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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I bought Kevin's (Zanyzonies) old '85 4Runner (Toyzilla) from Brian, and decided even though its pretty much built already, I'd start a thread here and just keep track of what I do to it to make it mine.

I don't know how long it'll take me to get her buttoned up, or how long I'll be able to wait before I take her out for a run... but I should have Zilla "trail ready" in a month or two. I mean, she's a little old and needs some TLC, but is mostly already built as you guys know. Before I take it out and really work it on a hard trail I'd like to order some parts and get some more recovery gear for the rig, work on the winch (replace it if needed), get some new mirrors I can see out of, fix the horn, get a hi-lift jack for it, get a CB and stereo working in it, replace the busted center console so it'll close and stuff will stay in there, etc.

In terms of large items its mostly just the steering (needs a pump at least, and probably a steering box rebuild, Also need to replace the hydro return line, which leaks, or it may just need a whole new PSC setup - it leaks a TON! ), then a few other items like fixing the e-brake (frayed cable that won't release) and wiring up or replacing the aux/rock lights with some LED Tantrums like I put on the D-cab, replacing a cable in the tailgate for the latch so the rear window will go up and down, and then I want to look for some comfortable bucket seats (because the factory ones pretty much suck) and a set of harnesses to replace the worn-out factory belts. It's leaking motor oil too, but it looks like that might just be at the drain plug. Yeah, its just a number of little things that I would like to have working so its both safe and convenient/comfortable for road and trail.

Anyway, here she sits pretty much the way I bought her (all I did at this point is remove some stickers, sand some rust away and spray over the exo with some flat black)...





 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Update: ATF fluid from the hydro assist leaking onto the alternator fried it internally on the way back from MVD Prescott where we were swapping the title and getting the new registration (valid through August of 2015 for just $65)! Add to that the fact that insurance only runs $25 per month - and I have to say, old rigs rock! But still, draining all the juice out of an Optima Yellowtop when the Alt died left me sitting on the side of the road in my "new" rig at the Bumblebee exit in the rain, waiting for a ride which kinda sucked. I've had my two Tacomas for 12 and 8 years respectively and neither has ever left me stranded like this thing did within a few days of buying it. :rolleyes: So now, priority one on this build is to go through the whole thing and fix any little annoying issues like this leaky hydro assist setup and the resulting electrical problem and make this rig reliable again!

I am dealing with the electrical Gremlin in this thing now, trying to figure it all out. Going to pull all the aftermarket wiring to things like rock lights that don't work anyway (wired thru 4 separate switches in the cab!), multiple redundant kill switches hidden all over the truck, etc. When you open the hood aside from all the stickers the first thing you think is, "Damn, what's with all the extra wiring?" The electrical add-ons on this thing leave something to be desired, so I have a bit of work ahead of me sorting it all out. I suck at electical stuff myself, so I might need to recruit some help. But this thing will be ready to go before I take it out again. I hate it when vehicles break down, which is why I love Toyotas. So some TLC is going into Zilla. Its just going to take a little longer than I originally had hoped to get it buttoned up.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
What Toyzilla Came With...

Here is an (UPDATED) list of some of the extras that came on this '85 4Runner...

Front Lock-rite locker
Rear Detroit Locker
Cryo'd 5.29 gearing, F&R
Chevy 63's in the rear, (wheelbase is ~106-inches)
AllPro 3-inch buggy springs up front
Marlin extended shock hoops on the front
14-inch travel shocks front and rear
Diff armor, F&R
Front axle gussets
Custom 1.5-inch diameter .120 wall exo cage with .240 wall double thickness (.120 wall 1.25 inch dia tube inside .120 wall 1.50 dia tube) at the A-pillar
Custom rock sliders
Custom tube bumpers F&R
Rear swing-out spare tire carrier, jerry can holder and Hi-lift mount
9,000 lb. winch, w/ roller fairlead and cable line
All-Pro Triple-X dual-case cross member with pinion e-brake
Reinforced motor mounts
Trail Gear Hydro assist steering with plumed IFS streering box
Marlin Hi-steer
Marlin Ultimate dual crawler transfer case's with 4.70-1 in rear
220:1 crawl ratio
Twin sticks on rear T-case
Rebuilt motor with new plugs, wires, etc.
37 x 12.5 Creepy Crawlers
American Racing steel 32 bolt 15x10" bead locks.
(with matching brand new full-sized spare Creepy Crawler)
Custom crawler double cardan drive line's from Arizona Driveline's
New clutch & fly wheel & new clutch master cylinder.
'87 rear axle completely rebuilt with new bearings, seals, brake drums & brakes
Front axle re-built -- bearings, seals, bushing, knuckles, inner & outer felts
Bobby Longfield 30 spline axles and super birfields
New from Marlin S-80 Land Cruiser vented rotors & brakes
Land Cruiser master cylinder, new extended braided brake lines F & R, with 2" spacers. (Taco Ray did most of this work)
Safari Snorkle
Black Diamond electric radiator fan.
Rear frame plated
Toy Box Auto all new 2" exaust with cat
New fuel pump & sending unit inside the tank
Chromo Hub Gears and new sleves
Aisin manual locking hubs
1.5-inch wheel adapters up front
2-inch wheel adapters in the rear
Extended diff breather tubes
Spare inner and outer front axle shaft
Spare rear axle shaft
Pair of half doors (unfinished)

