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View Full Version : What do I need to know about wheeling an IFS Toyota


Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 10:39 AM
Just as the title states...

I'm finally getting near the point where I can spend some money on my 86 4 runner.

Gonna stay small for a while. Bumpers, sliders, rear locker, 31" all terrains I got for free.

I think my main questions relate to steering. Is this a weak link in IFS toyotas? Do I need to strip all the steering components at the junkyard so I have spares? What do I need to worry about?

Red_Chili
05-22-2008, 10:51 AM
Carry a spare CV and idler arm. The idler is a weak link; consider upgrading it.

You're gonna hate those 31s...

Pick the high level line where possible, and be aware that instead of that front tire dropping into the hole, the whole front end will tip into the hole. IFS will teach you skilz though.

That vintage of IFS is robust - except for the idler.

AxleIke
05-22-2008, 10:56 AM
x2 on the idler.

A decent brace can be had from Downey offroad for fairly cheap.

Total Chaos makes a 300 dollar replacement that will fix it for good.

CVs are all about the gas pedal.

Don't hammer the gas, and it'll be fine, and don't try to climb a rock or ledge with the wheels turned fully over.

Front lockers help with CV breakage, but not sure how much coin you are looking to spend.

Junk yard or SAS spares are good to have. I'd consider getting an idler, and a set of tie rods.

Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 11:08 AM
Idler arm - Check
This Looks like the Downey Product. For $50 I think its the ticker.
http://www.downeyoff-road.com/images_parts/MS-4.jpg

As for tires...

I know I will probably hate the 31's. I got them for free and they are almost brand new. I may step up to 33's, but then re-gearing is going to be mandatory.

Am I correct in my understanding that a front locker will help not break CV's? That seems counterintuitive to me. I'm not opposed to a front locker.

Red_Chili
05-22-2008, 11:17 AM
It will help BREAK the CVs... if used foolishly.

Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 11:20 AM
It will help BREAK the CVs... if used foolishly.


That is what I would have figured, I'm guessing AxleIke meant that lockers help break CV's

DaveInDenver
05-22-2008, 11:21 AM
Wheeling in an IFS truck can't be done. Don't try such insanity.





If you insist, here's a couple of trucks (besides AxleIke and tc) that I unashamedly steal ideas from.

http://www.yotatech.com/f86/sonoran-steel-work-truck-1990-4wd-mini-pickup-featuring-mighty-28-s-104077/

http://www.4x4wire.com/toyota/hottoy/west/

I have a Total Chaos idler arm. Previous to getting it I only ruined one idler and that was when my truck was very stock with 30" tires. They are the Achilles' Heal of IFS. Surf over at Yotatech and find the thread about using brass bushing in the stock idler, that helps. Or use the truss like you show. Ideally you do both, the truss keeps the arm from bending and replacing the nylon bushings increase the life and reduce the tendency for the shaft to defect into the frame horn.

I think the idea with a front locker is that it divides the torque between both wheels and that can help reduce breakage. Plus it helps you crawl more than do the High Flying Hilux Dave act. But really, with a locker I would think you'd be more prone to breaking axles overall.

DaveInDenver
05-22-2008, 11:37 AM
BTW, found a picture of my stock idler compared to the Total Chaos. There really is no comparison.

http://armbrusterweb.com/public/webshots/IMG_0491_alt.JPG

Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 11:38 AM
Cool. Thanks for the links, those help.

I'm undecided on a front locker. I'll probably due without until I start taking it places where I wish I had a front locker.

Plans right now:

Tires
Rear aussie Locker
Front / Rear Bumpers
Sliders
Budbuild cross memeber
Idler brace
4.7 t/case gears

Items I am considering
winch
Front Locker
63" chevy rear springs
Ball Joint Spacers
U Bolt Flip
1" body lift with drivetrain lift
Bigger tires / lower gears

Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 11:40 AM
BTW, found a picture of my stock idler compared to the Total Chaos. There really is no comparison.

http://armbrusterweb.com/public/webshots/IMG_0491_alt.JPG

I see your point, but at this point I can't justify spend the money on it. Ask me after I bend a couple :rant:

RockRunner
05-22-2008, 11:47 AM
Control is the key! I ran Pritchett with an IFS set up and made it just fine. There are times when a locker will save you from breakage as you may have traction on one tire and can crawl instead of the heavy foot.

31"s are not a death sentence but you have to know your limits, you can't go over a ledge that is three feet tall, heck I really can't but ......:p:.

Spare parts are a great thing to have but before you buy look at the price of upgrades. By the time you get your spares and put them on the trail, down time :mad:, you may break even getting some of the upgrades now.

