Contact Email List
FAQ  •  Register  •  Login

Sj80 new toy, new member

Moderators: lay80n, sierrajim



Posts: 2

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:27 pm

Post Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:48 pm

Sj80 new toy, new member

Hi all, I'm Chris and I bought myself a Sierra SJ80 a couple of days ago. I'm new to Sierras, and 4 wheel driving for that matter, but i hope to get off road soon and learn the ropes.

I'm thinking that maybe i rushed into buying my car, as having read a little on forums the last couple of nights, the "coily's" aren't as good as the "leafy's" apparently. I'm not too fussed as I wont be doing any extreme 4wd and being my first 4wd I dont think its a bad car to start with.

I think its stock except for the tyres and maybe the rims (different offset from front to rear). It does have the death wobble I've read about and the swivel hub seals are gone but I'll be replacing them and the king pin bearings as soon as the kit arrives.

The owners manual says sj413 but the id plate under the bonnet says sj80. Are these the wide track? And does anyone know of a workshop manual specific to this model?

Look forward to learning as much as i can from the forum and getting off the beaten track. Cheers.


User avatar

Posts: 977

Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2003 7:57 pm

Location: Brisbane

Post Sun Jun 23, 2013 9:02 pm

Re: Sj80 new toy, new member

Hi Chris,

The SJ80 is known for being a little harder to modify, and there are some coily specific issues that occur, but nothing so bad as to make them a dud 4wd.

Before you do too much work to it, check out the radius arm mounts and panhard brackets on the diff housings. These are known to fatigue over time, and damage is exaggerated by the fitment of poly bushes to the radius arms.
Another thing to check is the upper strut towers on the front end. The tops of the towers can crack, allowing the strut shaft to punch through. This is easily fixed by welding some thick washers to the top, preferably BEFORE they break out.

The front diff is a high pinion, which is stronger than the low pinion leafy diff, but unfortunately there are no lockers available for the front end.... only rear.

The diffs are wider than a WT sierra, which means that you cannot buy off-the-shelf axle/CV upgrades for them. Having said that, the stock CV's should be quite reliable on 30's.

Gearing the standard SJ80 transfer is also a no-go, but you can bolt a WT transfer straight in. This opens you up to ALL aftermarket sierra transfer gear options. You will need the WT sierra jack shaft and front drive shaft to complete this mod.

All things considered, if you don't have any crazy plans for it, the coily should be quite easy to live with.



Posts: 2

Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:27 pm

Post Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:24 am

Re: Sj80 new toy, new member

Hi, thanks for the info, much appreciated.

I've done quite a bit to the car in the week or so that I've owned ita nd learning fast. Just can wait to get it offroad.

Thankfully the death wobble has gone and it drives pretty nice on the road. I replaced the king pins and the knuckle seals without too much trouble, just lots of head scratching and staring. Had to make up a tool fornthe hub nuts too but at least it'll be a quicker job next time.

The most frustrating job was getting the wipers working. Ended up taking out the whole dash but it I fixed up some dodgy wiring from the previous owner and cleaned out the heater setup while i was under there.

Waiting on a switch now for the 4wd light on the dash from the transfer case.

Found the right rear bushes on the diff to radius rods are cracked so need to find some replacements. Are these available from suzuki? Also, would these damaged bushes be the cause of the right side of the car sitting a little higher than the left?

The shockers look like the originals and dont leak but I'll be replacing them too hopefully soon. I dont need to raise the car so standard size shocks will do but it seems there aren't any options for a better quality standard height shock for the sj80?

I'm not sure on what you meant about the front shock upper mount ripping through. The tops of my shocks are visible from the holes in the wheel arch under the bonnet. The upper mount for them is a pretty strong looking bracket welded to the chassis rails, is this what breaks? I'll have to have a look at another car sometime to see if its the same.

I'll try get a few pics uploaded tomorrow.



Posts: 164

Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 5:11 am

Location: nz

Post Tue Jul 02, 2013 4:21 pm

Re: Sj80 new toy, new member

Yes the top of that bracket on the chassis is what craps itself.
Grow some balls.

That is all.

RB zook

User avatar

Posts: 3187

Joined: Sat Dec 06, 2003 6:47 pm

Location: Sydney, or @ newy on weekends

Post Thu Oct 15, 2015 6:51 pm

Re: Sj80 new toy, new member

The front diff is a high pinion, which is stronger than the low pinion leafy diff, but unfortunately there are no lockers available for the front end.... only rear.

I know a few people with airlocke sj80 fronts. They use a modified Jimny airlocker and don't know that the hi pinion front is stronger than leafy
TOYZUKI 96 coily zook,lux diffs, 3 inch suspension lift,3 inch body lift, 33'sMTRS,series 4 hopper,power steer,twin air lockers,4 LINK front and rear,2 inch spacers(GOT WIDTH)

Return to Suzuki

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by ST Software.
eBay Sniper
Time : 0.091s | 15 Queries | GZIP : Off | Load : 0.03