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Discussion Starter #1
I have been stalking here for sometime but haven't posted much. I have a build thread over at Central Overland since it is more my speed. I thought I would post here to get some input because I don't think most here frequent the other site. Let the critiquing of the build begin. :rolleyes: I'm going to copy and past the build over and will take a couple days to bring this post current.


tchughes
Toyota 4Runner Limited 4x4
3.4L V6

Suspension
Front-OME881 with OME Gas shocks
Rear-OME891 with OME 60027 HD shocks

Electronics
Alpine CDA-9886 Head Unit
Linear Power 2202 sub amp
Bazooka 6.5" Sub
Tom Tom cradle for iPhone wired into Alpine HU
USB connector wired into dash for external HD
iPad for navigation when on trails
Wagan Tech 1250W Inverter W/4ga power to battery
Midland 75-822 portable CB W/Wilson fiberglass antenna and custom mount
Icom IC-208H Dual Band radio W/remote faceplate, Comet RS720 mount and Comet antenna
Hella 500FF mounted to front bumper

Wheels and Tires
Wheels-Stock Coke bottle wheels
Tires-265/70/16 General Grabber AT2

Mods
DRL
VSC/TRAC
Constant 12V cig power
Deckplate

Accessories
On board air-Masterflow MF-1050 with connections at front and rear of Runner (needs work)
Custom storage box in rear hatch.

I have had my 4Runner for 3 years now and have completed very few mods due to work and staying busy with the family. I finally decided it was time to make the 4R stand out from the others and become more of an extension of myself. I have been a lurker on the T4R.org checking out builds and using it as a resource for any repairs I needed to perform. I was lucky enough to stumble across a very nice build by jsmarine and while looking through his posts he mentioned "overland". I was curious and had to find out what "overland" was and came across theFall Foilage trip planned by Mr. Leary and 6string which I fortunately got to tag along on. This set me on a course to build up the 4R for more Overland travel as opposed to simply crawlin a few rocks or balls out running through mud.

The base for the build is a 2002 4Runner Limited 4WD with a 3.4l V6. I have performed a few electrical modes such as the daytime running lights, VSC/TRAC control off and constant 12V power outlets. I'm going to use this post to throw out what I'm working on and hopefully gain suggestions from everyone here that has already worked through the plus's and minus's of each mod. Feel free to provide suggestions, I will need all the help I can get.

I don't have any pics from the day I purchased her but she needed a ton of work. I massaged the paint to get her looking good and removed the seats and center console to clean up the interior. This is the closest I can get to how she looked when I picked her up but this is after major cleaning.


I was fortunate to talk with a great gentleman from Arkansas Crawlers and he took me on a tour of the 1,2 and easy 3 trails at the Superlift ORV park in Hot Springs, AR. Before heading out there I removed the running boards to add a little more ground clearance.


That pretty well brings us up to today. I stumbled across someone in mid build that purchased OME 891 rear springs and decided they were to stiff for his use and wanted to sell them. He had only installed them for a couple of days before removing. Of course, I grabbed these for $140 shipped which isn't bad. Looking through the forums here I found that Mr. Leary was replacing his front suspension and I grabbed his pull off's, which were OME 881 springs with OME gas shocks. Thanks Leary.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
While I was lurking through the forums and trying to decide exactly what course I would take with the 4R I came across a few Mods that were being done to 3rd gens. I decided to give this one a go.

The TRAC/VSC or also knows as ATRAC on the 4R attempts to act like a limited slip diff. When the ECU senses a wheel starting to slip it applies the brakes to that wheel forcing power to the other wheels. I believe the 2WD models came with and override switch but this was not included on the 4WD models. This mod was originally performed under the hood and it would also override the ABS brakes, which could be dangerous. The new "Andy Mod 2.0" allows you to disable TRAC/VSC and the ABS brakes controls remain intact.

Since I spent a few years installing car stereos and alarms system it doesn't bother me to pull the dash apart and find the wires needed to perform these mods. I want as many mods as possible to appear OEM so that they blend well and don't interfere with the function of the 4R.

