Builds "Jenny" build thread - 1989 BJ74

cruiseroutfit

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Why Jenny? Why not? :D

I have a habit of nicknaming my Cruisers, easier to remember and they have personality, why not reflect it. Some come with nicknames, some earn them when we are working on them in the shop and others just seem fitting. Given the VIN of this steed (BJ74-0005309), Jenny seemed quite appropriate.

Basic Specs:
1989 JDM BJ74 LX
ARB Bullbar
ComeUp DV9 Winch
Kaymar Rear Bumper
E-Locked Axles
Wholesale Auto Valve Body
Old Man Emu Suspension
Besttop Seats

This is a "full circle" Cruiser. You can read Ben's (@theferg) side of the story here. Ben bought it though Land Cruisers Direct via Cruiser Outfitters while working part-time for us here at the shop. He did some neat upgrades to it including ditching a crummy set of aftermarket seats for modern buckets and a rear bench, adding an e-locker to the rear FF axle and replacing the front axle housing with an e-locked early 90's 7x Series model. Through our shop resources we were able to help him out with an ARB front bumper and one of the last Kaymar bumpers available here in the US. He souped it up into a neat rig that performed great both on and off the highway. I was able to spend a bit of time with him on the trail, raodtrips, etc and always love the color, trim and build of this 74. Meanwhile, my beloved Righty (1986 BJ74 Auto) as well as Project LXXIV (1988 BJ74 5spd/cable locked) had both gone to new homes, leaving me on the hunt for a new 7x. I had told myself I would hold out until LCD had the right 77 Series for me but things don't always go as planned, often in a good way. Ben's work was changing and he was commuting an hour+ each way, add his family of 6 and the 74 just wasn't a long-term solution but a GX470 was :D. We were able to work out a good trade, I would get the 74 and he would get all of the parts and labor to build out his new GX along with some $$$ to cover the difference. We were both excited to get playing with new rides.

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One of my favorite pics, LXXIV & Jenny together
 

cruiseroutfit

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Oh, @theferg I'm pretty sure you told me the matching pajama bottoms would be included with the sale?

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cruiseroutfit

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As I mentioned, Ben had scored an e-locked diff for the rear axle and a complete knuckle to knuckle housing for the front that had an electric locked high-pinion 8", same the one used in the 80 Series. Both of these were installed and ready to wire when Ben drove it here for the last time. He had also done some great legwork and picked up a 24V locker ECU and plug lead. Those combined with the new OE locker harnesses and OE locker switch & housing we offer made for super clean locker setup, they just needed to be wired and plugged in. I was able to track down a complete instrument cluster from a factory locked 70 Series (thanks again @70sguy) giving me those two gorgeous lights on the dash
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. The easy option would have been to swap complete clusters but I wanted the kilometers to match so I did some mixing and matching to end up with everything I needed and reassembled the other as a good spare.

The harness was a bit of a chore, nothing super complicated but I wanted to utilize the OE switch, have it activate the lights on the dash not just when locking (flashing light) but solid once they were fully engaged (getting a signal from the position switch in each diff) and I wanted it to look really clean. This all mandated working with the ECU rather than a simply switch/relay combo or DPDT switch. I think the end result was spot on and they work great. I did wire them to require a 4WD signal, i.e. I have to be in 4H or 4L to engage but I did bypass the speed requirement that would unlock them at higher speeds. Either is easy to change within the harness but thus far I'm happy with the operation.

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Sorting out the wiring schematic

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Those two gorgeous lights

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My new switch/ecu harness

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Modified rear harness

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Modified rear harness
 

cruiseroutfit

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With the harness and ECU installed under the dash and along the chassis, it was time to put the dash back together and go for a test drive

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The dash mid-install


I did put a new steering column cover in, they get smacked quite often by knees and crack. The color isn't an exact match but it's close enough and I can always paint it to match at a later date. We have the housings and the replacement decals available if you're also in need.

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Boo, broken.

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Color variance

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Decals

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All buttoned up
 

cruiseroutfit

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One of my Kaymar rear bumper struts had some shape too it, while I had parts coming from Kaymar I decided to add their LED telescoping worklight. The 24V fridge outlet was wired to the back cargo area with the ARB harness which will easily support the low draw of the LED light too. Just to be on the safe side I load tested the outlet both with the LED on and off, very minimal change and even the start-up load voltage was still well within the tolerances of the ARB battery protection settings.

