Rig of the Month: August 2010 - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-31-2010, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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Rig of the Month: August 2010

Welcome to the first "Rig of the Month".


Please meet Shadow Warrior's The Raptor


BEFORE


AFTER



I decided to stay with everyone else in the naming of their FJ. Like the Scorpion, Paco, Teia, Blue Ox, Trail Bus, Odyssey, etc. I decided to name it the RAPTOR. For Reinforced (Armor) Amphibious (SCUBA & Snorkel MOD) Personal (People) Terrain (Land) Observation (For Exploring & Expeditions) Rover (Just another word for vehicle), so it made more sense to name it the Raptor, it sounds cool too

History:

I followed the concept & design of the FJ for years before it ever came out for sale to the public. I read every article that was written on it and saved any picture I could find on it. I was hooked the first time I saw it and read what the specs it was going to have.

I purchased mine in early Feb 07 after being in a major vehicle accident driving my 97 Toyota 4Runner with over 314,000 miles in it. This was my very first accident I ever had in my life. I hit some black ice early in the morning on the interstate and hit a concrete separator between the East and West bound lanes, then came off it straight on into a 07 tractor-trailer doing 65mph. He shot me back across the highway into a steel reinforced guard rail, taking it out too. I walked away with out a scratch, got to love Toyotas strength of their vehicles. Insurance money in hand I went to my local Toyota dealer to see what color FJ’s they had. They had just got in two TRD SE’s, the only difference between them was one had the front brush guard. I bought the one with out it, knowing that I would be changing out the front bumper a little ways down the road. I paid $34,223 for my FJ, I didn’t try to haggle with the sales guy, knowing they were going like crazy off the lots.

FROM THE DEALER

2007 / 4704C Toyota TRD SE 4x4 FJ Cruiser SUV
Build date: Dec,
Driver & Passenger Airbags
Vehicle Stability
VSC Traction Control Anti Lock
ABS w/ Electronic Brake-Force
EBD Distribution & Brake Assist
3pt Seat Belts
ELR Dr Seat Belts /ADR & ELR Pass Seatbelts

TRD Special Edition

Black Diamond exterior, Exterior color-keyed interior door panel inserts.
A-Trac & Rear Diff Lock
TRD Tuned Bilstein Shocks
TRD SS Exhaust System
TRD 16" x 7.5: Gunmetal Alum Wheels
TRD Special Edition Badges
TRD Logo All Season Floor Mats
TRD Rock Rails
Multi-information display
2-1 audio with 6 disc changer
Driver & Passenger front seat mounted side bolster airbags
1st and 2nd row side Curtain Shield Airbags
Security System Upgrade
Roof Rack
Vehicle Shield Package

Distributor Installed Options

S.S. Exhaust tip
Passenger Armrest
First Aid Kit
Door Sill Enhancements
Skid Plates
Security System Upgrade
Receiver Hitch / Wire Harness
Roof Rack
Spare Tire Cover
Vehicle Shield Package – Lusterizing Sealant, Sound Shield, Sealant Cleaner, Rental Car Assistance.

TOTAL COST FROM DEALER: $34,223.00

The Following is the list of changes that has been done to this base unit. I will be adding more as time permits along with finances. Items will be removed and added to. The Raptor is an ongoing work in progress. The base unit as you can see is a TRD SE. The RAPTOR is being built as an Expedition capable vehicle. I will be updating the thread with the future items along with pictures as the vehicle building progresses.


ARMOR

Road Armor - Titan Front Bumper
Demello Off-Road - Rear Swingout Bumper W/ two Fuel Can Holders
Bud Built Front Skid plate
Bud Built Middle Skid plate
Bud Built Transmission & Transfer Case Skid plate
Bud Built Rear Cross member
Bud Built Fuel Tank Skid Plate
Inchworm E-Locker Motor Skid Plate
All Pro Rear Lower Shock Skid Plate
All Pro Rear Trailing Link Skid Plate
All Phase Rear Differential Skid plate
TRD Sliders
Pro One Side Mirror Light Guards
MANIK Tail Light Guards
Racers Choice Headlight Stone Guards
Total Chaos Front Lower Control Arm Skids (Purchasing)

SUSPENSION AND TIRES

Mickey Thompson 8x16 Classic Locks w/ Black Faux Bead Lock Ring
Dick Cepek Mud Country - 305/70R16
Custom Body Mount Chop
ICON VD (Donahoe Racing) 3.5” Coilovers ”New Version”
ICON VD (Donahoe Racing) Rear Shocks & Springs
ICON VD Upper Control Arms
ICON VD - Rear Lower Control Arms
All Pro – Rear Upper Links
Gorilla Lugs & Locks (Black)

RECOVERY

Warn M8000 Winch
Warn Fairlead Roller
Warn Receiver Hitch W/ Recovery Shackles
4 Ton Come-Along
(2) 3.5 Ton Shackles
ARB Tree Saver
ARB Snatch Block
ARB Safety Cover
ARB Snatch Strap
ARB Tow Strap
ARB Large Recovery Storage Bag
Hi-Lift 48” Extreme Jack
Hi-Lift Base
Hi-Lift Bumper Lift

