Disputing the myth

Jan 30, 2003
I really enjoy reading my TT magazine especially the Cruiser Musings. But this time I find myself shocked at Ross Lake's description of the FJ25 as junk.
First of all if it's junk I'll be happy to haul it away because the true fact of the matter is that the Fj25 is a valuable piece of Land Cruiser history. Let's not forget that the 25 was the first Land Cruiser to be sold in this country.

I must agree that there have been several times I've looked at my FJ25 and thought what a bad-ass looking rock crawler it would make. Imagine that unique body on top of Dana 60s, 37" MTRs, powered by a SB Chevy V8, not to mention a wicked roll cage :eek: Yeah it'd be cool but it wouldn't be a Cruiser anymore.

What makes the 25 cool is that, like Ross said, everything is completely un-obtainable...IT'S TOTALLY RARE !
If it wasn't for the few people who placed value in these old rare beasts there just wouldn't be any. It be a dead issue. I guess it's a matter of simply appreciating the Land Cruiser for what it is.

It is a challenge to attempt to restore one, and it's pride of ownership that keeps it going. Sorry Ross, but I totally disagree with your opinion. I think a 25 should be kept stock.

If I want to modify somthing I'll do it to my FJ40, there's lots of those around :)
Dec 23, 2002
thanks Reddog, we value your opinion.

And I certainly will not try to clarify or explain Ross' thoughts.

But my 64 FJ45 is very hard to drive in it's stock configuration.
Feb 25, 2002
Glad to see my Cruiser Musings articles stirring up a few emotions. I love hearing feedback, especially any thoughts or ideas that help me write the next column. So keep them coming!

Restoring an FJ25 is a labor of love. And at the end of the process, you end up with a 1950s era truck. There is a mid ground between the two extremes (the 100% stock 25, and the extreme built rock crawler 25). That is the FJ25 built with 1976-1983 FJ40 running gear. You end up with a truck that looks like a 25, but has the road manners of a 20 year newer cruiser. And that is the way I would "restore" mine. I would rather have something that I could drive and enjoy, than a museum peice. And a 25 with disc brakes, a fresh 2F, 4 or 5 speed, split case, fine spline axles and pinions, power steering etc etc etc would allow me to enjoy the truck.

I have nothing but the greatest respect for people who go through the trauma of restoring an FJ25 to stock condition. It is just not my cup of tea. I don't have the patience to put $$$ and hours into a truck, and end up with a undrivable cruiser.

Thanks for the input, Reddog.


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