My Toyota LandCruiser FJ60

FJ60
I drive a 1985 Toyota 4WD LandCruiser FJ60 with a 2F, 4.2L, 6 cylinder carbureted engine.

Chapter 0: A Return to Sanity

[185,000 miles] I bought this FJ60 to replace my 2005 Chevy truck. In a sense, I knew that I could trust Toyota mid-80s offerings, as a result of my experience with the greatest vehicle I have ever owned. My story with this FJ60 starts with 185,000 miles on the odometer in October 2010.

I bought the truck on eBay for $4500 from a guy in Arkansas, flew to Little Rock on a one-way flight, and drove it back to Wisconsin (apart from some shenanigans with a faulty fuel pump installed by the seller, I had no trouble). The drive back north was through some very pretty parkland I had not been in before.

This vehicle is awesome.

Chapter 1: Punchlist

Because my goal is to reduce the amount of time I spend maintaining automobiles, I had Gary's Auto do a complete check and compiled a punchlist of things to fix or improve as part pf the deal. My goal was to directly swap my doomed Chevrolet truck for this one. I sold the Chevy for $8200, which leaves a budget of $3700 to spend on the improvements. I added a $650 allowance for new tires, since I would have to have purchased new tires for the old vehicle as well, leaving me $4350 to spend.

[190,000 miles] Here's my punch list after the first 5000 miles I've owned the vehicle. Currently, as of June 2011, I've spent $3517.17 and 22 hours of my own labor on top of the $4500 purchase price to arrive at an excellent and reliable vehicle.

Item My Parts cost My Labor (hours) Shop Cost Notes/External source
EXTERIOR
Land Cruiser



$4,500.00 Joey in Arkansas
Inspection



$126.00

Gary's Auto
Passenger rear view mirror - replace

$27.00

0.1


SOR

Install 2" receiver hitch

$45.00

0.2


Acme hitch + Hopkins socket

Rechrome rear bumper

$40.00

3.0

$325.00

Badger Metal Finishing, Milwaukee, plus $40 bolt set from SOR.

Passenger side rear wheel well (rust seal)


2.0


Naval jelly and sandblast, fill and paint. The rear right well can fill with water due to the gas filler hose opening. Also sealed this using a rubber pipe cap and some fabrication to create a grommet for the filler pipe.

Tires - replace (Stock 235/75-R15, use 31x10.5-15)

$556.02


$124.04

Gary's Auto mounting + disposal

Rear liftgate - struts replaced or repaired

$35.00

0.5


eBay store

Headlights - replace

$32.00

0.3


AutoZone - Sylvania halogens

Replace running lights

$25.00

0.5


rock auto

Clean and paint windshield wiper metal surfaces


0.5


Rustoleum black semi-gloss I had on hand

Rear wiring harness repair


1.0


Untangle and re-wire existing trailer module

Horn - repair


0.8


Raise horn pad wiper ring with hot glue

Fix rear window washer

$3.90

2.0


Replaced washer hose from rear headliner back, dissassembled rear washer motor mechanism, cleaned, re-greased and added water grommet fabricated from oogoo.

Fix headlight windshield washer

$4.99

0.5


Amazon: Scan-tech version of broken check valve, not an exact fit but can be made to work.

Adjust hood front catch/bumpers

$5.00

0.5


Fabricate new bumpers with oogoo


CHASSIS

Replace all shock absorbers / mounts



$464.56

Gary's Auto - W0133-162{1452,1148}

Front end alignment



$105.00

Gary's Auto - with tire replacement

Inspect front and rear brakes



$787.19

Gary's Auto - replace rotor, calipers, pads and lines in front


INTERIOR

Add 12V power receptacles

$15.00

0.1


JC Whitney plus some remanufacture to increase USB power to 1A, permanantly wire into higher-amperage supply line.

Add seat belts to rear bench seat

$144.61

4


Seatbelt Planet, the 1985 FJ60 already had the pillar mounts tapped, this is an easy job.

Clock/thermometer

$12.00



Random internet vendor

Add interior lights

$22.00

1


JC Whitney with some careful addition of a ceiling mounting plate affixed to the metal roof (inside) with JB weld epoxy.

USB/SD/Aux Stereo

$40.00

2.0


Dual-XR4110 mechless

Audio amplifier and rear speakers

$12.00

0.8


Angle bracket, hardware, wire, I had an old 120W amp and speakers from my ancient Chevy Citation

Clean, repair, grease window regulators and locks


1


Take doors apart, clean all internal parts, grease and re-assemble. Remove metal clip on right rear door added by previous owner.

Floor mats

$70.00

0


JC Whitney - new in front, re-use rear

Add rubber dampers to rear seat clips and vibrations


0.1


Fabricate from oogoo

Fix or replace cruise control




Removed obtrusive wiring from aftermarket add-on. This is a low priority - long term hobby project perhaps


ENGINE

Fuel pump - replace



$252.86

Gary's Auto

Replace choke control knob and cable

$70.00

0.5


CruserParts.net for the cable and electrical assembly, plus a knob fabricated from a leftover cabinet knob and some oogoo

Measure compression



$126.00

Gary's Auto - all OK = 145,151,142,152,146,149

Replace hardened vacuum lines and hoses

$12.00

1.0


AutoZone stock item

Replace air intake duct

$20.00

0.2


JC Whitney generic duct hose, with some fabrication to make it fit

Chapter 2: Reversing the Hacks

[189,000 miles] I had noticed a little bit of noise coming from the cooling fan, just a slight tic-tic-tic. It gradually got a bit louder and I did not check it out in time. The bolts on the waterpump had not been properly tightened (perhaps in the radiator replacement done before I owned the vehicle). As I drove home from work one fine March day, the cooling fan sheared off the bolts and jumped into the radiator frame. My FJ60 overheated but not until i was just pulling into my garage. I had to replace the waterpump, cooling fan, and then the alternator after I soaked the original one in coolant trying to refill the system. (It dried out and started working, but was a bit flakey so I figured just replace it, not very expensive for peace of mind.) The waterpump bolts are tricky to tighten, and the previous installer had botched it.

[192,000 miles] My A/C compressor jammed, and this led to a bit of an odyssey. In the end, the root cause was a modification made to the A/C amplifier PCB before I owned the vehicle. One more hack removed.

[194,000 miles] My clutch master cylinder gave out. I rebuilt it with a special low-price "closeout" kit from Rock Auto, and then had an odd problem with the clutch pedal getting stiffer and stiffer as I drove, then eventually engaging the clutch without any pedal pressure at all. Turned out that the rebuild kit has a center pin that is 1-2mm too long, causing the valve to the reservoir never to open. A slight modification of the pin by adding a small metal band around the pin end inside the spring assembly fixed this condition.