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Old 01-21-2020, 04:52 PM #16
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It seems there are some different origin stories, but most people seem to have a history of tinkering and working on cars. I'll say that I fall into the category of necessity.
I moved to an amazing little outdoor paradise in Idaho, and upon selling my 2WD 4runner for a 98 4WD 4runner realized the previous owners did not take the same level of care with it as I did with my previous one. Because this outdoor paradise is 75 miles from a decent size city I found out there are absolutely zero mechanics that are worth a damn nearby. So out of my own need, I started really using this forum and your videos to start working on my own car. I went from being terrified about changing brake pads to feeling fully confident while replacing the entire front-end of my truck and tackling the timing belt, and tons of other upgrades and maintenance.

At the very least, I owe you two a huge "Thank you!" for the thousands I've saved doing all my own mechanical work and all the excellent knowledge about turning wrenches. I've learned that all the same principles can be translated to working on other cars, so I do all our car maintenance and work for the time being.
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Old 01-21-2020, 06:04 PM #17
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My story is sorta similar to those previously posted. I grew up wrenching with my dad. He was DIY or die on everything – cars, plumbing, electrical work, etc. We weren’t poor but we didn’t have a lot of money either and he couldn’t stand to waste any on for work he could do (or learn to do) himself. I don’t think we ever had a car that was more than 10 years old either – so there was plenty to work on.

I really regret it now, but I didn’t really pay much attention to what he taught me when I was growing up. We all had Volvo wagons when I was a kid (240s and 740s). I didn’t think they were cool (this is way before they became hipster fashion items), so I helped out when needed but had little enthusiasm for wrenching. I liked mechanical stuff - in high school I worked as a bike shop mechanic – but I just didn’t care at all about cars.

I grew up and moved out, but kept driving 740 wagons since they were affordable and reliable. My house I was only an hour away from the rents, so when things broke down he’d inevitably lend a hand. Since he’d been working on the same red block engine for the past 30 years, he could usually diagnose the problem instantly. As a result, I still wasn’t learning much - kinda like how those Blue Apron meals don’t teach you how to cook, ya know? They make it too easy.

But eventually the old Volvos got too pricy and hard to maintain, I needed something newer. He told me 4Runners had a good rep for reliability, so I starting looking into those. Eventually landed on 3rd Gens and after a good 6 months of looking, I found mine. That was a game changer. For the first time in my life, I’m actually excited about what I’m driving. Basic maintenance and repairs turned from an annoying chore to a (usually) satisfying job. I’m still pretty amateur by the standards of this forum, but every job leaves me feeling a little more confident. I still ask for help from my pops sometimes, but answers to most of my questions can be found on this forum.

Honestly, I don’t know how people put up with repair costs. My GF’s XJ got stolen last month, it needed new locks all around, a tail light, a new steering wheel and column, plus some minor body work. The shop estimate was about $2000. I fixed it with a day’s work (including the trip to the junkyard) and $120 in parts. It wasn't that hard either.

I have a friend from El Salvador who's a mechanic at a Mazda dealership. He was telling me he inherited some land back home, so I asked him if he ever thought of moving back. He said no way, mechanics get paid crap down there. Everyone does their own work, so there's little demand for help. Shop labor is expensive up here because no one does their own work anymore.
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Old 01-21-2020, 06:25 PM #18
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Originally Posted by Ser1clymb View Post
It seems there are some different origin stories, but most people seem to have a history of tinkering and working on cars. I'll say that I fall into the category of necessity.
I moved to an amazing little outdoor paradise in Idaho, and upon selling my 2WD 4runner for a 98 4WD 4runner realized the previous owners did not take the same level of care with it as I did with my previous one. Because this outdoor paradise is 75 miles from a decent size city I found out there are absolutely zero mechanics that are worth a damn nearby. So out of my own need, I started really using this forum and your videos to start working on my own car. I went from being terrified about changing brake pads to feeling fully confident while replacing the entire front-end of my truck and tackling the timing belt, and tons of other upgrades and maintenance.

