Project Toyota Tundra Part 9- Installing TRD’s big brakes with Volk Wheels
By Mike Kojima
When we last left off we had just gotten our TRD big brake set and were anticipating installing them on our Project Tundra Supertruck. However our brakes were so big we could not fit them under our forged 17″ TRD wheels. It was not even close. Checking with TRD we found that the smallest diameter wheel we could use was a large 20″ in diameter wheel.
We are not in love with the Dub look nor are we Raider fans, so we set off in search of a wheel combo that would look proper on our off road 4X4, fit our big brake kit and not weigh so much it would nullify the advantages of big brakes or a supercharged engine!
The journey proved to be somewhat long and somewhat difficult but in the end, we got the look we wanted and our big brakes.
|Our big brakes are going to be great to stop our big, heavy and powerful truck, especially when towing. Most of the cars in the MotoIQ garage have excellent brakes so even though our Tundra had pretty good brakes for a truck, we were used to more. With huge 406mm in diameter rotors, we had to run at least a 20″ in diameter wheel. We were not too keen on this because we really dislike the Dub look on off road oriented trucks and we wanted to keep the proportions esthetically pleasing.
|Since we had to compromise in getting larger wheels, we decided to go all out in our wheel selection by opting for super trick and expensive Volk TE37X off road racing wheels. We custom ordered our wheels from Japan as Mackin Industries only stocks the TE37X in 18″ and 22″ sizes. Unfortunately it took six months for our wheels to arrive. If you think this combo looks good, give Eddie Lee at Mackin a call and if enough of you do, he will probably consider stocking them. 20″ is sort of a no mans land size wheel in the truck world. Most off road look guys want 18″ wheels and Dub lovers and street truck fans want 22″.
|The TE37X is perhaps the trickest and most expensive truck wheel on the market. It is forged using Volks multistage dies to get the forging very close to net shape with no machining. By forge forming the entire wheel, you get superior grain formation around the entire geometry of the wheel. This is impossible to get in a wheel simply machined from a forged blank. This technology enables the TE37X to be Paris to Dakar proven off road strong while only weighing 24.3 lbs for our huge 20×9.5 wheel! The TE37X probably weighs half as much as some off road wheels of the same size.
|We think our TE37X wheels are beautiful and the bronze anodized finish will go well with our trucks white color. Most truck dudes will never know about why we want to keep rotating inertial mass down and why we would pay so much to do it. Our wheels came in a zero offset, not exactly what we wanted as we knew they were going to stick out of the wheel wells off road style, this was sort of ok with us but we would have preferred something like a 30mm offset.
|For tires we chose the Nitto Terra Grappler in 305/55-20. We wanted a fairly beefy tire that would not look low profile silly on our off road 4×4 truck. According to Nitto the the we chose was only about 1.2″ wide and 0.7″ taller than our old 285/70-17 BFG stock tire. Wrong, Nittos run on the big side for their size and BFG must run on the small side. The Nittos were much taller and fatter than our stock tires. This created all sorts of headaches for us later even though our fitment looked really good. In hind site it would have been better to get the slightly shorter 305/50-20 Terra Grappler that Nitto also makes.