Builds LXColorado Builds the Mako

Discussion in '100-Series Cruisers' started by LXColorado, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    As it sits today...

    The Mako... Where did the name come from? Well, I won't lie. It's nothing fancy. I was fan of the Mass Effect video game series, and in it was a rover called the Mako you would use to explore other worlds. It could also go anywhere - it was unstoppable. So, the name is two-fold. It symbolizes exploration and adventure, and Land Cruiser's prowess off-road.

    31.jpg

    32.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  2. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    My journey to building the Mako started when I came back to Colorado after my Marine Corps service. While I was stationed in California, I owned a Porsche Boxster. It was prefect for that state, and I truly enjoyed it. But as I quickly realized, a RWD sports car in CO winters doesn't work. I sold the Porsche, bought a 2005 Land Rover LR3 V8, and got to work exploring Colorado. The LR3 was a great intro SUV for me. It had enough off-road capability for me to get my feet wet, and it had everything I needed at the time. One of the great features was the sheer amount of room it had. All the seats folded flat and I was never cramped sleeping in the back. But all good things come to an end.... late one night coming home I hit a deer going ~ 50 mph. I learned how expensive Land Rovers are to fix. Between both airbags deploying, a broken windshield, and surprisingly little front body damage, it was cheaper to junk it than to repair (about $10,000).

    Here was the green machine on top of Mosquito "No-Pass", as we called it. Shortly after this picture we tried to cross a snow bank that was a little too deep, and got high centered only to be rescued by a Land Cruiser and a winch :)

    1.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    dubyahard likes this.
  3. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Enter the life-changing event of owning a Land Cruiser. I actually was searching for an LR4 before I stumbled upon a used LX470 at the same dealership. I test drove it, and really enjoyed it! One problem right out the gate was the broken AHC. I was able to work out a deal with the dealership to fully swap the AHC with an Old Man Emu, instead of them fixing the AHC. In hindsight, I'm glad I did that. I would eventually throw more weight on the Mako than I would have been comfortable with, with AHC. After waiting about 2 weeks for the dealer to source the OME parts and swap the AHC, the Mako was mine!

    2.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    05JLX470, bozncsurf and krice118 like this.
  4. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    First up: base lining. After checking the undercarriage, and finding ZERO rust, I proceeded to change all the fluids (minus brakes and steering fluid).

    3.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    05JLX470, bozncsurf and allan man like this.
  5. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    I finished the base line just in time for a trip to Zion NP with a buddy. Being used to a Land Rover, I was hesitant for such a long trip right away, but this was my first taste of Toyota reliability. No issues on the almost 1000 mile trip. While there, I managed some light wheeling on BLM land. What an awesome trip. GO TO ZION IF YOU HAVEN'T BEEN!

    4.JPG

    5.JPG

    6.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  6. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    The Mako's first battle wound. I'm ashamed to say this was on a Land Cruiser's primary purpose of mall cruising ;) Someone backed into me while I was trying to find a parking spot. A little elbow grease and some bungee cords, and she's back in action.

    7.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  7. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    The Mako stayed in this form for most of the Spring. The Toyo Open Country's and OME suspension were plenty for 99% of the trails I visited!

    8.JPG

    9.JPG

    10.JPG

    11.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    bozncsurf and Justinfro like this.
  8. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    As time went on, however, I realized I needed to air down (which I wasn't doing), and needed more tire to more effectively get over obstacles. Enter some 16" LX wheels. I purchased these from another Denver LX'er that upgraded to 18's. I threw on some Goodyear Duratracs. I had these on my LR3, and liked them for their capability in snow and trails.

    12.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  9. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    More tire was definitely better! My first trek on the 16"s was Red Cone Pass. Now, I did this trip solo, and that was a mistake. On the last uphill before reaching the top, there's a gnarly boulder section. I ended up high centering a bit, and had to stack rocks to get over the obstacle - NOT fun above 12,000ft. I cleared it, but not without slamming and bending a rear control arm! 10/10, would recommend.

