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AALs vs leaf packs for my 2008 DC (and first post)

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Old 02-13-2013, 08:30 AM   #1
mike h [OP] mike h is offline
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AALs vs leaf packs for my 2008 DC (and first post)

First post here so be gentle. I've searched and read a million posts and am looking at a minimal 2-inch lift for my bone stock Taco. The choice between adding a leaf vs a complete leaf set, such as the Dakar (Emu) or Ironman has me mildly confused.

I want a minimal lift for use with stock tire size. I'll add sliders, skid plates and bumpers at some point, but I want to avoid the vibe issues and I'm not looking to up the tire size. A mild lift with better suspension and some armor will get me on the trails I need to use.

I sold my well built 1996 80-series Land Cruiser a few months ago, and bought an '08 Taco DC SB, bone stock, 8,000 miles, with a TRD package including rear locker, supercharger and TRD exhaust. I've had it for 5 months (19,000 miles now) and I think it will be a good platform for a new build. Its taken some getting used to coming from an 80 Series Cruiser, but that's another topic. The 80 had 4 coils, and I built that with an Emu suspension to run 285s. I haven't had a leaf spring suspension since my '87 4Runner.

I'm not impressed with the TRD suspension. I've used Emu on my last few rigs, but the Ironman is in the running because it's a little less height than the Emu. This may or may not make much difference, the Emu 885s/Dakar leaves would be my other option. I'd not opposed to buying UCAs at the same time but it seems with those two options, and stock tire size, I don't have to.

This forum has been very helpful, I've spent the last 7 years on IH8MUD under the name mainemike in the 80 series forum. I'm in Central PA now, and immersing myself in TacoWorld as I start this new project.

So, back to my original question: Why would one consider adding leaves instead of buying a whole new leaf pack?

Thanks for the knowledge!
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:32 AM   #2
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AAL can give you 1.5, 2 or 2.5 inch of lift in the rear, leaf packs (Dakar, All Pro) give 3" maybe more.. I got 3-1/2" from my dakars and they haven't settled much.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:50 AM   #4
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[QUOTE=OZ-T;6433554]Here's another option

http://www.wheelersoffroad.com/05upt...htm[/QUOTE]

How would this set from Wheelers compare with the TSB leaf replacement springs from Toyota?
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:53 AM   #5
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So it's a fine tuning ability, to retain the TRD leaves and tweak it by adding individual leaves. I'm inclined to buy a new leaf pack matched to the front suspension instead of experimenting. Thanks for clarifying.
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:46 AM   #6
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FWIW, I just had a local spring/suspension shop remove my original '06 3-leaf spring packs and add an additional full-length leaf spring, making them 4-leaf packs now. This change raised the rear about 1.5-2.0 inches, which makes the rear just slightly higher than the front now (front already had a "leveling kit" installed). However, over time the rear will likely settle 1/4"-1/2" or so.

The best news is that the truck handles MUCH better with this added leaf, plus it corners flatter too. No more wandering around in the lane and the ride is actually improved over the saggy original packs. Firm but not rough or bouncy.

Total price was $417.00 out-the-door. I couldn't be happier!

BTW- that particular shop has done this same fix to dozens of Tacomas.
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:56 AM   #7
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Another option for you could be from a company called Alcan, for around $600 they can build you a custom set of leafs to give you the lift to your specs, taking into account what size truck, which bed and what weights you normally run. Not cheap, but you can have it exactly the way you want it.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:03 AM   #9
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[QUOTE=glwood6;6433660]
Quote:
Originally Posted by OZ-T View Post
Here's another option

http://www.wheelersoffroad.com/05upt...htm[/QUOTE]

How would this set from Wheelers compare with the TSB leaf replacement springs from Toyota?
I would say the Wheelers would be better than the Toyota TSB springs , they are crap
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