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Stock Height Front Suspension Upgrade

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by wolfgang123, Mar 25, 2018.

  1. Mar 25, 2018 at 11:42 AM
    #1
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Skyler
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    I have had a 1997 Tacoma for a long time now. I have had stock suspension, Bilstein 5100 with stock coils, 5100s with OME 881 and 882 and Eibach coils, and now King coil overs. I have ridden in Tacomas with full OME suspension and complete parts store strut replacement options. More specifically the Monroe's you can get from Rock Auto.

    So I have had my far share of experiences with 1st Tacoma front suspension options in my opinion.

    I recently bought a 2004 double cab V6 as my daily driver since my 97 build is starting to get out of hand. The suspension was completly blown out and I was searching for budget options to get the ride quality back without lifting.

    I settled on the new Bilstein 5100 Shocks (24-249928) with the 4 c-clip positions instead of the old-school 3 positions, and Moog 81082 coils (465lbs coils) The cool thing about these coils is they are side specific! one of the coils came labeled "driver side" and this coil was just a hair taller than the other. NO MORE TACO LEAN

    I also purchased new bushings and top hats.
    Top hat part number: Monroe 904900
    Shock shaft (?) bushings: Wheelers offroad (no real part number)

    I did have to rip out the bushings that came with the Monroe top hats to work with the wheelers bushings, this ended up fitting perfectly. You cant replace just the top hat and try to re-use factor shock shaft bushings, the spacing wont work. So if you plan on buying new top hats you must buy the wheelers bushings as well.

    Total cost: $339.20
    If you re-use factory top hat and bushings: $262.70

    In the pictures below you will see the MOOG coils are much shorter than the factory coil springs. I also had to take a grinder to the top of the coils to get a flat surface for the new top hats to sit level. I grinded away until it resembled the factory spring profile and when I set them down on a flat surface they stood straight up and down. I then re-painted the exposed metal and installed everything using the "on the truck method" without spring compressors. The whole process took about 1.5 hours and the ride quality.....AMAZING!!!! This is by far the best stock height budget suspension option out there period, minus King/Icon/etc coils overs of course. Like I have had experience with just about every option out there when it comes to suspension on a 1st gen Tacoma and this is absolutely amazing.

    I hope this thread will help someone out, I couldn't find any information on stock height coil replacement options for tacomas. After a bunch of research on the different Moog spring options I gambled with the 81082's and FRICKEN LOVE IT!

    When researching Moog spring options I considered the weight and the length (I purposely went shorter so the springs would be pre-loaded less), I gambled on whether or not they would "fit" over the shock body.

    And before some keyboard comando tries to say something about grinding down the coil springs...I really dont care, Shade tree coil modification has been apart of the automotive world for a very long time now and I can assure you the springs are in no way "compromised"

    spring 1.jpg

    spring 2.jpg
    spring 3.jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2018
    Pervy, outlawtacoma, borg1736 and 5 others like this.
  2. Mar 25, 2018 at 12:51 PM
    #2
    Kiloyard

    Kiloyard Road Warrior

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    Nice write-up. How can you tell if the coils need to be replaced? I have the original springs on mine and thinking it may be time to have them changed out with OME 880 and Nitrochargers.
     
  3. Mar 25, 2018 at 12:54 PM
    #3
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Just like everything else coils don't last forever, depends on how the truck is used..but in my opinion if your leaf springs need to be replaced..so do your coils.

    Like i said in my original post. I have used new shocks with stock coils and the ride was crap..when you hear people complain about the 5100 shocks its because they probably used factory coils with them.
     
