71 Patina shop truck build on the cheap (1 Viewer)

cruisermatt

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Hey guys, it’s been a long time coming but after the last few years of parts trucks that haven’t amounted to anything I finally bought a 40 that is complete enough that there’s a chance it will actually run and drive under my ownership :)

I just bought a new shop for my business (CruiserMatt’s Off-Road in Winter Park Fl) and pretty much everything I need is very close by. Toyota dealership a mile down the road, auto parts stores, hardware etc. so I’d been thinking it would be neat to have a fun small nimble vehicle to run around a 3 mile radius or so, was looking at kei trucks like Suzuki Carry etc, but didn’t feel like dropping the coin on an otherwise useless vehicle.

sure enough last week my buddy @GLTHFJ60 texts me about a 71 Del (@SFROMAN ) wanted out of his backyard.

I get the link this album, scrolled through it on my iPhone in about 30 seconds, and sent Del a deposit. I didn’t ask too many questions.

yeah the tub is really rusty, but I saw that it was pretty much complete and actually relatively unmolested, so at this point I’m figuring I’ll have a quick fun rat rod of a stock-ish 40 to run around in. It even has a title.

 
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cruisermatt

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So last week after devising a rough plan to load not only the complete 71 but also the additional 71 rolling chassis and tub that was included with the sale on my best friend’s 20ft trailer, I took a nap Monday and hit the road at about 11pm, arriving in Apex NC the next morning.

the 71 upon first sight. Those are two hard top skins stacked on top of each other


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cruisermatt

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I attemped some mild haggling but after seeing how complete and original this 40 is I paid the asking price and loaded up. It is one of the rare occasions that something has actually looked nicer in person then in pictures. :)

We managed to get the trucks loaded up and strapped down in about an hour and a half. Thanks for the extra help @GLTHFJ60

the hard top wasn’t bolted to the truck and after quick inspection I decided that not only were the sides and top beyond repair, I had no plans of running a hard top anyways so it made more sense to leave it in NC and let the hatch and glass which was all still good help someone out up there.

removing of the hard top revealed a cheap roll bar and immediately made the 40 look ten times nicer.

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cruisermatt

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The drive home was awful.
I left Apex around 11:45 after filling up and was hoping to get home around 10pm.

The first two tire failures were due to the trailer fender breaking and slicing the sidewalls right off. It took me till The second failure to realize this. Fortunately I had two spare tires.

after all this I was on the home stretch at about 10:30pm but unfortunately 15 miles out I had an actual blowout. I suspect the white 40 shifted a bit (it was on a 4x4 that we wedged in as a ramp to get the tire over the pipe bumper of the other chassis) and made the right side of the trailer too heavy. I moved one wheel over from the left side and limped the last 15 miles with three tires and pulled into my shop just past midnight. At that point decided I might as well go all the way and unload too. Went to bed at 4am.




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cruisermatt

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So now we have a $2600 (minus whatever I can recoupe from selling parts I don’t use as well as the extra chassis) complete FJ40 that’s been sitting since 1996.

here’s some better pictures of what I have gotten myself into. You may notice I have already begun scrubbing the outer overspray paint layer.

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cruisermatt

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When beginning a new project, I always ask my friends and customers, what are the GOALS. I think this is the most overlooked part of any vehicle project. Because how can you make a plan without a goals? This is most often how I see projects spiral out of control in either magnitude and/or budget and end up with a poor outcome. Goals can change and that’s Ok too! My goals have changed a bit in the last few days as I’ve assessed the truck more closely.

So the short-term goals for this project:

-have a fun reliable 40 to drive around town as a daily driver/partrunner. Will likely end up becoming a very regular driver for me as my FJ62 will likely be going under the knife for a lot of rust repair and body work next year.
-keep cost right around $3500 for phase 1.
phase 1 is running/driving. That’s out of pocket cost, not actual value. True value is obviously much higher on a reliably driving FJ40 these days.
-keep it all Land Cruiser so it can be built and maintained easily and cost effectively (I have a Cruiser shop so, lots of used take offs at my disposal and wholesale accounts for new parts. I also get offered parts for free or super cheap from folks who want to clean out their garages fairly regularly. This can be both a good and bad thing :lol:).
-have FUN!

long term goals:

-Repair the really rough sections of the tub and attempt to match the original patina of the front of the truck.
-turn this into a bit of a advertisement piece for my business (want to do some cool old-school hand painted lettering on the 1/4’s after their repair, or maybe doors initially)

for those who have seen my FJ62 project, this FJ40 will be a massive departure from that in terms of both the amount of fabrication and ambition :lol:
 
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cruisermatt

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So the plan. Keep in mind I am trying to do this using as much stuff as I already have on hand.

