The Blackflags Build Thread

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#1
Recent Pictures:
IMG_0120
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_9211
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_9155
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
Current Upgrades/Modifications:
Drivetrain /Engine/Performance
• K&N air filter (removed)
• AFE air filter
• Isr mod
• Dynomax super turbo 20 inch muffler
• Transgo shift kit and glow shift trans temp gauge (Write up available Here)
• B&M 70268 Trans cooler with auxiliary fan
• Custom poly transmission mount
• Extended rear diff breather
• 2 low mod
• Rear: Nitro 4.30s with ARB RD132 air locker (built by ECGS)
• Front: Junkyard 4.30 diff
Suspension
Front:
• Toytec bilstein/eibach coilovers (removed)
• King extended travel coilovers with 600 lb springs
• SPC upper control arms
• Removed front sway bar
• 10 inch limit straps, (SS mount with synergy clevis and poly performance strap.)
• New OEM lower ball joints
• New 2001 OEM rack
• Total Chaos spindle gussets
• Whiteline lower control arm bushings
• Polyurethane rack bushings
Rear:
• OME 891 coils
• OME 906 coils with trim packer (removed)
• 4th gen rancho rs5000 shocks (removed)
• 2”x10” King prerunner series with remote resi and compression adjuster on custom mounts
• 2 inch extended rear bump stops
• Removed rear sway bar
• 1.75” Panhard bar lift bracket
Wheels and Tires
• SCS Ray 10s in Matte Gray
• 285/75/16 Falken Wildpeak AT3W
Lighting/Electrical:
• 4300k FXR 3 inch 35W hid retrofit
• LED driving lights’
• 21in 100W LED light bar
• Led taillights
• Full led conversion in cab and exterior lights
• External thermometer
• ABS disable/reset switch
• Big 3 mod
• Blue sea systems 12 circuit fuseblock with ignition relay and acrylic platform
• 400 watt power inverter (mounted under drivers seat)
• Duralast Platinum H8 AGM battery
Interior
• 20% 3M Color Stable tint on front windows
• Sound deadening done with peel n seal and carpet padding throughout doors and floor
• 550 cord steering wheel wrap
• Custom cargo drawers
• Weathertech front floor liners
Stereo/ Communication
• Cobra CB
• Upgraded sound system
Exterior /Armor
• 3M Clear Bra
• 3M 1080 anthracite carbon fiber vinyl on b pillars, gas tank lid, and rear spoiler
• Monstaliner medium quartz grey fender flares
• 4X innovations sliders with custom mount
• Tow hitch skid
• Custom front bumper (powder coated hammered black)
• Custom rear bumper (powder coated hammered black)
• Custom tire swingout (painted with rustoleum professional gloss enamel)
Recovery
• 3in x 30ft Rugged Ridge tow strap
• 2in x 20ft Smittybilt tow strap
• 2 3/8in x 30ft ARB snatch strap
• 2in x 3ft tree saver
• x4 3/4in d rings
• x2 d ring hitch adapters
• 60in HiLift jack
• ARB ckma12 OBA setup
• ARB EZ deflator
• Rebuilt Smittybilt XRC12 winch with synthetic line terminated with a factor 55 flatlink
• Tuff Stuff 10 ton snatch block
• Tuff Stuff Wireless winch controller
• Fire extinguisher
Trails completed
Montana
• Flathead Pass
• Brackett Creek and various other forest service roads
• North Meadow Creek
• Independence Pass
• Ringing Rocks
• Elkhorn Mine
Colorado
• Barbour Fork
• Yankee Hill
• Wheeler Lake
• Coney Flats
• Middle St. Vrain
Utah
• Fins n Things
• Hells Revenge (including Hells Gate)
• Top of the World
• Poison Spider Mesa
• Gold Bar Rim
• 7 Mile Rim
• Gemini Bridges
Future Plans
• Roof rack
• Full LED auxiliary lighting overhaul
• Regear to 4.88 with front locker
• Tundra brake upgrade
• Custom turbo kit
 
Last edited:

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#7
Already made a thread for it here but I finally knocked out the rear 3 link. Truck drives loads better.

