New guy. Need some educated opinions (1 Viewer)

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Hope this is in the right section. Owned a 67 fj40 years ago. Great rig. Wife recently inherited a 78 fj40 from her dad. We live on a ranch high up in the mountains in eastern AZ. She wants it for her daily driver. Cleaned rat nests for a couple days. Got it started a couple days ago. Tank was bad. Ordered a plastic tank, carb kit, other stuff. Should drive it next week. Anyway plan on spending a substantial pile getting it road worthy. Paint, interior, new ac, all that. Also want to run 33’s and need lift opinions and info. Some kits are considerably less than others. From past experience rough country and skyjacker and others ride very rough. Would like to stay away from bone shaking. Read about old man and hfs. Anyway, you guys know more than me. Help an old cowboy out. Would like to be able to go 65 on the highway and have good steering and control and still keep my teeth in off road. Don’t plan on jumping anything but there are some rough roads in this country. Any info would be appreciated.
 
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Thanks for the quick replies. Will I need to move shackles, replace steering arm or have any drive shaft issues? Any other things to think about? Don’t plan on a rotisserie rebuild but when I install the lift I want to have everything there and do a lot of cleaning and repainting underneath. I’ve read some spooky stories about steering and handling problems after a lift. Thanks
 

Jdc1

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Akron, OH
Thanks for the quick replies. Will I need to move shackles, replace steering arm or have any drive shaft issues? Any other things to think about? Don’t plan on a rotisserie rebuild but when I install the lift I want to have everything there and do a lot of cleaning and repainting underneath. I’ve read some spooky stories about steering and handling problems after a lift. Thanks
You’ll probably want to add some steel castor shims. the vendor(highly recommend Cruiser Outfitters or Valley Hybrids) can help you pick the right ones.

Edit to add, rebuild knuckles, tre and center arms will help a lot too.
 

John Smith

In the garage
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Thanks for the quick replies. Will I need to move shackles, replace steering arm or have any drive shaft issues? Any other things to think about? Don’t plan on a rotisserie rebuild but when I install the lift I want to have everything there and do a lot of cleaning and repainting underneath. I’ve read some spooky stories about steering and handling problems after a lift. Thanks

Most all spooky handling issues are due to people installing longer shackles and not installing caster shims to correct for the additional length. I would procure a metal tank and skip the plastic one, or try to repair your current tank. Please post some pictures of your 78. Be aware, that depending on originality and condition of your 78 FJ40, you may not want to repaint or alter the truck very much. In recent years, stock original trucks are demanding crazy prices not seen before. The 78 year model is very desirable,
 
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It was originally bought by a huge copper mine in this area and driven very little. Has less than 6k miles on it now. Her dad drove it very little. Been sitting for about 15 years. We have packrats here and they had their way with it. Under the hood was a solid nest. Glove box had a year supply of mesquite beans in it. The mine painted it some really ugly flat acrylic red color before ever driving it. It was originally olive in color. Body has a couple rust spots. And the floorboard at the gas pedal has some rust that needs repaired. A lot of the red on the fenders rubbed off while working on it. A friend who is a very good body man thinks it will all buff off to the original paint. Has 2 pushed in places. One in the passenger door and one in the rear quarter panel driver side. He said they can be removed without damaging the paint. Has a rear heater and ac. Don’t think ac is factory but don’t know how to tell. I think it’s a rare find and the majority of the damage has been from sitting outside it’s entire life. Seat tank was horrible. Got water in it somehow. I’ll try to get it cleaned but will install the plastic one now to get it driving. It has an aux tank between frame rails at the rear. Also has a radio. Only rat damage to the wires was to the ac. I think it’s a kind of rare find. Wish he’d have sold it to us 20 years ago. All the rust is from sitting out. If we can salvage the original paint minus the few rust repairs it’ll be a big plus. The interior is the original olive color. Any opinions and advice is appreciated. Fj’s are basic,simple tough built rigs. That’s the beauty of them. I’m not worried about doing the work. Just don’t want to go down any wrong roads. Wife is excited about it being her new car.
 

Ming89FJ62

Pig farmer extraordinaire
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we need photos or the truck simply doesn't exist....and welcome to mud :flipoff2: (official mud salute) Welcome back to the insanity
 
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Sounds like you're thinking all the right thoughts - preserve, get it running, enjoy it. The more slapdash the repaint, the more likely you can get it off and salvage the original paint underneath.
 
