Think I found an FJ40! What're the downfalls of the '72 FJ40?

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I think I finally found an FJ40 worth taking a look at. It's completely stock except for a Warn winch and diamond plate in the usual places. Claimed to be rust free (I'll check under the diamond plate before purchase). Unknown mileage, the odo reads 23,xxx. Looks real clean in the pictures and the guy wants $3200 for it. I'm having a real hard time finding a rust free rig around here that people don't want $6000+ for, so I've expanded my search and this one is about four hours away.

What I want to know is, what're the advantages and disadvantages of the earlier FJ40's? I hear over and over the drum brakes in the front, so how much would it cost to swap those to disc? What else would require attention/updating? How easy is it to fit bucket seats in the older FJ's? I think I'd also like to convert it to a 4spd on the floor.

What I'm worried about is that I'm going to spend so much money updating an older one I'd have been better off just buying a newer one. This is going to be my daily driver.
 
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I also have a 72, and I just went though this. I paid I think $250 for a front disc brake axel, but it was a pretty good deal from another MUD member, another $100 or so to rebuild it. $150 for the 4 speed transmission, I was fortuante to find a 4 speed that had a converted output shaft for a three speed T-case, however you can just switch one of the internal t-case gears out to accomdate the 4 speed.

That being said, if you take some time and shop around it won't cost you too much, and besides you can always do a mini truck brake swap in the end for a decent price as well.
 
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Was there anything else you had to do? Did you keep the stock engine and stock bench seat?
 
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72 have very little smog equipment on it (charcoal canister in the middle bench seat back).
I drove my 72 for years with the 3 speed with no problems...I thought the gearing was fine. That said I plan to put in a 4 speed I have when I redo it.:)
The 72 has no roll bar if it's stock and you have to move the rear seats if you want to put a roll bar in.

Kevin
 
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If you really want a 4 speed, disc brake truck, you are definitely better off buying one. Unless you have serious type garage tools, or some one with pretty good knowledge to help you, your money is much better spent buying a later model truck. 72's do tend to have less rust, there's already plenty of them out there converted to 2F, 4 speed, 350, and more. I'd wait for another one. You'll spend considerable money on the 4 speed swap unless you can do it yourself.
 
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As long as the info's out there on the net, I can do it myself. I have a full diesel shop at my disposal with just about any tool I can imagine I'd need. My favorite toys are the plasma cutter and the blasting cabinet :)

Here are some pics of the rig, can you guys spot anything wrong with it from the pics?

BTW it's a 3 speed on the floor, I though they were 3 speeds on the tree?



 
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Looks pretty clean, but you are right don't know what the diamond plate is hiding. I am sure that you are going to take a look before you buy it, but things like condition of interior make a big difference. And you will end up spending a lot of $$$, trust me. It never ends! Good Luck!!
 
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I think for $3200 if I fixed the brakes, line-x'd the interior, did the 4spd swap, and painted it I'd still probably be right around the $5k that people around here want for their later model FJ's, what do you guys think?
 
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i think for $3200.00 its not bad, looks clean. crawl under and look at it and see how it looks behind the diamond plate. and see if any one has butchered the electrical, if every thing works i would consider it. i paid $6000.00 for mine on the west side of the state and it was preety clean, wasnt stock but in good shape and i knew the guy for about 10 years before that. oh and flip the bezel!
 
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No I don't think they do. And to answer your other question, my 72 never had a "F" in it it was a Chevy 292 that was in bad shape, mated to a 3 speed. When I roll it out of the garage on Sunday (for the first time) it will be 350TBI 4 Speed LC and 3 Speed LC T-case with Saginaw steering. So I guess I am pretty well departed from the 72, other than the body.
 

brian

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joey93turbo said:
BTW it's a 3 speed on the floor, I though they were 3 speeds on the tree?
they were, but it was/is super easy to convert them to a floor shifter.
IF you pick it up, might want to drive it as is, atleast for a little while.
the 3 speeds have a 1:1 3rd gear, just like a 4spd's fourth.
as discused a week or so ago, there's nothing wrong with PROPERLY tuned drum brakes.
i preffer the earlier ones, but that's just me.
 
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My 72 is 3 on the floor factory. I think that 72 was switched mid year.

You said it has the stock bench but I see head rests in the picture.
I don't have any head rest mounts on my seats.


Kevin
 

yooper

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a valid location
The bezel is the trim around the headlights and over the grill. The fat part is supposed to be on top. Yours is upside down. It's very common.
 
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my cruiser is a 72 also. I drove it for years with the F, 3 speed tranny, and drum brakes. Great truck in stock form. Since then, I have swaped out for a stroked 2f, h-41 4 speed tranny, SOA, 36"SX's, 4 wheel disc brakes and the interior out of a 78 FJ40.

So, I don't know if you can say mine is still a 72. Depending on your location, I have 3 or 4 4 speed trannys kicking around along with many other early cruiser goodies

Chris
 
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Not sure where you are, but $3200 seems spendy for a 72 we payed $3600 for a 78 with 66,000 miles and I thought that was a little high. it had a rebuilt 350 and a rebuilt transfercase. body was dented in a few places, but no rust other than surface.
 
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My 3/72 FJ40 is 3 on the floor, factory. The threads were never even used for the 3 on the tree up on the cloumn.

I like the simplicity of mine. I rebuilt my "F", put a Jim C. rebuild carb and a non-usa distributor w/ vaccuum advance on and have made many other mods to make it a very capable off-road rig. Did the MAF disc conversion -- did this early on and whould not have spent the money knowing what I know today about just swapping out the whole front axle. All in all I'm happy with Buddy. He's in our family forever now. I hope he likes it.

Jody.
 
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Looks like there is an aftermarket rollbar in there, and 72s didn't have headrests on the seats.

Also, why would there be diamond plate on the rear quarters if there is no rust? Think about it...

Chances are good that the odo has rolled twice, at 33 years old, 223K is not unheard of.

Pretty clean looking, but I'd be knocking them down on the price.

Kirk
 
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