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Decisions, decisions

Discussion in '40- & 55-Series Tech' started by ozarkcruiser, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. ozarkcruiser

    ozarkcruiser

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    Ok I am in the process of restoring a 72 FJ-40 that is in need of some serious attention. If you haven't noticed from some of my other posts and ???, I am learning as I go. Let me toss out my plan for the project and then talk about what can be avoided till more funds/skill appear. I will include some pics of the progress that has been made.

    1. I have planned on having the frame blasted and powdercoated for about $250
    2. Saginaw PS, with the plates welded to frame prior to powdercoating. $A lot
    3. Drop a 97 4.3 vortec in the cruiser to a toy 4spdtranny and 3 spd case.
    4. Lift it 2-4"
    5. Body panel repairs, specifically door sills, DS toolbox, and rear quater panels.
    6. spray bedliner under tub and in tub. $900 Thinking about durabaking myself.
    7 different seats
    8. Family cage $400
    Now I have learned alot on this forum, FSM, and general tinkering. I am learning to weld at the fire station, and I have the option to rent a spray booth for ~$100 for a weekend. I know for a fact that I would have trouble putting the engine in myself. I am trying to save money where possible so I am thinking about using a Zero-Rust/POR-15 product on the frame myself, Durabaking the tub myself, and painting it myself. I am not comfortable with the bodywork, so I am tossing the idea around to have a friend weld in good metal then cover with black diamond plating since my color choice is freeborn red. I have a deal worked out with a local cruiser guy where we swapped labor, me on his rental houses and him on the cruiser. Problem is the work is done on my end so I need to pick and choose how I have him work on mine. Sorry about the ramble, just feeling a little helpless and a ways away from driving my cruiser. Here are some pics for you to toss in someinput.
    Day I got her.
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
    Tub
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
    Frame
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
     
  2. ozarkcruiser

    ozarkcruiser

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    Powersteering plates
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]
     
  3. theo

    theo

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    I think you should seriously consider using an FJ40 drivetrain. "Dropping a Vortec in" will cost you several weeks at least and several THOUSAND dollars more. The v8 conversion is common but it still takes a lot of work, especially with modern fuel injection. It takes some extra skills too. :)
     
  4. ozarkcruiser

    ozarkcruiser

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    I agree, I have $400 in the engine, and $100 in the AA belhousing already. I planned on the local cruiser guy to do the engine.
    Jake
     
  5. FLFJ40

    FLFJ40

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    I third the motion on adding a vortec, by the way you are doing a rebuild not a restoration, restoration takes it back to the factory condition. If you are on a budget rebuild I would stick with the F engine. You can have the F rebuilt professionally way cheaper than you could get a Vortec. Even if you get a used vortec, what is the condition going to be like? If you rebuild the F, you will know from day one how you have mantianed it and weather or not it has been ragged out.
     
  6. DSRTRDR

    DSRTRDR I can mangle anything ... SILVER Star

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    let me know when you abandon the stock steering box, I am interested. Claudia
     
  7. ozarkcruiser

    ozarkcruiser

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    Its already out, you need it?
    Jake
     
  8. REZARF

    REZARF

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    Jake-

    I dont know what kind of time you have. But one way to save a ton on the body work is to enroll in your local technical college auto body class. With a few nights a week, access to all the tools needed to do the work, welders, spot welders and hammers, DA sanders, spray booths etc, not to mention the instructors advice and skills at your disposal.

    I paid 175 for a class, and painted an old camaro using the schools stuff for another 300. All in all, I saved at least 1000 on a first class paint job. I did all the work, and my professor sprayed my final coats so I didnt jack it up.

    As for your drivetrain, if you have the money, I would vote for the vortec and a nv4500 or other 5 speed, with gas prices out there, you would be better off down the road. The initial costs and labor is what make it prohibitive.

    I think the blast and powder coat sounds like a good deal for the frame, POR will cost you in time and mess. Durabak should save you some cash too.

    Best of luck, keep us updated.

    Rezarf <><
     
  9. sonoranfun

    sonoranfun

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    Man, if you can, get the F or F2 out of the picture. I have one with a SBC and one with an F2 and while I like the F2 more you can get an SBC on eBay all day long for $500 in good running order. If both motors on mine blew tomorrow it would be a month before I was in the F2 driving and I'll bet close to $2,000, for the SBC I'd just toss the old motor put in a new one and I'd be on the road this weekend for $500 or less. While it may cost you more at first I'd rather have the SBC, however for me I'd take a late 60s early 70s SBC over a newer vortec...
     
  10. ozarkcruiser

    ozarkcruiser

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    Man that is a great idea on the tech college course on autobody. Like I said earlier the I got the running vortec for $400 dollars with the computer, manifolds, and all the pumps and accessories. The motor was already wired for a manual so I have been told that is easier to swap. I got a smoking deal for the bellhousing and a 4 spd tranny. I would love a 5 spd but cant swing the nv4500 right now. I am moving foward on the powdercoating of the frame and will decide later on the durabak. I plan on sitting right there and handing my local crusier guy the tools he needs so I can watch and learn. The labor is covered with our trade out initially till we even out on swapped labor, so the motor swap should be covered. What do you think is a fair estimate on putting the motor in after the mounts are already welded in place? Thanks for the replies.
    Jake