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Here’s the only photo I have with me. 🖕🏽

2E1FC35B-D3A9-4BDB-B0E2-EF291AF8333F.jpeg
 

micruz60

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As stated, welcome to the Mudness, you will have a fun time with the 40- do not call it an FJ, that's for some other vehicull.

I regret having replaced the steel fuel tank with a plastic one, waaay back in 1999, lesson learned.
Going to 33's is going to require the shims, and possibly clocking the front / rear differentials to line up the driveshafts to the transfer (dependent on lift)
Definitely rebuild the front axle, knuckles and steering components, replace/repair brakes.
There was a factory A/C offered, and you will probably appreciate it working, but if it is trashed/inoperable, might be best to remove it.

Have fun, and drive it a lot!
 
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What’s wrong with a plastic tank?
There are so few miles on it I kinda doubt the knuckles are bad. Just yanking around on things I couldn’t get anything to move. Will open up the punkins and clean the diffs up, replace the gear oil. I’ll clean the steel tank but I doubt it’ll be one to use. It’s really rough. Haven’t checked the aux tank yet.
How do I tell if it’s factory ac? What’s a good unit to replace it with?
Should I entertain a Weber carb? I’ve read good and bad.
Also, there is a fan on the firewall, drivers side. Has an open ended 90 degree sweep that seems like its pointed at the carb? Is this to stop vapor lock?
 

micruz60

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That's a carb cooling fan, yes, for vapor lock issues, it is designed to run for 15-20 minutes after engine shutdown (after reaching operating temps).

I may have gotten a crummy plastic tank, it was always over-pressured, and I did verify that the breather at cap as well as the venting system was working, just a gassy smell in the cab all the time. My steel tank had pinhole rust, and if I had known what I know now, I would have repaired it.

@GA Architect has the factory A/C? And can help verify if yours is factory.

If you can drive it for a thirty-forty mile jaunt to get the front axle fluids warm, then see if the hubs are loose, maybe just top up the knuckles with grease. Is there evidence of weeping on the inner side of the knuckles? (birf soup)
Mostly just giving you preventive maintenance guidance. . . Also get the front axle up off the ground on jackstands and then pull on the wheel at 3-9 o'clock as well as at 12-6 o'clock, to get a sense of the wheel and trunnion bearings looseness. If it was driven for mining work, I'm sure it was beatered.
HTH
 
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More great info. Thanks a lot.
My wife’s new z71 and my ol’ Cummins dodge always have a gassy smell too. I think it has a lot to do with diet.
We live off grid 40 miles from the nearest town. The cruiser is sitting about 90 miles away on a little farm my wife owns. Whenever parts come in we go there for a few days to work on it. After it is drivable it’s going to a guys shop with a lift and lots of tools to get it dependable enough to bring home. Will get it up here in the mts and work on lights, window channel, body rust, clean out the roofing tar junk they poured in the floorboards and all that kinda stuff. Drive it a bunch and work out the kinks. Then back to town for paint and interior.
I’ll figure out the gas tank. As much as it’s gonna cost another few hundred for a steel tank ain’t a big deal. Maybe I’ll hafta use the vapor lock fan to degas the interior. I’m just getting started so I’m sure there will be some trial and error. I’ll go through everything. When things sit a long time you get a sulphuric acid build up in some oils and cause bearing failure. Hope I don’t see any of that.
It only had 2500 miles when he bought it in the early 90’s. Even at the mine that ain’t enough time to hurt it too bad. It’s nice and tight. As soon as I get it running dependable the first thing then is a lift. Will go through the diffs, wheel bearings, u joints, etc then. I know where there’s an old Nissan patrol. You guys know where I can an adapter to put the engine in this 40?
 

micruz60

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Hey now, don't go givin' up on the 2F engine. . .

Yeah, if it sat for soo long, I would remove and replace the greases and oils, then once it's running, the new oils and grease will act as a detergent and 'clean' the wear surfaces.
 
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Hey now, don't go givin' up on the 2F engine. . .

Yeah, if it sat for soo long, I would remove and replace the greases and oils, then once it's running, the new oils and grease will act as a detergent and 'clean' the wear surfaces.
I was kinda joshin’ about the datsun engine. Figured it was a bigger sin than a gm smallblock
 

micruz60

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I was kinda joshin’ about the datsun engine. Figured it was a bigger sin than a gm smallblock

Well, it IS Japanese, sooo, not as bad as Chevota.

Good call on the Rotella, I've been using the T4 15w-40 for about six years now, and just picked up two gallons today for the spring oil change on my 60, along with some Lucas ZDDP.
 

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