-FJ60 2F. @Ned had a cylinder with no compression and decided to 3FE swap his 60, we did some trading and I needed up with his complete 2F including all accessories.

-FJ60 H42. I don’t have any short 80-84 H42’s but I have and give away plenty of 85-87 H42’s from H55f swaps into 85-87 60’s. so I am going probably going to attempt to convert one into a short version using a 80-84 output shaft i bought from Mark A. A lot cheaper then shipping a transmission.
I may change my mind on this and just run the transmission as it is since I’ll have to get driveshafts done anyways. Not sure offhand if transmission tunnel clearance will be an issue with the longer H42. Either way is a option though. This would be nice in the off chance I put a H55f in this truck down the road but that is unlikely.

-split case, obviously. I have a complete case minus a front housing half that I wrecked in my FJ62 running it for 25k miles without a spacer in the AA adapter.
@meatloaf graciously offered to donate a replacement housing. It’s a 34mm, and the rest of the parts are 38mm, but I have a plan to fix that :hmm:

-lastly, FJ60/80 steering and FJ60 disc swap up front.

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cruisermatt

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This 40 has been sitting since 1996. A lot of that has been under trees, outside, etc. it was dirty. Since the dash was whiteish and the exterior was white ish I had assumed this truck was Olympus white.

as I was looking over it I noticed this on the rear door.


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Inspired by @wngrog Cruisers I busted out the CLR, lacquer thinner, scotch rite and steel wool and got to scrubbing.

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cruisermatt

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It turns out that the whole thing had a single thin coat of bright white shot over the original paint with almost zero prep. For at least the last 30 years it’s been protecting the original paint perfectly, and scrubs off relatively easy with the 0000 steel wool.

I am most pleased with the bezel which still has its original Shell Ivory perfectly patina’d under five layers of spray paint. I still need to finish the bottom and around the headlights, I will do that along with being more thorough on the other panel edges when I take the front end apart for the motor swap and PS install

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cruisermatt

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I now have the majority of the 40 down to the original paint, I still have to finish the windshield frame, rockers and doors but I will get there over time. Not going to spend much time on the 1/4’a since the drivers side is mostly bondo and they’re both super rusty and going to get worked in eventually. Eventually I want to weld up the antenna holes and try to fix the bondo spot by the drivers kick vent and blend them so no point wasting time on those spots.

Taking badges and lights off and cleaning under them are really making this thing pop. Fluid film on deck.

would everyone agree that this is Coronado beige? It actually does not look nearly as brown in person as it does in pictures.

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cruisermatt

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I’m trying to figure out what color this 40 actually is. I’m torn between whether it’s Cygnus white or Coronado beige. The bezel and body color appear to be the same or extremely close. Is it possible the body is Coronado beige and the bezel is Shell Ivory? The body does not look as dark as pictures of other Coronado beige 40’s online.
 

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I’m trying to figure out what color this 40 actually is. I’m torn between whether it’s Cygnus white or Coronado beige. The bezel and body color appear to be the same or extremely close. Is it possible the body is Coronado beige and the bezel is Shell Ivory? The body does not look as dark as pictures of other Coronado beige 40’s online.
Have you looked in the glovebox at the paint?
 

cruisermatt

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well guys in typical Cruisermatt fashion I may have just switched gears and turned this build around in a bit of a completely different direction. we’ll see in a few days.

so much for goals and plans! :lol:
(Goals and plans actually staying largely the same)
 

cruisermatt

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@cruisermatt I remember oogling over that very truck a few years ago in his back yard. That guy is a tough but fair negotiator but it looks like its in the right hands now. Best of luck on the build and I will be watching with anticipation.

Del could probably pick me up by my neck and choke me out with one hand, Darth Vader-style if he wanted to :lol:
@SFROMAN
 
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