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Best gift ever? Yep. (an '84 FJ-60 for us)

Discussion in '60-Series Wagons' started by DanS HJ-45, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    OK, so there is a little story here....

    A few months ago, my sister's V6 pickup had a blown HG, and insisted that I fix it (instead of taking it to the dealer like I suggested because of my schedule). But, because I am the world's best brother, I went ahead and got to work fixing her pickup. In the meantime, she borrowed a friend's spare vehicle to get to and from work.

    Somewhere along those lines, my brother (MT Economist) saw a 60 for sale in Missoula, MT (http://forum.ih8mud.com/vehicles-trailers-sale-wanted/405116-1984-fj60-1500-missoula-mt.html), and called to see if I needed a 60. In the meantime, our sister's friend got into an accident with his primary vehicle and needed his car back, and I figured it would be a while before she could drive her pickup again, so she decided to buy this 60 from Missoula.

    Of course, she needed to get it back to Colorado, so I flew up (I have travel privileges on most airlines), picked it up and drove it first to Helena. Mostly because then I could use my brother's driveway and tools if it needed anything, and because I could stop by 3_puppies' place if I needed parts (I always need parts).

    So, it drove uneventfully from Missoula to Helena, with the backfiring (more like "chuffs" out of the exhaust than pops or bangs) consistent but not a huge problem. Fine power, but with 33's and the 3.7 gears 1st gear was definitely not a happy place.

    Once there, I monkeyed with the timing, replaced vacuum lines and did anything I could think of that might help with the backfiring. None of it worked, really, but in the morning I headed over to 3_puppies' place and we tinkered a bit more. We tried to adjust the carb per the FSM, which didn't seem to make a lot of difference, but definitely helped a bit and made it run smoother. Just in case, he had another carb that had come from a running truck, so I bought it, a windshield washer bottle, a radiator overflow bottle, and some bits for my 45 and hit the road. I figured that if worse came to worse I could swap carbs on the side of the road if I had to.

    Long story short, the truck drove back to CO really well actually. I stopped and played with timing and the carb a few times on the side of the road, but by the time I got to DEN I had it getting 14.6MPG at 65mph! Which I know is great for a 60, but I'm used to my diesel and roughly twice that. So, roughly a thousand miles is what I put on it getting it down to CO for my sister, and she had some plans to do little bits here and there, but of course only once her truck was back to running (which I am happy to report it is, and running better than ever).

    But there's a catch.... turns out it wasn't really for her. Apparently the family conspired to buy it and hang onto it anticipating that I would get married and thinking that it would be the kind of gift that wouldn't revolt either me or Kate. And they were right, Kate and I got married unannounced at the County Register, surprising nobody, really. Imagine our surprise though when we were given the 60 as a wedding gift!

    There's a bit more, but I'll get some pics going now...
    60 2.jpg

    60 1.jpg

    60 3.jpg
  2. klinetime574

    klinetime574 Addicted SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,185
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Good story!

    Nice Cruiser!

    Whats up with the front end? Silver hood and silver fender? I can't really tell haha
  3. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    So, the good, bad and ugly of it....


    • Obviously, it drove just fine, other than that pesky backfire.
    • It has an OME 3" suspension under it, which looks to be relatively new.
    • 33x12.50R15 tires of some knobby variety. Noisy, inefficient, and kind of scary on ice.
    • It has a DUI distributor.
    • The A/C is missing the evaporator in front of the radiator (or is that the condensor?)
    • The TREs should probably be replaced.
    • There isn't a lot of rust at all. The body has some bubbling, the frame has some minor scaling, and the front doors have real rot.
    • It has been repainted.
    • The right front fender is in primer.
    • The seats are torn.
    • The dash is cut a bit where they all are.
    • The front axle needs a knuckle job.
    • The P/S pump makes a LOT of noise when it's cold, you can "feel the noise" in the wheel when I start it at 20 degrees.

