Builds Sentimental Restoration of Family 1990 FJ62

Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
833
Location
Tucson, AZ
In a dozen years of participating on the site, I never dreamed I'd have a running thread such as a build. In this case it is a restoration thread. I decided to post like this as kind of a give back effort, as I have benefited so much from the many folk here. I hope that there are nuggets in my restoration experience from which others can benefit.

I/we are the original owners of this 1990 62. It was the last new 62 to be sold in the area, and it was the first vehicle that my wife and I bought together (January 1990). Its service was to have multiple utilities. It was initially a daily driver for the wifey, but was also our adventure vehicle to get us into canyons to access favorite rivers for fishing. Our first kiddo came home from his birth in the vehicle, and both the kids and we found ourselves indelibly bound to the Cruiser for serving us so well. It became my daily driver for many years as I commuted to and from the west coast and to and from work while there. First born dreamed of driving it, and upon reaching 16, did so...for about six years.

We took extremely good care of the vehicle over the years, and frankly spent a fortune in general maintenance over the decades. In 2010, son started to have clutch slipping issues, and the tranny was rebuilt at 205K. In 2013, the Cruiser was returned to my care, and has been largely a very low mileage user.

The Arizona sun finally took out the clear coat, and the old girl lost her luster. But as fate and good care would have it, the engine is strong and reliable. But as I reached retirement, I began to wonder if it was time to let it go. The wife and family absolutely forbid it. Late this summer, with the wifey's endorsement, I turned to a restoration effort. Upon evaluating the engine and project, we've determined what needs to be done, can be done, and for how much investment. Hence, the mission has begun to restore, and as you will read, upgrade in some ways. After 28 years of great service, the Cruiser will be retired to casual fun use status, insured and registered as a collector. It will be our fun ride.

The first task, and often the most expensive, was the repaint. Fate has smiled on us with this step due to a long-standing relationship with a local body shop tech. Once we knew where this was going to put us, we could plan on the rest. The refinish of the vehicle is underway. I only have one photo to show you now. I visited the tech yesterday and found the Cruiser well into prep. Since there is zero rust on the vehicle (except where two spots exposed metal in prep caught some rain last week) we decided that removing the glass was unnecessary and might open a can of worms with seals and such. Otherwise, the prep tasks are removing the failed clear coat, repairing very small sheet metal imperfections such as door dings (marked with yellow tape), and going down to metal where necessary. Everything is removed from the exterior, including bumpers and grille. Door handles will also be removed before priming.

The chrome gutter trim has all been removed for prep, and the gutter will be sealed with self-leveling material typically used by the body shop.

Here is a rundown of all the restoration tasks we have planned. The status of each task follows in bold. Except where noted, all items are on hand and waiting for completion of refinishing:

Exterior

Complete refinish to OEM 1990 metallic beige color and clear coat. Gutters sealed. Polish-out to match OEM virtual lack of orange peel. I will apply Klasse High Gloss Sealant before installing new emblems, lights, mirrors, etc.. Complete although switched to Meguiars Synthetic Wax.

All external parts are being replaced or restored. New emblems, side marker lights, and license plate header (with plate illumination). Complete

Rear light assemblies are reasonably new. Not replaced.

Front quarter panel engine compartment vents are OEM and in excellent condition.

Rear quarter panel vents are replaced with used and restored. (Photo)

Mud flaps are original OEM and restored. (Photo)

Orange front blinker assemblies are reasonably new and only required front polishing to restore.

Parking lights in headlight bezels are reasonably new. No replacement or restoration needed.

Aftermarket electric side view replacement mirrors (Cruiser Corps). Complete

Front radiator grille and headlight bezels are in quite good shape, but will be retired to spare part status by aftermarket replacements from Cruiser Parts. Complete

ARB front bumper. Wifey insists on the ARB for extra deer strike protection/armor. Complete.

Rear OEM bumper to remain for now.

