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Thread: FJ40 Project

  1. #1
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    Default FJ40 Project



    Iíve been tossing around the idea of picking up an FJ40 project for a couple of years now. With the kids getting older, I wanted to find a vehicle that was simple enough that they could learn basic mechanics on. Iíve looked at quite a few FJ40s, but it wasnít until a few weeks ago that I found the right one.

    Itís a 1972 FJ40 with a very low mileage Chevy 350 crate motor backed up by a Toyota 3spd tranny. The Cruiser came with some extra goodies like a brand new Aussie locker, (2) Toyota 4spd transmissions with an extra Toyota 4spd to Chevy 350 bell housing adapter, and an auxiliary fuel tank.

    The plan is to do a frame off restore so that everything is mechanically and structurally sound. While I won't be restoring everything to original specs, it will still be a classic Cruiser when I'm done.
         

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Looks like a fun project.
    ___________
    Jeeping:

    The art of getting dirty and going broke while slowly heading nowhere and taking all day to do it...

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Awesome Brad! I still regret giving away the one I had. May get another someday.

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Congrats on finding one you like Brad!
    ___________
    Chris in Florida

  5. #5
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    I've done a little work on it already, let me bring you up to speed....

    The overall rust condition is pretty good, I've certainly seen worse. The frame is solid and the tub is pretty good too. As with most Cruisers, the rear sill and quarter panels need some attention. I shopped around for a replacement rear sill but couldn't see paying $300 for one. I opted to make my own for less than $10.

    1. Old Rear Sill
    2. Jake (oldest son) cutting it out
    3. Sill out
    4. New sill
    5. New sill installed
             

  6. #6
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    I ended up buying a new pair of rear quarter panels from Cool Cruiser of Texas. The metal got worked pretty good during shipping and will need to be reshaped a bit. In preparation for cutting out and installing the news panels, I started stripping down the interior.

    When one of the previous owners installed the roll bar, they laid a piece of carpet between the roll bar mounts and the top of the rear wheel wells, this obviously trapped mositure and led to some hidden rust. I should be able to just patch in a few new panels and it'll be good as new.

    A couple pics of the beast shedding some weight.
          

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Nice to see you son involved Brad and thanks for the pics!
    ___________
    Chris in Florida

  8. #8
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Chris previously posted:
    "Nice to see you son involved Brad and thanks for the pics!"

    Yeah, my oldest son is pretty pumped about it. He'd be out there everyday if possbile. He can get his permit in one year, the goal is to have the project completed by then.

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Nice project. I'm sure you and your kids will enjoy it. Nice work on the rear sill.

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    sweet project and even more sweet that you get that time to pass on knowledge to your kids!
    ___________
    We do not remember days, we remember moments.

    Cesare Pavese

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Dirt Claude previously posted:
    "As with most Cruisers, the rear sill and quarter panels need some attention. I shopped around for a replacement rear sill but couldn't see paying $300 for one. I opted to make my own for less than $10."

    Well done, Brad. Maybe you could whip me up one of those homemade rear sills one of these days.

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Nice Brad, I like it. Good to see your boys learning the stuff too. Sooo, I am guessing you could probably use your tranny jack back again at some point?

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Great project and glad the kids are enjoying it!

  14. #14
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Thanks everyone, it should be a fun project. I'm very grateful that my dad took the time when I was younger to show me the ropes. My dad, brother, and I rebuilt a mid 70's VW Bug back in the day. Maybe that's what got my hooked on cars? Anyways, I hope to be able to pass some of the knowledge on to my kids as well.

    scout man previously posted:
    " Sooo, I am guessing you could probably use your tranny jack back again at some point?"

    LOL...yeah, I thought about getting my tranny jack from you someday.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Rob previously posted:
    "Well done, Brad. Maybe you could whip me up one of those homemade rear sills one of these days. "

    I think we could do that, it was pretty easy actually.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Great Cruiser!!! I had an fj60 for a while and the only bad part was the 2f- v8 mileage with 4 cyl. power. A 350 is perfect!

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    [QUOTE=scout man;212647]Nice Brad, I like it. Good to see your boys learning the stuff too.

    Brad,

    It is great that you are getting your kids involved, showing them a trade/skills, and getting them out of the house away from the xbox. That is how I got started, me and my dad built a 70 mustang when I was a kid.

    Levi

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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    just let me know when you would like it Brad, I am hit or miss these days on when I am in town, but I do drive by your office fairly regularly. Wife also works real close to you.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    So.... I obviously need to get better at updating this thread. Between work, family, and kid's activities we've still managed to squeeze in a few hours each week to work on the Cruiser.

    Instead of just patching in new metal in the rusted areas of the wheel wells, I opted to replace the entire top piece of the wheel well. I built a tool to shape the flat metal into corrugated metal, like the original pieces, but I opted to keep the metal flat. The reason behind this was to make it easier to install the rollcage and jump seats later down the road. I ended up using thicker sheet metal instead and will also use braces to tie the rollcage directly into the frame.

    Since I was replacing the wheel wells, I figured it wouldn't be that much more work the replace the rear portion of the bed. While it wasn't rusted out, it was pretty wavy and dented up from years of abuse.

    1. Tops of the rear wheel wells and bed removed
    2. New wheel well
    3. Wheel well installed
    4. Wheel wells and bed installed
            

  20. #20
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    Default Re: FJ40 Project



    Wow, nice work! You have a lot more patience for that than I do!

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