'88 FJ62 Build/Restoration: First Owner (1 Viewer)

Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Messages
23
Location
Tucson, AZ
*First post!*

Hi Folks,

My name's CJ and I've been a lurking Mud for a few years and decided it was time to post the progress I'm finally making on my 62.

To start though, I wanna tell the story of my Cruiser. My family is the first owner, and my dad bought the car new from the dealer in New Jersey in '88. This is actually the car that I ever rode in. My parents brought me home from the hospital in our 62 in 1992.

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 7.29.30 PM.png
My mom and I (in the passenger seat) coming home from the hospital

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 7.30.03 PM.png Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 7.30.28 PM.png
Camping and adventures in California

I remember growing up in the car, going on trips around California, dealing with the stupid lap belts, and I also remember how my sister and I would help my dad clean the Cruiser using a paint brush to get dust out of the cracks of the interior (which sucked when I was a kid..). My dad babied the hell out of it, and I'm glad he did! My dad unfortunately passed away in '99, and my sister, mom, and myself moved to Tucson. My mom had always told me that we "sold" the truck to our family friends in California. I found out though when I was 18, that our family friends were holding onto it and that my mom still had the title in our name! So in 2010 my friend trailered my car from California to Tucson for me! Our family friends said they drove it about once a month for years, and they had it just sitting in their truck yard, until the fuel pump quite, then they let it sit for about a year. So, onto the work I've done so far..

This was my first real project car so there was a large learning curve! When I got it, the main problem was a bad fuel pump. I quickly found out that the access port in the trunk of the 62's are just a tease, and that I would have to pull the whole tank to remove the fuel pump. Unfortunately, my simple Haynes manual deceived me and so finally, after a few months of letting it sit, and having a mechanic friend coming to the rescue, I started my cruiser for the first time!

Things I've done so far (these things have taken a while for me to actually get to):
  • Replaced fuel filter, air filter, oil, etc..
  • Replaced some old leaking fuel lines (ok.. a lot of fuel lines)
  • New thermostat
  • New spark plugs, wires, distributor cap
  • Transmission fluid flush and replaced all of the driveline fluids
  • Replaced gaskets in the front left Aisin hub (it was leaking pretty badly)
  • Resurfaced brake surfaces and new pads all around
  • New O2 sensors
  • and more little annoying things that fail/break when a car hasn't had any major maintenance after sitting for 10 years..
I put 31" BFG A/T's on and now I daily drive her and I've been able to take her on some of the trails around Tucson. After changing the fuel pump 2 years ago though, the check engine light has never come back on! Go Cruisers!!

Best repair though by far has been cleaning the throttle body! the thing was a mess, and now the truck runs incredibly smooth, and now I can actually accelerate! OK... Maybe not accelerate because it's a cruiser, but you get the picture.

10460756_10152785500378418_2210950802637771835_n.jpg

I recently met fellow Cruiser/Mud member Dazed and he's been a great friend to have! He has a sweet rig and he's been more than willing to give me a hand! He's annoyingly convinced me to keep the truck stock for the sake of preserving a first owner cruiser.

So here's the plan hopefully for the next few months:
  • Pull the radiator to have a small leak in the top welded, and then have it rod out. Replace all the coolant hoses, and flush the system.
  • Repair the A/C clutch and have the system recharged. Thankfully, it's not hard to find shops in Tucson, AZ with R12 ;)
  • Install a Light/Medium OME kit- the 25 year old suspension just isn't cutting it anymore..
  • Rebuild the steering knuckles (not looking forward to that...)
  • Send the power steering box off to be rebuilt
  • New tie rod ends
  • Install some QuietCrap
  • Build some storage drawers
  • There is a decent leak somewhere around the transfer that will need to be investigated. For now, I'm just keeping an eye on it and topping it off.
There is some rust unfortunately on the roof and on the Driver's side front pillar. So if anyone knows a good paint/body guy in the Tucson area, please let me know!!

This has been a long post so I'll shut up. I'm in college, don't have a lot of money or time, so I'll keep this thread updated when I can. Hopefully this will keep me motivated to do some more work! As always, any comments, ideas, or advice is greatly appreciated!!

Thanks for checking my truck out and for all of the Mud members who's rigs have kept me dreaming!

Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 6.44.00 PM.png
 

sbelinge

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 20, 2014
Messages
216
Location
Camas, WA
Welcome! I saw your throttle body post on Instagram today. I did the same job this summer along with adjusting the TPS. I had the notion that with each bit of carbon I removed from the TB I was recovering some amount of performance but then the reality of the 3FE beat me over the head… Oh well, it does drive smoother as you mentioned. Your build plan looks just like mine. I did already (3 weeks ago) install new TREs. The driver side TRE was a major PITA! However the others took about 30 seconds a piece. Go figure.
 
Joined
Aug 26, 2013
Messages
528
Location
Winston Salem, NC
Nice pickup and cool story. Can't wait to see what you do with it. So cool you know the history and grew up with the truck!
 
Last edited:
Joined
May 15, 2005
Messages
8,727
Location
Ladysmith
Great story! I envy everyone of you 'original owners'; you'll thank Dazed more than once in the future for his advice!
Keep us posted, glad you're having so much fun with it.
 
Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Messages
23
Location
Tucson, AZ
Welcome! I saw your throttle body post on Instagram today. I did the same job this summer along with adjusting the TPS. I had the notion that with each bit of carbon I removed from the TB I was recovering some amount of performance but then the reality of the 3FE beat me over the head… Oh well, it does drive smoother as you mentioned. Your build plan looks just like mine. I did already (3 weeks ago) install new TREs. The driver side TRE was a major PITA! However the others took about 30 seconds a piece. Go figure.

Sbelinge, Did you adjust the TPS when you pulled off the TB? Is it possible to adjust it when the TB is installed? I used Honda Bond for the gasket and I don't wanna break that seal.
 

rrv333

SILVER Star
Joined
May 2, 2011
Messages
1,603
Location
Weatherford, Texas
Congratulations on getting your family cruiser back. Get a FSM (Factory Service Manual) quickly. You can download a copy here on Mud, for free. A FSM is the only way to go when it comes to repairs on landcruisers, imo. Good luck on your build and keep the forum posted on your progress.
 

gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
SILVER Star
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
12,010
Location
Carson City, NV
Great story and welcome to the family. Check my sig line for most of the FSMs and there is also a thread started in the Classifieds by @Trollhole where he has everything linked.

Keep the progress going, whatever little bit you can and you will enjoy it. Dive in deep as these trucks are a wealth of knowledge and there is nothing quite as satisfying as being able to fix it yourself.

Oh and go for the knuckle rebuild, it is something of a Rite of Passage on these trucks. While incredibly messing, somewhat confusing at first and time consuming it is more than well worth it.
 

sbelinge

SILVER Star
Joined
Feb 20, 2014
Messages
216
Location
Camas, WA
@crazycons49 - The TPS should be removed to adjust it. Get the FSM from the above link, it truly is priceless. I do like to use the Haynes manual too because it has much better pictures and sometimes their directions are better that the FSM. You'll need a multimeter to do the adjustment and I made by hand, a new TB gasket from of the shelf gasket material. Bring in the old gasket to make sure yo get the proper thickness. There may be OEM gaskets available somewhere but I didn't have the time to wait for one. There are a couple of good wright ups here that I used. I'll try to look for them later and post the links. It's not as daunting as it may seem.
 
Joined
Dec 15, 2005
Messages
1,200
Location
Reno, NV
Great story! Congrats on having a great truck - having that family history makes it invaluable. I hope you keep it forever. :)

Keep us posted on your progress.

Cheers :cheers:

Ed
 
Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Messages
23
Location
Tucson, AZ
I finally had some time to work on my truck as soon as the semester ended and made some good progress!

I was having some over heating problems whenever I was climbing a hill for a long time or whenever I sat in traffic for too long in the summer. Turned out there was a small metal fatigue fracture on the top tank of the radiator. There was also some build up of bad radiator fluid slowly forming out of the hoses attaching to the thermostat housing.

A note on removing the tank, the 62 has two auto transmission lines going to the bottom of the radiator that were surprisingly easy to remove. They barely dripped any fluid but I've added some more trans fluid sense running for a bit just to be safe.

The leak was coming from the exposed brass on the top right:
DSCN0725.JPG


DSCN0723.JPG


I took the it over to ABC Radiator in Tucson and was quoted $50 to weld, flush, pressure test, and paint it. They explained though that this leak was a result of metal fatigue and that it could happen again at a different spot but predicting that would be like trying to predict if or when a tire would pop.

ABC did a great job on the tank and they actually welded a few spots on the top tank. I recommend them for anyone in the area! they know what they're doin'. I picked up new hoses and clamps and then the install was just as easy as removing it. I considered the split fan shroud mod but in trying to keep stock I decided against it.

DSCN0732.JPG


DSCN0729.JPG


The result: No more overheating and the engine seems to be much smoother now when idling at temperature (or maybe that's all in my head).

What's Next:

I just received a new, well at least working, A/C clutch from Cruiser Parts. I'm hoping to get that installed this weekend. Any advice here on this procedure? I was thinking I could get away with out getting the system drained first. Should there be enough flexibility in the lines to allow for easier access once the compressor is unbolted?

Thoughts, help and advice are much appreciated! Thanks!
 
Joined
Dec 12, 2012
Messages
23
Location
Tucson, AZ
Update: Lift and Knuckle Rebuild

It's been a while but I finally got an OME Light/Medium and a complete knuckle rebuild kit from Cruiser Outfitters! The front suspension was a breeze. The rear suspension was a PAIN! It took me a long time to figure out how to get the axle lined up with the leafs and to get them to fit. Ended up using ratchet straps to move the the axle side to side and front to back until it was lined up.

Knuckle rebuild was a hoot-and-a-half! Went ahead and replaced the brake rotors while I had it apart. I got a complete rebuild kit but didn't get a hub rebuild kit. I'll get to those later. Not much else to say here other than it was obviously messy!

Before:
IMAG0782.jpg


After:
IMAG0959.jpg


Couple of rebuild parts. Most of the time was spent cleaning parts before rebuilding it. 25+ years of leaking seals made for a big mess!
IMAG0864.jpg
IMAG0941.jpg


And a big shoutout to Dazed for his help and garage! Plus he's got a pretty killer 4BT in his 60 that's a blast! Blue cruisers FTW!
IMAG0947.jpg
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top Bottom