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Baja Suspension - UCA Replacement?

Discussion in 'Suspension' started by gretch6364, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. Jul 29, 2013 at 8:50 AM
    #1
    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    Hello everyone. I have a quick question on modifications to my Baja suspension. I don't need any more ride height, but was curious about how much additional travel I would be able to get upfront if I replaced the UCA's.

    This is the info about the suspension provided in this article:

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/car...-tacoma-trd-tx-baja-series-test-drive-7455307


    The Baja Series receives a 1.75-inch lift upfront thanks to TRD springs wrapped around Bilstein shocks. The shocks are based on Bilstein's high-end 9100 Series dampers and use a 60-mm piston (compared with 32 mm for the stock Tacoma 4x4). The new front suspension increases wheel travel from 8 inches to 9.25 inches. It turns out the limiting factor for more suspension movement is the upper ball joint, and finding a better one would have cost too much time and money, according to the team. "We built this system so it could grow with the customer," Zwillinger says. So an owner could, for example, buy a pair of aftermarket upper A-arms that allow even more front-wheel travel, and then have the Bilsteins modified to match. The front bump stops are slightly shorter to allow for the increase in jounce (compression) travel.

    In the rear, the TRD team selected the three-leaf (plus one overload leaf) spring pack used in Tacoma towing packages, which provides a 10-mm increase in rear ride height. The damping comes form Bilstein 5160 remote reservoir shocks that have been custom-valved. The team did much of the suspension testing and tuning at the Ocotillo Wells State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA) in California and had Bilstein's shock-tuning truck on hand to make on-demand adjustments to the valving. "We did at least three or four rebuilds on the rear shocks before we got it correct," says Zwillinger, "but basically we dialed-in the lightest tuning possible that would meet our durability requirements". The rear suspension package increases wheel travel from 8.5 inches to 10 inches—mostly in rebound (droop) travel. And to allow for the increase, the rear brake lines have been lengthened slightly with a bracket.



    How much more travel would I see, and what would need to be done to the 9100s? Would this void my warranty?

    Lastly, would I need to modify the bump stops? Would there be any benefit in installing something like this Jounce Shock system?

    http://toyteclifts.3dcartstores.com/Light-Racing-Jounce-Shocks-for-05-UP-Tacoma-_p_192.html


    Thank you for the help.

    Edit:

    This article also mentions the ability of the Bilsteins to support more travel with new UCA's:

    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/09/review-2012-toyota-tacoma-trd-tx-baja-edition/

    The enormous 60mm Bilstein shocks (originally designed for motor home use) will support more travel should a buyer decide to swap out the A-arm for an aftermarket unit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  2. Jul 29, 2013 at 9:57 AM
    #2
    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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  3. Jul 29, 2013 at 10:50 AM
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    Mr. Biscuits

    Mr. Biscuits Salesman by trade, Gentleman by habit

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    Am I seeing this right? You have no body to your thread.

    What the hell do you need help with?
     
  4. Jul 29, 2013 at 10:55 AM
    #4
    straycat241

    straycat241 maXXXed out mid travel

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    he had few question earlier, but I didn't know much about it so didn't chime in. Will baja gain more travel with aftermarket arms?, and can the baja 60mm. shocks be matched to the new arms for increased travel? or somthing like that he was refering to a popular mechanics arcticle about the baja.
    here's link http://www.popularmechanics.com/car...-tacoma-trd-tx-baja-series-test-drive-7455307

    . So an owner could, for example, buy a pair of aftermarket upper A-arms that allow even more front-wheel travel, and then have the Bilsteins modified to match. The front bump stops are slightly shorter to allow for the increase in jounce (compression) travel.



     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  5. Jul 29, 2013 at 10:55 AM
    #5
    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    I don't know where it all went. I thought maybe the mods were reviewing it?

    In these two articles:

    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/09/review-2012-toyota-tacoma-trd-tx-baja-edition/

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/car...-tacoma-trd-tx-baja-series-test-drive-7455307

    they mention that the Bilstein coilovers used in the front of the Baja suspension package have the ability to be modified to allow for longer travel with after market UCA's.

    My questions are:

    Is this accurate?

    What would the "modification" entail?

    How much more travel could you get?

    Would you need new bump stops or a jounce kit like the one sold by Toytec.

