04-4-4-4 Conversion/Build

Martinjmpr

Wiffleball Batter
:confused: Guess I don't get it.

What's the point of getting a 4 cyl if it's still got the slushbox behind it? With all that weight you've added on that thing is going to be as slow as molasses running uphill in January, and I'd be surprised if it gives you any improvement in MPG.

Now a 4 cyl/5 speed combo would make sense to me. But given how un-spectacular even the 3.4 is with an auto, I can only imagine that the 4 cyl/auto combo is much, much worse.

I guess its unique, if that's what you're going for, but I can't imagine that it performs any better or gets significantly better MPG than a standard DC 4x4 with the 3.4/auto combination.
 

upcountry

Explorer
:confused: Guess I don't get it.

What's the point of getting a 4 cyl if it's still got the slushbox behind it? With all that weight you've added on that thing is going to be as slow as molasses running uphill in January, and I'd be surprised if it gives you any improvement in MPG.

Now a 4 cyl/5 speed combo would make sense to me. But given how un-spectacular even the 3.4 is with an auto, I can only imagine that the 4 cyl/auto combo is much, much worse.

I guess its unique, if that's what you're going for, but I can't imagine that it performs any better or gets significantly better MPG than a standard DC 4x4 with the 3.4/auto combination.
Agree. While it looks like a fun project, and you got to get up close and personal with your drivetrain (you will know how to fix it since you built it), it seems like a lot of work and $$ when you could have just bought the 3.4L with the same setup.

Dont get me wrong, I love the truck, and if you in flat land, not pulling huge passes at 10,000 feet, the 4cylinder is likely fine. Just seems like a lot of work for something they sell already assembled?

One question: Did you use the factory parts from the 4WD driveline and just swap them out, or did you use specialized aftermarket parts? If you went with aftermearket parts, I see what you were trying to do.

Also, why did you not just do a Solid Axle if you had to go through the effort to rebuild the whole front end?

Again, I love the truck. These are just questions not criticisms. Thanks for posting the thread.
 

phsycle

Adventurer
I'm sure he realizes it's not a rocket ship. He's got 5.29's, though, and personally, I'd have zero problems with that set up.

Good looking rig.
 

tanglefoot

ExPoseur
Wow--excellent! If only Toyota would offer that combo + manual-locking hubs in the US!

I'd would certainly go out of my way to run the 4cyl instead of a V-6 myself. Timing chain + ease of maintenance + lighter weight + 1 cylinder head instead of 2. The 2.7 has plenty of grunt and auto trannies transmit much more of the power than they used to. I'm always impressed by the available power of the recent 4-cylinder/auto platforms I've ridden in.

Great build--I bet it crawls like a dream!
 

LAF943

Observer
Hello all, and thanks for the input. All very valid points and I can see the reasoning behind each. I get the same questions from friends and co-workers all the time. I used to have several "single role" vehicles....the commuter, the "nice" car, the hauler, etc. I wanted to cut the fleet down to one "multi-purpose" rig. So I purchased the truck with the intent to use it as a daily driver.

If I could sum this truck up in one word, that would be "compromise". I compromised:
*bed length for cab space (and gave up factory-installed 4WD)
*SFA for IFS for on-road performance
*auto tranny for convenience in the commute
*stock parts over some of the better aftermarket parts for reliability (IMO) and convenience (could always find a Toyota dealer somewhere!)
*comfort (it isn't horrible, but it's no Mercedes!)
*and finally...the 4 cylinder is a compromise between power, MPG's, and reliability (IMO....like it was mentioned...timing chain, etc.....even engine bay space!)

I go to work in this truck, grocery shopping, out to dinner, and off-roading on the weekends. It's definitely not the best rock crawler, mall crawler, dragster, or commuter...but it's a joy to drive and does a little bit of everything at a decent level. I really like driving this truck....it reminds me of the buzzy 4cyl. mini trucks we drove in high school....not a lot of power, but it could take a beating!

I'll admit there was a bit of "let see if we can do this conversion" attitude in this project...but it became my hobby and a way to escape (to the shop!). I never intended to make a "one-off" or unique vehicle....I just worked with what I had (and wanted to keep!). I would guess the average speed in my commute is about 55 MPH, so day-in-day-out power hasn't really been an issue. The truck has no problem keeping up, but you'll never find me in the fast lane! I wouldn't describe it as "grossly underpowered", and the gearing helps quite a bit.
 
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Louisd75

Adventurer
How long ago did you get your rear bumper? I took a quick look at the website and didn't see anything listed for first gen Tacomas. Your truck looks great!
 

LAF943

Observer
Got the bumper a little over a year ago. Try emailing them. I had no issues dealing with them, and they were willing to accommodate some changes I requested without hesitation.
 

Rot Box

Explorer
I don't think this build is a compromise as far as engines go. The 3RZ is not the 22R/RE of old it actually produces acceptable power. If thats not enough the best mileage mine received was 6mpg better than any 5VZ-FE i've owned.

Having owned both I'd say for what I do I would rather have another 3RZ than my 5VZ-FE :eek:
 

trailrunner

Observer
I was wondering if you had any pictures of the front diff install? It seemed like the build kinda jumped from installing the hubs to installing the ARB. Was there a lot of fabrication involved or was it fairly straight forward?
 

LAF943

Observer
I'll have to look for the diff pics. I don't think I have anything good. I bought a non-ADD diff from another forum, and brought it to central 4 wheel drive who actually installed it when they did the gears and ARB. It's truly a bolt-in endevour. It turned out I didn't get a bracket that was on the rear of the diff, so Central ordered one from Toyota. The holes for the diff are there (on the crossmember) and there's already a cut-out for the t-case shifter. Everything was bolt-on to go 4WD. I can PM you the parts list/diagram if you like.
 

dorton

#rockcreekoverland
Very cool build. Congrats on a very cool rig!

I don't think this build is a compromise as far as engines go. The 3RZ is not the 22R/RE of old it actually produces acceptable power. If thats not enough the best mileage mine received was 6mpg better than any 5VZ-FE i've owned.

Having owned both I'd say for what I do I would rather have another 3RZ than my 5VZ-FE :eek:
I agree. The 3RZ is a great motor, I'd love to have one in a 1st gen 4runner.
 
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