TTORA Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
After months of work, we drove the FJ for the first time last week. We are very impressed with the handling and drivability of the whole package. Ed's Toyota is truly the nicest, cleanest, best performing piece of 4 wheel machinery that Krawltex has ever built.

The new stainless rear brakelines do wonders for the stopping power. Now the rear disc brakes will actually lock up before the TRD/Brembo upgraded front brakes. Ride quality wise, the rear 2.5x12" King coilovers and triple bypasses are matched perfectly to the 12" of front travel the Total Chaos/King combination provides. Whether it is a hard launch off the line or throttling acceleration in a turn, the 4 link geometry and Anti-rock sway bar plant the suspension firmly to the ground without any signs of body roll or dive.

Let me explain what all had to be done to match the quality of the front end and the problems that had risen from building the drive train up. First off, a TRD Supercharger with a bigger boost pulley and fuel management system, coupled with 35's and 4.88 gearing equates to a blown up rear Toyota axle. What was chosen to replace it was a hybrid axle from Currie. Before we began this project, we installed a Rockjock 60 in to another FJ Cruiser. What we didn't care for was how tall the rear axle was with a link truss, and what we had to notch out of the frame to make that package fit.

Instead of what we had already installed, we enlisted Currie to take the same axle flanges and weld them up to a custom 4130 chromoly Fab9 housing that was 2.5" wider than the axle it was replacing. This was the essential component to a street legal axle swap because the outer axle flanges Currie developed allow the use of the factory brake backing plate with all of it's ABS/traction control glory. Hi9 was chosen for a 4.88 geared nodular center section and ARB locker. Currie cut the custom length 35 spline shafts. These were the biggest we could package and still utilize the factory brakes. As some of you already know, the traction control and ABS which are exclusive to the FJ Cruiser will light the dash up like a Christmas tree if anything is out of the computer's specifications.

Suspension wise, we went with the traditional 4 link with triangulated uppers. Chromoly heims with 1 1/4" lowers and 7/8" uppers were chosen. It's riding on mock-up links while the Heretic Fab heat treated chromo links are still in the hardening process. Downsouth Motorsports (our go to guys for shock building), suggested the 12" body coilovers and bypass shocks with what seems to be the perfect spring rate right out of the box. As mentioned before, it matches the front suspension travel to a tea. We contemplated ways to radius or notch the factory frame for clearance. What transpired was chopping the rear frame completely off the truck, behind the middle body mount under the rear door. 2x6" square tubing was hand cut in to frame rails that not only radius upwards in to the wheel well and down to the factory rear cross member location, but also curve inwards to provide ample clearance for shock packaging. Coil over hoops go through the floor with frame bracing inside and outside the cab. A Currie Anti-rock sway bar plants the rear tires. All of the adjustable link bracketry, arm mounts, axle truss, and shock mounts are 1/8" chromoly stacked plate, TIG welded of course.

All of the sexy suspension could not have been performed without addressing the fuel containing situation. Many people perform 3 link suspensions with a pan hard bar under these Toyotas, because the factory gas tank sits on the driver's side inner frame rail. We wanted this truck to have the best ride and most travel, without sacrificing flex. So Fuelsafe was enlisted to build a custom cell. What makes this cell so special besides the Fuelsafe monicker, poly bladder, internal baffling, and aluminum shell? Our fuel cell has a modified top plate to adapt the OEM Toyota sending unit/fuel pump assembly. We chose this route so the TRD Supercharger/APR X1 fuel management system could keep it's very specific fuel pump AND we could use the factory in dash fuel gauge without the need of adding an auxilary unit. The whole package is enveloped in a 1x1" steel cage, then shod with a 3/8" 60/61 aluminum shell.

This truck is a complete Beast! The ride quality is second to none and the FJ is a complete blast to drive. Here's a short build list of this project: 2.5" wider per side Total Chaos long travel suspension w/4130 axle shafts, A-arm gussets, King 2.5" coilovers and triple bypass shocks, limit straps, chromoly upper/lower A arms with uniballs and aluminum skids, knuckle gussets, steering extensions, TRD Supercharger with APR X1 fuel management/7th injector, cam gears, and smaller pulley for more boost, Doug Thorley long tube headers, 02 Simulators, 2.5" madrel exhaust TIG welded, Lefty 4.1 t-case w/twin stick, 4.88's and ARB in the front, Currie chromoly 9" w/Toyota end cups to utilize factory brakes (for ABS), Krawltex built triangulated 4 link, 1 1/4" and 7/8" chromly heims, chromly heat treated links, 2.5x12" King coilovers and triple bypasses, Krawltex built rear frame, Fuelsafe custom cell to utilize OEM Toyota fuel pump, Fab fours bumpers and rock sliders. We also chopped all the factory crossmembers out of the truck and flush mounted them with the factory frame rails. Then we built 3/8" 60/61 aluminum skid plates from the front bumper back.