OEM rims remain. Tire size Changed to 31 x 10.5R15 Fireston AT. Complete

New front and rear hub OEM ornaments. Complete

Replacement front wheel well splash aprons from Trail Tailor. Complete

All wiper arms repainted satin black and matte clear coated. New wiper caps and matte clear coated. Complete

Select lamps replaced with LED version. Back-up lights complete.

OME suspension (2007) to remain. Replaced OME Steering Stabilizer.

Interior


BMW X90 front seats with Torfab brackets. Tan. Clean up and electrical breakout complete. Installation Complete

Current HJ61 tumble split back seats to be reupholstered to match BMW seats. TBD

New carpet bundle from our mud colleague @dnp. Unlikely now that 5-speed conversion not being done.

Upgraded speaker package and compact subwoofer. 2-din AV head is reasonably new. Complete.

Door panels, side panels, and dash all in excellent condition. No changes.

Door lock actuator "permanent fix" relay mod to be done. Parts on hand. Possibly will also do power window mod. Complete.

Interior dash lights to be replaced with white LED versions. Complete in Green.

Under the Hood/Drive Train


Hella custom FJ62 upgrade harness and H4 lens assemblies. Not required. Replacement sealed beams excellent.

Replacement silicone vacuum hoses. As required. 3mm Complete.

Replace hood pads. Complete

OEM hood insulation lining in excellent condition.

12" fan added to front of condenser for condenser and engine compartment active ventilation. T-stat controlled by 140 degree sensor attached to the EGR hose. Fan kill switch on dash. Complete although electrical t-stat abandoned.

Knuckle/axle rebuild and wheel bearings (Cruiser Outfitter kit), new OEM discs and Aisin ceremic pads. Complete.

Aisin/OEM master cylinder, new. Complete.

Brake Booster, new aftermarket. Complete.

H55F conversion as a final step. New carpet will be done prior except for the front section. Abandoned.

Oil Pan Gasket replacement. Scheduled 10/11/2021. Complete.

ADDED:


B&M 70268 Transmission cooler in series with Mishimoto radiator. Complete.

Mishimoto Radiator. New Toyota Red fluid. Complete.

Synthetic ATF and Synthetic transfer case oil. Complete.

Radiant heat shielding of exhaust adjacent to transmission. Complete

4psi Pressure Sender with interior cabin Loud Alarm as Emergency Oil Gallery Plug Failure Alarm. Scheduled 10/11/2021. Complete.

GlowShift Temp (under dash) Gauge Kit Added for Transmission temperature. Scheduled 10/11/21 Complete.

GlowShift Oil Pressure (under dash) Gauge Kit. Details in post #193. Complete 10/2021

Completion photo.
20190226_110252.jpg
 
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Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
833
Location
Tucson, AZ
Hi, Funny how the cruisers become part of the family. We've raised 5 children and now 4 grand children in ours. I'm sure it will look great when you are finished. Mike

Very impressive, Mike. Ours will be ready for grand kids when they come some day.
 

86aggie

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Great effort. When we started talking about the BMW seats, I, of course, had no idea of the history of yours. The similarities in the history are remarkable.

My wife to be and I bought our 62 as the last one available in Virginia. The 80s were already on the dealer's lot. My oldest came home from the hospital in it, and took his first road trip to Atlanta, when he was weeks old, in it. He and my older daughter both drove it at 16, he passing it on to her when he left for college. I got it back about a year ago and have been doing similar work, without the paint job. Sorry, to hijack your build thread.
 
Joined
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Messages
833
Location
Tucson, AZ
Great effort. When we started talking about the BMW seats, I, of course, had no idea of the history of yours. The similarities in the history are remarkable.

My wife to be and I bought our 62 as the last one available in Virginia. The 80s were already on the dealer's lot. My oldest came home from the hospital in it, and took his first road trip to Atlanta, when he was weeks old, in it. He and my older daughter both drove it at 16, he passing it on to her when he left for college. I got it back about a year ago and have been doing similar work, without the paint job. Sorry, to hijack your build thread.