  4. Mar 25, 2018 at 1:48 PM
    #4
    1997tacomav6

    1997tacomav6 V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger,2"pulley,meth, 625k

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    V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger, 2" pulley, methanol injected AC TRD supercharger,(MUST DO) TRD supercharger ported, rebuilt 3 times over 500,000 miles, every 125,000- 150,000 needs rebuild Projector headlights HID 5 speed manual Amsoil for all drive train Smaller 2” pulley,(300hp) (MUST DO) 2004 DESNO fuel injectors, zero ping ping, 2004 side door mirrors Dick Cepek Rims, Michelin tires LTX, ( that last 100,000 miles) Now running Dynopro ATM mud and snow tires KN cold air intake Cat back exhaust with ss exhaust tip, Raised exhaust tail pipe to 2" below body line Optima*dry cell battery,red top Alpine sirius radio, 200 watt amp, focal is165 split door pod speakers Focal door speakers Subwoffer behind seat Viper alarm, Electric Locks Dark tinted windows, 4runner bucket seats, Tacoma Rubber floor mats TRD fender extenders, Bilstien shocks chrome push bar, chrome nerf bars, add a leaf for rear springs trailer iv hitch, electric brake control, Drilled slotted brakes, High carbon steel (MUST DO) EBS green stuff 7000 series pads(MUST DO) TRD engine oil cap TRD stick shift, Rear sliding window 2002 4Runner functional hood scoop cut into Tacoma hood, 4Runner dual overhead map light Gentex Auto dim + Compass + Temp, garage,rearview mirror Corbeau bucket seats Snow Methonal kit stage 2 Champion 3 core aluminum radiator Linex bed liner
    Can one use the original top hats and wheeler bushings with out modifying the top hat with this setup
     
  5. Mar 25, 2018 at 3:46 PM
    #5
    taco03Trd

    taco03Trd 03 rig trd v6

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    Ome 881 5100's jba's looking for more
    Nice info wolf aim in the search now for my new rig i just got last weekend a 03 DCTRDV6 was looking at 5100’s with 881’s stock front bumper. I run 5100’s on trd springs now on my extcab so i want to so my DC the right way . Any suggestions on a set up ? Daily driver with some offroad but not crazy .

    Thanks,
     
  6. Mar 26, 2018 at 4:49 AM
    #6
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    yes

    5100s and 881 would probably give you a small lift depending on where you set the pre-load.
    If you want an offroad rig, or lift go with the 881s, if you want stock go with the Moog coils.
     
  7. Mar 26, 2018 at 6:12 AM
    #7
    1997tacomav6

    1997tacomav6 V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger,2"pulley,meth, 625k

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    97 reg cab, v6 5sp 300hp supercharged, Methonal Injection, 625,001 plus miles, Original Owner
    V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger, 2" pulley, methanol injected AC TRD supercharger,(MUST DO) TRD supercharger ported, rebuilt 3 times over 500,000 miles, every 125,000- 150,000 needs rebuild Projector headlights HID 5 speed manual Amsoil for all drive train Smaller 2” pulley,(300hp) (MUST DO) 2004 DESNO fuel injectors, zero ping ping, 2004 side door mirrors Dick Cepek Rims, Michelin tires LTX, ( that last 100,000 miles) Now running Dynopro ATM mud and snow tires KN cold air intake Cat back exhaust with ss exhaust tip, Raised exhaust tail pipe to 2" below body line Optima*dry cell battery,red top Alpine sirius radio, 200 watt amp, focal is165 split door pod speakers Focal door speakers Subwoffer behind seat Viper alarm, Electric Locks Dark tinted windows, 4runner bucket seats, Tacoma Rubber floor mats TRD fender extenders, Bilstien shocks chrome push bar, chrome nerf bars, add a leaf for rear springs trailer iv hitch, electric brake control, Drilled slotted brakes, High carbon steel (MUST DO) EBS green stuff 7000 series pads(MUST DO) TRD engine oil cap TRD stick shift, Rear sliding window 2002 4Runner functional hood scoop cut into Tacoma hood, 4Runner dual overhead map light Gentex Auto dim + Compass + Temp, garage,rearview mirror Corbeau bucket seats Snow Methonal kit stage 2 Champion 3 core aluminum radiator Linex bed liner
    I’ve been looking for a daily driver stock ride setup, up grade and installed the Monroe quick lift springs and coils.
    That setup I’m not happy with, front end bottoms out easily at speed when a large dip is encountered.
    If I get the factory top hats do I still have to grind down the coils to fit?
     