    13.JPG

    14.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  10. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    I replaced the plastic heater T's with brass ones, and replaced the hoses while I was in there.

    At this point in time, I had a handheld pump that would run off a 12v cigarette outlet. It took FOREVER to re-inflate the tires after airing them down. Slee was having a deal, where you'd get a second battery tray with the purchase of an ARB twin compressor. SOLD. I didn't need a second battery at that point, but it seconded as a mount for the compressor.

    Around the same time, I tried a quick disconnect on the front sway bar. I was spending quite a bit of time on dirt roads and wheeling, so the disconnected sway bar made everything smoother.

    Lastly, I built an impromptu, and very short-lived, attic system. Prior to having drawers, I wanted to clean up the rear. I ended up taking it down because it made noise like crazy.

    15.JPG

    17.JPG

    16.JPG

    18.JPG

    20.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    viducce likes this.
  11. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    More pictures of adventures in CO....

    21.JPG

    23.JPG

    25.JPG

    27.JPG
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    viducce, TheForger and bozncsurf like this.
  12. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    As fun as the 16"s and duratracs were, they really dated the look of the truck. I saw some pictures of Tundra TRD wheels on the forum, and decided to pull the trigger on a local set. It's amazing how many Tundra owners are selling their TRD wheels. For the tires.... I have read enough on iH8MUD to know about KO2's, and let me tell you, they are worth the price of admission. Super quiet on road, and fantastic off road.

    More info/pics on Tundra wheels and fitment found here!

    Also added around this time was a Safari snorkel, hood blackout, and the red stripe.
    28.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  13. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Saved #13

    EDIT: For some reason, the forum isn't letting me reach my older posts through my profile. It's having me manually search and sift through threads individually. Hopefully, this is temporary. I'm trying to get pictures of the ARB front, ARB Drawers, Slee Sliders, and Slee Armor for the saved slots...
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
  14. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Saved #14
     
  15. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Saved #15
     
  16. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Saved #16
     
  17. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    I was delaying installing the Slee rear bumper for a good while. The price tag is definitely off-putting. But after assembling it, it's easier to understand the price justification. This thing is a TANK. It also comes standard with the tire carrier and ladder. The ladder itself has a ton of accessory options, as well. As a friendly piece of advice, have some jacks and another helping hand. I installed it by myself (it's doable), but I wouldn't recommend it.

    29.jpg

    30.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    viducce, Ca lc, old5chool and 2 others like this.
  18. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Someday I will get the ARB Intensity lights, but these Warn lights were too good to pass up (Slee had them on sale). They are HID's with a blueish-white light, but the main selling point for me was the wireless on/off remote! I didn't have to do any serious wiring until I'm ready for the Intensity lights.

    31.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2018
    Justinfro and bozncsurf like this.
  19. krice118

    krice118

    Messages:
    1,359
    Likes Received:
    900
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    Location:
    Milano
    I was searching for more info on your build yesterday! I love those TRD wheels on your LX. I would love to learn more about the Quick Disconnect for the Front Sway bar
    Have you joined Rising Sun 4x4 in Denver?
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2018
  20. LXColorado

    LXColorado

    Messages:
    157
    Likes Received:
    538
    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Location:
    Colorado
    Thank you! The TRD wheels really update the 100 series, IMO. Really, the only crappy part was buying the spare wheel from Toyota, because Tundra's apparently don't come with a full size spare. I paid more for one wheel at the dealership than the four all together.

    About the quick disco... I removed the bolt holding the sway bar links, and drilled out a 3/8" hole so I could fit the 3/8" metal clasp. Copy and paste for both sides. I bought a rubber strap with s-hooks on the end to hold the sway bar up and out of the way, when disconnected. The real advantage is felt on washboard, and rock crawling. It makes everything smoother as the left and right IFS are actually independent from each other. I haven't noticed any wobbling or clanking from the front sway bar when it's reconnected for on-road use.

    I've heard about it, but no I haven't joined! Are you a member?
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.