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Discussion Starter #1
The background
After 4 years of building and traveling with Jeep Cherokees it's time for somthing different. I had a stock 97 auto, a 98 2 door 5 speed, a 99 auto, and a 2000 I called Frank.


This was frank when I bought it. Rust free Texas shell no drivetrain or rear suspension. Over the last few months it got its heart and ran first turn of the key which is important because I jumped into jeeps head first with no knowledge and somehow pulled it off. The rest of it can be seen here

The 97+ Franken Jeep - Jeep Cherokee Forum



 

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Discussion Starter #2
A few weeks ago I cut a deal with a friend of mine for the jeep, hes stationed in germany looking for one to daily and travel with and I was looking for somthing different. I agreed to sell him the jeep and "bought" this 01 Tacoma from another friend of mine down state.



The bed sides are rough but to me its not a big deal (remember im used to jeep rot).

The good
New 32" tires, new bilstien shocks, Trd and Sr5 packages, full skids and the factory rear locker.
The cab, floors, frame, and bed floor is all solid it's just the rockers and the bed sides that need to be replaced after winter.

The bad
I haven't found it yet, it seems like the truck is going to work better for my goals in the end
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The plan
To build a new overland style rig with the tacoma and continue traveling while trying to maintain a clean simple look.
Instead of a roof top tent like i planned for the jeep im gonna order an aluminum commercial cap from a.r.e. for security and "stealth" hoping to blend in with other work trucks around the US so it won't attract as much attention the flat bed overland rigs I dream about. An arb up front with a winch and ill build the rear when I figure out what I want. I'm hoping I can get a gas can or 2 mounted to one of the caps rear doors but if not those will go on the swing out for the spare when I get there. A basic basket on the roof of the cab so level off the top with the cap and a place to store smaller things and mount flood lights. Im going to try to keep it as low as possible with 33x10.5s to keep the center of gravity down. Function is more important to me than having a pretty looking mall crawler so it's gonna take some time.

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With the back story and the plan laid out I have a couple questions ive been trying to answer while I scour the forum for info.

What parts are bolt on or near bolt on compatible with my model year and upgrades between the tundra tacoma and 4runners? Axles brakes interiors and drivetrain stuff if any.

Whats a few good reputable companies to shop with? I've never touched anything rough country with the jeeps amd i dont plan to now but all I've found is so far is icon.

Is there any "free" or cheaper (<100$) mods I can do off the get go to help me get the most out of the truck like folding pinch seams trimming fenders, I've already read up on the grey wire mod.

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Hey man, good start on the truck! Lowrangeoffroad has a lot of stuff for these trucks. Check them out.

Are you planning on finding a different bed or are you just going to deal with the rust?

Has it been to a dealership to check up on recalls, maintenance or anything?

Being down here in Arizona, that rust scares the crap out of me lol.

Awesome ideas on the build though man. I like the shell idea too. A little incognito action.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hey man, good start on the truck! Lowrangeoffroad has a lot of stuff for these trucks. Check them out.

Are you planning on finding a different bed or are you just going to deal with the rust?

Has it been to a dealership to check up on recalls, maintenance or anything?

Being down here in Arizona, that rust scares the crap out of me lol.

Awesome ideas on the build though man. I like the shell idea too. A little incognito action.
I hadn't decided if i was going to fab one to replicate a m416 trailer style keeping the width of the bed rails to get flat flares for jerry cans tool boxes etc or if I was going to find another bed. But it got sold out from under me yesterday before I could go get it. No hard feelings from me though the seller is a good friend of mine and he got 3k more than he was gonna sell it to me for. I probably jinxed myself making the thread a week early haha but it is what it is. I have a few more lined up to look at through out the next 2 weeks and the general concept of the build isn't going to change. I'm really hoping I can find a another taco or maybe a tundra because of the reliability and support but I could do the same ideas with any pick up truck. My only specific criteria is pre 04, 4x4, ext or crew cab because of my little man. Skids lockers or lock outs and a manual trans are bonuses. I already have the thread so once I figure out what im getting ill just change the title accordingly
 

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I hadn't decided if i was going to fab one to replicate a m416 trailer style keeping the width of the bed rails to get flat flares for jerry cans tool boxes etc or if I was going to find another bed. But it got sold out from under me yesterday before I could go get it. No hard feelings from me though the seller is a good friend of mine and he got 3k more than he was gonna sell it to me for. I probably jinxed myself making the thread a week early haha but it is what it is. I have a few more lined up to look at through out the next 2 weeks and the general concept of the build isn't going to change. I'm really hoping I can find a another taco or maybe a tundra because of the reliability and support but I could do the same ideas with any pick up truck. My only specific criteria is pre 04, 4x4, ext or crew cab because of my little man. Skids lockers or lock outs and a manual trans are bonuses. I already have the thread so once I figure out what im getting ill just change the title accordingly


Yeah man, that's the whole reason why I got rid of my extended cab pickup and got a double cab Tacoma. Got married this year and what do ya know, a little boy on the way. So I think I lucked out with my 04.
 

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Yeah man, that's the whole reason why I got rid of my extended cab pickup and got a double cab Tacoma. Got married this year and what do ya know, a little boy on the way. So I think I lucked out with my 04.
Mines almost 5 now so I can get away with the ext. I wouldnt mind a double but im worried about having room to stretch out in the bed
 

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Mines almost 5 now so I can get away with the ext. I wouldnt mind a double but im worried about having room to stretch out in the bed


You can always build a small platform to lay on. And you can build storage drawers underneath so you're not losing much space.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Oh yeah I know that I'm talking head to foot room. I cant really stretch out in less than a 6' bed

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Yeah for sure. When my wife and I used to camp in the bed of my truck I'd always sleep on my side with my knees bent, because I'm 6' 3" hahaha.
 

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Yeah for sure. When my wife and I used to camp in the bed of my truck I'd always sleep on my side with my knees bent, because I'm 6' 3" hahaha.
Thats how it was in my cherokee till I realized all i had to do was move my front seats forward on the track lol. Its starting to look like I'm getting and ext 4x4 6' ranger
 
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