94... there is a metal shield. I hate the thing.... little rocks tend to get stuck in it and rattle around driving me crazy.
On a positive note I finally settled on the ARB bar after talking with Christo about ARB vs. the Slee bumper. Its installed and I'm loving it...and it looks fantasic with the ARB+black flares+Slee rear bumper. Of course we don't care about such things... so long as its functional.
You might want to watch those cats. If I'm not mistaken you do not have an OBDII system. Hot cats are usually the first sign of becoming plugged. In an OBDII system there is an O2 sensor fore and aft of the cats to see this condition. In yours it is blind to that.
BTW the second sign is usually either burnt valves or fail head gasket.
I've heard that others have installed a heat shield type material under the right side carpet. Some of that foil + insulation material. Maybe check availability at race shops. At least it helps keep the heat out of the cabin.
It was actually a very a tough decision. I would have gone with the Slee bumper, but the wildlife factor played a big part. Lots of deer around here. I also wanted the option of running big lights like Hella 4000s. The ARB provides better protection and has enough room for bigger lights, but at the expense of approach angle, and iof course the unique factor... Everyone has an ARB, that makes Christo's a bit cooler. I'm happy with my choice though... and I'm relieved to have finally decided on one. :G
Is there a way to tell if it is pluged or getting there?
The 94 doesn't have the rear o2 sensor.
What problems would there be if I just cleaned out the cats with a long big punch? Is there a need for back presure from the cats for the motor to run right? What damage would there be to the motor?
You might be in the minority but you definitely are not alone. Many have reported heat on the PS floor from the cats, especially on the 91-92 models. I believe later models came with more insulation and maybe better heat shields. Later models also have dual inline cats.
How's my gas mileage? Brutal but not hugely out of line with others. Converted into usg it's about 9.5 mpg in winter on a five3 mile stop and start daily commute, and up to 14.5 on a straight highway run.
In Australia the 1FZ doesn't have cats nor EGR. I can't see why I couldn't remove them as I don't have a rear o2 sensor. The hard part will be making test tubes. Could put a bar through the cats but it will be very$$$ to replace them. Maybe a after market cat could be used and relocate it down stream. Like a place where it wont get crushed. What could go wrong not having the cats?
"Under federal law, the maximum fine for removing a catalytic converter from a vehicle is $2,750 per vehicle. The person who was responsible for taking the catalyst off would also be required to put an appropriate catalyst back on."
They can easily find out who the PO was. Lying to a federal officer might bring additional penalties. I doubt that any "EPA police" would ever find out or that they would enforce the maximum fine. However, it *is* the law of the land.