Old trashed joint
IMAG0562
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

Some new beef
IMAG0562
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_20181006_183029_173
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_20180903_200451_571~2
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0159
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0163
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0168
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0167
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMAG0582
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
 

Plastics Guy

You love my bumps, My bumps, My lovely Yota Bumps!
Official Vendor
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
263
Age
36
Location
az
#8
Those reinforcements look killer on the upper link tabs. I should go through my axle while its still straight and gusset everything up while its still easy!!
 

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#9
Those reinforcements look killer on the upper link tabs. I should go through my axle while its still straight and gusset everything up while its still easy!!
It's definitely worthwhile to do, the one thing to be careful with is warping the housing. The 3rd gen housing are notorious for bending and warping super easy, part of the reason I will be having a full float ruff stuff housing built for this truck in the next couple of years, but all the welds I did on the main housing itself I did an inch at a time letting it fully cool in between welding and I moved around a lot. I'm sure it still tweaked it a little but without a jig table, it's the best I could do.

Heres the housing I am looking at. It will also utilize minitruck hubs to make it a full floater and will allow me to run 60 series rear disk brakes.
https://www.ruffstuffspecialties.com/catalog/TOY8.html
 

Hank

Sarcastic asshole
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
501
Location
SF Valley CA / Park City UT
#11
It's definitely worthwhile to do, the one thing to be careful with is warping the housing. The 3rd gen housing are notorious for bending and warping super easy, part of the reason I will be having a full float ruff stuff housing built for this truck in the next couple of years, but all the welds I did on the main housing itself I did an inch at a time letting it fully cool in between welding and I moved around a lot. I'm sure it still tweaked it a little but without a jig table, it's the best I could do.

Heres the housing I am looking at. It will also utilize minitruck hubs to make it a full floater and will allow me to run 60 series rear disk brakes.
https://www.ruffstuffspecialties.com/catalog/TOY8.html
If you are going to go through all the effort of changing out the axle housing and going full floater, you might as well go one step further and swap out the 3rd member from the unreliable toyota 8" Ring and pinion for a ford 9" 3rd member.
 

Plastics Guy

You love my bumps, My bumps, My lovely Yota Bumps!
Official Vendor
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
263
Age
36
Location
az
#12
It's definitely worthwhile to do, the one thing to be careful with is warping the housing. The 3rd gen housing are notorious for bending and warping super easy, part of the reason I will be having a full float ruff stuff housing built for this truck in the next couple of years, but all the welds I did on the main housing itself I did an inch at a time letting it fully cool in between welding and I moved around a lot. I'm sure it still tweaked it a little but without a jig table, it's the best I could do.

Heres the housing I am looking at. It will also utilize minitruck hubs to make it a full floater and will allow me to run 60 series rear disk brakes.
https://www.ruffstuffspecialties.com/catalog/TOY8.html

That is a nice housing and with the full floater, added strength and ability to run 60 series rear disk's its a huge upgrade.
 

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#13
If you are going to go through all the effort of changing out the axle housing and going full floater, you might as well go one step further and swap out the 3rd member from the unreliable toyota 8" Ring and pinion for a ford 9" 3rd member.
Ford 9 inch is still semi float though. I've thought about swapping in a land cruiser 9.5 to keep matching gear ratios. Problem is I've already spent the money building up the 8 inch with an airlocker and all the solid spacers and soon to be 5.29s. Plus the 9.5 kills ground clearance. I feel like since I'm only ever going to put 35s on the 8 inch will hold up reliably enough. Plus I bought it from ECGS so it has a 5 year warranty. The majority of the failures I see too are also on either stock or elocker carriers. I think this is because the carrier is much thinner than the arb and allows the ring gear to deflect more inevitably chipping the teeth.

