Saturday, July 16, 2016

Project FJ: Progress and Plight

I am quite happy with the FJ's new stance and aggressive demeanor. As I stated in my last update post, I would like to do a few more things to the truck, mainly a rear bumper as, in my mind, the truck looks "unbalanced," so to speak, with an aggressive aluminum front bumper and the factory plastic rear bumper. So, I believe that is my next modification to this vehicle. I will not even attempt to put a timeframe on that stage of the project, as it could end up being next week or six months from now. Who knows?

Anyway, I have done a couple things to the truck since my last update. Namely, the exhaust and an interior addition that required significantly more work than, I believe, the modification is worth.

I came home from work one day this week and found the package from Springtail Solutions. I had ordered their Straddle Combo package. It is basically a bracket that mounts over the center console. To this bracket, there are a couple small "saddle" bags that mount on each side to provide additional storage. I was pretty excited to install this, as it is a functional modification that is actually useful. I did not expect the headache that ensued as I did the install over the course of the next two days.

In progress…

Some finished shots…

Prior to this install, my iPod would rest in the 4WD shift boot. Now, I have it in the passenger side bag along with the phone charging cord. (I think I should try to track down some black cords.) As I mentioned above, this is a convenient storage solution for the FJ. However, I think if I were to do this again, I would not necessarily follow the provided instructions. I would develop my own mounting method, which would, no question, be easier and less infuriating. That said, I do really like this modification.

Now, another issue arose with the exhaust. I had ordered the stainless steel version of the MBRP system and the distributor shipped the aluminum version. Not the end of the world, I suppose. We decided to install it and I was refunded a few bucks for the cost difference of the stainless over the aluminum. I am not too concerned with the appearance of the aluminum system, as you can barely see the tip. The rest of the system is tucked up close to the chassis. I am also debating applying some high-temperature black paint to it now, as well. The note is perfect. It is not obnoxiously loud, but loud enough to know that it is not the OEM exhaust system. It growls nicely when that gas pedal is mashed. So, although I did not receive the exact product I ordered, I am happy with the exhaust.


Now, I need to force myself to focus some attention on Project Z33.

JDMphasis… Innovation over Imitation

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