FJ40 Rebuild

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


body (before)

Since the mechanical work is wrapping up, it was time to start dealing with the body. The fastest and easiest way to strip the old paint and rust was to have the whole thing media-blasted. I loaded up the tub, fenders, doors, and a bunch of small parts and took them out to AZ Pro-Strip in Mesa - the same guy who sandblasted my frame several months ago and did a great job. All Loaded Up

I dropped of all of the parts on Monday and Patrick had them ready at the end of the week. At the Sandblasters

Patrick did a great job and I am very happy with the results. Most of the tub looks pretty good, actually better than I had originally thought. After Sandblasting

  After Sandblasting

  After Sandblasting

  After Sandblasting

Also had him do the doors, front bib, bezel, ... Sandblasted Parts...

... fenders, side aprons, transmission hump, door frames, running boards, pedal assembly, ... More Sandblasted Parts...

... and a whole pile of small parts. I didnt have him do the windshield frame since I didnt want to mask off the glass and rubber and the metal and paint on there is in great shape. Also didnt have him do the hood because mine is pretty banged up and I will hopefully be getting a different one. Last of the Sandblasted Parts

Of course, along with the good, there is plenty of bad. The driver's side floorpan is the worst spot of all. The floor is completely rusted through with a big hole in it. The previous-previous-owner had put a thick layer of tar over the hole and covered it up with a piece of plastic that he riveted to the old rusty floor. Driver's Floor, Complete with Hole

  Driver's Floor - View From Below

The rust also continues forward and backwards, creeping up the floorboard towards the firewall, and extending underneath the factory toolbox. Driver's Floor - The Rust is Spreading

  Driver's Floor - More Holes

The passenger-side floor is starting to go as well, but luckily it is a much smaller area. The shallow pan where the gas tank sits is perfect, and the rust does not extend forward past the seam where the floor meets the bottom of the firewall. Passenger's Floor - Starting To Go

The driver's side rocker panel had more rust than I originally noticed. Before the sandblasting, I thought that side was pretty solid. However, as you can see, the metal was thin and weak from the rust, both on the inside and outside. Driver's Side Rocker Panel - Outside

  Driver's Side Rocker Panel - Inside

The passenger-side rocker panel has a hole about the size of an orange along the rear edge. The small triangular brace that supported the rocker panel to the floor on the underside was completely rotted as well. Passenger's Side Rocker Panel

And finally, what FJ40 rust-review would be complete without including the rear quarter panels. Both sides are toasted, and the ends of the rear sill that support the quarterpanels is also pretty bad. Luckily, the rear sill under the bed is in fair shape. Rusty Rear Quarter Panel

  Rusty Rear Quarter Panel