My FJ Cruiser story





Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 48
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default My FJ Cruiser story

    Note: I have added a big update in post #43, new tent, new awning, redesigned the drawer system in the back, lots of extra diy items. More updates to follow!

    My first impression of a FJ cruiser was ‘what on earth is that?’ This was while I was visiting my sister in Dubai and saw these odd looking concept cars fly up huge steep dunes as if the dunes were small hills. I grew up camping but at that stage I wasn’t really into 4x4’ing so I thought it was an ugly, impractical, but extremely capable car. A few years passed and when they were eventually seen on the streets of the Eastern Cape I strangely started liking the odd look of this beast. I even looked into buying one second hand but at that stage they were too scares in my area. Then my life suddenly changed. It was early 2016, when I saw a beautiful (how things have changed…) FJ cruiser for sale in Robertson, Western Cape. Long story short, a few days later I owned a beautiful FJ cruiser, delivered to my house in Port Elizabeth.

    LA Sport Port Elizabeth did the following for me:
    (So far I am impressed with everything and I will highly recommend everything on this list, so I’m not going to repeat that for everything)

    1. Front and rear GhobiX bumpers: These bumpers are immensely solid and look great too. They don’t look as big and bulky as some other steel bumpers out there, but yet it is big enough to easily install a big winch into the front bumper.
    2. Stofpad bash plate: Can’t comment much here since I haven’t done any bolder hopping yet, but it seems like the real deal.
    3. 12500p LAS Pro winch: Haven’t needed it yet but this winch sounds like a tractor engine when you operate it.
    4. 16 LED planetron light bar: Extremely bright, use with caution! I always cover it up (with home made cover) until I need the light. I wish everyone can cover their LED bars, then we would have a lot less issues on the streets. – FYI, I did not have any issues in Namibia on our trip (12-28 March 2016) with the light bar covered, and we were stopped at most towns by roadblocks.
    5. Dual battery system and CTEK charger: We added 2x additional hella sockets at the back of the FJ and 1x 12V cigarette socket and 1x hella socket in the front between the driver and passenger seats. The dual battery is a 75Ah and my 60L Engel Combi always had enough power on our nice warm Namibia trip. Battery voltage never went below 12V (I have a battery protect unit that cuts out @ 12V)
    6. Fridge slide: This is just a must, makes camping/packing/life so much easier.
    7. Frontrunner roof rack: I saw a video of a Jeep that was picked up via a frontrunner roof rack by a crane. I can honestly believe this, they are amazing. And no wind noise. Another great thing is a number of extras and fittings this rack can accommodate, pure genius. Yes some of the extras are a bit expensive, so make a few things yourself and post them on the DIY post!
    8. Frontrunner table under the roof rack: Gone are the days of struggling to dig out the table from underneath everything else, or not wanting to dig and rather work on the ground… extremely lightweight, strong and durable. My grandkids will still be using this table, while sitting on their floating anti-gravity chairs…
    9. Eezi Awn RTT: Until a few months ago I thought this was unnecessary. A few weeks in Namibia changes a man’s opinion about life, and gadgets. I’ll make an exception, I will repeat that I’m really impressed with this tent. If anyone wants me to go into more detail just ask, there’s a lot to say.
    10. Eezi Awn side awning: Living in PE makes you always consider wind first before buying something like this. I was amazed how well this awning handled stormy PE wind a few weeks back. WOW
    11. Garmin backup camera: So I caused a few extra blind spots in my car… the factory fitted backup camera in the FJ is rather small so I bought this extra backup camera that connects wirelessly to my GPS unit the moment I switch the car into reverse, now I can have a good view at the back. I’m even considering mounting one on the front of my car, for those times you can only see the blue sky above your car’s bonnet and wish you have eyes in front of your car…
    12. Dual USB ports and switches: Because there is always just too many things to charge. The photo also shows my dedicated switch for the LED light bar, which only comes active when my headlights are on bright. The ‘Zombie Lights’ switch is for my curtesy lights (point #18 below)

    A few things I added myself:

    13. Cargo crate Slide: I use this for all my tools, recovery equipment and spares.
    14. Platform for 4x additional crates and 2 chairs: These crates contain mainly the food and kitchen equipment. The chairs are easily accessible, no more digging. The chairs are also from frontrunner, definitely worth every cent. I added a strip of LED’s on to the platform, makes a nice area light when looking for something in the fridge or crates.
    15. Flat drawer: For all those bulky equipment that has no other place to go
    16. High lift jack and brackets: I had to modify the brackets so that I could fit the jack on to the roofrack even when the rooftop tent was open. Still working on a plan for the spade…
    17. Light in the engine bay: Not really sure why I added this, we all know the song ‘alles loop reg, altyd, reg, Toyota…’ ;-)

