Builds 1978 FJ40 Crawler Build (1 Viewer)

DangerNoodle

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To all the purists out there, sorry in advance. This build is going to be my more hardcore offroading rig. It is getting FJ80 axles locked with ARBs, 5.29 Gears, a NV4500, 383 Stroker, 3-link front suspension, SOA rear, and 37"s. More pictures to come soon.

I am working on some small side projects for now, until the build starts. (Edit: Build starts on page 4)

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My relative has a v8, nv4500, and 4.88s on 35s. Personally I feel the 4.88s were too low of a setup on the street. In 5th gear at around 70 the rpms are rather high. I probably wouldn't do too many bumper mods until the suspension is dialed in just in case u have to modify the frame.
 

jim land

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You don't need 5:29 gear for the street , for better crawl ratio you need an orion t-case or a split case with 4:1 gear upgrade
 
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Nice. Thought it was onshape. I’m on there too. I’ve been using onshape for several years now. Love it!

Would love to check the file out if you are willing to post the view only link.

I have a fair amount of stuff on onshape that I have designed/built for my 78.
 
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Great progress! You are making quick work of it

Seems like you are going to have some huge loads on that mount point to the truck when the truck is bouncing down the road. I’m sure that the tire side is going to be significantly heavier than the carrier side. You think it is going to be stout enough?
 

DangerNoodle

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Great progress! You are making quick work of it

Seems like you are going to have some huge loads on that mount point to the truck when the truck is bouncing down the road. I’m sure that the tire side is going to be significantly heavier than the carrier side. You think it is going to be stout enough?
I'm planning on tying it in 2 more locations. I just have several broken bolts to extract first. Fun!
 

DangerNoodle

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Its been a few days, so here is a bit of an update. It's been taking a while to get stuff done with work and the million other projects that are needing to get done around the house.

Lets get back to the build.

My dad was kind enough to extract all of the broken bolts.
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I started on the tire carrier and plate. I wanted to be able to fit up to a 40" tire, so the main post is about 20.5" tall. I used 6" x 1.5" u channel for the plate. Its what was lying around and it seems to do the job quite well.

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I also ended up tying the carrier into the frame in two more places, next to the lights. With the gussets, it really stiffened up and doesn't flex any more, even with a 120 pound tire hanging from it. The hinges are also doing really well. They have no flex in them, which is perfect. I can flex the suspension with the carrier and the hinges don't care at all. There are supposed to be 2 more bolts in each side of the carrier, but I'm lazy and haven't felt like drilling the holes yet.

My dad is thinking of doing a cable step through the gussets on each side. What do you guys think?

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With all of this in place, I took everything for a shakedown test plowing today. Its really nice to not hear the tire carrier knocking against the frame or squeaking.

Here is the carrier with a 37" tire on it. It sticks about an inch off the side, so its not too bad. That 37" tire is a SOB to hoss up onto the carrier by yourself. They are ungodly awkward and heavy (or maybe I'm just weak), and I'd rather not throw out my back trying to put one up.

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I also added on some 2" lights for reverse lights. I'm not sure how exactly to mount them. Any ideas? I need to be able to mount the basket in there eventually, so there needs to be space for that.

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Anyhow, I'll hopefully get that basket mounted tomorrow. I need to make it about an inch wide to fit a cooler, so that will be interesting. Also, does anyone have any ideas on how to run the wires for the lights? I don't want to have to drill any holes, and those connectors are massive. I might be able to sneak them by the frame and body, but I'm not sure how to get the connectors through. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
 
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We I’d get the cooler rack tacked and then figure out where to put the lights. The pic in post 14 has some lights mounted on the cooler rack.
 

DangerNoodle

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This will probably be the final update for this break of mine. Happy late turkey day everyone, I hope you all had a great meal, and found things to be thankful for. I have gotten a lot done over the past couple of days, and hopefully this is an interesting post. I got everything finished, primed, painted, and mounted, which was all a bear in less than 20 degree weather. Paint sure is a bitch to dry in the cold.

Here is the front light bar and nose bar mounted. I think it looks pretty good.
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Here is the spare tire carrier and basket.

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I also moved the switches for the lockers and lights. I used the ashtray and made a new bezel for it. It just about perfectly fits 5 rocker switches with housings. I didn't order enough housings, so the rest will have to go in later.

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DangerNoodle

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Here are the lights at night. I'm really liking the 12" light bar. 10800 lumens for its size is really great.

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The reverse lights on the cruiser are already pretty OK, but the lights help a ton.

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Well that is all for now. The plan is to start the axle build up over winter break, and I will see you all then!
 

cruisermatt

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Did you buy @White Stripe tires? They were a good deal.
What springs were you thinking for the SOA rear? I would link the rear before the front.. that way you can get the axle a lot farther back and get a real driveshaft in. Especially if you might go auto one day (you probably will)
 

DangerNoodle

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Did you buy @White Stripe tires? They were a good deal.
What springs were you thinking for the SOA rear? I would link the rear before the front.. that way you can get the axle a lot farther back and get a real driveshaft in. Especially if you might go auto one day (you probably will)
I did snag the tires from @White Stripe. They were a good deal and that is hard to pass up. I found a set of stock leafs for the rear that I am planning to use. The rear on there with the OME springs an Rancho 9000s rides really hard. Also, the spring angle on there is not exactly ideal with the 4" lift that is currently on there, so I'm hoping to adjust that when I outboard everything and move it all back. I've read that the stock springs are much softer than the OMEs so there should be a better ride that way. Also, no more Ranchos. I've convinced my dad to go with Bilstein shocks on the rear and King coil-overs on the front. Having a linked rear would be great, but I see more of a use in doing the front just for the better ride quality and better articulation up front, and convincing my dad to spend another 3000+ to build up the rear properly is not something that I can really do. I will move the axle back to about its final spot first, so hopefully we could end up linking it eventually.
 

DangerNoodle

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What I meant was I would link the rear instead of the front
What is the benefit of linking the rear first? Don't you want more of the articulation up front so you can maneuver the front end over things more easily, or am I thinking backwards? Being able to extend the rear driveshaft would be really good, but can't you do that by moving the leafs back or is that not really possible?
 
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My plan was to install inner air locks in those wheels. The krawlers really stick well to the rocks down in bead lock pressure territory. And the inner air locks would reduce leaks compared to traditional bead locks. If u use the 80 front radius arms it would be fairly inexpensive and economical to do a radius arm setup up front. But the flex is so so. The benefit to links in the rear is u can dial in the anti squat which helps climbing steep climbs. Suspension travel is in my opinion not as important as center of gravity and vehicle weight and weight distribution. Their are a lot of directions you can go. So if your considering links, on a budget, with what u have in parts right now, I would do the 80 radius arms up front with stock knuckles and maybe some used jeep coils or something. If u want to 3 link it in the future up front as budget allows so be it. For the rear I've always considered looking into installing a 2 door JK or TJ long arm kit and making it fit the 40 frame. The overall dimensions between the 2 isnt too different. Kings would take a big chunk out of your budget. I would look at something less expensive. My 2 cents.
 

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