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Gen 1 Tacoma project research.

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Old 06-20-2012, 02:50 PM   #1
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Gen 1 Tacoma project research.

Hello,

I'm a noob here...

I'm a Gen 1 Tacoma owner and I'm going to turn my beloved Taco into a project truck sometime in the near (or maybe not so near) future. What I'm starting to do is some research to make determinations on my design and build goals.

The first thing I'm stating is that I would like to keep the body close to stock, at least for the sake of a passing review. Second, I would like to use as many off-the-shelf, and ideally OE or direct OE replacement, parts as possible. Thirdly, I would like it to be capable of being a frequent (not quite daily though) driver. Fourthly, I would like to keep the vehicle as efficient and operationally economical as possible so I don't want to overbuild and overpower.

I'm currently assessing my past, present, and desired future off road usage to understand my specifications. Occasionally, I need to bear a load over long distances. Sometimes it's a short trip. In any case most of my offloading isn't "just to off road" but to get somewhere hard to access.

Should I stay with a spec frame, or should I build a new frame? I can shed weight by building tube frame out of 4130, but I would lose some of the desirable aspects of a carbon steel.

What should I consider with my drive line? I would like to stay IFS, as that's a lot less of a "custom" solution and is advantageous at higher speeds on unimproved roads, but I would also like some of the benefits of a SAS (clearance, articulation, durability, simplicity). Transfer case: i would like the broad gearing possibilities of dual TCs, but I don't want to add weight.

There's so many questions to ask, and i've only hinted at scratching the surface...

All I can say is that I'm not building a purpose built racing vehicle, crawler or mudder. But I would like to move around with some speed, ascend a moderately rock strewn hill, and go through more than just a 6" deep mud patch.

I'm going with my Tacoma because she's been very good to me and I'm very attached to the Gen 1 extra cab body.

I'm looking gather information about what other people have done with their trucks, for what specific purposes, and how were the results.
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Old 06-20-2012, 03:54 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum. Just search through this site and you will get lots of information. Start in the Forum list and there are many topics that you can browse. Then, if you ask a more specific question about a specific mod, you will probably get more responses.

Good luck with the build.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:47 AM   #3
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Thank you for the welcome.

I've read through a lot of other posts, and although I've only just registered, I've been reading through this board quite a bit. I'm looking to start a discussion about ideas, and not just the ones that people have implemented on their rigs. I'm looking for propositions, hypothesis, and wild-ass-dreams that others have had but haven't put to paper, forum, or steel. Ideas that someone has had, but doesn't necessarily work for them and their typical usage, so they never undertook it.

I could just look at just things that people who do my kind of offroading have done, but then I miss out on some of the sharp ideas that someone, who let's say is only interested in rock-crawling, has about building a "daily driving expedition type rig". There's a lot of people that have brilliant ideas that just don't work out for their needs so they don't necessarily discuss them.

Regards,
Jason
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Old 06-21-2012, 07:13 AM   #4
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I understand you want a lot of customization and new ideas coming out of your build. By what you said/want for your Tacoma I'd definitely feel you want something all-around capable.

I'd probably just recommend you take a look at a lot of the build threads and see what people have added (they usually mention why they added it as well). I'd recommend Box Rocket's build. He has done a lot of purposeful mods, and does some expedition travel from what he has posted.

I'd say that would be a great start to further research and developing the overall load-bearing/expedition/general off-road/DD/still fast Tacoma. Unless you go SAS I'd say the rock crawler aspect might get snipped out.

I can't say much more since I haven't done anything but browsing around. Most of my mods consist of interior or minor exterior things, and being a PreRunner I haven't really considered much else for now.

(one day I want an old 88-89 4runner and tacoma can be my DD)
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Old 06-21-2012, 11:09 AM   #5
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Is this a work thing? Or just an overland expedition type thing? I'm just curious as to what you plan to do with it.

This is one of the coolest expedition type rigs I've seen... they're a little dramatic about it but it's cool: http://www.thesupercamper.blogspot.com/
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Old 06-21-2012, 11:29 AM   #6
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If you are only going to do "moderate" offroading, not extreme, then you don't need to do anything radical.

Locker or LSD in the rear
couple of inches of lift
good shocks
good tires (I recommend Michelin or BFG all terrain type)
side/nerf bars
CB radio

You'll be surprised at how well those mod will do, and still look pretty stock.
This is what I've done (except for the locker, that is next)

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 06-21-2012, 04:51 PM   #7
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I've mostly done moderate offroading...although sometime I've pushed what the truck could do (climbing moderately bouldered hills, only made it without destroying the truck by having someone who's an experienced crawler help me pick lines).

I've got 3" of lift, diff drop, upgraded shocks (subsequently replaced after abuse). I've got stiffer springs and had a second full set of BFGs (285/70/16s iirc, and they were tough somethings or rough others, can't really recall, they were only slightly more aggressive than the all purpose tires) that were stolen when I was still apartment dwelling.

My right slider got torn off by a tree and pretty mangled (saved the rocker though) still don't know if I want to remake them bolt on or make up a pair of weldons.

Everything's been stripped off the truck since two years ago when I brought it for the frame inspection (frame integrity is still suspect to me). This mostly due to the first two years of fatherhood, fortunately my boy is fascinated by trucks and offroading (we've taken him out in my wife's JK wrangler).

I'm thinking of bending up a roll cage, some new tube bumpers, winch mount....even making a nifty QD for the plow mount so I don't have to monkey with the mounting bolts when I want to regain approach clearance.

Since there's some issues with rust on the frame (but no perforation to merit getting a new on) I've been toying with the idea of fabbing a new one, giving me a chance to potentially shed a few pounds (I'd like to stay as close as possible to net neutral weight when I'm done)

The thoughts go on and on...

I think I'd just like to go 30-40% further with the capabilities than where the Toyota engineers left off...she was a relatively tough truck with no work...
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:21 PM   #8
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BTW, she came with an elocker in the rear, I'll definitely be adding one in the front. Right now there's no CB, but I've got a 6m/2m/1.25m/70cm HT in the cab wired up to a mag mount 2m 1/4 wave. A CB will be handy, but it'll definitely get a mobile HF rig in the future...at least after I upgrade to general and then extra.
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Old 06-21-2012, 05:27 PM   #9
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And thanks, I'll go and search for box rocket to check out the rig
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