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2002 Limited 4WD

Discussion in '1Gen Sequoia Build Threads' started by Sal R., Apr 11, 2017.

  1. mulze42

    mulze42 Member

    Good to know. I still need to install my rear diff breather but apparently we haven't decided to leave the lower 30's in Wisconsin so maybe next week.
  2. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    With the completion of the rear diff breather mod, finally got around to this mod.

    The removal and replacement of the rear bumper left my gas and vent lines exposed to debris kicked up by the tire.

    If I hadn't sold my bumpers, I would've probably salvaged it off the rear bumper. Oh well.


    With some left over rubber mats cut to shape, came up with this cheap simple cover. Time will tell if this holds up in this location. Worked out great up front, so far.



    One more thing checked off for summit prep.

  3. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    MODIFICATION: Dobinson Rear Coil Springs

    Upgrade to a better spring that can handle the added load, but minimize rear lift.

    My build is all about being low slung and minimizing lift. Up until recently, there were no Sequoia-specific springs. Had to "borrow" from the Land Cruiser 100-series crowd. Thankfully, Dobinson stepped up and created an offering.

    Dobinson Rear Coil Springs C59-345 (425mm free height, 17mm wire, 212 lb/in spring rate)

    DURATION: 2 hours

    COST: $195

    Lots of documentation on this already.

    1. Jack up car and put on stands supported at the frame
    2. Support axle using jack
    3. Remove bolt from lower shocks and remove shocks from pin at the axle point
    4. Lower jack to droop the axle
    5. Replace springs
    The Dobinson coils have a "similar" free height as the OEM springs, but has thicker wire and a higher spring rate to carry an additional load. Dobinson advertises a 1.75" lift.

    The following are my results ground to fender through wheel centerline (34s@38psi measured actual):

    Before: 37-1/8"
    After: 38"

    Configuration is in daily driver mode. Everyday-carry gear, armor, and spare. Mission accomplished!

    This netted almost an inch of lift. It's a good alternative for folks looking to level their ride.


    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
    BenK likes this.
  4. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    MODIFICATION: Califab Rear Upper and Lower Control Arms

    Reinforce the rear control arms and improve articulation.

    I've been lucky that I haven't bent my lower arms yet over rocks I could not bypass. So when I saw these arms become available for the Sequoia, I jumped at the chance despite that fact that I probably should be fixing other shit.

    Califab rear upper and lower controls arms
    M14 washers (qty. 15)

    DURATION: 3 hours

    COST: $525

    The remove and replace is straightforward.
    1. Jack up car and put on stands supported at the frame
    2. Support axle using jack
    3. Disconnect abs wire supports on DS/PS upper control arm
    4. Disconnect brake line support bracket from DS upper control arm
    5. Disconnect parking brake brackets from DS/PS lower control arm
    6. Move through each arm and remove and replace
    Upper control arm:

    Lower control arm:

    I set the Califab arm lengths to OEM lengths. My alignment was good and tires were wearing out evenly. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

    To complete the install of the Califab arms, you need some M14 washers to act as shims since the heim joints are not as wide as OEM.

    Upper arm shims:

    Lower arm shims:


    2018-04-20 11_52_36.jpg

    As you can see, the zerk fittings are faced down and exposed.

    As a result, rear lower control arm skids just jumped up in my priority list.
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
    BenK likes this.
  5. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    TECH: Dial in the Rear Suspension

    Check clearances for stuffing 34s in the rear, size the bumpstops, and take measurements for spring/shock applications.

    I have had the Bilstein 5100s, PN: 33-187174, for a few years now. Considering they were for lifted FJ Cruisers, I've often questioned they're actual performance considering it was a popular mod and everyone says that "it's all good."

    Overall, I've never been happy with the Bilsteins and I've pondered on what to get, but with no measurements, it's hard to find a shock that could possibly work.

    Add in the fact that I've never checked clearances with the 34s in the rear, it was time to get off my laurels (finally) and stamp this out.

    DURATION: 2 hours


    The idea is to cycle the rear suspension from full stuff to the bumpstops to max droop and measure the required spring and shock lengths.

    I, basically,...
    1. Remove the rear coils
    2. Unbolted the shock from the lower pin
    3. Cycle the suspension using jack
    Stuffed on bumpstops:


    At max droop:

    With the Califab arms installed, I found that the downtravel limiting component was the panhard bar. To a lesser extent, the parking brake cable. Not much extra slack there.

    For springs, all measurements are from the bottom of the rubber isolator to the perch on the axle.

    For shocks, all measurements are from the metal mount surface to the pin centerline on the axle.

    At bump:
    Compressed Spring length: 7-3/8"
    Compressed Shock length: 17-5/8"

    Max droop:
    Extended Spring length: 20-3/8"
    Extended Shock length: 29-3/4"

    OEM/Dobinson rear coils:
    Extended Shock length: 26-1/2"

    As a result of this test, it confrmed my suspicion that the 5100s are completely inadequate as a shock replacement. Even when using OEM/Dobinson rear springs, the 33-187174 5100 shock is too short and is constantly using up the entirety of its length long before the OEM springs fully extend.