Ha...very cool. Parallel life arcs with Cruisers. No worries; your comments are always welcome.
 
Joined
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Will be watching with interest. Have finally decided to start doing some work again on my 84 60, so once your baby is back from the paint shop, post up pics, and price if you would be so kind.

Glenn in Marana
 
Joined
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Messages
833
Location
Tucson, AZ
Will be watching with interest. Have finally decided to start doing some work again on my 84 60, so once your baby is back from the paint shop, post up pics, and price if you would be so kind.

Glenn in Marana

Hi Glenn. Wilco. I think I'm going to have another important local recommendation for mechanical work a month or so after I get it back from paint.
 
Joined
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Cool. At this point my next major plan is a complete desmog (yay for living in the sticks) and seeing how well my old 2f does. After that is the H55 transfer and lift from my parts rig, and eventual 350/350hp chevy heart transplant when the 2F gives up the ghost. Then the pretty options will be on the table.

Glenn
 
Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
833
Location
Tucson, AZ
Cool. At this point my next major plan is a complete desmog (yay for living in the sticks) and seeing how well my old 2f does. After that is the H55 transfer and lift from my parts rig, and eventual 350/350hp chevy heart transplant when the 2F gives up the ghost. Then the pretty options will be on the table.

Glenn

That's some heavy lifting, but it'll be fun to hear how it progresses.
 
Joined
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Messages
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Tucson, AZ
The wait for paint to complete will really teach one patience. There's not a ton of news, but there's a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. I have a completion date now communicated from the paint tech as early in the week of Thanksgiving.

I had to get the HJ61 front seats out for @CenTXFJ60 (picked up by @drenmaster). I did get a brief look at the vehicle when I picked up those. A tech was working on sanding the primer. It was very smooth to the touch.

So, I've prepped the BMW driver seat by attaching the Torfab brackets. I just have to drop it in, bolt in, and drive home. I'll then fully tighten the BMW seat rails to the Torfab brackets. This is easier done at home because I have to run temporary power to the seat to be able to expose the head of the front then aft bolts in the rails. FWIW, the floor seat taps are M10 x 1.25 in size. I'm not sure if the OEM bolts will be long enough, so I have slightly longer ones on hand. Also worth mentioning (since I didn't know this), bolts for something critical like seats should be Grade 8 hardness (or 10.9 in metric).

Then it's time for detail work such as the Klasse sealant and installation of emblems, lights, mirrors, grille kit, and passenger seat. Next is electrical runs for the seats. Much of this will get done the week of Thanksgiving. I'll also then re-think the project management based on the many tasks remaining. Looks like a busy, fun holiday season coming.

Hopefully, next up will be new photos for Thanksgiving.
 
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gregnash

Anal Retentive Analyst
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Carson City, NV
Pricey, but incredibly effective and durable. Also rigid in the fields so it stays in place; no flopping around.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009B7QSIG/ref=oh_aui_search_detailpage?ie=UTF8&psc=1
At $55 prime shipped I dont know that I would really consider that overly expensive. I usually go through the Costco ones about every year and those are about $20ish. So if this last more than a couple years then it is worth the money.

And much like anything else that fits our beloved LCs well, things are not necessarily "cheap".
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Tucson, AZ
That's some heavy lifting, but it'll be fun to hear how it progresses.

Haven't had a ton of time to set aside for the project, but did manage to get my gantry crane built and the front end off of the donor LC. Here is a pic. You can see the gantry behind the LC in the background. Same setup as one of the HF ones but branded as Titan. Shipped to me for less than HF even with one of their 20% coupons. Think I'll get some really good pics of the 2F engine setup now that the fenders and front clip are off. Everybody always needs good pics, and this appears to be a pretty good botch job of desmog on an 83, with aftermarket pipes.

Glenn in Marana



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