Builds Project Pikachu: 1977 FJ40

cbmontgo

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Just awesome man!!!

Im really feeling the itch of taking adventures in my 42 sooner then later. 1st one will prob be Black Hills Cruiser Classic BHCC for short haha. ITs the closest major get together from me up here in Canadaland. One day moab....
Thanks. Yeah, I'd also love to make the BHCC.

Pikachu is likely heading to Utah in the Spring, so stay tuned...
 

cbmontgo

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Great photos. I basically completely failed at taking them. The small towns in the area have some great landmarks for photos.
By the way, I saw your rig last weekend and kept meaning to find you. I've really enjoyed your build thread.
 

swelltimes

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Took the soft top off of the rig yesterday in preparation for work on the hard top and rear half doors. Windy day, but was still nice with the heater on and the mut by my side.
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Oh man, I'm envious! My '77 FJ-40 is in my garage while I finish a card rebuild, and while I also wait for the roads to clear from today's snow....
 

cbmontgo

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So, back to the hard top. I'm getting ready to take Pikachu on a trip where the forecast is calling for rain, light snow, and cool temperatures. After extensively digging into this thing for a couple of weeks, I realized that the condition of the hard top was marginal, but salvageable. The top had been stored in the elements for many years and the Mississippi humidity had taken its toll. I almost threw this thing away after I installed the soft top, but decided against it. Overall, I'm glad that I kept it for functionality alone.

The first thing I did was replace the plexiglass rear vent window with a used OEM glass that I found on Ebay. That was an easy victory. Next, I stripped the rust off of the inside of the side panels and sprayed a few coats of Toyota Yellow 532 from Paintscratch.com on the inside of the panels. The shade of yellow was more green than yellow, but I digress.
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Next order of business was the hard-top-to-tub gasket from City Racer, as well as the fiberglass top gasket seal from Cool Cruisers.
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As you may recall, I wanted to keep my tailgate and find a set of donor amby doors that I could build into a half set. I spent a great deal of time figuring out the best way to cut these and make it happen. The patina from the mustard set that I found was a great match. Now it was time to slice 'em up.
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cbmontgo

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I settled on my old Milwaukee iron chop saw to start the process. This thing sliced through the doors like butter, and the cleanup was done with my air grinder.
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Before long, I had a nice half set of upper ambulance doors (and a rough lower half set).
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Next came the fine tuning.
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Before long, it was coming together. I had several feet of leftover gasket material from City Racer that I used on the tailgate, which locked everything tight as a drum once the latches were locked.
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cbmontgo

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Next up was this sonofabitch of a crap fiberglass top. Despite having a sunroof, the fiberglass is in nice shape. The inside gutters are very, very rough. I knocked about 10 pounds of rust out of them, drilled out tons of rusted/broken bolts, and threw a coat of Rustoleum over the bottom side.
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Eventually, I had it clean enough to work with.
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I also worked on the bent front valance with a little bit of success. It will be functional and bolt onto the windshield frame now at least.
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Drilled out lots of these. I am a 40 purist, but this sh*t ain't worth it.
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cbmontgo

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So, the top of the "top" is very clean, but was faded down to the base yellowish fiberglass in areas. I found a really great paint match for rattle can Cygnus White: Rustoleum Appliance Epoxy in Biscuit. Coats very well and did a beautiful job...with only 2 cans (less than $ 8).

Before:
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After:
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Nice finish:
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cbmontgo

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The CCOT weatherstrip doesn't come with pre-cut holes, but is worth the cost savings in my opinion. Fits quite well. Only took a few minutes to slice out the holes with a sharp blade.
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cbmontgo

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Next step was to put it all together. I've still got to install quite a few bolts and get this thing buttoned up, but here we are. Pikachu has a functional hard top when needed. I am very glad that I kept this top. It seems that these are suddenly becoming really hard to find.

The soft top will go back on in time for summer.
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abtx4x4

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How sturdy are the half doors with only one hinge per side? I was thinking I would have to add a second hinge when I tackle this project.
 

cbmontgo

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How sturdy are the half doors with only one hinge per side? I was thinking I would have to add a second hinge when I tackle this project.
If you want the upper half doors to close outside of the tailgate, then you'll need a second set of hinges. In my case, the tailgate closes over the doors and tightens them down, so there isn't really a need for more hinges. Not sure if that makes sense or not...
 
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