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Cross Country Trip With 6x12 Trailer.

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by PMR85, Feb 22, 2023.

  1. Feb 22, 2023 at 1:01 PM
    #1
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    So I figured I'd document as much as I can from this cross country trip I'm doing from Miami, Florida to Tucson, Arizona.

    Truck: 2003 Tacoma PreRunner 3.4 RWD.

    Mods:

    Complete OME Heavy Duty Suspension.

    Hitch and hitch lights installed.

    Max Tow Rating 5000 lbs.

    Green HD Clutch fan installed.

    External cooler installed "Hayden 678".

    Replaced old Radiator with new Denso radiator.
    Coolant flush

    Timing belt, water pump changed. (Along with everything else you can do while replacing timing belt.)

    Safari SS135R installed.

    Air filter changed.

    Airaid AIR-510-934.

    New spark plugs
    New spark plug coils

    Oil changed
    Oil filter changed
    Fuel filter changed
    Transmission fluid changed
    Rear differential oil changed


    Cargo approximate weight (this includes trailer, food, water, myself, and other miscellaneous stuff.

    Approximately 3,500 lbs worth of stuff. 1500 lbs below maximum tow weight. (Probably less than that. This includes the trailer empty.)


    Trailer used: Uhaul 6x12

    So I pretty much followed the Tacoma Towing Bible. About 90% of the things that post mentioned I did.

    Here's a view of my truck from drive and passenger side.

    I will be departing after sunset so I can avoid the insane south Florida traffic and the hottest part of the day.

    I am open to questions and advice.

    20230222_153120.jpg
    20230222_153049.jpg
     
    Littles likes this.
  2. Feb 22, 2023 at 2:41 PM
    #2
    wjcunningham3

    wjcunningham3 Well-Known Member

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    Mostly stock - but I do have a suction cup phone holder - its pretty sweet
    Best of luck to you! That is a heck of a drive - hopefully you have a driving partner.

    I am certainly no master/professional with towing but I would:
    - Pull off after a couple of miles to ensure your trailer connections are tight and nothing is loose
    - Make sure you have the weight loaded properly (and secured so it doesn't shift) inside the trailer and the trailer isn't lifting the tongue
    - Grab some basic tools so you can do basic work on the truck in case something does happen
    - Download your Google Map just in case
    - Check you tire pressures - and generally the condition of that U-haul. They are convenient but they get beat up! ​

    I am doing a big road trip this summer and most of what you have completed is on my checklist. Couple of things that it might be a little late for might be:
    - Grease your zerks
    - Check your brakes (rotors, pads and fluid) because of the additional weight
    - Check your wipers and washer fluid
    - Check your spare​
     
    PMR85[OP] likes this.
  3. Feb 22, 2023 at 3:16 PM
    #3
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I will be doing those things. I have a notebook ready for each stop to ensure I do those things.

    As for brake pads and rotors. They were replaced less than a year ago along with the fluid.

    I already greased the zerks.

    Tires have been filled to Toyota recommendations.

    Trailer tires filled up to 65psi

    Wipers are good. But the washer nozzles are less than superb they work good but I may stop by to get a better set of atomizing washer nozzles.

    Oh yes most importantly I out a big note on the truck saying "TURN OVERDRIVE OFF"

    I've loaded weight accordingly and split into three sections with rope to reduce the risk of the cargo moving. But I will ensure I check it every stop.

    Thankfully 90% of my drive will be on flat roads. Except for some parts in Texas.

    Also weather will be on average 50-60 so that will be good.
     
    wjcunningham3 and ToyoTaco25 like this.
  4. Feb 22, 2023 at 3:25 PM
    #4
    GoodDogRUGER

    GoodDogRUGER 2021 SR ACCESS V6 4x4

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    6112/5160, 285/75/17 BFG KO2 , SPC, Method 703s, BMC/CMC, ARE DCU,
    I did this from Ohio to SOCAL. I had 2002 3rd Gen T4R with auto and 3.4. 6x12 enclosed at about 3500#. 2000 miles. I did pretty much all the exact same additions and maintenance items you suggested. Lots of the trip I was having to refuel at 100 miles. There were hours spent at near redline. I swore after I made the trip that my T4R was the best vehicle ever made. I figured it was going to be totally worn out when I got here. It never missed a beat though. I drove it another 80K miles and sold it for almost twice what I paid for it. I wish I would have been able to keep it but it costs too much out here to have extra vehicles. The selling of it paid for all my Tacoma mods. Best luck to you, it certainly can be done!
     
