I'd been looking for a FJ60 for a little more than 3 years. We had two growing up and I loved them! Every single time I found one, it was sold by the time I called. I figured maybe I should look for an 80 or even a 70 series.
Low and behold this one popped up on OfferUp. I reached out to the owner, Daniel last Saturday. He shared that he's in the fire academy on Bainbridge Island here in Washington. This vehicle has been in his family ever since he was a child and they really wanted it to go to a good home. I let him know that I was elbows deep on a FJ40 frame off refresh and I felt like I'd be a good candidate. So we agreed that Monday would be a good day to come look at it.
The ferry ride from Edmonds to Kingston was a beautiful short boat ride in the sun.... perfect weather to check out a Land Cruiser! On the way south to Bainbridge we saw a stunning early 80s white FJ40 diesel, a good omen.
We arrived at Daniel's parents house in the afternoon and there it was, sitting in the driveway excited for it's new adventure. Daniel's dad Joel came out to greet us shortly after. Joel shared that he found the vehicle in the early 90's on a ranch on Whidbey Island with more than 2 other FJ60's. This one had been towards the back of the barn and had only 30,000 miles on it. Joel drove it on all sorts of adventures including the Sister's Rodeo in Oregon near Bend. Later it accompanied Daniel on a bunch of other fishing and camping adventures as well and I could tell it was an important member of the family to all of them.
I spent the next 30 minutes crawling all over the rig making sure it was what I wanted. It had a few bumps and bruises but those just add character and tell the story this rig lived. I noticed it had provisions for a few different CB radios and an alarm system that looked more at home in a bank than a car. Also that sweet tape deck!
Everything looked good so we took it for a spin. Everything worked out, so we agreed on a price and loaded up the factory chrome wheels and paused to record this new chapter in Falcor's life.
Thanks Daniel (left) and Joel (right) for taking such great care of this rig.
We even got a picture of my Dad and I with Joel and Daniel.
Removed a few non factory things today including about 8lbs of wires. Took roughly 4 hours.
Aftermarket cruise, 3 ham radios, bank alarm, trailer wiring with 2 hot 4ga wires going from the battery all the way to the back along the frame rail, 2 switches for who knows what, one had 6 wires on it, 4 huge circuit breakers and 8 feet of 6ga positive and negative that ran from the battery through the firewall and to the drivers side rear of the vehicle.
Some of the wires running down the frame had insulation so thin it was about to wear through right where it touched some of the brake line mounts to the frame. I'm glad it's all out.
Took it for a spin, everything factory still works but when I got home the radiator puked out of the radiator fill cap. Ordered a new cap to start.
Then I pretty much just drove the piss out of it for 20 or so miles. I hadn't taken it on much of a shake down run except driving home after purchasing it. I noticed it needs a few things...
The brakes pull hard to the left and only after about 10 hard panic style stops did the back brakes ever kick in. I'm going to do a brake job with reman calipers, new pads and wheel cylinders and see how it goes from there. I tried bleeding the brakes and nothing came out of the rear wheel cylinders so something tells me they're filled with rust or something.
It wanders a bit when the road is uneven, going over bumps and when accelerating or braking.... I've ordered some stock length shackles. I'm going to start there and see if that helps. The other steering related items seem tight and in good condition.
It also dies when braking hard.... I think that's a product of the Weber carb which I initially didn't like but it's surprisingly good. I bumped up the idle a bit and that seemed to help but it also diesels a bit when you shut it off so I'm going to check the timing.
The good news is that the radiator cap fixed the radiator puking and the new thermostat has the temp gauge right where it should be. So between those things and the tint coming off so easily, I'm going to call today a win.