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Is a "lift" the right direction?

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by SeniorSpan, Jan 30, 2011.

  1. Jan 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM
    #1
    SeniorSpan

    SeniorSpan [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Bob
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    Been reading through as many "lift" threads as I can find, trying to get educated, but despite all the info I still believe I need some help/opinions/suggestions to see my way to the correct lift option if needed at all.

    I have a 2011 TRD DC V6; traded a 2004 TRD DC V6. The 11 seems to have a more natural front "rake" than the 04 and my initial thought was I just needed a way to level it out, maybe 5100s at 1.75. No rear spring TSB to date. But I've since found the 11 front under carriage scraps on off road trails where the 04 seemed to clear easily. That situation strongly suggested not only a need for leveling, but clearly adds to the need of a little extra "clearance space"up front.

    So, the question becomes, is a "lift" the right direction? If so, what method of lift, new coils, or spacers, or 5100s, or a combo of, is the least intrusive way to the over all suspension and CV Joints to get to clearance/level I need?

    Yup, I off road a lot but it's mostly mild to medium stuff normally; unpaved Forest Service Roads, unpaved mountain roads and 4wd trails mostly, but on occasion there's the "ya just gotta do it trail".

    Suggestions appreciated.

    Cheers

    Bob
     
  2. Jan 30, 2011 at 5:32 PM
    #2
    DrRabbitFurHead

    DrRabbitFurHead Yeah, there's a TSB for that!

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    By lifting, what exactly are you trying to gain by saying "clearance"? The axels and differentials won't get elevated unless you go with bigger tires. You can raise/level the front of the truck to make it more "aesthetically pleasing", but you aren't really buying yourself any significant amount of clearance for going off road unless you get bigger tires.

    Does that make sense?
     
  3. Jan 30, 2011 at 7:00 PM
    #3
    SeniorSpan

    SeniorSpan [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Perfectly, thanks.
     
  4. Jan 30, 2011 at 7:10 PM
    #4
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    If you do a suspension lift, because the front is an independent front suspension system, you will gain some clearance... The center differential will be higher off the ground than stock depending on the lift type, obviously if you do a differential drop, this is no longer the case. The clearance of the rear diff can only be increased by larger tires.
     
  5. Jan 30, 2011 at 7:13 PM
    #5
    amadougrand

    amadougrand Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Dr Rabbit and a lift without more rubber is pointless if your are looking for clearance and ability.

    I installed a 2.5 and 3" lift spacer kit and combined with the new rubber and wheels it was still the better part of $3000, so that is definately a consideration. I would like to have the full on coil over and new uca's etc, but price wise it gets up there quick and I am happy with what I have.

    My biggest mistake was letting my friend talk me into 18" wheels. Don't make this mistake. Their are much fewer options for rubber and the price is considerably more (nothing under $300/ea) for the MT I am looking for.

    From a visual side, the maximum amount of rubber squeezed in the holes with the lift looks good and I get lots of compliments (mostly from the younger crowd).

    send a photo when you are done.
     
  6. Jan 30, 2011 at 8:12 PM
    #6
    aficianado

    aficianado Well-Known Member

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    back to bone stock.
    i mildly disagree.

    i lifted my truck a very mild 2". why? because i got into some nasty rocky trails chasing Arizona deer..bowhunting. we used my truck to get up a long hill to find cell service at the top. (to call our wives). going up that hill, my stock truck would rub the tires hard on the inner fenders. i just added a tiny bit to clear rubber and steel.

    it is working like a charm.
     
  7. Jan 30, 2011 at 9:10 PM
    #7
    TXBulldawg

    TXBulldawg Well-Known Member

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    Just a note about what some folks are saying about not changing tire sizes - even if you lift without changing tire size, you're still raising the chassis. This will yield better approach & departure angle as well as improved breakover angle. So although the axles may not see any benefit, there will still be some benefit. Off-roading isn't always about clearing a rock/stump/dead armadillo in the middle of the road.
     
  8. Jan 31, 2011 at 12:24 AM
    #8
    island808

    island808 Me l've got brains.

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    A lift has its place.. but its the "poor man's" way of getting around modifying fenders and such.

    You are trying to make clearance for tires because your clearance is only effected by tire radius as others said. But keeping your center of gravity and top clearance low are also great advantages. If you can, you want all your lift to come from rubber. Cut back fenders, take out liners.. That's the way I go. Never installed a lift. THough I've bought some trucks with body or suspension lifts. Terrible ride and other than clearing better tires, terrible off road. It takes a good amount of money and modification to fit larger tires and keep stock or better suspension characteristics.
     
  9. Jan 31, 2011 at 8:50 AM
    #9
    SeniorSpan

    SeniorSpan [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Great info, thanks much.

    I completely understand DrRabbit's comments and see the point he's making, hence my agreement. I also easily see that you can lift the truck almost as high as you want, with in reason, but the lift distance by it self does not generate any change in the distance from the ground to the diff case, axels, and A-Fram assys. So, it's easy to agree with Island808; it's primarily the new, larger size rubber that actually gets ya the "space".
    As it's only a month old, I'm not ready to change out tires yet but will investigate if the next size up will fit. The trails/terrain I travel, even at slow speeds will, on ocassion, bottom out the front end so tire scrape would be a concern.

    As I mentioned I was/am just looking to get, for lack of better words, the front end of the truck "up" a little which would in-turn level the truck. If that resulted in clearing the same obstacles as did the 04, then great.

    I have budbuilt protection to protect the under carriage all the way back to the fuel tank so I'm not worried about the minor scraping, I just though I should be able to clear the same obstacles with the 11 as I did with the 04, given the same speeds and driving conditions, if that's possible.

    Having said all that, the primary consideration in my post was for the integrity of the suspension geometry. Gaining a few inches at the expensive of other components is not my quest. If my best option is, leave it alone, then so be it, I can live with that.

    I appreciate the detailed responses, thanks.

    Cheers

    Bob
     
  10. Jan 31, 2011 at 2:23 PM
    #10
    bjmoose

    bjmoose Bullwinkle J. Moose

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    Get out and use your truck on the roads and trails you plan to use it on.

    You'll quickly see whether or not you need to change anything.

    If you're "high centering" on the middle of the chasis, though, you're probably going to need a suspension lift in addition to larger tires.
     
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