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Freezin's Commuter Mazda/Weekend Wheelin Machine

Weekend's fruits:






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So some pointers for putting a 1998+ cab on a 93-97 TTB frame.

***1998-2000 cab swap on a TTB frame:

So this not a "bolt on affair". And I knew that from the beginning, but want to make a list of modifications that have to be done to make this work for future reference:


1996 has two bundles of cables going through the floor on the driver's side, in round grommets.

The 2000 only has one and its square...

...Have to cut holes in floorboard if you retain the older wiring setup. Easy fix with a 2" hole saw. Plug the grommets in and you are good to go.


Have to be spaced out ~1-1/16" per side. I used 6" c-channel

*Radiator Support:

Passenger side mount on body has to be modified and moved over or extended about ~3.5". Drivers side ~2.5". I used flat bar welded to the top of the brakcets after grinding out the lip.

2000 Radiator & Condensor too wide to use on TTB Frame

Condensor upper bolt holes work.

Radiator bolt holes do not. Make two brackets. Drill two holes in each. Weld a stud in one.

*Condensor Support:

Use the TTB support off the body. Passenger bolt lines up, the other has to be drilled or welded. This allows usage of original condenser. Weld it on (make sure its level.


Use the newer fan, the blades are deeper. Other wise the stock fan doesn't reach far enough into shroud.

*Wiper Motor:

If retaining the motor harness from the TTB frame, wiper motors will have to be swapped or the wiring will have to be modified.


Use the one off the newer cab, and cut and splice the MAF wiring so the connectors match.

*Interior Modules:

The 4x4 module and keyless entry module have to be relocated "somewhere"

I have not dealt with this yet so when I find a solution I'll post it up.

*Charcoal canister in motor bay has to be mounted with a bolt/sheet-metal screw on battery tray. Weld a short pc. of angle iron and use a sheetmetal screw. Easy fix.

*Motor bay ABS module has to be mounted in front of battery to header panel...sheet-metal screw or small bolts your choice.

***Everything else seems to be drop on and plug in at this point. If I run into other issues I'll post them here.



Radiator brackets:



Looks factory:



My TJM bumper don't fit :( might modify it or might sell it and get a tubing bender to make something different....




Got it running this weekend. Fired right up. Still have lots to do but I have transportation once again. And a whole truck worth of extra parts :icon_surprised:

Stripped the dash out:


Had to modify the 2000 HVAC blend box servo mount:




Getting ready to swap dash harnesses:


Beige dash stripped:


Grey dash stripped:


Beige dash equipped with Mazda dash harness and installed successfully:


Hole cut for frame harness:



Proof that it runs:


Well done- on both builds!

My dad bought a 1994 B4000 brand new in Green Bay, WI. It was the vehicle I learned to drive a clutch in. It is possibly the reason my love affair with RBVs began. He never did anything with it other than fit it with some aggressive Big O A/T tires and take it on some easy to moderate trials to go shooting. Sold it many years later for a Tribute.

No plans for an exo right now but if I get into heavy wheelin after the SAS I will yes at least consider it.

Well done- on both builds!

My dad bought a 1994 B4000 brand new in Green Bay, WI. It was the vehicle I learned to drive a clutch in. It is possibly the reason my love affair with RBVs began. He never did anything with it other than fit it with some aggressive Big O A/T tires and take it on some easy to moderate trials to go shooting. Sold it many years later for a Tribute.

Yeah it was and still is a great truck! Definately hooked me on the RBV platformas as well!

Been running good! Just been fixing the quirks lately. Vinyl floor finally showed up so I'll be putting that in this weekend. Also, I bought everything I need to change it over to the 2006+ front end too!




..You know... you could do a write up over here too..;)

..I think that would work in a new thread..:D

Major update. Got my 44 built and under the truck this weekend. Enjoy :


Cancer out:





Checking clearances:



New cross member:


Dutchman shafts :


Parts Mike re-drilled my rotors:


Many late nights:









Baby flex


Not even the same truck anymore!

06 front end is a very nice subtle touch. Truck looks great man!

Some updates:

First wave of pictures, ones I took. My friend who was with me has more, will put them up when I get them









I lucked out. My front driveshaft doesnt have to be modified! I still have to check it at full droop on drivers side but seems to work perfect. Threw a new u-joint in and some new straps and tested 4wd today (so $23 bucks instead of $400) :


Also cut and welded in some c-channel to the tranny cross member to make room for the double carden. Seems strong enough but Im thinking I will weld some plate on the bottom and or gusset for strength.


