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The Tacoma Towing Bible

Discussion in 'Towing' started by maverick491, Nov 18, 2007.

  1. Jan 14, 2008 at 9:00 PM
    #41
    WilsonTheDog

    WilsonTheDog Kylie's dad

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    WOW. I've been looking into a hitch and related hardware. Guess I have all I need here.

    You da man, Maverick.
     
  2. Jan 16, 2008 at 9:58 PM
    #42
    jdubh

    jdubh Active Member

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    Here's my setup. In this picture the tongue jack and steps are down, but with the WD hitch it doesn't sag much in the back or front. We never unhooked to camp because we got in around 11pm. It was about 30F, rainy, and muddy out so this photo isn't very creative, I'll get a better one later.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Jan 24, 2008 at 11:02 PM
    #43
    TacomaTow

    TacomaTow New Member

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    Maverick,
    Thanks for all the great info. I'm new to the site and intend to tow my boat with my Taco. I don't have the rear spring TSB yet but will arrange for that soon.

    Thanks Again,
    TacomaTow
     
  4. Jan 27, 2008 at 6:09 PM
    #44
    CtryBoyInMT

    CtryBoyInMT Lifetime Member

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    Tinted windows, Rear locker anytime, Secondary filter delete, Parking light activated Fog lights, USA▪Spec Ipod adapter, Map light mod, Relocated 7-Blade, Warn Trans4mer Brushguard & winch, Tire chains, Homelink© installed in headliner, LED lighted 4x4 Switch, Defrost w/o A/C, Heated mirrors, Bilstein 5100's (1.75") & Rear TSB, 50w Reverse lights, Pratt & Whitney PT6A-68, Will this list ever end???
    HELP!!!
    I'm sure Maverick491 can provide numerous suggestions, but I'm starting to get fustrated with deciding where to install my brake controller.
    I took my tecumseh voyager inerta-activated out of my 97 tacoma and I'm having a hard time determining where to install this one. I really do like Maverick491's setup, but i can not for the life of me find that discontinued model. I would like to keep the inerta-activated controller, because it's been just so smooth the last 80K some towing miles.
    I'm half convinced to install it above the parking break handle, but it's a wee bit too close to the ignition key for my comfort.
    I know there are a few diehard towers out here that can give me some ideas. I have to make up my mind soon as I tow a trailer almost on a weekly basis.

    Thanks for the help!
     
  5. Jan 28, 2008 at 9:05 AM
    #45
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    Activator III brake controller, Extang Fulltilt toneau, Factory bed mat, Extra D-rings in the bed, 2ndary air filter removed, Garmin Ique GPS, Eco-2, AFE Pro Dry-s filter, USASPEC PA12-toy, Pioneer 3-way speakers, SG II on Blendmount, Gulf States Alarm added.
    I called them just to confirm that they still have the activator III in stock, and they told me that they do.Activator 3 for sale for $99

    As far as a place to mount any other type of brake controller in a Tacoma, particularly an inertia type which has to be kept completely level. (if memeory serves) I've got nothing constructive that isn't going to be either ugly (ie: on top of the dash). Or restrict your ability to access the manual engagement switch, (ie: in the little cubby infront of the manual shifter.) Sorry to let you down on that one.

    Let me know what you come up with, and take and send me some pictures and I'll add them into this thread to help out anyone else facing this situation.

    Regards,
     
  6. Jan 28, 2008 at 11:58 AM
    #46
    CtryBoyInMT

    CtryBoyInMT Lifetime Member

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    Thanks Mav!
    I swear I've been looking for that unit for a week straight now! I am just going to have to suck it up and buy one. Like I said, I love the inerta because their so smooth, once you get it set (Admit it's more laborsome than the time controlled), but you don't even realize the trailer is back there. And for everyone else, yes the inertia system needs to be level from Left to Right(Ex: drivers door to pax door).
     
  7. Jan 28, 2008 at 2:17 PM
    #47
    jdubh

    jdubh Active Member

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    I installed my Prodigy on the left side under the dash just under the little storage door, low enough to let it open all the way. There I can reach it and squeeze the manual brake if I need to and I can see it through the steering wheel by just glancing down with my eyes. It's very out of the way and I've never hit it by accident. I would use velcro to attach it though, rather than screwing it in like I did.
     