I don't know whether the rear axle shafts in it right now are factory, or stronger aftermarket shafts. But yeah, its pretty well built and just needs some maintenance.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Updated the list in previous post with details from previous owners (Thanks Brian)!

How is the rig coming along? OK so far... So the new high output 160 amp alternator came in, but the steering box is out of the Runner and sent off being rebuilt now. A bunch of the old aftermarket wiring has been removed at this point (starting to re-do some of it). Replaced the return line on the hydro assist setup which was leaking. Still need to spend some time cleaning her up a little from all the leaking fluid mess where it splashed and dripped all over everything inside the engine bay, hood and underneath, etc. I thought I had a line on a slightly used set of racing seats but that fell through, so I might just buy some cheap new ones. Still looking into it.

Melanie and I are leaving for 19 days of fun in Costa Rica soon, so this'll be on hold until I get back. But its getting done - slowly but surely. Was gonna post up pics with the new wheels and tires (15 x 8 aluminum Outlaw II wheels and a set of BFG MT KM2s in 35 12.5 15) for mixed weekday commuting and weekend wheeling while we are on the job in SoCal this year. I'll try to get some pics up when we get back from vacation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Well, Zilla wants to be a dedicated trailer queen I think. She couldn't handle even a few weeks of life as a daily driver and retaliated on my way home from work today when she suddenly wobbled and shimmied and spit out the rear driveline on the freeway in a hail of sparks and gear oil. When it went, it cracked the housing on the t-cases, adapter, and the ass-end of the transmission. So Zilla is down. For how long, who knows. Still need to evaluate whether I should just cut my losses and sell or part her out or go ahead and rebuild her. Kinda wishing I had just swapped my D-cab instead at the moment, but I'm just sour from seeing Zilla on a flat-bed tow truck before I ever saw her on a real trail... But maybe in a few days I'll feel better about doing a six-million-dollar-man with this beast to rebuild her and will start making plans.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Carnage Pics

Here's how Zilla looks sitting in front of the apartment with her new Outlaw II wheels and 35 12.5 KM2s that only have about 500 miles on them.


Well, I finally uploaded some pics. What's wrong in these pictures... Yeah, that's right, PLENTY!























I'm still shopping for parts, so if any of you have some, please shoot me a PM.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Today I picked up a set of dual T-cases (21 spline and stock gearing in both). So I'll either get those into Zilla to just get it rolling again and get me back on the trails, or send the cases out to be rebuilt beefier. Still deciding on that. Also picked up a set of 30-spline manual hubs. So the parts collecting to rebuild Zilla has finally begun. :) Stay tuned...
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Heavy-walled DS at Speeds!

Well, the good news continues... It looks like when the rear drive shaft went it caused even more damage than I originally thought. :mad: Turns out that the guts of both cases are totalled as expected, and of course, it needs a new rear drive shaft, but also the tranny is no good internally as well as the rear of the housing (missing teeth on 5th gear which is the gear it was in when it blew). So I am into a tranny rebuild or replacement scenario for sure. Also the rear third member was damaged and it now needs to be rebuilt with a new ring and pinion, bearing, etc. This AllPro cross member and e-brake setup is pretty messed up, so I am probably going to need a new crossmember, and I will need to rig up a parking brake in it if I want to have one - which probably means going back to the factory setup. So this whole thing has been pretty damn frustrating!