Since the mod only requires the momentary disconnect of a certain wire I decided to go with a Toyota factory switch. I wasn't able to find a rocker switch I liked so I decided to go with a TRAC button from a Toyota Avalon.This is a push and hold type switch, which when wired with a 12V relay allows me to momentarily disconnect the red wire with black tracer and turn off TRAC/VSC. The only drawback to this mod is that it will require a restart of the vehicle to re-enable TRAC/VSC.

In the last two months we have had a total of 14 inches of snow and this have given a real chance to play with this mod. During a recent snow I allowed my daughter to drive in a vacant parking lot with a minimum of 6 inches of snow. I started her off in 2WD with no TRAC/VSC and with her lack of experience she spun each time she applied the gas. Next, she tried 4WD with no TRAC/VSC and had better results but still was able to spin the tires. Finally, she went with 4WD and TRAC/VSC on, which allowed her to pull away with almost no tire spin. I also had her make extremely sharp turns and apply gas which resulted in slow easy turns. Of course we did put it back in 2WD with no TRAC/VSC and drift across the parking lot a few times so she could have fun. :D

12V 5pin SPDT Relay

Andy Mod 2.0

 

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Discussion Starter #3
I spent an hour this morning hunting down 6 qts. of Mobile 1 75W-90, I didn't know it was in such demand. I also had to run around finding a 10 and 12MM hex bits. Once I was fully frustrated dealing with the 18 year olds working the counters I finally got busy replacing the fluids.

Everything has been changed except the transmission. I didn't realize how much smoother everything would be once this was complete. All the fluids look pretty good except the rear diff which was pretty black, I may give this some time and change it again. The front and rear diff each had a little builed up on the magnets but it looked like normal wear.

Nice day wrenching.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I was sick most of this week and didn't get out of the house much. Today I decided I needed to get out and get some fresh air. When I built the storage box in the back I pulled my amplifier and little 6.5" Bazooka tube and hadn't put it back in. I spent a little time and got that reinstalled.

The bigger project I decided to work on was improving the appearance of rear bumper cover. The plastic cover was originally a dark gray color but had faded over the years and was looking really bad. I have also decided I want to get rid of as much chrome as possible and make it black (I think). So, making the bumper cover black would fit into my plans (should fit with original black pearl emblems). On a few other forums I read that people were using Plasti-Dip or Plasti Kote to cover their wheels and wheel flares to make everything black and thought this would work perfectly. I even found a post where a guy panted his Lexus emblems black with this stuff and it looked pretty sweet.

This afternoon I pulled the cover off which was pretty simple. I popped one corner out and reached behind the bumper and squeezed the tab together and pushed it through the metal, once started it came off pretty easily.


You can tell from this photo how faded the cover was. The darker section is under the rear hatch when closed so it never see's the sun. From what I have read applying Plasti Dip is a simple wash with soap and water, dry and apply. I thought I would try this and see how well it works and if its really that simple. If not I will just order a new cover from Jacque at toyotapartsales.com.


I sprayed a good covering coat the first go, probably a little heavier than I would have with regular paint but covered all the gray. As you can see it looked pretty good with only one coat.



I figured if one coat looks that good then more is better. Right? The can says 3-4 coats and I only got two coats out of the first can so I figured I would go with 4 and just use both cans. Once 4 coats are on you will loose the original texture of the cover but it looks really good. Once sprayed it has to sit for a minimum of 4 hours before using so I'm letting it chill over night in the garage and will put it back on tomorrow. I'll throw up more pics tomorrow once complete.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Woo Hoo, We have Ham in the house and not the kind you eat. ;)



Oh and CB too.

 

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All the electronics for the communications system were delivered but I'm still waiting on the antenna and mount for the Ham and a mount for the CB antenna.

I originally thought of going all out and pulling from my car stereo days and using some ABS plastic or some fiberglass and bondo to create a custom holder in the small overhead console between the visors. I remembered reading through RSB's build and remembered him mentioning that he wasn't crazy about the controls for the dual band radio being up high and it needed to be more line of sight when driving. This convinced me to get all comms close to the factory location of the radio and the climate controls.

