1st Build Thread Attempt - Cheap Suzi

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    1st Build Thread Attempt - Cheap Suzi

    After wheeling Toyotas for a good amount of years and always lusting over any Samurai I ever wheeled with, I finally picked one up. I had donated a bunch of Toyota parts and eventually started a build for my buddy while he was serving our country. Spring of 2019 he hooked me up with a $400 stock, complete, okay-ish shape 87 Samurai.

    Original plans were to use a TBI 4.3 I already owned, along with my Toyota W56 and stock duals from my old truck. The built 85 Yota front and IFS rear axles from my old truck would make their way under the Samurai, using stock YJ springs. I planned on 35" MTRs that I picked up new for cheap through work. Overall this was set to be a budget build to get me through wheeling until I can finish my 1 ton Toyota build. The goal was a street friendly rig I could take to town to cruise and look cool, but yet still run some moderate trails.

    After driving it in stock form for a bit, I realized the 1.3 ran beautiful and everything else seemed to work. I changed plans, figured I'd run the 1.3 until it puked and after Pirate research, decided ultimately it'll get a 1.6 at that point.

    So, here it was in all it's $400 stock Samurai glory.

    #2
    I started by installing the ZOR YJ kit. Initially I threw under a set of YJ lift springs that my buddy gave me with the Samurai. At this point I realized they were going to be way too tall, and a set of stock springs would be ideal.

    I cut out the front core support mount and sleeve/plated the frame to mount the IFS box out of my old Toyota. Hindsight is 2020, I should have used an FJ80 box as I do have interference issues between tie rod and drag link when the wheels are straight and LF is at full bump. I'll take care of that this summer

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      #3
      You can see how ridiculous the lift springs were. I was much happier with the stock YJ springs.

      I also bent up a set of sliders and front shock hoops.

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        #4
        I cut out the rear frame and sleeved it with square tube to mount the rear bumper that I bent up.

        The front bumper started off as a DIY kit from DR Z. I would buy another in a heart beat.

        First time flexing it on it's new suspension and axle set up..

        The rear axle is an IFS mini truck with disc brakes, 3/8" third member bolts, and armored. The front is an 85 mini truck running OG 30 spline Longs, ARP hub and knuckle studs, Marlin high steer, along with being trusted and armored. Im running stock 4.10 gears, welded front and rear.

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          #5
          I used a Toyota PS pump from a 22RE, cut up the bracket and tensioner, and made it bolt up to the 1.3. It works pretty good, until the front hubs are locked...which is par for the course with a welded front. It doesn't bother me too much though.

          I modified an IFS front Toyota shaft with the double cardan joint for the rear of the Samurai. The front is using a cut down rear Toyota shaft. It's funny how that works.

          First time outside in a couple weeks at this point, next to my 1 ton GMC.

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            #6
            Took a short hiatus to build a derby truck for the season. These Explorers are where it's at for the mini truck class.

            Took home a couple wins and some money.

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              #7
              Subaru master cyl and a Wilwood proportioning valve, works awesome! The master literally bolts on, you just have to make a longer plunger from the booster.

              Installed a 9K HF special and started driving it.

              I needed a new rear driveshaft, my temporary one had a vibration at 40mph and faster. Other than that, it wasn't that bad of a ride.

              It was already late October and there was a local Jeep gathering near a place where we wheel up here in WI. What a better place for a maiden offroad voyage than surrounded by a pile of new Jeeps...

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                #8
                Well, you can see how that went. I've never been more embarrassed, or so I think.

                I was trying to reverse over a large log with the front tires. While letting out the clutch and adding throttle, the front output on the case went tits up. With the front shackles unpinned and under torque in reverse, the ears on the front shaft bound up because of the angle. I put the case back together and clearances the ears on the shaft. Lesson learned!

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                  #9
                  The next mild wheeling trip went well..

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                    #10
                    Went winter wheeling around home and also in the UP of MI.

                    It needed a rear anti wrap bar in the worst way. I dont know how the springs or driveline survived. That was the next thing on the list, so using a Ruffstuff kit I built one.

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                      #11
                      Bent up some more protection for the front..

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                        #12
                        I've pretty much been using it as a DD since spring. I love driving this piece of crap. There aren't many here in WI and most people have no idea what it is. I found out my girlfriend enjoys riding around in the woods, which is awesome for my future of wheeling.

                        On this day we put on almost 100 miles exploring the northwoods of WI. Nothing hard core, just a good pack a picnic and go kind of day. It was a nice escape from the reality of Corona quarantine.

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                          #13
                          Checked out a newly open to road legal 4x4 spot in WI last weekend. It was a lot of fun and has potential for sure!

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                            #14
                            That pretty much brings it to current.

                            Future plans, bend up an interior cage and fix the rusty floor. Also, swap in an FJ80 box to take care of the steering clearance issues.

                            Future future plans, 1.6 swap.

                            I'll add to this post as I go on!

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                              #15
                              Nice build. Nice thread for one of the first.

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