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Thread: Project T100: "Baja Explorer Ver. 2"

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Default Project T100: "Baja Explorer Ver. 2"

    I have spent so many hours here on ExPo reading build-ups, reviews, and everything in between that I figured its about time I introduce myself and my project. A little less then a year ago I picked up a used 1997 Toyota T100, I was looking around for one for about 5 months before I found it, I was being pretty picky on what I wanted as far as miles, year, manual trans., seats, color.

    Heres what I got:
    -97 T100 SR5 V6 3.4
    -4x4
    -Manual trans.
    -121,000 miles
    -Bucket seats
    -Tow package
    -Camper shell with carpet kit.

    Here is a picture of how it rolled up on drive way the day I picked it up.



    The first thing I did was take off the mud flaps, nerf bars, and logos. I am not a big fan of chrome.



    Next I ended up selling the camper-shell, nerf bars, and the nasty old carpet kit. This increased my build up budget by almost $600. And made my truck look a lot better.



    Now I am ready to do some work. Here is some of what I have planned for the new truck:

    -Power roll down rear window (like the quad cab tundras)
    -Camper shell with double cargo doors
    -Roof rack with side awning, lights, surf racks, and possible tent incorporated.
    -Rear bumper
    -Front bumper with hitch and some lights
    -285/75 R 16's on some black steel rims
    -On-board Air system
    -Dual battery setup
    97' Toyota T100 SR5 4x4 Manual Trans.

  2. #2
    Love the T's they are a solid platform in which you will build an awesome truck out of! Looking forward to your ideas and progress.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default Baja Explorer Ver. 1

    So you can get a little more of an idea of what I am trying to produce, I should tell you about my first project. I am basically rebuilding this, just better, with some new ideas:

    "Ol' Blue" as I used to call her, was a 94' Dodge Dakota 4x4 5.2 V8. I bought her with 80,000 miles and sold her 7 years later with 240,000. She was tough, but throughout the process of building her I knew if I had to ever do it over again it would be on a Toyota.



    She was nothing more than a pickup truck when I bought her from her yuppie previous owner who had only shifted it into 4wd once just to "see what it was like". I immediately started taking her down to baja on surf trips. 4wd was the key that unlocked many new areas of baja and started my mission to explore every part of the pacific baja coastline possible. Living in san diego at the time I was going down there a couple times a month, so I got a camper shell for her, I wanted a roof rack but couldn't find what I wanted so I bought a welder and built my own roof rack, from there I just started making modifcations to make my life easier while camping on trips, which ultimately ended up like this:





    The Inside:



    97' Toyota T100 SR5 4x4 Manual Trans.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Medford, Oregon
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    723
    T100's are a great truck, a nice choice to build off of. We don't see too many built up, I'd like to see more.
    The set-up in your Dakota was pretty sweet looking too.
    "Adventure is a word that get's over used, to me real adventure doesn't start until it all goes wrong"- Yvon Chouinard

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Rockies
    Posts
    455
    I love my '95 T100 DX. Absolutely great truck.



    Suggestion: A really good and cost-effective lift option is the kit from Toytec which enables a 2" all-around lift.... You get 2" ball joint spacers up front, 2" add-a-leaf in rear with extended length ProComp shocks all the way around. Works great and adds nicely to the already good stock ground clearance.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    The Nanny State
    Posts
    5,750
    I remember the Dakota thread or postings. Nice looking T-100. That makes 4 of them now here that I know of.
    I used to swerve around my hallucinations, now I drive right through them.

  7. #7
    kcowyo's Avatar
    kcowyo is offline Expedition Portal Moderator ExPo Original
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Lander, Wyoming
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    Nice truck... looks very familiar!

    Bucket seats = best ever from Toyota. Great choice.

    Looks like you've got the Toyota rake/stinkbug effect... is there already an add-a-leaf in the rear?

    Looks like 17" Sequoia rims...?

    Your rear window project sounds like a big project. I'll be anxious to follow that.

    285/75's will fit on stock suspension ( I ran them for years before adding a small lift) and they're a great match for the weight & width of the T100.

    Bumpers... if you bought a welder I'm assuming the bumpers will be home-made? No real desirable mass produced options left for T100 bumpers...


    A similar camping set-up to your Dodge will be perfect, should look great. Hands down my favorite truck that I've owned. Best of luck & have fun!




    .
    '97 Toyota T100 - some stuff and some stories....
    '89 Toyota FJ62 - fractal cruising

    currently listening to - Michael Kiwanuka "Home Again"
    recommended reading - Dead Run by Dan Schultz

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Ventura, CA
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    Awesome, we've got 1 more T100 on here, and what looks to be a nice build!

    I think I saw your Dakota for sale on Craigslist, are you in Ventura County?
    I wish I'd known you were selling the camper.

    I picked up a 1996 DX Xcab 4x4 a few months back. Not doing a build thread because it would be really boring! So far its got a set of 33x10.5R15 BFG AT's on the stock rims and stock suspension. Planning to do the ball joint spacer lift (already have the parts) and longer shackles in the rear to match.

    I guess this thread will get the attention of the most members with T100's, so I'll post it up here: Someone has created a pdf version of the T100 factory service nmanual, and the NCttora club was good enough to host it: http://www.ncttora.com/fsm
    Last edited by MotoDave; 03-08-2010 at 10:00 PM.
    1962 IH Scout 80
    2012 Tundra

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    Native San Diego
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    25
    Just get a 4Wheel Camper, make a nice roof rack, and throw your 10 gal of gas on the back! Oh and yeah I agree, OBA and a good tire repair kit.
    BajaRunner

    New: 1997 4Runner Limited locked on 31's

    Old: 1996 Toyota 4Runner Locked on 35's

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    So Cal
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    Quote Originally Posted by kcowyo View Post
    Nice truck... looks very familiar!

    Bucket seats = best ever from Toyota. Great choice.

    Looks like you've got the Toyota rake/stinkbug effect... is there already an add-a-leaf in the rear?

    Looks like 17" Sequoia rims...?
    .

    KC,
    I am glad you found my thread cause I know I am going to be asking you some questions. I have probably read just about every one of your posts that has to do with your T100, as it is basically the same truck. Wish I had the supercharger.

    You definately got a good eye, 100% correct on the 17" rims, and I have been complaining about the stinkbug look since day one, I am pretty sure I don't have an AAL, I could be wrong, but have looked and I don't see anything special back there. I was thinking hopefully just some ball joint spacers would solve that problem and at the same time help me fit some 285s in the front. I saw in one of your posts you put on 1" ball joint spacers not 1.5" what was the reason for that?

    I am a little worried about putting on some BJ spacers, I have heard some mixed reviews. I have heard that they can break and it can't be good to have to cut away some of your upper control arm to make them fit.
    Anybody have any input on this?
    97' Toyota T100 SR5 4x4 Manual Trans.

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