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Murph's 4Runner Build & Off Road Thread

Discussion in '3rd Gen Builds (1996-2002)' started by Murph, Apr 17, 2014.

  1. Apr 17, 2014 at 8:54 PM
    #1
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Murph's 2001 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4WD - 6 Passenger

    In the fall of 2012, I was inspired by @fjatheart to buy an off road capable rig. He had an FJ40 that he wheeled and an 01 4Runner that he was planning to build into a trail capable daily driver. After searching many FJ80s and 4Runners, I purchased this 2001 4Runner Limited on October 27, 2012. It was completely stock except for a TRD cat-back exhaust, K&N air intake, and an aftermarket Stereo/CD/DVD player with 12" subs and amps. I started modding it just days after I brought it home.

    Most current photo (April 2014):
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    What it looked like the day I bought it:
    [​IMG]

    Suspension:
    Front - Old Man Emu 883 coils with OME 9004 shocks
    Rear - OME 891 coils with Bilstein 5100 Tundra shocks (part# 24-100144)
    SPC Light Racing UCAs
    Toytec Diff Drop
    Rear swaybar removed (destroyed the driver's side mount twice, so I'm done with it!)

    Armor:
    Shrockworks Front Winch Bumper with Full Hoops
    Stubbs Welding HD-SKO Sliders
    Budbuilt Front Skid and Belly Pan Skid

    Tires & Wheels:
    265/75R16 Cooper Discoverer STT tires
    Stock 16" Limited wheels (minus center caps)
    Matching spare

    Powertrain & Steering:
    Stock 3.4L V6
    Stock air intake with ISR Mod (Intake Silencer Removal)
    TRD cat-back exhaust
    Safari-LTD Steering Gear (11/06/2013)
    Stock Open Diffs (front & rear)
    Genuine Toyota Front Wheel Bearings
    Genuine Toyota CV Boots on original Axles
    Denso A/F sensor (10/31/12)
    Plugs & Wires (11/4/12)
    Denso Radiator (10/1/2013)

    Exterior:
    PIAA 510 fog lights in front bumper
    4' Wilson CB antenna on front bumper
    PlastiDip rear badges
    Pinstripes by the trails of Tennessee

    Interior:
    6th seat in cargo area (2nd gen front bucket w/ 3rd gen rear 3-pt seat belt)
    Cobra 19 DXVI installed in place of ashtray
    Constant 12V plugs (console and rear)
    Weathertech Floormats
    BlueSea USB port
    Fire Extinguisher

    Recovery Gear:
    Superwinch Talon 9.5SR with Viking Amsteel Blue Synthetic Rope
    Factor55 ProLink winch thimble
    Superwinch roller fairlead
    CO2 onboard air tank
    Hi-Lift jack with roof rack mount
    Various straps, shackles and other gear

    Things to come:
    CBI (or homemade) rear bumper with Tire Carrier
    Rear Air Locker (likely ARB)
    Whitson Metal Works Roof Rack
    Modular drawer system
    Vintage Coleman Cooler (that will be installed on rear bumper carrier)
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2014
    Bob likes this.
  2. Apr 17, 2014 at 8:56 PM
    #2
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Because I didn't actually keep up with a build thread since I bought the 4Runner, a lot of this will be a look back at what was done. It'll take some time for me to catch up. I'll be including not only mods and maintenance stuff, but there will be some off-roading pictures thrown in too.

    I hope y'all enjoy.

    Murph
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014
  3. Apr 18, 2014 at 3:04 PM
    #3
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The first mod was removing the running boards… "instant lift". Maybe not, but it did make it look better.
    Before:
    [​IMG]
    After:
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Apr 18, 2014 at 3:18 PM
    #4
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    On the drive home, the check engine light came on. After checking the codes, I determined that I needed to replace the pre-cat A/F ratio sensor. I ordered a Denso (part #234-9002) from Amazon for much cheaper than anywhere else. Of course, it was an easy plug and play install.

    New sensor with gasket:
    [​IMG]

    Old sensor:
    [​IMG]

    New sensor installed:
    [​IMG]

    The CEL codes also indicated a misfire on two of the cylinders.

    This is why:
    [​IMG]

    I installed new NGK plug wires and spark plugs.