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Testing fridge outlet load

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The new Kaymar light mounted and wired

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Light me up

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Nice & tidy
 

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In prep for Cruise Moab I did a full fluid & filter change using OE filters, Delo 400 oil and greased the suspension and slip-joints. I added a CB radio (Cobra 75WXST) and a new set of floor mats

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NMO mount antenna

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CB connector under dash

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Those sexy new floor mats

Other than that, it's simply been go out and have fun with it.

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Hanging with the fam @ Easter Jeep Safari

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Hangin with the fam @ Cruise Moab
 

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Sliders, how could I forget those. I had originally planned to take my FJ40 to Moab and sent the BJ74 to the vendor show with Bryce and the shop team. But, given the newly wired lockers I wanted to take this thing down myself but I needed some sliders and in a hurry. We have a local fab shop (Tayco Fab) that does some fantastic sliders for various Toyota platforms, generally weld-on versions in various flavors. He stopped by the shop a few weeks back and checked out this BJ74 and a BJ71 we had here sans sliders and thought he could work something up for me in a hurry. I dropped the truck off to him on a Tuesday, picked it up on a Thursday and the sliders were done at my powder-coater Monday, we installed them that afternoon and I left for Cruise Moab the following morning. Pretty quick turnaround, he's now got a customers BJ70 to do the same magic :cool:

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I've got some plans for upcoming projects, I've got a long-spline t-case input gear (we stock em :D) to install, that will soften up the standard issue "clunk" in the drivetrain. I've got an OE snorkel I'm considering installing. It's in need of new tires which might necessitate new wheels too. I'm really digging this look:

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I've got some plans for upcoming projects, I've got a long-spline t-case input gear (we stock em :D) to install, that will soften up the standard issue "clunk" in the drivetrain. I've got an OE snorkel I'm considering installing. It's in need of new tires which might necessitate new wheels too. I'm really digging this look:

View attachment 1255132
These are the same that beno got for me for the troopy. i love them
 

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I really like that look on the 70 series. Are they the same wheel as the 60 series? Back Spacing? I thought I saw somewhere in another thread that you are stocking these now? Whats a set of 5 run?

Yup, a few sets in stock at any given time:


Steel Wheel - Gray - $211.50 each
OEM Toyota Part, 4/5 required per vehicle
(16" x 6" Gray Steel Wheel w/o hub cap clips)
Part# WHL60262
Cruiser Outfitters
 

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What wheel and tire size are you running with the black wheels, they look like FJ steelies. Running spacers too?
They look like a good fit.

Yup, FJC steelies, spacers and 255/75 tires. I'll likely be going to a little different tire size shortly.
 
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Keep it going! You are inspiring me. I like your wheel choice as well. The FJC wheels aren't bad, but the 60 wheels are better IMO.

I still need to get back to you about my suspension and some other stuff...
 

cruiseroutfit

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Keep it going! You are inspiring me. I like your wheel choice as well. The FJC wheels aren't bad, but the 60 wheels are better IMO.

Agreed. It's official, I'm saving my pennies to buy a set of the 6x wheels for myself :D

I still need to get back to you about my suspension and some other stuff...

Sounds great!
 

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I am really liking the white headlight surround !! nice

Thanks.

It kinda gives it a bit of a 4x Series throwback look to my eye.
 

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Each year I sponsor & participate in an event called the RelicRun which features all 70's and older 4x4's. For the past two years we have combined the Relic Run with a newer event called the Retro Ramble which features all 80's era rigs. We spend 3-4 days traversing some of Utah's most epic terrain all while enjoying the technology and spirit of the 60's, 70's and 80's. Enter Jenny. This is actually her 2nd year at the event, Ferg brough it to last years event. My pal Troy was in town from Aussie to attend the event and the two of us led the group from Salt Lake to the Lucin Sun Tunnels across the historic Pony Express Trail. Our travels had us touring old Pony Express Station sites, caves, mines, ghost towns, earth art, air bases and hundreds of miles of dirt roads. Good times had by all!

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A portion of our group

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Camping out of the BJ74, yes that is an 80's vintage Norcold Fridge :D

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Some of the proud Cruisers in attendance :cool:



A few other pics of the event:

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