Rotunda: 1964 FJ45 Short Bed Fixed Top (1 Viewer)

jmlockwood

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A few weeks back, @wngrog sent me a link to this truck’s for sale ad. I initially passed on it but I could not get the truck out of my head. So last Thursday I sent @LeRoy Cordova a PM inquiring about the truck. The following morning we struck a deal and money exchanged hands. Score.

I developed a nice little friendship with @wngrog through his work on my Mustard 40 series. We kept dreaming up ideas for our next project and quickly came up with some ideas for this 45. We were going to swap the motor, transmission, transfer case, axles...everything...you name it....to “modernize” and make it a great driver. I know...I know. We had great intentions and I had spent a lot of money by the time I flew down to meet LeRoy and actually see the truck. That all can be documented here: Builds - Project Hate It or Love It - 1963 FJ45 Short Bed Fixed Top Pickup

Well.....this Thursday I flew down and saw the truck before it was transported to Mississippi. It was amazing. Like really amazing. I had explained to LeRoy the plans we had for the truck. He saw my vision, I think, and understood why we wanted to make the changes we wanted to make. But sometime during that little meeting I started to get this weird feeling. The truck really was special.

I casually mentioned to LeRoy that i was already having second thoughts about the build. I was torn though because I had some really great guys doing some cool things. Maybe I could find another early 40 series something or other? Maybe? Well, LeRoy had something up his sleeve of sorts. He had another 45 series....this one a 1963 production but without a motor and not as complete. A deal was hatched and I bought that one for our project and decided we will just keep the 1964 as original as possible.

The truck is being delivered to Nolen’s in Mississippi tomorrow. The plan is to polish out some final details with the truck and make a few modifications. Nolen is going to update the brakes a bit, replace the tired suspension, and a few other odds and ends. Nothing crazy. The truck can then live the good life on my farm in North Florida.

I spent some time on the phone tonight with @Tank5 who was able to share some really neat details about the truck. The truck was original to Albuquerque, New Mexico, and was probably with the original family until 2010 or so. Dennis tried to buy the truck and it even stayed at his house for a little transition period before moving on to its next owner in Dallas, Texas. The truck stayed in Dallas for a few years before LeRoy acquired it and it moved down into Florida. That was 2017 and the truck was also painted around the same time.

And here we are. These pictures were taken yesterday when I saw the truck. I opted to take delivery of the truck with the original split rims (not the black ones pictured).

The VIN is 4FJ4515784 and I have posted this information on the short bed fixed top registry.


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whitey45

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Very surprised this was for sale for so long, great shorty, and Leroy is a great guy! Just want to know, who is taller, you? Or the Grog? Because my big ass does not fit in a classic swb fixed top!!
 

jmlockwood

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Very surprised this was for sale for so long, great shorty, and Leroy is a great guy! Just want to know, who is taller, you? Or the Grog? Because my big ass does not fit in a classic swb fixed top!!
I am around 5’11”. So it is certainly spacious and it probably won’t be at the top of my list for long trips. But man it Is cool......
 

wngrog

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Nice old truck it would be a shame to do modifications on her. I’m looking forward to the 63 build.

She going to change from the current state, mainly because driving a stock 64 with single circuit drum brakes just plain sucks


I’ll roll out the plan on this one once I lay eyes on it, but I’m 99% thought out on this because it’s right down the line of what I have planned for The Goat

Keep it cool but upgrade the stuff that’s just plain 1964.......
 

wngrog

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That is a great truck. I happy to see it stay on the forum and get some attention.

Funny. When I read through that train wreck of a For Sale ad the morning @jmlockwood sent it to me, it stood out that you and @whitey45 both blessed it early. I know you were involved from the beginning recovering this truck so if you feel like telling any stories, we would live to hear rhem
(I know you told it all to John)

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Tank5

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@wngrog not that you should check the work that I did as it was 2015 when completed but from memory this is what did to it.

Edit: Above should have read "not that you shouldn't check". I am not that high on myself. The work is 5 years old things could have changed.

New brake shoes and wheel cyclinders from SOF all around. Pulled the tcase to replace some seals. Replaced the water pump, thermostat, rad hoses, and belts. Rebuilt the clutch and brake master cyclinders. Replaced the clutch slave cyclinder, I think. I am sure I went through all the fluids too.
 
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wngrog

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@wngrog not that you should check the work that I did as it was 2015 when completed but from memory this is what did to it.

New brake shoes and wheel cyclinders from SOF all around. Pulled the tcase to replace some seals. Replaced the water pump, thermostat, rad hoses, and belts. Rebuilt the clutch and brake master cyclinders. Replaced the clutch slave cyclinder, I think. I am sure I went through all the fluids too.

The plan is to replace the brakes with discs. I have a 45 with drum brakes and even through they are correct now (as these seem to be from my limited driving) they are coming out.

I’ll be redoing all the hoses. It’s got some non stock alternator that’s riding way crooked with a thin belt so it’s got to go.

I’ll test the engine for leak down and compression and hopefully this drivetrain can stay in the truck and I can just dress it out in place. I am also going to try to paint the firewall the color of the truck as well.

I’ve got lots of questions Tank. Please stay tuned.

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Tank5

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@wngrog I had to edit my post/quote above, you should reread it. It could have come off wrong.

I will be watching, there is a lot that could be done to it that I did not do. I understand ditching the drum brakes. Replacing and adjusting all those drum cylinders sucks compared to working on disk brakes. Not to mention the better performance you get from disk brakes.
 

wngrog

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@wngrog I had to edit my post/quote above, you should reread it. It could have come off wrong.

I will be watching, there is a lot that could be done to it that I did not do. I understand ditching the drum brakes. Replacing and adjusting all those drum cylinders sucks compared to working on disk brakes. Not to mention the better performance you get from disk brakes.

I fought my 1967 4 wheel drums for 2 solid weeks with expert input from all the Cruiser Gods and finally got them right. Never again. Ever.

I did not take your comment any different before or after he edit. So glad to have the history and your input. Thank you sir.

More pics.

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