At the very least, I owe you two a huge "Thank you!" for the thousands I've saved doing all my own mechanical work and all the excellent knowledge about turning wrenches. I've learned that all the same principles can be translated to working on other cars, so I do all our car maintenance and work for the time being.
I've been to your little part of paradise in Idaho. I've mountain biked in the Ketchum and Stanley areas. I liked the area except for the Ketchum police force. I got a freaking ticket for going 27 mph. I didn't know the speed limit was 20 on this one section of road. I think they prey on out of state people. I was pretty pissed.
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Old 01-22-2020, 02:09 AM #19
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My old man was an engineer by training, but morphed into a businessman. He worked on cars growing up, and then got some advanced training serving as Motor Pool Officer at Ft. McClellan in Alabama during WWII. My shop vise still proudly wears infantry green as the vise, the Fort, and my father were all decommissioned together in 1946.

He maintained our ancient Farmall tractors, and as a little kid I would help him. My first engine was a 5hp Tecumseh on a Fox Go-kart frame I got for my tenth birthday. By the time I was 12 I had rebuilt that thing after an engine fire, so I developed some skills. I progressed to taking over the tractors and land mowers on the estate I grew up on, as well as helping with the family cars, and when I got old enough I took care of all my own cars, starting with a 1968 V8 Pontiac LeMans (luxe version of the GTO). So I've been wrenching for almost 60 years, maybe 57?

Once I retired, with the help of the internet and lots of free time, I've expanded the gamut of things I am willing to undertake, culminating in my backyard frame swap I did three years ago on my beloved 3rd gen. Still, my first love is my 1966 Farmall 140 tractor, purchased when I was 14, and only wrenched by myself and my father (briefly, he passed in 1971).
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:36 AM #20
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Diy

Gas Jockey at age 17, tire changes, repairs oil changes, minor stuff. Picked up a bit from the mechanics when they'd tolerate my questions, my father a bit also. Old school, only 2 reasons an engine won't start, fuel or fire!

Early 20's my buddy had head gasket go in his Z24 Cavalier, think we could do that in your garage? he asked. There we were, 2 donkeys in a garage no clue what we were doing, armed with some miscellaneous tools and a Chiltons repair manual. Step by step(slowly) took us a wk but we got it done. Still to this day biggest job I've completed.

8yrs ago had an offer to move across country & given keys to my buddys 97 limited locking diff. Took me 6mo to realize after not being able to find my dream suv (94-95 Pathfinder SSE or something like that) that his 4Runner was my dream SUV, so my search across 4 provinces began and found my 99 SR5 in excellent condition. Love it and the look is timeless imo.

I always liked the look of 4Runner but thought they were too expensive for my budget. Now that I own one I'm a Toyota guy for life. Astonished a 20yr old vehicle still operates like a dream with all original parts. Sunroof, no leaks etc and as we all know list goes on & on. Only rear window not working due to mechanical failure(guides or something).

These past few months Ive replaced lwr ball joints, inner/outer tie rods, rack, full tb kit, muffler, fuel filter, rad hoses, coolant lines to rear htr, diff breather. Of all these parts only the muffler and coolant lines had failed. Everything else was preventative.
For a truck with almost 200,000 miles and all original I find this amazing and knowing how long the originals lasted I replaced everything with OEM with muffler as only exception, oh and poly bushings for fsb/endlinks and steering rack. Being in Canada and EXTREMELY jealous of WC rust free parts that guys just give away when doing their upgrades, parts are hard to come by. My local dealer deems most parts "Obsolete". Parts are ordered from US and shipped to border state and picked up there. Yeah, it's expensive..

Point of that is that I can't express enough, my gratitude for all Tim, Sean and Guests videos that allow me to save on DIY installs because otherwise I'd be back in a Chev. All the input from members, tips tricks etc I read a lot, knowing my vehicle is now 20+yrs old and at some point I'll be needing those threads that are posted.

T4R Org is awesome and I pass site along to any and all 4R owners I come across.

PS. EC needs underground parts railroad from WC & AZ etc.

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Old 01-22-2020, 12:18 PM #21
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I started at 19. I saved up and bought my first car, an old 1998 Honda Civic with over 200k miles. I had no previous experience in DIY auto repair, never even changed a tire. I got my first bill from a dealer paying $500 to replace a CV axle, when I looked up the part later I realized it was a $50 part and I should really learn to do this stuff myself, I couldn't afford to keep paying for car repair. With the help of civic dedicated forums I started with oil changes and tune-ups and eventually did a clutch & transmission replacement on it. I moved on to a 2000 Civic that was perfect. I put many hours into maintenance and tasteful upgrades. I still regret selling the 2000 Civic. It was exactly where I wanted my car to be, cosmetically and mechanically.



