The Mother-In-Law... Build thread, Intro, and request for guidance ('03 LX470) (1 Viewer)

Ramathorn15

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I read through the instructions you emailed me, and it makes sense. Every time I think I have a clever idea it turns out someone already did it! Thanks for sending those. Per your diagram above, the switch essentially just completes the ground circuit as you mentioned in your previous explanation of the fact that the puddle lights are ground switched. So, in theory, if I complete that ground then the lights will come on. I think the only thing I'd want to do is a throw a relay into the mix, but as you have noted that complicates things since everything is ground switched. The rock lights I got are from Pro Comp, and there are 6 of them with 3 LED diodes per light. I don't think they came with a relay in the wiring harness, which indicates to me that the amount of current going through the switch they provide isn't very much (or at least not more than the switch can handle). I wonder if I could get away with doing this as simple as you laid out above and just tap the factory ground and run it to a grounded switch, and then wire the lights to the factory harness. I'm not real keen on that just because I'd like to have a relay handling the current, but maybe the lights aren't pulling enough power for it to be an issue? Are the DS and PS factory wires on independent circuits?

Just make sure the switch is rated for 10 amps as is the fuse for the lights. The driver and passenger are tied together, so if you tap the driver, both sides will come on.
 

CPC

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Just make sure the switch is rated for 10 amps as is the fuse for the lights. The driver and passenger are tied together, so if you tap the driver, both sides will come on.
So that's kind of tempting then. I'll check the inline fuse on the wiring harness and see what it is rated for. That would allow me to keep the courtesy light function and turn on the rock lights independently.
 

CPC

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I had the bumpers and rock sliders blasted and dropped them off at powder coating. I think the color will be a little darker, but it's going to look good IMO.

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CPC

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It wasn't light! Actually, the front bumper weighs less than I thought it would, and the rear bumper is heavier than I thought it would be. What was really surprising was the weight of the sliders. I think one slider weighs nearly as much as the front bumper! Definitely beefy.
 

CPC

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Bumpers and steps are back from powdercoat. They almost look black in these pictures, but they are actually Kingsport Grey from Prismatic Powders. I think they are going to harmonize nicely with the color of the truck. I mounted some Rigid reverse lights in the bumper blanks, and then put the ProComp rock lights on the corners of the front and rear bumper. Unfortunately I forgot to weld a bracket to the underside of the side steps for the step lights, so I'll have to come up with something for that. I know @Ramathorn15 has brackets that attach to the AHC, but I would have to modify them anyway for the ProComp lights, so I will probably just weld a tab to frame.

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I got a few things done at the house since I didn't want to drive to the shop today. Pinch weld mod (relief cut, then hammer it over and squirt some paint on it), then removed the running boards. Who in the heck designed the rear, upper mounting bolts on these boards?! Not having a swivel head ratchet made the removal far more difficult, but I finally got them off.
I'm pretty pleased with the way the new shoes fit. Plenty of room for normal driving. I'm curious to see if it ever rubs, but from what I can tell there is plenty of room.

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Looks Great! I wish my job didn't get in the way of working on my rig. Plan to complete the pinch weld mod this weekend.

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CPC

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Looks Great! I wish my job didn't get in the way of working on my rig. Plan to complete the pinch weld mod this weekend.

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Great looking rig! Yeah, those pesky jobs can definitely get in the way of fun times tinkering with toys. What size tire are you running? Does it rub on the pinch weld currently? After doing the mod there is tons of space in there. I almost think I could have just trimmed the fender liner and not done the mod, but maybe not.
 
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Great looking rig! Yeah, those pesky jobs can definitely get in the way of fun times tinkering with toys. What size tire are you running? Does it rub on the pinch weld currently? After doing the mod there is tons of space in there. I almost think I could have just trimmed the fender liner and not done the mod, but maybe not.
285/70/r17. They just barely rub the fender liner depending how hard of turn I'm making. Next big project is fine tuning the AHC. I also went with metal tech sliders which arrive next week and sent off for powder coat.
 

CPC

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The metal tech sliders are HEAVY. Very well made for sure. I'd throw them on before you do the AHC tuning. Not that 200lbs of additional weight will be that significant, but it seems like it would be best to have it loaded as you intend to typically run it before tuning the AHC.
 
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Great looking rig! Yeah, those pesky jobs can definitely get in the way of fun times tinkering with toys. What size tire are you running? Does it rub on the pinch weld currently? After doing the mod there is tons of space in there. I almost think I could have just trimmed the fender liner and not done the mod, but maybe not.
I'm going to use a heat gun to remold the fender liner since it barely rubs and see if that does the trick
 
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CPC

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Well after messaging the plastic down with a heat gun, I'm still getting a little rub when fully turned. It seems I will need to complete the pinch weld mod.
The pinch weld mod isn't tough, but you do have to bang on it pretty good with a small sledge. I used a 5lb sledge and it worked pretty good. I did the relief cut about 6" from the bottom, but I'm not sure that's needed. I know some people do it with the tires on the truck, but I found there was just enough room with them off the truck. Made getting the right angle of attack much easier not having the tires in the way.
 
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This is exactly right. Except, your back won’t droop. Even with tons of weight. It’s controlled by the height sensor and kept ‘leveled’ until there’s too much weight and then rising pressures in the system can’t compensate and so it eliminates High mode. Then, with even more weight, it won’t go into N anymore. This can be avoided by keeping your pressures in spec by adding spacers or stronger springs or both. A traditional 2” lift suspension gets loaded up for a trip and sags back down, losing height. AHC doesn’t sag but it can be overloaded and you can lose your ability to raise height. Some people like airbags for occasional heavy loads but I have no experience with them.
I can vouch for this! As the kids pile in, the suspension compresses, then lifts back up. This work great until we pile in an extra 400 lbs of camping gear, then off road for 4 weeks over the summer. Turn the truck off, then unload, and you get an instant 5” lift!
 