    18. Courtesy lights (‘Zombie Lights’) between the rock sliders: Yes I love LED’s, and lights, I have more flashlights than most women have shoes. My first attempt only lasted a few days, those LED strips are not meant to be installed in the open under a 4x4! I then bought silicon pipe at a hardware shop, inserted LED strips in the clear pipe and sealed both ends with a gluegun. So now this 'light tube' is 100% air and water tight. Luckily for me there are support plates between the two rockslider pipes with the exact same diameter hole as the silicon pipe, so I worked the 'light tube' through these support brackets. I used my dome light inside the car as power source so the light tube goes slowly on/off as the dome light does when the car is unlocked/locked or the doors are opened/closed. All the info on the internet I could find was for FJ's from other countries, the wiring in the SA FJ's are slightly different. You need to remove the plastic cover on the front passenger side pillar. There you will find a white/grey'ish ribbon cable with 3 wires you have to tap into. Test with a multimeter which two wires to use. I ran a 2 core cable from the tap in the ribbon cable to the switch I installed, and from there I went out through a grommet under the front passenger seat. The Zombie lights switch is what I use to disable the light tubes if my doors are going to be standing open for a while. It makes a lot of light under and next to the car, helpful to dodge a puffadder or mud pool when climbing in or out at night

    That is in short what I have done so far, but still have a few things in mind to add. I’m back in Detroit for work again, but if there’s any questions I’ll try to answer as promptly as possible.
    I didn’t say much about the car itself because there has been written tons about FJ’s on this forum and the rest of the net. I do love my quirky FJ very much and I’m very happy with it. It’s pure driving pleasure and I hope I can still have countless expeditions into Africa with it. We are already planning our next trip in Botswana for September, can’t wait!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	0.jpg 
Views:	1791 
Size:	163.3 KB 
ID:	402860   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	1.1.jpg 
Views:	1394 
Size:	145.5 KB 
ID:	402861   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	1.2.jpg 
Views:	1369 
Size:	160.1 KB 
ID:	402862   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2.jpg 
Views:	1275 
Size:	163.0 KB 
ID:	402863   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	4.jpg 
Views:	1248 
Size:	159.8 KB 
ID:	402864   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	5.1.jpg 
Views:	1383 
Size:	140.5 KB 
ID:	402865   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	5.2.jpg 
Views:	1349 
Size:	106.9 KB 
ID:	402866   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	5.3.jpg 
Views:	1398 
Size:	99.3 KB 
ID:	402867  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	5.4.jpg 
Views:	1473 
Size:	114.7 KB 
ID:	402868   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	6.jpg 
Views:	1512 
Size:	146.3 KB 
ID:	402869   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	8.1.jpg 
Views:	1259 
Size:	73.7 KB 
ID:	402870   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	8.2.jpg 
Views:	1238 
Size:	212.6 KB 
ID:	402871   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	9.jpg 
Views:	1459 
Size:	140.9 KB 
ID:	402872   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	10.jpg 
Views:	1514 
Size:	155.7 KB 
ID:	402873   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	11.jpg 
Views:	1287 
Size:	137.0 KB 
ID:	402874   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	12.jpg 
Views:	1390 
Size:	138.1 KB 
ID:	402875  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	13.jpg 
Views:	1379 
Size:	146.5 KB 
ID:	402876   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	14.1.jpg 
Views:	1291 
Size:	97.5 KB 
ID:	402877   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	14.2.jpg 
Views:	1138 
Size:	221.5 KB 
ID:	402878   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	15.jpg 
Views:	1233 
Size:	142.3 KB 
ID:	402879   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	16.jpg 
Views:	1152 
Size:	87.9 KB 
ID:	402880   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	17.jpg 
Views:	1231 
Size:	72.1 KB 
ID:	402881   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	CL1.JPG 
Views:	809 
Size:	165.0 KB 
ID:	403362   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	CL2.JPG 
Views:	820 
Size:	256.8 KB 
ID:	403363  

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	CL3.JPG 
Views:	759 
Size:	240.0 KB 
ID:	403364  
    Last edited by MrTolbos; 2018/03/28 at 05:05 PM.

