Griffin the 1999 T4R Build


I thought I would add another piece of information related to my spare tire comment. I wanted to mount one of my old matching 255/85R16 tires as a spare tire to match diameters with my new 255/80R17s. Consensus on the internet seems to be that a tire that size wouldn't fit in the spare tire area with a reciever hitch without major mods, but upon hoisting it up I realized that it was actually quite close to fitting. This is probably because I have the factory Toyota three piece bolt together style hitch (note that most of the third gen factory hitches are not this style). Mine is also inverted, unsure if that affects fitment but I love the rear ground clearance. After careful removal of what I deemed to be excess tube sticking out towards the spare tire that existed on my receiver (note I stopped short and did not affect any welds or structural items on my reciever, copy at your own risk and do not weaken the receiver hitch whatever you do), I was about to successfully mount a 1/2 tread Cooper Discoverer S/T 255/85R16 in the factory spare tire location. Note when I reassembled my three piece receiver I also "pulled" the center back to get the bolts to the furthest edges of the holes for another 1/4" or so. I didn't do that between the hitch and frame, possibly a bit left on the table there.

When mounted up, the spare fits neatly up against the rear hitch, with the front top tread up against the crossmember nearest the axle. This affords a health 1/2" or so of clearance between the spare tire and the J bar, and since it is hitting the crossmember in the front, no way it could shift forward. I didn't even have to let out any air, which was my next plan. Needless to say, I am happy to have a full size spare without having to resort to an aftermarket mount, carrier, or deal with it in the cargo area.