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Tanuki last won the day on June 2 2019

Tanuki had the most liked content!


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    Wolves, Land-Rovers, Military radio, home-made wine, forestry, amateur radio.

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  1. I had a similar quandary back around 2007 when my prime client [where I was working 2 days a week] moved their head-office from Swindon to Leamington Spa - adding at least 280 miles a week to my drive. I looked at leasing a cheap-to-run hack Diesel [back then the Merc A-class had good offers] because it would at least have been reliable and partly tax-deductible - but then I remembered the tendency of the Fosse Way to grind to a total halt at the first sign of a bit-of-snow and didn't want to take the risk of contract-breach penalties if I didn't show-up in Leamington on a day I was contracted to [missing a contract-day would have paid for a month and a half's lease on the Merc]. So I stuck with my 90TD5 - and though it only averaged 24MPG it never failed to get through. Don't run a TD5 on crappy veg-oil - the cost of a new set of injectors and/or a fuel-pump when it all clags-up will totally wipe-out any fuel-cost-savings you may have achieved. Weight-shedding is always good: I used to carry a load of tools, a high-lift jack and a jerrican of fuel around with me [probably 50Kg of weight] - a RAC/AA card and a phone are _much_ lighter. Equally, get rid of roofracks, winches, bull-bars, light-bars and other such tat that adds weight _and_ wind-resistance. Driving-style is also relevant: *don't* stick it in a high gear and expect it to stagger along at off-boost low-RPM: the efficiency of a turbodiesel depends on the turbo doing its thing to get maximum air-volume into the cylinders - Compression Pressure is the friend of Thermodynamic Efficiency! A TD5 is happier if you let it rev, even if you're only giving it a whiff of throttle.
  2. There are plenty of hydraulic-service companies that will come out to you and fix the problem, Pirtek being a good example, but given that this is harvest-season they're really busy doing work on tractors/combines/silagers so don't necessarily expect "ETA 1 hour" response. Driving with failed PAS - just don't get involved in an accident or your insurers will be likely to disown you.
  3. Worst I've done on a LR product is pour in 8 litres of new clean fully-synthetic engine-oil before noticing the growing puddle of new clean fully-synthetic engine-oil emerging from beneath the vehicle and spotting the sump-plug/copper-washer sitting smugly on the wing. £60 down the drain [or rather, all over the concrete]. I also once jacked-up a LR in a narrow-ish workshop to replace the front CVs, only to find - after I'd pulled the swivel-hub apart - that the workshop was about an inch too narrow to let me pull the thing out of the diff-casing :(
  4. The rear lights are less-than-ideal, but they are a sensible compromise. The big restriction on placement being the type-approval requirement that the opening of the rear door does not obstruct the parking-lights/indicators (which is why old Discos had the lights in the rear step which replicated the lights on the rear corners).
  5. My understanding is that the 'source' vehicle needs to be road-legal [meaning it is both taxed and MOTd - and maybe insured? - as appropriate at the time-of-transfer]. Tax/MoT-exemption - along with [to me far more important] emissions-certifications don't transfer with registration-numbers. This could pose issues if you drive into one of the low-emission-zones and their retarded CCTV sees you're driving a vehicle with an 'old' registration-number so they stick you for a fine without realising you're actually in a 2021 Euro6-compliant vehicle.
  6. If it hasn't already been done, deactivate the EGR. You can buy kits for this but get the same effect for free just by disconnecting the wiring-loom plugs from the two vacuum-solenoids. Change the brake- and clutch-fluid regularly - like every year. This will stop master-cylinder/slave-cylinder/caliper corrosion issues. Yes the calipers will eventually seize but they're cheap and you'll be taking them off every few years to replace the discs anyway. Use the right antifreeze at 50:50 dilution. Don't mix different colour antifreezes if topping-up the coolant. Change the gearbox-oil regularly. And use the right stuff [MTF94 isn't that easy to get these days alas]. Use decent quality filters [I did an autopsy on a "Blue Box" oil-filter here about 3 years ago, after I got worryingly-low oil pressure following an oil/filter change - the findings were disturbing] Consider the copper injector-seal washers a 50,000-mile service-item. Fit decent shock-absorbers - not the 'blingy' stuff sold to the off-road market. I put gas-pressure yellow Bilsteins on my 90TD5 over 100,000 miles ago and the transformation, particularly when towing, was impressive. A pair of these Bilsteins will cost you more than four blingy off-road-market dampers, which says something. Apart from that, my biggest advice is 'sort out the little niggles' - that odd rattle/squeak, the door that doesn't always close cleanly first time, the juddery screenwipers. They won't actually make your vehicle last longer but they'll mean you want to keep it and use it rather than dreading your next journey in it.
  7. Presumably, someone-somewhere is covering the cost of your hiring an equivalent vehicle while this insurance dispute is going on? If so, the costs of this must now be truly astronomical - far greater than the repair-costs! Your lawyer [you do have one I guess - probably through your insurer's 'legal cover' scheme] could point this out to the third-party's insurers and tell them to get their fingers out of their collective bums in order to save themselves from the ever-growing costs. [A couple of decades back, my daily-driver, a Scimitar, got rear-ended by a drunk woman in a FIAT. Initially her insurers tried to palm me off with a 'basic' courtesy-car but I really didn't think driving clients around in a Nissan Micra would be good for business. Eventually they caved-in and said I could rent something suitable - I got a Merc C280 Estate, this being the nearest equivalent vehicle they could arrange. After four months driving this - and my weekly faxes (this being before insurers understood email) reminding them of the spectacularly-growing rental tab they realised it would be cheaper to just pay for my Scimitar to be rebuilt at a GRP-specialist classic-car-garage of my choice - which duly happened. And they paid-up all the rental-costs for the Merc...] I like lawyers!