    PMR85[OP] likes this.
  5. Feb 22, 2023 at 3:28 PM
    #5
    0xDEADBEEF

    0xDEADBEEF Trash Aficionado

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    Best advice I have is to go slow. 65 tops and don’t flog it up hills, your mpg will be better and you won’t have to stop for gas as much.
     
    Xbeaus likes this.
  6. Feb 22, 2023 at 3:31 PM
    #6
    GoodDogRUGER

    GoodDogRUGER 2021 SR ACCESS V6 4x4

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    6112/5160, 285/75/17 BFG KO2 , SPC, Method 703s, BMC/CMC, ARE DCU,
    This was my plan too, it didnt work. My T4R was FLOGGED for hours upon hours. See above... Redline for days. Awesome that these vehicles can do this and keep on going.
     
  7. Feb 22, 2023 at 4:09 PM
    #7
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    That's good to hear. How long ago did you do this? I'm guessing your trip went through more hills and mountains?
     
  8. Feb 22, 2023 at 4:24 PM
    #8
    GoodDogRUGER

    GoodDogRUGER 2021 SR ACCESS V6 4x4

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    6112/5160, 285/75/17 BFG KO2 , SPC, Method 703s, BMC/CMC, ARE DCU,
    Ohio-indiana-illinois- missour-ioklahoma-texas-new mexico- arizona - ca
    Missouri was more hilly than I expected. It got rough in new mexico. Took us 6 days! Two days were about 25miles and 60 miles though. We had ice storms. I had to bail when the trailer would try to pass me on icy roads... I have made the trip a few times now and 3 days is good. Only one with the trailer and the load though. For real, take you time. You kinda have to though when you cant use OD. Dont be afraid to use the engine when it is necessary. Mine will likely be forever my favorite engine ever!
     
    PMR85[OP] likes this.
  9. Feb 22, 2023 at 5:29 PM
    #9
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Yes I will definitely take my time. I'm not going to risk an accident because I was rushing. I'm checking the weather and so far it seems cool but not ice road cool weather. Just in the 50s and 70s. I also have 10 gallons of fuel for emergencies. I'm going to calculate how far I can go on one full tank of gas.
     
  10. Feb 23, 2023 at 8:44 AM
    #10
    wjcunningham3

    wjcunningham3 Well-Known Member

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    Mostly stock - but I do have a suction cup phone holder - its pretty sweet
    How was the first few legs of the trip?
     
  11. Feb 23, 2023 at 8:52 AM
    #11
    Andy01DblCabTacoma

    Andy01DblCabTacoma Well-Known Member

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    F: Kings SPC, R: 5100s+J59s. Custom armor.
    The only other thing I would have added (maybe you did, and I missed it) is a scan gauge, so you can actually get the coolant and ATF temps.

    Good luck on your journey!
     
    PMR85[OP] and Xbeaus like this.
  12. Feb 23, 2023 at 12:10 PM
    #12
    Xbeaus

    Xbeaus Well-Known Member

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    Black hills South dakota
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    Toytec coilovers. Height adjustable Bilstein's. 265/75/16 MT. TRD wheels. Rebuilt r150f. Marlin clutch kit. All kinds of new parts...
    It will be interesting to read about this when you are done. Good luck! Those trailers with double axles like that really pull nice and don't put a huge amount of tongue weight on the pickup. I bet you'll be getting 13-14mpg. Maybe a little better if there are not a lot of hills but it should do just fine.
     
  13. Feb 24, 2023 at 7:25 AM
    #13
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Update:

    My truck is doing very well running dependently MPG is ok.

    I had to switch trailers from a 6x12 to a 5x8.

    The 6x12 trailer's braking system was faulty and I was burning up my own brakes. The only thing where I was that they had in stock was a 5x8.

    MPG with 5x8 improved significantly as well as drivability.

    Coasting with OD off at 55-60 mph.

    Screenshot_20230224_091752_Torque.jpg
     
    Xbeaus likes this.
  14. Feb 25, 2023 at 1:26 PM
    #14
    PMR85

    PMR85 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    It was good no issues with the Tacoma. Although the 6x12 had no working hydraulic brakes. So my truck was doing 100% of the braking.

    Had to call roadside service and the mechanic confirmed that the trailer was not working properly and it was a danger to pull it.

    So I had to switch to a 5x8 trailer mpg and drivability significantly increased.

    I'm halfway to my destination.
     
    0xDEADBEEF likes this.
  15. Feb 25, 2023 at 1:57 PM
    #15
    Nessal

    Nessal Well-Known Member

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    New Mexico has a bunch of hills as well as Arizona. We drove a few times on route 66 from CA to TX and was surprised how much elevation we had to climb in NM.
     

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