Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I love my FJ. Don't get me wrong. It's a great platform for whatever may float your boat but I was thinking of a few add ons that Toyota should think about doing and this is just my opinion so if it rubs you wrong, then I apologize in advance but again, this is just IMHO. I hit a few off road trails and go camping, hiking and fishing. No cliff climbing or muddin' for me. It's not my bag.

1. Solar Cell Option - If a Scion can integrate solar cells into it's roof panel, when why can't an FJ do it especially when it's seen as the goto SUV for survivability? I would use it more often than my roof rack. Although I have a sunroof, some with the OEM roofrack could integrate cells in the front of the rack where my sunroof is. Push comes to shove, offer a fold up kit that I can strap to the roofrack that drapes down the side. That's what I had to do now.

2. Rear Compartment/Center Console USB and AC/DC port - I mean, my old Highlander had one, why can't the FJ be designed with an OEM port in the rear rather nickel and diming the customer as an add on option? One built into the center console could also give passengers in the rear a few other options in case they wanna plug in a laptop or any portable electronic device.

3. Rear Interior net shelf. When I go camping and stuff I've noticed that there is still ample room to store lightweight stuff by the roof. If you owned a Pelican case you know you can buy these nifty do dad carriers that bolt inside the upper lid. The same can be done here and would increase it's interior storage capability.

4. Pop out rear windows - I know there are a few out there as an add on but I'd like to see the return of those triangle shaped windows we saw as kids on pickups. Even though the windows now aren't triangle shaped but one can design a limited pop out wedge to increase airflow for the passengers in the rear. Or just make some old school roll down windows.

5. Noise reduction of the OEM roofrack. - All I have is the OEM roofrack so I have no idea about the Baja models or any other models. All I know is when I hit about 55 + mph, the rack is singing loudly. Can something be done about this aerodynamic anomaly? Plus why is it that when I drive with both windows down there seems to be a wind tunnel effect even at the lowest speeds? Is it me or have you guys noticed that as well? Everything seems to get blown in rather drift away. Would an air dam help?

6. Stronger roof - I had my 5'7", 127 lb redhead girlfriend assist me by putting stuff on the roofrack one day and she was originally on the rack itself but slipped ever so slightly and touched the roof with her knee. Not to say that she's got sexy knobby knees but it dented the brand new FJ and it broke my heart. I got a suction cup to try to fix it the best I could and it's barely visible now but what the hell? It's designed so I can mount a ladder and a tent ontop to avoid the lions on the Serengeti but it can't negotiate a little weight on the roof? Seems ironic huh?

7. Locking gas cap or fuel door cover - I've written about it before but considering that most vehicles have this simple option, I was surprised that I had to go out and buy a locking gas cap for the FJ. I'd prefer an interior latch to release the fuel door but as austere as the FJ may be, in today's society, I don't think that's asking for too much.

8. Windshield design or aggressive wipers/Short blast screen- I've seen the rants already about the blast shield described as a windshield on our FJ. Sure it looks cool but it also catches anything flying by which is especially noticeable during Florida's mosquito season or infamous love bug season. If the aggressive angle of attack of this windshield cannot be changed then I'd suggest a triple edge wiper system which is more effective than the standard issue wiper, cause you've noticed your FJ's being bug traps too right?

It's also a bit short at times when I'm just looking to see what color the streetlight has changed or not and I'd rather not stop 50 ft short of the stop line. Now I duck a lot and careen my head to the side to see.

What are your thoughts on this? :boohoo:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,658 Posts
Good list, especially #2 and #4. I installed a second battery and added 2 12v plugs to the console, moved the outlet from the back to the passenger side of the front console and wired them to the second battery so you could charge stuff without the vehicle being on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,283 Posts
Regarding the roof rack ,I am not even aware it's up there ...surprised to hear yours is noisey at 55. The wind tunnel effect you mention has to do with the almost vertical windshield and some science around low and high pressure areas..... like a hood scope on a car. I installed a set of smoked window wind deflectors problem gone much nicer in the rain.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,564 Posts
2. Rear Compartment/Center Console USB and AC/DC port - I mean, my old Highlander had one, why can't the FJ be designed with an OEM port in the rear rather nickel and diming the customer as an add on option? One built into the center console could also give passengers in the rear a few other options in case they wanna plug in a laptop or any portable electronic device.
I agree with this. The FJ, in all its glory and capability, comes up short here. However, you can install these yourself for far cheaper than Toyota would charge you.

5. Noise reduction of the OEM roofrack. - All I have is the OEM roofrack so I have no idea about the Baja models or any other models. All I know is when I hit about 55 + mph, the rack is singing loudly. Can something be done about this aerodynamic anomaly? Plus why is it that when I drive with both windows down there seems to be a wind tunnel effect even at the lowest speeds? Is it me or have you guys noticed that as well? Everything seems to get blown in rather drift away. Would an air dam help?
Open the back window a few inches or buy wind deflectors. Search the forum for that particular fix. As for roof rack noise, I haven't heard any myself.

