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FJ40 build ideas "bench racing"


King shit of turd island
Feb 19, 2021
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Under the apple tree
Thought I'd elicit the opinions of the commentariat about a future project. I have an early ('66 build date) with no engine/trans/transfer case. It was someone else's parts vehicle that is too solid to part out. It does have the original axles. Someone hacked a fuel tank mounted behind the rear, below the frame I am scrapping. I am currently in the process of getting a bonded title, as the last two owners of this over the last 30 years had no thoughts of ever putting it back on the road, so the title has been misplaced. As such, I'm in the dreaming/part gathering phase at the moment as I don't want to plow precious funds into this that can be used for my other project, a 93 4runner for the family.

I have several thoughts of my own. Tell me why they're dumb (this is the internet, previous sentence is implied).

As well as a Toyota guy, I'm also a Dodge guy. 1) Thinking of putting a Slant 6 (maybye a 318) with a truck 4 speed, 241 RH drop T-case, and Dana 44/60 axles from a 70's 3/4 ton dodge. 2) same drivetrain, using some late 40 series disc brake converted rear, stock front axles of unknown but likely 4.88 gears with a rear spool and front locker of dubious manufacturer. I have never torn these down yet, bought them from someone who cleans out shipping containers and had no clue what they were. 3) I like light rigs, so full minitruck drivetrain except an american V6, or possibly a 3.0L GM marine 4 cylinder (big Iron Duke) 4) same as previous but adapting an Isuzu diesel from a Chevy LUV (i have 5 of these, they were my first several vehicles).

With the exception of the 3.0L iron duke, and the american V6, I have all of these parts. Thoughts?

You don't say what size tires you are going to run.

On my old 75 FJ40, I ran a 5.0L TBI, SM465, and stock transfer case on top of mini truck disc converted front axle and stock rear axle running 4.10 gearing with 35" tires. Got the job done. I would do it again even though the engine was a whopping 170hp:lmao:

I retired it and it is a back burner resurrection project. Axles will be kingpin Dana 60 narrowed to 60wms(Dodge version is simple lop of 7" long side) that will match two of my FJ55 projects:homer: The drivetrain is up in the air. My cheap "freebie" version is a 190hp 4.3L Vortec plus the NV3500 tranny. From there, I would go NWF Blackbox to 80s LC split case all on 35" tires. Plenty of power, plenty of drivetrain strength, and plenty of upgrade paths on the axles.:flipoff2:
I’m running 35’s on my current rig and like them. Maybe 37’s, but that’s probably the limit. For the wheeling I do that is the best combination of height and stability.
Your build sounds pretty effective. Why’d you retire it? Surely you couldn’t get bored with a 40?
Do you have some 25 or 3500 rear leaf springs laying around? A quarter elliptic rear suspension would be perfect!

”light” and 1970’s technology don’t process for me
Your build sounds pretty effective. Why’d you retire it? Surely you couldn’t get bored with a 40?
Not bored but smog issues. It was also standard spring over:

Since suspension was brought up and I forgot, I would do the same setup on my FJ55: spring over using 99 Tahoe rear springs(54") with leaf spring sliders. About as low a spring over as you will find without butchering the frame. Also VERY soft ride.
If you've already got it, the 70s Dodge drivetrain option seems good to me. Most I know around here slap Chevy everything into their rigs, usually because its cheaper or easier to get parts. I've seen a couple now with a Cummins swapped in; one was a 4bt and one a 6bt (obviously neither of these is a lightweight option however).
We all know the only way to built a 40 is with an ls, Atlas, one tons and 43's. :flipoff2:

I'm not that big of a Dodge person, but the Dodge drive train would be different and work just fine.


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