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cbmontgo
08-11-2008, 09:08 PM
I am confused these days...I have a strange itch to buy another Toyota, even though I have no use at all for one when my FJ60 is a real beauty and I still don't have much time to drive it. I am looking at some trail beaters, and have found some cool trucks as a result. This brings me to my next question:

What do you guys think about the 1st gen 4Runners? I really like the 85 ones with the SFA and fuel-injected 22RE. As a Land Cruiser guy, is a 4Runner a "step down" from an FJ40, 55, or 60? Are these built as stout as a LC? I have always thought that the fact you can drop the top on these is fantastic, and the look is very classic Toyota 1980s to me.

I know the ones from the early 90s had head gasket problems on the V6. What about the 22RE? Is this an engine that is as bulletproof as a 2F?

Carson

Rzeppa
08-11-2008, 09:55 PM
My daughter's first car was an 85 runner. Auto tranny, about 450k miles. 22RE is a good motor, but I found the timing chain service somewhat of a PITA. Changing the alternator is a PITA compared to Land Cruisers, and the starter is harder to get to. If the P/S pumps leaks, it leaks right onto the alternator, making it fail in short order. The rear window has about 200 bazillion interlocks and any one of them not working will prevent the window from rolling down.

By most accounts, the 85 is the best year for a stocker, last year of solid front axle, first year of FI. Multiport FI at that, I found out, not yer basic throttle body. Front and rear diffs are the smaller 8", but axles, birfs and driveshafts are Land Cruiser sized.

As far as a "step down", well that depends on your perspective. Personally, I like cruisers better, but runners are cool too.

AxleIke
08-11-2008, 11:30 PM
They are good trucks.

They have their own set of quirks, and character.

The plus they have over cruisers is they are easier on gas, and cheap to get into. You can pick them up from the 500-2000 range, and you'll get 15-20 mpg on a decently running motor. They are gutless stock. You can modify them to have some 'get up and go'. Parts are cheap, and the junk yards have a lot of them. Easier to get parts than older cruisers.

Downside? Rust. Very poor body construction. The back fenders were spot welded and sealed with body sealant. After 10 years, that sealant degraded, and water gets up there. You can get fiberglass 1/4s for cheap to fix this issue.

Step up or down? Personal opinion. I think they are a step up, but I'm a 4runner guy.

Its a Toyota, so its cool.

cbmontgo
08-12-2008, 07:37 AM
Good information...thanks, guys.

Rock Dog
08-12-2008, 08:30 AM
I own an FJ40, FJ80 and a 4runner. The 4runner is awsome offroad because it is Light and nimble. with a dual Marlin it also has something like a 210:1 crawl ratio.

It is different than the 40 in that the 40 is a tank that can thrash through most anything. The straight six is hard to kill.
With the runner it is more finese driving, as they are nimble, light and flexy. The longer wheel base really help them shine on certain trails. It also helps "baja'ing" down the trail.

I recently saw the 4Runner's do awsome on the Rubicon where others rigs had to really work. It was said the Rubicon is perfect for 4runners and mini trucks because of there wheel, and how thin they are.

If you want to know if they are good wheelers, follow Cheeseman on a few trail runs and you will be sold on them.

I love all 3 rigs and ech shine in different areas, but my runner does better in Moab than my 40, because of the longer wheelbase, and it does not beat me up to drive it out there..... Slow on the passes (22re is awsome but gutless on the passes), but easier on the pocket book as well.

Red_Chili
08-12-2008, 08:44 AM
1st gen 4Runners? Naw, stay away. I hate 'em. Total junk, tin cans and they fall apart, and you can't make them look like new, ever. Can't make the 22RE pull harder, and if you want even more, motor swaps are impossible. Weak drive train. Parts are different from year to year and you can't swap other minitruck parts to get what you need. Regearing is way harder than a cruiser or Dana axle to do, and transfer case options don't exist. Hard to work on, don't even try a 22RE overhaul, its too hard and aftermarket overhaul kits don't exist and are poor quality if they do. And expensive? Whew. Who can afford it. Can't wheel worth crap either once you've built it up. Lousy mileage on top of it all.















Wait, what?

Red_Chili
08-12-2008, 08:45 AM
(BTW, '85s are hard to get in good condition, and frankly it is just as expensive to make an 85 trail worthy as it is to SAS an 86-89 4Runner. So don't let that hold you back.)

Man Jerk
08-12-2008, 09:02 AM
Here is my take.

I daily drove and wheeled an FJ60 for 7 years or so. Last fall I bought an 86 4runner to replace my aged wagon.

The 4 runner is a sports car compared to the cruiser. It is a really nice size. Big enough, but way smaller than my wagon. The 4runners came with way more options that the cruisers did. Parts are cheap and plentiful. Modifications are cheap and plentiful.

I do miss my wagon sometimes. I don't miss the gas mileage or the parts cost though.

Uncle Ben
08-12-2008, 09:05 AM
1st gen 4Runners? Naw, stay away. I hate 'em. Total junk, tin cans and they fall apart, and you can't make them look like new, ever. Can't make the 22RE pull harder, and if you want even more, motor swaps are impossible. Weak drive train. Parts are different from year to year and you can't swap other minitruck parts to get what you need. Regearing is way harder than a cruiser or Dana axle to do, and transfer case options don't exist. Hard to work on, don't even try a 22RE overhaul, its too hard and aftermarket overhaul kits don't exist and are poor quality if they do. And expensive? Whew. Who can afford it. Can't wheel worth crap either once you've built it up. Lousy mileage on top of it all.


That should be a quote! :thumb:

AxleIke
08-12-2008, 09:44 AM
The part about the 85's that bill brought up is a good point.

You will likely want to redo the front hangars, put on highsteer, and rework the rear suspension. It costs as much as a SAS on an IFS truck.

Stock minitruck SA steering is horrid.

Red_Chili
08-12-2008, 10:08 AM
That should be a quote! :thumb:
If you figure out how to turn it upside down, if you take my meaning.

Red_Chili
08-12-2008, 10:10 AM
The part about the 85's that bill brought up is a good point.

You will likely want to redo the front hangars, put on highsteer, and rework the rear suspension. It costs as much as a SAS on an IFS truck.

Stock minitruck SA steering is horrid.
It can be fixed, and reliably, but this involves changing the steering box to an IFS unit, and modifying the frame to accept it. And OBTW you want an IFS rear axle for the track width. So you see where the money goes... the SA truck does give you a frame capable of more up travel though. Not huge, but something.

cbmontgo
08-12-2008, 05:09 PM
This is interesting stuff; you just don't seem to hear as much about mini truck these days, and I had no idea.

subzali
08-12-2008, 05:25 PM
If you ask on this forum, Bill, Isaac and Dave will give you pretty much all you need to know about minitrucks! :lmao: I learn things I didn't really want to know about them just from being around those guys! But I will say I love my little red truck as a DD, and though it doesn't share the extra gearbox and axle shafts as its 4x4 brethren, the 22RE, in all its bulletproof wonder, has me impressed almost every day.

The alternator is a serious PITA, on my truck I don't know of a way to do it without removing the distributor and power steering pump, and the p/s pump has six bolts on two axes that you have to get threaded, and two of them you can't see.

IMO, once you've done the timing chain once it's not so bad after that. The head gasket, though, I would probably never do again myself.

I would definitely spring for a '86-'97 4runner or pickup/Tacoma with a 4cyl and 5 spd manual in a second if only I wasn't so hung up on getting a diesel Land Cruiser. The Land Cruiser just has more appeal to me. But I love my pickup, I love my sister's '97 Taco 4x4, I'm jealous of my friend who bought a '99 Taco 4cyl with the TRD package. Toyotas are just intuitive to me.

Hayes
08-12-2008, 05:42 PM
alternator was easy, just go in from the bottom. You have to drain the radiator and remove the lower hose and then you can just work away in there... Takes me about an hour and a half.

Hayes
08-12-2008, 05:42 PM
and I am a crappy mechanic...

Rzeppa
08-12-2008, 06:21 PM
alternator was easy, just go in from the bottom. You have to drain the radiator and remove the lower hose and then you can just work away in there... Takes me about an hour and a half.

The manual says you have to do that, but I figured out a way you don't have to. You do have to unfasten the fan shroud and cut it (fix the cut with duct tape - it works), but you don't have to remove the lower radiator hose using that method. It's still a PITA, but more like 45 minutes instead of 1.5 hours plus coolant. The 22RE was certainly a learning experience for my daughter and I compared to Land Cruisers though. She's a good wrench too; when we rebuilt her rear differential all I had to do was hand her tools and offer advice :-)

Hayes
08-12-2008, 06:31 PM
She's a good wrench too; when we rebuilt her rear differential all I had to do was hand her tools and offer advice :-)

Sweet! Woman who wrench are awesome! So...how old is she and what's she do now?:D Just kidding...kinda!

Rzeppa
08-12-2008, 06:40 PM
Sweet! Woman who wrench are awesome! So...how old is she and what's she do now?:D Just kidding...kinda!

She's 24 and works at Outback Steakhouse near SW Plaza. Unfortunately she drives a Sebering now :-(

Hayes
08-12-2008, 06:49 PM
She's 24 and works at Outback Steakhouse near SW Plaza. Unfortunately she drives a Sebering now :-(

That's just sad... Did you cry when she stopped driving Toyota's?

And do you want to have a M&G at her work...next time she is working??:D

Hulk
08-12-2008, 07:03 PM
That's just sad... Did you cry when she stopped driving Toyota's?

