BJ74 - ARB/OME suspension setup advice

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Jul 17, 2013
southern VT
Greetings all -

I finally picked up my truck a few days ago and the adventure has been going great so far! Met some great folks and owe some photos and updates to my other thread, but for now I have a quick decision to make on the suspension setup.

I went with the ARB Dakar OME heavy setup but asked them to remove the 3rd leaf from the rear pack as per some references found here on the board. As it's setup right now I'm a bit surprised how low it is sitting in the back. I've got some gear and stuff in the back, but planning to build a full drawer system, fridge, etc. So maybe another ~150lb in the back. That's 68kg for our metric friends :)

The ride is really good, I've driven it around town and on the highway and up and down a pretty bumpy dirt road and it handles great. I'd like a bit more height in the rear and am even fine with a bit of a rake if needed when not fully loaded. Also really want to put some spacers on so that it looks a bit wider stance but honestly drives well as-is and I went to quite a bit of effort to find the 16" prado rims so I wouldn't have to run them!

FWIW, the rear bumper will on occasion get anything full jerry can and hi lift added to it. The front is setup like it will be minus a LED light bar of obviously negligible weight.

Props to @cruisinoffroad for the armor work and @just differentials for the suspension work.

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You're too quick! Had to upload the photos from my phone.

Yes, the obvious answer is to put the leaf back in and see how it sits/rides. As I am the one who told them to remove it in the first place I'm seeing if any first hand experience could offer something along the lines of:

don't do it, it'll raise it 2" and be very rough

do it! The rear will settle more than the front so you will end up wanting it

Frankly I'm surprised because from my research it sounded like almost everyone was removing a leaf or two. The front bumper is probably the same weight or perhaps even lighter than the OEM front porch. The rear bumper is obviously a good bit heavier than OEM with the 2 swing outs 2 jerry cans and 33" spare and hi lift.
Quit listening to other people - they are all full of poo.....

Having said, that, here's my 2 centavos worth of poo. Yer gonna have a ton of ****e in the rear of the 74. Lash em to the bumper and take em to Portland with ya. Easy to reinstall later.
That's a GREAT looking Cruiser!!

I would add the leaf back in and see what it gets you to. That would be my first step. I have the same suspension in my 70 and with the rear bumper and a bigger spare tire it sits somewhat decent I think

photo 116.JPG

I know it is kind of pain to add the leaf back in, but it will be nice to have the cargo capacity when you go wheeling and camping.

Hope this helps!

Congrats on the Cruiser again!

Another vote to put the leaf back in.
Greetings all -

I finally picked up my truck a few days ago and the adventure has been going great so far! ..

It's a beauty. I love the color combo, including the stripes.
And a box of shotgun shells.

You need air shocks.
They are setup for 'constant load' so if it sags with no load add a leaf, which will be a tad too stiff without a load.
Drawers, water, Puma, 40 l fuel, food, fridge, tools, recovery gear, armor -it adds up quickly. My 74 is 6,200lbs fully loaded for a week in the bush with no support
Looks great Ben, nice change from before!

My 74 has heavies up front and mediums w/ an extra leaf in the rear. My rear has sagged a lot (that doesn't sound right…) and during clean up after our wheeling day I noticed one spring pack is bent.
They've been in the truck for about 6 years, but they've been sagging for a while.

I'm putting heavies in the back. I'd say throw the leaf back in, you've added weight back there and are planning to add more.
FWIW this is how mine looked when the rear bumper first went on, still on 255/85R16s. Pretty similar to yours:
Truck looks great! I'd put the extra leaf back in if I was you.

I like the tall narrow stance with the Prado rims! How do you like the 255/85R16 fitment on the 16x6" rims? Tall narrow trucks are great for tight roads. I like mine as I can run many quad trails with it. Only problem is how scary feeling it is when off camber. Haven't tipped yet though...although I thought for sure I would a couple times.
First off the truck turned out great!

I had to remove my 3rd leaf but I don't have the swing out bumper on mine, just the stock flimsy one. That extra weight of the bumper is what makes the difference of needing the extra leaf. If you think the rear is low now then you will want to get the leaf in before you build the drawer system. Either way you start, with or with out the leaf it's nice to have the option of tuning the leaf pack down the road.
great looking rig.
Now lets see some close ups of that ass end!
Karter you should use that as a pick up line the next time you are in a bar. :)
Is the exhaust hanger supposed to be attached to the exhaust? Or does it just rest there in place?

After bouncing down off the mountain today, made a right turn back on the main road and heard the exhaust smacking into the passenger rear tire.


I removed the rubber bumper from the frame and it looks like it just sits in place and is not permanently attached to the exhaust? Pushed it back into place so won't make any hard right turns for the time being!

It is a rectangular rubber block with metal stud plates vulcanized on opposite sides. Yours is broken.

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