ENGINE PERFORMANCE

TRD CAI (Cold Air Intake)
Relocated Transfer Case, Transmission, Rear Differential & E-Locker Breathers (SCUBA Mod)
ARB Safari Snorkel (Custom Install to CAI)
Std TRD package SS Exhaust System
Mobile One Synthetic Engine Oil
Mobile One Filter
Mobile One Synthetic Grease 75W-90
E3 Spark Plugs (E3.68)

LIGHTING

PIAA 510 Ion Super White Driving Lights (2)
IPF 900XSD Extreme Driving Lights (2)
IPF 900XSS Extreme Pencil Beams (4) Light Bar
Red Neon Under-dash Lighting (Night Vision) Driver & Passenger sides
Interior Overhead Puck Lights (uphill's Idea)
Changed out Dash, Instrument & AC Control lights from white to RED LED's

ELECTRONICS

SONY AM/FM CD/IPOD Player
Cobra 148 NW ST Sound Tracker SSB CB Radio
Lowrance 540C Baja GPS Unit
Uniden CT7 Police Scanner
Scanguage II
3’ Fire Stick CB Antenna
Bandi CB Mount
Whistler Radar Detector
Insignia DVD Player
Engel MT45 Freezer/Fridge
Duel Optima Battery Setup

SAFETY

Duel Vehicle Horns
Emergency Window Breakage Tool
Fire Extinguisher
Sceptor 5gal. Fuel Cans (2)
Tire Plugs, Patches & Tools
JB Weld (For Extreme Trail Breakage)
Heavy Work Gloves
Signal Flares
ARB Recovery Damper
Survival Kit (Very Comprehensive)
Emergency Medical Kit (Very Comprehensive)
CCW Weapon Mount

STORAGE

GOBI Ranger Custom Full Size Roof Rack
Sleeping / Tool Storage Box
Rear Door M-PAC Rear Door Storage Rack
Rear Side Storage Wall Racks
Sleeping/Tool Box/On Board AIR

TOOLS & TRAIL EQUIPMENT

WARN SP1 Air Compressor (Running Air Tools)
Ingersoll Rand Impact Kit
Fiskars Axe
Fiskars Shovel
(2) Scepter 2.5 gal Water Cans
Maxx Air Compressor
Staun Tire Deflator
Heavy Duty 4x4 Tire Gauge w/deflator button
Tool Kit including Hack Saw, Breaker Bar
Spare Vehicle Fuses
Gorilla Duct Tape
S.S. Bailing Wire
Large Breaker Bar
35mm Socket (Hubs)
GoJo Hand Cleaner

SPARE PARTS

(1) CV axles W/Boots
(2) Upper Rear Links
(2) Rear Lower Links
Serpentine Belt
Radiator Hoses
CAI Filter (Spare)
Spare Vehicle Fuses
Spare Plug Wires
Spare Grease Fittings

ADDITIONS

Custom Wet Okole Seat Covers
Vent Visors
Stant Locking Gas Cap
RAM Laptop Vehicle Mount
Ellis Precision CNC Billet Aluminum grab handles
Ellis Precision CNC Billet Aluminum Battery Clamp
Window Tint 5% Driver & Passenger Side windows / All Rear Windows 20%
Replaced the Stock Cheep Door Speakers

CUSTOM PERSONAL MOD’s

Removed stock emblems
Blacked out Mirrors, Door Handles & Bezel
Blacked out Front Turn Signals & Rear Tail Lights
Shorted Shifter 3"
Installed Custom Shifters
Removed Plastic Fenders
Painted Brake Calipers (Red)
Personalized License Plate (IH8PVMT)
Built Interior Sleep/Tool/Equipment box

FJ CLEANING ITEMS I USE

303 Aerospace Protectant for all Exterior Plastic
Mr. Clean Car Wash System For Exterior

FUTURE ITEMS TO BE ADDED

Light Racing - Jounce Shocks
Demello Rear Swingout Bumper w/ (2) Fuel Cans
ARB X-Jack Exhaust Jack
Synthetic Winch Line
Complete CV Axe setup (Spare)
S.S. Break Lines
Spare Radiator Hoses Upper & Lower
MOBI-ARC 200x or the Zena Welder (trying to decide which one, leaning towards the Zena setup due to river crossings)
On Board Hot Water Shower


The following are some of the threads I made to help other forum members out on projects for their FJ. I figured this would be a good place for all the links.

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...-cb-mount.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...op-w-pics.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ather-mod.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...-solution.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...tires-mod.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...witch-out.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-thread.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...gun-mount.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-w-pics.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...t-1-2-3-a.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ns-w-pics.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-w-pics.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ose-winch.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...deflators.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ion-guide.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...-survival.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ir-system.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...r-15-00-a.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...de-w-pics.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...mpact-kit.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...-everyone.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...el-setups.html

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...box-cheep.html


Terry

2007 FJ Cruiser TRD SE - SOLD
2000 Land Cruiser UZJ100 The Wife's - SOLD
20?? FJ Cruiser - Coming Soon
2008 4 Runner Limited - Let the modding begin


My TRD Build Up


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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-31-2010, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

BREAKDOWN:

I decided to take the above list and just transfer down here and go into more detail along with pictures and the reasons for buying certain items than others with a brief explanation of why.