    Pretty Blue Wires:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2014
  5. Apr 18, 2014 at 3:28 PM
    #5
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    I learned that PlastiDip wasn't just for tool handles. Dipped the emblems and tag surround

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Finished:
    [​IMG]

    I also PlastiDipped the grille:
    [​IMG]
     
  6. Apr 18, 2014 at 3:47 PM
    #6
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    I ordered 5 Cooper Discoverer STT tires (265/75R16) from Discount Tire. It's beginning to look like a true off-road vehicle.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (11/28/12)
     
  7. Apr 19, 2014 at 12:41 PM
    #7
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The day after I bought my tires, I received my Old Man Emu 883/891 lift with OME 9004/60027 shocks from Toytec.

    [​IMG]

    I paid the extra money to have Toytec assemble the front shocks/coils. I loved the "running man" hieroglyphics that they added. A special touch.

    [​IMG]

    (11/29/12)
     
  8. Apr 19, 2014 at 12:45 PM
    #8
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    On 12/06/12, the UPS man brought these all the way from Susanville, CA.

    Stubbs Welding HD-SKO sliders…

    [​IMG]

    I took them out to the garage and "mocked them up".

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Apr 19, 2014 at 1:05 PM
    #9
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Finally getting to the stuff everyone wants to see….

    On 12/8/12, @fjatheart and I filled the day by installing the OME lifts on both of our 4Runners. That was a LONG day!

    Before...
    [​IMG]

    Front going on…
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Rear going in:
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    The money shot…
    [​IMG]

    And a couple of after lift poser shots…

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (12/08/12)
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2014
  10. Apr 19, 2014 at 1:19 PM
    #10
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Once my lift was on, it was time to get working on the sliders and having them installed. Over the next few days, I primed and painted them. One thing that I do regret is using the white "bare metal" primer. I found out quickly that when the topcoat gets scratched, the white shows through like a sore thumb.

    These Stubbs HD-SKO sliders are great looking and very strong. I liked the fact that the legs came pre-welded. If I could go back and do it again, I would have had Richard weld in some gussets between the legs and mounting plates for a little extra rigidity and strength. Since I don't have a welder of my own, I had Essentially Off Road of Murfreesboro, TN weld them on.

    Primer...
    [​IMG]

    Paint...
    [​IMG]

    Mounting by EOR…
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    (Installed 12/20/12)
     
  11. Apr 19, 2014 at 3:03 PM
    #11
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    For Christmas of 2012 I got a Motorola 19 DXVI CB to be able to use on trail rides. I ordered an 18' Wilson antenna cable, a Wilson Flex-4 antenna and a FireStik stud mount. I built an antenna mount that attached under the left taillight. I eventually sold that mount and ordered an ODL mount which are no longer available.

    [​IMG]

    I installed the CB in the dash in place of the ashtray. I created a how-to thread here… Install Cobra 19 CB in place of ashtray - 3rd Gen

    That was a fun and useful install that created an OEM look for the CB.

    I also performed the constant 12V power outlet mod. It allows you to use 3 of the power outlets (lower 2 in center console & the one in the cargo area) even if the ignition is turned off.
    Here's the link to the how-to:
    Constant 12V power outlet

    [​IMG]

    Here is the mount that I built out of scrap metal that was in my garage.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    (12/30/12 - 01/3/13)
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  12. Apr 19, 2014 at 3:33 PM
    #12
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    First trail ride…

    Derek (TNRunner99 over on "another forum") and I went up to Windrock Park/Coal Creek OHV on a Saturday for a little trail ride. Since it was in early January, there was ice covering all of the water and waterfalls (not something we see a lot of down South). That ice was the result of my first trail damage. I took another friend and my oldest son along with us and we had a great time. Here are some of the pictures (not the greatest quality)…

    Beautiful Tennessee Sunrise on the way that morning…
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A sheet of ice on top of one of the water holes gave me my first trail damage… busted both blinkers and smashed my "TBL" plate.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Instagram shot:
    [​IMG]

    (01/05/13)
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2014
    Bob likes this.
  13. Apr 19, 2014 at 5:31 PM
    #13
    Ol'Blue

    Ol'Blue Moderator Staff Member

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    "Not all who wander are lost"
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    99 T4R LTD- 33's and locked, 01 SR5-,SAS Sold...
    A few things here and there. Still dreaming up stuff
    Nice work!