You can see the arb carrier is almost twice as thick as the stock carrier and gives way more support to the ring gear
IMG_6498
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

That is a nice housing and with the full floater, added strength and ability to run 60 series rear disk's its a huge upgrade.
It will be about as strong as I can make it without putting in a larger diff
 

Hank

Sarcastic asshole
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
501
Location
SF Valley CA / Park City UT
#14
Ford 9 inch is still semi float though. I've thought about swapping in a land cruiser 9.5 to keep matching gear ratios. Problem is I've already spent the money building up the 8 inch with an airlocker and all the solid spacers and soon to be 5.29s. Plus the 9.5 kills ground clearance. I feel like since I'm only ever going to put 35s on the 8 inch will hold up reliably enough. Plus I bought it from ECGS so it has a 5 year warranty. The majority of the failures I see too are also on either stock or elocker carriers. I think this is because the carrier is much thinner than the arb and allows the ring gear to deflect more inevitably chipping the teeth.

You can see the arb carrier is almost twice as thick as the stock carrier and gives way more support to the ring gear
IMG_6498
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr


It will be about as strong as I can make it without putting in a larger diff
You can get a Ford 9" with full float. East Coast Gear Supply has a complete assembly and so does Currie. This is what I am going to be doing when I 4 link my rear axle. Either a f9 or a HP 70 from Currie.

The ARB certainly is a thicker gear and may be just fine. I've just seen too many blow out on the trails either with the elock or arb, and stock gears, and regeared ones. It just seems to me like if you are going to go to all the effort to build a full floater, you might as well swap out the last unreliable part, the 8" r&p for one that you will never have to worry about. I know you've already spend the money on the ARB and the Gears but that can be resold to help cover the expense of setting up a new 3rd member that you will never have to worry about. Later on down the road if you realized that the 8" can't keep up, then it's going to be a lot more money spent to get an new rear axle set up for a larger R&P because you'll have to set up a whole new housing again.

Just my thoughts of if you are going to go through and build a full float axle you might as well match it up with a strong R&P center section and never worry about it again. The 8" turns into a "consumable" part when you go to 35's. we are all swapping our ring and pinions after 30-35K miles - if they last that long.
 

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#15
You can get a Ford 9" with full float. East Coast Gear Supply has a complete assembly and so does Currie. This is what I am going to be doing when I 4 link my rear axle. Either a f9 or a HP 70 from Currie.

The ARB certainly is a thicker gear and may be just fine. I've just seen too many blow out on the trails either with the elock or arb, and stock gears, and regeared ones. It just seems to me like if you are going to go to all the effort to build a full floater, you might as well swap out the last unreliable part, the 8" r&p for one that you will never have to worry about. I know you've already spend the money on the ARB and the Gears but that can be resold to help cover the expense of setting up a new 3rd member that you will never have to worry about. Later on down the road if you realized that the 8" can't keep up, then it's going to be a lot more money spent to get an new rear axle set up for a larger R&P because you'll have to set up a whole new housing again.

Just my thoughts of if you are going to go through and build a full float axle you might as well match it up with a strong R&P center section and never worry about it again. The 8" turns into a "consumable" part when you go to 35's. we are all swapping our ring and pinions after 30-35K miles - if they last that long.
@Hank you make a lot of good points there and I really cant argue against the strength of a different diff. The engineer in me and my "build it up as strong as possible" motto would love to do that. For me the problem is the price difference, yes having a fully built currie f9, rock jock 60, or equivalent would be great and I would never have to worry about a diff blowing, but I did some research and all said and done I would be looking at well north of 5 grand just to build the axle. Thats not accounting for all the other little things that would add up pretty quickly as well and I just can't justify that. Whereas the full float ruff stuff housing and everything would put me in the neighboorhood of 2 grand. That's a much better price to stomach. Is it the strongest I can get? by far no. But I've never seen an 8-inch diff blow with the arb carrier, every single R&P failure I've seen has been on either a Toyota e locker case or open diff case. I think that's because of how thin the mounting surface is on the Toyota cases and under heavy torque or shock load it deflects causing the gears to unseat from each other enough to be riding on the tip of the tooth and then break. If you look at most of the failures they arent the whole tooth shearing off, its only like 50% of the tooth. I honestly think with 35s and knowing the limits of the truck I will be able to get the diff to hold together fine. A lot of it is setup as well, the Toyota diffs seem to be incredibly picky in that regard compared to the dana, sterling, or corporate axles that seem like you can just slam gears in and they will work fine.
 

