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Land (Rover) Reclamation or (Land R)over the Hill!


warch

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Car insurance is totally broken in this country, insurance used to mean you'd put all put money into a big pot and then when something bad happened there was money for you to fix the problem. Now you pay money to join the insurance club, when you actually try and use the insurance they inflate your claim with crazy hire car charges between themselves. You end of paying back this money in the form of increased premiums for the next five years as you had a claim and therefore their 'statistics' prove you're a higher risk given them the excuse to charge you more. The real reason for this is to further increase their profits by putting people off trying to use the service they have been paying for. My OH's car was smacked, at the end of the claim I got sight of the hire car bill, it was over four and half grand! 

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  • 5 weeks later...

I’ve actually been using my Landrover. 
 

First off went down to the recycling centre where it broke down and wouldn’t restart. Luckily the recycling people were most helpful and said I could store it there and they’d get someone to run me back to mine if I couldn’t fix it. Then they had a rummage around in their car battery department and brought me a sodding great Varta still holding a charge which fired it up straight away. Result! 
 

Then I popped around to a mate’s house where we are doing some major automotive surgery, changing the bulkhead on a Td5 110 crewcab. This is the galvanised replacement below,

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The bulkhead on these is a lightweight largely single skin pressing. It wasn’t actually as much work as I thought to change it and it was interesting to see how similar the design was to say a late Series 3 Landrover of the early 80s. That said, a major issue was the amount of wiring, I can’t believe how much this needs compared to its predecessors. At least it’s all in multi plugs not bullet connectors. 

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  • 3 months later...

I’ve been actually using my Landrover. It’s currently leading a slightly dishonourable existence as a tip run vehicle, with at least one trip to deposit the bent and broken bits from the crash I had last year.

I have mended a few little annoying niggles like the fly open doors, both of which needed the catches moving. I have also altered the throttle return mechanism so the throttle returns closed and not a quarter open which was annoying if not dangerous and straightened the linkage (also bent in the crash).  It now works properly but has a really heavy throttle which should help economy especially at £1.55 a litre.
 

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Spent a happy hour and a half gang mowing the cricket pitch in preparation for the new season. The task was complicated due to the lack of one of the mower barrels and the Landrover’s bloody awful turning circle. But nothing broke, or went on fire. I did decide to run with the tailgate off so I could see what the implement was doing which was a good idea but did fill the rear tub with freshly cut grass.

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  • 4 months later...

Thread update. 

My Land Rover has been out and about actually doing some miles (250/300 a week) including daily motorway journeys where I got some funny looks (the only other classic cars I saw were an old VW T25 and an unbelievably cool Citroen Mehari. Speaking of cool, it has been anything but with 30 degree plus temperatures. My brakes were also showing worrying signs of binding and then locking on when the brakes were applied, especially coming down one of South Wales's steepest inclines. This needed rectification, especially as the brake pedal was edging closer and closer to the floor upon each application.

 

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Having nursed the old girl home, I decided the brake master cylinder was bollocksed so I ordered a seal kit. I also decided a very soft flexible hose to the rear axle also needed changing, and whilst I was at it decided to change the offside rear wheel cylinder. Shit almost immediately got real. I had no difficulty changing the wheel cylinder which I already had, but the flexible hose I had been sent was the fitment for a Land Rover Discovery. No biggie. More seriously removing the master cylinder damaged a steel pipe running to the reservoir, and the master cylinder itself was unserviceable because the nut on the back was apparently welded in place so I couldn't dismantle it and replace the seals. More delays.

Happily I managed to find a replacement master cylinder using the part numbers for a LWB Landrover (the two types are interchangeable apparently) and ordered a new one from my local stockist (£35 or thereabouts). The one they sent was identical to my existing one but about 20% larger. However it fitted, the pipes fitted (including the new reservoir pipe which I bought off ebay for a fiver) and I was back in business, apart from the small matter of bleeding the entire braking system through. 

For this I decided to get serious and purchased a Bluespot brake and clutch bleeding kit for the knockdown price of 18 pounds. This is compressor driven, you simply crack a bleed nipple fit the attachment and it sucks all the air out. To be fair it did work very well, especially once I'd worked out that you start at the farthest wheel cylinder and work inwards. I now had a reassuringly firm brake pedal, and crucially there was absolutely no binding or locking from the brakes, which given how much more sprightly the thing feels must've have been locking on quite badly. 