    Thank you
     
  6. Jul 29, 2013 at 11:12 AM
    #6
    Mr. Biscuits

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    You want new UCA's for more travel? Yes you can install them no problem. The Baja suspension isn't crazy different than stock. In fact it's pretty much the same
     
  7. Jul 29, 2013 at 11:14 AM
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    MGMTacolover55

    MGMTacolover55 Well-Known Member

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    Actually the shocks are the magic behind it
     
  8. Jul 29, 2013 at 11:14 AM
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    straycat241

    straycat241 maXXXed out mid travel

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    lol wonder where OP went to :tumbleweed:
     
  9. Jul 29, 2013 at 11:24 AM
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    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. Staff Member

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    Aftermarket UCA's generally give one inch to the down travel. The Baja taco has balljojnts that allow more droop, so I don't think a gain could be had by swapping.
     
  10. Jul 29, 2013 at 11:41 AM
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    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    I am here...I went to lunch. The suspension is in fact different than stock. I guess I could try contacting Bilstein to see what modifications would be required?

    You can never tell how accurate these review type articles are, maybe one just copied the info from the other?
     
  11. Jul 30, 2013 at 9:38 AM
    #11
    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    I contacted TRD and they are working on an answer for me. I will post what I find out for everyone else's benefit. I may talk to Bilstein as well after I get an answer to see what cost would be like.


    I am also wondering about replacing the the leaf spring pack in the rear. The article says they just used the set from the towing package, and I am wondering if there would be a ride/off-road handling benefit from someting like Deavers. Again, I don't want to have to replace the rear shocks, and if possible would like 1 to 1.5" of lift in the rear to help with clearing the bumper. This would be max. The front is up 1.75," so another inch in the rear would be nice, but don't want to mess with the shock tuning too much.
     
  12. Jul 30, 2013 at 12:25 PM
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    Mr. Biscuits

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    Alright well I'm gonna say what most are thinking: if you're thinking that the Baja suspension is going to be worlds different over stock, you're dreaming. The differences over stock are minimal. So if you think the Baja suspension is so much different that you can't replace certain components, you're wrong.

    As I have answered and Chris has already covered, yes you can replace the UCA's but you will most likely not gain any travel as the stock Baja ball joints allow for more travel.
     
  13. Jul 30, 2013 at 4:58 PM
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    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    I guess I will just wait to see what I hear from someone that actually knows something about the Baja suspension.
     
  14. Jul 30, 2013 at 5:06 PM
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    That Dude Tim

    That Dude Tim Toyota Technician

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    As far as I know the rear Bilstein 5160 shocks for the Baja Taco are only good for stock height leaf packs. If you want more lift in the rear your probably going to have to replace the shocks too.
     
  15. Jul 31, 2013 at 6:10 AM
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    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    Thank you Tim. I found the description of the extra 1.5" of rear rebound travel interesting and thought that it might allow for an extra 1 to 1.5" in ride height that would come from the Deaver 10 pack. Wouldn't you end up turning that into additional bump/compression with the higher leafs and no additional overall travel?

    Or does it not work that way?
     
  16. Jul 31, 2013 at 8:27 AM
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    That Dude Tim

    That Dude Tim Toyota Technician

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    Unsure, but I do now that when I got the TSB 3 leaf pack plus 1 overload spring (4 total) that the rear of my truck when up about a inch. I believe the Baja Tacomas have this pack installed already. So I'd guess the extra rebound is being used on the current leaf pack.
     
  17. Jul 31, 2013 at 8:55 AM
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    gretch6364

    gretch6364 [OP] Active Member

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    Thanks Tim. My best bet might be just to leave it all alone and get high clearance bumpers. I was planning on the rear anyhow, with skids and sliders.
     
  18. Aug 2, 2013 at 9:04 PM
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    ReddingtonTRD

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    This is my 6th Toyota pickup and I have to say, after having several off-roads, this setup by far (out of the box), handles much better that my OR by maintaining the geometry of the ride. The notorious bouncing around on washboards is eliminated, thus keeping the truck on the trail, momentum maintained, and moving forward. The articulation is fantastic and it provides enough lift to get the job done. Throw in better tires, nice (although faux beadlock) wheels, cat-back exhaust, extended brake lines, and of course the coil overs and massive shocks, it's a terrific package, not to mentioned fully-warrantied. I paid about $1500 more on my 13 baja than my 12 OR. Congrats on the truck OP!
     
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