Since the ICON 208H has the ability to relocate the controls from the actual radio and they are extremely compact I decided to build a custom mount and place the controls above A/C vents in the center of the dash. I had a piece of 26 gauge sheet metal laying around and started cutting. I also have plans to do something similar on the opposite side for the CB mount. :D

It started as this.


I cut a strip about 2" wide and 4" long. I slide this between the A/C vent blades and the actual vent to get the basic shape needed.


I put a small bend on what will be the top to strengthen the mount and before it got to late I put a quick coat of paint on it to dry tomorrow. This will also keep the mount from marring the plastic while test fitting. The plan is to attach the mount to the vent with several bolts to hold in place. The controls are so light weight it wont take much to hold in place. I plan on using a thin velcro to attach so the controls can be pulled and reattached to the main radio if needed.



Test fit.


Temp install to see if I still like this area after driving into work tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I took the wife and a couple that are really good friends out to the Ouachita's today since they have been asking about Overland. We covered some really nice area, especially south of Lake Wynona. Here are a couple pics of the trip. I didn't take many but of course wish I had. I still need to pull the rest from the camera. These are from my phone.

UPDATE: Link to my post for the trip




 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm sure many of you have seen my post on here about the squeak that developed after I installed the OME lift. I have always felt there was something I missed or simply failed to do. Although the lift did ride better it always felt just a little off. I think I finally determined what the squeaking in the front was and as I thought it was from my newbness or lack of thoroughness. I have read through every forum I could find about installing a lift and finally hit coonass (trdparts4u) up and asked if he could send me the exploded view of the front spring shock assembly. Yep, I found it, I forgot to add the bushing on top of the top plate. Today I spent several hours pulling the springs again and fixing the issue. I failed to install these the first time because it appeared they simply would not fit. Today I did't take no for an answer and found a way. Also, I took this opportunity to lube everything before re-assembling. At this time I am squeak free, we will see how the rear suspension holds up.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The family and I headed the to the Ouachitas this morning to check out a couple of camping areas we came across on our last trip. Unfortunately, my daughter started feeling ill on the way (read:didn't want to go) so we made a large loop around Little Rock and headed to the house. Since I had plans to be out of the house all day and those were shot I did a little work on the 4Runner.

I have plans to rebuild the storage box in the back with something similar to Roadtripcrazed's design on ExPo so I'm slowly moving everything out of the current box. Today I moved my Superflow MF-1050 to the engine compartment and we will see how well it holds up. I moved a couple of factory pieces on the passenger fender well to make room and need to finish securing them down. I was able to use a factory bolt that is welded into the fender-well which helped make the mount solid. After a quick Lowe's run I got started. I haven't plumbed it yet but here are a few pics.

The two pieces I moved.


Mounting bolts in place.


Close up of the mounts.


Test fit.


Installed.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ok, thats a good start. I will try to get the rest of the posts up in the next couple days.
 

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Good looking 4Runner! Probably the best looking of the 3rd gens :cool:
Jordan, thanks for the kind words. She will be a mild build since I'm not into rocks but I want her to be capable and protected. This is also my daily driver so she has to remain dependable.

Sent from my SGH-I777 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Keep it clean! That's too nice to put on the rocks!
It only took one trip to the ORV park to determine it wasn't for me. It did let me know how capable the Runner is in stock form. I hit all 1's and 2's with some mild 3's thrown in and the Runner made it with only a little rock rash on the tires. It has some redneck pin strips form the trips but they add character.

My plan is to set it up for one man camping and throwing a kayak on top to fish out of. Sleep platform and a frig in the back will be coming soon as time permits and MONEY.
 

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Keep it clean! That's too nice to put on the rocks!
whatchu talkin bout willis?!?!

:D


Glad you're keeping it out of the rocks, but it's too much fun for me to pass up haha. Yours is still coming along well!

I'm kind of interested in the TRAC/VSC off mod but I don't know if it completely applies to me mainly bc of the fact I have a independently wired elocker. In most occasions while offroad, I'm usually using it anyways. I think I'd be interested in disabling of the ABS more than anything during offroad. Have you looked into that? I think ABS is horrible for these vehicles when it comes to any slippage other than on road where it's beneficial. Even then, I still have my second thoughts/doubts about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
whatchu talkin bout willis?!?!