  8. Feb 3, 2008 at 12:53 PM
    #48
    Front Runner

    Front Runner Member

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    I've got a question about towing also. I've got a 06 reg. cab 2.4l (base model) with an automatic tranny. I recently purchased a open utility trailer (6x10) and the shipping weight is 900 lbs. I'll use it sometimes to haul my 750 pound bike. So it will total out near 1800lbs. When towing it empty the tranny will stay in top gear (I assume that's overdrive) and will only shift out of overdrive on hills when I dont wont my speed to drop. I know you spoke about taking it out of overdrive. What do I do, just ride with it in 3rd?? My gear selector only has 1,2,3 & D. I know when I haul my bike or anything else it will shift more often. I wont be doing any mountain driving, but where I live the land is not completely flat. Any suggestions??
     
  9. Feb 3, 2008 at 1:58 PM
    #49
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    Activator III brake controller, Extang Fulltilt toneau, Factory bed mat, Extra D-rings in the bed, 2ndary air filter removed, Garmin Ique GPS, Eco-2, AFE Pro Dry-s filter, USASPEC PA12-toy, Pioneer 3-way speakers, SG II on Blendmount, Gulf States Alarm added.
    It is the hunting between overdrive and direct drive that builds heat in an automatic transmission, and it is that heat that breaks down the fluid, and it is that broken down fluid that causes transmission failure.

    So with the empty trailer, you should be fine in overdrive, but as soon as there is a load, and the transmission begins to hunt (ie: jumping back and forth between overdrive and direct) you want to take it out of overdrive, so in your case that would be "3rd." The little extra gas that you'll burn in the lower gear is far less expensive than the $1500-$2000 transmission re-build would be.

    just as an asside your truck has a 2.7L engine, not a 2.4L.
     
  10. Feb 3, 2008 at 4:40 PM
    #50
    Front Runner

    Front Runner Member

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    Thanks guys. I learn something new everyday. I'm glad to know now that 4th is overdrive, because I had wondered about that. My other question is, by driving with the tranny in 3rd gear would that cause it to get hot too??
     
  11. Feb 3, 2008 at 4:52 PM
    #51
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    Nope.

    I don't know your age, so this may be before your time, but in the 50's and early 60's most car's transmissions stopped at direct drive. Hence the "3 on the tree" and "3 by the knee" phrases. Hell, GM was still only using a 3 speed auto in the 88 Fieros.

    Anyway, history lesson over. The purpose of overdrive is to save fuel, and has no relation to transmission wear.
     
  12. Feb 3, 2008 at 5:02 PM
    #52
    Front Runner

    Front Runner Member

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    Hey that's good to know. I'm only 31 so when I 1st got my license back in the mid 90's most cars had overdrives. :D
    Would a tranny cooler be a good idea or in my case would it be overkill in your opinion? Like I stated earlier, I'll mainly haul my bike around (with nothing else) every so often with the total weight of the trailer and load being about 1800 lbs.
     
  13. Feb 3, 2008 at 5:20 PM
    #53
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    Activator III brake controller, Extang Fulltilt toneau, Factory bed mat, Extra D-rings in the bed, 2ndary air filter removed, Garmin Ique GPS, Eco-2, AFE Pro Dry-s filter, USASPEC PA12-toy, Pioneer 3-way speakers, SG II on Blendmount, Gulf States Alarm added.
    I am also "only 31", but I spent a number of my formative years working in a classic car restoration shop hence my knowledge of transmissions that are older than I am.

    In regards to the trans cooler. Firstly, an automatic transmission can never be "too cool", but with that said, at 1800 lbs., you are at roughly half the tow rating of the truck. If you were going to tow at half rating every day, then I would say to go-ahead and have one put in, but if the towing is going to be like a once a month or less kind of thing, then I wouldn't worry about it.

    If your towing is going to be somewhere between the two extremes then I'd leave it up to you. It wouldn't do any harm to put one in, but it wouldn't likely be necessary either.

    A few words of caution if you do decide to put one in.

    1. Anytime you splice into "sealed" lines you open up the chance for leaks, so you would need to keep an eye out for leaks, and check the tightness of your hose clamps occasionally.

    2. When you add a cooler you are changing the fluid capacity of the system so be sure to add the appropriate amount of trans fluid to compensate. (It should be listed in the instructions for the cooler, but will likely never be more than a quart) *VERY IMPORTANT* since our trucks do NOT have trans fluid dipsticks*

    3. If you add a cooler you perhaps might want to wait untill you are out of warranty just to avoid any agravation that The dealer might want to throw your way should you need some kind of warranty repair.
     
