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Side Steps Lower than OEM - 2012 Tacoma DC?

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Old 01-15-2012, 08:51 AM   #1
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Side Steps Lower than OEM - 2012 Tacoma DC?

My first question posted. Seeking to replace the OEM side steps on my 2012 Tacoma double cab. At virtually the same height as the interior floorboards, almost have to jump to the ground while getting out and drop into the seat while getting in. Seems easier to just step over, not on, the side steps to get in and out (which isn't fun in itself).

Spent days looking at the various side steps / nerf bars shown in pictures throughout this website. Most didn't provide a clear impression of the height. Gave up on that process and decided to use the more direct approach (ask).

Anyway, any suggestions regarding stainless or chrome side steps / nerf bars which clearly hang lower than the floorboards or bottom of truck cab? Access is more important than off-road protection. Not overly thrilled with the look of the N-Fab or similar Avid steps.

By the way, are the mounting points on the 2012 double cab the same as earlier (2009, 2010, etc) double cab models?

Truly appreciate any guidence or suggestions. Example pictures would obviously help as well, but would be far more than I expect. Thanks.
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:16 AM   #2
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Mounting points are the same on the 2012. I got a set of Ionic 5" ovals in stainless steel for my 2012. I generally step over them, they were mainly for my wife, who loves them. See my previous post and photo: http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/2nd...ml#post4023263
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Old 01-15-2012, 11:02 AM   #3
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I pet these on a few days ago. Light and functional, Westin polished aluminum steps.







I like them, but they were more for my 5'1'' wife who uses them every time she gets in or out. They sit lower than the bottom of the truck, these might be a good option for you.
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Old 01-15-2012, 08:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drwoodr View Post
Mounting points are the same on the 2012.
That's certainly good to know.

Quote:
(snip) Ionic 5" ovals in stainless steel (snip)
Nice, but a little bit larger in diameter than I prefer.
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Old 01-15-2012, 08:07 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Metalhead77 View Post
I put these on a few days ago. (snip)
Those Westin steps might just work. Seem to sit several inches lower than the steps currently installed on my truck. Do you happen to remember the specific model number?
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Old 01-15-2012, 08:11 PM   #6
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my friend has the 2012 with the OEM steps and i just installed the n-fab steps. i think the n-fabs stick out a little farther from the body...therefore it is a little easier to get in and out of the truck. the OEM steps are a little closer, but i find myself and others hitting the door edge before actually stepping onto the steps and entering the truck. please correct me if anyone has experienced or feels different about this.
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stewartx View Post
Those Westin steps might just work. Seem to sit several inches lower than the steps currently installed on my truck. Do you happen to remember the specific model number?
Westin 23-2770 E-Series Polished Stainless Steel Side Steps
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Old 01-16-2012, 03:09 AM   #8
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The support brackets have elonged slots, at least the tubes that came on my truck do. The slots allow for some adjustments, it might be enough to make them work for you. Good luck.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by COMAtose HI View Post
(snip) i just installed the n-fab steps. (snip)
I've taken a good, hard, look at the N-Fab steps (which probably would do the job, even though I'm not especially fond of the look), but those things are not cheap. On top of that, I'll have to sell the existing steps on my truck at a loss. The combined amount is simply more than I want to spend.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Metalhead77 View Post
Westin 23-2770 E-Series Polished Stainless Steel Side Steps
That's what I thought, but wanted to be sure. Assuming I don't get a better suggestion, these are my likely choice.
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hardscrabble View Post
The support brackets have elonged slots, (snip)
Which support brackets have elonged slots to allow adjustment - the OEM steps on my truck, the Westin steps mentioned just before your message, or both?
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Old 01-16-2012, 08:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stewartx View Post
That's what I thought, but wanted to be sure. Assuming I don't get a better suggestion, these are my likely choice.
I have these same steps in black. They are very nice and seem to be more functional than the OEM ones as they stick down a bit further.
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Old 01-16-2012, 09:24 AM   #14
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the ones in my sig are oem but they dont make it in that color anymore, only black. got them for my gf and son so they can get in and out easily
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Old 02-02-2012, 08:38 PM   #18
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After even further research, ultimately decided on the Smittybilt / N-Fab T0678CC black side (nerf) steps. The N-Fab steps were the only option unquestionably lower than the OEM steps.

Carefully measured the OEM steps before removal and the new steps after installation. The N-Fab steps sit approximately 14-inches above the ground, roughly 4 1/4 inches lower than the OEM side steps. The main bar of the N-Fab steps also doesn't extend out nearly as far (easier to step over), with the actual foot steps protruding out approximately 2-inches less than the OEM steps (more or less parallel with the mud flaps).

Thanks to all for your kind assistance.
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Old 09-12-2012, 12:11 PM   #19
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possible mod on oem steps?

I'm new to this forum and new to the '06 Tacoma DC Prerunner i just bought. But am not new to Toyota as I've had about 6 other Toyota trucks and 4Runner in the past. Anyway, I hate to start a new thread when there is one similar already.

As with most Tacoma I've seen, I too have the OEM sidesteps, which looks nice, but it's not very functional as it's way too close to the body. Also when getting out, if I don't use the step, the leg of my pants gets dirty fast as it always rub against it (too lazy to wash truck), unless I purposely try to step out more.

Eventually, I'll be lifting it...probably both suspension and/or body lift. If I do body lift, ideally, the side steps could hide part of the frame if it's a bit lower. But either way, I was thinking of lowering it by maybe 2". In looking under my truck in seeing how the mounting are, I was thinking of using longer 2" longer bolts, and use a spacer in between to essentially lowering the steps.

For spacer, I was thinking the boxed, or square tubing that Home Depot sells. I would just need to cut it to size, and drill 2 holes each for mounting.

My concern is whether the extra 2" would be too much leverage on the mounting point when it's being used to step on? Didn't know if anyone had try this, or have other ideas on how to better utilze the stock OEM steps instead of just buying aftermarket ones.
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Old 09-12-2012, 03:24 PM   #20
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You have six (6) fairly large bolts holding each of those steps on, shen. I don't think you have to worry about exceeding the weight capacity of that - unless you're one big dude. Besides, there are steps available with longer brackets which allow those steps to hang lower (as you're seeking) without problems.

However, what you describe (spacers to lower the brackets) is not so easy. If you look closely, you'll notice the three brackets on each step are not identical - the front bracket on each step is mounted at a different angle than the back two brackets. A simple extension like you describe (between the brackets & truck) would indeed push the brackets down, but would also push the front bracket alone further out from the truck. This bending or twisting action would quite likely weaken the steps.

At one time, I considered cutting the brackets in half and then welding in an extension between the two halves of each bracket. Careful welding would allow the different angles to be maintained. Sadly, I don't have the welding skills to reliably do that and a welding shop wanted to charge as much as new steps. I ended up buying the new steps.
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