    Thankfully, the bumpstops do not need to be modified for the 34s (295/70r18). There is plenty of clearance to stuff 35s in the wheel well with margin using OEM bumpstops.

    That's one less thing to worry about.

    In short, to maximize articulation, in theory, you need a spring 20-3/8" tall that can collapse to 7-3/8" mated with a shock that has a compressed length of 17-5/8" and extended length of 29-3/4". A linear spring probably could achieve that. A progressive spring might not, especially one that tall.

    Probably will need the Califab links to achieve these numbers since the OEM rubber bushings tend to bind and limit articulation, much like what the OEM panhard is doing at the moment. You could probably achieve another couple of inches with a heim'ed and polyurethane panhard bar...
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
    BenK likes this.
  6. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    TL;DR 5100 rear shocks, or any FJ Cruiser shock, are not at all "good" for the Sequoia. And shame on you if you still recommend them after seeing this post.

    So, just HOW BAD are FJ 5100 shocks (33-187174) on Sequoias?

    I'm glad you asked because here's some tech for you.

    Dobinson coil length: 16.7"
    Dobinson installed coil length: 11"

    5100 extended length: 23.5"
    5100 installed length: 21.375" (measured from upper mounting surface to eye center)

    When the suspension cycles, the spring can potentially extend +5.7". Meanwhile, the 5100 can only extend +2.125".

    In an OEM/Dobinson application, the 5100 is at 91% of its spec length.

    What this means for you OME 286x users with >2" of lift is that your 5100 is fully extended all the time, even sitting in a parking lot.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018
    cja89 and BenK like this.
  7. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    TL;DR LC100 rear shocks are also short for use on the Sequoia.

    So I've addressed the FJ Cruiser 5100s are not a good shock for Sequoia.

    What about Land Cruiser 100-series shocks?


    Dobinson coil length: 16.7"
    Dobinson installed coil length: 11"

    Bilstein 5100 extended 23.5"
    Bilstein 5100 installed: 21.375"

    OME 60002/60003 extended: 24.09"
    OME 60002/60003 installed: 21.375"

    You're better off than 5100s, but not by much. At least, you have some usable travel than 5100s. Because the spring potential travel is +5.7" and the shock travel is 2.715", you'll max out the OME shock before you max out the spring.

    So for you OME 286x users with >2" of lift, your near or at fully extended all the time while parked.

    A viable option are LC80 series shocks, but may still limit articulation for taller springs like 2860, 2861, 2863, &2863J.

    OME 60020L/600071L extended: 26.5"

    Confirmed that LC80 shocks are also a stem and eye fitment.

    However, these are valved for LC80 springs with rates 250-320 lbf/in, whereas LC100 shocks are valved for 220-300 lbf/in.

    So, LC80-series shocks is a better fit, but will be a stiffer ride.

    Additionally, a Nissan Patrol Y60, Y61 shock might also work, but it would seem that it's and eye to eye fitment. As a result, an adaptor would be needed.

    OME 60015L extended: 28.19"

    However, these shocks are valved for springs rated 290-470 lbf/in. So they're even stiffer than LC80 OME shocks.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
    jk80 and mulze42 like this.
  8. dstgean

    dstgean New Member


    Some vendors show extended and compressed length so you can make a better choice. No affiliation etc. Although I see several part numbers that are close to your requirements, you might have to keep searching for a longer travel shock if you don't want to install limit straps to save shocks from topping out.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
  9. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    Thanks for the info. I have some 5125s on order already that might work. It's en route and will report back on what I find.

    The shock I ordered would work, but it would be too long for my build. It would sure help fellows with super tall springs like the OME 2863, though.

    I don't know if I can get away from using limit straps. I want to eek out every last inch of suspension travel, but I don't want the shock as the downtravel limiter.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
  10. angerhater

    angerhater New Member

    thanks for all this good information Sal. I think I owe you a beer or two...
  11. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    No problem at all.

    Only thanks I need is to spread the word to people to stop using FJ Cruiser and LC100 shocks on 1st gen Sequoias.
    mulze42 likes this.
  12. Nisken

    Nisken Member

    Icon will make you custom rear shocks, all you need to do is give them your measurements. They quoted me $150 a shock. they will do the same for a front suspension vehicle. I personally use LC springs and FJ rear Bilsteins because that's what is commonly used. However, i noticed after installing my rear springs that my rear Bilsteins would now reach full travel after going over a small speed bump. My intention is to eventually customize the suspension via Icon, possibly matching everything to the Dobinson suspension, assuming Dobinsons doesn't put together a suspension kit by then.

    Also, consider using your new arms to correct your wheel base and drive-line angle if you didn't plan to do so already, correct geometry can make a huge difference. I agree that someone needs to produce an adjustable panhard bar. Good work! Glad to see someone who went with Dobinsons.

