I was BEYOND excited to tell you guys BUT...

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May 10, 2013
Evansville, IN
Let me start out by saying, FORGIVE me if it seems like I'm rambling but here it goes. I own a 89' FJ62, love it! I Wasn't planning on doing much overhauling at all because I purchased it in very good condition. HOWEVER, I started seeing pictures and restorations of Fj40's and I LOST MY MIND!!!!! I knew one day I would have to have one!! Fast forward a few years later; I'm riding down the street last week and what do I see parked on the side of the road with a For Sale sign: a 74' FJ40. It's rough, it runs BUT it's rough. I immediately made calls to my uncle(my mechanic) and the owner so we could go by to see it. My uncle told me, the frame is solid, BUT you have a lot of work to do. No problem, I knew that. I have a 3 year old son and I have always wanted to restore an FJ40, taking him camping and fishing via our FJ and that be "our father/son tradition". OK, I was ANXIOUS, I took a full picture of the title & I went directly to the county clerks office. They said, it's a clear title, it is a 1974 Toyota Landcruiser. GREAT!! I checked under the hood, there is a sticker from the Toyota Manufacture, it's so old you can only read about 75% of what's there. I would love to look for any verification on the inside of the driver's door BUT they have been replaced with aftermarket doors, as well as the engine. To myself I thought, no big deal, I will find doors and I'm putting another engine/transmission in anyway. I check the front right side of frame for the infamous "NUMBER". I locate a # BUT I'm not to sure how to read it, it's upside down(there are a couple I CANNOT see BUT I did make out 304-60080). Again the county clerk's office shows registration back to 1985 with a few different owners. The glovebox has old insurance cards that have it registered with the VIN# BUT I don't know how to locate any other "INFAMOUS NUMBERS" to verify the vehicle. Besides the vehicle being in ROUGH shape, I'm just trying to make sure that I didn't buy an a fraud?? Again, I KNEW it was going to be lots of work to restore it(that was going to be the fun part for me to do and be able to show my son later), so that isn't the issue. I just want to be able to be AUTHENTIC like the rest of you guys lol. Anyone who doesn't mind sharing info with this newbie or sending me a email address I will send you pics of my FJ. I was SUPER PUMPED to post this thread for you guys to read BUT when I couldn't locate the vin#, I became worried. Thank you for taking out the time to read this, I truly appreciate that and any advice you can throw my way!
Also, when I look at pictures of my FJ, the gas door is closer to the passenger door on the qtr panel opposed to some pictures that show the gas door further back?
Hey man,

Welcome aboard. I'll be the first to warn you that if you call it an FJ around here (instead of a 40) people will yell at you. :flipoff2:

Regarding the VIN Number - they're a little different on these trucks, it's not the modern 16-digit code. It's 12 (or something like that) and I believe it will start with FJ40. I'm not an expert on these things, though, so I will let someone else clue you in further.

What are your plans for the engine and transmission?

Regarding the fuel door - it depends on where your fuel tank is located. My fuel door is behind the passenger door, like yours, because our fuel tanks are located under the passenger seat. Later year models (I think 1978 and up) had the gas tank relocated under the back bed of the truck, and therefore, the fuel door moved back as well. People also sometimes relocated the fuel tanks to the back, or installed auxiliary tanks, so sometimes you'll even see two fuel doors. Sounds like yours, however, is in the stock location.

Here is a shot of mine from the side for reference. It's a 75, so only a year newer than the one you're looking at...You can also see where the PO drilled a hole in the quarter panel to install an aux tank, and never finished...

Also - Post of pictures of your find ASAP!
Clutertruck Side View.jpg
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There should be two plates. One is riveted to the A pillar on the driver side door frame (not the door). the other is located in the engine compartment on the passenger side, either riveted to the inside of the fender or to the firewall behind/above the blower motor. The older VIN#s started with FJ40-XXXXXX. they do not conform to modern VIN# formats (not enough characters).

The OEM fuel filler is located just behind the passenger door. Those filler necks that are located near the back corner of the quarter panel are for aftermarket tanks that fit between the frame rails in the rear behind/above the rear axle. A number of owners of the earlier FJ40s have moved the fuel tank to the rear to get it out of the passenger compartment. Some also patched over where the OEM filler was located to give it a cleaner look.
Post some pics and let us chew on it before you buy it. The incredible minds here will tell you what you need to know but pictures or it didn't happen. welcome :flipoff2:
Your fuel door should look just like the white one above; that's how it was from '73-'78. In '79 when the tank was moved out of the cab it became a square about 5"x 5". The vin did not become 16 digit in America until I believe '81, so until 1980 they all began with fj40-xxxxxx.
With pics we can give you more thoughts.
Well, at least you have the forum as a resource. Have fun with it!
Congratulations !! Looks good, I thought you said it was rough ! Let us know what your plans are for it.:cheers:
bezel's upside down ;)
no wipers - I guess it's gonna be a perfect weather truck then ;p

but the front bumper is relatively new

looks like the rear sill has already been removed for you - that's great, because now it can't rust any further :hillbilly:

good luck :cheers:
Looks great ! It seems the tires have the right airpressure :eek:, congrats and good luck !
The vin should be on the right hand front frame rail just behind the bumper bar. There should be a two vin plates riveted to the body shell under the bonnet on the firewall.

I think its looks great and hopefully there's no or not much rust under the paint.
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In the first post you made you said "it runs"

1) was there somebody in the engine compartment making vrummm vrummm sounds?
2) it wil get great mpg as is ... You will need a hill to get going however

bezel's upside down ;)


Why hasn't anyone mentioned that the doors are all from later than '73 or '74? Those with the top make it look like a '75.
you can see on the third pic that the doors provide custom ventilation :hillbilly:

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