Buying my First Cruiser - Need your experience

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Sep 6, 2003
Austin, TX until 8/04 then Chicago, IL until 6/11
I need the help of the many experienced members of this web forum. With your help I will be able to purchase a good cruiser.
I have been looking for a fj60 or fj62 for 2 months and I have spent as much time as possible learning about these vehicles and their pros and cons. I have a good amount of experince under the hood and know what leaks and overly worn parts look like. But, I know my experince is nothing compared to most of you. So, please tell me what I should be looking for when I am looking at these Cruisers. Also, I need to now what a reasonable price is for such a vehicle. I really appreciate all the help anyone would give to me. I do think I am in desperate need of your experince. THanks again

sup bro,

you're way better off than i was (and am. haha) when i bought my 40 last year.

i don't have much to say other than these guys are great. they will do whatever they can, whever they can.

i would be up a creek without em.

so, good luck with your 60/62 (cause i know you're gonna buy one), and welcome to ih8mud,

It's really just common sense. Mileage isn't a huge issue as long as the thing was maintained and not treated like a red-headed stepchild. Look for the obvious, rust on the body, interior wear, how's the drivetrain? Get a compression check on the motor if possible. Where are you, I've got a buddy selling a clean 1987 60 in good shape (south Fla.)
post-buy advice

Here's tip for after you buy the 60/62 that might save you some grief down the road: go to a large empty parking lot and practice sudden stops at 20-30 mph. These vehicles build up serious momentum and easily lose traction even on dry pavement. I've had some very close calls since getting my 62 two years ago. I've since learned to go slow and not tailgate around town, though even a couple of days ago I screeched to a halt because the minivan in front of me stopped short in the middle of the road to talk to someone one the sidewalk.

I apologize in advance if this is unneeded advice.
The most expensive thing on a cruiser is the g/box and t/case.Put it in neutral and climb under and grab the output shafts on the t/case and see if you can move them sideways/up or down.If there is any visible movement it could cost you big time down the road.Movement is often accompanied by oil seepage.My 73 series is 15 yo and has none but I looked at some 78 series yesterday that had been used for drilling and blasting underground and the outputs had nearly 5mm of play on a 2 yo vehicle so it is a good indicator as to how the vehicle has been treated as well.
Another thing that can go wrong is the seal which separates the g/box and t/case.If this fails it will cause all the oil in the t/case to syphoned up into the gearbox oil sump which is higher causing the t/case to fail.To check you need to remove the UPPER FILLER PLUG on the gearbox and if oil pours out it
is a good indicator of a failed seal.There is a quick fix providing no damage has been done which involves the fitting of a readymade hose which replaces the filler plugs on both the g/box and t/case.It returns any excess oil in the g/box back to the t/case.I have one fitted to mine as a precaution
Check the suspension mounts and floor for rust.
Check the rear main oil seal for leakage although a small amount of seepage is normal on any car that has 100k on the clock.
Look at the suspension shackles.The closer they are to 75 degrees the better.If they are about 45 degrees the suspesion has lost its bounce and the ride will be harsh.
The brakes are big and expensive so if they are totally worn it will cost you.Feel for ridges on the discs,a maximum of 1mm and they will need to be replaced .Check for leaks in the master cyl and slave cyl .
The power steering box is also expensive so look for leaks on the base which indicates a worn sector shaft.A lot of owners have problems with fuel tank fumes so be aware of that ,not expensive just time consuming and a pita.
If a car salesman sees you checking these things he ill believe you are a real expert and will stop telling bulls@#t.
Good luck with it
there isn't very much wrong that you can find in a old 60/62 that you can't find in any other vehicle of that age. One advice that I can give you is to post you phone no. and location here so somebody can show you their cruiser and what problems they have had since they've had it. Most of us would even let you ride in the truck so you can hear the basic sounds and performance of a good running vehicle. But if you have to look for anything just look for leaks and excessive frame rust. good luck from Chicago.
Thank you all for your help, especially rosco. THanks for being so damn specific. Today I am going to look at an 84 fj60 from a Land cruiser shop north of austin, where I live, It's engine was rebuilt 6 yrs ago, brand new clutch, brakes, 30's, and small exhaust leak. I have not seen it yet, but I am alittle bit anxious about the t/case, drive train, and g/box because the fj has 240,000 miles on it. I also do not know anyhting about the brakes. i will probalby post someting after i take a look at it. I need your opinions, guys

look up the Lone Star Cruiser Club. there are a bunch of fools over there that know a s***load!!!
I'd take your time if I were you. I know that may not easy if you've got Cruiser fever like I had when I bought my 40 last year. There are a lot of con men out there. I won't mention any names, but I've heard some negative things about a guy who "restores" Cruisers in a small town just south of Austin. I bought mine from a similar shop, and have spent the last year ironing out the problems. Nothing big, and some of them the seller fixed, but it was time consuming and pretty frustrating.
I found a guy in Garland, TX that used to work at Cool Cruisers of Texas who's gone off on his own and done nothing but work on Cruisers. He's got a couple of 60s for sale. I hope he doesn't mind my giving out his name and #. It's Dung Nguyen and his cell phone is 214-972-0739.
Also, as a previous writer mentioned check out the Lone Star Land Cruisers website.
There's an Austin chapter, and I think the time and place of the monthly meetings are posted there. I know they are for the Dallas club, as are vehicles for sale. It probably wouldn't be a bad deal to buy a vehicle that 20 other guys know and can vouch for. Good Luck!
Hey Pat,

Think these guyz got you covered :D

I sold a '89 62 last year that was in excellent condition with 150k for $8500. I think I could of got more, but it was for a quick sell.

I really like the 60 and 62s, but the 62 have alot more conviences on it like the power locks, windows, and fuel injection which are all very nice. I added keyless and was loving it, having 4 doors and a latch:) But you can't go wrong with either, both sweet ass truckz.

I've seen good 62s sell from 7k to 12k(very high). Just look out fer far gone cancer/rust.

Good luck and happy huntin!
Yo Han

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