4x4 Toyota Coaster-Cummins-F250 conversion

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4x4 Toyota Coaster-Cummins-F250 conversion

Unread post by 4x4Coaster » August 7th, 2008, 12:30 pm

‘Why ?’. Usually the first response!; well, same reason that most of the threads on this forum exist! There is nothing available to do what I want, can’t afford to spend $150k on a custom 4x4 bus so build it myself.

‘What ?’. Start with an ’87 SWB Toyota Coaster bus, add a Cummins 6B T/Diesel (5.9l straight six – 175HP, 550Nm – stock , easily modded to produce much more power) Use 2006 US build Superduty F250 front & rear axles, 5 Speed 5R110 auto & NP273 Transfer case. Original rear leaf spring over Ford axle, front Ford coil sprung with radius arm suspension.

‘When ?’. It’s already underway. Physical work started May ’08. Thinking, researching & planning; been going on for years. In fact for 7 years (sounds like a Biblical curse!), since 2000, when I first saw a 4x4 Coaster built by ‘Out of Town 4WD’ in Newcastle, I have been dreaming of having my own.

‘Where ?’. Well, the first problem was the Coaster didn’t fit in my garage. Height of the bus was about the same as the door height but due to slope of approach it wouldn’t fit, besides, once lifted another 200mm as a 4x4 it will never fit. So one weekend after lots of thinking, planning, buying materials, it happened. Raised the roller door about 400 mm, luckily there was enough length in the door so it didn’t have to be replaced.

‘Who ?’. I guess I’m like a lot of the guys in these forums, self taught in many skills through interest or necessity and enjoy doing it myself, which of course makes it affordable. I’m a carpenter by trade, have been playing with vehicles since before I could even drive (I can remember having to stand on the bumper to check the water & oil of the old family FC Holden before heading off on the ritual Sunday picnic!) and I guess I just thought if I don’t do it soon it will never happen!

‘How ?’. Isn’t that the fun part! I know there are going to be some difficult problems to solve but not everything has to be resolved straight away. Deal with what I can at the time, prioritise. If I can’t see the solution yet, just wait, something will reveal itself eventually. Use this forum as a source of knowledge & experience to help get over some of the hurdles, some things are not essential in getting the vehicle functioning and can be left till after it’s actually mobile again. Our vehicles evolve & change with our needs so no point stressing about it being perfect from day 1!

Here is the original 3B diesel coming out....

All running gear removed and up on stands.....

All rear suspension removed...

Front door removed so engine crane could be used to lower engine to the ground & then drag it out from under the bus...
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Unread post by boof » August 7th, 2008, 12:34 pm

Its definately different will be good to see it come together :thumb:
2014 FJ with a few mods

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Help with attachments / pics!

Unread post by 4x4Coaster » August 7th, 2008, 12:44 pm

Thanks Boof, now I just need to figure out how to get the pics in to my posts! any suggestions, I read the FAQ's but that didn't help much.

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Unread post by boof » August 7th, 2008, 1:07 pm

There is a good description of how to do it in the photography section :thumb:
2014 FJ with a few mods

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Unread post by Celt's » August 7th, 2008, 1:14 pm

Looking forward to seeing this come together, my father-in-law has been wanting to do something similar with his bus.
[align=center][size=134][color=darkgreen]99 SR5 Dual Cab Lux[/color][/size][/align]

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Unread post by dazzler66 » August 7th, 2008, 1:15 pm

Good luck

Have you spoke to norm at out of town. I spoke with him last year as we were thinking of getting one like his for a tour operation.

Have fun now

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Unread post by Matto » August 7th, 2008, 2:22 pm

Awesome! Going to be keeping an eye on this one! I love a bit of different thinking!

You might benefit from having a look at Rob's work (if you've not already seen it), and dropping him a couple of emails. Wothahellizat is definatly one of my all-time favourite offroad machines!

Website here: http://www.robgray.com/index_files/index_wot.php

What's your end goal with this? To keep the full coaster bus configuration and use it as a tour vehicle, or convert the back into a camper/motorhome and go touring?

Matto :)
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Unread post by 4x4Coaster » August 7th, 2008, 2:47 pm

Thanks Matto,
I have seen the 'Wothahellizat' build up, it is amazing what some people build!
I want to be able to go touring, tow the ski boat & go camping at lakes,(so a camper trailer was no good to me) go 4wd-ing. Just a basic camper in side, double bed, storage, cooking, fridge, running water, no onboard loo or stuff like that, maybe an external heat exchange shower, a practical and capable vehicle, not a 4x4 house!


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Unread post by DJR96 » August 7th, 2008, 7:51 pm

Great work Glen!!:waycool:

One very unique bus. Will be watching this come together for sure. Keep the photo's coming. I know you've got more.:D

It may surprise many that the bus has virtually the same GVM as the F250. So the axles are made to go in.;)
Cheers, Dave.
RCV Supertourer build:- [url]http://www.4wdaction.com.au/forum/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=36370[/url]

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Unread post by schafe » August 7th, 2008, 8:51 pm

:thumb: This is gunner be cool, i got overtaken by one of these on the long hill on buladelah bypass(sounded like it had a big old skool v8 in it), since then i 2 have had wild ideas what they could become.
Ill be keeping a eye on this.

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Unread post by keebie » August 7th, 2008, 9:30 pm

Big project Glen, did the first two years of my body making apprenticeship on buses and grew to hate them! As a finnished product though it should be a very practical tourer, good luck.
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Burn the Boats! there's no going back now!

Unread post by 4x4Coaster » August 7th, 2008, 10:04 pm

Dazzler66 - I haven't spoken to anyone at OOT but know others who have contacted them and since Fred retired, no one there is apparenty interested in the coasters. I believe they still use them for tours in the sand up there. As far as I know, Freds were the only ones with coil front ends, all the others had leaf spring front ends. Also I think nearly every conversion has stuck with the toyota engine. I think I can say with confidence I'm the first to put a cummins in a coaster!

If anyone has knowledge of other 4x4 coasters please post it here.

Welcome also to keebie & schafe, Celts and DJR96 - if any of you haven't checked out DJR96's SuperTourer you are definitely in the minority! Without doubt the most ambitious & advanced project you'll see in these threads for a very long time!

OK, some more pics-

Looking down the chassis with original cross member still in place. Original front suspension was independent wishbone with torsion bars. You can also see the steering drag link in front of the cross member.

There is no going back now - front cross member cut out, the only way its coming out of the garage is as a 4x4!

For the moment I've left some of the bracketry in place incase it can be used to mount the new components. You can see the bell crank, Idler arm and drag link still in place. I also spent a couple of very messy days scraping all the 20 years of accumulated grease & dirt off the chassis from front to rear - glad I don't have to do that again!

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Unread post by croozy » August 8th, 2008, 6:12 am

one of my old mans mates did this to a coaster back when i was a kid. I think from memory he even put a holden v8 & an auto in it. good luck with the build
I just got lost in thought. It was unfamiliar territory.


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Unread post by Gojeep » August 8th, 2008, 11:04 am

Great to see such an interesting project.
Will keep an eye on this thread. ;)
Cheers, Marcus

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Unread post by MJ80 » August 8th, 2008, 12:07 pm

wow keep us posted !

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