86 FJ60 Dash R&R

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Jul 20, 2006
I'm trying to get the trim bezel off that is the square piece that runs around the edge where the A/C controls are. I've removed all the obvious screws, trim is loose all around the area expect near the cigarette lighter and the lower passenger side.

Is this held in by clips or someting I'm not seeing..?
I've had it out before but its already cracked and I don't want to finish it off.

Any tips on removal?

I'm working my way down to the heater core.
Hey Elbert, I am closing in on my 9 year rebuild and filled coolant the other day...just discovered that my core is bad....pull the radio and the ash tray, there are screws in side the ashtray hole. I actually just pulled the dash an hour ago but left the metal frame (bezel?) that housed the instruments and heat/ac controls. There are bolts between the door pillars and the dash and some underneath the dash. If you pull the speedo cluster there is a somewhat convoluted area around the steering column, not sure I want to pull everything. and I hope I can get to the core without taking the A/c coil out too, it's possible just not as easy.
for the dash, two or three nuts either side and a couple of clips in the middle, unfortunately I figure the more stuff I take out the easier the final job will be
ok...maybe its the stuff inside the ashtray hole... I'm hoping thats what it is and just a dumb oversight on my part. I'm hoping I can get most of the crap clear...there in the surrounding area above the heater core. and remove the two unions on the hear core pipe and slide the heater core out through the top. I have most of the other stuff unbolted.....the dash is basically loose except for the area right there on top of the steering column, I've not discovered just yet how the main dash metal bracket is retained there...I don't want to remove the major bracket that mounts to the firewall and holds the steering column unless I have no other option. I've not dropped the column but it looks like I might have to.

So far the area there on top of the steering column and the bezel area I've noted have been a minor challenge. I"ll go out and look with a flashlight a little bit later this evening to make sure I'm good on the "ashtray area"...

here is what it looks like this afternoon.

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You can see the a/c controls are in the way, the a/c duct work above the heater core, and while not shown good in this pic you can see where part of the metal bracket to the dash overlaps on top of the steering column area. I've not torn down the dash all the way before...so I'm looking as I go.

I need to find another trim bezel that goes around the a/c control head and down by the ash tray...its cracked from age and I was trying not to simply destroy it.

Thanks for the advice, I'm hoping to finish this up tomorrow! IF you have done this before please chime in with any roadblock or advice...

this is my first go around going this deep. with the pic I see where you are. the a/c heat control are is pretty easy, a couple of the elec plugs where a little resistant. I am trying to get the defrost vent out of the way, then I think the heater core should come out fairly easily? While I am at it I wuld like to try and replace all the completely degraded foam, especially way over on the pass side on that fresh air door.
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The lighter itself comes apart in 2 pieces maybe three I can't remember. The crome part comes off and there is a brass part behind it. That may be part of your sticking and the passenger lower there is a screw there but I'm guessing you got it already maybe the ashtray surround has some sticking part I can't remember there being one but maybe? Good Luck those Bezels seem to be like cruiser gold these days.
Ok I see the two screws in the ashtray pocket, not sure if that holds the bezel or not.

I've not tried to unscrew the cig lighter, was not sure if I needed to do that, but certainly it may be part of the issue. I have the dash loose at the far left and right...its the area around the steering column and A/C control head that are my current hang-ups.

Yea that A/C control head bezel or whatever Toyota calls it....is rather easy to break and it looks like mine broke some time ago right around one of the screw bosses. My truck is mainly a trail machine so I'm not heartbroken about it, and it has a number of other cosmetic challenges that outweight a simple broken bezel but here and there I try and make improvements, even though I've gutted the carpet and the lower door trim associated with the carpet, I've been debating about scraping the headliner too, but Ii've not come up with a good solution for replacement.
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a little more work today and I think I will have it....and the way I figure it, after 27 years all this stuff could use a good cleaning.

Elbert, tell me, does my shifter look too far over to the right to you?


I'm not sure on the shift tower...(left or right), its been some time since I've had my transmission out or the boot off and I did not pay attention to the orientation when I had mine off. I'm running stock mounts and marks adapter with a V8, so mine should be "right", but I don't recall if its sits in the center or not.
screws in the ash tray pocket were the key to getting the a/c control head bezel off. (two screws at the top of the ash tray pocket (you can see the screws once you take the ask tray out...up at the top (2 screws).
your shifter holes are in the correct position if that's what you are asking. the T case shifter has a crappy throw IMO which is why I love my new twinsticks.
Well the closer I get the more I'm inclined to think the entire air box has to come out or at least come loose. I thought I might could get the defrost duct out and come out with the heater core from the top and back but that does not look workable. These little clips that hold the heater core pipe flare to the hard line flare feel like they are on super tight and it may be fun to get them off without damage. A number of places you can see where the old insulation in the A/C system has basically rotted away.

This is a royal pain in the #$@# to screw with.
hey Elbert, have you found a new heater core yet? I assume so, I have been looking and don't really want to go aftermarket, but a "Toyota" part seems hard to find.

KWalkerM...I was not really asking about the holes...they are where they have always been since I bought the truck in '86....I was wondering how the shift tower placement looks in relation to that hole. I had a tranny mount issue that I resolved but it still does not look correct to me (too far over to the right)
only option I know of right now that makes sense is an aftermarket heater core... I'm not paying $300+ for a heater core from toyota. I bought mine from Rock Auto. There will be some delay on this job as I have to stop and work on some other stuff (non car related). I don't know if the heater core is still available new. I guess you could get the old one rebuilt (maybe)...I don't know.

Man...some if not all of the insulation on the flat surfaces of the A/C duct work is toast...if you just touch it ..it comes off in flakes and crumbles. A number of the ducts seem to still have insulation on them but I'm sure its fragile too.
I took all mine off and re insulated with some stuff I found at ACE it was the same thickness but much stouter and sticky backed so it's an easy job. I also added cruisercrap to everything I thought would resonate sound including the underside of the dash.
ok, hands filthy....drop the steering column about four inches, a 12mm socket up underneath there and it is free, temp a nut back on the column. I yi yi
and here is the kicker....it was leaking out of the tube (a crack) right inside the firewall. Core looks good but do I really want to put a 30 year old core back in? And that is one stupid tube arrangement, O-rings? really?

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