Since 4wd was working I went for a flex test and I am amazed! I also found what I need to address next in terms of getting this pig wheelable:







Need limiting straps, the shocks are about out of extention and the coils come un-seated.

Brake lines are plenty long but I need to run them behind the coil not in front of. With a spring to keep tension on them.

Fenders. Tires want to eat the fenders at anything other than dead straight ahead. Thinking I will either shave and plate the very corner or switch to non flare fenders and trim trim trim, weld, grind smooth and cover with Monsta-Liner. Maybe rock no fenders at all if I get the urge to go wheeling before I can do all of that.

And the Aussie works very well. Noisier than my D35 Lock-right but it actually un-locks and I can steer when Im not on the throttle.

Steering is very livable with the Aussie, and my box/pump actually seem less strained than when they were hooked to the TTB centerlink stuff.

And lastly, bumpstops. Everything clears fine but I need insurance that if Im going fast or come off a ledge abruptly that I dont KO my shocks or let coils do something beyond design. Iv'e seen on Broncos they weld a leaf spring perch that has been cut in half, to the back side of the James Duff arms, then have a polyurethane or hydraulic bumpstop mounted to the frame just above that.

I would like hydraulic stops but probably gonna settle for poly ones once I come up with a way to mount them.

The more I drive it, the more I am satisfied with the ride quality; the "soft" 170/60 valved Bilsteins are a perfect match IMHO to the super flexy BC Bronco front coils. They ride great yet do not allow excessive body roll, in fact it is less than with my TTB setup even though it is taller and more top heavy, it handles better.

Could benefit from a steering stabilizer, but that is a low priority item that will get taken care of in time.

Rear needs longer u-bolts so I can put the stock 2.5" block back in, instead of the 1.5" block. Still will sit about 1/4" to 3/8" low in the back but hey, this is CA and a little bro lean never hurt nobody :) Also low priority (but Ruffstuff is right around the corner, hmmmm)

As far as the tires, I am impressed with how quiet the Kevlars are at all speeds. Two did not balance easily however and I suspect a 3rd might be still out of balance too. They seem very rigid and stiff even at 35 psi. Might let a couple pounds out cuz they ride pretty jarring. The 4.88's turn them pretty well too. Obviously no race care but has plenty of drivability for the road and seems to have enough gear for offroading. Mileage has plummeted to the 14's from the high 17's but that was to be expected.

Trying to swing some rock sliders so I can get a wheeling trip in before winter, but its gonna be a stretch b/c this is my second to last semester as a mechanical engineer (18 units) and I've taken on a new job with more hours and more responsibility.

Castor seems to be right on. The arms have 4.5 degrees and I am running 7 degree bushings. so 11.5 total but what that actually translates to with the lift I am not sure. I just know it has excellent return to center and tracks equally well and slow and high speeds. No wandering or veering here. On the highway it drives surprising straight and needs very little input to keep it that way. Much better than the TTB steering was...

All in all I am very satisfied with the swap. Now I need to focus on saving up for the misc items to get it wheelable, and for another commuter (I'm getting close, probably less than 6 months and I'll have something to commute in). This girl is getting tired with 250,000+ miles. She runs fine but I've built some savings in case worst comes to worst. That's partly why this swap took 18 month (and the roll over lol).

I hope to have the hood painted, sliders on, winch plate/cradle for a winch and lights (tube later) and the misc little things done by years end. We will see how it plays out. Right now it drives me to work and school and does that just perfect. Ill get to the little things all in good time :)

Anybody remember when I was building the 31 spline 8.8 and I used RuffStuff leaf spring perches? And I cut one end of them off? I found a use for that end I cut off.....perfect for bumpstop strike pads!




Also, catch a glimpse of my new commuter in the background...

I blew the whole wad I made on the tires, got FOA bumpstops and 4xinnovation Tacoma sliders on the way (will weld to my old frame mounts). Hopefully this crap gets here and I have time to put it on before my trip on October 4-5



Got sliders and had WFO make me a bumper:










I dig your new bumper. They did a great job with all the plating. What size bc coils did you use? I used their 7.5" on my exploder and was very happy with the ride and flexibility but I was a little taller than I want to be in my ranger so I am thinking maybe 5.5?