cbechtold's Long Travel IFS Crawler Tacoma Build

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Apr 17, 2019
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Today was a pretty big day for me. Front end is pretty much done at this point outside of a few minor details. That being said, I am beyond stoke to finally have the front back on the ground today.


PXL_20220617_212750259.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

She's gonna look mean once done. Definitely sitting very high right now, but with no motor and suspension isn't broken in yet, she's definitely got a bro lean going on right now. :rofl:

Outside that, I was also able to run the front diff breather line and got it as high as I could.


PXL_20220617_192615373.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Also got some new edge trimming for the fenders. These have some sheet metal inside them so these should stay on the fender compared to the last one I used.


PXL_20220617_192310739.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

And with that behind us, now I'm turning my attention to the rear suspension and axle swap now.


PXL_20220617_231628849.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

I'm getting pretty motivated so here's hoping I can knock this section of the build out in some decent time. I'm definitely ready to enjoy a little bit of wheeling and camping if I can get the truck broken-in in time.
 
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Bozeman, MT
Awesome photos as always! I'm sure you've mentioned it before, but is this your first off road vehicle build? Your work's just so clean and it's clear you have the mindset of just doing it one time and doing it the right way. Those fender cuts are so well done. I'm antsy to see it in action, I can't imagine how you feel! Keep up the badass work.
 
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Messages
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Awesome photos as always! I'm sure you've mentioned it before, but is this your first off road vehicle build? Your work's just so clean and it's clear you have the mindset of just doing it one time and doing it the right way. Those fender cuts are so well done. I'm antsy to see it in action, I can't imagine how you feel! Keep up the badass work.

Appreciate the kind words man! This is my first off road vehicle build. I "had" a 1971 FJ40 as my first car that my dad and I built, but it was my first car and I'm pretty sure it was my dad's excuse to buy one. :rofl:

Definitely I've taken after the build it once build it right mentality. I've hung out with a couple fabricators over time so I kinda like to copy their habits and quality. I also don't like redoing shit over and over again. That being said, I'll probably 4 link the truck in a few years and throw 37s on it which means redoing the rear suspension again and redoing the tub on the cab again. :smash: Oh well. All part of the fun of building a rig.
 
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Rear axle swap is in full swing, and the rear suspension update is at a stand still for a little bit. I'll explain in a bit.

While I'm not swapping out the leaf pack, I am putting longer shackles on the truck. The rear will sit about an extra inch taller and interior help level out the truck with LT up front.


PXL_20220619_181127825.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Had to cut the old shackles out, but these new ones are definitely beefier compared to stock.

Here's ride height and full droop with only axle weight. Full droop is probably a little more than what I will actually have since I'll be prioritizing up travel this time around.


PXL_20220619_182758623.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220619_182834378.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Out with the old...


PXL_20220619_195045903 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220619_200321977 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

And full pause on mounting up the rear axle. Unfortunately I didn't think to measure the rear axle tubes on the Sequioa axle, and it turns out that the Tacoma u-bolt flip kit I bought from RuffStuff didn't fit at all. Silly mistake as well, but I did order the u-bolt flip kit before I got the axle. I do already have 3 1/4" u-bolts on order, so hopefully next weekend I can get the axle set and the pinion angle set.


PXL_20220619_221843019 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

As for the rest of the time I spent on the truck, I cut my bedsides back to match the front fenders. This did include having to cut the gas tank door, which sucked, and I dropped the angle grinder on it and it left a good dent.


PXL_20220620_183016249.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220620_183053372.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220620_183119972.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220620_204516884.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220620_225500953.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Overall, not too bad. Once I get the truck out of the garage I'll be able to tell how good or bad the cuts are, but the passenger side is looking pretty good. While I think the cuts are going to look a little bit ridiculous on 35s, it's the only way I can do it without just leaving the holes for the fender flare clips. Either way, I'm digging the no fender flare look right now. Hopefully the new u-bolts arrive this week and I can work on getting the Sequoia axle set in place.

I'll end this with an update on my motor. I dropped off everything my builder needs to finish rebuilding my motor. While I won't be seeing my motor for a little bit longer, I know that next month I will have my motor back as a long block. As of right now, my dad and I are aiming for August to have the truck out of the garage and, this might be pushing it a little, possibly at Marlin Crawler Round-Up this year. MCR is definitely pushing it since I need to break in everything and test it before I run the Rubicon. Doable? Yes, but it's going to be close.
 
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Well RuffStuff delivered the goods before the weekend so here are some progress updates for the rear. Got the rear axle centered and pinion angle is set. Spring perches are tacked in place for now.


PXL_20220626_164438366.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Also had some leftover time to pull the leaf packs apart and start getting ready to build bump stops and shock mounts. This is roughly what I'm looking at for full bump.