My advice is never, ever, drive a rig with a heavy-walled drive shaft on the hwy at 65mph. Now that I have seen all the damage it can cause if it catches a wobble, I have to say that if you want to run a heavy walled shaft, that means you'd better trailer the thing or else drive like grandma wherever you go. Its just not worth the risk otherwise. :2cents:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
We are trying to make the Jamboree in Colorado this weekend but its going to be really tight. The tranny is ready to go back into the truck. The dual T-cases I picked up are being rebuilt to run the twin stick setup that is in the Runner now. That rear third member is out and being rebuilt. A new custom length rear drive shaft for the beast should be done Friday. Waiting on parts from AllPro to rebuild the pinion e-brake right now. Plenty still to be done before this thing sees another trail, but with the help I have enlisted I could be wheeling as soon as this weekend if everything falls into place. ::fingers crossed::
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Zilla lives!

The guys at Yotamasters pulled off a minor miracle and got Zilla back together tonight. She's alive once again. Now its time to go out and wheel and see if she stays that way this time. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Colorado and BV Carnage

So we towed Zilla out here to Colorado for some summer wheeling with friends. Managed to get her through Black Bear Pass, Imogene Pass, Hurricane Pass, Poughkipsie Gulch, 21 Road, Holy Cross, Iron Chest and most of BV Carnage before she disintegrated on me. Tons of fun wheeling up here in CO while it lasted. But Zilla is broken again. I bound her up climbing on the driver's side pivoting through a squeeze about 2/3 of the way through BV Carnage when the front diff blew. Before the night was through the steering box developed a leak and started puking ATF. Some teflon tape and a bit of wrenching seemed to have solved that problem at least enough to get back to the trailer. Then the winch saw too much use trying to get her off the trail in 2wd and developed a short of some kind, then overloaded and blew the main fuse in the box (twice). Then she fried the high output alternator, and eventually ripped one of the rear spring hangers clean off of the frame rail and the other about 90% off (they were booger welded to the thin factory frame rails out near the end with no boxing or reinforcement, so that was probably inevitable).

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2330441699904&set=a.1782915292086.2106377.1215592637&type=1&theater#!/media/set/?set=a.1782915292086.2106377.1215592637&type=1

Time to go on another parts search and do some frame reinforcement/rebuilding.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Well, I got a new high pinion third with a Detroit locker ready to go into Zilla if I ever get any free time from work. MrDoug has been doing some welding and fabbing up some slick new spring and shackle hangers for the Chevy 63's in the rear, fabbed a new rear crossmember, and is tracking down some electrical gremlins, etc.

Those rear spring hangers were hanging me up a lot on Carnage Canyon. The more forward mounting position necessary for the longer Chevy 63's puts the hanger closer to the breakover point than it is with shorter factory springs, so the steep angle of the hangers that were on there made great rock anchors! I am stoked to be getting nice ramped hangers that I am more likely to be able to grind over and keep rolling down the trail. So the rebuilding and parts collecting has been under way for a while. I just haven't posted up until now. ;)

She's got a working high output (160 amp) alternator BTW, and the Optima battery is still good... oh and the rear window goes up and down now that it has been properly wired, so I can actually use the swing-out tire carrier, roll down the window, drop the tailgate and get to the tools and spares in the bed without climbing in from the front. That'll be convenient. I've got a new set of Tantrums to install for night run use, and will have to play with the lights front and rear. I might setup some backup lights like I did on the D-cab so I can see behind me. Still looking for a set of seats, mounts and harnesses and might be lifting the seat height a bit for improved visibility.

What else? ...I got the parts I needed to set up the AllPro pinion parking brake. The inside frame rails at the transfer case skid mounting locations have begun to cave in some, so the frame is going to need some plating added in there. That'll be a project in itself. I still need to collect some trail spares like driveshafts, and have the old front third rebuilt as a spare. No idea because I have not torn into it yet, but I wonder if the lock-rite locker is toast along with the R&P in that old front third.

There is some footage of Zilla on Carnage Canyon from last year posted up here...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_B1KyMOVPI



Anyway, there is still plenty to do and plenty more I haven't listed here. But its happening slowly but surely. Zilla is being revitalized. Stay tuned.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Pics

This thread is getting a little text heavy, so here are some pics of some recent :welder: on Zilla...

New rear crossmember installed after removing the old shackle hangers and beefing up the ends of the frame where the old hangers tore off while I was wheeling it... :cool:






New 14-inch long ramped spring hangers for the Chevy 63s in the rear... No more spring hanger rock anchors! :D


New ride height with steeper shackle angle. Also the flimsy bent rear wraparound bumper has been cut off to be replaced with something beefier and a bit more tucked up...