    Blue
     
  14. Apr 19, 2014 at 5:41 PM
    #14
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Thanks, Blue! There's more pics to come. This is taking much longer than I anticipated!

    Murph
     
  15. Apr 20, 2014 at 12:14 PM
    #15
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    After about a month and a half of driving with the 4Runner lifted, I started smelling some grease coming from the front end.

    I looked under the truck and found this on the driver's side inner fender and frame.
    [​IMG]

    At first, I thought maybe it was coming from the brake line. But then I found this…
    [​IMG]

    The inner CV boots were leaking on both sides. The driver's side was worst. I went ahead and rebooted both CV axles. It was a very time consuming and messy job, but not too difficult. The hardest part was finding that sweet spot to "pop" the axle out of the front differential.

    Several items I bought from Lowe Toyota in Warner Robins, GA for the 4Runner. The new CV boots are in there somewhere.
    [​IMG]

    Sorry… No pictures of the actual job being done. My hands were too greasy to handle the camera or iPhone.

    (02/15/2013)
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2016
  16. Apr 20, 2014 at 12:31 PM
    #16
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The box in that last post contained a few other parts that I used for some small projects over the next couple of months.

    I decided to give the 4Runner a retro OEM look with the FJ40 "4 wheel drive" badge.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I extended the rear diff breather…
    [​IMG]

    Many people push the breather through the gasket around the gas filler neck. I chose to run it up behind but not through that gasket.
    [​IMG]

    I cleaned and painted my drums and hubs to give the 4Runner a cleaner look…
    [​IMG]

    And, since my hubs were clean and black, I decided to show them off by removing the center caps from my wheels. I like the utilitarian look of it.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    I found this Uhaul tube style trailer hitch on Craigslist to replace my OEM hitch. It tucked up under the 4Runner a little better than the stock hitch offering a touch more of a departure angle. I ended up giving my OEM hitch to @fjatheart. He used it until he bought a replacement rear bumper with a built in hitch.
    [​IMG]

    (Feb & March 2013)
     
  17. Apr 21, 2014 at 7:19 PM
    #17
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The Old Man Emu lift that I installed on the 4Runner was the "Heavy" lift that included the 891 coils and 60027 shocks in the rear intended for 4Runners with extra weight in the back. Since I didn't have a heavier aftermarket bumper or a drawer system in the back, the ride was a little rough and jarring. Trying to remedy that problem, I tried a couple of different solutions. In March of 2013, I found a good deal on a set of front coils from a 1997 FJ80 to use on the rear of the 4runner. I purchased them and installed them keeping the OME 60027 shocks. The FJ80 coils were 7.5/8 wrap coils and gave at least 1-1/2" to 2" more lift than the OME 891 coils.

    This picture shows the unloaded height difference between the LC80 coil and the OME 891.
    [​IMG]

    The FJ80 coils lifted the rear even higher and created a lot of rake with the OME 883s in the front.
    [​IMG]

    I rode around with this setup for a couple of weeks. At first, I didn't mind the rake. But, after awhile I decided I would prefer it be closer to level. Obviously the FJ80 coils offered a ton of flex, but the ride was still pretty rough. After more research and learning more and more about how coils and shocks work, I determined that the harsh ride wasn't because of the coils. I decided to try a different set of shocks. I ordered some Bilstein 5100 shocks that were built for the rear of a Tundra with 0 - 2" of lift. Bilstein part #24-100144. These were a near direct bolt-on for the 4Runner. The shocks came with a vulcanized bushing that did not fit the lower shock mount of the 4R. I pressed out the vulcanized bushing and pressed in a Daystar bushing that would fit the 4R's lower mount.

    The new shocks…
    [​IMG]

    and installed…
    [​IMG]

    Since I was starting to not like the rake of the FJ80 coils, I went ahead and re-installed the OME 891s.

    I have kept this setup since then and have been pleased with the ride quality. Whenever I end up putting a replacement rear bumper/tire carrier on, I will probably want to go back to a heavier shock such as the OME 60027.

