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loose, chattery rear end

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Old 10-09-2012, 06:33 AM   #1
blastoff [OP] blastoff is offline
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loose, chattery rear end

I just got the truck on Saturday, its my first truck. 125k miles. A couple issues im having with the rear end... its really loose in a turn with a bump.

This morning, driving the speed limit going with traffic ~50mph around a turn, a small bump in the road sends the rear end out what feels like a foot. It feels like the whole thing, including tires shifted up and to the outside of the turn. Its a dangerous feeling. Also, the rear end bounces (whole thing, not a loose exhaust or anything) even on small bumps in the road. I get a bout 2-4 "bounces" in the rear on a small bump. I'm running 32 psi in Hancook ATM. Doesnt feel like a tire issue, and shaking the bed side to side doesnt seem to show any issues.

Is this shocks? Or can anyone point me to a bushing to inspect?
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:38 AM   #2
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That's the weak Toyota leaf pack. My 98 taco did it. My 05 Tundra did it. I install a 3 leaf progressive pack in the rear and the Tundra doesn't do it any more. It also sounds like your shocks may be on their way out.
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Old 10-09-2012, 06:39 AM   #3
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Sounds like a shock issue. If you step on the rear bumper and jump off, does the truck keep bouncing or just it just rebound and settle back to it's original height?

The next thing I'd check would be the leaf springs. If the leaf pack is worn out and sagging, that would mean you're riding on the overload leaf (the really thick bottom leaf). That thick leaf doesn't have much give and can create that bouncy feeling.

Even with good shocks, the bouncing on corners will still occur to an extent. That's the result of a solid rear axle but decent shocks will certainly help keep the truck under control.
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Old 10-09-2012, 07:16 AM   #4
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bouncing the rear bumper and letting goes produces 3-4 oscillations before it settles. The leafs look a little spent too. I can shake the bed side to side with one arm and watch the sidewall of the tire move a bit. Also, im not sure if its the learning curve, but its really easy to spin the rear tires from a stop. Ive spun them a couple times unintentionally so far.

Are shocks and leafs something I can do in an evening with basic tools? Maybe some penetrating oil the morning of? Any suggestions on a brand/model? No lift. 90% of my driving is on road. I would take road comfort over offroad performance.
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Old 10-09-2012, 07:22 AM   #5
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Shocks are easy, leafs springs require a little more work and it would depend on what you want to do with them.

If you still have the factory shocks, since you live in NJ, you will likely have to cut the old ones off unless you're really lucky. You have to put a small wrench on the very top of the upper shock stud, then a larger wrench on the nut and loosen. Where you start having issues is when the nut now has to go over the top of the stud (where you need to have the small wrench to keep the shaft from just spinning with the nut). You might have luck gripping the shaft with vice grips, if not, just hack staw off the stup below the nut and remove the shock. That's what I resorted to.

As for shock selection, for stock height there are a ton of options. You could go with basic shocks you can pick up at a local auto parts store to a more expensive Bilstein shock. The Bilstein HD's are similar to what came on the TRD Sport and TRD Off Road models and are a very decent shock for a stock height Tacoma.
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Old 10-11-2012, 03:40 PM   #6
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got this fixed up today, no more shuttering and ominous feeling when hitting a little bump...

the left rear shock was completely blown. video here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eeiiiTNAJZU I was riding on the leaf I guess.

I replaced both shocks. Getting the rim off the hub took the longest... damn thing was rusted on. I still need to put new leafs on but at least I can drive the truck now. I actually have some traction now too!

The truck still hooks to the right when braking though. Tomorrow i'll pull the fronts and inspect.
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Old 10-11-2012, 03:55 PM   #7
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Glob on either grease or never-sieze on the back of the wheels between it and the hub. It stops the corrosion that occurs between dissimilar materials, essentially welding your wheels to your hubs.
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