Eventually due to job and family changes I chose to get a 1995 Honda Accord Station wagon and through a lot of research and planning swapped the automatic transmission for a manual. With the manual transmission it was my favorite vehicle to date, unfortunately it was totaled by an idiot running a stop sign.

RIP


Eventually I decided to get a 4runner. Through reading the buyers guide and known problems I decided I wanted a 99-00 Limited with 4wd and the rear e-locker. From reading posts I realized how hard it would be to find those specs in good condition. Eventually I found my 2000 Limited, good frame/body/interior. Somewhat neglected mechanically. Thanks to my gradual progression of ever escalating difficultly auto repair projects and the wealth of information on this forum I have been able to restore my 4runner to amazing running condition.



I never have owned, nor ever plan to buy a vehicle new, I've always bought cars that were at least 10 years old with over 150k miles on them and models that are very popular (1998 Civic, 2000 Civic, 1997 Corolla, 1995 Accord Wagon, 1997 Accord Wagon, 2003 Suburban, 2000 4runner) so that there would already be a strong community in place of DIY support for amateurs like myself. I'm sure I've saved a staggering amount of money over the years with DIY projects instead of shop costs. It has also slowly paid for new and special tools over the years. I have only ever paid a shop for tires, alignments, the first time for the axle for my first Civic, and once for a muffler shop to weld some exhaust sections for me. I don't always feel like the project is within the realm of my ability but through the wealth of information and support available I always make it through. Occasionally I make mistakes that make the project cost more than planned but it still always ends up being financially cheaper plus I end up with more experience and tools for next time.
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Old 01-22-2020, 12:37 PM #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtbtim View Post
I've been to your little part of paradise in Idaho. I've mountain biked in the Ketchum and Stanley areas. I liked the area except for the Ketchum police force. I got a freaking ticket for going 27 mph. I didn't know the speed limit was 20 on this one section of road. I think they prey on out of state people. I was pretty pissed.

Ooh, bummer! Ya the cops don't mess around with speeding, and it's amazing how suddenly the speed limit drops from 65 to 20. Hopefully the biking made up for the bad taste left in your mouth. I'm inclined to agree with you about them keeping an eye out for CA and WA tags, but when I still had my Alabama tag I think they felt sorry for me and let me off a few times.

Now that I think about it, did you happen to go check out the local hot springs in Ketchum? I remember meeting someone out there who seemed pretty knowledgeable about 3rd gen 4runners.
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Old 01-22-2020, 01:08 PM #23
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I had done a little wrenching on a '71 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme convertible I got the summer before my senior year of high school. Nothing big, just things like alternator, fan clutch, and starter motor replacement, but I had a buddy that would help me do tuneups. That was the extent of my auto repair experience. Fast forward 35 years later, I bought my daughter a '97 4WD 4Runner SR5 with 256k miles on it, and knowing it would need some work I got the wrench bug.

I took the 4Runner to the shop to get it aligned, and the guy came out and said that the lower ball joints needed to be replaced, and that would be $600.00. I declined. Then he said all 4 shocks needed to be replaced, and that would cost $700.00. I declined that too. And that is when the journey started. I figured that I could buy the parts, and do so much more work than what they quoted for around the same dollar amount, and that would include beefing up my tool collection. Not being a mechanic, I started watching videos and reading posts from this TR4 forum. That is how I discovered Tim and Sean's videos. So, what started as a $1,300.00 quote to replace the lower ball joints and shocks, evolved into the following repairs, which launched my mechanic hobby (for lack of a better term)... and were all done with the help of Tim and Sean's videos:

-Replaced both lower ball joints
-Replaced both upper ball joints
-Replaced the bushings in the upper and lower control arms, for the front and rear
-Replaced the steering rack and sway bar bushings
-Replaced both CV axles with remans from Napa (looks to be OEM parts)
-Replaced all 4 shocks with the Billstein 5100 0-2.3" lift shocks
-Replaced the rear coils with OME 2906 coils, to achieve the 2" lift I wanted

The inner and outer tie rods seemed fine, so other than keeping those the entire suspension is new. I definitely spent way more than the $1,300.00, but did 10 times what the shop quoted to do, and I bought tons of new tools, like a DeWalt cordless impact gun, a bunch of deep sockets, so seal pullers, an OTC front end puller set, floor jack, jack stands, wheel chocks, and lots more hand tools I didn't already have.