ARMOR - Details

Road Armor - Titan Front Bumper

I decided to go with the Road Armor Titan front bumper because of the type of terrain that I will most likely encounter when off-roading. Also living in the heart of the Ozark Mountains we tend to have a lot of Deer crossing the highways at night, this will also help to protect the vehicle for any unfortunate wildlife encounters.



Demello Off-Road - Rear Bumper W/ Swingout & Duel Fuel Cans

I decided to switch to Demello's Rear Swingout rear bumper, Jason is one of the best Fabrcators in the country IMHO. Not only does he do professional quality work, but his customer service is top notch. The Demello desgin is very beefy and strong which will last for many years. I needed a place to store my fuel cans on the vehicle. I don't like storing fuel on the roof, I prefer to keep as much weight off the roof as posible keeping the COG down.





Bud Built Skids

I decided to go with Bud Built skids for my rig not only for the reputation for having well designed and tough skids, but meeting Bud in person in Ouray, CO at the first FJ Cruiser Summit was also a deciding factor. I like to support venders that take the time out to meet and get to know their customers. Plus the fact Bud is a very nice guy. I enjoyed meeting other venders also, Terry from All Pro, Jason Demello and his family. Jason I have to say is a MASTER when it comes to fabrication skills, along with his low-key personality. Mark from Metal Tech and his dad were great out on the trails. We have some great venders on this forum; it’s good to support them and their efforts.





Inchworm E-Locker Motor Skid Plate

I went with the Inchworm E-Locker because I like the design and again their products. I also got to meet them at the Summit. I felt it as only prudent to protect one of the most sensitive pieces of equipment under the FJ from trail damage. The Electronic Locker now is protected from any thing that the trail throws at it. It’s also backed up by the Bud Built skids.



All Pro Rear Lower Shock Skid Plate

I went with the All Pro Shock Skids for protection of the lower part of my Donahoe Racing rear shocks. The rear shocks on the FJ are susceptible to trail damage along the lower portion of the shock housing. The Shock skids help prevent damage to my rear shocks out on the trail.



All Pro Rear Trailing Link Skid Plate

The All Pro Training Link Skid again helps prevent any type of trail damage to my rear lower links. I am of the mindset that Armor is your last line of defense before damage occurs. I like the feeling knowing that the underside of the vehicle is protected from some nasty things that the trail can throw at it. It could be the difference of coming home safely having wonderful stories to tell, or broken down in the middle of know where trying to find a way to limp off the trail, then finding a part, installing it, etc.



All Phase Rear Differential Skid plate (Ordered)

I also got in on the group buy for the All Phase Differential Skid. This is most definitely one piece of armor that every FJ needs while on the trails. The rear differential is the lowest part under the vehicle and the one that takes the blunt of the punishment. I was leaning towards the All Pro Differential skid that you weld on, but it’s not really a skid in the true sense of the word, it’s more like reinforced armor at the rear of the differential, when backing up or sliding off a very large rock. The all Phase approach is more of a true skid; it covers the front, bottom and rear of the differential. When out on the trail wheeling your going to be in essence plowing into (moving forward) into or on to large rocks when trying to climb or defeat an obstacle. This is where the differential skid comes in to play.

TRD Sliders

I am staying at this time with the TRD Sliders that came with the TRD package. I am normally not a big fan of “OEM” accessories, they are usually are more for aesthetic purposes than function. This is not the case with the TRD Sliders, I am very impressed with not only their fit, but also who well their made. They are VERY heavy, which was a big surprise when removing them for the Body mount chop. I also noticed how well they did on the trail out in Colorado. They took a beating, along with being able to support the FJ’s weight when on a rock ledge. So maybe down the line I’ll switch to an aftermarket slider, more than likely it will be Demello’s. But right now, they are performing just how they were intended.



Pro One Side Mirror Light Guards

First off, I’m not a big fan of the side mirror lights, my wife likes them, and since she is now into off-roading she wanted them back on the truck. I had originally had my dealer order a set of non-lighted mirrors. I found out when installing them that the non-lighted mirrors are also manual, not electric. I have now reinstalled the original mirrors with the lights and decided to make slightly cover them with a CNC black powder coat light guard that Pro One makes and sells for the FJ. I ordered a set and now love my mirror sidelights.



SUSPENSION AND TIRES Details

Mickey Thompson 8x16 Classic Locks w/ Black Faux Bead Lock Ring

Wheels and tires were a very hard decision to make. I have owned many types of custom wheels over the years. I was looking for something a little different than everyone else was running, I first was going to go with a wheel now made by Pacer. I had a set on my 96 Dodge 4x4 Pickup years ago. They’re a good-looking wheel in my opinion. I also wanted the WE Bead Locks, but with so many other items I wanted to have done with the vehicle, I just couldn’t bring myself to spending that much for bead locks right now. I looked at some of the other bead locks out too, like Poison Spider, Champion and Trailready bead locks. I also really liked the Mickey Thompson Classic Locks. I have been reading about other members that have bought the MT’s that some members had rub issues when they got them on their rig’s, others stated they had no problems. In the end I decided to go with the MT Classic Locks. I did experience some rub issues on the passenger front wheel hitting the brake caliper housing slightly, I talked with the head Technician at my Toyota dealership, he said it won’t hurt taking a grinder to knock off a small 1/8” off a corner on the outside of the housing. So that’s what I did. I thought about using wheel spacers like Spider Trax’s, but really didn’t want to go that route. When running spacers you have to be very careful about the spacers coming loose, they have to be checked often. They say, if you plan on wheeling hard, that to stay away from spacers. I am very happy with the Mickey Thompson’s; I think it was a good choice for now. I had the chrome bead lock rings powder coated black to off set the chrome wheels a little. I think it gave it a more aggressive look.