Hank

Sarcastic asshole
Joined
Oct 3, 2018
Messages
501
Location
SF Valley CA / Park City UT
#16
@Hank you make a lot of good points there and I really cant argue against the strength of a different diff. The engineer in me and my "build it up as strong as possible" motto would love to do that. For me the problem is the price difference, yes having a fully built currie f9, rock jock 60, or equivalent would be great and I would never have to worry about a diff blowing, but I did some research and all said and done I would be looking at well north of 5 grand just to build the axle. Thats not accounting for all the other little things that would add up pretty quickly as well and I just can't justify that. Whereas the full float ruff stuff housing and everything would put me in the neighboorhood of 2 grand. That's a much better price to stomach. Is it the strongest I can get? by far no. But I've never seen an 8-inch diff blow with the arb carrier, every single R&P failure I've seen has been on either a Toyota e locker case or open diff case. I think that's because of how thin the mounting surface is on the Toyota cases and under heavy torque or shock load it deflects causing the gears to unseat from each other enough to be riding on the tip of the tooth and then break. If you look at most of the failures they arent the whole tooth shearing off, its only like 50% of the tooth. I honestly think with 35s and knowing the limits of the truck I will be able to get the diff to hold together fine. A lot of it is setup as well, the Toyota diffs seem to be incredibly picky in that regard compared to the dana, sterling, or corporate axles that seem like you can just slam gears in and they will work fine.
The $2k price tag is a lot better to swallow than the $5 axle for sure. Especially a full float for that price I hear ya. That’s why I havent swapped out my axle yet. Still saving up pennies. I haven’t seen one blow a ring and pinion on the arb version either so there is something to be said about the larger ring gear. The Toyota gears are very sensitive to the set up of the gears as well. Hopefully it works for you and is reliable and then I might have to reconsider swapping out the axle
 

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#17
Last weekend I head down to Moab for the Tacoma world rock therapy event to meet up with a bunch of friends from Colorado. It was a crazy weekend with A LOT of driving but it was totally worth it. I left Bozeman around 2 PM Friday after my last class and drove through the night getting into Moab around 1 AM. Along the way, I met up with my friend Adam in Salt Lake who followed me down to Moab. We were up till almost 4 am talking around the fire with everyone and that meant the next day would be a late start.

We decided to run gold bar rim and part of golden spike on Saturday with our sights set on the golden crack. Since we didn't hit the trail until almost noon we knew it was going to be a long day, the group had also split up and the first group of 4 trucks that I was with made good time through the first few optional obstacles.

The first major obstacle is the waterfall. It is basically an 8-foot tall slickrock face that drops you straight down at a super steep angle. It continues to get more and more dugout and to me, this is essentially the Moab version of backdoor. I had run this trail in March on my little 265s and had no problem with this obstacle but when I walked up to it became abundantly clear that it had gotten way more dug out over the last few months. There used to be a super easy line on the north side of the wall which made getting up super easy but it had all but disappeared. After taking a quick look I decided to take the same line I had previously and lined up on what I thought was the same line. The problem with this obstacle is its so steep that you reach a point where you have no control and just slide down the rest of the way. That's where things went sideways, I didn't line up perfectly square and when I started sliding my wheels were forced to turn driver and then I ended up off my line with my driver tire wedged against a rock, I tried to correct it but with all the weight on the front end I couldn't turn and as I moved forward I could see the wheel being forced past the steering stop and getting into a really nasty bind.

Untitled
by David Todd, on Flickr

We hooked up a winch to pull some weight off the front and after doing that I was able to right my line and drive out of the obstacle. Once I was down I noticed my truck was dripping what looked like transmission fluid... great... after a closer look the transmission had started leaking out of the top of the case through the breather due to the steep angle. We brought Adam down next and he ended up in the same exact situation but due to the smaller tie rods on the 5th gens he ended up stretching is drivers inner tie rod throwing his alignment way off.