  2. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to MrTolbos For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Honeydew
    Age
    69
    Posts
    261
    Thanked: 15

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Wow! Very nice setup.
    Jannie de Wet
    Pajero SWB

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Fisherhaven
    Age
    48
    Posts
    602
    Thanked: 4

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Nice setup. Really like that ammo box with the drawers. Have you taken the back seat out?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    53
    Posts
    409
    Thanked: 106

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Very nice!
    Would like to see a photo of the inside looking back if possible.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    The Windy City
    Age
    48
    Posts
    15,539
    Thanked: 3002

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Nice! Will look out for you in traffic

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Thanks guys. Initially I didn't want to remove the back seats but the fridge was about 3cm too long to fit. Eventually I made peace with the idea and I'm really glad I did, can get a ton of equipment in the car now. I'm still working on a easy load/unload storage solution for where the backseats used to be. The 4 crates and fridge creates a lot of storage room, so all I really need to pack for a trip is a bag of braai wood, clothes, gas stove, maybe a jerrycan or two on the roof, and I am 99% set to travel where ever.

    Dirk ons kan dalk eendag (in Augustus as ek weer in SA is) ontmoet vir 'n bier na werk? Wil graag 'n paar mense kry om saam met ons deur Botswana te toer
    Last edited by MrTolbos; 2016/11/10 at 02:35 PM.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Oudtshoorn
    Age
    36
    Posts
    42
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Baie mooi Yster. Geniet dit.
    Ek smaak my Pajero

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Dronk-word-baai
    Age
    40
    Posts
    4,921
    Thanked: 53

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Toolbox, I have had my eye on the Gobi kit for a while now.. Now I will get it without hesitation..


    1990 Toyota Hilux - In process..
    The more people I meet the more I like my dog..
    Real 4x4's have splash guards, not sump guards..

  10. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    1,207
    Thanked: 197

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    MrTolbos, jy het omtrent 'n klomp goed gedoen om dinge in die bos gemakliker te maak! Dit lyk great! Geniet jou FJ!

    Ps: Eks nie seker waar ek jou eerste gaan sien nie... maar of dit nou amerikaanse of suid afrikaanse bier is ons moet hom 'n slag weer gaan drink!

    Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    41
    Posts
    4,292
    Thanked: 358

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Very nice write up. Always good to see what others have done to gain ideas. You've given me two which I'm definitely going to get done. 1 Number plate at the back under the handle, cant believe I didn't think of that. 2. Power sockets behind gear lever, that little space is useless otherwise. Also like the USB sockets up front.


    As for space up above... I had my RTT fitted to the rear of the rack (also Front Runner), found it much easier and practical that way. Then in front I had my gas bottles and two ammo boxes with stuff I wouldn't need often in front of the tent. RTT opened up to the passenger side, same as yours to allow my 270deg HeadOut awning to open on the drivers side and move all the way round the back. I then had the spade fitted on the passenger side above the front door (short enough spade to allow RTT to open up) and put the hi-lift jack at the back of the rack. Only problem for you may be the access to your table.


    Enjoy your FJ!
    Ross

  12. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Centurion
    Age
    50
    Posts
    160
    Thanked: 2

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Wow very nice write up and pics. I really like those Gobix bumpers, now you're going to make me spend even more money! Also like the idea of the LED's at the bottom that operate with the dome light. Doing Botswana in June/July but with an offroad trailer to leave the car fairly empty for day trips around camp sites.

  13. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by RMackay View Post
    1 Number plate at the back under the handle, cant believe I didn't think of that.
    Tip: don't mount it too high! Remember to check the gap for your fingers to be able to go into the door handle

    Quote Originally Posted by RMackay View Post
    I had my RTT fitted to the rear of the rack
    LA Sport recommended that I rather mount the RTT in the front for better weight distribution. I have to admit it is not so user friendly having it at the front if you want to stand next to the vehicle to open/close the tent, so what I do is climb on top of the roof rack and do everything from there, its way easier than standing next to the vehicle.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOtherGuy View Post
    Also like the idea of the LED's at the bottom that operate with the dome light.
    All the info on the internet I could find was for FJ's from other countries, the wiring in the SA FJ's are slightly different. You need to remove the plastic cover on the front passenger side pillar. There you will find a white/grey'ish ribbon cable with 3 wires you have to tap into. Test with a multimeter which two wires to use. I ran a 2 core cable from the tap in the ribbon cable to the switch I installed, and from there I went out through a grommet under the front passenger seat. My first attempt only lasted a few days, those LED strips are not meant to be installed in the open under a 4x4! I bought silicon pipe at a hardware shop, installed the LED strip in the clear pipe and sealed both ends with a gluegun. Its been working perfectly since then, 100% water and air tight

  14. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Clanwilliam
    Age
    52
    Posts
    1,457
    Thanked: 305

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Ek hou van jou stoele. Vou lekker klein op. Hoe stewig is dit, koste en waar koop jy dit?Jou rig lyk sommer baie lekker en reg vir die bos!