And do you want to have a M&G at her work...next time she is working??:D

M&G = Meet and Greet????

Hayes
08-12-2008, 07:08 PM
M&G = Meet and Greet????

yup:D

subzali
08-12-2008, 09:52 PM
You know, that would probably work (draining the radiator, to get back on topic :rolleyes:) if you weren't on the way home from climbing a 14er and had to change it in the parking lot of an Autozone, or when the tensioning bolt was stripped so you had to change it in the parking lot of NAPA and be 3 hours late to work... :rant:

But I'm getting pretty good at matching the dizzy up on the correct tooth and adjusting the timing :rolleyes: :D

RockRunner
08-13-2008, 12:41 PM
Carson,

I am running a 85 4Runner set up with the Marlin Ultimate transfers cases and his long travel suspension. For the most part I am happy with this set up, the transfer cases are awesome. The control you get when you are creeping in a super low gear is amazing, my wife loves driving it like that.

I think Bill mentioned getting a newer one than the 85 and I have to agree with him. You will save a ton of money by doing that, that is if you are planning to build it for some real rock crawling. When I build mine up two years ago now I cut the complete suspension of the rig. At one point it was just sitting on the frame rails and four jack stands.

The amount of travel you loose compared to the $$$ saved make sit a no brainer. Now if you want to buy the truck and wheel it ASAP with out doing a bunch of stuff the 85 is hard to beat.

Here are some pros and cons of the various years. I am sure I will forget some so others can pitch in or give their opinion.

1984

Pro Solid axle, carburated, cheapest of the bunch

Con Carburetor, no SR5 models to my knowledge. Rust

1985

Pro 22 RE (EFI), Solid axle, SR5 models, slap on some tires and wheel it. cheap 4" lifts installed in 2-3 hours. parts all over the place.

Cons 22 RE is short on power, hard to find, more expensive than newer year models if in good shape. If you do the long travel lift you need a newer rear axle $$ Rust.

1986-89 Pros, V6 power, more of them around, SR5 models with sunroofs, better interiors, has wider axle already and IFS steering box for future lift, less rust, possible Turbo model if found, auto tranny

Cons IFS suspension, V6 (Head gaskets), not to many power up options, auto tranny, more $$$ to buy, front gears are 7.5 not to many choices for a locker and strength becomes an issue, if lifted IFS problems with CV joints leaking/breaking.

My perfect scenario now that I know what I know.

Buy an 1989 V6 SR5 white 5 speed with gray interior. Cut entire suspension of and replace with Marlins hangers, National springs, Marlins cross over steering, 85 solid front axle with an Elocker, 5.29 gears, IFS brakes, rear axle converted to accept Elocker/5.29, Marlin Ultimate crawler box (224 to 1 crawl ratio if 2.8 and 4.7 used)

Custom tube work around the whole rig with mounting points for a RTT, soft top, Big open fenders, Rhino lining inside and bottom half, Half doors and full doors, Ham, CB, Nice stereo, tire carrier with high lift, two 5 gallon can holders on RR bumper also, lights all around, high output alternator, dual battery set up and wired for power front and rear, LED's and HID lights.

Well that pretty much describes Bill's truck, Cheeseman's, Leine's, and mine. Bill's is much nicer and more power, Leine's just needs a cage and cheeseman's is looking awesome. Mine..........well I have four different colors on the truck in the winter, still have the 22RE, not a SR5 but she crawls with the best of them.

In short I highly recommend the 4Runners:thumb::thumb: If you are ever in the neighborhood, yeah like anybody lives close to me. Stop on by and take it for a spin, they are great rigs and versatile.

Sorry for the loooooong post :cheers:

PS they do have the right wheelbase to make it up the Escalator

DaveInDenver
08-13-2008, 01:56 PM
Everyone lists the IFS as a con. Here's some random thoughts on the subject from your friendly neighborhood delusional owner.

From purely a crawling aspect, IFS takes a third row seat to a solid axle. But don't believe the Internet wisdom completely. It can work fine and doesn't take a lot to make passable.

The key is add a rear truss and a beefed up idler arm of some sort. Add low profile bump stops and away you go up to about 31" tires. If you want to run 32" or 33" tires, install ball joint spacers.

NEVER RUN A BRACKET LIFT! At least on a truck you intend to wheel. If 35"+ tires are the goal, just do the SAS. Bracket lifts are usually at the root of cracked frames or broken front diffs. Just too much flex in the sub frame.

The 7.5 front diff is fine in the application. It's less overwhelmed in this application than a 8" is in the front of an 80 series. The outer CV joint is just as strong as a solid axle Birfield, although the inner CV joint does need to be limited to how far you push it. When they say the max angle on the inner joint is 22 degrees, that's a hard limit. There's not a lot of margin in the travel on that joint. Within it's range of motion, it's fine, pushed to the limit of it's travel, it will break.

In some ways the IFS trucks are better. Other than the idler it's got significantly better steering, for one. The IFS trucks, even the 4 cylinder, have better brakes. But the IFS V6 brakes are about as good as any brakes on any truck.

It's when you go to 33x12.50 or taller tires, then IFS is simply over matched and there's not much you can do to work around it. But my suspension cycled reasonably well on the Rubicon and I have much too stiff torsion bars. No CV grenades, no broken ball joints, no blown tie rod ends. What I DID break were leaf springs...

The 7.5 inch diff has an ARB Air Locker, True Trac, Lock Right, EZ Locker or the Toyota Supra limited slip available. It's not really an issue, most people are gonna do an Air Locker or LSD in the front anyway. If someone does a Lock Right, they eventually do the ARB...

Isaac's truck does pretty good in the rocks, too. It's all about bounding the build. Stick to 33x10.50 or smaller tires, IFS is pretty easy to make reliable, although it will never flex as well as a solid axle. OTOH, they ride nice on dirt roads and highways. So it's trade-off.

The 3VZ does not make much more power than a 22R-E and is generally regarded as second class. I personally have never owned one, but have always thought it got a bad rap, Rudy's seems to last OK and he is not kind to his motor. Shrug. The reason in my mind to get a 3.0L truck is that they are easier to swap to a 3.4L if that's what you want. Otherwise, embrace the slowness and opt for the 22R-E.

So there you go, representing for the IFS posse. I think for whatever reason, everyone's convinced that IFS is junk and it's not. It has a limit and it's not easy to go way beyond those limits. You can lift a solid axle truck 4" or 6" pretty easily and fit 35" or 37" tires, where as 2" is about the limit with IFS and so that makes 33" tires is pretty much the maximum.

The main way to significantly improve stock IFS is a long travel conversion. This is no cheaper than a SAS, but does achieve a lot of the same goals. It has advantages over a SAS, primarily in ride quality on less improved roads and will hold it's own on many technical trails. Still, it's not quite a substitute for an SAS. But having 12" of wheel travel makes them attractive.

RockRunner
08-13-2008, 02:58 PM
Everyone lists the IFS as a con.

I was just keeping it simple, IFS works for many. I ran my 91 4runner with IFS up pritchett canyon, made everything except for the "Rock Pile"



The 7.5 inch diff has an ARB Air Locker, True Trac, Lock Right, EZ Locker or the Toyota Supra limited slip available. It's not really an issue, most people are gonna do an Air Locker or LSD in the front anyway. If someone does a Lock Right, they eventually do the ARB...

There are more options for front lockers but I still believe with the 7.5 ring that locking the front only increases the breakage percentage. DAMHIK




So there you go, representing for the IFS posse. I think for whatever reason, every one's convinced that IFS is junk and it's not.

Not junk, but when looking for 4runners most will look for the solid vs the IFS. IFS will get you nearly anywhere you want to go, in comfort too but.........when you look in your crystal ball and you see 37's then you also see a solid axle attached to it.

The main way to significantly improve stock IFS is a long travel conversion. This is no cheaper than a SAS, but does achieve a lot of the same goals. .

Long travel kits are great, very expensive too like you said. I guess you also need to look at the fact if it is a daily driver or a weekend warrior.

We all have our opinions on IFS or solid, auto vs manual, gearing vs power etc. I tried to give him the general idea of what some owners do with their 4Runners/mini trucks. Of course $$$ is the greatest decision maker of all, I have a hard time building up an IFS only to go to a solid axle later so I would advice someone to start of solid or cut and swap to solid. About the same $$$ as a good IFS lift with long travel, maybe less.

Dave not knocking you BTW, just clarifying some of my views. I ran IFS for 8 years and conquered many tough trails.

Squishy!
08-13-2008, 04:17 PM
If you ask on this forum, Bill, Isaac and Dave will give you pretty much all you need to know about minitrucks! :lmao:

I'm hurt you would forget about me... :(

subzali
08-13-2008, 04:24 PM
I knew someone would say it...sorry Squishy! And Cheeseman, and leiniesred, and Rockrunner, and everybody else I can't remember at the moment...

DaveInDenver
08-13-2008, 05:31 PM
I knew someone would say it...sorry Squishy! And Cheeseman, and leiniesred, and Rockrunner, and everybody else I can't remember at the moment...
It's OK, mini trucks are pretty much below the radar (pun intended) to you Cruiser guys. We are only useful when you need a beer and parts run, otherwise Hilux-what?

Rock Dog
08-13-2008, 05:45 PM
I just want to point out that in many cases the IFS steering box, even on an IFS truck is moved further forward to get just a bit more wheelbase... you often beef up the frame when doing this, just like you would for an 85...
You also generally end up spending the extra for High steer arms to move everything up high in either rig, so i don't see where it is that much more expensive to build the 85 than swapping in a Solid Axle on an 86 + rig...

to convert the IFS you buy a front axle... to convert an 85 you buy a rear axle (which are generally cheaper, and easy to bolt up), and IFS steering box.. and it is not required to initially swap the rear axle to get a good performing truck and do that swap later if you are tight on funds..