CPC

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Bumpers, sliders, winch and lights installed. Need to finish the wiring for the lights, but everything is bolted into place. The only hang up is with the turn and brake indicators in the rear bumper. This bumper is obviously for an LC, but this is an LX. The wire they are telling you to grab off the truck to hook up the lights in the bumper isn't in the same place as it says in the instructions. We haven't dropped the spare tire to look yet, but anyone know where to wire in the lights from the bumper?

Also got my center caps from Ben. These look great, and should help cover the front hub. I think I'll sand and paint them satin black though.

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Bumpers, sliders, winch and lights installed. Need to finish the wiring for the lights, but everything is bolted into place. The only hang up is with the turn and brake indicators in the rear bumper. This bumper is obviously for an LC, but this is an LX. The wire they are telling you to grab off the truck to hook up the lights in the bumper isn't in the same place as it says in the instructions. We haven't dropped the spare tire to look yet, but anyone know where to wire in the lights from the bumper?

Also got my center caps from Ben. These look great, and should help cover the front hub. I think I'll sand and paint them satin black though.

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@CPC
Your truck looks great and love that tire and wheel combo. I’ve had Toyo MTs in the past on a Jeep Wrangler and liked them a lot, but how has the road noise been thus far on the LX?
Thx,
Dave
 

CPC

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@CPC
Your truck looks great and love that tire and wheel combo. I’ve had Toyo MTs in the past on a Jeep Wrangler and liked them a lot, but how has the road noise been thus far on the LX?
Thx,
Dave
Thanks! Toyo MTs aren't bad unless you don't rotate them every 5K miles, and by 20,000 miles they are typically a bit louder than I'd like regardless of rotation. It's a gradual progression over time, so one day you just end up realizing your tires are noisier than you want. I typically run them for about 15,000 miles, then put on a new set and sell the old set on CL. This allows for enough tread life left on the tire for them to be of interest to someone on the used market, and I get a decent amount of money selling them (1/3-1/2 the cost of new). So, instead of running them until they are bald I sell them while they have value, and I get new, quiet tires.

In regards to specifically on the LX, you can hear them a little bit more than the Michellin LTX I took off, but they certainly aren't bad. Plus, they are brand new so they are as quiet right now as they will ever be. It kind of depends on your sensitivity to tire noise I suppose. I daily drive an F450 on Toyo Mts, so I'm pretty used to a little tire noise.
 
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Bumpers, sliders, winch and lights installed. Need to finish the wiring for the lights, but everything is bolted into place. The only hang up is with the turn and brake indicators in the rear bumper. This bumper is obviously for an LC, but this is an LX. The wire they are telling you to grab off the truck to hook up the lights in the bumper isn't in the same place as it says in the instructions. We haven't dropped the spare tire to look yet, but anyone know where to wire in the lights from the bumper?

Also got my center caps from Ben. These look great, and should help cover the front hub. I think I'll sand and paint them satin black though.

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Loving the way the powder color turned out!

And way to think ahead with the rear bumper mounted rigids, the front bumper rigids tucked in, and the super discreet rock lights on the side fender.

Those BAja design spots speak for themselves 😎. Truck is looking very cohesive.
 

CPC

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Loving the way the powder color turned out!

And way to think ahead with the rear bumper mounted rigids, the front bumper rigids tucked in, and the super discreet rock lights on the side fender.

Those BAja design spots speak for themselves 😎. Truck is looking very cohesive.
Thanks! We tied the rock lights into the factory running board harness so they come on when you unlock the truck with the key remote. They will also be switched so that they can be turned on with a rocker switch. Going to tap into the factory harness at the driver's kick panel to do that thanks to @Ramathorn15 sending me the connectors I needed and sending me wiring info on how to do it. There are rock lights at all four corners, and under the middle of the sliders. They give off a nice perimeter light.

I knew I was going to want some additional lighting while driving on the street, so I threw the SAE compliant Rigids into the slot that I assume is for additional cooling if the ARB bumper was installed on a diesel model. They JUST fit in the slot, and I had my guys weld a bracket deep inside that slot so we had something to mount the lights on. I won't really have Left/Right adjustability, but I can at least aim them in terms of height. I run those lights on a couple of other trucks and like how they supplement the stock headlights.

The only thing I didn't think ahead on was the size of the Baja Designs lights, and whether they would fit on the tab that was already on the ARB bumper. They are too big to slide back enough to actually use the hole in that tab, so we had to drill a hole a little farther forward so the light would clear the upper bar. Not a huge deal, but still bummed I missed thinking ahead on that when I had planned out everything else already. Doing all of those things before powdercoat was my goal, but that one slipped by me.

I'm really pleased with the color combo. It's not an exact match to the truck, but it is close enough that it harmonizes really well.

There is still some wiring left to do, but it's getting close to being done in terms of fun add ons. I got a scan tool so I can read AHC pressures since my Mac Book refuses to load VB so I can run Techstream. I plan to get the current readings, flush the AHC, get the pressure readings again and then determine the next course of action. It doesn't look bad like it sits, but I think it would look just a touch better if it was a little taller. I'll probably do the sensor lift depending on the pressures I find as it sits now that it's loaded up with bumpers, etc.
 

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