    For reference, in case some one searches this topic someday:
    Lower control arms, adjust wheelbase
    Upper control arms, adjust pinion angle
    Panhard bar, locate rear axle

    Would be awesome if someone made a complete kit specifically for our trucks. I know a lot of guys wouldn't bother with all of this but proper geometry can save driveshaft, rear diffs, tires, and handling.
  13. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    The plan is a custom shock once I've gathered all the dimensions. I wouldn't hold my breath about Dobinson putting out a shock application.

    I've got loading requirements, and spring height with rates. With the shock dims on hand, can get a properly valved shock tailored to the weight of the Sequoia with armor and gear.

    Because my build is low slung, there has no real change to my pinion angles. I don't suffer from the pitfalls of lifting a vehicle. So, no need to adjust the control arm lengths at this time. My tires wear evenly and there are no unwanted vibrations at all speeds up to 90mph.


    Rumor mill has it that Califab might make a panhard for 1gen Sequoias.
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018
  14. Shawntt17

    Shawntt17 New Member

    In this pic I cant tell did you leave the plastic box or just use it as a mold. I have mine all apart and have been debating on weather or not I want to just fiberglass the outside and inside of the plastic box to retain the mounting locations, or just use it for a mold. I am curious as to what you decided to do.
  15. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    I separated the cubby "box" from the trim panel by carefully cutting circular, plastic welded, tabs on the backside and molded the fiberglass enclosure to fit inside.

    Once the glass was cured, I wrapped it in dynamat, stuffed the sub enclosure into the cubby box, and reattached the cubby/sub box assembly to the panel using short self-tapping screws.

    I did reuse the cubby box to keep the sub box in place.

    If I had to it all over again, I would not bother reinstalling the plastic cubby box and do away with it completely.

    I'd set the sub box where it needed to sit. Secure it with some brackets and hardware to the sheetmetal body, and put back the trim on top of it.

    Having the sub box assembled with the big trim panel makes it an incredible pain to remove when I need to get under there.
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018
  16. Shawntt17

    Shawntt17 New Member

    Awesome thank you, this is exactly what I was wondering.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  17. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    Next time I get under there for whatever reason, I'm just going to separate the sub box/cubby from the panel.
  18. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    MODIFICATION: Rear Limit Straps

    Limit the downward articulation to keep the rear coils from falling out.

    With the advent of longer shocks, it donned on me that without a swaybar connected, the rear suspension with the Califab rear control arms has more droop travel than the length of Dobinson coils. Left unchecked, it could prove problematic.

    Clevis (qty. 2)
    10" 3-Ply Strap (qty. 2)
    Steel Sleeve (qty. 2)
    Grade 8, 1/2" diameter bolt, 4-1/2" long (qty. 2)
    Grade 8 1/2" washers (qty. 4)
    Grade 8 1/2" bolts (qty. 4)

    DURATION: 4 hours

    COST: $100

    Set the length down to the absolute lowest limit to keep the spring from falling out. It's kinda the point, right?

    All in all, straightforward.

    1. Remove rear coils
    2. Cycle suspension up and down to look for an open spot to mount sleeve
    3. Prep the area
    4. Tack sleeve on frame
    5. Install clevis
    6. Install strap
    7. Bolt to lower control arm
    8. Set height limit on the clevis
    9. Cycle suspension up and down to check for interferences
    10. Finish welds
    11. Re-assemble
    Here's where the sleeve was mounted:
    2018-04-20 10_42_56.jpg

    Droop down to lower control arm
    2018-04-20 10_41_48.jpg

    To mount onto the lower control arm, I replaced the lower control arm bolt with a longer grade 8 1/2" bolt and sandwiched it to the control arm retaining bolt.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2018
    mulze42 likes this.
  19. mulze42

    mulze42 Member

    Sal. Just so I understand, the only reason the limit straps are needed for you is because you are using the Califab lower control arms which are adjustable? I've been creeping on the FB group (refuse to logon so I can't comment) but have followed the progress and noticed one guy just installed Icon rear shocks with his 2682s so his solution would be a reasonable solution for us FJC 5100s folks.

    Edit: As of today it appears that you guys are still working out a solution. Will keep observing and thank you for bringing this to the forefront.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2018
  20. Sal R.

    Sal R. Active Member

    I'm using limit straps so I can test/install shocks longer than my springs can allow before falling out. Even then, ill be installing the longest shock allowable so I maximize my articulation. In a situation like that, limit straps are a must.

    The links are adjustable, but that's to adjust caster and pinion angles. The Califab links added another 3-4" of downtravel over OEM making the panhard bar the limiting component.

    With OEM links, the rubber bushings react to restrict travel, which is why I believe limit straps won't be necessary.

    My conversation with Reed regarding the LC80/100 icon rear shocks leads me to believe that it might fit the bill for OME users with OEM links. The shock extended length looks to be about 25-25.5" and he did not have to jack the axle to fit the lower shock eye.
    mulze42 likes this.

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