The 85 did come in an SR5 with the sun roof and many of the bells and whistles.
The 22RE is a factor especially once you start getting into the larger tires, but is one of the most dependable engines ever put out by Toyota.

I love my 85 runner, and am building another 85 runner for my brother :D

cbmontgo
08-13-2008, 06:50 PM
I truly appreciate the insight, guys. At this point, I don't plan to do too much hard-core stuff, so right now it would be a rig I'd beat around in the mountains until I eventually build it up a little better. This would basically be a machine that I'd drive through high water crossings and not care if some of it crept into the cab and made it smell like a swamp for a few weeks. I also like the fuel injection, which seems to be better suited for high elevation trails. Also, I have always had a "thing" for those 4Runners without a top...

At the end of the day, it's just another toy for me to tinker with. Am I a bad person if I just love these 1980s Toyotas? There's just nothing like that little ticking Toyota engine.

I'd love to see some of your rigs at the next meeting if I can make it...just so hard to do lately between the new home improvement projects and kids...

Red_Chili
08-14-2008, 08:53 AM
This is interesting stuff; you just don't seem to hear as much about mini truck these days, and I had no idea.
That's kinda like a rancher in Wyoming saying he's never actually heard much about African Americans, ain't it?
:lmao:

You won't hear much on Mud in comparison to other forums. You may hear some here. Minis take a back seat in Trails but they are there at least.

Most of the forums I hang on are more like, "Cruiser, what? Oh yeah, I hear the 80s are nice if you can afford the gas and squeeze one in your garage. I use the front diff in my 4Runner..."

Hey Subzali, you would do the timing chain but never a HG? The HG is the SIMPLE part! Going back in after having done a no-head-removal timing chain, not so much...

The alternator came out of the Chili when it had a 22RE without removing anything or draining anything. It was a Rubik's Cube exercise, but it did. I was running a 90s V6 radiator though (a worthy upgrade should your rad develop pinholes in the top, a common problem due to electrolysis, >120K miles). That lower hose placement is the deciding factor. The V6 rad gives an unanticipated benefit.

I wonder if simply unbolting the rad and the fan shroud, and sliding things passenger a tad would work? Dunno.

Regards moving the IFS box, I never had to - that one is a bit of a pain but not all that bad. Used the hammer mod on the firewall, and a shortened FJ80 pitman which slows the steering slightly - I like it. Or you can use short steering arms when you do the SAS. You DO need to brace the frame under the box though, whether SA or SAS. Ask Cheeseman about that. :rolleyes: Very simple mod. There are kits, or there is the Sawzall/plasma cutter and steel stock, your choice.

I am a SAS guy AND an IFS guy. I don't find that the IFS rides all that much nicer than my SAS with quality springs (read: Alcan, $500/axle and worth it). I can zip right along over rough stuff in my SAS and have had guys running All-Pro / Marlin / TrailGear springs (pretty much the same stuff) have to fall back because their teeth were swapping sockets. The Taco with OME springs up front rides like a board. The '93 pickup is OK, but pretty boardlike too (stock suspension F&R, I expect the sacked rear to ride rough, but the front would soften up with a winch). Remove the front swaybar, have Beater make yard art out of it, and the IFS works slightly better. Wheeled a number of years with IFS. It will do it.

And you always have the option to cut it out later!:thumb:

There is a lot of knowledge about minis in the club, any of the gentlemen with a mini can help. Or Squishy.:hill:

DaveInDenver
08-14-2008, 10:01 AM
We all have our opinions on IFS or solid, auto vs manual, gearing vs power etc. I tried to give him the general idea of what some owners do with their 4Runners/mini trucks. Of course $$$ is the greatest decision maker of all, I have a hard time building up an IFS only to go to a solid axle later so I would advice someone to start of solid or cut and swap to solid. About the same $$$ as a good IFS lift with long travel, maybe less.
This is sort of the rub, what the purpose of the truck is. The only thing that I probably wouldn't have spent money on was the front Air Locker if I was planning on an SAS, that is tougher to recoup. Although the locker itself is the same for the torsion bar IFS trucks as it is for 1996-2002 4Runners and 1995-2003 Tacomas, just different housings. So it would be harder to sell an assembled torsion IFS third member than just the locker by itself.

But other than the locker, an IFS truss is $75, idler truss is $50 and low profile bump stops are $30. That's all that is basically necessary to reliably take a 31" tire IFS off road. Throw in $100 for ball joint spacers and $100 for a pair of longer travel shocks and that's about the extent of what you can or need to do. If the eventual goal is 37" tires, I think that's an OK intermediate step that does not cost a ton of money and will wheel fine in the mean time. Lockers, skid plates and all that, not truly necessary and more so if you don't care if the IFS breaks before it sees the torch.

