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Fathernaut's Land Rover Project

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Oooooooh yes!


This project has been ongoing for the past 3 years now.


The vehicle in question belongs to my parents and is a 1956 Land Rover Series 1. Ex-RAF fire brigade!


My parents bought it in the 1970s and it was last taxed in 1991, so it's been sitting a while... The chassis did the usual Land Rover thing of deciding it didn't like being structurally solid and thought rotting away would be much more fun.


Chassis has been replaced with a galvanised unit, and we're currently in the rebuild process. Have been for a while, mind.


I'll try to post photos in chronological order.



Looking in a sorry state, especially after having had a headlight repurposed on a Series III we used to use as a farm workhorse.



Towing bar attached to the tractor's bucket so we could drag it into the other shed to begin dismantling.



Another angle of the towing bar.



The last tax disc on it!



Let the games begin...


























































I would also like to put a request out to anybody who can help. As you can see from the photos, this vehicle's civilian numberplate is 754 FUL, but does anybody know how we can found out its military numberplate?











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That's nice, I really like that. With regards to finding the military number plate I'm guessing there isn't a plate anywhere that has the NSN and EAC. These usually have the military reg no. stamped on them. If you have the chassis number it might be worth contacting the RAF museum at Hendon to see if they have any information in their archives. I think the Army also have quite an extensive archive of vehicles. That might be worth a shot too.

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That's nice, I really like that. With regards to finding the military number plate I'm guessing there isn't a plate anywhere that has the NSN and EAC. These usually have the military reg no. stamped on them. If you have the chassis number it might be worth contacting the RAF museum at Hendon to see if they have any information in their archives. I think the Army also have quite an extensive archive of vehicles. That might be worth a shot too.


Well I've forwarded this suggestion to my dad, see if he can make use of this info. It could be worth a shot!

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The Mythical Autoshite Landrover.


From the Autoshite Lexicon thread.

D701 SWL -- Legendary Land Rover which can be claimed by anyone, to have been bought at any time in the past, present or future, by their relative of choice. For example: “I bought a Defender 110, reg. no. D701 SWL in two years' time, brand new, from the previous owner who was my dad, but he didn't actually own it because it was brand new. Or it will be, in 2 year's time. PHACT.â€

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  • 3 weeks later...

Today, I helped my dad bleed the brakes. Not only was I bleeding the brakes, but my eagle eyes were spotting various leaks that were preventing us from building up pressure.

I picked up on all three unions on the t-piece on the rear axle, and the unions going into each of the rear drums leaking. After we nipped all them up the brake bleeding went a lot better!


Also, I now have a tripod for my camera. Time for some slightly less* shit photos.




Cylinder head.












This is the brake light switch. Fathernaut says it's not the original type of brake light switch, as this one is hydraulic.






The front of the shed / workshop.




The Land Rover area of the shed.

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  • 2 months later...

Can't wait to see this one back together. My brother completely rebuilt his 90 after getting ideas working with another Landie mate on rebuilding his. I've got a photo somewhere of him sat on the rolling chassis, being towed a couple of miles down the road! Fingers crossed you manage to find out some more of its history.

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Awesome quality work. loving that shed


I have two 1972 Range Rovers that I am about to start this treatment on :D am suitably inspired


Did Fathathestags IIa chassis swap a few years back over a long weekend three of us working on it to get from this




to this




It still needed bulkhead work to get it MOT ready but what a larf


Chassis was caked in Devon cow shit over patches over patches




The old chassis collapsed under its own mass when we dropped it to the deck


This was end of day two with uncle Ian "Shinyfings" going a bit CDO (OCD alphabetically arranged)




The chassis cost us slightly more than the beer and curry consumed over the three days 


Shinyfings wanted to go all "like new" on the job but that would have been a shame as it was and still is very much a working vehicle.



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My first car was very similar to this - an ex-RAF S1 in the xxx FUL registration series.   According to this thread, that means it was decommissioned in 1963, and the ex-MIlitary Land Rover association might be able to help find the original number.  (Bet their club meetings resemble a camouflage fetish party though!).


Mine seems to have been plate-raped some time ago and I suspect it no longer exists.  It had a good chassis, but ropey bodywork, which would have made it a good candidate for use as a trialler at the time I sold it (1986).  It also had a 2286cc SIIa engine which had been souped up by a chap in Rochester who turned out to be quite well known for it in Landy circles and was surprisingly sprightly - too fast for the brakes, anyhow.  


It also had an unusual main gearbox with quite deep fins in the casting.   I don't even think it was a Rover gearbox; no idea what it was.  


This one looks great, though - I'd love to have another S1.

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  • 3 months later...

I took some arty farty wanky photos today to try and capture the ambience of the project.



















In terms of actual progress, here's a shiny new bulkhead with holes now drilled in it to fit it to the uprights on the chassis. That shade of blue is not the final colour. It's some straight-to-galvanised paint Fathernaut bought in the wrong shade of blue, so he's using it as primer then painting over the top with the correct (darker) shade of blue.



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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 years later...

This thread has been a bit dead of late.

We've been working on the engine. Yesterday we made some significant progress.

We started with this, after lifting in the crankshaft:




Then put in the pistons, complete with new split pins:




After that was the camshaft. Yes, it's in the block. The camshaft and exhaust valves are in the block, with pushrods running up into the head to operate the intake valves.




Then, those previously mentioned exhaust valves, plus rockers:




This was how it looked at the end of the day (about half 8 last night):


With the engine the correct way up in that photo, you can see that the head sits on an angle.

It's all timed up now as well. So in theory when the head is put on and the pushrods connected, the intakes will all be timed up too.


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  • 4 months later...


Since I last had a look, Fathernaut has put some more bits on the engine. He reckons he just needs to set the tappets and get the covers on now.


The next step after that is to fit it in the chassis! He has a fun plan that will require my assistance. Namely, to fit the entire drivetrain and steering column to the bare chassis, then tow it up and down the farm track to get the oil circulating before firing it up. It sounds both insane and highly amusing at the same time...

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  • 1 month later...

Progress was made yesterday.

First, the gearbox was taken outside, out of the way:



This meant we could take the chassis off the saw horses and place it down on the floor:



Since it was a rolling chassis, it needed steering:




Now that it was rolling and steering, the next stage happened:






But wait, there's more! Then the gearbox was taken back inside:



Then inserted:



How it stands now:


I think the next stage is connecting up the prop shafts and filling the engine / gearbox / diffs with fluids then it was suggested that we tow it around with the tractor while it's in gear in order to circulate the fluids...

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Wouldn’t it be simpler to prime the oil pump with Vaseline, then remove the plugs & spin it on the starter?   Or am I missing something? 

Tow dragging it seems a strange way to get it lubed up, with communication difficult if things don’t go right/ go wrong? 

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