2018 Lexus GX build

Once the control pack was bolted down and wired up it was just a matter of installing the Hawse fairlead (temporary) and spool the winch line on. I will be installing a roller fairlead as synthetic winch line does not like heat and when you drag the line across the Hawse under load it creates heat and will melt the rope.

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Part of the problem with modern vehicles is the pedestrian crash mitigation and the Lexus serves it up by having a large snout. This in turn causes manufactures to place the winch mount way back almost out of site as close to the frame as possible. This is a problem when winching and watching the life feed on the drum. It also causes issues for engaging and free spooling the winch. Part of the mitigation was moving the control pack to the bumper shell but I also needed to cut a access hole in the under hood plastic trim to engage the winch. Yes I'll need to pop the hood to do so. If I should need to correct an entanglement I can pop the trim off in a matter of seconds. So out came the 4 1/2" hole saw.

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Overall I am very happy with he results. It is a compromise for sure in the hardcore winching situation but I've mitigated the pit falls and this will allow me to demonstrate the real issues on contemporary bumper design and what can be done to mitigate the issues.

I really think I need to purchase some black anodized bolts for the control pack mount, OCD?
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I had a couple hours before work today so I was able to mount my HAM radio mounting plate, base radio and connect wires.
Still need to route all the wiring, antenna coax and clamp everything up.
This one of those little projects I can chip away at.





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All second gen GXs have KDSS. Some have voiced disdain for KDSS but with some study it’s a very intelligent system that is misunderstood. Essentially it’s a passive stabilizer bar disconnect. The hydraulic actuators lock the stabilizer bars at high speeds and smooth surfaces enabling better highway handling. When driving slowly and uneven surfaces the hydraulic actuators sense the pressure differential and allow the stabilizer bar to move freely allowing more suspension flex or droop. [/QUOTE said:
This sounds just like the ACE system on my 1999 LR Disco 2.
With no great rear bumper options and wanting a bit for a possible custom build I needed a rear recovery point. My GX didn’t come with a receiver hitch. Wanting to be able to perform some light towing as well as recovery I felt the factory hitch was the best option. Found a Lexus dealer on Amazon. Great experience with them.

The hitch came with all the hardware and bracket to relocate the trailer hook ups.

Used the floor jack to position it in place.
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The shipping companies came though and all my suspension parts arrived last Thursday!

I went with Sonoran Steel full flex kit for the 5th gen Runner with KDSS. The GX are similar suspension wise just heavier.

I went with Sonoran Steel for a few reasons.

1st. One of two companies that would talk to my specific needs of spring rates and matched shock valving.
2nd. The unique rear axle pan hard/trac bar that they developed to allow full articulation of the rear axle without contact of the KDSS components.
3rd. Steve the owner helped me on my Taco suspension and with the purchase and suspension on my daughters third gen 4 Runner.

The front suspension is pretty standard Toyota with the exception of 700# constant load springs and Radflo resi shocks valved for this spring rate.

The rear suspension has the 850# OME constant load springs, Radflo remote resi shocks valved for the weight and 1" extended down travel that is afforded by the KDSS and the Pan Hard/trac bar. I also ordered the extended bump stops and lower links.

Working around the KDSS system was a learning experience but nothing I couldn't overcome.





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