But my opinion is that no one should ever put one of those bolt-on lifts on an IFS truck, so that's money never spent. Now long travel, that's really a fork in the build road. A Total Chaos suspension will work pretty well, but I think someone who decides that route is probably not building a pure rock crawler anyway and wouldn't be narrowly focused on an SAS. I personally flip-flop between SAS and TC. At the moment, I'm leaning into the long travel IFS camp again and pretty solidly at the moment. Rubicon was fun, but it's really just not my cup of tea. I'm dragging around a long wheel base and camper, I have no business tackling hard core trails.

RockRunner
08-14-2008, 10:36 AM
Dave,
you are right on the nose with your comment regarding the purpose of the vehicle. That right there should decide what you are going to do, problem is that people flip flop and then waste money in the process.

My 91 4Runner was build in 93 so the choices were awfully limited. The things you talk about now did not even come into play then. I used a Pro Comp front set up that we modified some and custom rear coils from Alcan, those gave me some crazy flex making up for the front IFS limits.

I understand your position on the subject, it's just my take is a little different. It used to be 33" tires were huge, now me on my 37's are considered small (depending on the trail of course) The deal is that a lot of trails have changed so much over the years that you can't do them with 31/33's anymore. If all you want to do is 2-5 or 1-3 type trails you are fine with 31's IMO but it seems that people always get sucked into doing a little tougher trails than they should/can.

I think Carson has the right idea, he doesn't need a crawler for what he wants to do. Building up his IFS a little will enhance his ride and make for a more enjoyable time.

Carson,

Get out there and wheel the thing till you decide to change it up, if you do, then come back and all of us will give you our opinions on what you should do with YOUR money ;)

PS Bill as soon as I find some money floating around, yeah right, Alcan will get a call. For now the Marlins are doing OK. They did send me some HD rear springs to try since mu others were sagging. I can't install them yet due to my back. I may put out a "Help" message in the near future so I can get them on before winter.

Red_Chili
08-14-2008, 10:41 AM
Dave brings up a good point. I wanted to build a truck that would be comfortable on the highway and also on Holy Cross, Spring Creek, etc. To do that is a tad spendy. Worth it IMHO, but YMMV. You really need to decide what you want to do with your truck, then build it for that purpose. Then ask yourself if you just lied to yourself - or you will spend the same money twice, DAMHIK. :lmao:

Having built a decent expedition/hunting/tough trail truck, though, I have a 93 pickup for daily use and as a dispose-a-truck. Only after I rebuilt the motor, clean things up, improve the interior with good used parts, etc. I am finding I don't DO dispose-a-truck. Oh well. But it will (knock on steel) never be SAS because that is not its purpose.

BTW, Dave, you can run 33s with only a BL, and 35s with a TB crank and a BL (and a hammer) so all that other IFS stuff is not really necessary. But for 31" wheeling, here is the mod list for a from-the-factory SA truck:
-
-
-
-
-

DaveInDenver
08-14-2008, 10:42 AM
seems that people always get sucked into doing a little tougher trails than they should/can.
LOL! Don't I know it...

http://armbrusterweb.com/tripsfolder/longtripsfolder/rubithon08folder/files/page75_15.jpg

Red_Chili
08-14-2008, 10:49 AM
SICK IFS flex!

DaveInDenver
08-14-2008, 10:57 AM
BTW, Dave, you can run 33s with only a BL, and 35s with a TB crank and a BL (and a hammer) so all that other IFS stuff is not really necessary.
Ball joint spacers and cranked torsions with lower profile upper stops are a bad idea. Just my $0.02, but it should be one or the other for a max of 1.5" of lift. With tall stock upper bumps and the 1.5" SDORI spacers, my CV axles are right at their max droop without binding. Low profile upper stops /and/ BJ spacers, that would be many, many blown CV axles IMHO. I run 33x10.50 MTs on 3.75" backspaced 15"x7" wheels and I had to clearance my inner fenders pretty heavily with the BFH and I touch just slightly. It seems in my case 35" tires will mean Ivan Stewart fenders or at least cutting and re-building the inner fender for sure.

BTW, that flex is with 25mm torsion bars, imagine 22.5mm stockers! By my calibrated Stanley tape measure, it's an honest 8" window of wheel travel with the torsions not connected. It's pretty pathetic compared to a 4" lifted leaf spring front end, but it's on the better side of a decent stock suspension. Supposedly the stock torsion IFS is capable of 9" total travel, but before the spacers I had to really torque the arms with a cheater to get a legit 7". But my control arm bushings are 200,000 miles old and have lost their flex.

cbmontgo
08-14-2008, 11:14 AM
LOL! Don't I know it...

http://armbrusterweb.com/tripsfolder/longtripsfolder/rubithon08folder/files/page75_15.jpg

Nice!

