Builds My Cruiser build - aka HIPPO80

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May 24, 2012
Sacramento, CA
Hello everyone,

I started this thread on Expedition Portal, not too much action there. Figure Id share with you guys.

Some background on my current LC build aka Hippo

Recently sold my 1992 Land Cruiser. Loved everything about it (except power and fuel mileage). It was my first Toyota 4x4. The thing had 260K and was unbelievably stout and reliable vehicle. Had great times with it, but felt like it was time to move on. After all it was my temporary rig while I worked on converting my Montero to SAS and dual cases.

So back to no truck, at least no truck that drives.

Here are some pics of my old cruiser

Well, sometime later a buddy of mine called to let me know that his grandma had a broken "old" 90s cruiser parked in her driveway which she no longer cared for. They owned the truck for about 7 years which was passed down from a friend of theirs who was a pharmaceutical tycoon that had it since new. The car has never seen offroad in its entire life :/

Long story short the truck is a 1994, 190K on the clock fully loaded with lockers. I didn't pay much because they just wanted the thing out of their driveway.
It had minor body imperfections. oh and it wasn't drivable because from what I was told something blew on the freeway. Engine ran fine but had scary noises coming from the front axle.

I towed the truck back home. I was hoping to find a broken birfield.
After tearing apart the front axle I found out that most of the diff fluid leaked out, which overheated the diff which eventually grenaded the ring and pinion while the truck was on the freeway.

I knew I wanted to build something more capable. So I decided it do complete regear. Local shop in Sacramento gave me a great deal on a set of 5.29, new seals and bearings. The journals on the front diff had to be machined because it got so hot that it spun a bearing.

This is how it arrived at the shop.

Goal for the truck:
Catch up on maintenance
3link front
Longer upper and lower arms for the rear
37" tires
Crawler gears
Build front and rear bumpers, sliders and accessories
Must be driven to trail and back

Here are some progress pics.

Diffs are out

this is where most of the fluid leaked out

alot of cleanup

off to the gear shop

Ordered complete front seal and bearings set from Cruiser Outfitters

Diffs are all done. Look like new.

Painted knuckle and steering components. Putting everything back together.

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Looks great. Keep the pictures comin. Looking forward to see how it all turns out.
Got the lowers mounts welded up.

Ruff stuff heims are no joke

Shortened frame mounts for the lower links

started working on the towers. Shout out to @jcardona1 for the tip on putting these in.

Channeled the driver tower to make room for the steering shaft

Cut out some of the sheet metal. Tacked the towers into place for now

Nice. You eurosonic on Instagram also?
Nice. Did you abandon the Montero? If not, I bet you will when this is done! Sick.
Badass. Keep up the good work D!
Are you going to be able to squeeze a nut back behind that mount and the frame?? I know pictures don't always look right but it sure looks tight.

The plate is threaded on frame side. Bolts up directly to the plate.

Badass. Keep up the good work D!

thanks, gotta hit the trails with you when done.
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