7. Locking gas cap or fuel door cover - I've written about it before but considering that most vehicles have this simple option, I was surprised that I had to go out and buy a locking gas cap for the FJ. I'd prefer an interior latch to release the fuel door but as austere as the FJ may be, in today's society, I don't think that's asking for too much.
How long do you think it'll take a tweaker to pry open up a locking gas door and then pry off the locking gas cap, causing expensive damage in the process? But they won't, they'll just stab a hole in the tank because they're in a hurry, and they know you can't easily siphon gas out of an FJ.

8. Windshield design or aggressive wipers/Short blast screen- I've seen the rants already about the blast shield described as a windshield on our FJ. Sure it looks cool but it also catches anything flying by which is especially noticeable during Florida's mosquito season or infamous love bug season. If the aggressive angle of attack of this windshield cannot be changed then I'd suggest a triple edge wiper system which is more effective than the standard issue wiper, cause you've noticed your FJ's being bug traps too right?
Buy aftermarket wipers with a triple edge.

It's also a bit short at times when I'm just looking to see what color the streetlight has changed or not and I'd rather not stop 50 ft short of the stop line. Now I duck a lot and careen my head to the side to see.
The FJ has a lot of headroom, and the short in height windshield, along with the high dash is the culprit. Nothing they can do about that without a major change in body design. You get used to it.

What are your thoughts on this? :boohoo:
The FJ is a simple, yet well-built vehicle for off-road use. It offers zero in creature comforts and very little else in high technology. That's what the 4Runner is for. With the exception of the perceived weak roof and the windshield design, everything else you've mentioned can be added yourself.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,019 Posts
G'day,

The wind noise of the oem rack can be reduced / eliminated by simply moving the horizontal slats forward or back as needed, till you get it in the spot that makes no noise..

The Aussie model comes with an internal release for the fuel cover, no locking cap, and pretty easy to pry open, but still its a start.

As for the rest, thats why we mod ... cos we can and we have too ...

Cheers
Baz
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
G'day,

The wind noise of the oem rack can be reduced / eliminated by simply moving the horizontal slats forward or back as needed, till you get it in the spot that makes no noise..

The Aussie model comes with an internal release for the fuel cover, no locking cap, and pretty easy to pry open, but still its a start.

As for the rest, thats why we mod ... cos we can and we have too ...

Cheers
Baz
I'll try moving the bars here and there and report the results. :clap:

So it seems that an internal latch is OEM somewhere. Being in law enforcement I'm fully aware that any criminal with enough experience, with enough time with low visibility will be able to defeat most deterrent devices on anything but as it sits, it's a gimme. As in just open the door and siphon me out simple. At least the lock and/or a latch to somewhat secure a fuel access port could be at least a visual deterrent. For example, would a would be thief target the car with the alarm or at least a blinking light that would indicate there was an alarm or the one that is flat out available for the picking with nothing? Locks merely keep honest folks honest.

In regards to the aggressive windshield causing the tunnel effect...I never took into case horizontal wind vortex in mind. I wonder how effective the deflectors would be and wonder if they would work like slats or flaps on a wing?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,019 Posts
G'day,
I look forward to hearing the results of the slats and noise reduction..
I don't know if the internal latch is a Govt requirement here, but yes we get one, the lever sits next to the hood latch under the steering wheel. I agree it makes it safer from honest folk, but then again petrol theft in Australia is nonexistent from a car anyway... get a few not paying at the pump for it ....

I also have oem weather shields fitted both sides, and it does reduce the tunneling ... and is further reduced by the snorkel breaking the air flow before the window .. reducing the punch. As for the windshield / bug collector ... lol, I clean my windshield almost daily - but never with my wipers ... you get used to it ...