    60 4.jpg


    60 5.jpg


    60 6.jpg

    Overall, I think it was a steal at $1200, and even more of a gift for us.:hillbilly: We have an uncle who just had to get in on the action, and who gave us money to buy a set of tires, so there are 4 33x10.50R15 BFG AT K/Os ordered now.

    I also had a new exhaust put on it. Amazingly, the new exhaust completely got rid of the backfiring. So I guess that spare carb is just a spare now.
  4. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    Before those tires get in (it'll be a few weeks) I ran to the junkyard (http://www.jimsgotparts.com/) and snagged 5 60 series wheels.

    I then had them blasted quickly because I wanted to get paint on before it got too cold here. It worked, because I painted them in 75 degree weather. The next day was the first day it froze in Denver this year.

    60 wheels.jpg

    I then gave them two coats of self etching primer, followed up by Graphite wheel paint.
    60 wheels 2.jpg

    We really don't know what we are going to do with the 60. Frankly, my wife and I don't need another vehicle (we have three here, my 45 is in NM and needs work, and she has an '85 4-runner for an airport car at her base in California). We very well may sell the 60, because we're concentrating on buying land and building a house at the moment, but either way we're planning on cleaning it up and making it something that we'd be happy to keep.

    That means that it will get:
    • Obviously the new tires.
    • Front axle rebuild.
    • Hopefully 4.11 gears if I can find them cheap enough.
    • Repainted (and rust repaired)
    • New front doors (probably with the repaint, and I may try to use 62 doors because power windows would be pretty nice for us).
    • A front bumper (either stock or *something*).
    • New interior panels. I'll probably go with the ABS panels, because they aren't too expensive, and I like the way they look, and how well they deal with dirt.

    That's it for now, I'm kind of busy in general (trying to finish the rather extensive 40 build, and then I've got my 45, which has a 1HZ/Turbo/H55f ready to go into it), and somewhere along the lines the 60 will get some attention. If we were to keep it long term, it would NEED a 1HZ. 14MPG is good for a 60, but no good for us.

    Dan
  5. ksollinger

    ksollinger

    Messages:
    203
    Location:
    Roswell GA
    Nice find and congragulations!
  6. It has potential.
  7. american psycho

    american psycho

    Messages:
    780
    Location:
    switzerland
    put a 1HZ in it with turbo quick before you get kids! nice score
  8. beno

    beno 33030-60450 Moderator Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    12,600
    Location:
    Covington, GA
    Dan--


    Bring her to ABQ, let's bring my rig up to your shop and have a heavy 60 series wrenching session.

    I think we should both get those rear bumper kits and take care of those up at your place too.

    Let me know when.

    :)
  9. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    I agree. Sounds like the best dude-date EVER. I'll order a bumper probably two months after I order that input shaft (hopefully next month).

    I've even been thinking about how to extend some wings around the rear quarters with those.... And I'll bet that with two of them right there, that we could knock two bumpers out with the quickness!

    Dan
  10. Tinker

    Tinker

    Messages:
    2,847
    Location:
    Larkspur, CO
    Yo Dan -
    You ever install the 45 axles you got from me 3 years ago? I'm still sitting on all the parts for the axle/brake/suspension upgrade to my '84 60. Finally made room for the project at home (closed the shop 1-1/2 years ago). Maybe I'll get to it before the heavy spring snows so I can plow my own driveway.
    Steve
  11. GarageRat

    GarageRat

    Messages:
    668
    Location:
    Colorado
    Jims the man for Toyota parts in Denver. Another that deals exclusively with cruisers is Coyote John at Coyote Cruisers in Fort Collins, he always has a ton of cruisers and decent prices. Had a '45 shorty that I was dying over last time I went.

