FJ40 Rebuild

Wednesday, February 01, 2006


front end

Now that the engine was running, we decided to move on to something else. I had ordered up a set of 4x4 Labs steering arms from Luke Porter and had been planning on rebuilding the front knuckles when I installed them. Because I installed my steering box a little lower than most, I was able to use the stock flat Astro pitman arm. Only problem was that the stock pitman arm has four indexing teeth on it so that it can only be installed at 90° increments. I broke out the triangular file and filed the indexing teeth out so that I could mount the pitman arm in the correct position. New Steering Arms, Tie-Rod, and Draglink

I knew that the knuckle rebuild was going to a messy job, but I also thought it was going to be complicated. In actuality, it turned out to be pretty easy. We tore down the first side really quickly, and the most time-consuming part was cleaning up the years of caked-on crud that covered everything. Knuckle All Torn Apart

  Knuckle All Torn Apart

Once everything was cleaned up, it was time to re-assemble everything. One the first side, the bearing pre-load was too high with the original shims and the new steering arm, so we had to pop it off and add a shim. Oops, now it was too loose, so we popped it off one more time and used the thinnest shim I had. We put it back together and the bearing preload was just perfect. The second side was a breeze after doing it once already. Knuckle All Done

  Knuckle All Done

The 4x4 Labs steering arm on the passenger side was just barely hitting the shock when turned to full lock. I could have adjusted out the steering stops a little more, but just to be safe, I removed a little bit of metal so that the arm would clear without problems. Steering Arm Modification

  Steering Arm Clearance

When it was all said and done, I was very pleased with the outcome. My draglink is almost perfectly paralell to the ground vertically, and almost paralell to the tie rod horizontally. Tie-rods

With the front end all finished, I decided to install the new front bumper. Looks pretty good if you ask me. Front Bumper

  Front Bumper