You will always need a CV as a spare, I don't know if they still make HD CV's, but if they do that would be a very nice upgrade and you would have two spares.

Another thing to keep in mind, are you planning on doing a SAS or IFS lift? If a SAS you may not want to get a locker now, won't fit in the 8" and you would have to sell it. If doing the IFS lift any upgrades you do know will only improve the lift.

It all comes down to sensibility. What can you afford to break and replace? What do you not want to break on the trail? What can you afford to upgrade now?

Wheel within your budget and enjoy the summer :thumb:

nakman
05-22-2008, 11:53 AM
I think the point is with a locker if you're heavy on the gas then a front locker could potentially help prevent CV breakage. If you're lighter on the gas, then not so much.. just don't get into situatuations where a tire is spinning a million rpm's in mid air comes slamming down onto a rock (if locked in front this won't really happen). Also don't crank the wheels and then try to climb hard angles, or back up hard angles, or pull someone.. then don't worry about it.

IFS is fun though, if your front end goes into a dip the whole truck will tip, and the opposite back tire will raise. Uphill, the front can almost behave as one, like a boat on the lake, not a ton of flex going on. you don't have to worry about hitting the front diff on anything, just remember you've still got one in back. good times... :)

Man Jerk
05-22-2008, 11:57 AM
I do plan on SAS'ing this truck eventually - long term. I've spent enough time driving 50 miles + a day on 35's and don't want to do it anymore.

DaveInDenver
05-22-2008, 12:11 PM
My picture doesn't do that TC idler justice, it's got to weigh easily twice as much. Big fat tube, braced and uses a 4th mounting hole.

If you plan on doing a SAS, don't bother with a front locker. But if you follow the formula, a good IFS skid and truss, upgrade the idler and add armor, you might find it wheels just fine and is pretty dang comfortable daily. I dunno, I really like driving mine. It's no rock crawler, but I also don't dread the drive to Lake Tahoe one bit. Once I got A/C in my truck it's a pretty fair road warrior, just slow.

BTW, Nak, you do hit the front end on stuff a lot. Unlike a solid axle, the front ground clearance is not fixed and as the suspension cycles the front frame cross member dives to the rocks. That is why Bud builds a 55 lbs IFS skid plate using 3/16" material, it takes a beating. My old stock skid looks like a golf ball, all full of dents and dimples.

AxleIke
05-22-2008, 12:48 PM
If you are planning a SAS, as Dave said, don't bother with the front locker. The rear will get you MANY MANY places, and will work really well.

I know its not intuitive, but the front locker saves CVs all day long. If you are hard on the gas, you can break an axle, simple, doesn't matter what you've got.

In an open diff, when you have a wheel in the air, the wheel in the air spins. Not just spins, but spins TWICE as fast. So, any time you lift a front tire, which happens all the time during climbs on an IFS truck, that tire in the air starts to spin twice as fast as your rear tires are moving. So, when it comes down, it has to slow down, and gets quite a load transfered to it.

A locker prevents this. Both wheels turn all the time, and they spin at the normal rate of speed, identical to your rear.

Having done this for quite a few years now, and given that you plan to sas, I would recommend the following:

lock the rear, and regear at the same time. 4.88's are good for 33's. 5.29's if you plan to go bigger with the sas.

get a transfercase skid. It will give you some ground clearance, and give you peace of mind. it is also great after the SAS.

Now, I recommend no suspension lift. Get the rear springs replaced if you have butt sag, with something nice. 2" body, 2" drive train lifts from 4crawler, and get your transfercase skid to match. That will give you lots of room for tires, and give you precious belly clearance. IMO, the breakover is the biggest issue on an IFS rig. It sucks.

Leaving the front suspension geometry stock will REALLY help you keep your idler intact, and the tie rods and centerlink. For whatever reason, this stuff just doesn't like the extra angles. I would bend parts every single trip out when I had the front end jacked up. After relaxing to stock angles, I have broken 1 part in a year an a half. Lots better.

I HIGHLY, HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend transfer case gearing. Again, totally transferable with the SAS, and it makes a HUGE difference. It is night and day. I highly recommend an ultimate Marlin. Gives you essentially a 4speed transfer case, and independent high low/ 2-4 shifting, which is nice in tight turns and with a front locker. Buy Marlin, as you can't go wrong.

A belly skid is a bonus. Get a cross member from sonoran steel, and buy a budbuilt. Bud is an amazing guy, and I recommend him above all others.