As mentioned elsewhere my old and two drive Qashqai surprised everyone by deputising for the Landy whilst it was being mended and failing to get stuck or ground out whilst climbing a very steep off road route to the top of a Welsh hillside. The key to its success is the early model has very low gearing so you can creep up a hillside in first without breaking traction or stalling. 

In other news I also took the family and the dog on a camping holiday to Mid-Wales where I immediately became the coolest person at the campsite. 

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How is it coping with the high ambient temperatures? Mine is fine in terms of engine temperature, but twice in 30°C+ weather I've had a vapour lock.  Both times after a run, and doing a lot of low speed stop/start work, when I guess very little fuel was flowing.

Had to fill the fuel filter from a jerry can to get the engine started, then it operated the fuel pump fast enough to pull fresh stuff through.

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8 hours ago, mat_the_cat said:

How is it coping with the high ambient temperatures? Mine is fine in terms of engine temperature, but twice in 30°C+ weather I've had a vapour lock.  Both times after a run, and doing a lot of low speed stop/start work, when I guess very little fuel was flowing.

Had to fill the fuel filter from a jerry can to get the engine started, then it operated the fuel pump fast enough to pull fresh stuff through.

Interesting. I’ve twice had minor running problems, where it behaved as if there was crap in the idle jet so it would stall or die at idle or low revs. It would immediately clear and then work perfectly once I’d restarted it but it was a bit disconcerting on a busy roundabout just off the M4. 
 

I did slightly reposition the fuel line between the lift pump and the carburettor so there was more clearance above the engine and the manifolds but I don’t know if that made any difference. I think E10 fuel may be the issue here, quite a few classic bike owners are reporting similar issues.

 

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Gone all arty for this timeless shot taken whilst scrumping for horseshit. I think I went a bit overweight on the stuff because it took hours to unload afterwards, but it’ll reinvigorate my garden. The new brakes coped well with the steep hills between the stables and my place which was a relief. I also passed a lovely early 50s Series One in the village.

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  • 1 month later...

My Landrover had mysteriously gained a brake fluid leak somewhere. A dribble of fluid down the inside of the n/s front wheel gave me a fair indication that this was the offending article (the only wheel cylinder I hadn’t changed). I’ve bought a new wheel cylinder and also found a nice new flexible hose to go on. 

Before I did this I also noticed that it was becoming increasingly difficult to change gear. Adjusting the clutch linkage didn’t improve matters and the clutch slave cylinder seemed  a bit stiff, so I thought I’d change this first. You can change this without taking the driver’s side floor up but I thought I’d make things easy for myself. The actuating rod for the clutch was on the wonk but still adjusted ok. All back together and bled through with my vacuum bleeding kit and it seems much better. Doing jobs under a Landrover in the winter is to be avoided so I was glad to sort this so easily.

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  • 2 months later...

General round up;

Land Rover; Drove it the other day, the clutch and brakes worked properly. The new clutch slave cylinder allowed (relatively) smooth unobstructed gear changes. The brakes needed adjustment but worked properly and didn’t stick on as they had done previously. The combined reservoir doesn’t seem to have lost any fluid. Other than that it runs really well and started fine even when it was -8. Did really well this year and managed long journeys without issue even in the heatwave.
 

Triumph Speed Triple; Needs new fork seals (MoT advisory) and a new chain. Finally solved the horrible steering feel which was down to a dry lower headstock bearing. I fitted a new clutch cable today as the old one snapped. Look forward to using it next year as I hardly used it last year despite the bike friendly summer, and having renewed the brakes including two new calipers. 
 

Nissan Cashcow; Took an absolute shitload of punishment, including driving up a mountain and ending up with a herd of cows rubbing up against it and licking it. Fitted new suspension and steering arms and rear tyres for the MoT (now have a testing centre a minutes walk from my house) and fitted a new drive belt. Just serviced it last week. One of the most hated cars on here but so versatile and usable, can do anything,  even off road stuff and tough as old boots. Nice and easy to maintain too. 
 

