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Old 05-05-2024, 04:39 PM #1
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2nd Gen Restoration / Overland Build

I've been wanting to start this thread for so long...

About 6 years ago, I bought a 94 4Runner. It had a roof basket, bull bar, a Northwest Metal Products extended fuel tank above the spare, no lift, and worn out 33" tires that rubbed. With the help of this forum, I sorted out the suspension right away and added OME springs, shocks, and front ball joint spacers. Also found a set of locking hubs and refurbished them. I added some euro spec H4 headlight housings, LED headlight bulbs, DRL flashbacks for the turn signals, and a CB radio. Otherwise, the truck stayed like that for a couple years. It was just my fun beach truck, and it went on a couple camping and overland trips.








But I had a vision...

I always wanted to build the truck the right way so that it could take me anywhere. I've learned that part of the territory that comes with being in my 40s is the need for a project vehicle 🤣

When COVID came, I found the first little spot of rust on the body near the rear wheel well as well as some fading clear coat all over. I knew it was time! I started tearing the truck apart and started addressing the tiny paint bubbles. The cancer ran just a little deeper though.





Those plastic dog bones are the worst. All they do is catch dirt behind them and rot out everything you can't see! I would unscrew yours today and have a look underneath. Once the screws are all out, you have to slide the thing up to disengage the 2 plastic clips behind it. The bottom will bend out enough to clear the rocker.

Over the next few months, I started getting the parts I would need. A snorkel was in order since there are a few river crossings in WV where I camp. Another of those was the tire carrier. I found a complete assembly on eBay, and I snatched it up.

I messaged the owner, and I found out that he was parting out a non-running 4Runner that he bought to complete his son's pickup interior. He was able to cut out what was for me the holy grail part - the internal frame pieces for the carrier! I also took the original tailgate with all of its internal bracing! Unfortunately, there was just no way to get the frame piece in and around the interior body frame member through the inside, so since I had to weld some sheet metal anyway, I got busy cutting out the side of the body.







Obviously, it was my first time welding such thin metal 😬 I quickly became an expert with the grinder hahaha!

I also had to do some modifications on the bull bar to accept my new fog lights.





And, since nobody makes a roof rack for 2nd Gens, I had to design one myself. I found a decent 3D file of my truck online and went about creating a Prinsu style rack in CAD, made a paper template, and mocked it up in wood to make sure everything would fit. If you're wondering about the familiar looking symbol on the back, I've been a DJ for a long time, so I added a 45 rpm adapter cutout.

I have the CAD file still, and I can get it to you if you PM me (minus that cutout). All you would need to add are the mounting feet and 42-48 inch crossbars from 8020.net or tnutz.com.

I ended up using off the shelf mounting feet from the Sherpa Matterhorn rack for 3rd Gens. Head to their Components page for the feet. Anyway, I ended up having to cut the mid mount and bolt it together to work with the slightly different roof lines vs. the 3rd gen - I'll see if I have a pic floating around or will just take a new one soon. Then, I sent the files out to get the side pieces cut from aluminum at a place in Lebanon, PA called Laserfab. They were amazing to work with!!





Then I got busy with buying a house (with a shed-sized “garage” 😒), a new business, life, and all of the other projects a person with ADHD has. My baby just sat, waiting for some love and attention for almost 4 years! That is until this February when I finally got back to work on it!!

You can follow my build thread here. The truck is 98% done right now, so there is much more to come as soon as I have the time to post everything!

Since I'm about to set off on a pretty big adventure, I also started an @OceansOverland thread on Instagram.

I'm leaving from Assateague Island, Maryland in less than a week with my dog, Ryker, to overland the US, literally from ocean to ocean, and also have an OceansOverlandUSA vlog on YouTube. The page is up, but there's only one short posted so far. I'll start posting videos of my travels there in about a week. I would love it if you subscribe and follow along with me!
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1994 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4WD 3.Slow Auto
Youtube: OceansOverlandUSA Instagram: @OceansOverland
toyota-4runner.org: Official Build Thread
Setting out on a big trip Spring 2024! More to follow soon!
PM me for link to 94 Factory Service & Electrical Manual
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Old 05-05-2024, 04:46 PM #2
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__________________
1994 Toyota 4Runner SR5 4WD 3.Slow Auto
Youtube: OceansOverlandUSA Instagram: @OceansOverland
toyota-4runner.org: Official Build Thread
Setting out on a big trip Spring 2024! More to follow soon!
PM me for link to 94 Factory Service & Electrical Manual
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