How important is a flywheel anyway?

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Jul 26, 2015
So I got my Aisin clutch kit, new rear main seal and what I thought was a new flywheel all collected and staged for the inaugural clutch replacement job.

Was wrestling and cussing within 45 mins, which should have been a red flag.

The original clutch was smoked, worn to an impressive glassy smooth finish well into the rivets. No worries though, because I'm prepared with fresh new parts and a FSM.

Flywheel is in rough shape, hot spots and what looks like a small crack in the face. No worries.

Until I open my magical box of parts from Rock Auto and realize I ordered a flywheel ring gear, not a flywheel. Dunce. Well, I'll just go back to Rock Auto and order the right part. No you won't. It's not there.

I'll call every auto parts store, and the Toyota dealership and get the same predictable awkward pause as the person on the other end of the phone tells me, "looks like it's discontinued, man, I don't know what to tell you." Hmmmm.

Any ideas? I guess I could have my crappy one resurfaced anyway and hope for the best...I can't do anything with this truck as it sits here with the tranny and drivelines sprawled across the garage like a modern art exhibit. And walking around in the heat of a New Mexico summer gets decidedly less enjoyable after about, oh, 9am or so (yeah, it's my only ride). I've posted in the Wanted section as well. Monday I'll start hitting up the Cruiser parts businesses but wanted to get something moving as quickly as possible.
Holy s***. Hmmmm, gotta be one avail used? flywheel is for what exactly in the clutch system? @landcrusher909??
I tend to think its fairly important.... Just a hunch.
Or... Someone in the classified section is parting out a cruiser that would probably sell you a used flywheel. And yeah... It's kind of important haha.
Just have it machined by someone who knows how to do the step properly for a Land Cruiser. It's probably just surface cracks from heat.

New flywheel is over $500 from Mr. T. I saw some aftermarket ones a while ago, but can't find them now....
Holy s***. Hmmmm, gotta be one avail used? flywheel is for what exactly in the clutch system? @landcrusher909??
Chances are having the fly wheel resurfaced will take care of the issue. I just had one done here local under 30 bucks. I will give you a heads up on a few things I have learned. Fly wheels can be over re surfaced. Most machine shops only take off just what is needed. I had this problem and the way to check it is set the fly wheel on a couple of blocks put the fly wheel bolts in the holes then set the clutch plate over the fly wheel just like it would sit as if you were bolting up the pressure plate. Rotate the clutch plate there should be no resistance from hitting the bolts. Yes I have had this happen. Chances are yours is fine just have it machined and check like I mentioned
there should be a .020" step on a properly surfaced flywheel. make sure the grinder operator knows the right specs.
Did regard my rant about checking the fly wheel I just saw your post in the wanted section You working on a 4 speed, The about is for checking a 3 speed fly wheel. I have some here if yours does not work out.
For reference, here's what mine looked like when I did the clutch a few months ago and it cleaned up just fine. As others have said, make sure you get the 0.020" step cut in it. This one didn't have it (PO, not me :)) and the clutch only lasted about 60k.

Awesome, thanks for the info. I'm taking it in Tuesday to see if it can be resurfaced. Just for clarification, can someone explain what the "step" is - not familiar.
The "step" is between the wear surface and the mounting surface for the clutch cover. If you look at the picture I posted above, you can see fresh cut material from the OD of the flywheel in about 1". That's the mounting surface for the clutch cover. It should be recessed 0.020" below the wear surface (the buggered part). If you don't have the step, the pressure that the clutch cover puts on the disk will be too low and it'll wear quickly (at least that was my experience). Unfortunately, I didn't snap a pic of my flywheel with the step in it.

The diameter of the wear surface on the flywheel should match the diameter of the clutch disk and the wear surface on the clutch cover. If your flywheel doesn't have the step, take your new clutch disk and clutch cover to the shop that does the resurfacing so they have something to work from.
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"Step" is visible here:

i can almost guarantee you that any used flywheel is going to be heat checked as well.
the other lesson here is to take inventory before you are actually starting the project.
^ Absolutely. And to add insult to injury, I received the boxes and had them sitting around, unopened, for about 2 weeks prior to starting this job - plenty of time to verify what I had (or didn't) and figure out what was up. Believe me, I thought about that more than once as I sat there staring at the ring gear thinking, "What the hell is this thing???"

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