Dick Cepek Mud Country - 305/70R16

Wheels and tires were a very hard decision to make. I have owned many types of custom wheels and tires over the years. I thought I had made my mind up on the tires, I narrowed it down to the MT/ MTZ’s, but I had noticed a lot of members that were running them were having some wear issues. I started to sway away from them and lean over to the Nitto Mud Grapplers. I love how aggressive they are, but did not like that they were not sipped for handling in wet conditions in the rain or snow. While visiting Rough Country in Dyersburg TN, I jokingly asked Ben from Rough Country on what kind of deal he would make me on a set of five tires and wheels. He said he would make me a great deal. I said ok and sat down with him while we talked about what I was looking for. I told him I wanted the MT / MTZ’s, he said he was sorry that they were out of stock at the moment on them. I thought well, I’ll just wait then. He said had I looked at the Dick Cepek’s Mud Country’s, I said no. He said most of the guy’s at Rough Country run them, he said that he had them on his own truck and further stated that they are very quite on the road, they wear better than the MT/MTZ’s and handle better too. He said they are sipped for wet conditions and clean the best in the MUD and Snow. I was sold on them from that point, the RC group have an off-road park with the type of terrain that they have is about the same that I have too. These guy’s are in the MUD all the time, if they use DC Mud Country’s then I figured they have to be a great tire.

Custom Body Mount Chop

I looked around for a competent shop to do my body mount chop. It’s kind of hard living in a rural area in the Ozark Mountains. (my wife Anita like to say we live in Hooter Ville) I tend to agree with her on that sometimes. Anyways, I found a small Custom Hot Rod shop that had opened up close by, and decided to see if they would be able to do the work that I wanted. I found they were from CA and use to build Sand Rails out there. I gave them some pic’s of Tinas (VDM) chop she had done. They said great pic’s, we can do that. I stood around all day while they worked on it watching the very slow progress, but the end result was well worth the wait. It looks like it came from the factory that way.
You use this link to see the tread on the body mount chop.

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...op-w-pics.html





”New Version” Donahoe Racing 3.5” Coilovers

I had a hard time deciding which suspension system that I wanted to go with, I read & re-read the suspension threads I can’t count how many times. I narrowed it down to Donahoe Racing, All Pro Off-Road and King. In the end, it kind of chose me. I was lucky enough to be at the right place at the right time with some great people. I’m talking about the 2007 FJ Summit in Ouray, CO. The Saturday night at the raffle giveaway I was sitting next to Steve (LandCruiserSteve) & Mongo we all bought a lot of tickets for the big drawing. We kidded each other through the whole thing.

Mongo said he wanted sliders, Steve wanted a rear bumper and I wanted the DR suspension. I kidded to Mongo that If I won a set of sliders I would trade for the DR suspension if he won it. Mongo did win the DR, I won a DR T-Shirt, oh well. Steve won (2) sets of sliders, sold one and traded 1legedlance for a rear bumper that he won. I asked kind of kidding to Mongo what he wanted for the DR setup? He thought about it, then said how about $550, this way I can buy my sliders. I said your kidding right? He said no. I said I’ll be right back to get the money, I came back and gave him $600 for being so nice on giving me such a great deal.



Donahoe Racing Rear Shocks & Springs

We really do have some great people on this forum. I wanted share that little story with you. Later that night I was talking with Mark (Metal Tech) & Jason (Jason Demello) about the raffle. Jason informed me that I got one hell of a deal, that those shocks are Donahoe Racings newest ones with more travel and that they are the first ones! Wow, very cool to get the first new shocks from DR, so you see the suspension kind of found me. Jason told me to call him in a week and he would set me up with the rear. I have to say that Jason, Chris and all the guys over at Demello Offroad are a fantastic group. Thanks again.

Camburg Upper Control Arms

I thought I might be able to get away for a while using the stock UCA’s, but that was not the case with using the “New” DR Coilovers. I called Jason Demello and asked him for some advice on UCA’s. In the end I bought the Camburg UCA’s from Jason Demello.




All Pro - Pro Link Rear Lower Control Arms with Johnny Joints

I decided to beef up the rear lower control arms on the FJ. I had noticed some other forum members had some breakage out on the trail; looking at some of the pic’s I could see why, thin walled tubing is not made for that type of abuse. It’s great as long as not a directional force is applied in just one area; “pushing inward” deforming the spherical wall, when that happens; catastrophic failure is almost certain. I decided to go with All Pro’s Pro Links, they are heavy walled tubing with greaseable Johnny Joints.







All Pro – Rear Upper Links with Johnny Joints

I also went ahead and changed out my rear upper links with the beefier All Pro upper links. I have not heard of anyone breaking an upper link yet, but why take the chance.



All Pro - Ultimate Sway Bar Links (Not Installed yet)



Gorilla Lugs & Locks (Black)

I also went with Gorilla Lug nuts & locks for the wheels. I went with black ones; I thought the color contrast looks better than having chrome ones.



