91 FJ80, Feels like it is dragging an anchor (1 Viewer)

Joined
Jun 11, 2018
Messages
25
Location
Virginia
I have a '91 FJ80 with 3FE engine (225,000 miles). When I drive it I literally feel like it is dragging something behind it (performance wise not vibrations and noise). I know I do not have a performance car, but this FJ80 makes my '87 FJ60 with the 2F feel nimble and quick (it is smoother riding and a higher top end (never found the top end 70-ish is fast enough for me) than the 60, but slower feeling).
I can get up to highway speeds and maintain, but let off the gas in the slightest and it immediately slows. Also it does not seem to want to pick up speed gradually (from say roughly 45 to 60 MPH ish) unless I floor it. Gradually push the accelerator down, but no real response - I mean really slow and if I run into any incline it is noticeable (it is pretty flat in cosatal Virginia). At about 1/4" from the floor and no gradual acceleration until i put it to the floor - then it downshifts and accelerates well.
It sat for a year then I got it inspected, brakes replaced (upgrate to larger discs and pads), topped off all fluids, lube and general check. Mechanic said good and solid.
Does not seem to be a dragging brake (runs straight without brakes and continues straight when I apply the brakes).
Gas mileage is 9 to 8.5 MPG (not as good as I hoped, but not a shocker as I have had my 87 since about 1993). Seems smooth running but a little shaky engine-wise when I come off the interstate.
Is this normal? Any recommendations? Thanks
 
Joined
Dec 5, 2010
Messages
607
Location
Northeast PA
 
The guide @TWILLY linked is the authority on the 3fe.

The 3fe is slow, no doubt - but your MPG and description indicate there is a problem. Likely vacuum lines, if I were to guess.. but I would consult the list, and evaluate your truck to see if anything has been replaced.
 
Joined
Mar 1, 2015
Messages
534
Location
Oroville, CA
 
how's the timing?
compression?
Spark Plugs all look good?

I would do a full check out of the cooling system before summer. If your top-end isn't tip-top it will loose quite a bit of kick when put under load. The engine is so strong that even when major things are wrong with it, it will still start, run, and get you where you need to go for a long time.
 
Joined
Nov 4, 2010
Messages
490
Location
Langley, BC
 
One of the times I had a rear caliper dragging I didn't get much for vibrations or veering one way or the other. I did notice it would slow quicker and didn't like to get up to highway speeds similar to what you describe and noticed reduced economy. I'd check to see if the rims are warm/hot after driving.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
9,359
Location
New Jersey
 
 
It's a 30 year old tractor. Check the simple things first.

Do the bellcranks work correctly on the rear brakes or are they seized open?
Are the rear brake shoes set correctly?
Do the individual wheels rotate without binding?
Is there gear oil in the diffs and transfer case?
Is there grease in the steering knuckles?
Is there good ATF in the transmission and at the proper level?
Is your toe in set correctly? Too much toe in either direction will feel like you're dragging something.

Once the basic mechanicals have been checked out you can then move on to the tune up.
 
Joined
Jun 11, 2018
Messages
25
Location
Virginia
Thanks everyone. Long time to get back around to this the past year has been crazy for everyone. Turned out to be a few simultaneous problems - Accelerrator cable wits the biggest culprit. A brake issue also - dragging (did the upgrade to the brakes larger calipers from the late 80 series and 100 series pads). Still not what it should be, but worlds better. Thanks again
 
Joined
Jan 19, 2005
Messages
1,319
Location
South west utah
 
 
 
I have a '91 FJ80 with 3FE engine (225,000 miles). When I drive it I literally feel like it is dragging something behind it (performance wise not vibrations and noise). I know I do not have a performance car, but this FJ80 makes my '87 FJ60 with the 2F feel nimble and quick (it is smoother riding and a higher top end (never found the top end 70-ish is fast enough for me) than the 60, but slower feeling).
I can get up to highway speeds and maintain, but let off the gas in the slightest and it immediately slows. Also it does not seem to want to pick up speed gradually (from say roughly 45 to 60 MPH ish) unless I floor it. Gradually push the accelerator down, but no real response - I mean really slow and if I run into any incline it is noticeable (it is pretty flat in cosatal Virginia). At about 1/4" from the floor and no gradual acceleration until i put it to the floor - then it downshifts and accelerates well.
It sat for a year then I got it inspected, brakes replaced (upgrate to larger discs and pads), topped off all fluids, lube and general check. Mechanic said good and solid.
Does not seem to be a dragging brake (runs straight without brakes and continues straight when I apply the brakes).
Gas mileage is 9 to 8.5 MPG (not as good as I hoped, but not a shocker as I have had my 87 since about 1993). Seems smooth running but a little shaky engine-wise when I come off the interstate.
Is this normal? Any recommendations? Thanks
Something is not right if your only getting 8.5 to 9 mpg. My 91 with 280,000 miles, 4:88's, rear auto locker, 35's, front and rear armor, and a winch always got anywhere from 10.5 to 16 mpg. And that is in Utah where I am commonly going from 3,000ft to 10,000 ft elevation in less than an hour.

I think your rig needs the full tune up posted above by Jon Held. Your poor fuel economy indicates that things aren't running as they should be.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2020
Messages
10
Location
USA
Thanks everyone. Long time to get back around to this the past year has been crazy for everyone. Turned out to be a few simultaneous problems - Accelerrator cable wits the biggest culprit. A brake issue also - dragging (did the upgrade to the brakes larger calipers from the late 80 series and 100 series pads). Still not what it should be, but worlds better. Thanks again
Im having some similar problems with acceleration im not dragging but my 80 looses power at high speeds and does not regain power if i slow down abit its alot like you described. Did you replace the acceleration cable completely? OEM? What was the difference in performance after you replaced it? thanks
 

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