Red_Chili
08-14-2008, 02:41 PM
Ball joint spacers and cranked torsions with lower profile upper stops are a bad idea.
That's why I did not mention it, though it can be made to work (see next).
With tall stock upper bumps and the 1.5" SDORI spacers, my CV axles are right at their max droop without binding. Low profile upper stops /and/ BJ spacers, that would be many, many blown CV axles IMHO.
Drop the diff. No more blown CVs. Angle it a bit and you still have a smooth front driveline too.

A BL has much to recommend it (within reason, 2" max - pulling the motor/trans is easier, wiring is simpler, you can raise your gas tank, you get lift with no suspension stress...). I am running stock suspension - no crank, 2" BL, 33x10.50 tires, and the only rubbing I get is at a slight turn and HAMMERING a bump. That is with no BFH mod, too. Put a modest suspension lift in the mix, drop the diff to save the CVs, do the BFH mod, I see no reason a fella could not run 35s if he was of a mind to. With little added stress (unless he got stupid backing up a hill slightly turned with the front diff locked).

DaveInDenver
08-14-2008, 05:22 PM
Duh, BL = body lift. I read that as 'B'all joint 'L'ift. Such a dork. Don't have a body lift, thus why my fender-met-a-BFH.
Drop the diff. No more blown CVs. Angle it a bit and you still have a smooth front driveline too.
Diff drops don't seem like they'd be very easy on our generation IFS because of the front cross member. It pivots the pinion down if you lower the rear two mounts because of the front mount being pretty inflexible. Plus with a diff drop it makes the rear IFS truss harder to fit (just need a custom one, off the shelf units assume none).

10192

http://sonoransteel.com/Early_IFS_Brace_Installed.jpg

BTW, Steve Schaefer's shop truck is a pretty good example of a capable, budget build.

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

http://www.sonoransteel.com/1990_Mini/032.JPG

cbmontgo
08-14-2008, 07:38 PM
Duh, BL = body lift. I read that as 'B'all joint 'L'ift. Such a dork. Don't have a body lift, thus why my fender-met-a-BFH.

Diff drops don't seem like they'd be very easy on our generation IFS because of the front cross member. It pivots the pinion down if you lower the rear two mounts because of the front mount being pretty inflexible. Plus with a diff drop it makes the rear IFS truss harder to fit (just need a custom one, off the shelf units assume none).

10192

http://sonoransteel.com/Early_IFS_Brace_Installed.jpg

BTW, Steve Schaefer's shop truck is a pretty good example of a capable, budget build.


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

http://www.sonoransteel.com/1990_Mini/032.JPG

Cool.

These rigs with the 3.0 V6 that came later...how hard is it to change out the timing belt and head gaskets that you always hear about? Those early 90s 4Runners are dirt cheap these days too...

What do you guys think about those? No top off, but I always liked the body style.

Red_Chili
08-15-2008, 09:00 AM
Royal pain in the butt. Not an easy motor to work on. Lousy mileage too - although with only 31s and in prime tune I did get 21mpg out of my '89 XtraCab 3.0 on the highway. Before the HGs failed.

I never got better than 15mpg in my '90 4Runner 3.0, however. Before and after its HGs failed and we had to put in a new shortblock (wife drove it at that time :rolleyes:).

It IS, however, a great platform for a 3.4L swap! The most painless one in fact. That would be the only reason I would buy one.

cbmontgo
08-15-2008, 11:51 AM
Royal pain in the butt. Not an easy motor to work on. Lousy mileage too - although with only 31s and in prime tune I did get 21mpg out of my '89 XtraCab 3.0 on the highway. Before the HGs failed.

I never got better than 15mpg in my '90 4Runner 3.0, however. Before and after its HGs failed and we had to put in a new shortblock (wife drove it at that time :rolleyes:).

It IS, however, a great platform for a 3.4L swap! The most painless one in fact. That would be the only reason I would buy one.

With a new head gasket and timing belt, would the 3.0 be a pretty reliable engine?

AxleIke
08-15-2008, 12:23 PM
With regard to the 3.0.

I have a buddy with a 3.4 swapped truck, 95 4runner.

With the 3.4L motor, he has more power, better gas mileage, AND he gained TONS of room in the engine bay.

I cannot think of a toyota motor that is worse to work on than the 3.0.

IMO, don't bother.

DaveInDenver
08-15-2008, 12:24 PM
With a new head gasket and timing belt, would the 3.0 be a pretty reliable engine?
For all of the bad rumors, the 3VZ is really an OK motor. It does not make much more power than a 22R-E and so the risk/reward isn't high, but with good headgaskets they do last alright. Can do 200K when they don't blow HGs and get regular maintenance. Like Isaac says, the 3.4L is a better motor, but is it worth the time and effort to swap? Hard to say, if you have a 3.0L that's running OK it would be hard to justify for me to spend the money and weekends swapping it out just 'cause. I would not rebuild a 3.0L, though.