RECOVERY

Warn M8000 Winch

I decided to go with a WARN M8000 winch, they have been around forever in the four wheel drive world and have established an unbeatable reputation for having the most dependable winches on the market. I will change out to Synthetic line for safety reasons down the road, but will use cable until the need arises to change out the cable.

Warn Fairlead Roller

I’m also going to stay with the Roller Fairlead; I will probably change to over to a Hawse Fairlead when I begin running synthetic line.

Warn Receiver Hitch W/ Recovery Shackles

I chose to use a Warn Receiver Hitch with Recovery Shackle because from experience I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to secure the rear of the vehicle to a large tree using a tree protector strap, then hook on to another vehicle for extraction. In muddy situations you can easily be pulled forward while trying to winch someone out of the muck. This helps establish a secure strong connection when pulling in slippery conditions.



4 Ton Come-Along

Working Off-Shore in the Oil Field as a Commercial Deep Sea Diver, we had to improvise when working at extreme depths in the ocean. 95% of our work is done by feel, unless of course we are working on a mid water project. Anyways, using a come-along’s along with a wide assortment of other tools are necessary as a Hard Hat Diver. We are all alone except for the Crane Operator that is moving massive tons of steel over your head at 2:00AM in the middle of the ocean or the Air Tugger Operator helping you cinch up on a cable to help you pull a flange together while you insert a 45lb bolt and 23lb nut. Anyways, come-a-longs are a very helpful tool, it’s like a mini winch in many ways and used properly.



(2) 3.5 Ton Shackles

I bought a couple of 3 ½ ton shackles and attached them to the front bumper for extraction points.

ARB Tree Saver

I was fortunate to Win an ARB Tree Saver Strap at the Coon Creek Crawl from Tora Sport. This is another great vender we have on the forums. Steve and Rose are great people to work with. (This item is being shipped with my Snorkel shipment.)



WARN Snatch Block

I went with the Warn 19,000lb Snatch Block, while buying my Warn Receiver Hitch, PIAA Driving light while checking out a local 4x4 shop in Lafayette, La. The place is called Cajun Off-Road. They do lifts, sell winches, lights, etc.


Terry

2007 FJ Cruiser TRD SE - SOLD
2000 Land Cruiser UZJ100 The Wife's - SOLD
20?? FJ Cruiser - Coming Soon
2008 4 Runner Limited - Let the modding begin


My TRD Build Up


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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-31-2010, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

ARB Snatch Strap

This is another item that is nice to have as part of your recovery gear. This allows you to use a strap instead of your winch. I always try to use a snatch strap first, then as a last resort using the winch. Most recovery can be done using a snatch strap. (This item is being shipped with my Snorkel shipment.)



ARB Large Recovery Storage Bag

I bought the Large ARB Recovery Storage bag to store all my recovery gear in, it’s very durable and it has compartments that allow you to separate all your gear nicely. (This item is being shipped with my Snorkel shipment.)



Hi-Lift 48” Extreme Jack

I decided on going with the Extreme Hi-Lift because of the corrosion resistant hardware it has. As of right now, I have to carry it on the inside in the rear of the vehicle. Once I receive the All Pro swing arm rear bumper fuel can attachment, I will then mount the jack on the rear swing arm.



Hi-Lift Base

I could just use a short piece of 2x8, but I figured the plastic base will hold up longer than the wood one. Once the wood gets wet, then dries a few times, then applying a large amount of force will make it crack eventually, and not at the most opportune time. (On back order)

ENGINE PERFORMANCE

TRD CAI (Cold Air Intake)

I decided to go with the TRD CAI instead of the AFE because of the pictures I saw of both. I didn’t like the AFE because of two things, one it has a large opening at the bottom of the breather box, this IMHO defeats the purpose of trying to get more colder air to the engine, since in reality your picking up hot air swirling around the inside of the engine bay.

The second thing I don’t like is the hole in the bottom of the box. I’m installing the ARB Safari Snorkel. With the huge hole in the box, it will have to be covered up so defeating what ever purpose they had it there in the first place. With the TRD the box is totally enclosed except for the top which is enclosed with a aluminum lid with a rubber backing held down by six Allen head screws. The only thing I will have to do is make a small transit piece that will go from the Snorkel to the CAI box.



Relocated Rear Differential, Tranny, Transfer & E-Locker Breathers (SCUBA Mod)

I then decided it was time to do my SCUBA MOD (a.k.a. Relocating the Rear Differential and E-Locker breather MOD). Toyota has already relocated the front Diff & transfer case breathers, but left the rears alone. I decided to relocate mine up higher and up into the engine bay where the others ones were too. I made a whole thread on a “How To” install and relocate the rear breathers, I won’t go into all the details here and rehash, you can click on the following links to see the whole process.





https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ather-mod.html

ARB Safari Snorkel (Custom Install to CAI)

As everyone knows, I made a ARB Safari Snorkel Install Thread. I also did a lot of research for those of us that are running CAI (Cold Air Intakes) on our FJ’s. I have already found a coupling that will hook directly to the CAI Box then into the Snorkel penetration into the engine bay. Here is a link to the Snorkel Install Thread I made:

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ns-w-pics.html



And a link to the Snorkel to CAI install I also made:

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-w-pics.html

Std TRD package SS Exhaust System

I did not change anything with the exhaust system since with the TRD package it comes with an all S.S. exhaust system.

