Builds 1974 FJ40 Restoration Build Thread

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by JohnJL, Feb 2, 2018.

  1. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    Hi there, long time member (since 1999 but had to recently reactivate...) I've had this 1974 FJ40 since 1998, originally buying it off Ebay from the previous owner in Colorado. I lived in Connecticut at the time and then moved first to Sydney Australia and then to King City, Ontario. Its been registered and on adventures on three continents and never let me down. I actually learned to drive and my first car was a 1985 FJ60 in the same Strong Blue (ie Blueberry). I sold that when I was 24 and started racing, building and collecting aircooled 911s but never forgot what a gem this FJ40 is. We use it around the property to drag felled trees and boulders, and a neighbor just cut new paths in the tree farm behind us so that's motivation to get her in tip top shape!

    I stopped running her last summer when a fuel leak sprang out the front of the carb. You know the story, leaking carb turns into frame-off restoration...anyway I had uneven compression across the cylinders and to my knowledge the bottom end had never been apart.

    Its a January 1974 FJ40, with the "F" bottom end but to my knowledge 2F heads. When I first purchased the car I installed an EZ locker in the rear and that has worked well. I did some wiring fixes but as you can see in the images below the wiring was all hacked up. I am surprised it hadnt had a fire with the state of that wiring.

    My plan is to bring everything back to stock OEM where practical except where safety, reliability and subtle performance upgrades are practical. It should look stock with minor and un-doable minor mods.

    The list starts with...
    - Rebuild the F motor with Delta RV cam
    - Rebuilt heads and OEM Aisin carb
    - Blasted and coated stock manifolds, ceramic coated exhaust
    - New wiring harness with proper color-coated wiring to match OEM wiring diagrams but ATO fuses. Proper relays fpr headlights, winch
    - Roll bar is nice and in perfect condition, I am going to keep it. I left it in place to keep the tub from twisting while it goes for blasting and i fix up the rust spots.
    - It had powersteering when I bought it was advertised as "Saginaw" however I am not sure. I havent inspected the pump, but the steering column reads "Toyoda." Yes, with a d. It functioned perfectly so that will be a rebuild and paint.
    - Old Man Umu shocks and steering stabilizer are at least 25 years old and painted red. Replace.
    - Keeping SUA, flipping ubolts. OME or HFS springs 2"ish lift.
    - Fox shocks unless I can find something else that appeals.
    - Springs are fine but ugly with new, 2" lift. Shackes are new HFS.
    - PO had put a chev pancake air filter on. I have secured a good condition original from SOR. Blast and powder or paint.
    - Keeping original knuckles, axles and drum brakes but with all new cylinders, master cylinders, hard and soft lines, drums and pads.
    - Inspect transfer case and transmission. Was functioning perfectly but dirty.
    - R&R driveshafts
    - Rebuid and reupholseter the Supra seats.
    - New oil pump, fuel pump, alternator, senders, water pump, thermostat
    - R&R original raditor and fan
    - New hoses and lines on everything
    - REbuild and replate all the hardware in zinc/cad
    - Warn winch
    - New bumper and fairlead

    I have a decent shop at the house, with a Bendpak lift, blast cabinet, powdercoating oven, paint cabinet, zinc and copy-cad plating tubs, hydraulic presses, sheet metal bender, and I am dangerous with the MIG. THis will be the 5th thing I rebuild in this garage, in order I built that entire 1982 supercharged 911 race car in the background in those pics, back-to-factory 1971 911 Targa S, 1976 911 autocross car, and last winter a minibike ATV with my 6 year old son. He learned how to rebuild an aisin carb and lay fiberglass...

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    Last edited: Feb 4, 2018
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  2. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    more to come...

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  3. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    and more...

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  4. thebigredrocker

    thebigredrocker SILVER Star

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    My bet is, this is a project that gets completed. Very nice shop setup.:cheers:

    I had no clue where you were located until I saw the maple leaf on the jug. We ski in Canada every year. Beautiful country with great people in it.

    Are you going to media blast the tub?
     
