Threading back 3-Speed Threaded Shift Rod for 1970 FJ40

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Jul 22, 2022
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Guelph, Ontario
Hi Folks,

Newbie here and my Haynes manual is still on its way....

For the last 25 years I've dreamt of owning an FJ or BJ and now I finally own one: a 1970 3-speed with original 1F engine. Fixed the horn and a signal light issue in the last couple of days but this one came up earlier this morning and I'm going to need your help: the threaded rod unthreaded at the steering wheel. Can someone kindly advise steps for getting it rethreaded? Any advice on avoiding a relapse (e.g. orange locktite), greasing points etc.)?

See pic - the threads don't seem stripped at this time.

1658531785799.jpeg
 

EWheeler

4 Cruisers, No Garage !
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Hi Folks,

Newbie here and my Haynes manual is still on its way....

For the last 25 years I've dreamt of owning an FJ or BJ and now I finally own one: a 1970 3-speed with original 1F engine. Fixed the horn and a signal light issue in the last couple of days but this one came up earlier this morning and I'm going to need your help: the threaded rod unthreaded at the steering wheel. Can someone kindly advise steps for getting it rethreaded? Any advice on avoiding a relapse (e.g. orange locktite), greasing points etc.)?

See pic - the threads don't seem stripped at this time.

View attachment 3066311
Pretty sure you can remove the shift rod lever and then re-thread that male end into the turn signal housing. You MAY have to remove the steering wheel and turn signal housing, re-thread the male part into the turn signal housing, and then reinstall. The shift lever removes by depressing two pins. Be very careful as when you pull it out, the springs may want to cause the pins to leave you forever. Wrap a towel or rag or something around it when you slowly pull it out.

Here is what it looks like without the turn signal housing. I thought I had more phots of the assembly apart, but I lost a bunch of photos off my phone and it looks like I never downloaded them, or never actually took them (mental photos only)

IMG_2013.JPG
 

EWheeler

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Hi Folks,

Newbie here and my Haynes manual is still on its way....

For the last 25 years I've dreamt of owning an FJ or BJ and now I finally own one: a 1970 3-speed with original 1F engine. Fixed the horn and a signal light issue in the last couple of days but this one came up earlier this morning and I'm going to need your help: the threaded rod unthreaded at the steering wheel. Can someone kindly advise steps for getting it rethreaded? Any advice on avoiding a relapse (e.g. orange locktite), greasing points etc.)?

See pic - the threads don't seem stripped at this time.

View attachment 3066311
Some info here too:


 

EWheeler

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If your rubber is wasted inside the shift lever housing, they are available here:

 

65swb45

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I'd advise taking a really good look at the threaded hole in the turn signal switch, and having another turn signal switch on hand before you start. The threaded anchor only rotates back and forth a little bit by design, so it is not likely that it unthreaded.
 
Last edited:
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Pretty sure you can remove the shift rod lever and then re-thread that male end into the turn signal housing. You MAY have to remove the steering wheel and turn signal housing, re-thread the male part into the turn signal housing, and then reinstall. The shift lever removes by depressing two pins. Be very careful as when you pull it out, the springs may want to cause the pins to leave you forever. Wrap a towel or rag or something around it when you slowly pull it out.

Here is what it looks like without the turn signal housing. I thought I had more phots of the assembly apart, but I lost a bunch of photos off my phone and it looks like I never downloaded them, or never actually took them (mental photos only)

View attachment 3066341
EWheeler - thanks so much for your advice! Initially I was going to private message you as I noted on the tech forum that you have posted a lot of advice on this aspect of the vehicle. Just to clarify - its the shift lever that has unthreaded, not the turn signal on my FJ40. I'm assuming that the same approach will apply? When you state the springs "will want the pins to leave you forever" - does that mean that pins could fall back into the housing or just ricochet into your surroudings?
 
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I'd advise taking a really good look at the threaded hole in the turn signal switch, and having another turn signal switch on hand before you start. The threaded anchor only rotates back and forth a little bit by design, so it is not likely that it unthreaded.

65swb45 - good advice: in my case its the threaded shifter rod, but the same would apply right? As an interim measure, if it is slightly stripped, would orange locktite do the trick until I get the new part?
 
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If your rubber is wasted inside the shift lever housing, they are available here:


Yes, thanks and dust firewall housing is torn so I will replace it as well. Thanks again!
 