The next thing I wanted to do, as it seemed way past due, was replace the timing belt, and all of the other doo-dads commonly replaced when doing a timing belt. So, I dove back into Tim and Sean's videos, bought the kit from eBay that was all OEM parts and included the 3 other belts. I also bought new upper and lower radiator hoses. I also wanted to get out the green Prestone and put in the Toyota red coolant/anti-freeze, so I did a flush of the cooling system to start the timing belt replacement job.

While very satisfying, and taking way longer than I expected, I did run into some problems and in essence had to do the job 2-1/2 to 3 times. The first problem, which didn't rear it's head until I was pretty much complete, was I broke a couple of teeth off of the crankshaft gear when trying to get it off. I didn't see a sensor there and thought it would be okay to re-use (first mistake), and later found that the car wouldn't run with the damaged crankshaft gear. The second problem I ran into is when I pretty much had the covers on and everything buttoned up I did a little look of my work area and saw the big washer that goes between the engine and the tensioner pulley. Luckily I was able to loosen the tensioner and the pulley and was able to slide the washer in with the timing belt still in place. That was a surprisingly easy fix of my rookie mess up... even though Timmy's video warns you not to forget the washer. Doh! That's when I buttoned it up and tried to start it. When it died after running for second I had a strong hunch that the broken teeth on the crankshaft gear was the culprit, so I asked here in a thread (Failed Attempt at Timing Belt Replacement), and people agreed that that was probably my problem. So back apart she went. I picked up a new gear (and sadly discovered the Toyota dealership I got it from charges over list price, opposed to Camelback, where I get most parts. I don't want to flame them, which is why I didn't mention the dealer, but will only use them for extreme emergencies), put it in, and then had a new challenge - I had to recompress the tensioner and get the grenade pin back in, as every attempt to get the belt back on with the pulley and tensioner loosened failed. I may have been able to do it, but feared I'd maybe cross-thread something, strip it, and create another problem: so I opted to do it the safe an probably proper way. I used a big vice at work to compress the tensioner, and back at it yesterday afternoon. I got it all put back together, filled the radiator, and yay, it started! Tough job, especially for a complete rookie, and no one there to help me, but as previously mentioned it was very satisfying. However, during my test drive I had the "P0125 - Inufficient Coolant Tempertaure for Closed Loop Fuel Control" code pop up. I had my BlueDriver code reader hooked up the whole time, mostly to monitor coolant temp, so when I got to my destination I cleared the code and it didn't return on my 15 minute drive home. When I go home I tried burping the coolant loop again, so maybe there was a little air trapped in the system. That, or the new thermostat I put in during the timing belt replacement is stuck open. I'll drive it around today to make sure all is okay before turning it back over to my 18 year old daughter.

And that, my friends, is what started my DIY auto repair activity. As others have mentioned, I couldn't have done any of the repairs I mentioned without the help of Tim and Sean's great videos! And... the Sick Mod BBQs Tim hosts are a blast too! I've been to a couple and hope to go to more! Lots of really cool tricked out 4Runners, and great experiences to hear about!

Sorry for the long-winded babble, but as Tim has seen in the many long-winded emails I've sent him, I get a little excited talking about this stuff. Thanks to Tim and Sean, and all of the the people that post and contribute to this forum! Now I need to buy my own 3rd Gen, preferable a '99, and do it all over again on that Runner!
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Old 01-22-2020, 02:37 PM #24
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I started taking things apart at around 3. One of my Dadís favorite stories about me was when I was riding in his Ď68 Mustang, I managed to take apart a chunk of the dashboard. This was around 1978, in Taiwan, so no seatbelt laws, and a 60s Mustang is pretty rare. He bought it from a GI who was returning to the US.

Since then, Iíve always had a fascination of taking things apart and learn about how things work. As a teenager, I loved the cutaway models of cars at car shows, or the cutaway drawings that David Kimble used to draw of exotic cars, like the F40 or the Corvette ZR-1. When I got older and had a car of my own, I started learning about how engines work, and out of necessity (I was a poor high school and college student), I started doing simple maintenance on my own, like oil changes, rotate tires, change the air filter, etc. I did this for my parents as well.

