supposed to work.....all that silicon will get painted over and protected.

So bashplate is now 6mm thick....diff mount guards and diff guards are 10mm thick and the front angled portion remains at 3mm thick but will be strengthen by the piece tube I weld in to it.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Took the hilux to me mates business "The Suspension Centre" to give her a checkup on the alignment now that the new suspension kit has settled in after 5,000km, and I have wound down the front to the lowest level which is exactly 3" above stock.

Couldnt beleive how much Castor is built into these arms....great specs I reckon -

Just a couple small things to do yet to fine tune the setup.

Am waiting on Uppper Control Arm bump stop brackets to be made to limit suspension droop.

Am considering moving the lower shock mount on the front lower control arm forward 15mm just to clear the driveshaft boot on full suspension droop which is touching at full stuff.

Will be then removing the fibreglass wheel arch flares and cutting 1" to 1.5" to clear the tyres at full suspension compression properly. The hilux's have a small fender opening compared to the tacoma's.

And in about 2 months time I should have another custom made tube front bar for the beast to showcase a new Monster Ride product. :D:cool:

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
My next 2 mods that I am undertaking is to make the hilux more driveable on the road.

I have ordered a Chip-It Power module for the diesel which has a built in boost controller, aswell as an EGT gauge. So it allows you to run more power than the usual chip does and when EGT's get too hgh it rectifies it by dropping power until they reach safe levels then ups them again.

Will make the hilux boogey on the road. That should be in within a week.

The ChipIt enable the boost to be increased aswell as keeping an eye on injection timing, EGT's and is alot more comprehensive unit then others on the market. The potential for huge torque is unbeleivable. Heres ia one customers dyno graph with one of these chips and a 3" exhaust with a custom tune-

The figures below are measured at the wheels. NOTE: standard torque is 343nM at the engine, so even thou the standard toque setting on the graph below is higher than normal, usuing it as a base point still showed a 72% increase in torque.

Other mod is to upgrade the pititful standard front brakes the hilux comes with. Standard Hilux front rotors are 297mm in diameter by 25mm thick (11.69 inches indiameter by 1" thick), so I have decided to fit front rotors and calipers from a Prado 120 which comes with 338mm in diameter rotors by 28mm thick (13.31" diameter by 1.1" thick)

The supercharged Hilux TRD was the only hilux to be sold with the Prado front brakes package. The booster and master cylinder remained the same as standard hilux items. The braking performance of this hilux was awesome which I aim to emulate.

I disassembled the Calipers today at work and gave them to my friend to use compressed air to blow the pistons out.

He also gave them a bit of a steam clean. Stupid me tried to get the pistons out myself beforehand and damaged a couple of the stock in Australia so have to wait till stock comes in from Japan. I could probably use emery paper and lightly take the burrs off the edge....will see.

The other thing with these brakes....because they are so big, they wont fit on a 16" steel wheel. Prado and Hilux models that came out with these brakes had 17" wheels fitted as standard.

In order to overcome this I will have to "polish" both side of the caliper a little to get them to clear the wheels.

As you can see by the shaded area I highlighted below -

Heres a pic of one done on a Prado to enable them to fit 16" wheels over the calipers -


668 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Did a late night session last night fitting the Chip-It module to the Diesel Hilux after 9'ish when I put the kids to sleep.

Comes with its own loom with instructions on it where to connect everything. You piggy-back the common rail plug to the loom and the same with the MAF sensor plug. Also has a fused positive and ground wire you need to connect.

With the EGT-Exhaust Gas Tempriture Gauge I mounted it inside the dash below the ashtray. Also comes with a seperate fused positive and earth wires to connect aswell as a cable running into the engine bay to the actual chip it module itself and a Exhaust tempriture Thermocouple that you have to mount on the exhaust pipe outlet from the turbo.

Initial test drive didnt show any results, meaningI had to check the power connection to the unit and sure enough I didnt connec tit 100%.

Second test drive left me in awe! :shock:

Off idle theres a slight extra "jerk" forward from the engine.

Between 2-3000rpm or so she revs out like a V6.....I'd almost say that I think my hilux would have no problems keeping up with a standard 1GR 4 litre V6 hilux at the moment. possibly even beat it .

There is a more pronounced "whine" from the turbo which makes the hilux sound more like a supercharged V6 does under acceleration.

The other benefit is the auto shifts into lock up convertor (4th gear) noticely sooner and holds it longer which should see me getting some of my fuel economy concerns sorted after fitting the 305 MTR's.

I have been offered to also test the VMN-3 Drive Flat Throttle Controller. This is basically a little unit with a seperate dash display that allows you to adjust the percentage of full throttle compared to your accelerator.