65swb45

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65swb45 - good advice: in my case its the threaded shifter rod, but the same would apply right? As an interim measure, if it is slightly stripped, would orange locktite do the trick until I get the new part?
No. If you saw a pic of the column disassembled, you would understand why the threaded pin needs to rotate in order for the shift column to do its job.

The pin rotates with the shift column
 

EWheeler

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65swb45 - good advice: in my case its the threaded shifter rod, but the same would apply right? As an interim measure, if it is slightly stripped, would orange locktite do the trick until I get the new part?
Mark is suggesting a new turn signal housing because it is likely that the female threads are toast, which is why your pin pulled out.

A new turn signal switch and housing is less that $100 new from toyota, worth the spend for sure. I posted part number in the thread i linked previously. I had to tap the female threads into my brand new housing, which i document in that thread. Here are some more photos to help you.

197E7F56-212D-4309-AB63-ABCD8AB7107A.jpeg
5FFD3376-0653-4C94-81B6-B28E1764ED76.jpeg
81311C2C-794F-4F12-9CA3-6E0AFA17185F.jpeg
D8EB1E09-DD2A-4966-8E95-2D4444657943.jpeg
FE6DC24B-58B9-4FEA-B9F9-3977BD9CA079.jpeg
F31D3690-F638-45C8-859D-0DB96B08EEE8.jpeg
1281B6C9-B54C-47C0-B9F4-2FAC9E2321DB.jpeg
 

EWheeler

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EWheeler - thanks so much for your advice! Initially I was going to private message you as I noted on the tech forum that you have posted a lot of advice on this aspect of the vehicle. Just to clarify - its the shift lever that has unthreaded, not the turn signal on my FJ40. I'm assuming that the same approach will apply? When you state the springs "will want the pins to leave you forever" - does that mean that pins could fall back into the housing or just ricochet into your surroudings?
Im going to call it the shift rod pin has pulled out of your turn signal housing. Its likely the housing threads are stripped, because the shift lever will not allow the pin to rotate such that it can back out of the threads. You need to #1 remove the shift lever by depressing the two shift lever pins and pull lever out of the receiver, and then see if you can thread the pin back into the housing.

You can see on the photo i posted of a pin above that a previous owner cross drilled through the pin. That was because the female threads in the housing tore out and you have to anchor the end of the pin somehow in order for the shifter rod to properly function.

Here are where the shift lever pins are located

image.jpg
 
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Mark is suggesting a new turn signal housing because it is likely that the female threads are toast, which is why your pin pulled out.

A new turn signal switch and housing is less that $100 new from toyota, worth the spend for sure. I posted part number in the thread i linked previously. I had to tap the female threads into my brand new housing, which i document in that thread. Here are some more photos to help you.

View attachment 3066745View attachment 3066746View attachment 3066747View attachment 3066748View attachment 3066749View attachment 3066750View attachment 3066751

Great pictures and advice for someone who hasn't tackled this before - super appreciate your help here!
 
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Pretty sure you can remove the shift rod lever and then re-thread that male end into the turn signal housing. You MAY have to remove the steering wheel and turn signal housing, re-thread the male part into the turn signal housing, and then reinstall. The shift lever removes by depressing two pins. Be very careful as when you pull it out, the springs may want to cause the pins to leave you forever. Wrap a towel or rag or something around it when you slowly pull it out.

Here is what it looks like without the turn signal housing. I thought I had more phots of the assembly apart, but I lost a bunch of photos off my phone and it looks like I never downloaded them, or never actually took them (mental photos only)

View attachment 3066341
EWheeler -- Great photo! I am original owner of a 1969 (8/68) FJ40. I noted a red reflector or something similar on the passenger door up towards the vent window. I have a plastic grey circle on my doors in they same place (see photo). What is the red circle? Is it original?

1 Door.JPG
 

EWheeler

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EWheeler -- Great photo! I am original owner of a 1969 (8/68) FJ40. I noted a red reflector or something similar on the passenger door up towards the vent window. I have a plastic grey circle on my doors in they same place (see photo). What is the red circle? Is it original?

View attachment 3077759
No, as a matter of fact that reflector was just that - a yellow reflector - stuck over the hole by a previous owner with sticky tape. They used yellow over the hole, and a red one lower on the door towards the back. Not OEM at all. @firemanj92 actually just gifted me some aftermarket replacement "plugs" for those upper holes last week and I got them installed!!!!
 

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