Newbie 4x4 Help on my FJ80

Joined
Sep 14, 2021
Messages
13
Location
Ecuador, South America
Dear Friends,

Good morning. Today I got my hands on my FZJ80 I purchased this week, and managed to take it out for a drive. Its a 1993, Japaneese Model, 4.5, Gas, Stick Shift, 345,000KM and engine was overhauled 2,000KM Ago. It's got a few nice things, 4:88 Gears, Mickey Thompson Mud Tires, Some Luminator Hellas, a Dobbinson 40" LED Bar, no diff lockers, double tank, well kept, and a few more extras. I live in Ecuador, a great place for overlanding. Any way, I went and tested the car out to a crater lake (One of many near by) and I was amazed!

So, I am new to the 4x4 world in Toyotas and in general, and I have a few questions.

So, we normally drive in H (High) and as required.

• When should I use the Locks on the hubs, and when not?
• When I engage them, must I take a drive in reverse a few meters?


If I shift it to L (LOW) the difference in torque and shorter gears is evident.....

• When should I use this WITH locks engaged
• When should I use this with locks DISENGAGED?
• When in the WORLD do I need to use the H4 button and what does it do or what is it used for?
• If my hub locks are not engaged, what is the dif in LOW?

Any explanation to this would be great, the DOES and DONT's.... but I got lost when I realized I had driven some nice roads today with the Locks on, in LOW gear and HIGH when it was easy, but got home and realized, "Oh crap, what did I do, I never pressed that button!"

Any insights are great.... it performed INCREDIBLE, I just cant believe it, so now I wonder, What if I pressed that button???

Thanks
Stefano

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Joined
Aug 3, 2015
Messages
144
Location
Nova Scotia
So, we normally drive in H (High) and as required.

• When should I use the Locks on the hubs, and when not?
• When I engage them, must I take a drive in reverse a few meters?

If yours is a Part-Time 4x4 (which the presence of an "H4" button and manual locking hubs would suggest, Full-Time 4x4 trucks got a "Centre Diff Lock" button or no button at all), then the time to engage the locking hubs is when you intend to shift into 4WD (by pressing the "H4" button). What the locking front hubs do is engage the hub to the axle shaft, so when the axle shaft turns, so too will your wheel. If you press "H4" without your hubs locked, the front wheels will not spin.

You can leave the hubs locked at all times if you want, you'll just be needlessly turning the front differential and axles. Disengaging the front locking hubs in 2WD will save you a little bit of fuel.

No need to reverse. If the hub locks turn fully to the locked position, the hubs are locked and will stay that way until you unlock them.

If I shift it to L (LOW) the difference in torque and shorter gears is evident.....

• When should I use this WITH locks engaged
• When should I use this with locks DISENGAGED?
• When in the WORLD do I need to use the H4 button and what does it do or what is it used for?
• If my hub locks are not engaged, what is the dif in LOW?

Any explanation to this would be great, the DOES and DONT's.... but I got lost when I realized I had driven some nice roads today with the Locks on, in LOW gear and HIGH when it was easy, but got home and realized, "Oh crap, what did I do, I never pressed that button!"

Any insights are great.... it performed INCREDIBLE, I just cant believe it, so now I wonder, What if I pressed that button??

Low range is just a different (lower) gear set inside your transfer case, which is handy for off road use or situations where you require a bit more torque or slow speed control. It is safe to use Low in 2WD and 4WD, but there's not too many occasions where you'll end up using it in 2WD (except maybe launching a boat, or towing something really heavy up a really steep hill).

As above, having the hubs locked in just means the front hubs are engaged to the axle, so if you decide to put it in 4WD the front wheels will spin. Whether or not the hubs are locked has no effect on the use of High or Low range.

It might be that your truck automatically shifts into 4WD when you put it in Low gear, my Hilux Surf was like that. If that's the case, leave the hubs unlocked if you want 2WD low or lock them if you want 4WD.

With Part-Time 4WD (like yours), 4WD should only be used on loose surfaces where the wheels can "slip". Using 4WD on any surface with more grip than gravel or hard-packed dirt will make the transfer case bind up when you try to turn (you'll feel this).

Nice truck!!

Cheers
 
Joined
Sep 14, 2021
Messages
13
Location
Ecuador, South America
If yours is a Part-Time 4x4 (which the presence of an "H4" button and manual locking hubs would suggest, Full-Time 4x4 trucks got a "Centre Diff Lock" button or no button at all), then the time to engage the locking hubs is when you intend to shift into 4WD (by pressing the "H4" button). What the locking front hubs do is engage the hub to the axle shaft, so when the axle shaft turns, so too will your wheel. If you press "H4" without your hubs locked, the front wheels will not spin.

You can leave the hubs locked at all times if you want, you'll just be needlessly turning the front differential and axles. Disengaging the front locking hubs in 2WD will save you a little bit of fuel.

No need to reverse. If the hub locks turn fully to the locked position, the hubs are locked and will stay that way until you unlock them.



Low range is just a different (lower) gear set inside your transfer case, which is handy for off road use or situations where you require a bit more torque or slow speed control. It is safe to use Low in 2WD and 4WD, but there's not too many occasions where you'll end up using it in 2WD (except maybe launching a boat, or towing something really heavy up a really steep hill).

As above, having the hubs locked in just means the front hubs are engaged to the axle, so if you decide to put it in 4WD the front wheels will spin. Whether or not the hubs are locked has no effect on the use of High or Low range.

It might be that your truck automatically shifts into 4WD when you put it in Low gear, my Hilux Surf was like that. If that's the case, leave the hubs unlocked if you want 2WD low or lock them if you want 4WD.

With Part-Time 4WD (like yours), 4WD should only be used on loose surfaces where the wheels can "slip". Using 4WD on any surface with more grip than gravel or hard-packed dirt will make the transfer case bind up when you try to turn (you'll feel this).

Nice truck!!

Cheers
WOW! Thats what I call an Explanation! Excellent man! Thanks so much, you cleared a lot of doubts for me! I will be trying a bit more on the go, the other day I managed to engage the HUBS and H4 in a gravel road and we were DARN HEAVY and the traction was noticeable. I was not in need of the LOW Gear, but it worked good for slips and traction.

Maybe this post comes as a nuisance for many but, hell. Id rather be ignroant for a minute in life, than for the rest of my life!

LOVING this new Outlanding, 4x4 life!
 

Broski

I love Wheelin my 80
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Joined
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Messages
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Location
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It's a Left hand drive so it's not a JDM they drive on the right side. Meany here would love to have that Reg including me with the Left hand drive, part time 4x and stick shift.
Nice find and welcome to Mud
 
Joined
Sep 14, 2021
Messages
13
Location
Ecuador, South America
It's a Left hand drive so it's not a JDM they drive on the right side. Meany here would love to have that Reg including me with the Left hand drive, part time 4x and stick shift.
Nice find and welcome to Mud
Thanks. You know 95% of the 80's that came here are stick shift. Automatics here in 9000FT altitude and steep hill city, automatics were never apreciated. Now, 2010 and beyond, far more common, but before, it was a SIN to think of owning an automatic. I thought that all FJ80s had the H4 button. As I heard they were 4WD at all times....
 

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