How far can the FZJ80 go without oil?

Joined
Dec 21, 2021
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Semmes, AL
I've always been curious about this. I figure you cruiser heads will have the answers. The details are as follows:
-I purchased the 1997 LC in 2002. In 2015 daughter #3 was using it as a daily driver. We live in Mobile, AL and she was attending college in Tallahassee FL which is about 240 miles away.
-Cruiser was taken in for oil change at (Mobile, AL) business on 8/11/2015 with 186,168 mileage.
-In April of 2016 (Tallahassee) with 192,104 mileage, the truck started knocking badly and stalled. #3 managed to re-start after a few minutes and drove about 5 miles to her apartment and parked it. (I know- 1000 miles past due on the oil change)!
-I had the truck towed to a local Tallahassee repair shop and the mechanic said there was no oil in the engine. He pulled the oil pan and said it was bone dry and that he'd never seen an oil pan completely dry. He said there were no signs of an oil leak on the engine nor could I find any signs of a major oil spill in her parking lot.
-I would estimate #3 made at least 4 round trips between home and college with the rest of mileage being local.
- So... is it possible that at the 186,168 mile oil change, they didn't refill the oil and the cruiser traveled 6k miles without oil? OR, did the engine consume 7-8 quarts of oil?
FWIW-I started to junk it but decided to let the repair shop install a reman engine. It's no longer a daily driver but I still have it and after about 30k on the reman it still runs great.
 
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6k seems like a lot but in the one case that I witnessed I was surprised at how long engines can go with no oil.

That case was a friend of mine with a Nissan v6 mini van. Wife went to have the oil changed and they dumped the oil, replaced the filter but didn't replace the oil. A few days later and multiple trips from town to their house up the mountain which is a 15-20 minute drive and I ran into them and commented on their engine noise. It was rattling and sounded like it had a lot of loose lifters. When I checked the oil it was empty and when I pulled the drain plug nothing came out. We filled the engine and they drove it for a few years with no issues before selling it on. I'd guess they drove it 60 to 150 miles in those few days!
 
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Marana, AZ
It would be interesting to see the engines that seem to keep going without oil after a tear down. It can't be good inside.

There was a mine maintenance superintendent that used to brag about how many hours he could get out of his equipment. What he never mentioned was that he ran them to failure. His rebuilds were very expensive compared to other companies that had planned maintenance with scheduled oil sampling.

The engine I mentioned with almost instant failure without oil was a Cummins KTA2300 in a haul truck. It had assembly lube when it was built but they go to dyno before being shipped. They get shipped without oil. The mine mechanics installed it, started it (without oil) and while checking for leaks at idle it made some ugly noises and lost oil pressure. It got pulled and shipped back to get repaired. Fortunately just a crank and bearings I think.

I've personally spun a rod bearing because of low oil and my son that can break a ball bearing while in a rubber room has blown up stuff faster than I could fix them. More than once I've seen the oil trail off to the shoulder of the road when I get told, "I was just driving along and this happened." Lol


So I guess I should clarify. In my personal experience, I have never been the lucky guy people hear about on the internet that can keep going without oil, or coolant actually. I'm not saying it never happens. It's just unlikely and it never happens to me.
 

surfpig

The Anti-Tech
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Here. Now.
Until it stops.
 
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He was joking, the engine needs the correct amount of oil and a good oil filter to survive. Never use a Wix or a no-name oil filter that some quick lube shops install.

Can't go wrong with a Toyota oil filter.
 
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Marana, AZ
Sorry, I was definitely kidding around. That guy spent $800 and wasted an engine to................I'm not sure. Show that Toyota is tough? The additive works? I thought it was funny to bring it in to the shop. I don't know what the heck I would have thought if a customer did that to me. I did have a guy at the mine drive a motor grader out of the pit to the shop with a rod out the side of the block because his A/C quit working. He didn't know the engine had an "issue". He was just hot.

I also use Toyota filters.
 
Joined
Dec 21, 2021
Messages
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Location
Semmes, AL
Sorry, I was definitely kidding around. That guy spent $800 and wasted an engine to................I'm not sure. Show that Toyota is tough? The additive works? I thought it was funny to bring it in to the shop. I don't know what the heck I would have thought if a customer did that to me. I did have a guy at the mine drive a motor grader out of the pit to the shop with a rod out the side of the block because his A/C quit working. He didn't know the engine had an "issue". He was just hot.

I also use Toyota filters.
Sorry, I was definitely kidding around. That guy spent $800 and wasted an engine to................I'm not sure. Show that Toyota is tough? The additive works? I thought it was funny to bring it in to the shop. I don't know what the heck I would have thought if a customer did that to me. I did have a guy at the mine drive a motor grader out of the pit to the shop with a rod out the side of the block because his A/C quit working. He didn't know the engine had an "issue". He was just hot.

I also use Toyota filters.
No worries. I was poking back at you. I don't believe to much in additives. Good advice on the oil filters. I'd read that the cheap filters the lube places use are inferior to the OEM filters.
 
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About 5 minutes, don’t watch this video if you have a weak stomach.
That's sad, but the rules for the Cash for Clunkers program requires that they 1) drain all the engine oil, 2) add sodium silicate, and 3) run the engine at max RPMs until it seizes.

Sodium silicate ("liquid glass") is the same chemical that you'll find in those clear "head gasket fix" bottles. At around 200 degrees, it precipitates. When it's in your cooling system, it seals your head gasket leak. When it's in your crankcase, it rapidly destroys every bearing and locks up the engine.
 
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A relative of my wifes was helping us move her grandmother with his 22RE Toyota pickup. On about the third trip 12 mile round trip, I heard clattering when he pulled up. While we were moving stuff I mentioned it. He was proud that he'd changed his own oil the night before and put that teflon additive in it popular 30 years ago when this happened. I suggested he check his oil anyhow. Empty and missing drain plug. He'd forgotten to tighten it. Later he found the gravel where he parked soaked with fresh oil. So he drove 10 minutes to get there, then perhaps 3 ten minute trips with a cooldown length stop on each end. I drove him to get a drain plug and oil and we refilled it. Last I knew, he still has the truck and it's never missed a beat. I think the teflon may have coincidentally saved his bearings.
 

77mustard40

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Ask me how I know…. 20 plus years ago my DD was a 93 unlocked FZJ80 with a cloth interior, great truck. I’d moved to Austin after a divorce and purchased a Tundra for work and gave my 80 to my youngest daughter. As @Kernal mentioned I spent a couple of hours with her going through the truck and showing her how to check fluids along with other common issues such as changing a tire. Over time, every time I saw the truck I found a new mark or small dent, I’d inquire and it was always some exotic tale as to the origin of my observed changes. Some two years or so later news came that the truck no longer ran, turns out she had run it dry and seized the motor from oil starvation. This didn’t make sense to me as I didn’t recall it burning or dripping oil in a significant way. I flew out to assess the damage and the condition of her parking space in the drive told the story, oil leaks and neglect led to its demise.

Lesson, never give a teenager a vehicle you are not willing to see waisted, be it lack of maintenance or lack of driving experience. I have no idea how long the motor was hanging on for dear life, but no oil equals no motor.
 

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