 

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This afternoon I had the pleasure* of working on my semi-employer's "restored" Series III 1974 pickup.

Well it's restored enough to look good in photos, but today we tackled the u/s heater levers and cables.

I said, "this is more like archaeology than mechanics" as we tried to prise apart the lower console. Got there in the end but it's a rusty mess. New cables will fix it.

That feckin instrument panel though! I had to do the speedo cable recently and it was a rat's nest of unlabeled wiring.

I was imagining Japanese engineers tearing a LR down and scratching their heads - "why did they do it that way?" And lo! the Land Cruiser was born.

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I ran a 1968 Ser 2a for almost 20 years and I had a couple of Ser3 during that time. The Ser 3 seemed to need more chassis welding all the time and despite the fact they had very little electrics they were always having 'troubles'.

Best thing I did with the Ser 3s was pull the overdrive off one and bolt it into the Ser 2a (then took it London > Limoges > London with a cross channel Hovercraft) - fun eh?

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7 hours ago, warch said:

Land Rover; Did really well this year and managed long journeys without issue even in the heatwave.

Yeah yeah, rub it in why don't you :lol:

7 hours ago, grogee said:

That feckin instrument panel though! I had to do the speedo cable recently and it was a rat's nest of unlabeled wiring.

Not to mention the sharp edges and pointy screws to catch your hand on! What brand of cable did you go for, and is it working OK?

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14 hours ago, grogee said:

I was imagining Japanese engineers tearing a LR down and scratching their heads - "why did they do it that way?" And lo! the Land Cruiser was born.

Yes I’m not much of a fan of the later Series 3/90/110 cladded dash and control arrangements, the earlier metal dash design is much simpler (primitive?), the only cable operated mechanism on mine is the choke. That said, I’d love to see Matt’s Series 3 because it looks like it looked when it was built not how it looked after 50 years of amateur repairs and additions to the loom. 
 

I was interested to read that the very first Land Cruiser was derived from a Japanese copy of a Willys Jeep and was built in 1950, so was a parallel evolution of the Landrover which was designed around the same time and also based on the Jeep. I think the 1960s Landrover is comparable in quality to the Japanese rival, both are very good designs and have unique selling points, the LC has much better engines, especially for road use, older Landrovers are much less rust prone especially in wet climates, where Land Cruisers never lasted very long.

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7 hours ago, mat_the_cat said:

Yeah yeah, rub it in why don't you :lol:

Not to mention the sharp edges and pointy screws to catch your hand on! What brand of cable did you go for, and is it working OK?

Don't know and don't know. Semi-employer bought it probably from Rimmers. We haven't actually driven the car anywhere since I fitted it.

I do remember it was a bastard to get through the bulkhead and I broke the plastic housing forcing it through. With hindsight (!) I should have fed it through from the dash side maybe?

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7 hours ago, mat_the_cat said:

Yeah yeah, rub it in why don't you :lol:

I probably should have put ‘managed long journeys without issue*, even during the heatwave’. 
 

I didn’t actually have any FTP but I a stalling problem at idle on the M4 at rush hour wasn’t relaxing even if it did immediately restart. 

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51 minutes ago, warch said:

That said, I’d love to see Matt’s Series 3 because it looks like it looked when it was built not how it looked after 50 years of amateur repairs and additions to the loom. 

Just 2 years of amateur repairs and additions! I've added things like a fog light, HRW and rear wiper, as well as replaced a few of the spade terminals behind the dash. 

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That said, I'm following the route of the original loom, and matching the Land Rover wiring colours. The wiring behind the dash still looks very haphazard though!

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  • 2 months later...

Motoring update. 
 

I’ve actually been somewhere on my motorbike. I found a warm day in Feb to run out to the office and back. It’s still got a weird starting issue where it doesn’t fire up straightaway. Not sure what it is, might be fuel related. 
 