  5. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    Hi,
    I am in King City, Ontario. I will blast the chassis/axles and frame but send the tub, top, doors, fenders and hood out for blasting. I would rather have someone else do the rust repair but I havent found anyone nearby yet. Dont say The Guild.
     
  6. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    These are the last few things I restored...I plan to out-do them with the FJ.

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  7. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    More

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    dodored, TractorDoc, top40 and 5 others like this.
  8. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    the targa

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  9. thebigredrocker

    thebigredrocker SILVER Star

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    Good call on blasting that crap off. I wire wheeled PO’s bedliner of my tub:confused:

    Wow! Dang nice work you do. Never even sat in a Porsche, they look pretty sweet though. I remember reading @whitey45 and @oregon fj mention they are Porsche guys.
     
  10. oregon fj

    oregon fj Rescuer of old vehicles...

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    My current plan is to have my tub and body parts dipped (base/acid) to remove all paint and rust. I have a dipping shop local to me, and it worked great on a prior project.

    And yes, my other recreation car is a Porsche. In fact both of my 2 prior projects were Porsches too. The keeper is an ‘84 3.2 Carrera.

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  11. Pighead

    Pighead Stop calling it an FJ

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    I'd suggest replacing the original 4 blade metal fan with the later plastic fan (7 or so blades). Those metal blades occasionally break off at speed and can go through the hood, or worse. I got mine from Mark's, bolt-on perfect fit.
     
  12. whitey45

    whitey45 SILVER Star

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    A53F9B8C-86E1-4183-8FBB-6DD97CAB2308.jpeg Been a German car tech for 25 years specializing in Porsche’s. Have owned almost every model over the years, wish I still owned my 77 930!!! Crazy how the values have gone up the last few years. Happy with my 87 Carrera( turbo’d 3.2, big reds, hre’s) looking for an early long hood shell to do an rsr build and transfer the 87 drivetrain!
     
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  13. Tehmbrick

    Tehmbrick SILVER Star

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    Subscribed - recently acquired a '74 and have a similar plan (but not nearly the shop), and also a Canuck. If you're not already aware, Wayne from Crushers Rule moved out to Ontario a number of years back. He may be in your neighborhood and is a TLC guru/builder.
     
  14. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    Its been a while, here's a brief update...

    So all the body is completely disassembled and on a dolly ready to go to the media blaster. I will show pics of that later.

    Today I did my first batches of zinc "copy cad" plating. The trigger for the restoration was a leak from the sight glass on the carb, so a rebuild was in order. I had the carb rebuilt 15 years ago, but it never really ran great. Acceleration wasnt great, but I just thought thats how they drove. Well upon tearing down the carb I found gaskets blocking air jets, completely inoperable acceleration pump and mismatched bit inside.


    I started up the plating kit, its a Caswell "copy cad" kit. I experimented with bead blasting, degreasing, with and without acid baths, wet or drying with a heat-gun between steps, temperatures, etc. I was able to recreate a cad look, and various levels of shine and iridescence with brightener and soak times. I am pretty happy with the results and the card is going to look great!

    Images arent loading tonight, will try tomorrow...
     
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  15. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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  16. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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  17. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    Carb getting some of its newly plated jewelry...

    The pic with the three piles of hardware are as removed from the truck, after glass bead blasting, and after plating.

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  18. VTX78FJ40

    VTX78FJ40

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    Impressive.
     
  19. thebigredrocker

    thebigredrocker SILVER Star

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    Incredible work. I recognize that stopper:cheers: Hopefully you didn’t twist off any screw heads removing the choke and throttle butterflies.

    Is your airhorn warped between the two screws on sight glass side? Just above letters ISO.

    Have you thought about drilling a port so you can hook a vac advance dissy directly to carb. That flat pad just right of idle mix screw is the spot.
     
  20. JohnJL

    JohnJL

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    Thanks guys.

    Even filing the back side of the butterfly screws off I had them snap. Thats OK, I have brass screws and taps.

    I have the original distributor, and a DUI unit I had planned to keep using that which doesnt have a vacuum advance. I dont think the airhorn is warped. It wastn leaking there before, though I admit I didnt "deck" the upper on a pane of glass.
     
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