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Removing a Spacer Lift

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Old 05-23-2013, 07:42 PM   #1
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Removing a Spacer Lift

I just bought a good used 2011 TRD Off Road. Low miles, 21,000 and super clean. When I was checking it out, I totally missed that it had a spacer lift installed. Shame on me for missing that, but its got to come out. I've got a shop full of tools and it looks pretty straight forward to remove. Is there anything I need to pay attention to or be aware of.

Can anyone tell me from this picture what the make is? Maybe its worth some $$ to someone else?
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Removing a Spacer Lift-toyspring.jpg  
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:45 PM   #2
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Looks like it is a top plate spacer and a pre-load spacer, both rubber, and that is going to be a pain to take off. You will need to compress the coil and remove the top plate and then reassemble the coil and strut without the spacer. You are also going to need an alignment as soon as you put the truck back on the ground, so wait to take it off until you have time to get it aligned. Or wait to take it off until you are ready to do a proper lift, and get it aligned once instead of twice in a short period of time.

Probably worth $30 to $40 on the BST forum, likely less.


How jacked up is the front of your truck? Anymore pictures?
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Old 05-23-2013, 09:25 PM   #3
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Looks like Daystar spacer lift.
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Old 05-23-2013, 10:08 PM   #4
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Here's a side view. I've got a coil spring compressor and air tools.The process is to pull the springs, compress them enough to release the tension, pull the spacers, put them back on the truck, do an alignment and everything is back to stock, right? It also has a lift blocks in the back that need to be pulled.

As for putting a lift on, well that is totally out of the plans. I sold a totally killer Jeep to fund the Tacoma. There wasn't a trail in Moab it hadn't been on. But when I saw a stock Tacoma go up Potato Salad hill like it was nothing, I said to myself "I gotta get me one of those." If a stock Tacoma can't go there, I don't want to go. Besides, I learned with my jeep that lift kits are a slippery slope, bigger lift, bigger tires, different wheels, lower gears,etc, etc, etc. I'm looking forward to driving a vehicle that just runs without me continually chasing bugs out of the system.
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Old 05-27-2013, 04:56 PM   #5
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Why are you taking the lift off?
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsi View Post
The process is to pull the springs, compress them enough to release the tension, pull the spacers, put them back on the truck, do an alignment and everything is back to stock, right?
To answer my own question the answer is no, its more involved than that. Since I didn't put the lift on, I don't have the parts that were taken off. That means I had to acquire 9 pieces of unobtainium, 2 rubber spring isolators, 4 U bolts and 6 shorter bolts for the upper strut mount. Really, how hard could it be?

So, I threw the truck up jack stands and started pulling it apart. I figured the dealer will have everything and it will take just a few minutes to grab. What I thought and reality are two very different things. The dealer would have to special order everything. The rubber isolators are $24/side and the ubolts are $97/side and the shorter replacement bolts for the upper strut mount are $89/side! That's $300

I could have saved a big hassle and ordered online had I planned ahead, but with my truck out of commission I didn't want to wait for shipping. I called everyplace in town and finally some told me about cruiseroutfitters.com. They are local to me and had some take-off parts from a 2013 with 150 miles on it. The guys there are great and I recommend them.

As for removing the spacers I followed this guys procedure Basically pretty simple, but it did take a helper to get it back together. I've included a shot of the unobtainium for your viewing pleasure.
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Removing a Spacer Lift-unobtainium.jpg  
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Old 05-31-2013, 09:19 PM   #7
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Did you get all the parts you needed? I might have some of the parts you mentioned if you still want the stuff. PM me if interested.
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Old 05-31-2013, 10:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blazer190 View Post
Why are you taking the lift off?
I pulled a the lift for a number of reasons. I'm new to Tacomas, but I've been lifting and fixing broken, lifted 4x4's for a long time. Look at the attached pictures.
  • First, maybe springs rubbing on control arms is normal for stock Tacomas, but I hope not.
  • Second, tires rubbing on control arms shouldn't be normal either. The truck is new to me, so maybe the previous owner had bigger tires on it at some point.
  • Third, the rear U bolts are too long. They can be cut off, but IMO long U bolts are just tacky.
  • Finally, I'm excited to drive a vehicle that just works, no buggy lift kits, no prematurely worn out parts, no lousy ride.
Speaking of lousy rides pulling the lift kit improved it a little bit. After the alignment was done, I ran a bunch of errands that required city and freeway driving. The ride was a little more compliant, not OMG this is awesome, just a little smoother.

Oh and I did some before and after measurements:
Front spacer and block 1 3/4" Rear lift block 1 1/2"

Ground to the top of the front wheel well
Before 37" After 35" Difference 2"

Ground to the door sill
Before 22 5/8 After 21" Difference 1 5/8"

Ground to the top of the back wheel well
Before 37 3/8" After 36" Difference 1 3/8"

The problems with the lift don't seem worth the little bit of lift it provided.
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Removing a Spacer Lift-rubbing-spring.jpg   Removing a Spacer Lift-rubbing-tire.jpg   Removing a Spacer Lift-photo1-3.jpg  
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