The time has finally come to sell truck: 85 4RunnerAll original, minimal modifications to resolve known issues. $6,800. 148K with new OEM crate engine (not rebuilt) from Toyota. Have all recipts. -Sold for $6700. 5/1/2014 - Wish I still had it :(
85 Toyota 4Runner Web Site
There are many choices for an off-road vehicle. Here is how it came down to Toyota.
Land Rovers: Land Rovers are not for serious off-roading. They have the African safari look from movies. However, axels are weak, and they have been always status symbols since the beginning. SUVs since the beginning were considered weekend toys, so only the rich could afford them. Since the 60's they were status symbol in Britain. They are infamous for the un-reliability.
Mercedes G wagons are expensive. But they are not necessary tough.
Hummers: The H1 is good off-road, but too wide and too expensive. H2 is useless. H3 is suppose to be good off-roader, but too little too late. That brand went away by the time H3 came out.
Jeeps are great for off-road, but not very durable. They are generally reliable up to 100k miles, then things start to fall apart. World traveler will tell you that outside of US, you don't see many Jeeps. The market has spoken.
Fords have good full size trucks. They are too big and heavy for off-road. Forget the Ford Explorers. They were never meant to be used for off-roading. Their shock mounts hang too low. Low clearance.
GM don't have anything much in terms of serious off-road vehicles. Geo and Trackers are good for light trail use. They are suppose to be pretty tough. Full size trucks again are too heavy.
Nissan X-Terra is also a good choice besides Toyota, but with less aftermarket support.
Early 80's Toyota have several things going for them. They are light, which is very important in off-road. They are strong, and they have good fuel economy. They also have good aftermarket support.
As for effectiveness of Toyota trucks, consider this. Pretty much all the insurgents and warloards in Middle East and Africa ride around in Toyota trucks mounted with 50 caliber machine guns. The war between Chad and Libya in 1987 was called the Toyota War because Chad defeted Gaddafi largely thanks to the speed and durability of the trucks that can carry troops quickly to the front line in the desert. Interestingly, a Toyota truck is so effective for insurgency that is illegal for civilians to own one in Chad.
Unfortunately, by mid 1990, these trucks began to gain weight and size. The latest 4Runner is almost 1,000 lbs heavier than the 80's truck, and much larger. Even the Jeep Wrangler is more than 500 lbs heavier.
Picked the first generation (85'-88') 4Runner for several reasons. Economical to run. Large numberof items can be stored inside for security. Back is long enough and flat so that even a 6' person can sleep inside. Jeep Cherokee is too short for that. 1985 is the last year for solid axel suspension on both the front and rear. Live axel is typically more robustness and has high clearance. For 86' on a independent front suspension is used in the front. It trades off ride comfort and handling for off-road ability.
Goal for the truck is traveling and exploring rather than rock crawling. Modification cannot impact reliability when you are miles away. Want to minimize the chance of breaking down in the middle of no where. Purpose here is to keep the truck as close to stock as possible while enhencing performance just enough for moderately difficult trails. Manufacture has done extensive testing to ensure reliable operations. Extensive modifications may give the ultimate performance for rock crawling, but the more things that change, the more that can go wrong. I kept the changes to minimal, and with careful part selection.
Here are many of the things I learned.
Contact: Ben Lee, benmlee at yahoo dot com
|General 4X4 Topics|
Must Do Items
|22RE Engine Pages||
2nd Engine work: Blew Head Gasket Again. New Engine This Time Consider using Metal or Graphite Headgaket. OEM is still the safest.
79-86 Supras run a 7.5" LSD (clutch type) which will
fit in IFS fronts trucks
|Parts / Tools||
|Tricks, Tips Pages||
Oil Changing Tip:
Oil Changing Tip:
When changing oil on 22RE engine, change filter
first in the morning before starting engine. The warm up engine to
change oil. Give it time for oil to drain out of the filter overnight,
and not make a big mess. You are not going to "ruin" your
new filter just because some old oil ran thru it.
When changing oil on 22RE engine, change filter first in the morning before starting engine. The warm up engine to change oil. Give it time for oil to drain out of the filter overnight, and not make a big mess. You are not going to "ruin" your new filter just because some old oil ran thru it.
Bunch of Opinions
1985 Celica Links
(Also with 22RE engine)
Finally, bought a right (rear) wheel drive daily car. Other choice would be an BMW E30, but those are in demand. E46 would actually be easier to find, and drives better. E46 is the one Cadillac used to copy for the 2012 ATS. Still, for $2700, can't beat the Celica. Celica's significant for Toyota is the start of TRD and Toyota's involvement in motorsport in the US.
Swapping Limited Slip Differential into The Celica
Pretty much all Celicas in the US came with open differential. Is possible to swap in a differential from a different car that has LSD diff. Here are the different size differential that are used in the Toyota Celica, and what can be done:
82-85 Celica ST, GT = Solid 6.7"
82-86 Celica Supra = IRS 7.5"
Once you get the differential, you may want to rebuild the unit:
LSD Rebuild Reference:
Maxgrip Kit Installation Manual .pdf - Has good section on setting
Use aftermarket performance parts for higher grip here: Rebuild kit from WEIR performance. If you do use the WEIR performance kit, do not use their upgraded spring, is an overkill for street use. It will be too locked up. Note that the OEM 7.5" diff use only one clutch surface for locking, the WEIR kit will use multiple clutch surface, so just the clutch is already multiple times that of stock even without their stronger spring.
Breaking in a LSD.
LSD oil: Toyota recommends SAE 90 oil. Those are very hard to come
by. Amazon sells Motul 90PA Gear Oil #100122. Is a lot more trouble
to get that, but given that I found excessive wear in spider gears
of two old differentials, is worth it. Most stores sell 75W80 or 80W90.
Using those can cause increase in gear noise.
Rear bearing replacement.
Lipo Battery: EarthX Motorsports
KTM 350 EXC-F Prep.
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