My Landrover has been out playing in the snow, as shown in the OMG Sno Kaos thread. I’ve also used it collect another British legend, renowned for  its simple aluminium bolt together construction. The actual frame weighed sod all, the glass and concrete base were pretty hefty. 
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My work van Peugeot Expert LWB packed in this morning, cranked and tried to fire but wouldn’t run. I diagnosed a broken fuel line (air bubbles in the sighting pipe, no resistance in the priming bulb). Unfortunately the garage couldn’t come and look at it so I had to deliver it. The work car was dragged out to tow it but we couldn’t find the screw in towing eye. I ended up breaking out my Qashqai which was a bit hair raising, the van weighes about 2 tons and my clutch is 170k old but it pulled it ok. Incidentally I’d never used a towing bar before but it was much nicer (and legaler) than a rope especially with an inexperienced driver in the van.

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  • 4 weeks later...

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My white goods Nissan is temporarily* out of action with a broken wiper motor (it had actually flooded and was full of rusty water). So I broke out the old stager and set off into mid-Wales. It was one of those lovely journeys where I didn't need to rush, I could tootle along at my leisure and enjoy the scenery. 

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Today I also got the vital (unique to Ducati and Triumph) wheel valve stem, so I could reassemble the Triumph. I'm a bit torn on this bike, its nowhere near as nice to ride as my old bike and nowhere near as usable. But... it looks amazing (always had a penchant for big round headlamps) and sort of ticks a lot of boxes. In the right colour (black) you could definitely see it as a biker gang bike, it also has classic appeal, because Triumph, and is sporty in terms of performance and intent. It is a little bit Land Roverery to drive  ride as well, a bit ponderous, but surprisingly agile, and nice for low speed bimbling. 

Edit; It also has a hilarious* design flaw, whereby a flat rear tyre stands the bike up off the sidestand and tips it over to the right. Luckily I'd parked next to my shed when this happened so no damage occurred. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Vehicle update

Cashcow- needs new clutch slave cylinder I think. The clutch pedal is getting floppier and floppier and I can barely get it into gear. The slave cylinder is integral with the release bearing so I’ll have to remove the gearbox to change it. Weirdly the hydraulic fluid level hasn’t dropped, I’d assumed it would be leaking.

Speed Trip- back tyre staying up. Starts ok(ish) and no battery drain. Seemed to be running a bit rough though which might be the endless damp weather. 

Land Rover- Going mowing, back on the gang mowers for the cricket club when it isn’t pissing down and carrying my little mower for the pitch. Also inadvertently went off roading today up the woods. We took some family friends up to see the bluebells, eight up plus my dog and I decided to take the byway up the hill to come back down. I’d forgotten that they’d had a big forestry tractor in there which had created big ruts and made the soil a sticky morass. I had to keep going (nowhere to turn around), so I used proper old school knowledge (highest gear/lowest revs) and went up in low third. Absolutely no problem didn’t even break traction, plus my friends 3 year should be a Landrover fan for life. You do forget how utterly capable these sorts of vehicles are, especially suitably equipped with narrow grippy tyres. 

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  • 6 months later...

Vehicle update

Cashcow- I fitted a new clutch in the summer, having buggered the (admittedly rather elderly) previous clutch using it for gang mowing and towing the work van. I did it 'old school' on the floor, complicated by snapping a large bolt for the rear engine stabilizer/mount in the subframe. Miraculously shit loads of heat allowed me to tap the remnant out whereupon I found a generic bolt to replace it with. Despite this added complication it only cost about £130, the low cost being partially down to this model still having the good old fashioned solid flywheel design despite being a mid-late noughties vehicle. I decided that having fitted a new clutch I would like to get a few more years out of the old warhorse, so next thing was to prepare it for MoT. New anti roll bar drop links, a bottom arm and an inner and outer track rod were fitted (never fitted an inner before so I needed a special tool to remove it) plus a new handbrake cable for one side (it had seized where it entered the backplate). Happily it got a new ticket this morning, I was very lucky with the weather, having left it to the day before the test expired to fit all the required parts (bloody winter MoTs).

Speed Triple- Got SORNed in August. I was off to Australia and couldn't be arsed to fix it. Might defer retesting til the spring. Does need a bit of work, the aforementioned starting issue, which may be the (new) battery or the reg/rec. The chain could do with replacing and a pair of new tyres would be nice. The main MoT issue is the fork seals, which I've bought replacements for but which can wait until warmer or dryer weather. 

