maximizing 22R performance

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  1. #1
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    maximizing 22R performance

    I need more juice! My carbed 22R is not cutting it, I don't think it's worth replacing the engine with a 22RE because all of the running gear and everything is nearing 30 years old and is in kind of rough condition. Project truck for me but I don't know if I will keep it long. Replacing shocks and springs soon, but...I need a power boost for sure, Is there a header I can buy for less than $300 out there? (not talking exhaust, I have Heddman hedders)
    '82 Toyota shortbox

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  3. #2
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Best thing for power would be to change the cam. www.engnbldr.com has a couple different grinds for very reasonable prices. Probably won't be able to find a good header for $300.....the good ones (Thorley, LCE) start at those prices, and thats U.S. dollars. You could swap out the carb. for a higher performance Weber or something, but if you're just using the truck for wheeling, stick w/ the good 'ol Aisin.

    IMO, to be able to make any real significant power changes, you may as well do a complete engine build. Then again..that costs $$$$!

    That being said, remember, this is a 22R we're talking about....definately not a high performance engine to begin with in the first place!
    She ain't pretty, but at least I USE my SUV!

    1990 4Runner- "Rusty... but trusty"

  4. #3
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    I heard replacing the 22R head with a 20R head is done to increase performance? is this true? how does that work? compression?
    '82 Toyota shortbox

  5. #4
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Well, I have a 22R and this is what i have done. Bored cylinders, Thorley Header and a 2barrel Weber Carb. You really want juice, try a turbocharger, however you're gonna have that boost when you go wheelin.

  6. #5
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    22R performance upgrades can be pretty much summed up in one word: pointless.
    the 22R is a great, reliable engine, but as prety much everyone finds it wasnt designed to spin 35" pieces of rubber.
    as far as upgreades go, anything that only adds a few hp's is trivial IMO.
    as soon as you do any serious modification that results in decent power gains, your reliability and durability will go down the toilet, at a price of which you could have swapped in a different engine that produces more power to begin with.
    my $.02

  7. #6
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    22r's work good with a thorley header. I run 38.5" sx's on my ftoy with no complaints running 4.10 diff gears. I have dual cases so I just leave the first case in low alot of the time.

    Thorley header is a good one. I'd also recomend the dual case setup.

  8. #7
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Oh man, I wanna just swap in a 5M-GE so bad, if only I could find one, and for a reasonable price. The fuel mileage already isn't so great for a 4-banger 4x4 anyway though...
    '82 Toyota shortbox

  9. #8
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    I would advise using the 7M-GE, as it's a better designed top end. Not knocking the 5M-GE, I had one with 406K on it, but the 7M-GE is better.

    The best upgrade I've found for the 22R is a hotter cam. A header... not so much unless you're turning lots of rpm's. The 20R head on a 22R isn't bad, but the marginal power increase won't justify the cost. Also, you'll need to change to a different carb or even complete intake replacement ($$$), as the 20R carb is like trying to breathe through a plastic coffee stir stick.
    90 Toyota Ext cab sas
    1990 W250 HD 4x4 CTD

  10. #9

    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    the best toyota motor is the 2JZ. The 7mge is old technology

    If you are going to do a carburetor on the 22R, then I can supply Weber carbs. You can put the 20R head on the 22R, but I do not know the procedure. I know a lot of people have that. Call me at 604 879 6288

  11. #10
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Quote Originally Posted by bigjim5551212 View Post
    the best toyota motor is the 2JZ. The 7mge is old technology

    If you are going to do a carburetor on the 22R, then I can supply Weber carbs. You can put the 20R head on the 22R, but I do not know the procedure. I know a lot of people have that. Call me at 604 879 6288
    Purely subjective. Might I suggest that you advertise in the vendor's section unless, you want to get flamed?
    7MGE may be "old skool", but they have their place, and one of those places is under the hood of Toyota trucks.

    May??? Hokey thread revival, Batman.
    90 Toyota Ext cab sas
    1990 W250 HD 4x4 CTD

  12. #11
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    If you don't wanna keep it long why bother, save your money for your next build or keep it and go all out on this one. Save your self some money in the long run
    81 Toyota!

  13. #12
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy View Post
    22R performance upgrades can be pretty much summed up in one word: pointless.
    the 22R is a great, reliable engine, but as prety much everyone finds it wasnt designed to spin 35" pieces of rubber.
    as far as upgreades go, anything that only adds a few hp's is trivial IMO.
    as soon as you do any serious modification that results in decent power gains, your reliability and durability will go down the toilet, at a price of which you could have swapped in a different engine that produces more power to begin with.
    my $.02


    I agree that upgrading the cam is the only way to get more power out of the 4cyl engines, but I'm with jeremy that it's just a waste of time. For the money and effort, you can swap out the engine for something kick ass. A friend of mine spent the scratch to upgrade a bunch of stuff on his 4cyl, and he noticed such a slight increase in power he regrets ever bothering.

    One thing I will suggest, even thought it's obvious, is to make sure your engine is running properly in the first place. Have you done *all* the regular maintenance procedures? I was floored by how much power I got by simply replacing my distributer cap & rotor, plugs, oil, air filter, and adjusting my valves to spec. There's still more to do, but just that made my truck purr.

    Another thing is gearing. Are you running 35" tires on 4.10's? If so, your problem isn't your engine, it's the gearing ratios.
    Rusty 87 runner on 33's

  14. #13
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    Re: maximizing 22R performance

    Well, i've done what most people have done.

    Thorley Header
    Bored Cylinders , polished etc..
    2 Barrel Side draft weber carb... (hate it)

    What i would recommend doing is converting it to EFI.

    Why? More power, better fuel economy, no hesitation when you put the skinny pedal down. going up hills, you won't have a lack in fuel.

    It's what i want to do. I love the 22R. Good strong reliable engine and it's a damn work horse. Camper and fully loaded trailer good ol' 22R pulled that nice load with 31" tires from Delta to Rock Creek. Also pulled a fully loaded truck and trailer to Dawson and came back with even more weight. 2 mooses and a 3 point buck.

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