After we had Adam down the rest of the group showed up and they were able to make quick work of the wall.
IMG_0216
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

Max for some reason took basically the worst line down. But being in the big 80 on 40s he just kinda forced his way through it
FLEM9054
by alex fleming, on Flickr

We continued on towards the crack but it was already 3 in the afternoon.
IMG_0341
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0380
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
_DSC1764
by Will Oliver, on Flickr

Around 5 we reached the golden crack and after waiting for a group of jeeps to go through it was tie to have some fun. It was also here that we discovered Hayden had broken his driverside motor mount which was fixed with a rachet strap but unfortunately meant he wouldnt be taking on the crack

IMG_0403
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0409
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0440
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

I think Jim ended up with the most spectacular wheel stand
IMG_0468
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

After everyone had gone through we turned around and started to head back out the way we came in. Other than a few spots we that we had to winch the one open diff 4runner up the trip out was super smooth. We reached the waterfall around 9 and after waiting for a few jeeps and a tacoma who had broke a CV and refused to swap it winch out we got our shot. I gave the wall one shot but I lost my momentum and the front end started sliding sideways so in the interest of time I winched up. Of the 10 trucks only 3 made it up without winching.
_DSC1935
by Will Oliver, on Flickr
_DSC1946
by Will Oliver, on Flickr

We rolled off the trail around 10pm and after grabbing dinner in town we headed back to camp and everyone was out within an hour.
 
Last edited:

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
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Messages
133
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Location
Bozeman MT
#18
Day two was hells revenge. This is a trail I have ran several times before and its super easy but there are enough optional obstacles to keep it fun. Since everyone was planning on heading home today we got an early start and were on the trail by 9

The main goal was hells gate since there was a handful in the group that wanted to run it, myself included
IMG_0532
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
_DSC1977
by Will Oliver, on Flickr
_DSC2088
by Will Oliver, on Flickr

As luck would have it right before we reached the gate it started raining and it was clear there was a lot of moisture from earlier in the area as well. Any of you who have wheeled slick rock know it has loads of traction untill its wet, then it basically is like driving o snow, I started to have a bad feeling about the gate and decided to not run it, I had already run it before so I didnt have anything to prove and didnt want to risk potential damage. Max was up first and due to the wet conditions he couldn't hold the line and nearly rolled twice, I ended up winching him part way up but Jim and Noah walked up in the trail limo tacos. Noah did learn the hard way though that the 3rd gen tacos dont like steep inclines and will start drinking oil.
IMG_0551
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0557
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0571
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr
IMG_0579
by Phoenix Black, on Flickr

After everyone was clear of the gate we turned around and headed out the way we came in. The entrance to hells revenge was recently redone to allow two-way traffic in and out and it was a very strange perspective going in reverse. After everyone had aired up we all parted ways and headed home. I ended up driving through the night again but made it home in time for my calc exam in the morning. Overall even though I was only there for 36 hours it was a great trip, got to meet lots of cool people and hang out with friends new and old, cant wait to do it again! The only trail damage for this trip was a broken light mount in the bumper and some saggy rear coils. Ive been running the OME 891s for 2 years now but they just arent up to the task anymore. Once I was home I picked up some OEM land cruiser 7 wraps for 50 bucks and it looks like these will do the trick. My unloaded hight is an inch taller so I sit at 4 inches which I dont really like but under load they sit right at 3 inches and I think they ride much better.
 

AssBurns

will wheel for beer
Staff member
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
2,238
Location
Yucaipa, CA
#19
That looks like a super fun trip! I can't wait to make it up there one of these days.

In regards to that waterfall being like Backdoor. I know it's really hard to judge the difficulty of things in pictures, but backdoor is a whole new level of difficulty. We go out there just to watch people fail for hours and only a couple rigs actually make it up. It's definitely the hardest single obstacle that I know of at the Hammers. If you ever get a chance to make it to KOH, definitely spend a few hours at Backdoor at night. It turns into a hell of a party.
 

Theblackflag

Mall Crawler
Vendor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
133
Age
20
Location
Bozeman MT
#20
I've seen the vidoes and pictures of it. It's absolutely insane. Even after it filled in recently which won't last long. I'm sure it's much bigger than the waterfall and without a doubt tougher. The waterfall is at least smooth where back door is well... Not haha.

Just a bit of a comparison being that the two are a similar type of obstacle. You either need a long wheel base or really big tires and a heavy foot to make it.

I'm hoping to make it to KOH in the next couple of years. Hopefully some day race it. That's on my bucket list at this point
 

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