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So here I find myself some 6 years down the road in the rebuild of my Land Rover 90.

The Little Landy has been nick named by my misses as Billy.

I'm putting the details of the rebuild on here as this forum has helped me considerably during the build especially on the megasquirt side of things but that comes later, much much later.

 

Firstly Let me introduce you to a fantastic friend and mate Rob. We bought Billy together somewhere in 2007.. We both had nice Land Rovers and wanted something to thrash around.

 

Ebay produced a 1985 2.5L N/A Diesel with monumental mileage and not a straight panel. We paid somewhere in the region of £800 It had no tax or Mot and was a shed. We off-roaded it on play days and I even got it though an MOT occasionally.

Rob sadly passed away in 2009 with cancer and was only 31 years old.

I kept the Landy going and was asked to look after it.... After a couple more years enough was enough and it was just too dangerous to keep on the road.

Rob always wanted a Defender Soft top with a V8. So in 2012 I grabbed my spanners and decided to start a no rush rebuild.

In my opinion the best of the bunch is the NAS 90 V8. So here follows my rebuild including problems, parts and issues when building your own V8 90 Auto. Just like Land Rover did but better............

 

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Prior to me taking Billy off the road. Boris the Mayor decided smelly diesels were not allowed near London. Billy got a 2.5 petrol engine off eBay for £200 and I stopped getting letters from the Mayors office threatening me with fines.

The Diesel engine was sold on eBay and ended up going abroad.

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A good friend of mine and Robs passed his driving test and Billy was loaned to him as his first car.

 

Thats how it ended up in a ditch and when patched up crabbed down the road

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Robs Last outing in Billy. Eastnor Castle. The centre diff was knackered and wouldn't lock.

 

However a heavy right foot and a lack of mechanical sympathy ensured the Extreme route was conquered.

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So with any rebuild a new chassis is the best place to start.

 

Richards received an order for a V8 90 HD chassis with Td5 rear end.

 

The beauty with Richards is they will make you anything . The TD5 rear end means that I can put the tank in the rear and not have to sit on it.

Plus the TD5 plastic rear tank is a lot more readily available than the defender NAS tank.

In the second picture you can just see the back of a Swiss Army 100" Series.. This was in for a rebuild at Richards and the owner I end up meeting some 3 years later when I sell him the remnants of a Donor car for this project. Small World.....

 

The Black Disco K188 JWW I bought and sold 3 times as it was so good. It now resides in Ireland and I regret selling it 

 

 

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Just found this piccy.

Thankfully for my neighbours My house no longer looks like this.

 

My Stage 1 V8 sold with only 40k on it from new. Again idiot selling it.

Defender G4 Event Vehicle, Yep really stupid letting that go,

Disco, Don't remind me about that

And Billy 

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Oh yes - please keep it coming !!

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So as you prob guess the chassis was junk and the mechanicals at best needed some work.

 

I had decided that it would be a 3.9/4.0 V8 and automatic. so what I really needed was a donor.

 

T KUT as it shall be know was won on auction from ebay I paid £600 for it and had to nurse it back from Somewhere near Liverpool .. It had 60k and had serious overheating problems. If I got caught in traffic it over heated. If I drove slower than 53mph it overheated. If I drove faster than 53mph it over heated. It was the longest journey ever. However the car was clean and everything else except the engine was excellent.

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I stripped all the mechanicals and then sold everything else on the car on ebay. The car ended up costing me about £200. 

 

I now had the same mechanicals as used on the 50th Anniversary Defender

 

The rest went for scrap. In hindsight and if this wasn't a donor car. TKUT would of made a great daily driver with a new engine.

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In the Bills for TKUT the owners had spent thousands on trying to rectify the overheating. The garages had ended up putting replacement heads on the engine and doing the usual lack of nothing for astronomical costs.

 

I discovered that the liner had slipped... Surprise surprise... Plus the recon heads were not correct for the Serpentine front. The garage had bodged the brackets back on with meccano and luck 

So the block is scrap and the heads need replacing.

 

You can clearly see the dropped liner. This will need some head scratching and leaving in the basement for the wife to trip over for 3 years..........

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I had read extensively about something called Megasquirt. I've been on Nigel's website and found out this is what I wanted. YouTube had videos of Forum members with their trucks running underwater using this magic system.

I've had a few V8's before all of them running carbs and a Dizzy.They were great vehicles and in my opinion still better to drive off road than my TD5 defender with Traction control and turbo's and things. However non of them liked a good dunking.. I've a vid somewhere of my Stage 1 going a bit deep in Wales and my 4.6L 90 suffering misfires when drowning it.

Plus I stripped and  studied the Lucas System and decided that it was too complicated

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So Megasquirt it is,  as it stood I didn't know that much and if I'm honest a bit nervous taking the plunge. I needed a block or engine and the megasquirt bits and pieces.

 

I priced up the ECU and bits and a chance find was this, the second donor for Billy.