Last step is an interior cage, custom dash/gauge work, and possibly an aluminum rack system. But we are going to take a breather and let Ed enjoy his truck for a while! Here is a link to the current 4 link build:http://www.krawltex.com/newtex/g1/album421?page=1

and here's a link to the entire NEWARE FJ BUILD: http://www.krawltex.com/newtex/g1/album343
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
upper link and shock mounts, disassembled for powder coat


rear cross member out for final welding and fish plating:


final assembly:


rear suspension view:


interior shock cage:


rear view:


fuel cell skid:


upper link mount and re-routed evap system:


4 link rear view:


after a wash and a road test:


front view:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Here's the aluminum interior work. Came out pretty nice, and we really like the way the factory panels look trimmed around it all. There is 100% functionality of the back seats.























 

·
Registered
Joined
·
148 Posts
Amazing. Its almost exhausting to think of all the work put into this project.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the kind words. Here's a few pics of the other drive train/suspension projects on this truck. Somehow I forgot to take pics of the 4.88's, front ARB, TRD Supercharger, APR X1, and the cam gear install... but all of that stuff is pretty well hidden once it's on the truck any way.

knuckle gussets



eccentric cam bolt gussets and auxilary shock hoop



Inchworm 4.7 "Lefty" t-case with twin sticks



trim panel for the console



Total Chaos front kit with upper a-arm gussets, aluminum lower skids, and King coilovers/triple bypass shocks



installed



 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Somewhere in the middle of all this, we cut every crossmember off the bottom of the frame, redid the t-case/tranny mount flush with the frame rails, and used 6061 3/8" aluminum to make a true flat belly skid plate system. The front skid is flush with the bottom of the Fab Fours bumper. The second skid protectes the diff and has an access panel for the oil drain plug. The third skid protects the transmission and t-case. The last one is for the gas tank. all the mounting hardware is flush mounted.













 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,933 Posts
I've been looking at this thing on pirate as well. Nice work. I like how you covered up the shock cage in the back. Did you rebuild the rear half of frame to keep the shocks off the tires? A+
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the feed back. Exactly, on the frame. There wasn't enough room for the coil overs to miss the frame or tires at full flex. At first we notched the factory frame, but it just didn't look very good.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
76 Posts
with all the money and fab parts you put into the fj, why not just straight axle the front, run your coils on a four link and take out the weak link in the entire system...the cv's. Even the RCV's don't hold up that well under prolonged abuse, some skinny pedal, and transfer case reduction. Articulation and strength will never be an issue either with the live axle. just wondering.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
oldskool... that is a very good question. The main reason we went with a long travel IFS suspension is for ride quality. Believe it or not, this is his daily driver and his most prized possession. He isn't in to rock crawling. This build has been a dream of his to travel cross country with his family and go camping out of. When at the ranch in south Texas, he bombs down the fire roads. And I'm trying to convince the owner to let us "borrow" his FJ to pre-run our desert races in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
Wow... very impressive. I like how you retained the rear seat. Theres a guy on rocksolidtoys that just did a LT set up with a rock jock 60 in the rear. He went up into the cabin. Im pretty sure he lost the rear seat. Very nice build man!! Not a fan of the red with the blue, but who cares.... that thing is bitchin!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
You guy do some very nice work. the finish work looks very nice in the pics. you should thank this customer for putting your kids through collage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
\ I like how you retained the rear seat. Theres a guy on rocksolidtoys that just did a LT set up with a rock jock 60 in the rear. He went up into the cabin. Im pretty sure he lost the rear seat.
You are refering to my build. As I mentioned on RST, my rear seats were gone long ago as I had a full storage system that replaced them. Coming into the rear passenger area with a 14" coilover wasn't that big of deal for me and it allows us to add a bypass down the line behind it if we wanted.

If needed we could have located the coilover elswhere so it didn't interfere with the rear seat area, similar to where it comes up in the krawltex fj. With a slight notch on the frame and lower axle mount one could run a 12" coilover without coming into the interior at all. All tradeoffs and though and I'd rather have a high shock mount on the axle and come up into the interior like the Krawltex FJ or my build, so your not beating your rod ends/shafts on rocks.

Definitely impressive fab work from Cam and the guys at Krawltex. A few years down the road I'll be having the Gulf Coast Crawl Shop do a cage on mine and might take some of the interior work to Krawltex for a custom dash.


Cam - is there any reason why you guys didn't lengthen the wheel base with all that custom frame work?



For folks reference, here is how we set up the coilover up on my FJ like medic was talking about.

Showing a smaller coilover could be fitted without going into the interior. Thats at bump...need to notch the frame a bit to account for articulation.



Tower for the 14" coilover



All mounted up



Interior shot





Getting ~15" of travel (5" uptravel - 10" downtravel) with the 3 link. Once the FJ's no longer needed as a daily driver we'll be switching to a 4 link and fuel cell in the interior similar to krawltex.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
FJLed, The Fuelsafe cell was custom built to provide a longer range than the factory tank. Even with the rear taper to the fuel cell, we now have 22 gallons of capacity verses the catory 18 gallons, without going through the rear floor. The cell was necessary because of the traditional triangulated 4 link, that wouldn't sweep the axle to one side at full droop, like the Metal Tech 3 link.

Recently, we redid the inner wheel wells in steel and moved the reservoirs outside to the frame. This cut down the interior noise tremendously, and it's like we never hacked the tub. I will try and remember to post some pics up next week when I'm back in the shop.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top