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I have a 01 Double Cab TRD Tacoma, love this truck.

I'm moving to my other home in Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii in a few months and shipping my truck there.

Over the past 3 years I've been going there, my friend who has a 4" lift on his Jeep Wrangler and bigger wheels has shown me some of the most incredible beaches and ocean entry spots on the island which are ONLY accessible by 4WD off-road vehicles. As a comparison, some of the places I went with other friends in non-lifted 4WD vehicles like an Isuzu Rodeo and a Jeep Cherokee totally bottomed out but we were still able to get through but banged up the sides pretty good.

I'm not really interested in rock-crawling as a hobby and I don't want to modify it for "looks". I think it looks great stock. I'm curious about modifying the truck for practical reasons.

So, my questions are:
What is the general rule about how much to get a truck lifted?
What does a 2" lift versus a 5" lift get you (besides 3 more inches)? Is there a tradeoff?
Can I skip the lifting and just get beefier skid plates and rock sliders? If so, what do I need to cover?
Or do I need to do both lifting and armoring the truck?
My truck is a TRD model, is it lifted already over the base model?

Again, this is for practical purposes and I want to spend any money on modifying the truck with 100% practicality, and not at all for looks. Thanks!
 

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Armor is THE most practical mod for any truck. No matter how much you lift it, there are still bigger rocks!

I would armor it up and wheel the hell out of it until the tires are worn out, then worry about lift and bigger tires.

Your truck with the long wheelbase and the rear locker will go anywhere those other rigs did!
 

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I agree. I always put sliders on before anything else. Sliders have saved me lots of money on bodywork.
 

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sliders, skids, then lift it right with coilovers and leaf pack. if you truly love your truck like you say then you owe it at least this:D


That said I'll be in Kona inn february hanging with a friend who lives there...hang out for a beer maybe and talk Tacomas?
Mike
 

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RedRunnertc said:
Armor is THE most practical mod for any truck
X2 I wished I would have put armor first on my truck. Now I'm saving money to do it later after i've spent money in lift, tires, gears, etc.

So, yep, armor should be the first and most important investment.

On the other hand, there are guys out there that do it the other way around for several reasons: maybe because they don't care about their rigs, or their rig is not their daily driver, etc. But that's another story, specially if you can afford to beat the hell out of truck because you have other vehicles available at home.
 

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ben90 said:
X2 I wished I would have put armor first on my truck. Now I'm saving money to do it later after i've spent money in lift, tires, gears, etc.

So, yep, armor should be the first and most important investment.

On the other hand, there are guys out there that do it the other way around for several reasons: maybe because they don't care about their rigs, or their rig is not their daily driver, etc. But that's another story, specially if you can afford to beat the hell out of truck because you have other vehicles available at home.
My truck is a DD and I put sliders on it before I did any wheeling. I looked at it this way; I'd rather have sliders on my truck, than dents all over the place...

Even though it is a daily driver, I made the sliders and made them look pretty sweet. I get a lot of questions on them.....

On the 2-5" parts, you have to take into consideration if you want the diff to hang low anyways. Sure you get the frame flearance, but you have the diff hang lower. Not to emntion the bigger tires will have an added stress on your steering components, rendering them much easier to break.

The TRD is not higher. The only thing the TRD offers is the rear locker, a progressive spring rate and a larger sway bar (which the springs will most likely get changed, and the swaybar is disconnected for off road use anyways)

You could also do a 2.5" with a 1 or 2" body...

-Phill
 
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