Chevota question? (1 Viewer)

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Jan 27, 2021
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Wenatchee, WA 98801
Here's a DUMB question!

Leaving next Sat to pick up my '69 FJ40 with a 350 Chevy and a 3 speed tranny. The dealer is highly rated on his restorations of classic cars (Over 400, 5 out of 5 ratings). My question is (I've never driven a V8 conversion and I am planning my trip to arrange route and motels), so how far and how long can I drive per day? I am planning a 70 mph on open roads (i.e. I-5, or HWY 395. I am currently using a 5 to 7 hour driving day. What would be reasonable figuring no problems such as blizzards, construction (I know=on I-5 or 395!)? Engine has ~ 18K on it.
 

DangerNoodle

Essentially a fire wielding monkey.
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Hell, 60 is scary in a 40 if you ever have to turn or stop quickly. 40s aren't meant to go very fast. It's loud, they aren't comfortable if you are taller than 5'9" and I can't even imagine it with a 3 speed. How much are you betting that this has been done well? Crossing wide open areas in a car that I have never driven, especially one that is old and a conversion would be pretty unnerving, for me at least. I hope you really trust the guy and that this thing is as reliable as you think.
 
Joined
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Inland Empire - California
I have a 305 in my 74 FJ40, I'm lucky to get 55mph on the highway. 50mph is reasonable for the 4.11. Definitely give yourself more time. Check all fluids, bring extra radiator fluid and check tire pressure regularly. Also make sure you bring a spare tire and some jumper cables:).
GOOD LUCK!
No better way to get acquainted with your FJ!
 
Joined
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Wenatchee, WA 98801
We're driving down in my wife's Exterra. She'll follow me back North. We have a good tool and first aid kit and have a Hi-lift to take with me. Taking blankets and food and stove--all my usual "stuff" we keep in each car. I'll re-figure for 4 days back instead of 3.

I would prefer taking my Frontier as it's fixed up a little better and has about 50 hp more. Maybe I can talk her into it (?).

Thanks all!!!!
 
Joined
Apr 9, 2015
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I would tend to agree try to stick with 60 can the exterra tow. I would rent one of those uhaul towables. I have a 350 in mine with 4 speed. I don’t over 50 or more then 30miles away The noise alone will make you tired..... good luck
 
Joined
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Wenatchee, WA 98801
Oh just from your I5 and Hwy 395 comment...I live near Republic WA and drive 395 every day to work.
Good luck on your 40 purchase and your trip...i look forward to seeing some pics once you get it home!
We head up that way to dig fossils every year. Want to hit some of the back country and ghost towns near Wauconda Pass (?).
 
Joined
Jan 27, 2021
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Wenatchee, WA 98801
Re-figuring at 55-60 mph and 4 days=about 5 hours per day. Take a gas can or two. Having a stereo installed while in LA. We'll have "walkie talkies", etc.
 

Mopdog

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Bring earplugs. My 40 with a 350 and 3 speed would do 60-65 pretty reasonably on 35’s. 55 felt way better though. Things happen fast in a tank.
 

thebigredrocker

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Man I'd just fly there. Buy supplies & tools in CA. Document your trip back on ih8mud. Wife can take pictures of your big ass grin as your driving. Plenty of helpful mudders along your route if you have troubles.
 
Joined
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I think 60-65 is perfectly fine, depending on mods. Disc brakes and newer steering parts are the key here. I can do 60-65 no for me with my 1:1 final gearing and 35‘ s. I don’t run a top, so I keep highway time below two hours. Earplugs are great idea. Have a good road trip
 

RWBeringer4x4

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I have a 40 with a 350. I’ve taken it on a couple of long (4+ hour) trips. They will do 70 mph, but it’s important to realize:

1. They are short wheelbase and old - the steering is fairly numb, even if all the components are in good shape. They don’t react fast, they’re top heavy, and they don’t have anti lock brakes. Hell, unless yours has been upgraded, it has drum brakes. You have no idea if the drums have been maintained or adjusted. Keep a lonnnggg following distance and stay in the right lane.

2. Skip the stereo install - you won’t be able to hear it - especially at highway speeds. 50-55mph is the happy spot, for both noise and fuel economy. You won’t hurt anything, mechanically, going faster but I find my knuckles getting progressively whiter between 60 and 75. Plus with a “new to me” rig I wouldn’t be listening to music, I’d be listening for what’s about to break.

3. I love road tripping in a 40, but after riding on 4 leaf springs, listening to everything rattle, and the V8 rolling at 3000rpm for 3+ hours, I’m usually glad when I reach my destination.

The good news is they only get 150 miles or so on a tank of gas so you get to take a break every couple hours.

I know the above sounds hugely pessimistic. I love my 40, enjoy driving it and wouldn’t trade it for the world but it’s important to go into this adventure with both eyes open. Cadillacs/highway cruisers they are not.
 
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Joined
Jan 9, 2020
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NorCal
I drove my V8 swapped FJ40 2 hours to get home and I was glad to get out. Not that it’s that bad, it’s just a lot of work! Loud , bumpy and constant lane corrections wear on you. Mine will do 60 easy but above that it feels like it’s getting angry.
But like others said, bring earplugs!
 

bencallaway

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Atlanta
So many neigh-sayers! I did this a couple weekends ago. Picked up a 72 with a 350 and an SM465 which is basically a 3 speed. With 31’s I was cruising 65 at 3000rpms.

It’s loud, cold, and took some getting used to but that’s obvious so I was prepared. Take some earphones so you can call your wife. Check your tire pressure. My 20 gal aux fuel tank was very nice to have. The drive took 5 hours to get there in our 200 and 5 hours to get back with the 200 chasing the 40.

I haven’t had that much fun driving since I was a valet in college and took a Ferrari home overnight. It was a freaking blast!!
 
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