Tie Rod Ends and Dust Boots - 1969 FJ40

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I had my frame cleaned and painted last summer purely as protection from mag chloride and to make the FJ look new again. The paint shop did an excellent job but I can't tell if my dust boots on the front end got damaged in the process. I could use some experts to tell me (photos attached). For background, my father (deceased) and I are the original owners. I doubt the tie rod ends have ever been replaced. The FJ only has 39,000 miles on it. If the boots are bad, should I replace the boots or should I replace the tie-rod ends at the same time? I do the maintenance work but I usually have to trust a shop to do big jobs.
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Your boots are gone there buddy! They are still available from Toyota but are just shy of $10 each. If your current ones aren't rusty inside and still tight, I'd just replace the boots and grease it up...but...

I just went through this on my 1967 and thought that all were still in good shape. So I bought a set of boots. When it came time to start replacing the boots, I found that my drag link and 1 tie rod were pretty much at EOL. Purchasing those was approaching the cost of the complete made in Japan kit that @cruiseroutfit sells so I ended up going that route. The new kit already has fresh boots.

Upshot is I have a fresh set of boots for later. :p
 
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Your boots are gone there buddy! They are still available from Toyota but are just shy of $10 each. If your current ones aren't rusty inside and still tight, I'd just replace the boots and grease it up...but...

I just went through this on my 1967 and thought that all were still in good shape. So I bought a set of boots. When it came time to start replacing the boots, I found that my drag link and 1 tie rod were pretty much at EOL. Purchasing those was approaching the cost of the complete made in Japan kit that @cruiseroutfit sells so I ended up going that route. The new kit already has fresh boots.

Upshot is I have a fresh set of boots for later. :p
Thank you! This is exactly the kind of advice I was seeking based on experience. You also helped me make another decision. After the paint shop last summer, I took my FJ during the winter to a local shop that used to specialized in FJ40s. The founder and owner sold about two years ago. I didn't want the mess of an oil change in my garage during the winter, so I took the FJ to shop for a simple oil change and lube. They overfilled my engine oil which caused me to discover that the oil pan bolt was extremely over-torqued (I could not break it loose with a come-along!). They supposedly lubed all points in January 2022 and never said a word to me about boots missing. Now I know for sure that the shop is not to be trusted. Too bad; they are local and have been in business a long time. I know, way too much detail, and yes, this is a personal problem.

New question: how hard is it to replace all tie rod ends and the drag link? I have a floor jack and my original FJ40 tool roll but no jack stands and no way to make sure I set the toe correctly.
 

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Thank you! This is exactly the kind of advice I was seeking based on experience. You also helped me make another decision. After the paint shop last summer, I took my FJ during the winter to a local shop that used to specialized in FJ40s. The founder and owner sold about two years ago. I didn't want the mess of an oil change in my garage during the winter, so I took the FJ to shop for a simple oil change and lube. They overfilled my engine oil which caused me to discover that the oil pan bolt was extremely over-torqued (I could not break it loose with a come-along!). They supposedly lubed all points in January 2022 and never said a word to me about boots missing. Now I know for sure that the shop is not to be trusted. Too bad; they are local and have been in business a long time. I know, way too much detail, and yes, this is a personal problem.

New question: how hard is it to replace all tie rod ends and the drag link? I have a floor jack and my original FJ40 tool roll but no jack stands and no way to make sure I set the toe correctly.


i have a big bag of new OEM toyota genuine parts tie rod and relay rod end boots

pm me ill hook you up solid


matt
 
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New question: how hard is it to replace all tie rod ends and the drag link? I have a floor jack and my original FJ40 tool roll but no jack stands and no way to make sure I set the toe correctly.

Well, I did it with the wheels off because I don't have tires yet but you should be able to access everything with your rig still on the ground. This should keep your toe in line as long as you no touchy the steering wheel and do them one at a time or as needed.

It's a piece of cake honestly. These are not like the newer cars that require lasers and mirrors to align toe and camber at all 4 wheels.

This may scare some of you, but I've aligned hundreds of dump trucks rolling around with 100,000+ pounds loaded with this alignment method:

1. Replace what ever.
2. Get the alignment as close as possible visually. Set the steering wheel TDC. Take a good look down the front to back sight line of the rig and make sure that the wheels are straight and if not, adjust the offending side.
3. Jack up the front end.
4. Spin the left tire while tracing a paint line down the center of the tire.
5. Same with the right tire.
6. Lower the jack.
7. Measure the distance from drivers to passengers on my lines on the back of the tire.
8. Repeat with the front side measurement.
9. Compare front to back, and if needed jack it back up, adjust the toe, then repeat the measurements until I was satisfied.
10. Test drive!
 
