Thoughts on a new cruiser (1 Viewer)

Joined
Dec 25, 2009
Messages
69
Location
Calgary, Alberta
Hey guys,

I want to know what you think...

1989 Toyota Land Cruiser HDJ-60 - Calgary SUV, Crossover For Sale - Kijiji Calgary

I guess the short story is the better half and I want to drive down to Belize/where ever in the Americas in the next few years, I told her we needed a cruiser to do it and she told me to get one then! Free pass right?

So I am having a hard time deciding between styles of trucks. I would like an older BJ60 but the better half has sort of nixed the idea of an older truck like that. So this leads me to 81's or 61's. I really like the idea of diesel so its likely going to be a JDM. The prices on JDM's are dropping (I know, I have a Pajero I'm trying to sell).

I like the idea of a manual but it seems so few of the 81's came manual. There are a few more 61's with a manual (H55F I believe??) so sourcing parts for them is a little easier. I am a little worried about parts for the 24V jazz though. I guess that will just require some time on here. The 61 is a little simpler but the 81 is a little more refined. The 61's are generally cheaper and only a few years older >>>> I get to buy fun toys like tires, lifts, racks, you get the idea.

I'm fairly mechanically inclined and do have an older, stupidly reliable chevy truck I can always drive if the cruiser is in surgery.

I would ideally like to keep this for quite a few years and would love nothing more than to just pile miles on it.

Send me some thoughts,

Cruiserless and confused.
 
Joined
Nov 6, 2007
Messages
712
Location
Edmonton, AB
Correct, the H55F is the best 5 speed built by Toyota, and it rightfully sits behind that 12H-T from the ad.
As far as 24V components, many are rebuildable or still available from Japan for the time being.
Both the 81's and 61's are a lot more "complex" than domestic Cruisers, since the amount of electronics in them(ie: power windows, power sun roof, electric locks, ice box coolers, electric lockers....). This is the nature of Japanese trucks being more loaded or outfitted for Japs.
Have you considered a 70 series at all ? Like a HZJ77 if you need the room comparable to a HJ61 or HDJ / HZJ 81.
Some common issues that I have encountered with JDMs is that many require a Transfer case rebuild, if it hasn't already been done in Canada.
As well, many of the automatic transmissions ( A440F or A442F) have been found to require overhauls, due to their stop and go use in Japanese traffic.
Consider your budget when shopping for a truck. It's easy to pay $10,000 for a truck and end up repairing / modifying it to your needs and end up exceeding the cost of the truck.

I say, put all your options of trucks available that suit your needs, consider how much money they require to get them to a level of modification that will suit your needs and go ahead in the process of purchasing one.

Good luck, share with us anything that you find.
 
Joined
Dec 25, 2009
Messages
69
Location
Calgary, Alberta
I have thought a little about the HZJ77 but it seems like I'd be looking for quite a while to source one! I'd like a 2 door 73/74 but they just seem a little small, not much larger than my current Pajero.

the 12H-T and h55F does have a nice ring to it though... It is unfortunate that the JDM's are so loaded with options, I'm more of a manual everything kinda guy. Manual windows, locks etc. I'll take power steering though. I do have a budget, probably around the 10K mark, with a few grand a year following that for preventative maintenance and the such. It would be nice to get something for $5-7.5K and then have some money left over for work that'll be needed right away. I think a 77 is going to blow the budget by a lot!!!

This will take some deliberating.
 
Joined
Mar 31, 2008
Messages
210
you should have bought Northern's when he had it for sale!!! ;) or mine for that matter.
I am coming to calgary tomorrow and was planning on checking that one out along with another 80 series.

Repairing the 61 was expensive, but if you can do it your self, you can save a ton of money. I put just a little more than my original purchase price into repairs for mine. BUT, I also got a little more than my original purchase price back when i sold it! not bad for four years of driving. It ended up costing me about $350 a month to run it. and that number would have been less if i was in any way mechanically inclined. I wake up missing my 61 every single day. For a super long trip to belize, i would lean towards the 81, just for the comfort level of the better half. I know i could drive long distances with no problem in my 61, but i would hear complaints about the "ride" from my wife after a few hours.
 
Joined
Nov 6, 2007
Messages
712
Location
Edmonton, AB
A Troopie wagon from Australia, like a HZJ75 should be a "bare-bones" model. The only problem is that many of the motors in them are miled out, requiring a rebuild of the motor to freshen it. They're all enclosed, and a long wheel base that provides a smoother ride.
A HJ61 is most likely your best option, or a real clean Canadian HJ60, and spend the money to turbo it.
You're right, the HZJ77 is a hard find, but it's a cool rig with a larger price tag than other models.
Some HZJ74s have been popping up in Alberta, they are a mid-wheel base truck. Remove the rear seats and build a camp / storage box.
The 1HZ are great motors, and will continue to have parts for them much longer than any B or H series motor.
 

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