AxleIke
08-15-2008, 12:24 PM
http://sonoransteel.com/Early_IFS_Brace_Installed.jpg




That is a cool truck right there :D

Okay, shameless plug for my truck, I'll admit

Red_Chili
08-15-2008, 12:26 PM
With a new head gasket and timing belt, would the 3.0 be a pretty reliable engine?
In my opinion, based on experience, having been 2 for 2 on premature HG failures, one costing a short block, on well maintained machines, I would have to say no. The head clamping arrangement is substandard, and the things cannot breathe.

Brian Cobain did his 3.4L swap into a pre-96 4Runner in a weekend. While he is a very good mechanic, this does let you know the swap is not unreasonable.

A 3.4L in a first generation 4Runner is just about ideal in terms of power, reliability, and mileage. Plus grin factor. Supercharge it, and you better get some teeth whitener cuz folks will get a lot of chances to inspect them.

cbmontgo
08-15-2008, 02:25 PM
Hmmmm.

I just found a perfect condition 1990 2nd gen 2-door (rare) with a new head gasket, water pump, and timing belt replaced with 186,000 miles, no rust, and good maintenance history. Such a clean rig and runs great...but I am nervous about this motor from what I hear here. It is cool because it's so unusual, but...

DaveInDenver
08-15-2008, 02:39 PM
Hmmmm.

I just found a perfect condition 1990 2nd gen 2-door (rare) with a new head gasket, water pump, and timing belt replaced with 186,000 miles, no rust, and good maintenance history. Such a clean rig and runs great...but I am nervous about this motor from what I hear here. It is cool because it's so unusual, but...
If it runs reasonably well and the price is fair, I wouldn't worry much. Having a 2-door 2nd gen 4Runner would be cool alone. So what if the engine goes, put in a 3.4L and have a super cool truck. If the engine is original with 186K and has had the HG recall done, it's probably good for a while more.

Volcom
08-15-2008, 02:46 PM
I love my 1st gen 4Runner! Depends on what you like to do with your rig but for the $$$ invested, mine does pretty well on the toughest stuff CO has to offer.

It's streetable (just barely - 40's and a fresh 22RE swap barely keep up with traffic on a flat highway :D) but I do end up towing it 95% of the time.

http://www.volcom.rockfrogs.org/CO4RJ-08/001.jpg

http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b302/fretslider51/Holy%20Cross/DSCN2178.jpg

http://www.volcom.rockfrogs.org/CO4RJ-08/003.jpg

Like everyone else has said, parts are cheap, easy to work on, tons of vendors to choose from, etc....

Red_Chili
08-15-2008, 02:48 PM
If it runs reasonably well and the price is fair, I wouldn't worry much. Having a 2-door 2nd gen 4Runner would be cool alone. So what if the engine goes, put in a 3.4L and have a super cool truck. If the engine is original with 186K and has had the HG recall done, it's probably good for a while more.
What he said. If that body style grabs you and you can get it for cheap. Likely good for a while.

Red_Chili
08-15-2008, 02:49 PM
Note to self: Watch Volcom with great enjoyment.


Do not follow him under any circumstances. :lmao:

cbmontgo
08-15-2008, 02:50 PM
Note to self: Watch Volcom with great enjoyment.


Do not follow him under any circumstances. :lmao:

Ha! That is funny.

I really do like the 2-door. I've only seen a few of them around, and this might be kinda cool. I'm going to talk to this guy and see if we can work a deal.

RockRunner
08-15-2008, 03:42 PM
I say go for it, you ca always fix/swap the motor down the road. I had the V6 in my 91 and hammered the thing for 112K when I sold it, never a problem. The two is cool and rare to find, if it is clean and rust free it is a great rig to use as a platform for future mods. The sky is the limit as long as the budget is there.

The motor is weak and mileage stinks but if it is a weekend toy?????????then it does not matter. Open the air intake and some headers/exhaust and you gained some power.

Go buy it and post some pics already!!!

ScaldedDog
08-15-2008, 10:27 PM
Hmmmm.

I just found a perfect condition 1990 2nd gen 2-door (rare) with a new head gasket, water pump, and timing belt replaced with 186,000 miles, no rust, and good maintenance history. Such a clean rig and runs great...but I am nervous about this motor from what I hear here. It is cool because it's so unusual, but...


BUY IT!!!! I've got 225K on my 3.0, with a rebuild 75K (and 10 years) ago. Just changed the timing belt and it's a bit of a pain, but not terrible. I wouldn't bother replacing the headgaskets if they go, though. As everyone else has said, that's what 3.4's are for.

Mark