Hedgehog - LC100 build thread

SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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Thought I ought to start a build thread on the cruiser. Over the next year I will build my 100 Series for a 3 week shake-down in Iceland in 2014 in preparation for our round the world journey in "the Hedgehog" starting 2015. Our trips are expected to be 6 months in length and go to most continents over a 5 year ++ period. Initial trips will be in North and South America.

Base concept is to purchase a low mileage LC and modify it to permit selfrecovery (we will be travelling alone); have extended operational range; have some comforts; allow emergency on-board sleeping; be ultra reliable and hopefully deal with hard operational envelope; emphasis on personal and vehicle security.

The story so far:
A good very low mileage LC100 has been purchased and has come with good functional additions and a couple of minor problems. At 35,000 miles it is barely run-in.
 

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yogi

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I am in ireland
Feb 18, 2013
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mullingar, ireland
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Nice truck, I can see why the mileage is so low, it must have been off the road a long time to grow yellow moss on the number plates :shock:
 

yogi

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I am in ireland
Feb 18, 2013
963
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mullingar, ireland
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Actually though it is a nice truck, why do you intend to fit poly brushes?

OEM or any sort of rubber allows the bushes to do what they are meant to do and cushion the solid parts, harder bushes just transfer stress onto the fixing points of these parts of the suspension system. A complete set of OEM bushes for an 80 was about £300 when bought overseas for example, with about another £70 of shipping. Not expensive or difficult to replace either (just a bit of a pain to do). Sorry but the logic of poly bushes has really escaped me, it seems similar to replacing springs with pieces of angle iron!
 
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SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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Actually though it is a nice truck, why do you intend to fit poly brushes?

OEM or any sort of rubber allows the bushes to do what they are meant to do and cushion the solid parts, harder bushes just transfer stress onto the fixing points of these parts of the suspension system. A complete set of OEM bushes for an 80 was about £300 when bought overseas for example, with about another £70 of shipping. Not expensive or difficult to replace either (just a bit of a pain to do). Sorry but the logic of poly bushes has really escaped me, it seems similar to replacing springs with pieces of angle iron!
I can understand and have heard of those concerns but to some degree it depends on the stiffness of the replacement material. Also with a 10 year old truck then the original fit bushes will probably be past their best. My theory is that it will be a fit and forget exercise. I don't fancy sourcing bushes of any sort in the middle of nowhere, let alone replacing them and having an immobilised vehicle. I have poly bushed previous vehicles without any issues. The thing to consider is that in remote areas you could be many 100's of miles from civilisation let alone parts supply chain - in my view belt & braces. So whether rubber or poly - the car gets fully re-bushed before we go as there will be 1000's of miles of washboard to overcome. A lot of people replace their bushes with very stiff material poly but the material compliance is key and for certain parts forms an important part of how things work: softer where it needs to be and harder elsewhere
 

SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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So the pentagon supaglass film and tints have gone on. Excellent job by Pentagon glass in Reading. Essentially two layers - the clear pentagon polymer on all windows except the front and rear (too curved) and then the tint of choice goes on top. In this case 'midnight' VLT = 16%. Could have gone even darker with 'limo' VLT = 6%, but decided that being able to see out the back in the dark narrow lanes would be good. Legally can go to 70% light transmission ('light smoke') but I decided to remain clear (OEM glass has a tint and the pentagon film has a very slight loss too VLT = 84%, solar energy rejection = 22%) on the front row windows as some countries have some tough rules. The tint also keeps a lot of the solar energy out 56% rejection in my case. The glass is removed, thoroughly cleaned, the films are slipped on a water film into place and squeegee'd, heat cured and replaced. They mill the window edges so that they film appears to be coloured glass rather than applied film
 

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yogi

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I am in ireland
Feb 18, 2013
963
32
48
mullingar, ireland
Garage
I can understand and have heard of those concerns but to some degree it depends on the stiffness of the replacement material. Also with a 10 year old truck then the original fit bushes will probably be past their best. My theory is that it will be a fit and forget exercise. I don't fancy sourcing bushes of any sort in the middle of nowhere, let alone replacing them and having an immobilised vehicle. I have poly bushed previous vehicles without any issues. The thing to consider is that in remote areas you could be many 100's of miles from civilisation let alone parts supply chain - in my view belt & braces. So whether rubber or poly - the car gets fully re-bushed before we go as there will be 1000's of miles of washboard to overcome. A lot of people replace their bushes with very stiff material poly but the material compliance is key and for certain parts forms an important part of how things work: softer where it needs to be and harder elsewhere
I follow your logic about not replacing them in the middle of nowhere!