Land Rover- I was considering replacing the above daily with a newer Landrover 90/110 or early Defender. I don't do a lot of mileage these days or long distance journeys but I do often need a 4x4. Contrary to popular belief Landrovers are by no means the only liability on the 4x4 market. Apparently Ford Rangers are notoriously troublesome, so people I know in the plant industry have all gone back to the green oval (usually Discovery 5s) especially for towing. I'm currently working for a Welsh Trust who use 5 year old Navaras, one had the engine light on the other was stuck in 4wd. One good thing about early 90/110 models up until the 300Tdi is that they are very simple and very easy to fix if they go wrong. Having considered the matter at length I would like to properly do mine up before I consider buying another one. 

Mine really needs- doors/door tops (both are shabby, especially the latter) at about 160 quid a side plus the glazing kits for the windows. Probably needs new locks too. 

                                        -tyres, mine are ancient Goodyear G90s which actually look alright, not cracked or worn out but hardened (took me ages to remove one to fit a new inner tube).

Additionally I'd like new rear suspension springs, probably stick with standard rather than parabolic springs, in order to reduce the crashiness of the ride. 

The only thing I've done to mine apart from add petrol is to knock the ignition timing back a touch as it seemed a bit advanced/clattery especially at higher revs when the advance mechanism was open. 

Having got my old Rover how I'd like it I could then consider a new one, preferably a project, maybe even a chassis/bulkhead swap. 

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  • 6 months later...

Vehickle update;

Done sod all to the Astra, want to do a small amount of welding before I fit some new tyres and send it off for its last ever MoT.

Decided to treat the Qashqai to some new oil and filters seeing as it’s doing so much work/miles. Should really service the Landrover as well, as it’s probably overdue.

Finally cracked on with my Triumph. Decided to do the front fork seals, fit a new front tyre and new headstock bearings. Done the headstock, bit of a sod as the bottom bearing fell apart so I had to remove the inner separately, all back together, will do the fork seals and tyre at my leisure. Will fit a rear tyre, probably a new chain and do the plugs and air filter before it goes back into service. 
 

Here it is looking a bit sad…

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IMG_2977.jpeg.84a3fdf9ca60459ff7a80a4885e30940.jpeg
 

Thats one done. Not my favourite job, especially the trying to get the exact amount of oil in the tube, but at least they’re usually exactly the same design. 

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On 17/11/2023 at 10:32, warch said:

Vehicle update

Land Rover- I was considering replacing the above daily with a newer Landrover 90/110 or early Defender. I don't do a lot of mileage these days or long distance journeys but I do often need a 4x4. Contrary to popular belief Landrovers are by no means the only liability on the 4x4 market. Apparently Ford Rangers are notoriously troublesome, so people I know in the plant industry have all gone back to the green oval (usually Discovery 5s) especially for towing. I'm currently working for a Welsh Trust who use 5 year old Navaras, one had the engine light on the other was stuck in 4wd. One good thing about early 90/110 models up until the 300Tdi is that they are very simple and very easy to fix if they go wrong. Having considered the matter at length I would like to properly do mine up before I consider buying another one. 

I've had loads of early 110s and Defenders and I've never had issues with any of them, and I always buy the cheap, shabby ones too. They're very basic cars with very little to go wrong compared with something like a Ranger or Navara, I wonder if issues with the newer Range Rovers and Discoveries give the old Defenders an undeserved bad reputation.

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Fitted front end back together and fitted new front tyre. Unfortunately the front wheel seems to be slightly out of true at the rim. A bit of searching found a suitable replacement for not much dosh to be fitted if deemed necessary. 
 

Undeterred I turned my attention to the main issue with the bike, very poor starting. I decided that I’d give it new plugs, air and fuel filter which involved removing the tank and air box.

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The air filter was absolutely filthy so it was worth doing just to replace that. Removal of the air box allowed access to the plugs so I decided to renew them too (something often neglected on old bikes). 
 

The fuel filter was located in the tank and accessed via a massive access plate on the side. I decided (having obtained a new one for a good price) to replace the pump and screen filter as well whilst I was in there. 
 

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Once the new in-line filter arrives it can all go back together. The plastic tank really needs rubbing down and re spraying but I’ll leave that for another day. Hopefully all this will improve the starting and performance.

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