  8. Mar 26, 2018 at 6:16 AM
    #8
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    The coils need to be ground down no matter what. The factory coils and all aftermarket coils designed for the Tacoma have a flat profile from the manufacture because the top hats are flat, unlike the bottom of the spring where the metal "cup" supports the coils shape. see the picture below
    upload_2018-3-26_9-16-17.jpg

    Keep in mind i have a v6 double cab, if you have a single cab 4 cylinder you'll want to go with a lighter weight Moog coil.
     
  9. Mar 26, 2018 at 6:23 AM
    #9
    1997tacomav6

    1997tacomav6 V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger,2"pulley,meth, 625k

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    97 reg cab, v6 5sp 300hp supercharged, Methonal Injection, 625,001 plus miles, Original Owner
    V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger, 2" pulley, methanol injected AC TRD supercharger,(MUST DO) TRD supercharger ported, rebuilt 3 times over 500,000 miles, every 125,000- 150,000 needs rebuild Projector headlights HID 5 speed manual Amsoil for all drive train Smaller 2” pulley,(300hp) (MUST DO) 2004 DESNO fuel injectors, zero ping ping, 2004 side door mirrors Dick Cepek Rims, Michelin tires LTX, ( that last 100,000 miles) Now running Dynopro ATM mud and snow tires KN cold air intake Cat back exhaust with ss exhaust tip, Raised exhaust tail pipe to 2" below body line Optima*dry cell battery,red top Alpine sirius radio, 200 watt amp, focal is165 split door pod speakers Focal door speakers Subwoffer behind seat Viper alarm, Electric Locks Dark tinted windows, 4runner bucket seats, Tacoma Rubber floor mats TRD fender extenders, Bilstien shocks chrome push bar, chrome nerf bars, add a leaf for rear springs trailer iv hitch, electric brake control, Drilled slotted brakes, High carbon steel (MUST DO) EBS green stuff 7000 series pads(MUST DO) TRD engine oil cap TRD stick shift, Rear sliding window 2002 4Runner functional hood scoop cut into Tacoma hood, 4Runner dual overhead map light Gentex Auto dim + Compass + Temp, garage,rearview mirror Corbeau bucket seats Snow Methonal kit stage 2 Champion 3 core aluminum radiator Linex bed liner
    Ok, thanks, I have v6 with supercharger
     
  10. Mar 26, 2018 at 6:53 AM
    #10
    1997tacomav6

    1997tacomav6 V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger,2"pulley,meth, 625k

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    V6 5sp,RegCab,TRD Supercharger, 2" pulley, methanol injected AC TRD supercharger,(MUST DO) TRD supercharger ported, rebuilt 3 times over 500,000 miles, every 125,000- 150,000 needs rebuild Projector headlights HID 5 speed manual Amsoil for all drive train Smaller 2” pulley,(300hp) (MUST DO) 2004 DESNO fuel injectors, zero ping ping, 2004 side door mirrors Dick Cepek Rims, Michelin tires LTX, ( that last 100,000 miles) Now running Dynopro ATM mud and snow tires KN cold air intake Cat back exhaust with ss exhaust tip, Raised exhaust tail pipe to 2" below body line Optima*dry cell battery,red top Alpine sirius radio, 200 watt amp, focal is165 split door pod speakers Focal door speakers Subwoffer behind seat Viper alarm, Electric Locks Dark tinted windows, 4runner bucket seats, Tacoma Rubber floor mats TRD fender extenders, Bilstien shocks chrome push bar, chrome nerf bars, add a leaf for rear springs trailer iv hitch, electric brake control, Drilled slotted brakes, High carbon steel (MUST DO) EBS green stuff 7000 series pads(MUST DO) TRD engine oil cap TRD stick shift, Rear sliding window 2002 4Runner functional hood scoop cut into Tacoma hood, 4Runner dual overhead map light Gentex Auto dim + Compass + Temp, garage,rearview mirror Corbeau bucket seats Snow Methonal kit stage 2 Champion 3 core aluminum radiator Linex bed liner
    One last question, I see the groves for the height, can the height be changed once the spring is installed
    and mounted on the truck or dose the coil have to come off to set the spacer for a different height
     