Mobile One Synthetic Engine Oil

I swiched over to Mobile One Synthetic at my first oil change @ 5,000 miles

Mobile One Filter

I also use only the Mobile One Filter.

LIGHTING

PIAA 510 Ion Super White Driving Lights (2)

I went with the PIAA driving lights instead of Fog light because of the height of the rig now along with it gives me better visiblility when driving on dark roads.



IPF 900XSD Extreme Driving Lights (2)

I spent a lot of time looking and reading about the different off-road lights. I was looking for a light combo that would work in very rough conditions. The IPF 900XSD fit the bill. These lights are the only ones that can be fully submerged under a foot of water while on for up to two minutes. I wanted that capability when having to forge a river crossing at night. This is why I used these mounted on the front bumper. I will say they are a very bright white light, I'm very happy with the IPF's.



IPF 900XSS Extreme Pencil Beams (4)

I also went with the IPF 900XSS Extreme Pencil Beams for on top of the roof. These are mounted to my custom GOBI Ranger Roof Rack.




Red Neon Under-dash Lighting (Night Vision) Driver & Passenger sides
I wanted to mount some red lights under the dash so that while driving my Wife would still be able to see without turning on the overhead lights, thus destroying my night vision while driving. I bought two 9" Red Neon lights and mounted them under the dash on both sides. As you can see in the following pic's it gives just the right amount of light inside the cab area.





Rock Blocker Head Light Covers (Smoked)

GOBI Ranger Roof Rack

I decided to go with the GOBI Ranger Roof Rack in the end. I found that they would make me a custom rack to fit my large IPF's. GOBI has a solid reputation in the roof rack business. It looks great with my IPF Lights installed. The quality is awesome from GOBI.



ELECTRONICS

My Fuse Block Addition MOD

I made an install thread for those that want to add some extra electronics in the vehicle, but are unsure of how to do it. I made a custom bracket for the fuse block and ran allot of my interior electronics to this fuse block.



https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-w-pics.html

SONY AM/FM CD/IPOD Player

I had a hard decision on which unit to by. I looked at the Alpine and the Sony in dash units. At the last moment I went with the Sony because it gave you more bang for the buc. This unit comes with an IPOD cable already attached to the unit, it also has a USB port in the front for connecting a Flash Drive. I’m pretty happy with the unit so far.



Cobra 148 NW ST Sound Tracker SSB CB Radio

I then decided to install my old Cobra CB it’s one of those huge ones. I love even though it's real big. the reason why I kept it has a built in SWR meter plus I like having SSB too. This gives me a lot more range when trying to communicate with someone. I like the idea of having Upper & Lower side bands than just the normal 40 channels. I originally made a bracket that attached under the center consol, but after seeing Chris’s post on his location, that’s where I also went. He also has a large CB, He pulled the stock Fjammer CD Player and installed his CB underneath a new Radio. I decided that was a good place for mine also, I like the idea of moving out of the legroom of the passenger and up onto the dash consol. It took a lot of fabricating to get it to fit in the dash, but worth the effort. It’s very easy to use the controls now. I gave the wife the Fjammer and put it in her Camry LE.



Lowrance 540C Baja GPS Unit

I have been looking at all the different GPS devices on the market for a long time, I do a lot of traveling. I am a little spoiled when it comes to GPS screen size. I have been using my 15" laptop screen in the vehicle running a GPS for about 4 years now. I had thought about building my own unit with a touch screen after seeing what Todd (Air2air) built for his rig. I was going to do it a little different then he did, I had planed on installing Micro Mini components with a 10” touch screen. But I was at West Marine one day and started looking at the Lowrance units that they have on display. I went back home and jumped in Lowrance’s web site and did some research and found the 540C Baja GPS was just what I was looking for. It has a 5” screen size, it takes cards for very detailed maps of around the world. It will also handle the abuse of off-road use. I mounted it just above where the rearview mirror is inside. This will give me a good view of the GPS while traveling. Here is a link to my install thread for the Lowrance 540c BAJA GPS

https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...ll-thread.html











Uniden CT7 Police Scanner

I have had this Police Scanner for about 6 years now, it is probably one of the best I found at the time when I bought it. This is already pre-programmed with all the freq around the country for EMS, Police, State, Fire, etc. All you have to do is push a button of what State your in, and all the freq are in there. It’s great for traveling knowing if there is an accident up ahead and knowing where it is so you can avoid the traffic congestion.



Scanguage II

I bought the Scanguage II to help monitor my engine performance before I purchased my CAI to see what type of difference I would see. I noticed that running the Scanguage I am able to monitor my Intake Air all the time along with many other features. I was getting about 20 –26 degrees over ambient air temp before installing my CAI. Once I installed the CAI, I was able to not only hear and feel the difference but I could see the difference on the Scanguage. My intake air temps dropped to now 4-5 degrees over ambient. I think everyone should have the Scanguage, what a great tool. I watch it more than I watch the instrument gauge cluster in the vehicle.



3’ Fire Stick CB Antenna

I went with the 3’ ft Fire Stick antenna, I felt it was a good size for my application. If I went any longer I would run into more problems in the brush or any smaller I would have range problems.