When I bought our first and current house, I insisted that it must have a 3-car garage, because I picture myself doing projects and wrenching on cars in the garage. I can do more now, but Iím still learning. Itís a therapeutic process for me, as I work with high tech stuff all the time at work, so when Iím off, I crave analog and mechanical things. Doing a brake job isnít a hassle for me, as long as I have the time. I still enjoy taking stuff apart, and/or fix something or make it better.

One factor that makes me feel more comfortable about doing some of the work on my own is income. Now that I have a better income than when I was in my 20s, I know if I bugger up something while wrenching, I can afford to have it towed and get it repaired by a professional. It would become an expensive lesson, but a lesson nonetheless. Unless I become physically incapable of doing so, I will always enjoy turning a wrench.
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Old 01-22-2020, 03:17 PM #25
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Like TonyB66, I agree that DIY for home and auto is a must. I've probably saved 10s of thousands of dollars by doing home improvement projects myself.

While the 4runner hasn't really needed much repairs or maintenance, the mods I did would have cost double if I had someone else do it.

For me, the reasons I started DIY was that was the only way I could afford to drive BMWs. I noticed every small thing would start having issues and it would be crazy $$ to go to the dealer to fix it.

Also, I remember being scared of touching the brakes for years and that I had someone else do. Then one day I took it to a shop and they messed it up. So I said to myself I couldn't possibly do worse than these guys. So next time it was due, I did it myself and OMG, it's one of the easiest repairs to do. Once I got over the psychological hump, it was much easier for me to work on other things.
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Old 01-22-2020, 06:10 PM #26
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My story is still more or less at the beginning of Chapter 1. You listed a few categories of people in the video who aren't in a position to do much of their own work, and I'm in one of them. I live in an apartment and don't have a decent space to do any work (or space in my apartment to start storing tools). That being said, I'm hoping to actually have a space to work sometime in 2020, and I fully intend to make use of it once I do. I've watched a lot of your videos and really appreciate that you've aimed them squarely at people like me: very inexperienced with only a few very basic tools to my name, but a real desire to perform more DIY work.

This forum is an absolute gold mine of information and I received a great response from some local members when I put out a request for help. If I can get my 4R in better shape and the timing works out, I look forward to getting up to the Bay Area to thank you and Sean in person and make a much-deserved contribution to the Timmy the Toolman party fund.
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Old 01-22-2020, 07:56 PM #27
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I live in an apartment and don't have a decent space to do any work (or space in my apartment to start storing tools).
I started that way too, on the 23rd floor of an apartment building in Washington DC... with just an open parking lot for vehicles. I did a ton of work in that (and other) parking lots, just doing what I could wrap up in a couple hours. I was never hassled despite lots of talk about being hassled online. That was before I knew anyone/met anyone who was in any better of a situation, within a year I was renting a room in a house and had an actual garage, and several friends had places with off-street parking and/or garages.

As for the tools, you'd be surprised what little you need in the way of tools. I worked as a professional wrench (motorcycles) with just a 3-drawer "Rally" box (typical small hand-held thing). 5 screwdrivers, combo wrenches from 8mm to 19mm, 1/4 and 3/8 sockets and ratchets, and 3 or 4 different pliers. Sometimes having a different tool will make a little easier/faster, but rarely is it needed. I suspect you could have the lions share of the tools needed to work on the 4runner stowed IN the 4runner, in the cubby on the back passenger side.

When you start buying tools, don't buy "kits" (sockets and wrenches excluded), just buy what you need to do the job you want to do. Buy the best you can afford... no clue what the "quality home mechanic" brands are these days as I bought into Snap-on for 50% off (deal they extend to those in trade schools, or Did extend at one time) decades ago.

Point I'm trying to make is where there's a will, there's a way. You don't need a ton of tools, or a special space, to do the types of things a new mechanic will be doing. Especially with the 4runner, where you can easily slide under it without lifting it off the ground.
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Old 01-22-2020, 09:31 PM #28
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My story began with learning the ropes of mechanicship wrenching on my 88 4Runner. Soon after I realized I was able to help friends and family with older, simpler import cars take care of things like tune ups, CV axles, brakes, etc. To this day I enjoy opportunities to help people with things like this. It's especially gratifying to work with someone that is interested but lacks confidence in wrenching themselves. Usually once they see how straightforward wrenching can be for basic repairs they either jump into it themselves or at least become aware that auto mechanics is not a mystery, just an A-to-B logical process. This lets them be more confident even when taking their cars into professional mechanics and protects them from getting hosed.
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Old 01-22-2020, 10:01 PM #29
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DIY Auto Mechanics Can Save You BIG Money

These are all great stories. Here is mine.