3-Drive's purpose is to remap the throttle position sensor voltage to trick the ECU into laying the boot in a lot faster than normal so you take off and accelerate a lot faster. It has 3 driving modes hence it's name. Normal (or off) Sports (which most of you guys will use) and Eco mode if you want to drive for economy.
This unit works well with any late model fourby.

Heres some more info -

Dash Display -

Heres a diagram that shows what it does in the 3 modes it offers....basically, if you hold your pedal at 30%, in normal mode its the same as stock, in economy mode your throttle percentage is less (thou you still have full power available it just takes longer to get there) and in Sport Mode you get upto 68% throttle so double what your pedal is doing-

There are 7 levels on Sports Mode and 5 levels on Economy Mode.

The increased throttle response in Sports mode reduced the time to cover 400 metres by 4 Seconds but increased fuel consumption by 50cc's (50 ml)

In eco mode, the acceleration was much slower, taking an extra 6 seconds to cover the distance but the car used 49 cc's (49 ml) less fuel to cover the distance. Remember that the VMN Pivot 3 Drive throttle controller is the only one available with an eco setting.

So these 2 diagrams should illustrate how the 3-drive Flat controller helps you to drive better in both economy and sports modes.
Ill be getting one to trial in 3 weeks and to do a review on it. Will keep you guys updated. This works on any modern vehicle. Alot of the "ricers" and drag racing nuts are using similar products. It would greatly help getting your vehicle with bigger tyres off the line around town.

Coupled with the chip it module, it should give me the option of either tyre frying performance or torquey economy around town.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Small update -

The brakes didnt end up working and I had issues with the chip I had installed....long story shot....

Did a few small mods to my custom towbar sidemounts......



Cut the front portion off abd a bit off the bottom-

Mounted up again-

You obviously can see the difference. Heres another pic of the extra tab that was welded on the inner side to mount these brackets underneath the chassis rails when they were originally made-

Ive seen non genuine towbars mounted like these with 4 mounting points per side so i guess for most towing duties other than real heavy loads I'll be fine. This also gives me a good mounting point on the chassis rail for some tube quarter protectors if i ever get round to it.

Your all probably wondering right now "why did you do that Max?"

Here's why-

To make room for some of Buddy's fine 75mm extended shackles. Damn these are big and chunky :shock: Gave them a couple coats of black primer-

To get these sitting at the 45 degree or so angle i want im going to need the extra clearance from the towbar brackets when suspension is compressed. Also to achieve this shackle angle will be getting custom top leaves installed in the near future when they are ready......hoping to get an extra 3-4 inches of down travel, and bugger all height increase in the rear. Should be able to keep both rear wheels on the ground with 1 of the front right up in the air.....cant wait for it or pics, she'll flex like an 18year old gymnast :roll:

I hear what some if you are thinking.....are you goint to invert the rear shocks and runner bigger ones?

Well,'ll have to wait and see ;)

The other "small" piece of equipment to arrive this week is a rear one of these -

:twisted: Hope to have it installed in the next month when I find some time to book it in.

Oh! And the front bar on my hilux is sold to another hilux and Ill be fitting a new version to suit a high mount winch.

668 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Finally got round to getting the rear ARB Locker Fitted to match the front...also fitted the 150psi solenoid aswell.....

Scotts Swaybar Links -

These are really well thought out product and short of not running a swaybar at all this is the best compromise for both off and on. Allowing independant operation of each front axle from the other through the majority (bout 80%) of the travel, and allowing the swaybar to kick in as normal at the upper and lower ends of the suspensions travel.

With the circlip in place (bit hard to see in pic below) the rod/link is solid-

With the circlip removed the shaft slides up and down as the suspension travels. The Uniballed joints work great considering the angles the links goes to as the suspension doesnt just stay vertical through suspension travel but as the suspension droops, the lower ends angles out as the upper end on the steering knuckles goes inwards.

Top marks to him for ingenuity. :cool:

some Depo angel eye headlights and driving lights in the new bars wings.

Also another first....current hilux Xrox front bar to suit Hi Mount Winch.

Front View

Front Corner View

Side View - those that have an Xrox already will realise the profile is slightly has an angled upwards portion at the front and the front face itself is shorter but sits abit higher, if that makes sense.

Top View - here you can see how the top is hollow to allow room for the Hi Mount winch to poke through.

Spot Light Mounts - here you can see how I mounted the spotlights upside down. Those alloy spacers are the same ones found in the genuine towbar kit that sits inside the chassis rails. These lights will have to go when I get round to buying a Hi Mount as they'll be in the way.

Full View

Shakedown run this coming weekend, cant wait.

Future plans include custom comp tray/flat bed in the new year and a hi mount winch...then guard mods for bigger tyres.
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