  15. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by Sandveld View Post
    Ek hou van jou stoele. Vou lekker klein op. Hoe stewig is dit, koste en waar koop jy dit?Jou rig lyk sommer baie lekker en reg vir die bos!
    Dankie man! Ja die idee is om net klere en kos te pak en te ry, los al die kamp goed in die kar. Die stoele is ook van frontrunner, jy sal direk by hulle kan koop of deur plekke soos LA Sport. Ek het myne vir R1200 elk by LA Sport gekoop. Duur maar dit sal jare hou, regtig baie stewig sit ongelooflik gemaklik. Daar is ook 'n dra sak beskikbaar wat 2 stoele kan vat.

    http://www.frontrunneroutfitters.com...der-chair.html

    http://www.frontrunneroutfitters.com...ing-strap.html

  16. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    47
    Posts
    144
    Thanked: 18

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Like!! :-)
    Where did you get the "switch: with the dual USB ports? (It is exactly what I need) Any idea if they are 1 amp or 2 amp USB ports?
    Guillaume
    Guillaume
    Fortuner Epic 4.0 V6 AT

  17. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by Guillaume View Post
    Like!! :-)
    Where did you get the "switch: with the dual USB ports? (It is exactly what I need) Any idea if they are 1 amp or 2 amp USB ports?
    Guillaume
    I bought it via amazon on my previous trip to the states, but I know LA Sport in PE also had a few. Maybe give them a call if you cant find it in your area. The one I got has a 2.1A and 1.2A port according to the description, but its not labelled

  18. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    41
    Posts
    4,292
    Thanked: 358

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by MrTolbos View Post
    LA Sport recommended that I rather mount the RTT in the front for better weight distribution. I have to admit it is not so user friendly having it at the front if you want to stand next to the vehicle to open/close the tent, so what I do is climb on top of the roof rack and do everything from there, its way easier than standing next to the vehicle.


    3/4 of the vehicle's weight is already at the front... Even so if you have a look at where my RTT was on the rack at the back, its weight is still almost middle of the vehicle cause of the shape of the vehicle.


    Have a look through my trip report here if you have time:
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...d.php?t=196853
    Ross

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to RMackay For This Useful Post:


  20. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Port Elizabeth
    Age
    34
    Posts
    579
    Thanked: 600

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by RMackay View Post
    3/4 of the vehicle's weight is already at the front... Even so if you have a look at where my RTT was on the rack at the back, its weight is still almost middle of the vehicle cause of the shape of the vehicle.


    Have a look through my trip report here if you have time:
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...d.php?t=196853
    Thanks Ross, how am I suppose to concentrate on my work after seeing those lekker dessert photos?!

    I've only camped in the RTT twice now for 1 and two nights, the RTT and awning was the last to be added. So far happy with the location but will properly test it in September when we go to Botswana and decide then if we should try it at the back, luckily easy to move.

    So far I have only used 1 tank of petrol with the RTT on top, most of the time with a typical PE wind blowing, and I see no difference in fuel consumption. Did you see any difference after adding yours?

    I see you have a snorkel on yours. On a scale of 1-5, how highly would you recommend it?
    Last edited by MrTolbos; 2016/11/10 at 02:24 PM.

  21. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    41
    Posts
    4,292
    Thanked: 358

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    The RTT definitely makes a difference, depending on vehicle speed and wind speed of course expect anything from 1 to 2 km/litre less.


    Snorkel is probably more a personal thing than anything else, and definitely not a requirement. I've had them fitted to all my 4x4's, if anything its mostly for reduced sand and dust intake. So I'd scale it at 3.5 out 5. My FJ is not a submarine, yet.
    Last edited by RMackay; 2016/05/16 at 05:18 PM.
    Ross

  22. #20
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    47
    Posts
    144
    Thanked: 18

    Default Re: My FJ Cruiser story

    Quote Originally Posted by MrTolbos View Post
    I bought it via amazon on my previous trip to the states, but I know LA Sport in PE also had a few. Maybe give them a call if you cant find it in your area. The one I got has a 2.1A and 1.2A port according to the description, but its not labelled
    Thanks a lot! I will give LA Sport a ring.
    Guillaume
    Guillaume
    Fortuner Epic 4.0 V6 AT

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 21
    Last Post: 2019/07/03, 01:53 PM
  2. Is a FJ Cruiser a Land Cruiser?
    By PotholeDriver in forum Toyota
    Replies: 52
    Last Post: 2015/12/20, 06:36 AM
  3. Replies: 10
    Last Post: 2013/07/07, 09:16 AM
  4. De La Rey Cruiser
    By Bostokkelos in forum The 4x4 Pub
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 2011/03/30, 09:18 PM
  5. Land Cruiser's 60
    By Bogaards in forum Toyota
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 2011/03/08, 11:15 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •