Any dissatisfied aluminum tub owners

Joined
May 25, 2004
Messages
30
I am looking at several FJ40s, trying to purchase one, some which have aluminum tubs. I have searched all the posts here about the pros and cons, so is there anyone that has a aluminum tub that wishes they had steel or sorry they chose aluminum due to problems they have had?
 

hodag

 
Joined
Jun 24, 2005
Messages
698
Location
Omaha, Nebraska
The experience I had with a Aluminum tub was poor at best. It was a 1st gen. Aqualu tub and it was a POS. The fit and finish and welds of the tub itself looked good, but it didnt line up well.

The main complaint of the Al tub is that no stock cruiser parts fit it. We tried early hard doors, late hard doors and neither fit. Dont even think about using a factory hardtop. Neither barn doors or ambi doors fit. We went as far as getting a Paki soft top which worked (sort of) to keep the elements out.

The other problem is grounding, this is self explanatory. Also, you have the oxidation caused by the difference in metals (there is a name for this reaction, but I cant remember it). It causes powder to form on all the sufaces where the Al join steel.

If you ask me, wait and find a good steel tub 40. Thats what we did and wont ever look back. Between selling the tub and Paki top we were able to get a rust free tub and hardtop.

Hodag
 

dmaddox

 
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2003
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NY, NY
I have a 2nd generation Aqualu tub and could not be happier. Not sure if hodag is speaking from here-say or from personal experience. Of course I have the 2nd generation, not 1st so he may be right on.

1. My doors fit perfect.
2. The welds are solid rock
3. It is damn near bullet proof
4. Fits everything like a glove.
5. Installation was a piece of cake.
6. Epoxy primer and good paint solve the oxidation/electrolysis
7. I tipped my fj40 onto its side, smashed my metal door and hardtop, my tub did not even budge.
8. Its lightweight
9. It will not rust
10. It is re-enforced behind tire carrier and around the corners, very very durable.

11-100. It kicks ass, fits perfect, does not rust, factory things fit just fine (gas tank, doors, gas emissions, etc..), and if you position yourself just right, will scratch your back too.

Cheers,

Ragman - proud owner of an AL tub
 

kc_chevota

SILVER Star
 
 
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Feb 19, 2003
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Kansas city MO
dmaddox said:
I have a 2nd generation Aqualu tub and could not be happier. Not sure if hodag is speaking from here-say or from personal experience. Of course I have the 2nd generation, not 1st so he may be right on.

1. My doors fit perfect.
2. The welds are solid rock
3. It is damn near bullet proof
4. Fits everything like a glove.
5. Installation was a piece of cake.
6. Epoxy primer and good paint solve the oxidation/electrolysis
7. I tipped my fj40 onto its side, smashed my metal door and hardtop, my tub did not even budge.
8. Its lightweight
9. It will not rust
10. It is re-enforced behind tire carrier and around the corners, very very durable.

11-100. It kicks ass, fits perfect, does not rust, factory things fit just fine (gas tank, doors, gas emissions, etc..), and if you position yourself just right, will scratch your back too.

Cheers,

Ragman - proud owner of an AL tub

ditto love mine too
 

dmaddox

 
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2003
Messages
1,797
Location
NY, NY
I used that reflectix stuff - basically looks like silver bubble wrap. I used it on the underside of the tranny hump - and undercoated the rest of the underside of the tub.

no heat issues here.....
 

Mark W

 
Joined
Jan 7, 2005
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6,231
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The Greatland
I have installed about 6 of the AL tubs. Sold a few others and I have one on one of my own '40s. Installed carefully ALL of the OEM parts fit fine. As do aftermarket parts meant for '40s

Everyone has been perfectly happy with their tub and they love them. As do I.


Mark...
 
Joined
Sep 16, 2004
Messages
2,804
Location
Emporia, KS
I like mine too (love is such a strong word). Only part on my 77 that didn't fit the way I wanted it to was the gas tank cover and the cover over the filler neck. OTT, it has been pretty much bullet proof.
 