My dad died at the VA in 1981, I and my twin brother were 13 years old. In the 70ís sometime as little tikes dad bought a Corolla station wagon and thought it rode too ruff so he being sick from heart attacks had my brother and I remove a leaf from each side thinking it will be better. Well we took it out and then put it back in. It was too bouncy.

After dad died anything we (brother and I) needed to fix we either asked the neighbor or figured it out on our own. Iíll admit we took apart every toy we bought and usually we were able to put it back together again and make it work.

At 14 we bought a 1971 SL350 Honda in three baskets from two people in a Chevy Van that you warn your daughters about. All the parts were there and we got it running in 3 days and were riding it in the corn fields when the mother of the two guys called mom and told her her boys took my brother and I and wanted to give our money back and take the three peach baskets of parts. Mom said weíve been riding that motorcycle for three days now........have had at least one street bike and dirt bike ever since. I even Road raced a 1993 ZX7R for 3 years in the CCS racing series from 95 to 98.

Been screwing with stuff my whole life. We cut grass during middle school and high school making 90 dollars a week in the 80ís. That helped fuel our appetite to buy and fix stuff. We both have been wrenching ever since.

I thought of being an auto mechanic but after working in a junkyard for the summer after graduation I joined the Navy as a GSE.

The 4Runner reminds me of the CJ7. Iím constantly looking for things to tinker with like I did on the CJ. Itís like a hobby or something. Iím still 86CJ74.2L on the Jeep Fourm.

My dad only had a 3rd grade education (born in 1919) but was the smartest person I knew. Plaster, cement work, playing guitar like Chet Atkins and Merl Travis......my hero. I hope Iím half as good as he was.

My brain canít rest until I figure it out. I do like what I do. I feel blessed, not everyone can say that.

I fix stuff....itís my job at work and my hobby at home.

Edit: you can never have enough tools.

Gene


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Old 01-22-2020, 10:57 PM #30
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It's true that if this was my only vehicle and I had no choice but to do the work myself, I could find a way. But my parking area would be difficult to work in. Dark, low ceiling, no power outlet remotely close, and cars so close on both sides that I can't fully open my doors. I'd need a jack, jack stands, and chocks to do most of the work that needs to be done. There are better options for me than slogging through that mess - in fact, I think you were the one who previously suggested I look for a shop with space to work. I found a place not more than an hour away called "Your Dream Garage" that charges $20 an hour for a spot to work, with access to just about anything I'd need. Once I have a little experience and self-confidence I intend to try it out (unless of course I have a garage of my own by then). But even with Tim's videos I'm hesitant to drive there and get things taken apart and then run in to trouble and be stranded an hour or more from home with a partially disassembled 4R and the garage closing up. I could take a chance and go for it, but like I said, there are better options for me.

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Originally Posted by Brian. View Post
I started that way too, on the 23rd floor of an apartment building in Washington DC... with just an open parking lot for vehicles. I did a ton of work in that (and other) parking lots, just doing what I could wrap up in a couple hours. I was never hassled despite lots of talk about being hassled online. That was before I knew anyone/met anyone who was in any better of a situation, within a year I was renting a room in a house and had an actual garage, and several friends had places with off-street parking and/or garages.

As for the tools, you'd be surprised what little you need in the way of tools. I worked as a professional wrench (motorcycles) with just a 3-drawer "Rally" box (typical small hand-held thing). 5 screwdrivers, combo wrenches from 8mm to 19mm, 1/4 and 3/8 sockets and ratchets, and 3 or 4 different pliers. Sometimes having a different tool will make a little easier/faster, but rarely is it needed. I suspect you could have the lions share of the tools needed to work on the 4runner stowed IN the 4runner, in the cubby on the back passenger side.

When you start buying tools, don't buy "kits" (sockets and wrenches excluded), just buy what you need to do the job you want to do. Buy the best you can afford... no clue what the "quality home mechanic" brands are these days as I bought into Snap-on for 50% off (deal they extend to those in trade schools, or Did extend at one time) decades ago.

Point I'm trying to make is where there's a will, there's a way. You don't need a ton of tools, or a special space, to do the types of things a new mechanic will be doing. Especially with the 4runner, where you can easily slide under it without lifting it off the ground.
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