  12. 3_puppies

    3_puppies SILVER Star

    Messages:
    6,973
    Location:
    Helena MT
    I was wondering when this was going to appear. I can't remember when you were here, it was awhile ago.

    congrats on the marriage!
  13. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    The rear axle is rebuilt (actually was not too long after I picked it up from you), just waiting on the real work on the truck to begin... (there's pictures int he 45 thread). The front axle donated a drum to it (one of them was cracked--probably dropped at some point), but I will convert it to a disc brake setup with that later model 40 series axle housing.

    Yeah, pretty happy about the marriage bit. The cruiser is just a bonus. I think it was late August or so when I was up there picking it up. It certainly was well before the frost either up here or that far north, that's for sure!

    Dan
  14. Tofudebeest

    Tofudebeest

    Messages:
    2,841
    How's the belly and rear C-channel section of frame? I agree, lots of potential. I see new doors, new ProCars (though the passenger seat looks lickable) and a respray.
  15. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    Belly has light scale, but nothing too bad.

    The C channel itself is solid, but there is definite rot in the little reinforcing strips that are inside the C channel (not sure what that is called). Pretty sure I'll just cut those off, and then box that section to fix it.

    As to the seats, I'm thinking of the PT-cruiser seats that I would recover (along with the rear seat). Mostly because I would like the arm rest, and heated seats might be nice for my :princess:. And if I decide to sell it then I imagine they wouldn't hurt. But, we may just recover and replace the foam in these, and add seat heaters or something. Depends on what I find a good deal on...

    Dan
  16. GLTHFJ60

    GLTHFJ60 Rum Runnin' SILVER Star

    Messages:
    13,239
    Location:
    Durham, NC
    Truck looks great!

    All front doors seem to rot there. Shouldn't be a big deal to find a used set down there.

    Also, congrats on getting married!!!
  17. Combat Chuck

    Combat Chuck

    Messages:
    2,936
    Location:
    Freensville
    so, how long until you find another 1HZ and do a swap?
  18. DanS HJ-45

    DanS HJ-45 SILVER Star

    Messages:
    4,064
    Location:
    Idaho Springs, CO
    Yeah, I've already located three sets of good doors, but I think that if I'm going to all the trouble, that 62 doors would be nice, just for the power windows. I don't really care about power locks so much, but it's just a pain to reach across the truck and roll down the passenger side window.

    But really, if I find some cheap enough I'll do it, and if not it'll keep the 60 doors whenever it gets painted. (and who knows how long that may be).

    Well, first I need to get the 45 running. And the 1HZ I got for it was kind of a fluke, I don't know if I could normally afford to buy a 1HZ, so it may be a LONG time for this one. To top that, the wife and I are seriously on the saving money tip to buy land and build a house (likely without financing a dime), so cash to spare for another 1HZ will be darned hard to come by for a few years....

    Realistically: if I keep it, it'll get a 1HZ in 5-ish years. Which is why I figure that cleaning it up and doing things to it that I would normally do are probably an OK investment if we decide to sell it. And if we end up keeping it--then that stuff will already be done! I'm not going to lie though: I have thought about selling the faux-lux once the 45 is done, but that's a tough one for me to think about (it is the first car I bought, and it's been with me for a long time and a lot of miles). But, with a HZJ-45 pickup, I'm just not sure if a mini truck makes enough sense--especially since that would easily pay for a 1HZ/Turbo/H55f combination (and some). Who knows, we've got a lot of saving to do before I have to really worry about doing anything, so that's sort of a plus...

    Dan
  19. Combat Chuck

    Combat Chuck

    Messages:
    2,936
    Location:
    Freensville
    Good luck with the house, I think it's pretty cool you two are trying to do it on your own!

    For what it's worth, I think the trusty old 2F's one of the best gasser motors ever made, it's balanced between power and torque, and open to all manner of mods, alla RodDoc's 2FE build.


    That is a really sweet Cruiser, I couldn't imagine a better wedding gift.
  20. KXP7

    KXP7

    Messages:
    96
    Location:
    new mexico
    land

    are you going to build in new mexico i have acre and a half in los lunas south of alb close to river private drive irrigated let me know

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