1997 FZJ80 Rehabilitation (1 Viewer)

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Apr 17, 2018
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After installing the lock screws into the lock ring. The axle shaft was installed with a fresh paper gasket. I cleaned the mating surfaces on both the hub and the axle with steel wool after taking them off the truck. I mention this only because the odds of them being clean enough to slap back together is pretty much zero and if you're like me, doing this for the first time, it's worth noting that there was a decent amount of cleaning to be done. WAY less than the front axle, but still.
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The axle flanges will get paint as well but due to the nature of the cone washers and hardware I decided I would paint them after they were assembled.
 
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I forgot to mention that I didn't install the inner axle seal - the little one that goes in the spindle. That's because I chose not to use grease in the bearings. This is contrary to the FSM and normally I would avoid ignoring factory service specs. But just like it's been stated here before, we choose to modify our vehicles in numerous other ways and sometimes we flex service specifications to accommodate those mods. In this case, several well respected members of this forum have run the rear axle without oil seals (the inner ones) or grease - opting instead to allow the diff oil to lubricate the bearings. I see no reason why this approach should not work, since the inner seal definitely doesn't keep oil out of the hub. Time will tell if this was a bad decision but I suspect it will turn out just fine.
 
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Messages
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While torquing the last nut onto the drive flange, the stud stripped :bang:

I spent the next half our removing the nut and then the stud with a file, cold chisel, hammer, and a pair of vise grips. Not my favorite exercise but it was successful and I replaced the stud and nut with new Toyota parts. Thankfully I had a few on hand.
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It'll be back to the brakes today. I removed all of the pistons from the calipers but I still need to clean everything and then rebuild with new seals, boots, guide pins, etc.
 
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Finished rebuilding the brake calipers and got them installed. The :princess: helped me bleed the brakes like a champ. Lots of pedal pumping and holding.
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Moving in a week. Cutting it way closer than I wanted but it'll be fine. Started installing new bushings and caster plates today. Not done but made good progress. That's the last thing on my list. The new brakes seem to be working well but I do have an ABS light that's yelling at me. Not sure why. I cleaned the ABS sensors when I had the hubs open but maybe I overlooked something?
 
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Messages
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Went ahead and threw some torque stripes on the caliper mounting bolts. Same reasoning as the lower knuckles studs - they're known to back out and I don't want to have to break out a torque wrench to know that they're tight.
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Last stop before the move. Caster plates. This version brought to you by @landtank. Not done yet but I got the passenger side plates fitted, notches cut, old bushings out, new in, and back in place. Really hoping this fixes the wandering on the road and some of my driveline vibes.
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Side note: I got a little enthusiastic with the sawzall and notched two of the openings in the control arm. I don't think it will have a serious effect on anything but obviously not desirable. A little more caution would have avoided the issue all together. Now I know.
 
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I also think the hardware on that passenger lca might have been loose. Not crazy loose but not torqued to spec either. I have no solid evidence that they were torqued incorrectly but they just seemed to come off easier than I would have guessed. That being said, I suspect the Fluid Film has helped all of the fasteners under the truck be more readily removed (when they're supposed to be). It seems like most everything I've touched recently has come apart nicely and nothing has been siezed. Perhaps I'm just lucky but I doubt it. I will be thoroughly coating everything in Fluid Film again before hitting the road. The last thing I need is road salt ruining all my hard work.
 
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Finished pressing the new bushings in the driver's side LCA, got both of them installed, torqued to spec (at ride height), and plates welded to the leading edge of the brackets. The Wit's End press tools worked flawlessly, highly recommend. Also recommend cutting the old bushings out unless you have a very stable shop press set up. My Harbor Frieght special was sketchy enough that I just used it to press the centers put of the old rubbers, then cut the outer bushing sleeve with a sawzall. Little clean up and some grease and the new ones slid right in.
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I didn't take pictures of my welds because, well, they sucked. Let's just be happy that they aren't structural...but they'll keep the plates from sliding that that's all I was after anyway. Threw a quick coat of rattle can goodness on top after they cooled to ward off the cancer. As I mentioned before, I will be fluid filming the entire underside of the truck soon so the paint didn't need to be perfect or super thick.
 
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Took her for a spin after I got everything put back together. Wow, did those plates help! They aren't magic but they're pretty close. Coming from what I'm pretty sure was negative caster to where it is now is very noticeable. The truck used to pull when you braked hard - like bad pull. To the point that I refused to let my wife drive it like that all the way to VA (hence all the maintenance lately). Now with the brakes being completely rebuilt with new components (minus the booster and hard lines) and the caster plates installed - the brakes just stop you. Ya know, like they're supposed to... slow, fast, swerving, stab the breaks, gently apply the brakes...doesn't matter, they stop. I'm very pleased and relieved that my effort wasn't for nothing. Thanks to everyone who has helped me along the way and to the scores of mud members who have helped simply by posting useful information for others to find. I'm not done with the 80 yet, so I'll be back, but this is probably all I'll get done before we relocate.
 

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