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Old 08-14-2008, 11:01 PM
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RicardoJM RicardoJM is offline
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Default FJ40 Gear Reduction Starter

Yesterday morning I rolled the FJ40 out of the garage to start it up and drive to work. I turned the key and it began to fire up, but did not quite make it. I turned the key again and it was dead to the world.

The truck was always slow to turn over and I had noticed recently that when I turned it off it would continue to putter on for a bit. In the back of my mind I new that someday soon the starter would need to be looked at. Having recently replaced plugs, points, condenser, distributor cap, coil - I was fairly certain that indeed my starter had finally kicked the bucket. A quick test with the multi-meter showed I had good voltage in the battery and power up to the starter. So I rolled it in front of the house and went on in to work in the LX. In the afternoon my youngest son learned how to start by popping the clutch and we put it in the garage. When I asked him if he knew what was involved in starting by popping the clutch - he said "I think so, isn't that what they did in "Little Miss Sunshine""

Today after work, I stopped by the junk yard and found an FJ60 with the gear reduction starter. It took quite a bit of work to get the bottom bolt off because I had left the BFH at home, but I did eventually get the starter removed. After a $22 homage to the cruiser gods ($17 for the starter and $5 for a core charge) I got home with the starter. It was full of gumpta, so after a bit of cleaning in the parts washer here is what I had.


It took a while to get the old starter out out of the FJ40. Due to the large size of the old starter it was a tight fit for the 17mm wrench. Compared to the new starter there is quite a difference in size.


We pulled the battery and took it in for testing to make sure it was still good. It checked out fine and while we were at the store we picked up some new battery cables. It is a little thing, but now I have one red and one black with smooth 1/2" heads and bolts.

Installation of the new starter went real smooth. Due to the smaller size there was a bunch more room to work with. It was a simple matter of bolting it up and connecting the wires. Here is the BoomBoom putting the final touches on the job and securing the battery.


Wow what a difference with this starter. It is much stronger than the old one, the engine kicks right over. I had read about the gear reduction starter from the FJ60 being a big improvement and had my doubts. I am definitely sold on the switch and would recommend it to any of the FJ40 crowd that is in need of a new starter.
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Old 08-18-2008, 09:54 PM
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Azrael Azrael is offline
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I've been considering this. Seems like a cheep enough upgrade. What junkyard did you go to, Jim's?
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Old 08-19-2008, 07:02 AM
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The yard is Colorado Auto & Parts (www.ColoradoAutoAndParts.com) and it is just off Santa Fe, south of Oxford. They have two 60 series trucks there now, but neither of them have the starters anymore. I was out there a month ago and they only had one truck, went back last week to get the starter and the whole engine had been pulled from the truck. I was moping around the yard when I found the second one and snagged the starter off of it.

You might want to call around the yards to see if anyone has 60 series and then stop by and check it out. The upgrade is well worth it and fairly easy to do.
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Old 08-19-2008, 08:34 AM
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MDH33 MDH33 is offline
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You scored! I just replaced the starter in my FJ60 with a new OEM unit and they are $pendy. But Wow what a difference! My old tired starter needed to crank and crank (finally quit) but the new one starts it immediately. I'll be putting one in my 40 as well at some point.
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Old 08-19-2008, 11:17 AM
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put one in the blue pig...it's great! did have to disconnect one wire, but don't remember which one it was.
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Old 08-19-2008, 01:23 PM
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also have one in my cruiser - you're right, makes a world of difference....
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1997 Honda civic DX( all stock DD)
1972 Toyota FJ40(4" lift, FJ60 axles, FJ60 4speed with split case, 35's, Detroit locker rear, Lockright front, Marlin Highsteer, 105"WB, Saginaw with GM tilt column, soon to have: 30spline longfields, inners/outters, toybox.
1967 Porsche 912(100% stock)


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