Cheers
Baz
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
So far so good. I moved some of my bars back so far and it did help. I'll fine tune a bit more. It just seems most noticeable when I hit the interstate doing about 80 mph but I would assume most racks would resonate a bit more. I will update you all further later in the week. Meanwhile, I'm researching some wind deflectors but don't know if it will really be worth the money when they will only help a little. The horizontal vortices generated by the windshield may be something that I'll just have to get used to and being 6'2" tall and sitting ramrod straight maybe why I don't see stoplights very well. I'll just have to adjust for comfort and practicality.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,163 Posts
So far so good. I moved some of my bars back so far and it did help. I'll fine tune a bit more. It just seems most noticeable when I hit the interstate doing about 80 mph but I would assume most racks would resonate a bit more. I will update you all further later in the week. Meanwhile, I'm researching some wind deflectors but don't know if it will really be worth the money when they will only help a little. The horizontal vortices generated by the windshield may be something that I'll just have to get used to and being 6'2" tall and sitting ramrod straight maybe why I don't see stoplights very well. I'll just have to adjust for comfort and practicality.
This Light In Sight helped me a ton being able to see the stoplights, as I'm 6'4" and no matter how far back I lay the seat I still couldn't see about 80% of the streetlights. Now - no more laying in my passengers lap.
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
This Light In Sight helped me a ton being able to see the stoplights, as I'm 6'4" and no matter how far back I lay the seat I still couldn't see about 80% of the streetlights. Now - no more laying in my passengers lap.
Nice. Interesting product. It turns out they're out of stock and there are none available in Ebay so I'll have to wait it out. Thanks for the link and the heads up. That should help us tall fellas out very nicely.
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Since they haven't got any in inventory, does anyone else make a product like that? I needed one like yesterday.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,954 Posts
Since they haven't got any in inventory, does anyone else make a product like that? I needed one like yesterday.
First time to see this myself...out of all the issues you mention on your list...this rubber necking sideways to see a traffic signal annoys me most.

I will certainly buy this once it's back in stock!

Most things you mention on your list is the most popular issues that Toyota could have offered as a option or thrown in as standard equipment. You figure with Sevin years of production and a huge FJ following you'd think some change would been made?

I guess I really don't mind modding my FJ myself...I did recently purchase solar panels from Northern Tool as they are holding a great sale on Amorphorus high efficiency solar panels. I figure 3 twenty watt panels can go along way in keeping 3 large group 34 deep cycle batteries topped off. I plan to mount them with rubber grommets to the roof slats. :cheers:
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Awhile back ago after the hurricanes hit us in 2004 and I was sitting in my patrol car for the only air conditioning available I had the notion to build a homemade battery operated system for a small room that ran only on D cells, charger pack or solar cells. At first, it was just a battery operated fan with the copper tubing wrapped around it and a small fish pump that was battery operated that siphoned ice water from a cheap small cooler.

Then the project got bigger. I found a small radiator and used the same principles in mind and then although efficient, it drained the batteries faster so I improvised with solar cells. This kept up quite well during the storms that knocked out our power for a day or so. Then I started thinking of a way to maximize ancient evaporative cooling versus conducted cooling within a 6 man tent for those days where it got a bit warmer...

Then both of the ideas came into play. I got the battery operated fan to mount on the top of the tent to blow downwards with the sump cooler but the whole operation is solar powered and continuously charged by the battery cells that I've maintained during the day. With a little help of an engineer, we strapped on a small thermostat so we can maintain a certain temperature during the night. Plus I collected about five emergency blankets and had an insulated cover built for the tent. It's kind of like those solar windshield protector things...it's about the same depth. I have to admit, for a shoe string budget and some creative thinking, one can make some pretty neat stuff for austere conditions.

The greatest thing is that the solar cells and charger that I use for this AC unit can also be integrated into powering up many other things in the field. From laptops, wi-fi extenders, players of all types...the next thing I'd like to build with the FJ in mind is a mount to reuse an old satellite dish as the ultimate wi-fi extender out in the field. If I could get it to rotate, it would look like an old school radar and a legit target of opportunity from the air.
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
First time to see this myself...out of all the issues you mention on your list...this rubber necking sideways to see a traffic signal annoys me most.

I will certainly buy this once it's back in stock!

Most things you mention on your list is the most popular issues that Toyota could have offered as a option or thrown in as standard equipment. You figure with Sevin years of production and a huge FJ following you'd think some change would been made?

I guess I really don't mind modding my FJ myself...I did recently purchase solar panels from Northern Tool as they are holding a great sale on Amorphorus high efficiency solar panels. I figure 3 twenty watt panels can go along way in keeping 3 large group 34 deep cycle batteries topped off. I plan to mount them with rubber grommets to the roof slats. :cheers:
I just spoke to the company. They said the the particular 3M plastic was no longer available in the US so they had to negotiate a foreign supplier. They told me that at the very least, we should check back again in mid June to see if they are available.

:clap:
 

·
Forum Gunsmith
Joined
·
4,937 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Just as a heads up (no pun intended) I spoke and ordered my LightInSight Fresnel lens today. It seems that they are up and running again.

For those that don't know what we're talking about here's the scoop. If you're taller than 6' like me you know that our FJ's line of sight is a bit low to properly see stoplights when you're stopped at the light. Instead of bending down to see the light, this lens will adhere to the top inside of the windshield and will let you see the light without bending over.

Here's the website; https://lightinsight.webfeatsecurity.com/work.aspx
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top