  11. Mar 26, 2018 at 7:11 AM
    #11
    taco03Trd

    taco03Trd 03 rig trd v6

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    Ome 881 5100's jba's looking for more
    Like how much lift ? Want to stay under 3” so i dont have to change my uca’s
     
  12. Mar 26, 2018 at 8:10 AM
    #12
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    coil has to come off

    with stock springs bilstein advertises:

    1st setting: 0" lift
    2nd setting: 0.67" lift
    3rd setting: 1.25" lift
    4th setting: 2" lift

    with your truck and 881 springs probably add about 1" to 1.5" to each of those numbers
     
    1997tacomav6 likes this.
  13. Mar 26, 2018 at 8:19 AM
    #13
    taco03Trd

    taco03Trd 03 rig trd v6

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  14. Mar 26, 2018 at 10:46 AM
    #14
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    thats good kit. But you could piece it together cheaper yourself. Those are 620lb coils. your ride will be significantly stiffer. just depends on what you want out of your truck. For me just a easy going Daily driver. For my 97 tacoma off road/camp truck I have 600lbs coils on my kings with a front plate bumper and winch I got a little over 2.5" inch of lift i think.
     
  15. Mar 26, 2018 at 10:57 AM
    #15
    taco03Trd

    taco03Trd 03 rig trd v6

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    i see yea same here daily driver not realy offroading all city truck for sure . looking for a nice stance but not monster truck look LOL so 5100’ an 881 are in the top options for me so far .

    Thanks
     
  16. Apr 9, 2018 at 11:25 AM
    #16
    vasinvictor

    vasinvictor Junkie

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    Had to bump this thread to vouch for the Moog 81082. I have an '01 TRD quad cab prerunner v6 (280k miles), and changed the shocks to Bilstein 4600s (same as 5100s on 0" lift setting) with the stock trd spring. It was way softer. The real bummer was that I lowered my 6 lug 2" in the front using a shock sleeve and I was hitting the lower profile bumpstops ALL THE TIME. Not to mention the increased body roll. After reading threads (mainly this one) I decided to go with the Moog 81082 465lb linear rate springs https://www.amazon.com/Moog-81082-C...TF8&qid=1523298245&sr=8-1&keywords=moog+81082. Interestingly (and unlike @wolfgang123 found) they were the same height as the stock TRD progressive springs. I did not grind down the top coil, just left them as is. Also reused the stock 280k mile top hats and bushings. It only took 45 minutes to replace the spring because I didn't even need a coil compressor with the lowering sleeve. The ride is just peachy and took the roll back out of the cornering. Next on the list is a bigger swaybar!
     
    wolfgang123 [OP] likes this.
  17. Apr 9, 2018 at 12:31 PM
    #17
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    glad it worked out for you. Did you notice the drivers side coil spring was labeled and slightly taller than the other (moog coils) ??
     
  18. Apr 9, 2018 at 12:33 PM
    #18
    vasinvictor

    vasinvictor Junkie

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    Yes, same as you said. Thanks for posting up your findings.
     
  19. Apr 9, 2018 at 12:35 PM
    #19
    wolfgang123

    wolfgang123 [OP] Well-Known Member

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    People must be interested in this, the price of these coils on Amazon has jumped significantly since i started this thread
     
    Captainkyro likes this.
  20. Apr 9, 2018 at 2:03 PM
    #20
    firemaniac

    firemaniac Active Member

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    Getting started
    I am guessing no bumper and winch for the dailies?
    I am trying to find a good setup for a daily with an ARB, and Warn M8000, and keep it at or very near ride height. As it sets now, I have stock up front, on original springs, so anything may help as it sets.
    Any recommendations from your experience?
     

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