And I picked up a new TG High Pinion front third member with 5.29's and a Detroit locker -- built by Jay King at Yotamasters. We'll see if I can break this one.


She's geting there. More to come...
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Rear Shocks & X-member

More :saw: :welder: work being done by MrDoug...

So Zilla is getting a new rear shock X-member installed and measurements for rear shocks are being taken (going with 12-inch travel Billie 7100 short bodies - exactly the same shock and size as I run on the rear axle of my Double-cab Tacoma)...







Also ordering the axle service kit from Marlin for the front axle... new bearings, seals, etc. So when I finally get up to CO and we install the new HP front third member, the rest will be serviced while we're at it. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Corbeau Suspension Seats!

So these factory seats in the '85 are still usable, but on long drives/trails they have become so uncomfortable I finally decided they just need to be replaced. I just ordered some new Corbeau suspension seats, brackets and harnesses for added comfort and safety in Zilla! :D Front seats only for now, since its typically just myself, and sometimes the wife and I hitting the trails. :cool:


***Edit***




The driver's seat is all bolted in, but the passenger side bracket does not line up with the bolt holes, even though it was supposed to be a model-specific item that was a bolt-in fit. So we need to cut off a couple tabs, flip them around and weld them on the right way to the seat bracket on the passenger side.



Nice going there, Corbeau.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
The new 12-inch travel Billstein 7100 short body external reservoir shocks arrived to replace the old worn-out shocks and are now mounted up to the new shock tabs on the axle housing and the new shock crossmember above.



The gas tank is back in the rig now. She's getting there, but there is still lots more to be done, including at least:

-Set up the bumpstops on the rear axle.
-Design and fabricate a rear bumper with bracing and tie it into the exo (made a run to the steel shop and picked up some 2x2-inch quarter-wall square tube for the rear bumper fab).
-Have to cut out the old and install the new front frame crossmember (bought the one by Sky Offroad Design) and plate/box that in where its open on the bottom (why didn't they box that in)?
-The AllPro T-case skid crossmember where it mounts to the frame might need to be re-welded on the passenger side before she sees another trail. I need to get under there and look at the welds more closely.
-The new Pinion E-brake that bolts up to the AllPro crossmember needs to be installed and adjusted.
-There's a bit more wiring to do, but most of it is done. Mr. Doug pulled out the dash and tracked all the wiring, removing unnecessary B.S. wiring from previous hack jobs and rewiring properly where needed on items like that Black Diamond fan, the A/C unit, pretty much all the electrical accessories, lights, etc.
-I've got a set of Tantrum rock lights that need to be installed for night runs.
-Front axle service kit arrived from Marlin, so I need to tear into the front axle and replace seals, bearings, etc.
-Front third member that I blew up on Carnage needs to come out and be replaced with this new High Pinion third.
-A/C needs to be recharged.
-Need to pick up some D-rings to weld on for recovery points on the rear bumper.
-Need to find a good shop to build a set of custom-length heavy-walled driveshafts for trail spares.
-Hydro-assist setup needs to be gone through, yet again. It had been leaking fluid for so long before I bought the rig. Even after having the steering box rebuilt, new hydro lines installed, etc it sprung a leak last time I wheeled it... the whole damned setup might need to be replaced with full hydro. I don't know for sure yet on that.
-Extend tailpipe.
-Whatever else I'm either forgetting about or haven't ran across yet time will tell, but its getting there.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Starting in on the front end...


Here you can see the previously fabricated angle iron front crossmember addition and the front spring hangers (welded to the body mounts). That angle iron piece and the spring hangers are going.

After some:saw:
... Out with the old. This is all being replaced with a new front cross member from Sky's Offroad that comes with integrated front spring hangers which is getting welded right to the frame and across the plated factory crossmember. No tearing the front spring hangers off the frame like I did with the rear hangers on this rig the last time I took it out to Carnage!


Oh, and that steering stabilizer is going away as well.

Here's the new crossmember that is going in...


That open bottom edge of the Sky's Offroad crossmember is going to get boxed in with plate as well. Where's the beef!
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Front Third Member Carnage

No surprise here, but this is a sample of what I found inside the axle housing when I pulled the front diff...


It looks like that Lock-Rite locker might have survived the carnage when the ring and pinion blew up. But have a look at how those teeth blew completely off. Looks like good R&P engagement, just too much for the gears to take. Zilla needs to loose some weight and/or I need to learn to wheel some easier trails! I know what you're thinking... Tons, right?


