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Gearbox swap, advice please.

Paul Woodward

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Hi everyone! I've browsed through this forum and there seem to be some technical experts here!!

I'm running a 3.5 V8 through a Series III gearbox and I'd like to fit a later gearbox from a Defender or Disco, preferably a auto. I've read all the other threads on this subject so know roughly whats involved.

I can get hold of a auto box from a V8 Disco, has anyone fitted one of these to a Series? Mine is a 88" and my main concern is will the rear prop bind up with the suspension on full droop? and will the front prop clear the bellhousing cross member?

I measured the length of the manual box in my mates 200 tdi Disco, it seems around 10" longer than the Series box. Will a auto be the same length?

Is there a more suitable box (shorter!) available, manual or auto?

I really don't want to move the engine forward as I want to keep the Series front.

Thanks in advance!!

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LandRover Autos are usually very close in length to the manual option and they in turn are a bit long . The short shaft lt77 saves about 4'', so you would still have a very short propshaft and unless you mount the transmission low in the chassis, knuckling or binding of the UJ's will be the result. You could tilt the rear diff up and mount the engine/transmission assembly on a rear sloping angle to alleviate this condition, but your front propshaft would be all wrong unless you fit a stage 1 v8 front axle assembly that also tilts the front diff pinion upwards. Either way I think the arched crossmember under the bell housing would need reshaping to clear the propshaft.


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It has been a while since I have seen one, but from memory you will be looking for a 2.5 NA or 200tdi Defender box and bell housing which is about 4'' shorter than the 300tdi and will obviously bolt up to your V8 adaptor ring. Can't remember if the bell housing centres itself on the flywheel housing with a large spigot like the Series or uses dowels, so you may have to clock it up to your adaptor with a dial indicator, or the box may keep climbing out of top gear.


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