:D


Glad you're keeping it out of the rocks, but it's too much fun for me to pass up haha. Yours is still coming along well!

I'm kind of interested in the TRAC/VSC off mod but I don't know if it completely applies to me mainly bc of the fact I have a independently wired elocker. In most occasions while offroad, I'm usually using it anyways. I think I'd be interested in disabling of the ABS more than anything during offroad. Have you looked into that? I think ABS is horrible for these vehicles when it comes to any slippage other than on road where it's beneficial. Even then, I still have my second thoughts/doubts about it.
The rocks are fun but I would have to have a dedicated rig to do that with. I can see myself getting a little stupid and destroying a daily driver. :xrocker:

I would have to go back and read up on the VSC/TRAC mod again, its been a couple years since I set it up. I recall reading that when VSC/TRAC is disable that ABS is disabled also but don't hold me to that. I will look around again and see what I can dig up.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Here ya go JWaldz.

Andy MOD, I believe this disables ABS also. You may want to research a little more on this.
http://www.yotatech.com/f127/disabling-vsc-trac-2001-2002-4runner-vsc-trac-systems-103814/

Andy MOD 2.0, this is what I did so I still have ABS when I disable.
http://www.yotatech.com/f2/andymod-2-0-abs-remains-active-204623/

Andy MOD 2.0 is similar to what I did but I used a stock momentary switch with a relay. I wanted to keep the stock look and wasn't unable to find a VSC/TRAC rocker switch. I ordered my switch form eBay and it had been pulled from an Avalon.
 

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I was able to leave work a little early today since I have been working from home to help cover due to the recent storms. Since it was nice I decided to get outside and start working on a few things to tidy up the Runner before the Cinco de Mayo trip.

I started with pulling the compressor apart and and tapped the output for a standard 1/4 inch NPT thread so I could use basic fittings from any hardware store. I still need to plan out the plumbing for the Runner but that may have to come in the future since I can't find high pressure 1/4" tubing locally. Before doing this the cheap gauge that came on the compressor would show a max pressure of 100psi after making the change it is up to 140psi. I'm sure this isn't accurate but it was a considerable improvement.



Recently I realized that my hella's weren't working along with my bypass for the VSC/TRAC control so I dug into the dash to correct this. I found that the power wire I used for these was nicked by a bracket and the fuse blew. The fuse has been replaced, wire repaired and split loomed for future protection.

Future project (hopefully before trip):
Just picked up some OME 60027 shocks from gentleman on t4r for 80 bucks. Less than 10 months old with only 6000 miles. I'm sure some would only purchase new but for those of us on a budget to for modding this was a great find. :p
 

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I got the shocks in today and wanted to get these on for the Cinco trip to see how I like them. I was able to get these for a decent price so if I don't like the ride I can go with something a little softer. Here are a couple pics.

OME 60027, Heavy Duty shocks.


I had to get the Runner high enough for my fat butt to crawl under there. =))


Getting to the top of the shocks was insane. The wife stepped out while I was working and had to take this pic.
DISCLAIMER: I dont recommend crawling under any vehicle like this. [-x
 

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It's been over six months since I was able to get out and work on the Runner. Family and finances have taken a hit in the last 6-8 months and this really slowed the opertunity to get out of town or work on the Runner. Everything is starting to level out but due to a change in my wifes job any major updates or a vehicle change will have to wait. Over the last couple of weekends I have been able to get outside and work on the 4R a liitle more just to help clear the head.

I purchased a grille on craigslist last summer with the intent of performing the satoshi grille mod but never found time. A photo of the grille on CL was black and I thought this would be easy since it didn't have chrome. Once home and looking the grille over I quickly realized the seller had painted the chrome black, making my job much harder. Due to the time change and a recent need to get out of the house, I started working on the grille. I cut out the center section and smoothed everything down. I have started sanding down the chrome sections but need to keep working on this. Below are a couple pics of the original grill and a couple test fittings.



 
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tchughes
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