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Thank you! This is exactly the kind of advice I was seeking based on experience. You also helped me make another decision. After the paint shop last summer, I took my FJ during the winter to a local shop that used to specialized in FJ40s. The founder and owner sold about two years ago. I didn't want the mess of an oil change in my garage during the winter, so I took the FJ to shop for a simple oil change and lube. They overfilled my engine oil which caused me to discover that the oil pan bolt was extremely over-torqued (I could not break it loose with a come-along!). They supposedly lubed all points in January 2022 and never said a word to me about boots missing. Now I know for sure that the shop is not to be trusted. Too bad; they are local and have been in business a long time. I know, way too much detail, and yes, this is a personal problem.

New question: how hard is it to replace all tie rod ends and the drag link? I have a floor jack and my original FJ40 tool roll but no jack stands and no way to make sure I set the toe correctly.
Pretty easy, no jack stands required but will require to turn wheel for better access of some bolts. 17mm & 14mm castle nuts and clamp bolts and tie rod tool which is cheap at any auto store.
 
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Again, thanks to everyone for your help. With only 40,000 original miles on my FJ40 and checking for play in the steering linkage and tie rods, I think I only need to replace/install dust boots on all the tie rod ends. Now, for a stupid question: Will I need to separate/break apart the tie rods to install the dust cover boots and retainer ring? Obviously, I have never replaced tie rods on any vehicle before.
 
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Yes you will have to disassemble the joints to put boots on. With the age of the vehicle it may be better to replace all the tie rod ends instead of having to do it later. Unless you've owned it since new it could have 100 or 200K miles on it.
 
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Yes you will have to disassemble the joints to put boots on. With the age of the vehicle it may be better to replace all the tie rod ends instead of having to do it later. Unless you've owned it since new it could have 100 or 200K miles on it.
I have owned it since buying from the dealer showroom floor, but it has been a long time since that day.
 
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I have owned it since buying from the dealer showroom floor, but it has been a long time since that day.

Since you know the history, if you say the tie rod ends are solid then replace the boots and enjoy it for a few more years.
 
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Again, thanks to everyone for your help. With only 40,000 original miles on my FJ40 and checking for play in the steering linkage and tie rods, I think I only need to replace/install dust boots on all the tie rod ends. Now, for a stupid question: Will I need to separate/break apart the tie rods to install the dust cover boots and retainer ring? Obviously, I have never replaced tie rods on any vehicle before.

Yep, you'll need to separate the tie rod ends. There are various methods, the most common being a pickle fork that usually destroys the boot anyways. You can rent a proper separator tool from Orielly's if that is available to you. Just watch some YouTube videos.

Also, you probably still have the old retaining ring intact, so check and remove it before installing the new boot.

Bonus pics of me changing one of mine. First pic is the old retaining ring.

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Much cleaner look. Before I get called out, no cotter pin yet because I need to do an alignment.
 
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BUY THE TIE ROD END KIT! Worth money given the ones on your rig have served 53 years if they are factory. In separating the joints for the boots you will likely have some serious persuading to do which could damage the joint any way. So, start with the penetrating oil now, order them up and when time comes take measurements of your current alignment (pin to pin in all joints) if you are satisfied with the way it drives and put it back together using the same.
 
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BUY THE TIE ROD END KIT! Worth money given the ones on your rig have served 53 years if they are factory. In separating the joints for the boots you will likely have some serious persuading to do which could damage the joint any way. So, start with the penetrating oil now, order them up and when time comes take measurements of your current alignment (pin to pin in all joints) if you are satisfied with the way it drives and put it back together using the same.
Elfman and others - you have convinced me that I should replace the original tie rod ends instead of just replacing the dust cover boots. I try to order OEM parts whenever I find them available, but tie rod ends to fit my 8/68 (1969 model year) don't seem to be available at least on the sites I normally use. What after market tie rod kits have others used with high satisfaction? FJ Parts sells the Made in Japan 5-piece tie rod kits for $96 and SOR sells theirs (manufacturer unknown) $160. Big price difference. All opinions and advice are appreciated.
 
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Elfman and others - you have convinced me that I should replace the original tie rod ends instead of just replacing the dust cover boots. I try to order OEM parts whenever I find them available, but tie rod ends to fit my 8/68 (1969 model year) don't seem to be available at least on the sites I normally use. What after market tie rod kits have others used with high satisfaction? FJ Parts sells the Made in Japan 5-piece tie rod kits for $96 and SOR sells theirs (manufacturer unknown) $160. Big price difference. All opinions and advice are appreciated.
Cruiser Outfitters. Like em cause they are local to me and good people. Find them at cruiserteq.com
 

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