    (03/22/13)
     
  18. Apr 21, 2014 at 7:22 PM
    #18
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The next trail ride was coming up, so I picked up a couple of "just in case" accessories.

    Recovery…
    [​IMG]

    and Safety…
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Apr 21, 2014 at 7:59 PM
    #19
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    In March of 2013, I had my first chance to go on a trail ride at Coppinger Cove near Chattanooga, TN. I had heard some great things about riding there and was excited to be able to go.

    We met up with a great group of guys including two FJ40s, two 4Runners, two Wranglers and a Chevy LUV. Yes, a nearly stock Chevy LUV!

    Enjoy the pictures…

    Met for breakfast and getting ready to head out.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This is an old block building church that holds a service once a month for the "locals".
    [​IMG]

    This is Brian and his Chevy LUV. He taught us that LUV stands for Light Utility Vehicle.
    [​IMG]

    Two of my favorite trail buddies. And @fjatheart's T4R in the background.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    One of many caves in this area. The opening was over 50 ft high.
    [​IMG]

    From the inside out…
    [​IMG]

    @FJatheart…
    [​IMG]

    The Cove is full of God's beauty…
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    One of the many creek crossings…
    [​IMG]

    Look at that flex…
    [​IMG]

    The kids enjoyed playing in the rocks as much as we did…
    [​IMG]

    (March 23, 2013)
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  20. Apr 21, 2014 at 10:40 PM
    #20
    AlphaEcho2k5

    AlphaEcho2k5 New Member

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    Great pics!
     
  21. Apr 22, 2014 at 4:56 AM
    #21
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Thank you, AE. I enjoy being the trail photographer. Unfortunately that means that most of the pictures of my 4R are non-action shots.
     
  22. Apr 22, 2014 at 7:57 PM
    #22
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Adding a couple of videos from that last trail ride at Coppinger Cove.

    This is a fun little movie trailer that I created with iMovie using several clips that were taken on that trip.

     
  23. Apr 22, 2014 at 7:59 PM
    #23
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    The trail went into a creek around a corner and back up the other side. Come to find out it was a rocky bottom creek that wasn't quite as deep as we thought. We could have taken our time with it and not worried about getting stuck. You live and learn.

     
  24. Apr 22, 2014 at 8:00 PM
    #24
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    This was one of the long uphill climbs that was less rocky than most. A good break from the bouncing and jouncing of the cobblestone creek beds.

     
  25. Apr 22, 2014 at 8:01 PM
    #25
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    One more clip:

     
  26. Apr 23, 2014 at 12:13 AM
    #26
    Stuck CAPS

    Stuck CAPS New Member

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    ARB Bumper, Some Stuff, Some Other Stuff, and some Stuff.
    Beautiful truck! And the thread even comes with videos! Can't beat it! Could you post up some pics of the 6th seat?
     
  27. Apr 23, 2014 at 3:36 AM
    #27
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Thank you! The 6th seat pictures will be up soon. I started building the truck in November 2012, but just recently started documenting it in a build thread. It's taking some time to get caught up, but I'm almost there.
     
  28. Apr 23, 2014 at 6:29 AM
    #28
    Stuck CAPS

    Stuck CAPS New Member

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    ARB Bumper, Some Stuff, Some Other Stuff, and some Stuff.
    You'll get caught up! I started doc's early, so if I do ever get around to my 4x4 conversion I can start a nice, proper looking build thread with write up! (But pics is always such a hassle :/)
     
  29. Apr 23, 2014 at 11:38 AM
    #29
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    Thankfully I have all of my photos organized. And I like taking pictures when I mod, maintain and ride. So, that won't slow me down. It is actually helping me remember what I did and (thanks to EXIF data) when I did it. Give it a week, I'll be all caught up and looking for more to post. :)
     
  30. Apr 28, 2014 at 5:44 PM
    #30
    Murph

    Murph [OP] New Member

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    This is one of my good friends and wrenching partner, @fjatheart (Trae). He and I help each other as much as we can not only with wrenching on the 4Runners, but also in just living life.

    Here, we were working on installing new steering knuckles on his 2001 T4R.
    [​IMG]
     
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