My new '79 FJ40 build thread

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Oct 4, 2008
Hello all. I am new to the 40 but have had Cruisers for the last 9 years.

I'm really excited about bringing this survivor back to original specs.

I realize that alot, rather most original parts are no longer available new but I would like to get it back to as original as possible.

With that being said, your comments would be appreciated and help me get this 40 repaired correctly.

It's an early '79 with a Feb. build date with factory Power Steering and a currently inoperative Nippon Denso factory installed Air Conditioning.

As far as I can tell, it was originally sold new in Graham, WA and I am the 5th owner. It had 67,000 on the 5 digit odometer so I am guessing that it had 167,000 miles on it. It certainly doesnt look like 267,000 but I may be wrong. ( I have been many times before.)

I have already removed an aftermarket tape deck, speakers and all associated wires. Three wire tapped wires under the dash were heat shrinked and rewrapped with electrical tape. I was happy to find the original, un-molested radio 12V +/- plug & speaker plug behind the dash. Now I need to find a 1979 radio to install.
* Edit - Radio found & installed.

I'd also like to replace the front bumper with an original bumper as this one was modified by a previous owner to be flat towed. Thus the 2" receivers that are incorporated into the factory bumper.
* Edit - Bought a new factory bumper but was hesitant to cut it up in order to lower the winch with the @powthief winch support bracket (see page 5).

Tomorrow I will be picking up alot of parts from my local Toyota as they support our local LC Club, ONSC.

Parts include;
Carb to air cleaner gasket, thermostat and gasket, red coolant, brake pads and shoes, oil filter, air cleaner and new u-joints.

However, I am in need of this vacuum valve for the distributor (pic from another 1979). Does any one know of a suitable replacement? This one is supposedly discontinued.

*Edit - City Racer has these valves for sale on his website. They are they superceeded part number and are blue and black. Not original color but functionality is the same.

I am looking for a couple of other parts to complete this 40.
They are;
- the AC lines and evaporator firewall grommets
*Edit- AC lines firewall grommets found. I'll add part numbers later.
- AC condensor
- Radiator (for factory AC)
- AC idle up solenoid
*Edit-early 40 ND AC didn't have the idle-up solenoid like the later 40'a and 60's did. The idle RPM was set 100rpm higher than non-AC 40's.
If any of you have these and would like to sell, please post up!

Thanks and I look forward to posting more progress shots.

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Great looking ‘79! Makes me eager to complete some rust repairs on mine. Post your vin number as I’m a Feb ‘79 as well.

Oh and your post about the seat extensions: I’m not sure those were a kit or just built by the PO.

Love that you’re keeping it stock! Wish I had back when I first got mine.
I can't say enough about the vendors here on MUD that I have used to source parts I was in search of.
beno orangefj45
Racer65 Wadesters and many individuals that shared advice and sold me a part here and there. Some even from the land down under. Make a list based on your priorities stick to it but don't miss out on an opportunity if it arises. Good luck. Following
You are going to be very surprised how many parts are available. Many OEM, some refurbs, some used, and many very reproductions. Besides the vendors and the for sale/wanted listings on this site be sure to look on eBay. '79 is a sweet year for parts.
Hi, One of our 40s is a 1979 March. For ac lines I'd have them made at a good hydraulic hose shop. The radios back then from the factory were just average, speakers poor and their placement worse. I'm going with a delete plate,aftermarket radio ,Polk speakers mounted to the roll bar. The Polks will drown out the road noise. Have fun. Mike
Nice 40! Surely you’re not ditching the 8274?
Hi, One of our 40s is a 1979 March. For ac lines I'd have them made at a good hydraulic hose shop. The radios back then from the factory were just average, speakers poor and their placement worse. I'm going with a delete plate,aftermarket radio ,Polk speakers mounted to the roll bar. The Polks will drown out the road noise. Have fun. Mike

Thanks for the tip on the A/C lines!

I've got a bluetooth speaker with an internal battery that fits in the console almost perfectly. I'll use that for music.
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That is going on my next 40. This one will be a time capsule. My next one will be modified a bit, actually alot!

If I can find an OE electric winch, that could find its way onto it....
Well it looks like that 8274 was an option! See number 19 in the pic below Cool!

Busy day with the 40 today;
- fixed the heater temp controller today.
I used a hydraulic crimp with 8AWG dies to re- crimp the plunger assembly to the cable housing.
- fixed the loose fresh air cable assembly. Luckily the retaining nut had just came loose and was wedged behind the heater.
- removed the coolant and overflow bottle and throughly cleaned them up and the surrounding area.
- confirmed washer switch works. Flushed washer hoses out and discovered that the metal tube in the windshield frame had already been bypassed with OE tubing :)
- discovered washer pump rusted and inop. :( Bought a generic replacement. O *edit - generic pump did not fit washer bottle hole
- removed air cleaner assembly, removed rust, primed and painted
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No progress by me this week as I am still awaiting the exhaust to be finished... found a couple of leaks and a clogged cat. Reusing the stock muffler, heat shields and hangar as they were in good shape.

Hopefully it will be done this week.

Here's a driveway pose from last week though as well as the work in progress exhaust.

In the meanwhile, I searched Mud and the Webs but have not been able to find an answer to this, so would anyone happen to know the Toyota or Denso part number and a source for the post cat air temp probe?

Also, my windshield washer pump on the '79 is shot. It was all rusted up so I soaked it in vinegar and cleaned the surface rust off, partly dismantled and manually rotated the gear posts until they were a "crunchy" free. I then cleaned it up and applied 12v. It moves but not enough to push the washer fluid. Is it worth dismantling again and attempting to repair or overhaul? I'm leaning that way right now as I can't seem to find a replacement for it anywhere. This pump has the nozzle built into it NOT on the washer bottle as other years had. I have read that the part is NLA but does anyone know of a source for a new or working washer pump?

I'd prefer to not have replace a perfectly good bottle and wiring harness plug to run the other earlier type that has the nozzle on the bottle.


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