2003 Tundra

#1
Followed me home tonight. 2003 Tundra Limited, Access Cab, 4.7V8, 140k miles, good shape, Nitto Trail Grappler tires, hard bed cover, slide in bed liner. Stock other than that. Very nice driving comfortable truck.
Plans? Plans?! You ask??!?!??!!
I have to mount a winch. That much I know so I can still work around the property. Other than that this will be a learning experience. We will be mounting our Northstar MC 600 camper in it, so a few mods there. As far as off road capability I am leaning away from anything that will change on road driving characteristics, and focusing on small improvements where needed.... so he says... time will tell. I am new to the Toyota off road world. Many questions coming your way to be sure.

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#8
Pic with the step removed... More better
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Ordered some new ubolts today for the rear axle. The weirdest thing on this truck is there are places underneath that look brand new like factory and others that are rusted pretty bad, like the ubolts. I am just going to cut them off and replace. Same will go for a few other areas, such as the bolt/spring that holds up the spare... though I might have to fab up something myself after I cut that thing off.
 
#9
Pic with the step removed... More better
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Ordered some new ubolts today for the rear axle. The weirdest thing on this truck is there are places underneath that look brand new like factory and others that are rusted pretty bad, like the ubolts. I am just going to cut them off and replace. Same will go for a few other areas, such as the bolt/spring that holds up the spare... though I might have to fab up something myself after I cut that thing off.
Were these part of the whole "frame rust" thing like the Tacomas? Could the frame have been cleaned at some point?
 

Grumps

Adventurist
Founding Member
#10
The frame may have been replaced. The Tundras were part of the rusted frame replacement. @Haggis can shed more light on that process, he went through a frame replacement on his Tundra.

That is a great looking truck. I couldn't find one in that good of condition before I bought the Land Cruiser.

-Andy
 
#11
Were these part of the whole "frame rust" thing like the Tacomas? Could the frame have been cleaned at some point?
Yes this was the era of frame rust. It has not been replaced. I have patched one spot already and that seems to be the only area on the frame of any issue. There are a few other areas of concern, but they are like the ubolts, something I can cut off and just replace. Ubolts first so I can mount Timbren SES or the airbags I am waiting to hear back from Haggis about.
 
#12
The frame may have been replaced. The Tundras were part of the rusted frame replacement. @Haggis can shed more light on that process, he went through a frame replacement on his Tundra.

That is a great looking truck. I couldn't find one in that good of condition before I bought the Land Cruiser.

-Andy
Thanks Andy. So far I am pleased. Remarkably few things to fiddle with for a 14 year old truck. I am still of the mind that a winch is in order, but that is for work around the property. I often used my jeep a lot like a tractor, helping with trees and wood collection duty. This truck is going to have to pull that same duty. I am trying to hold off on suspension (although I think it could go up a couple inches even with keeping the same tires and look great) and skid plates until I understand a bit more about these trucks.
Primary focus is getting it ready to tote the camper and make sure it is sound for trips.
 
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Haggis

Adventurist
Senior Staff
Editor
Founding Member
#14
I am waiting to hear back from Haggis about.
I responded John, busy weekend. If you have any questions feel free to bend my ear.

Suspension...I'd stay under 2.5 inches of lift as when you go higher you start having to deal with diff drops and custom A arms not to mention more extreme alignment settings. 285s work good at 2.5 but you will need rims with 4" of backspacking (-12mm offset) to keep them off the A arms. Also on an AC you need to do the BFH mod to the pinch welds in the front wheel wells and possibly lose the front factory mudflaps. At 1.5 to 2 inches of lift you will have less problems with half shaft boot wearing and you can run 265/70/17s or 255/85/16s.

Skid Row makes a full set of skid plates for the Tundra and they are very well built and easy to mount up. That's what I ran on Fafhrd.

ARB makes a winch bumper for the AC Tundra as well as Brute Force.
 
#15
Great info, especially on the lifts. Thanks Mark! I am thinking I will aim for the 255's with the 1.5 - 2" lift when these Nittos wear out.
 
#16
Installed Timbren SES today to help with tail dragging when the camper is loaded. As mentioned earlier I picked up some new ubolts and cut the old ones off due to rust. The ubolt plates got cleaned up with the wire brush on the grinder and painted with rust inhibitor and then enamel.
There are mixed reviews on the Timbrens but I am a fan of simplicity, so I want to try these out first and only go to air bags if needed. Also got some 10ga wire strung for mounting a 12v power source back near the tailgate. Then Joe diverted my attention to begin a project for Ann's upcoming birthday.
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#17
Well, it's all over now... first hole drilled into the truck. Maybe somehow speaks to my changing ideas of modifications that this is simply a 12v power source to the rear bumper... I am working on a special project that will help when the camper is loaded... so more to come, hopefully be done this weekend sometime, although I do have to work.
So here it is, a Bluesea 12v receptacle in the bumper:
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#20
Can not beat the 03 Tundras. I had mine new off the lot 2 miles on it, now 142,000.
Just about what I have on mine at this point...

Always a believer in skid plates and the ability to self recover as first level modifications... although I am dealing with a limited funding for the project... it is time to get started.

Just ordered the front and engine skid plates from Skid Row. I could not swing ordering the whole set. I was heading towards ordering the tcase skid, when I looked underneath just to be sure that's what needed it the most and saw the radiator and the oil filter poking out waiting to get ripped off by a stick or stump or something... so front it was. Then when ordering thought I would save a bit on shipping and order the engine also.

I have also been looking at bumper/winch mounting options. Not a lot out there for 1st gen tundras. I am leaning a bit towards the Warn Transformer system, or the addicted off road plate style... the tube style is a lot cheaper but I do not like the look

https://www.clemson4wheel.com/warn-trans4mer-system-03-06-toyota-tundra.html

http://www.addictedoffroad.com/inde...ducts_id=721&zenid=db3pfd4969tv5k1dhsvopmuo11
 
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