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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Current state:




specs/details

3.4L v6
Automatic Transmission
rear elocker TRD axle
5.29s
ARB front locker
Dakar rear springs (+Dakar Add a leaf) with OME Nitrocharger Sport Shocks
Ubolt Flip
New lower shock mounts
diff guard
rear frame supports
bentup sliders
custom rear bumper
231 mm Tundra front brakes
35x12.50x17 Km2's on Sequoia wheels
1.25" wheel spacers
2882 OME front coils on nitrocharger sport shocks
no body lift
front fenders tubbed to fit 35's at no lift and full stuff
helton water heater (shower)
home made front bumper


Maintenance notes:

- Tranny fluid replaced @ ~ 120k
- Outer TRE, ball joints, CV's, wheel bearings @ 180k
- 90k rack w/new poly bushings @ 180k
- Timing belt and water pump @205k
- like new NEW UCAs and OME springs/struts @ 210k
- diff drop @ 210k
- rear axle swap/springs/shocks @ 210k
- 5.29s, install kit, bearings, and front ARB installed @ 215k
- new belts @ 215k
- new air filter and snorkel @ 215k
- spark plugs/ 3 wires @ 220k
- rear wheel bearings @ 220k
- diffs drained & refilled @ 220k
- lower a-arm bushings @ 220k
- aux trans cooler @ 222k
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
I believe that all builds should begin with a goal. My goal is to have a rig that can travel comfortably at freeway speeds, handle week-long car-camping trips, and drive the occasional 6/10 rated trail (including Golden Spike, Hole in the Rock Trail, and the Rubicon Trail).

Here's the long-term plan:


- elocker axle swap
- OME/dakkar suspension (I actually prefer this combo over the alcan/icon combo)
- Specialty Products UCAs
- WIK paper air filters
- 5.29s
- 35x12.50x17 KM2s
- Sequoia Wheels
- Custom bumper by chocflip, much like the allpro bumper only beefier
- Front bumper similar to shrockworks or elite offroad products
- warn 9000-10000 lb winch
- rock lights
- Rigid Industries Dually lights up front
- helton hot water heater/shower
- ARB front locker
- ARB compressor
- budbuilt skids
- cornfed diff drop
- 4runner front seat swap


Still undecided:
- rear shell
- ARB RTT on the back
- fridge
- dual batteries (once I get the winch)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
After a seemingly endless cycle of vehicles, I have chosen to build one of my favorite platforms: a 1st generation toyota tacoma doublecab.

As outlined in my Toyota Comparisons Article. there are quite a few things I love about the doublecabs:

Things I LOVE about the doublecabs:
- mpg: 24 stock, 19 mpg with 35's and 4.88s
- 4 doors
- passengers were comfortable
- still fun to drive despite its length
- I LOVE the storage behind the rear seats. I could easily fit an ice scraper, jumper cables, 1st aid kit and recovery gear back there. It was super handy
- love having a truck bed
- built like a toyota truck: reliable, tough, capable, fun


Shortcomings:
- bed is too short to sleep in
- uncomfortable front seats
- price. These 4-doors are super expensive.

Out of all the rigs I've owned in the past, two stick out as my favorites: my maroon doublecab:


And my green regular cab "Abner".



I decided I wanted to build my dream rig rather than compromising and putting money into a rig that I was "settling" on. I put out a wanted ad, and Rock Taco shot me a message that he'd be selling his doublecab soon. He hooked me up with a great deal on his 2002 doublecab tacoma:








And just to prove the 4wd has been used before:



Specs:

- 218k miles (yikes). I realize these are a lot of miles, even for a toyota. The engine runs extremely strong and it has been well cared for by a toyota lover who does things the right way
- non-TRD so no elocker
- bentup sliders
- tundra 231mm front brake swap
- new timing belt, water pump, idler pulley, steering rack, CVs
- and it came with some cool parts (which I will be selling to offset the cost of the build): Total chaos UCAs, donnaho extended travel coilovers, add-a-leaf, extra wheels/tires.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Last week, my buddy Kyle took me to pick up the truck from Rock Taco. We got back around 10, just as frieed showed up to help wrench. First order of business was to swap the rear 8.4 axle with the TRD elocker axle from Abner.






Kyle and Eric marveling at how none of the bolts are rusty. I guess there is some good that can come out of a CA car.








One axle removed.



 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
two axles out, and one bumper removed:







About this time dutchman showed up along with Spork. After some pizza we bolted up both axles and got them off jackstands. We then swapped the chocflip bumper onto the white one and just for kicks we threw the 4runner bar onto ******. Something just doesn't look right. It looks so good on the single cab, but so wrong on the double.







Taking some pictures for my future elocker switch install.








Next up, we had to swap the front diff from the white taco into the green taco. I am amazed at how much more room there is in there with the 2.7 vs the 3.4. Unfortunately I've been having a lot of practice pulling the front diffs lately. Kyle and I got 'em swapped over without too much trouble.



It was about 7 PM at this point, and Kyle had put in a solid 11 hours, and it was time for him to go home. I spent the rest of the night buttoning up the green taco so Spork could buy it back the next day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Today I did the best mod any vehicle owner can do for perormance, speed, and reliability: De- badging.

My wife thinks I'm crazy for doing this but I'm not a fan of chrome, and I prefer the minimalistic, simple look.


Look at all that bling!









Step 1: Heat gun on LOW heat. Soften the glue behind the emblem.







