Part III: Buildup Of A '94 Land Crusier FZJ80
In part one we discussed the scope of the project and the installation of the Hanna Quality rock sliders. Part two highlighted the installation of the ARB air snorkel, ARB front bumper, Warn M12000 winch, and 4x4 Labs rear bumper.
Part three brings us back to Slee Off-Road for some more wrenching. Slee Off-Road is well known for its staff's expertise in modifying 80- and 100-series Land Cruisers. This month, the boys installed a Slee 6-inch suspension lift, CV Unlimited Birfields and inner axles, ARB Air Lockers front and rear, and 4.88 Sierra Gear gears from West Coast Differentials.
The Slee Off-Road 6-inch kit consists of: front and rear coil springs, Old Man Emu shocks, a steering damper, front control arms with urethane bushings, a double-Cardan front driveshaft, front and rear sway-bar drop brackets, 2-inch front and rear bumpstop drop blocks, stainless steel extended brake lines, front and rear Panhard bars, adjustable upper rear coil arms, diff breather extensions, and an emergency-brake-cable drop bracket. We decided on this lift because it will clear 35-inch BFGoodrich A-T tires with no additional modifications, but what we really want is to run 37-inch tires on Project 80. This will be accomplished by modifying the wheelwells to accept the larger tires. The 80-series Land Cruiser wheelwells fit a 35-inch tire perfectly. Unfortunately, to squeeze a 37-inch tire in there, we'll need to cut into the wheelwells or install longer bumpstops. Our ultimate goal for Project 80 is for it to be a dual-purpose vehicle: We want to do high-speed expedition-type wheeling in addition to slow-speed rockcrawling. With this dual-purpose objective in mind, lowering the bumpstops any farther would seriously decrease suspension uptravel. This is why we will cut away at the wheelwells rather than lower the bumpstops. This modification will be covered in a future issue.
Since we eventually want to run 37-inch tires, we need to address the axles. The stock axles are able to handle tire sizes up to 35 inches without any problems - depending, of course, on your driving style. If you use your head and stay off the skinny pedal, your axles will survive just fine with 35s. Since we plan on running 37s, we contacted CV Unlimited about its Newfield 4340 chrome-moly Birfields and its 4340 chrome-moly inner axleshafts. CV Unlimited does a couple of things to increase the strength of these components. The internal parts are redesigned, and the cage is made using a patented dome design. The comp-onents are cryogenically stabilized, through-hardened, and heat-treated using a proprietary formula designed for rockcrawling. These parts are also backed by CV Unlimited's lifetime warranty.