  14. Feb 3, 2008 at 6:04 PM
    #54
    Front Runner

    Front Runner Member

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    You have a wealth of knowledge on this issue, thanks for sharing some of it with me. I hope I didnt come across wrong when I stated that I was "only 31", if I did that wasnt my purpose. I think I'll pass on the tranny cooler, and look forward to some good towing miles with the Tacoma. :thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  15. Feb 14, 2008 at 10:14 PM
    #55
    CtryBoyInMT

    CtryBoyInMT Lifetime Member

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    Tinted windows, Rear locker anytime, Secondary filter delete, Parking light activated Fog lights, USA▪Spec Ipod adapter, Map light mod, Relocated 7-Blade, Warn Trans4mer Brushguard & winch, Tire chains, Homelink© installed in headliner, LED lighted 4x4 Switch, Defrost w/o A/C, Heated mirrors, Bilstein 5100's (1.75") & Rear TSB, 50w Reverse lights, Pratt & Whitney PT6A-68, Will this list ever end???
    For What it's Worth,
    I received official news from the Toyota Dealer about the 7 blade to 4 pin Adapter. I went to the dealer and brought the window sticker with me saying, "See, Here it says converter, see!"
    Well they must have gone to corporate or something and got the official word. The Converter they're refering to is the converter for allowing the seperate turn signal and stop lights of the truck to operate a trailer with combined turn/stop lights.
    I said to myself, All this over $7 bucks, but for all you that got a free 7-4 adapter...[​IMG] Grrr!
     
  16. Mar 3, 2008 at 7:20 PM
    #56
    revn247

    revn247 Active Member

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    Eclipse AVN-6620 w/ Sirius
    Noob Question: what is the minimum height of the hitch from the ground (obviously not 1")? For an 08 DBL cab. stock height. Thanks.
     
  17. Mar 8, 2008 at 11:44 AM
    #57
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    07 4x4 Access Cab, TRD off road, 6 cyl, 6 spd
    Activator III brake controller, Extang Fulltilt toneau, Factory bed mat, Extra D-rings in the bed, 2ndary air filter removed, Garmin Ique GPS, Eco-2, AFE Pro Dry-s filter, USASPEC PA12-toy, Pioneer 3-way speakers, SG II on Blendmount, Gulf States Alarm added.
    Hoppy 43355 is the correct part number for a gen 2 truck you are good to go.

    Hoppy is a reputable company I would not have made the recommendation to use their product in the original series of posts if I did not feel that way. In fact, if you were to go and purchase the 4 cyl. 4-flat trailer wiring harness from Toyota you would see that it is just a re-badged Hoppy harness.
     
  18. Mar 8, 2008 at 11:53 AM
    #58
    maverick491

    maverick491 [OP] Towing Guru

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    Not following this question. THe receiver on the truck will be where ever it is, that is a function of the receiver design and the bolt holes on the frame. If you mean what is the correct drop or rise on the drawbar, well then that is directly related to the trailer being towed.

    In an ideal situation you want the trailer to be completely level or slightly nose down when it is completely loaded and underway, so you will need the correct drawbar drop or rise to achieve this. Example, I tow my travel trailer, my enclosed motorcycle trailer, and my father's boat with my truck. I have a different drawbar for each trailer as they all are a different height when loaded.

    Figuring this out is covered in post 5 at the beginning of this thread.
     
  19. Mar 30, 2008 at 6:19 PM
    #59
    mgaudet7

    mgaudet7 Well-Known Member

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    stock except for TRD seat covers
    Ok these questions will probably sound dumb, but i basically know nothing about towing and am planning on towing a small boat this summer. First thing, i bought my 06 trd offroad used and am not sure if it has the towing package. What is an obvious way to tell? Also mine is a manual tranny, i should never put it in 6th gear while towing right? Any other tips for towing with manual? I skimmed this thread for my answers but never found anything. Sorry if you've already answered this.
     
  20. Mar 30, 2008 at 7:01 PM
    #60
    piercedtiger

    piercedtiger Devout Atheist

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    Factory tow package has a Class IV hitch, bigger alt, bigger battery, oil cooler, and 7-pin adapter.

    Easiest things to check are the 7-pin mounted under the bumper on the driver side, and the oil cooler (look for lines running from near the oil filter up towards the radiator). Also, I think our fan clutch is pink for some reason. :confused: So look between the engine and fan. If the spacer-like thing is pink, you probably have factory tow package. You can also hit up the link in my sig, and go to my auxiliary reverse light mod post. I have pics that show the class IV hitch since I mounted the lights close to it. You could compare it to yours.

    As for towing in 6th, I've done it. Just have to make sure the engine has enough power and rpms (no lugging, no up hill). There's no reason you can't use it once up to speed on flats, or running down hills. And I've towed loads probably heavier than your boat.
     
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