what truck to start with? - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
Prerunner Cars & Trucks Discussion about Off-Road Prerunner Cars & Trucks 2 or 4-Wheeldrive

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2003, 07:07 PM
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what truck to start with?

i am planning on starting to build a pre-runner, i want a base that has many hop ups and parts around already, with a good foundation already. i was thinking of using either a ford ranger, f-150, toyota pickup of some type (weight, add a larger engine), or some sort of chevy (s10?).

what are the favorable trucks to start with? I dont want to spend much for the truck, but, am willing to put lots of money into it down the road. i was hoping to keep the first payment (for the truck itself) around 2-3K, but, up to 5-6K if its worth it. what model/year do you suggest?

what are good companys to look into for upgrades (ie. fiberglass fenders).

what is a good size tire for pre-runner? i figure if i do a little racing i want big tires for going over anything (think 44") but, want low cg (think 20"). i am figuring i want 34-38" whats the norm? what works well?

i kno thats a lot to read, but, thanks for any help u can give me to start this!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2003, 08:51 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

Toyotas and Fords are the norm. Chevys can be used, but take alot of work to clearance the frame out for coil overs.

On Fords, you can get lots of travel easy.

On Toys, you can get not as much travel, but more reliability.

On these trucks, 33-35 sometimes 37" on the F150s are used.

post #3 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2003, 10:41 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

which years do you recomend to look at? also which models? lets see, im trying to shoot all my questions at once [img]images/graemlins/AR15firing.gif[/img]. this truck will be basically just for fun and street legal driving. i was thinking toyota with a small block chevy, but, i think im going to want the travel. this may be a question that has answer that goes along with "depends how big your pocket book is" but, what trucks tend to handle better? roll over less?

most importanly, what models and YEARS [key word, model year(s)] do your recomend? if you have the advantages/disadvantages in more detail, that would be very much apreciated too! thanx for your time

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2003, 10:42 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

just a side note, that truck under yer name is *fat bastard voice* "dead sexay *stops/ fat bastard voice*
post #5 of (permalink) Old 02-26-2003, 10:48 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

lol, just found this, i think it looks like a great base, since i want 4x4 on it, plus it has a 3.0 v-6 already. would a truck like this make a good prerunner base? i am starting to dig the light weight/good reliability deal. i am getting sick of spending money on poor reliability, even if great performance.
(i will not bid on this, just using ebay to find trucks)

i just realised, its an ext-cab, i would want a standard of a similar toyota if it is a good base, still looking for imput on models/years, thanks!
post #6 of (permalink) Old 03-01-2003, 08:37 AM
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Re: what truck to start with?

Go with an older model, maybe 85 - 94 regardless of model. Then you won't have to deal with smog, airbags, OBDIII, etc... as much. I think that will make it a lot easier on you, especially if it has to be street legal.
Now, if I got a Toyota, I think I'd drop in a Chevy 4.3 V6. It's basically a 350 minus two cylinders, and will save a lot of weight. With a truck as light as a Toyota, there will be plenty of power for you.

And of course, have fun with it. [img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 03-01-2003, 11:29 AM
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Re: what truck to start with?

For the Ford Rangers personally I'd go with one of the TTB 2wd's or 4x4's. So basically any year Ranger before 97 or 96, I forget which year they switched to torsion bar IFS. Might even be 98 as the cut off. Personally I'd try for about a 94-95 with a 4.0L V6 and 5 speed stick. From before the previously mentioned OBD-II overmind computer so engine mods would be easier, and the engine still has a good amount of power.

F150, again, I'd go for a TTB F150, 2wd or 4x4, so basically you are looking at a 80-96 4x4 or 2wd's from 96 back to the late 60's at least. Lotsa good engines, but it seems like the 351W is the best bang for your buck in daily driver mpg, power, and parts availability and commonality. The 5.0L 302 is a good engine as well, you're just starting with a smaller package is all.

Toyota........IFS is the hot setup for PreRunners, so basically a 86-95 2wd or 4x4 would work. There are some pretty good setups available for both, from Downey's 3" kits to Total Chaos' 6" long travel kits for the 4x4's.[img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img] Personally I'd probably go for a 22RE fuel injected motor over the Toyota 3.0L V6. It's not a bad engine, but Toyota really crammed it in there. If you want to do any modifications to the engine, it's going to involve removal of parts. When my buddy wanted to put new belts on his 92 he ended up having a shop do it, I beleive they had to at least loosen the radiator to get clearance. I've seen 4.3L Chevy's swapped in with more room. The 22RE is a good 4 cylinder and makes good power for it's size, not to mention there are ooodles of stuff for it and many aftermarket supporters. Again, go with a 5 speed. If you want to swap something in, especially in a PreRunner where light weight is good, a fuel injected 4.3L is hard to beat. 80% the power of a 350, but much easier to make fit in the Toyota.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 03-01-2003, 01:29 PM
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i think i will start with...

i think i am going to start with a toyota 1994 4x4 and do an engine swap, tho, if i start with a 22re or a 3.0 im not going to worry. if i do a swap, its not going to matter, i will just find a truck with what i want, and not worry about the engine thats in it.

anyone know any good front suspension mods? i want to run 35" and get about 20" travel (i have seen 21" done without crossing a arms). also, do you know any sites that have some info on a arm crossing on toys, i havent seen it done much at all, but, i have seen it done.

also, any rear mods that stand out? other than high mounting the shocks in the beds (i will be doing that).

thanks for all your help! [img]images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
post #9 of (permalink) Old 03-03-2003, 08:26 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

Ive been busy, or i would have replied.

For Toyotas, i perfer 89-95 due to the body style and better
designed EFI plenum on the 22REs.

Basically on the 4x4s(like you said you want) you can go to Total Chaos and get their Caddy kit which is +3.25" wider per side, and use +2.5" shocks. Use T-100 axles to retain 4wd. That kit will get you about 13" travel(limited to 12" i believe with 4wd).

To get 20" travel out of the front, you pretty much lose 4wd. There is a kit out by Esco Sick Boys that uses stock pivot points with +5.5" wider arms per side that swings a claimed 19" travel(the kit is for the 4wd chassis only, but you can not use 4wd).

I like 22REs myself as there is more room to work on the engine, more room for shock hoops\engine cage, and lighter weight on the front end.

If you want to keep 4wd and have as much travel as you were talking, then you need to get a I beam Ford ranger or Explorer and contact Camburg. They have a kit and extended 4wd axle beams to accomidate you. www.camburg.com
is a start.
post #10 of (permalink) Old 03-04-2003, 07:12 PM
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Re: what truck to start with?

Go Bronco 2. Think outside the box. [img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

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