ROTW TiredironGRB

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by TiredIronGRB, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. TiredIronGRB

    TiredIronGRB

    Messages:
    1,284
    Location:
    Kingsport, TN
    1991 FJ80 with Volvo Portals
    Having been a military vehicle collector for over twenty years I’ve owned a wide range of vehicles from a World War Two tank to a Slantback Humvee, but the military vehicle that performed best off-road was the Volvo C304 6X6 which had portal axles but lacked in the "Creature Feature" area.
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    I’m also a big Land Cruiser fan having owned a couple FJ40s and a FJ55, so when I ran across a good deal on a "91 FJ80 I couldn't resist. My original intention was to make it a medium duty trail rig with the usual modifications (springs and shocks, lockers, tires, etc.). I drove the 80 for a couple of weeks and was amazed at the comfort and sturdy design, with it parked beside the Volvo 6X6 I began to notice how well the Volvo portal axles would fit underneath the 80.
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    Fujitsu tablet PC with Delorme TopoUSA with GPS.
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    ARB Bumper with MileMarker 12,500# winch.
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    Mounted the MileMarker upside down and used the upper fairlead mount.
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    I picked up a setup of Volvo C303 Portal Axles with the 5.99 gearing.
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    All the old brackets were removed and the stock FJ mounts were graphed on.
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    The Volvo axles have vacuum operated lockers so I also got the control valves from the donor vehicle.
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    I added a vacuum pump from an RV to backup the engine vacuum, it also acts as backup for the brake booster.
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    These adapters let me keep the stock driveshafts, the Volvo stumps were 1" shorter so the adapters fit perfectly.
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    The portals gave me 5" of lift but it was still a little close so I got a set of OME 2" Heavy springs and shocks from Slee.
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    I went with 38.5-11-16 TSL Boggers, anything wider would require custom wheels with less backspacing.
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    With the new springs it measures 44.5" to the center of the wheelwell.
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    There's about 2" of clearance at the tightest point.
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    17.5" of ground clearance.
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    Homemade sliders.
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    I have put about 3000 miles on it and it drives great and is very capable off road.
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2006
  2. NW-sickboy

    NW-sickboy

    Messages:
    697
    Location:
    Eagle, ID
    wheeling PICS!!!!!...... very cool build...
  3. TX_TLC

    TX_TLC

    Messages:
    1,408
    Location:
    Texas
    WOW :eek: That is awesome. Very nice truck.

    How are those drum brakes on stopping the Cruiser? Your 3000 mile test drive any on the highway? How has does it roll at 65? Braking from highway speeds?

    Edit...and I second...MORE WHEELING PICS!
  4. TiredIronGRB

    TiredIronGRB

    Messages:
    1,284
    Location:
    Kingsport, TN
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2006
  5. beno

    beno 33030-60450 Moderator Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    13,677
    Location:
    Covington, GA
    Nice air on that tree corner...you need some more pushers!!

    Beautifully throught-out rig.

    Congrats!:cheers:
    -onur
  6. reffug

    reffug

    Messages:
    3,993
    Location:
    'in dat der briar patch'
    Wow!!!!!

    Thats all I have to say about that.
  7. Arleaux

    Arleaux SILVER Star

    Messages:
    466
    Location:
    14 mins from the bus
    I want those axles !!!

    Very nice rig,
    Thanks
  8. watched your build up. great job i love your rig.
  9. Spydaz

    Spydaz

    Messages:
    387
    Location:
    Long Island, New York
    How would you say that Slant Back Mil Spec Hummer does against your LC???
    I almost sold the LC for a Mil Spec M998 with 27k miles but that 6.2 GM diesel stinks!! And the matinence is insane.
  10. TiredIronGRB

    TiredIronGRB

    Messages:
    1,284
    Location:
    Kingsport, TN
    I wouldn't trade my 80 for two of the Humvees if I had to keep them. I got it stuck in wet grass once...seriously:eek:
  11. nickw

    nickw

    Messages:
    1,368
    Location:
    Cranbrook BC
    Well, I am sure you have heard it before.
    But NICE!

    Portals and an 80. Sounds tasty.
    Put a 1HD-T into the mix and I would have to steal it from you. :)

    But seriously, good job.
    Thats one nice looking rig.

  12. AMMO

    AMMO

    Messages:
    1,272
    Location:
    Lincoln, CA
    Thanks for thinking outside the box! You have pushed the envelope just a bit further in what can be done, and how to do it correctly. One question, what would you consider the weak link now of the rig? No more Birfs, but what are the limits of the Volvo's?

    Nice rig!

    -Matt
  13. Biff

    Biff

    Messages:
    1,906
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Thats one sweet rig. A few questions

    Hows the engine performance with the new axles?

    Is it easy for you to regear if you ever need to?

    How are the vacuum operated lockers in comparison to the standard lockers we all know ie OEM or ARB?
  14. Nomis

    Nomis

    Messages:
    1,177
    Location:
    Tampa
    You've definately got some skills. Truck looks great! I also enjoyed perusing the WWII vehicle restoration on your website - also some nice work. Thanks for raising the bar in the 80's community.
  15. TiredIronGRB

    TiredIronGRB

    Messages:
    1,284
    Location:
    Kingsport, TN
    It still has birfs but they are pretty strong, I think the weak link would be the portal gears if you had more horsepower. Biggest limit is not wanting to tear it up.


    It performs better with the portals because when I got it had 33" BFG ATs and it was very slugish, final gearing now is a little lower than stock so it gives the 3FE a little more out of the hole.

    There's only three different ratios on the Volvo portal axles 6.00 (which I have), 7.10, and 7.56.

    The vacuum controls are great, with the 80 or the Volvo 6X6 I never had any problems. Vacuum tends to seal rather that seep. I never cared much for the ARB lockers because of the leaks after they have some age on them. All the vacuum parts are servicable from outside the axle housing.
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2006
  16. MaddBaggins

    MaddBaggins Remember the KnightRider!

    Messages:
    3,377
    Location:
    In the Middle of the Street
    Portals on the 80, that is cool! That's a good looking rig, nice job:cool:
  17. spressomon

    spressomon glutton

    Messages:
    11,256
    Location:
    Central Coast
    Good pics and great video...thanks for sharing!
  18. nyk438

    nyk438

    Messages:
    254
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Been waiting to see you on the ROTW for a while now. Love your rig, I want my 91' on portals.
  19. Just when I start thinking I am done with the mods.....

    Nice job bro!
  20. NorCalDoug

    NorCalDoug problems solved daily... SILVER Star

    Messages:
    6,128
    Location:
    uhhhh...duh...Northern CA
    That's a very nice and very clean build.
    :cheers:

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