  8. I found that the BECM-equivalent [alarm/immobilizer] on my 90TD5 was being kept 'awake' by the thing-on-the-central-heating-oil-tank-that-reports-the-oil-level-to-the-display-in-the-house. This was sending a reading every 10 minutes or so - and with my Defender parked only a few feet away it couldn't help but hear it! The usual frequencies for the remotes are around 418, 433-434 or 868MHz. An old-style "Scanner" receiver (generally obsolete now the police/ambulance/fire-brigade have all gone digital) is a useful tool to investigate these kinds of problems. I got round the problem by not replacing the battery on the in-tank sender bit and now just use the tank's external sight-gauge.
  9. Folllowed a Black Defender 2.0 back from Devizes today, which gave me some time to study its rear-profile before he turned-off to Avebury. To me, it does look a bit of a "Fat-bottomed girl" as Queen would put it: the wheelarches seeming too wide for the upper superstructure (reminds me of the 'bubble' arches boy-racers fitted to Mk.1 Escorts back in the 70s). Keeping the same track but widening the body up-top and using smaller wheelarch-flares would have given a more-balanced profile [also being a quiet 'heritage' nod to the original flat-sided Series LRs!] - they could then have moved the rear lights further-out too and avoided the silly little extra ones.
  10. I could - perhaps - give houseroom to a New [old] Defender - but I'd want a van-bodied 90 and would insist on the silly attention-attracting 'adventure' accessories [roll-cage/roofrack/lights/A-bar/winch] being deleted, it being repainted in base white, and fitted with 117MPH road-rated tyres. I never want to attract attention. You can blat a clean-but-boring-looking Land-Rover down a motorway at 80MPH and the Volkspolizei don't turn a hair; do the same in something that looks like it's a low-rent refugee from Tomb Raider and you can guarantee to see blue-lights in your mirrors.
  11. I'd go for a 90; I don't need the space of a 110 - I'd want a 'commercial' version so no rear seats to waste space, and a 90 will be lighter [so better handling] and easier to park too. [I once made the mistake of taking a 130-inch HCPU into a multi-storey underground car-park... and got very good at making multi-point turns to get on/off the up-and-down ramps!]
  12. Rather than an inertia-switch [which can be set-off inadverently - the one on my 90TD5 tripped once during a 'clumsy' trailer-hookup] could you maybe use one of the 3-way oil-pressure-switches that kill power to the fuel-pump when there's no oil-pressure? Alternatively, 1970s/80s Fords used a relay that took pulses from the distributor and shut-down the fuel-pump when the engine wasn't turning.
  13. There are 2 aspects to battery-health; the ability to store charge and the ability to deliver that charge rapidly-enough to actually start a vehicle. Testing these - particularly with modern batteries - is rather more than just looking at the battery's terminal-voltage; I'm sure you're all familiar with the battery that's got enough voltage to bring the instrument-lights on at a seemingly-OK brightness but which gives the solenoid-death-rattle when you try and crank the engine. My "general purpose" battery-test is to turn the headlights on - and leave them on for an hour. Headlamps typically take 5 Amps each - so that's 10 amps, plus maybe another 5 Amps for sidelights/number-plate-lights/instrument-panel illumination. An hour of this is 15AH of load; a LR battery is typically rated for 85 or 110AH - so draining 15AH is less than 20% of the battery's rated capacity. If it can't start the engine after that, well, I'd be replacing it. The kind of "big resistor" load-testers the AA use are OK to indicate the battery's ability to supply lots of current for a short period, but not to show how the battery will cope with extended discharge. One thing to be careful of - decades back there were some such load-testers that had a central rectangular case containing the load-resistor and a good/bad-indicating meter, with a sort-of pair of tongs with probes you were meant to stab across the battery-terminals. Problem was, this invariably created a spark - not something you want close to a battery where there may be explosive Hydrogen gas around. A relative blew-up a tractor-battery using one such tester. Proper "load testers" these days have big alligator-clips and cables like jump-leads, the resistor/meter box with the test-switch can then be placed a few feet away from the Hydrogen-bomb before you start drawing big currents.
  14. Diffcult starting, lumpy running-after-start: Does it start easier if you do a few fuel-system purge-cycles [see manual] before trying to start it? If so, how old are the copper injector-seals? I consider these to be a 60,000-mile service-item. You may be able to run a TD5 longer, but the copper seals *will* be leaking after 60K miles, letting combustion-gases back into the fuel-galleries and feeding carbon-crud back to the fuel-tank, where bacteria grow and produce 'Diesel Fungus' that clogs the pick-up-pipe-filter and kills the fuel-pump.
  15. The thing is, a business can lease a £50K vehicle on, say, a 3-year-plan, it's both VAT-deductible and the lease-payments are entirely seen as legitimate business-costs, so they come off your balance-sheet before any considerations of 'profit' are made. Meaning you get to pay £500/month to drive a nice vehicle that impresses your customers/clients and that £500/month is not your _personal_ tax-liability.
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