But why not simply replace them all with Toyota bushes now, rather than aftermarket polybushes??

There are plenty of 200k trucks out there with the original Toyota bushes in place, at least the large ones in the control arms etc so they are built to last. The point I'm trying to make is more that they can be purchased cheaply enough when compared to aftermarket plastic ones. I would rather have a bushing fail (which is pretty much certainly not going to stop you in your tracks completely in the wilderness) than a suspension mount in the middle of nowhere.

I like the tinting job.
 

SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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Well a whole lot more parts have arrived today - including the super-pro bushes :).

The ARB locker and high output compressor, purge valve, Toyota taper bearings
Wheel carrier for the second spare - it has come in black - not sure whether that is a mistake or hobsons......either way I was going to spray the front and rear bars (but not sure whether to match the car silver, stick with black or stick with grey.....or something else. also got the reversing light to fit (as one carrier blots out half the light and 2 will blot out all the light). I don't fancy taking the bars off to spray them but then again doing it on the truck will probably look awful

Also got the snorkel & torsion bar strengthening plates.
 

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SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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I follow your logic about not replacing them in the middle of nowhere!

But why not simply replace them all with Toyota bushes now, rather than aftermarket polybushes??

There are plenty of 200k trucks out there with the original Toyota bushes in place, at least the large ones in the control arms etc so they are built to last. The point I'm trying to make is more that they can be purchased cheaply enough when compared to aftermarket plastic ones. I would rather have a bushing fail (which is pretty much certainly not going to stop you in your tracks completely in the wilderness) than a suspension mount in the middle of nowhere.

I like the tinting job.
Is there a particular bush/mount you have concerns over? Most of the bushes I've looked at are mounted into pretty solid steel bars, castings and mounts. I remember on my Defender there was one particularly vulnerable rear trailing arm forward mount bracket (so everyone said) but I never had trouble
 

warrenpfo

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Jul 21, 2010
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South Africa
I did try getting the paint code but ARB where not going to give it to me.

You can order the parts in black or grey well you could when I did and that's all I did at the time.
 

yogi

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I am in ireland
Feb 18, 2013
963
32
48
mullingar, ireland
Garage
Is there a particular bush/mount you have concerns over? Most of the bushes I've looked at are mounted into pretty solid steel bars, castings and mounts. I remember on my Defender there was one particularly vulnerable rear trailing arm forward mount bracket (so everyone said) but I never had trouble
When you hit a bump a very large amount of force is transmitted from the axle in a forwards or backwards direction through for example the control arms (its all geometry dependent obviously). That force is in turn transmitted though a large steel bar and into the bush. From here, no matter how sturdy the arm itself,its transmitted to a bolt positioned laterally (the weak way) and then directly to two relatively small welds (the mount) attached to the chassis. This magnifies it many times because the area is much smaller.

What protects is the damping effect of the bushing and only that.

If you follow the logic of polybushes (harder,therefore the benefit being they MAY live longer) to its conclusion, well then why not make the whole lot out of solid steel; its harder, stronger and longer lasting!!
You can't though because
1.Ride quality would be bone grinding (have you ever gone across a bumpy field fast in an old tractor)
2.The welds for the mount would break in no time.

There are lots of accounts of castor correction bushes causing failures on LCOOL for example. This is partly attributed to them being eccentric (hole not in the middle) but also because they are polybushes; this is why more hardcore offroaders often fit plates to correct castor after a lift, rather than eccentric bushes.

Its all a matter of opinion, but any bushing can be changed at the side of the road with a hacksaw blade, maybe a fire (to burn out the rubber part of the old one) and either a drift and a big hammer or a suitably sized race and big hammer. Its not going to be fun and it takes a while, but anyone can do it. Welding a chassis mount back on is another story (unless you are a very skillful battery welder and you have a couple of extra batteries to play with!!
 

SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
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Have questioned the Black/Grey wheel carrier issue with the supplier......they can't exactly say I got it wrong as the truck was in front of their faces when we were scoping the job. I'm not really fussed as it will get painted at some stage as even the ARB grey is different from part to part, although I now think grey is the best colour to go with the silver and black elements of the truck....either that or black....but definitely not silver.