Bandi CB Mount

Of course I had to go with the Famous BANDI CB Mount, it looks like it was made from the factory for the FJ. Thanks again Leroy for such a great design buddy.

Whistler Radar Detector

I do a lot of traveling in my rig. I have been using a radar detector for years when traveling, it works great. I just transferred this one from my other vehicle to the RAPTOR

Terry

2007 FJ Cruiser TRD SE - SOLD
2000 Land Cruiser UZJ100 The Wife's - SOLD
20?? FJ Cruiser - Coming Soon
2008 4 Runner Limited - Let the modding begin


My TRD Build Up


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-31-2010, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010


RAPTOR CONTINUED PAGE 4 OF 4

SAFETY

Duel Vehicle Horns

The Stock horn on the FJ has little to be desired. I wanted something that was a little louder. I looked at Train horns, but they take up a lot of room inside the engine bay area, in which in my case, space is at a premium. I decided to go with another horn I think I got from Auto Zone. By adding another horn that had a different decibel then the stock when combined made the horn now sound a lot better and louder.

Emergency Window Breakage Tool

I always felt you needed some type of emergency window breakage tool inside the vehicle. With electronic windows and if the vehicle ever gets submerged, you will need some way of extracting your self if the doors are jammed. I bought this inexpensive tool from Pep Boys and have it mounted on the drivers side of the center consol for easy reach in case of an emergency.



Fire Extinguisher

I mounted a small ABC Fire extinguisher on the drivers side rear of the vehicle for emergencies

Sceptor 5gal. Fuel Cans (2)

I spent along time looking at the different fuel containers out on the market. There are the military surplus containers from Sweden or the British type; the US Military type Jerry cans. The ugly carb compliant type that are now required in CA and the Sceptor NATO type that have been around for many years. I used to have two of the metal Jerry type in the bed of my 4x4 Toyota pickup. They are ok, but I decided on going with the Scepter this time. The plastic Sceptor containers will take allot of abuse and because they are not metal you don't have to worry about sparks. They also will not leak fuel like some of the others out there. I bought mine before the end of the year because Sceptor is going to stop making them for the public in 08. I think you will be able to still buy the tan military containers, but the colored ones will be no more from what I have read. I went ahead a bought two red ones; they are very well built. These will be coming off the roof soon as I get the All Pro swing arm so I can mount these on the rear of the vehicle.



Tire Plugs, Patches & Tools

JB Weld (For Extreme Trail Breakage)

Heavy Work Gloves

Signal Flares

ARB Safety Damper

The ARB Safty cover is used to place over the winch line close to the vehicle that your winching out, in case there is a break, it will wrap the cable up in the cover limiting the distance and damage that the cable would cause if left unprotected. (This item is being shipped with my Snorkel shipment.)



Survival Kit (Very Comprehensive)

CCW Weapon Mount

I wanted a secure mount for my Glock 22 (.40cal) in the vehicle. I used a holster I had laying around a Black Hawk Serpa, I adapted it for the vehicle by mounting to the rear of the center consol. You see the thread on it here. :https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...?highlight=ccw




STORAGE

M-PAC Rear Door Storage




TOOLS & TRAIL EQUIPMENT

Fiskars Axe & Fiskars Shovel

I decided to go with Fiskers Brand (Gerber) for my Shovel and Axe. I know from past experince that some public lands and BLM lands require you to have an Axe and Shovel before entering any offroad areas. These I mounted on GOBI Ranger Roof Rack along with my Hi-Lift



Maxx Air Compressor

I read allot of reviews on compressors and found that the MAXX Air compressor couldn't be beat for the price. it kept up with some very high piced compressors out there on the market.



Staun Tire Deflator

I researched about tire deflators on the market. I was looking the Staun or the Oasis type. The more I looked at them the more I leaned to the Staun. The Oasis are nice, they are made from Alumimnum where as the Staun are made from Brass. The Oasis can be left on the wheels, this is there selling point. you screw them on then driveaway while the tires deflate to the desired air pressure. I don't like the idea of having something long attached to my tire stems while driving sticking out side the wheel area only to get ripped off then not only loosing all my air but having to replace the tire stem too. The Staun's in MHO looked to be more rugged and will preform for what I want. This is a Christmas present from my lovely wife



Heavy Duty 4x4 Tire Gauge w/deflator button

I have been using this same type of tire gauage for over 15 years. I love them, you are able to control the exact amount of air pressure when filling up your tires. The little button alows you to let out a little air if needed and you can see on the gauge how much air is in there. It also will keep the last reading on the gauge until you depress the button whicle alows you to see the reading, nice.



Tool Kit including Hack Saw, Breaker Bar

Spare Vehicle Fuses

Gorilla Duct Tape

S.S. Bailing Wire

Large Breaker Bar

35mm Socket (Hubs)

GoJo Hand Cleaner

FJC Spare Parts including (2) CV Boots, (2) Upper Rear Links, (2) Rear Lower Links, Serpentine Belt, more to add

ADDITIONS

Custom Wet Okole Seat Covers

I did a group buy for the Wet Okole seat covers and purchased some myself, all black with just the Red TRD logo on the front seats. They are fantastic seat covers; I love them.