PXL_20220626_224438172.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

And for good measure, I pulled the tire back on and flexed out the suspension. With the way the fender is cut it definitely looks a little silly, but I guess I'll just need bigger shoes to fit eventually. Also gives me a pretty good idea for what I'd like to see when I eventually get to doing a final version of the rear suspension. Definitely more uptravel, but maybe a little bit more down as well.


PXL_20220626_225402432.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220626_225432569.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

I have a rough idea in my head for what I want things to look like when it comes to building everything for the shock hoops and bump mounts and pad. Don't know if it'll look good, but I guess I'll find out soon enough.
 
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Been a minute. Engine is basically 90% done at this point. All the new new parts are installed and I'm basically ready to fire her up here shortly. Still have a few minor things to get around to as well as the heater core to do, but that's going to be a couple days to get done.



PXL_20220911_232450002 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

I've got a vacation from work coming up here, so I'll be putting all my focus into the rear suspension. The goal is to have everything fab'd up so I can paint and work on the heater core while I watch paint dry.
 
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Alright! Here we go with the rear suspension. I know the rear suspension is temporary, so I don't see myself doing much to the rear outside of adding bump stops, limit straps, and proper valving. First order of business was relocating the stock to outside of the frame for greater stability.


PXL_20220916_233955100.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Later I knocked off the factory bump stop strike pads and made some upper shock mounts. Lowers are from RuffStuff. This is currently what full bump and full droop look like.


PXL_20220919_224131993.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20220919_230350505.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

I'm currently 50/50 right now with the current placement of the lower shock mounts. I didn't have time to articulate the suspension, so that's what I'll be getting to next weekend. One the shock placement is finalized, I'll work on bump stops.
 

Alex Fleming

Owner at Sherpa Equipment Co.
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Shock towers look awesome, don't make the mistake we made early on and add some interal bracing behind the towers so they dont try and bend inwards over time and start twisting the frame. A crossover tube would be ideal but we have managed without one.
 

4runner DOA

Hold my beer
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Shock towers look awesome, don't make the mistake we made early on and add some interal bracing behind the towers so they dont try and bend inwards over time and start twisting the frame. A crossover tube would be ideal but we have managed without one.

Are you guys running a crossover tube now? I might have to swing out to Pomona this weekend and check out the rig.
 

Stairgod

Two bad decisions away from buying a bulldozer
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Shock towers look awesome, don't make the mistake we made early on and add some interal bracing behind the towers so they dont try and bend inwards over time and start twisting the frame. A crossover tube would be ideal but we have managed without one.
Leverage kills
 
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Shock towers look awesome, don't make the mistake we made early on and add some interal bracing behind the towers so they dont try and bend inwards over time and start twisting the frame. A crossover tube would be ideal but we have managed without one.

Been considering that actually, but I knew someone who actually didn't use a brace on his rig for quite sometime. I'm sure no brace would be fine for a few years until I get bored and 4 link the rear.

Leverage kills

Facts.
 
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PXL_20221025_213147617 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

I guess it's time to update this thread again since I've actually made progress on the truck. Rear suspension is done with all the mock up and it's ready to get burnt together this weekend. Still a few minor details I need to work out, but I'm ready for everything to start coming together for the end result.

Rear limit straps to help protect the shocks.


PXL_20221017_212959796.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Brake lines came out okay. Not to happy with the long run on the axle so I might remake that before final assembly. Also need to order some DOT legal brake lines.


PXL_20221017_212852856.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20221025_210714878 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Added a proportioning valve for the rear to help fine tune braking. Decided to put it under the hood to help keep it as clean as possible.


PXL_20221025_225250082.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

And that brings us to yesterday were she's all torn down again and ready to get welded together. I'm ready to see her out of the garage and moving again. I plan on getting the heater core done while I'm getting everything painted and ready for final assembly. Once that's done, it's put the rear back together add fluids, connect the battery, and go... in theory lol


PXL_20221026_015049168 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

The goal is end of November to be running and driving. I think it's doable, but that's also assuming that nothing causes a delay.
 
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Today marks a pretty big milestone in this rebuild. For the first time in 9 months, the truck is back on all 4 tires. Pretty freaking stoke with how the truck is looking now. Rear suspension is pretty much perfect for what I want with OEM leaf spring geometry. Here's hoping that I can get it tuned to work as well as I'd like.


PXL_20221108_032055816 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20221108_031235768.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20221108_032135051 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

While also working on the rear end, I was able to get a new heater core in the truck while waiting for paint to dry. T'was a huge PITA!


PXL_20221107_012314343 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Lockers are also plumbed and tested. No leaks anywhere. Also installed a new higher rated pressure switch on the compressor.


PXL_20221108_032921798.PORTRAIT by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr


PXL_20221102_013327598 by Cory Bechtold, on Flickr

Not as many photos of the rear as I would like, but I was definitely just pushing to get the truck back on the ground the last few days.

At this point, there's honestly not a whole lot to do anymore. Outside of accessory belts on the motor, all the fluids, filters, and pick up and install my rear driveshaft, she's pretty damn close to being a functionally vehicle again.
 
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