The 80 Series front/rear locker switch ordered today so should provide a nice OEM feel to the extra locker gubbins - plenty of Carling switch slots for the compressor switch - I want this to be able to be operated separately as it will be used to air up the tyres

Had another whinge at BOAB for not getting me the price and availability info for the drawers + stuff I would like....the response is glacial and I am in the market to spend some serious money.....at this rate I'll do a direct import: it will be quicker and probably cheaper given the exchange rates
 

clivehorridge

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May 23, 2012
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There are lots of accounts of castor correction bushes causing failures on LCOOL for example. This is partly attributed to them being eccentric (hole not in the middle) but also because they are polybushes; this is why more hardcore offroaders often fit plates to correct castor after a lift, rather than eccentric bushes. [\QUOTE]

Cant fault any of the logic there yogi, only one thing, I've got castor correction bushes in rubber on my 80.

Sorry, don't ask me where from, they were replacements for the failed cc poly bushes (which lasted 6 years and 130k kms) as fitted by my friendly Toyota Service Workshop.

All my poly bushes will be replaced by rubber, as they wear out.:thumbup:

On the same theme, extreme rock crawlers for example, use metal pivots instead of bushings to eliminate wobble and uncontrolled movement, but the custom mounts to the chassis are mahoosive in comparison with stock mounts. Just my observation.
 

Scott

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Mar 17, 2010
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Essex
Hi Steve, nice to meet you and Fran at Lincomb. The truck is looking great, and your plans for the build mean that it'll be a great tourer once finish. I look forward to following your progress.

Nice window tints, sounds like they did a good job.

Cheers.
 

SteveS

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Jan 12, 2013
630
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Hi Steve, nice to meet you and Fran at Lincomb. The truck is looking great, and your plans for the build mean that it'll be a great tourer once finish. I look forward to following your progress.

Nice window tints, sounds like they did a good job.

Cheers.
Yes - good to meet you both in person
 

SteveS

Well-Known Member
Jan 12, 2013
630
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Got the reversing light fitted to the swing out carrier - spent quite a while to try to find a way to route the supplied wiring loom to the existing reversing light without drilling a hole in the body - to no avail

Took a while to remove the end cap of the roof rails/bars - which will come off soon to make way for the Hannibal rack. The covers are held in place with 1 sacrificial barbed stud and 2 barbed fingers. Can be seen in the pictures below. The sacrificial stud is yellow and the end can just be seen in the hole. The fingers stop the cover from being moved from back to front so the only way to remove is to lever straight up with a large screwdriver placed between the rubber gaiter and the metal plate within. Even with the yellow barb broken the other two barbed fingers keep the cover in place but less purposefully. The yellow barb appears replaceable.

I didn't remove the bars just yet as they will keep the water out until I have received the roof rack
 

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SteveS

Well-Known Member
Jan 12, 2013
630
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When you hit a bump a very large amount of force is transmitted from the axle in a forwards or backwards direction through for example the control arms (its all geometry dependent obviously). That force is in turn transmitted though a large steel bar and into the bush. From here, no matter how sturdy the arm itself,its transmitted to a bolt positioned laterally (the weak way) and then directly to two relatively small welds (the mount) attached to the chassis. This magnifies it many times because the area is much smaller.

What protects is the damping effect of the bushing and only that.

If you follow the logic of polybushes (harder,therefore the benefit being they MAY live longer) to its conclusion, well then why not make the whole lot out of solid steel; its harder, stronger and longer lasting!!
You can't though because
1.Ride quality would be bone grinding (have you ever gone across a bumpy field fast in an old tractor)
2.The welds for the mount would break in no time.

There are lots of accounts of castor correction bushes causing failures on LCOOL for example. This is partly attributed to them being eccentric (hole not in the middle) but also because they are polybushes; this is why more hardcore offroaders often fit plates to correct castor after a lift, rather than eccentric bushes.

Its all a matter of opinion, but any bushing can be changed at the side of the road with a hacksaw blade, maybe a fire (to burn out the rubber part of the old one) and either a drift and a big hammer or a suitably sized race and big hammer. Its not going to be fun and it takes a while, but anyone can do it. Welding a chassis mount back on is another story (unless you are a very skillful battery welder and you have a couple of extra batteries to play with!!
Yogi - luckily I knew the mechanical dynamics of loading. However, as you say it is a personal thing. If you haven't done so already you may like to take a look here at SuperPro site to get their take on poly and their own approach - not all polybushes are the same. http://www.superpro.eu.com/whysuperpro/whypolyurethane.aspx

I don't see myself at the side of the road in Mongolia with some batteries and welding rods but if I ever get to that point no doubt there will be a rousing chorus of "I told you so". If nothing else my truck will be a moving real world test platform for these bushes which I'll endeavour to report back on :)
 
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