It had a Hydraulic Milemarker type R on the front and a Superwinch H14 series on the rear. It even had an Mot.

It also came with a laptop loaded with Tunerstudio and a ECU from Extra EFI.......

So I had a truck with a sweet V8 running Megasquirt and something I could fiddle with and tinker.

The truck (sorry if someone on here did the work) wasn't that solid and had been thrown together. The sum of its parts and effort made getting the hydraulics fitted and working in my mind was effort that should have been spent getting the brakes and suspension sorted first.

 

So after a few months of tinkering and driving and playing with the megasquirt I took the very good 3.9V8 out. Along with the megasquirt.  The Landy minus its engine and Gbox went on eBay. This project was snapped up by a chap who runs a ski company in France. Coincidently he was the owner of the now rebuilt  Swiss army 100" Series spotted in Richards chassis all that time ago. As I said small world........ 

 

 

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I also had a decent 3.5V8 that I donated to the car for the owner to rebuild. This I had removed from my V8 90 when it was upgraded to a 4.6 

Here's a pic of my old 4.6V8 90 with the engine I built and fitted

 

I promise to get to the build of my NAS/Anniversary soon but I'm trying to get the history out of the way.........

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Right so I've got a chassis, Engine, Gearbox, Axles and some rather reshaped/knackered bodywork.

 

Let's go find someone breaking Defender Td5's. I love the later style dash and electric windows and a dash you can see at night would be good.

At the time of purchasing these bits the cost of Defender bits was reasonable. If you look at what a Bulkhead and dash will set you back today is somewhere in the region of £2000 if its rot free. This dash is XS spec so has heated seats, heated front screen, electric windows and central locking etc.

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So we are prob about 3 years in by now. As I said, it would be a 'no rush job'. I've done a few of these now and always hated that I had to have it done by a certain time or I had to revise or change what i'd done before.

So somewhere around 2015 I got the chassis out and first thing was to T wash/Mordant wash it.

 

 

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Next Job Paint it.

 

I used Frosts chassis black and so far it seems okay. I elected to paint rather than 'eau natural' as I did a Series 3 many years ago and left it unpainted and it just didn't look right and the galv was going 'Brown'

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Edited by keeley75
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Whoops I can't upload anymore pics. as Ive reached my limit.

Anyone help. do I link to my pics or do I have to wait until I can be trusted to load more

 

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Prior to painting I did trial fit the engine and gearbox.

As most will know the HP22 and transfer box is a direct swap into the defender V8 chassis. Engine mounts and gearbox mountings are all in the correct place and allow the use of standard propshaft lengths

 

I found this handy diagram that helps ensure the torque converter is correctly engaged

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Axles next.

The donor axles from the Disco were in very good condition.

Previously I have fitted bolt on diff protectors but I decided to fit the Gwyn Lewis 4x4 HD weld on Pans..

1mm cutting discs worked perfectly and i managed to accurately cut the original pans.

A bit of grinding and some welding had the pans back together and the strength is impressive.

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Next job get everything blasted and coated. I work near a company called NSP Coatings. They blasted and then coated the axles, radius arms, trailing arms, A Frame, brackets and tank guard plus a few more bits and bobs. They sprayed it in Zinc. This gives the same protection as Galv without the heating and dipping issues that can affect parts.

Beer tokens turned a rusty bunch of bits into this.

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It looks a top end project.  Nice collection you had.  The story is a sad one, but you're doing a great job in memory of your friend.

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Posted (edited)

I did test the axles for leaks before this and was happy that the pans were water/oil tight.

Painted the axles with Frost Chassis paint

Cleared the threaded holes with a tap and at last I can start bolting clean stuff back together.

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Everything was T washed prior to paint and then etch primed. 

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Edited by keeley75

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Suspension time, for me there was only 1 route, Old Man Emu, Expensive but I had it on my Green V8 and it was excellent.

I went for Medium front and Rear which gives a small lift and paired it with standard shocks.

Even today I'm not sure how heavy this thing will end up and where the ride height will end up, so this will do to begin with. 

The rear springs at this stage push the shocks to full extension. However as the build has progressed its starting to settle down 

 

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Differentials.

I wanted Lockers, However would I really end up putting this car through extreme off roading enough to justify the expense and fitment.

There was another issue. If I had a button on the dash that said Diff Lock. My better half would at some time end up pressing it and then trying to drive it down the motorway.

So I settled after some discussions and email ping pong with Nigel for Ashcroft ATB's. Front and Rear.

Whilst at it I needed to look at gearing. The 50th is really high geared. There is a video from Nigel explaining this and how it can be combatted.

 

As the vehicle would at Min be on 235 85r16's and was using the Disco 1 running gear now seemed the appropriate time to sort it out.

 

So Ashcroft's got my first big order, 

2 x ATB's

Front and Rear Heavy duty Crown and Pinions 4.12

Nigel got a delivery from Molly.

 

I used Nigel's prog and his gut feeling to work out the ratios I should use.

 

 

 

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