Archengine

SILVER Star
 
Joined
Nov 6, 2003
Messages
291
Location
Frankfort Ky
I would highly recomend the aqualu tub to anyone. It has held up just fine, paint adhered well, and has been smashed into some rock aswell. The only complaint I could give would be that I spent 20 hours sanding the body for paint, which, I feel should be already done for a $4500 body. Another problem I had, though I couldn't blame Aqualu, was that the holes drilled in the firewall didn't work for my components. My Feb 79' truck was assembled with a early to 78' clutch master, steering column, and miscellaneous parts. Aside from that, the tub was a work of art.
 

dmaddox

 
 
Joined
Nov 7, 2003
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NY, NY
electrical - a no go when grounding to the tub
I had to run ground wires for the rear heater, rear running lights, etc...
 

Mud_Guppie

EBI Cruisers
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2002
Messages
1,297
Location
Port Coquitlam, BC
there is always a chance of a bad installer so look at alignments of body parts

we sell a lot of those tubs and install a lot as well and have always been happy with the construction and fit.

My opinion on the tubs is as follows
-they are solid
-fit nice, but it's not just going to drop into place. You will need to install the top and doors to align everything before drilling and bolting
-I don't ground anything to the tub anyways so grounds have never been an issue
-It's nice to drive something that is way quieter
-I'm making plans to install a tub on my FJ40
-I've used the FJ45 parts as well and been very happy (buy my 1965 SWB FJ45!!!!)
- A customer had the misfortune of hitting a tree at hi speed. His cowl was destroyed and he damaged a lot of parts, he could have been killed but he had a pile of horse shoes and a lot of luck
His tub was perfect! and went on his rebuild
-heat issues could be a problem I guess but that's what mats are for. I dare you to touch my floor while I'm on the highway!

I highly recommend the second gen tubs especially if the install work is already done!

We're doing an install right now, if you would like any detailed pics of areas of concern on those Cruisers let me know and I'll help you out
 
Last edited:

MJM

 
Joined
Feb 26, 2003
Messages
800
Location
Next to the Falls in OH
Great Product

I have the 2nd gen Aqula tube and could not be happier. If you are getting a 79+ tube you may want to get rid of the mounting plates that cover the cowl, tub joint they are a little mickey mouse. Hit me a PM if you want to see how I did it.
MJM

I have the video for installation if you want it just PM me and for shipping it is yours.
MJM
 

hodag

 
Joined
Jun 24, 2005
Messages
698
Location
Omaha, Nebraska
I didnt mean to piss in anyones Wheaties, but my experience was with a first gen Aqualu tub. From what Ive heard and read here, it sounds like they have addressed the problems of the first generation. Im glad they got better because the one we had was a headache.

I still vote for a steel tub, if you can find one. Id be interested to see the repro steels.

Hodag
 
Joined
Oct 11, 2003
Messages
52
dmaddox said:
electrical - a no go when grounding to the tub
I had to run ground wires for the rear heater, rear running lights, etc...

Easy fix (and it makes for clean wiring):
Install a ground bus somewhere in the cab (mine was under the drivers seat), gound it to the frame and run your individual grounds to it.

You get a better ground and convienient access to all of your grounds if you have a suspected problem in the future.
 
Joined
Jan 31, 2005
Messages
147
Location
Central WI
Currenlty running a Gen I tub on my 81 and fit seems to be great, no problems with door alignment other than having to put a spacer in between strike plate and the tub. No signs of electrolosis. As for the body work, I am timid to greing the welds down for a smooth finish in paint....butthen again this is a non original cruiser....and why should i worry about a perect finish.... :rolleyes:
 
Joined
May 15, 2003
Messages
95
Location
Northern California
To bad we couldn't all order some of the tubs from panama all at once to get a good deal on shipping. Then you get a new steel body. I would want steel because if I ever wanted to weld to the body for what ever reason, I could do that. I dont have a set up for aluminum and even if I did, Al could warp more. as for grounds running extra wire wouldn't be bad at all. Steel rusts so many times you can't get a good ground anyway. I think the best part about Alu tubs is that you know it wont rust. I hate the coast. sorry I had to add that. cheers
 
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