Step 2: Work the emblem off using fishing line.




Step 3: Use an eraser wheel to remove the leftover residue:




Step 4: Wax (not done yet)

Step 5: Enjoy your non-bling ride. Much better!





I watched a YouTube video that said to use this stuff to remove the adhesive:



It worked well on his dodge, but it did nothing on my toyota. The eraser wheel proved much more effective. Eraser wheels can be purchased at auto body/paint supply stores.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This Saturday I will be tubbing the front fenders. For anyone curious about the process, feel free to come over and watch.

i'm starting to wonder if I should go to 5.29s while I have the diffs out. The 4.88s seemed fine on my last doublecab, but I have this nagging feeling that I may prefer 5.29s...

Maybe I'll drive around with 4.88's for a bit and see how it feels...


Gear ratio calculator:
http://www.grimmjeeper.com/gears.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Just to prove I got some work done tonight. I got the front end up on jackstands and removed the Donahoe coilovers. The UCAs will be swapped out later this week for some SP/Light Racing UCAs (my favorites).



 

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You swapping out the Total Chaos UCAs for lightspeed? Why? What do you like better about the Lightspeeds?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I know it's blasphemy to pick any product over Icon or TC on TTORA, but there are a couple reasons I really like the SP/light racing UCAs:

- #1 reason is the ability to adjust caster and camber. Getting a true alignment is important to me. it helps my vehicle track properly, have the correct contact patch with the road, and my $1000 tires wear even
- SUPER beefy. I would argue that they're at least if not more beefy than my TC UCAs
- it uses bushings like the stock UCAs
- no squeaky unibals
- no need to rebuild them every year
- overengineered. Even though they don't look like they came from a trophy truck, they are really well designed. If you get a chance to check 'em out on a rig, definitely do it.

I don't drive through whooped-out sand dunes at 60 MPH. I travel through backcountry roads with potholes, washboards, and a variety of terrain at 45-60 mph. I don't want to start a war about which UCA is best, but I definitely prefer the SP/Light Racing UCAs over anything else out there. If you're trying to decide what you want, definitely give them a good look before deciding.

I also removed the Donahoe/icon 2.5" C/Os for OME struts. I feel the OMEs hold up a lot better to the elements here in Utah. My Icons on my past rig looked 10 years old after 7 months. They didn't ride as good on the street or offroad. I know guys that pre-run the baja 1000 with their OMEs and they hold up just fine. I'm a big fan.
 

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I was just curious. I would like some UCAs in the future. I saw the LR ones on Wheelers a long time ago.

My Icons are 2 years old w/o any rust. Maybe salt air is less agressive than road salt? I do wash my truck twice a week though.

I'm interested to see more when you swap the UCAs out.
 

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The price is better for sure. I only care about strength, quality, and customer service. I could care less about "the cool brand" . Guess I need to do a little more research.

I also like Solo Motorsports UCAs. I think they make quality parts and I like the idea of supporting a smaller company.

Sorry for the build thread jack.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Even if the LR UCAs were $1500 I'd still get 'em. Price had nothing to do with my decision, but it's always a plus when they cost less than the cool kids toys.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I just ordered my 5.29s and install kits from Cruiseroutfitters. Looking forward to selectable front and rear lockers, with 5.29s.

I'm also trying to decide which winch I want to go with. I'm liking the price and features of the smittybilt x20 8k comp. I also like the superwinch talon 9.5 option. Both are fully submersible underwater.
 

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After a seemingly endless cycle of vehicles,
Man, you got it super bad! You know there is group therapy available for "Vehiculi Non-keepum Longus". It is not a cure but it can help.

On the build side, have you considered ditching the auto trans radiator and using a stand alone trans cooler with a man trans radiator that sits flush with the bottom of the frame? I know you are well steeped in the Toyota build community but it seems a shame this early in the game to custom fab up a high clearance bumper and frontal armor around the protruding "Beluga Head" of the auto radiator. Additionally the integral coolers have been known to fail, mixing coolant with trans fluid. With the mileage on the rig and your expected use???? I don't know, just a thought.

Any way, have fun and try not to shame folks with your "light speed" work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
On the build side, have you considered ditching the auto trans radiator and using a stand alone trans cooler with a man trans radiator that sits flush with the bottom of the frame? I know you are well steeped in the Toyota build community but it seems a shame this early in the game to custom fab up a high clearance bumper and frontal armor around the protruding "Beluga Head" of the auto radiator. Additionally the integral coolers have been known to fail, mixing coolant with trans fluid. With the mileage on the rig and your expected use???? I don't know, just a thought.
Excellent point! I need to do this. I didn't realize there was a difference in the radiators, thank you for pointing that out. I was planning on a tranny cooler at one point. Not sure which brands are recommended. I'll look into that before starting on the bumper. Thank you very much.
 

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With the manual trans radiator you can start the slant of your front skid right at the front mount location. I would also replace that really flimsy stock front mount with a real cross-member. This not only helps to strengthen the frame ends but a little fore thought can really ease the design/strength issues of mounting a winch bumper.

In the sourcing of the radiator make sure to specify at the get go that what they give you must be dimensionally the same as a man trans rad as both will "fit" in stock applications. I have heard of some parts houses providing "one size fits all" replacements.

With a manual radiator you could pretty much match the lower slope of that bumper you posted about on the red truck.

This one provides 1/2" clearance under the radiator.

 
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