Narrow 33's work really well on these trucks. They fit with no lift, and give you clearance without the weight. Its a light truck, and a heavy tire works it hard.

Sliders and bumpers are a must. You are low, and having the armor gives you the confidence you need.

I've got lots more, but probably have rambled enough for now.

Red_Chili
05-22-2008, 02:09 PM
5.29s aren't bad with 33s either, and let you move up in size later if you want. The 22RE likes to spin. You can use less throttle on the highway too. Your choice.

DaveInDenver
05-22-2008, 02:15 PM
5.29s aren't bad with 33s either, and let you move up in size later if you want. The 22RE likes to spin. You can use less throttle on the highway too. Your choice.
Yup. I'm running them with 33" tires, it's not hard to live with the 5.29 gears.

RockRunner
05-22-2008, 03:57 PM
5.29's are great gears from 33's to 37's Like Bill said a little more RPM's never hurt. Do the locker in the rear and you are two steps ahead while taking one. Plus you get a little bit better gearing till you go with bigger meats.

I guess it all comes down to money, make a list of what is important to you and do those things first. Be sure to see if you can kill two birds with one stone, it will save you time and money.

IFS works, tons of people run it on very gnarly trails. You just need to pay attention more.

Red_Chili
05-22-2008, 06:44 PM
Save money by setting up your own gears, installing your own lockers, too. Not hard if you pay attention to the small stuff.
www.gearinstalls.com
I tend not to load the carrier bearings quite as much as he does :eek: but I definitely run them tighter than the FSM directs.

beatdown83fj60
05-22-2008, 07:13 PM
Yup. I'm running them with 33" tires, it's not hard to live with the 5.29 gears.

Agreed, although I've only ran like that in a solid axle truck but that is the plan for my IFS truck that I currently own. My 80 pickup had a 22re out of an 89 4Runner and I ran 5:29's and 33x13.5.5 LTB's. It didn't bother me one bit and actually had a bit more get up and go versus stock gears with the stock tire size.

Evrgrnmtnman
05-23-2008, 10:02 AM
Love my 88 even though it is now my daily driver! Stock 4:10's, Detroit Locker in rear, Detroit Tru-Trac up front. Running the stock 235/75x15's now for gas mileage, however when I did use it for offroad I just switched the wheels and tires over to my other set of LT265/75x16's Bridgestone Dueller MT's. Did Spring Creek years ago, but did go around the bypass at the Rock Garden with some spotting help..........Now, it drives me to Wal Mart and back........even added a winch to help me out of those snow drifts in the parking lot.

leiniesred
05-23-2008, 05:33 PM
Get locking diffs front and rear 'cause you are always going to have at least 1 tire in the air.

Get the Idler arm brace. I didn't bend a single one. Ever. all the way up to 35x12.50s.

Get a spare halfshaft. It will break, someday. (I did it with the 35s and on 33x9.50s.)

Start savin' up for the SAS. You can always cut the live axle off and put the ifs back on if you really liked the IFS better!

Man Jerk
05-23-2008, 07:18 PM
Get locking diffs front and rear 'cause you are always going to have at least 1 tire in the air.

Get the Idler arm brace. I didn't bend a single one. Ever. all the way up to 35x12.50s.

Get a spare halfshaft. It will break, someday. (I did it with the 35s and on 33x9.50s.)

Start savin' up for the SAS. You can always cut the live axle off and put the ifs back on if you really liked the IFS better!

I much prefer the honey weiss :cheers:

farnhamstj
05-23-2008, 08:59 PM
Leaning how to change a CV axle and having the correct tools is much better done in a warm garage than in the dark. You will break parts if you wheel your rig. Learn to drive well and you will break less parts. Get a winch and a full recovery gear set as your first upgrade. Tire size will limit you to more tame trails, but that's good if you're new to it.

IFS rules!!!! of couse I have Land Cruiser IFS not mini-ifs. so what do I know.

DaveInDenver
05-23-2008, 09:35 PM
IFS rules!!!!
Just wanted to bring attention to it.

Jacket
05-23-2008, 10:11 PM
:bowdown: IFS

farnhamstj
05-23-2008, 10:21 PM
If you're running anything under 35's and if driving on the pavement is also enjoyable to you. Tires bigger than that or if you trailer your rig, sure go SA. I'm not trying to start a SA or ifs is better. I support Toyota's use of ifs in the US, our country is paved. I believe for many people ifs meets their needs. It does for me.

Evrgrnmtnman
05-24-2008, 09:15 AM
Love my IFS....one thing I do like about the SA is the turning radius........can make sharper turns with SA....However, I do love my IFS in my 88........