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TUNDRA CARGO AND PAYLOAD MANAGEMENT

Saturday, November 20th, 2010
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Cargo and Payload Management Control should be a priority for Tundra Owners and truck owners in general.tundra bed

Ever wonder what those cut outs and slots are in the bed of the Tundra?…And what about “headache racks” and why are they so popular with many truck owners? Some like the rugged look but most appreciate the safety factor.

 

A headache rack is a metal guard mounted at the front of the pickup bed that helps protect the cab and rear window from loose objects. They come in many styles, including tubular cross bars and stout wire mesh. Headache racks serve as a reminder that unrestrained cargo can be dangerous to cab occupants as well as vehicles or pedestrians near the truck.

The Tundra has numerous features to assist in cargo management control. Here’s a quick look:

2-tier loading – This feature is stamped on the inside of the bed. Four horizontal slots–two on each side of the bed–are located on the shelf by the wheelwell. These slots are directly opposite each other and support a length of 2×4 or 2×6 wood cut to the width of the cargo bed. These two pieces of wood now act like crossmembers and can separate cargo from the load floor. For example, PVC pipe can be stored on the floor and a load of 4×8 plywood can go on top of the wood crossmembers with easy access to both.

Bed dividers – Vertical slots–two on each side–are also stamped in the bed sides. These ribs add structural support to the inside of the cargo bed and can be used to divide the bed to help separate different types of cargo. Lengths of 2×8 or 2×10 wood cut to the width of the bed can be inserted into the slots to create partitions. This allows the owner to keep different building materials, such as dirt, rocks and wood chips, separated from each other.

Tie-down loops – D-shaped tie-down loops are anchored at each corner of the bed. These loops are very effective at securing hooks at the end of motorcycle-style tie downs. Some trucks use a bat-wing cleat as a factory tie down.

Deck Rail – This available feature is the ultimate tie-down system. This innovative utility uses C-channel brackets mounted inside the bed rails and along the header rail behind the cab. Large tie-down cleats can be positioned and tightened anywhere along the rails. The system comes with four cleats but additional cleats can be purchased for specific cargo needs.

The aftermarket offers numerous innovative cargo-control accessories that will help a wide range of customer needs. Some of the more popular items, like tie-down straps and spider nets, are strong sellers in the parts department. Other useful items include bungee cords, canvas or plastic wraps (to protect against weather) and even bed-mounted tool boxes. Check out TruckCruisin for more great stuff.

Of course, a locking hard tonneau cover is one of the best ways to secure cargo if the load isn’t bulky or oversized.

TOYOTA IS CONFIDENTLY PLANNING ALL NEW TUNDRA

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010
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The 2007-10 Toyota Tundra hasn’t been quite the success that Toyota envisioned, that is over taking the Ford F-150, but that doesn’t mean the automaker is ready to give up on its half-ton hauler. There are sources reporting that Toyota is confidently planning a thorough redesign of the Tundra. tundra truck

The current Tundra was designed from the ground up to compete with full-size pickups from Chrysler, Ford and GM. On paper, the story was compelling. The Tundra featured a strong 5.7-liter V-8, could tow up to 10,800 pounds and was available in regular, extended-cab and crew-cab configurations.

Toyota was so confident in the strength of its new truck and the American truck market that it invested more than $1 billion to build a dedicated assembly plant in Texas with the capacity to build 200,000 Tundras a year in addition to a second Tundra factory in Indiana that could produce 100,000 annually.

The Tundra is in fact a great truck and came close to meeting its annual sales goals of 200,000 trucks per year in the first year but  missed each year since, suffering from the effects of both a terrible economy and a media onslaught over alleged quality and safety issues. About 460,000 Tundras have been built since 2007, and less than 80,000 were sold in 2009, a bad economic year.

In light of tough new fuel-economy rules set to take effect by 2016. some have wondered will Toyota continue to invest in the Tundra?

Sources say that indeed the next Tundra will arrive by 2014, just in time to take on all-new full-size light-duty pickups expected from GM, Nissan and Ford. That time period is looking like it will be a replay of 2007-08, which also had a fast cadence of new half-ton introductions.

But while Toyota is keeping the faith in Tundra, at least for one more generation, the Japanese automaker is said to be phasing out the Toyota Sequoia full-size SUV that’s based on the Tundra platform. We hear the big people-mover will be killed at the end of this life cycle.

BALANCING OFF ROAD TIRES

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
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Balancing off road tires can be a challenge. The tires on Tacoma, 4Runner, FJ Cruiser, and Tundra can be heavy and the tread easily damaged. For Example, when the tires are aired down they can sometimes slip on the rim so the balance point moves. In wet muddy conditions, mud can adhere to the inside of the wheel throwing  the tire out of balance.counter act bead application

The traditional way of balancing tires uses static mounted weights on the rims to counter balance the heavy points in the tire/rim combination.  With the ever changing condition on off road tires and rims these balance points can change very quickly.

Bead balancing systems have been used on over the road truck tires for some time and they are now finding there way into off- road applications. So when planning to mount custom Wheels and specialized Tires it may be wise to give balancing beads a try. There are companies such as Counteract Balancing Beads, that will send you bags for this installation.

The beads can be added during the tire mounting so no additional balancing need be done on the wheels. Off-Road enthusiasts who take lengthy off-road trips report feeling no balance vibration from the tires. The application seems to have worked very effectively.

An added benefit of the balancing beads is there are no weights mounted on the outside of the rims which leads to a much cleaner installation.