***EDIT***
I took this diff down to ZUK to have it rebuilt for use as a trail spare, since I replaced the front with the HP diff. ZUK got back to me after tearing into the diff, and reports that he did not set up that diff, and it has the cheapest ring gear ever made (the economy Genuine Gear)... So I don't feel so bad about blowing it up on something that did not seem big enough to justify it blowing. I was misled with regards to that diff... probably by mistake. Both Kevin and Brian seem like stand-up guys, and I have no problem giving them the benefit of the doubt. The rear was definitely ZUK's work. But this one was not. It is being rebuilt by ZUK now!




Lots of parts in the front axle, knuckles, etc...


Pulled the studs from the housing to be replaced with new ones.


The Longfields are still looking shiny and new, which is good. No hub gear carnage either...

I went ahead and pulled the engine's oil pan since it was leaking from a clearly overtightened old school cork gasket which was popping out the sides. The bottom end of the engine looked OK to me from what I could see from underneath. I also cleaned up the oil pan inside and out, went over all the gasket surfaces to clean it all up, wiped it down with brake cleaner and slapped on some black RTV/FIPG. Hopefully it stops dripping motor oil onto everything, or at least slows down some.

We picked up some button-head bolts for the front third, and all the grease, fluids, filters, etc. needed to bleed and service everything.

Been taking some time to spray, wipe, scrape, burn, etc. off some of the built up oil, dirt, grease, ATF, oversprayed spray-on undercoat, and just general layer of gunk all over the rig basically from the oil pan down. I pulled that steering stabilizer off. Prepping to weld on the new front crossmember, but after a test fit I see I need to do some more grinding.

Stay tuned. More pics to follow.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
High Pinion Front Diff

Well, I got all the new button head diff studs installed with red locktite coming through from inside the housing... so no more pulling the studs out when I remove the nuts to drop the third! The new High Pinion third member is now on with a new black RTV "gasket." Check out the beefy HP housing... its about twice as thick at the mating surface as the old third member was.

I had to widen the notches in the axle housing that are there for the ring gear to clear as they were not wide enough for the diff to slide in (the ring gear was hanging up). Just had to open up the notches both top and bottom by about 1/4 inch more to the driver's side with an angle grinder, then clean out all the grinding dust really good and the diff slid right on...


And now I have 2 new optional drain plugs here on the bottom where I used 6mm allen bolts. Just in case I grind over the factory drain plug so much that it won't come out, or in case I ever want to just weld the factory plug on so it can't grind out on the trail like so many have.


This was basically my view for the afternoon while I installed new diff studs. Kinda cramped up under there, and I'm a little stiff this morning. But it sure is nice getting stuff done right!


All bolted back up, sealed, front driveshaft back on, etc.


Oh, I also serviced the knuckle, pounded out the old races and in the new ones, replaced the wheel bearings, trunion bearings, all new seals and gaskets, felts, etc., repacked it all with moly and wheel bearing grease. Had to clean up all the mating surfaces which entailed solvent, gasket scraper, wire wheel, etc to get all the old gunk and gasket material off and get down to clean metal, wipe it down with brake cleaner... you guys know the drill. Got the driver's side done. It takes more time cleaning up all the old parts and mating surfaces than it does to put it all together. Slapped on a new oil filter and got some new motor oil in the beast. Not leaking so far. Still need to go in and do the passenger side knuckle, then it's on to more :saw: and :welder:
 

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Discussion Starter #20
So Doug and I have become obscenely close with an angle grinder these last few days. :eek: I got the passenger side knuckle rebuilt and filled the front diff with gear oil, got the tie rod and drag link bolted back on. Then we moved on to grinding and prepping the front crossmember to be welded in. Ended up with several contaminated welds despite our best efforts to prep, since the front factory crossmember has been plated and there is a thin layer of grease and gunk in between the plating and the crossmember that gets drawn down into the welds. So weld, grind it out, reweld, grind, etc until we got nice clean welds for the most part - a la MrDoug. :D

We had to remove the radiator to get in and weld the back side of the crossmember, and had to remove an intake hose to pull the radiator out. Enough room to work now...


Boxed in the front crossmember with 1/4 wall plate before mounting it on the Runner.


Measured and made adjustments once, twice, three, four times and then got the crossmember welded in place. Still need to add some square tube supports beneath the winch mount connecting the bumper to both the factory and the aftermarket front crossmembers for support to replace the round tube we cut out. Also welded the front bumper to the frame and crossmember where it was just bolted on before. :cool:
 
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