Vent Visors

Stant Locking Gas Cap

RAM Laptop Vehicle Mount

Ellis Precision CNC Billet Aluminum grab handles



Ellis Precision CNC Billet Aluminum Battery Clamp

Window Tint 5% Driver & Passenger Side windows / All Rear Windows 20%

I next wanted the windows tinted. The FJ comes with black colored glass, which is nice and dark, but it is not tint. I went to a professional tint shop and had them install 5% on my drivers & passenger side windows along with a front brow on the windshield. I then had them install 20% on the remaining windows around the vehicle. This gave me the look as if it was all the same from the outside, but was not as dark on the inside when looking out. Anyone that has ever had very dark tint knows that it’s a PITA to try to back up at night.



CUSTOM PERSONAL MOD’s

Removed stock emblems

I began doing little MOD’s just like most when they get a new vehicle, de-badging it to get a clean look, I removed the Toyota emblem along with the word Cruiser, it kind of reminds me of the POS Chrysler PT Cruiser. So I only kept the FJ and re-located it just above the TRD SE emblem.



Blacked out Mirrors, Door Handles & Bezel

While my wife and I were attending the Coon Creek Crawl in Dyersburg, TN, we were given a tour of Rough Country. We were able to see the RC SEMA FJ, I was surprised that my wife Anita loved the blacked out door handles, mirrors, turn signals and tail lights. She turned to me and said, we need to do that to ours! I said I loved that look too. I inquired on how it was done, they said a small percentage of black mixed with clear, then shot on the plastic parts and slowly built up to where it has the appearance of being black.

I purchased automotive black lacquer along with a clear lacquer. I removed all the parts from the vehicle, then sanded them down. Mixed up some paint and kept applying the paint building up a coat until it looked black. I think it came out great. You can still se the side markers when the lights are turned on.







Blacked out Front Turn Signals & Rear Tail Lights



FJ CLEANING ITEMS I USE

303 Aerospace Protectant for all Exterior Plastic

Mr. Clean Car Wash System For Exterior

FUTURE ITEMS TO BE ADDED

Outback Air System (Coming Soon)



ARB X-Jack Exhaust Jack



Duel Battery Setup

Synthetic Winch Line

Complete CV Axe setup (Spare)

S.S. Break Lines

Spare Radiator Hoses Upper & Lower

VIAIR Reserve onboard Air System (Running Air Tools)



MOBI-ARC 200x or the Zena Welder (trying to decide which one, leaning towards the Zena setup due to river crossings)


MOBI-ARC


ZENA Welder

SCORPION Mount

Terry

2007 FJ Cruiser TRD SE - SOLD
2000 Land Cruiser UZJ100 The Wife's - SOLD
20?? FJ Cruiser - Coming Soon
2008 4 Runner Limited - Let the modding begin


My TRD Build Up


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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

Most of you know that Mike has sold the Raptor to another forum member in Canada, but he took Mod'ding your FJ to a new level.

As some of you may or may not be aware Mike is suffering from terminal cancer. Several forum members have come together to help raise funds to help Mike and his family make it through this tough time. You may donate items for auction or make a donation by following this link.

The Shadow Warrior Fund : Mike Paulson - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum

Mike has done so much for the FJ Forum and our off-road community, now is our time to repay the favor.

Terry

2007 FJ Cruiser TRD SE - SOLD
2000 Land Cruiser UZJ100 The Wife's - SOLD
20?? FJ Cruiser - Coming Soon
2008 4 Runner Limited - Let the modding begin


My TRD Build Up


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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-01-2010, 05:28 AM
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

A very appropriate tribute to one of the most legendary rigs on this forum and to the man who built it.

Thank you, Mike, for the inspiration that you've given to all of us.


Steve Bolander

'07 FJ Cruiser

TLCA #6727 / UFWDA
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

Quote:
LandCruiserSteve previously said: View Post
A very appropriate tribute to one of the most legendary rigs on this forum and to the man who built it.

Thank you, Mike, for the inspiration that you've given to all of us.

X2 - absolutely an unbelievable build.

2007 4X4 Titanium (Lithium) SOLD
_______________________________________________
Frank
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-01-2010, 08:14 AM
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

When the FJ was newly introduced and we all started modding them, Mike always raised the bar, when it came to new and unique.
Besides that... He and Anita are just super nice people.
He truly has an iconic build and deserves the very first "Rig of the Month", honors.
Thanks Mike for the inspiration , help and fun you have brought to so many of us.
Don

"The Rock"
https://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forum...8490-rock.html

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-01-2010, 08:17 AM
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

Might I suggest that the pic of the Raptor half way submerged in water be added to the collection here! Thanks

08 Titanium Silver:AT, Convenience Pkg, Upgrade #2, 4WD,A-Trac, Rear Dif Lock, Exp1 Front & Rear Bumpers,Superwinch, OEM Rack,OEM Sliders, 315/70/17 Kumho M/T w/ ATX Wheels,1.25" Spidertrax (front & back), 6" RC lift,TC UCA's, ICON Front Coilovers,AFE CAI,Custom Drive Shaft,Dirty Parts DB setup,Bandi Mount, Scuba Mod,Body Mount Chop, Razorback emblem on front skid.


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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-02-2010, 07:34 AM
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Re: Rig of the Month: August 2010

I nominate a picture of the Raptor to be incorporated into the forums banner at the top of the page.

2007 FJ 6MT black -n- black
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