FEWER SEQUOIA, TUNDRA, AND 4RUNNER MODELS COULD BE AROUND THE CORNER

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010
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A little publizied act occurred this week that went largely unnoticed and could affect the future availability of Sequoia, Tundra and even 4 Runner . sequoia grillePresident Obama has forced the big three US carmakers, and their unions, to accept tough mileage rules for cars and SUVs. The rules will cut emissions from vehicles by more than a third over the next four years.

Whether the new rules end America’s love affair with huge cars like Sequoia remains to be seen. But they are being introduced at a time when SUV sales are at a fraction of their peak level five years ago. Their demise coincides with the country’s first mass-produced “plug-in” electric car, which finally rolled off a Michigan production line this week.

From 2016, new cars and SUVs will have to deliver an average of 35.5 miles per gallon, comparable for the first time with European and Japanese requirements.

SUV mileage under the new regime is expected to average 28.8mpg, or nearly three times that of the Hummer H1 that Arnold Schwarzenegger once drove into Times Square in New York to begin the vehicle’s transition from armoured personnel carrier into celebrity runabout.

The new rules end a notorious loophole in US law by which SUVs were exempt from emissions standards that applied to cars. This made them so much more profitable that at the peak of the sport utility boom, a single Ford plant was generating up to $15 million a day in pre-tax profits.

The rules were welcomed yesterday by the industry and environmentalists. Of course, The US Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, had little choice but to accept the standards after the $25 billion bailout of Chrysler and General Motors.

The Big Three producers will have to spend about $52 billion to upgrade engines, power trains and air-conditioning systems to meet the requirements. The average cost of a new car or SUV is expected to rise by $1,000 as a result, meaning that the future of American motoring depends on consumers’ willingness to pay a modest premium for old-fashioned cars — or a larger one for something very different. Higher prices and an uncertain economy under our present government will most likely cause manufacturers including Toyota to be very cautious with inventory levels on the large vehicles like Sequoia, Tundra and 4Runner.

US motorists have shown repeatedly that their affection for big cars rebounds as gas prices fall, but the new regulations reflect a long-term trend. On average, Ford sold 412,000 Explorer SUVs each year from 1995 to 2003. By 2008 sales had slumped to 78,000. GM has sold the Hummer brand to a Chinese rival and SUV sales fell overall by 52 per cent last year alone.

The new standards are based on a 2007 Supreme Court Ruling that reclassified carbon dioxide as a pollutant. They will be enforced by the Environmental Protection Agency, whether Congress approves or not.

TUNDRA USA ROOTS

Sunday, May 10th, 2009
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The Tundra is assembled in Texas and has always been assembled in America.

Did you know that one of the requirements in NASCAR is that the vehicle brand represented on the track must be, under their rules, “American-made.” When Toyota petitioned NASCAR in 2002 to join the truck-racing series, Toyota officials had to demonstrate that the Tundra was assembled in Indiana and that Toyota as a company had a strong American presence with more than 30,000 workers employed throughout the country.

Toyota engineers based in California then developed a pushrod V8 engine with carburetor induction to satisfy the rules. In 2004, Toyota entered the Craftsman Truck Series (now called Camping World Truck Series) and the Tundra has won the manufacturer’s points championship four of the last five years.

In other words, Tundra wouldn’t be allowed to race NASCAR if the sanctioning body didn’t consider the truck to be “American–made,” under their rules.

The Tundra will no longer be produced in Indiana as production has shifted to Toyota Motor Manufacturing Texas (TMMTX). This 220,000-square-foot facility outside of San Antonio opened in 2006 and employs more than 2,000 workers. Another 2,000 workers are employed by numerous suppliers that set up shop on the plant grounds to produce parts specifically for the Tundra.

Besides NASCAR, Tundra is a part of many other activities with rich American heritage. The Tundra races off-road in SCORE and CORR competitions. Tundra is heavily involved in professional bass fishing by sponsoring numerous high-profile anglers at national championship events. Tundra dealers are often found sponsoring or contributing to local recreation and charity activities.

The majority of Tacomas are also assembled in the United States at the NUMMI plant in Fremont, California–which is operated under an agreement with General Motors. Tacoma’s D cab is produced in Baja, Mexico, where all the truck’s cargo beds are manufactured.

TOYOTA TUNDRA AND TACOMA POPULAR MODIFICATIONS

Saturday, March 14th, 2009
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Here are some Tundra & Tacoma Popular Modifications that Owners like to add to their vehicles…

A recent study by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) identified the most popular aftermarket modifications for trucks. The results were based on a survey of more than 3,000 enthusiasts who subscribe to automotive magazines or online forums.

SEMA has crunched the data even further and identified the 10 most popular modifications for Tundra and Tacoma owners. Here’s that list:

Air intake – performance filter replacement 47%Custom Wheels  41%                                                                                                                                                                    
Battery 38%
Plus-size tires 38%
Suspension lift kit 35%
Exhaust kit 32%
Performance fluids – oils, lubricants 32%
Brake caliper/rotor upgrades 29%
Bedliner – spray-on or drop-in 29%
Suspension – springs, shocks, sway bars 29%

Toyota owners have slightly different tastes than other truck owners….

Here’s a sampling of sought-after items for competitive models in order of popularity:

Chevrolet Silverado: exhaust kit, cold-air intake conversion, polish/wax, plus-size tires and custom wheels
Dodge Ram: exhaust kit, cold-air intake conversion, trailer hitch, polish/wax, bedliner
Ford F-Series: exhaust kit, polish/wax, cold-air intake conversion, performance air-filter replacement, performance fluids
Nissan Titan: window tinting, alarm system, polish/wax, stereo speakers, custom upholstery

In general, exhaust kits were the most popular for truck owners followed by polishes and waxes, air-filter replacement, cold-air intake conversions and performance lubricants. The next five were bedliners, plus-size tires, trailer hitch, window tinting and finally suspension modifications.