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I might have just got the bargin of the year...


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Couple of weeks ago at SRC's scrapyard down at Fontwell near Chichester, West Sussex I saw a C reg 90, mostly complete but battered body and rusty chassis. Some of the floor was out and what took my eye was it had what I thought was a v short bell housing...

Now some of you on here have LT77 and R380's attached to the series transfer case, and i'm tempted to do the same (when I finally finish the chassis rebuild on my series 3), so I thought this scrap 90 will provide a LT77 and the bellhousing.

Fast forward a few weeks and after browsing LT77s on Eblag from 90 and 110s, their bellhousings all look longer. Scrappy wants £350 for main and transfer which is a bit steep considering the LT77 being C reg could be knackered. But I could always sell the transfer, I'll save the £200 surcharge on a recon LT77 from Ashcrofts if the gearbox is scrap and at least they will get the gearbox out of the vehicle...

So I think about it a bit more and after waiting a couple of wks for them to get it out, go up there to pick it up this afternoon. Decide to split the boxes for ease of handling. Tries to stand main on its end bellhousing down, but input shaft sticks out of end so have to support it on blocks. Bit odd that I think... :unsure: My mate Dan says "bellhousing has got a date stamp of 1997", I note gearbox 5th gear extension housing is date stamped 1998. Don't think any more of it. Goes to pay bloke in office.

Heave them into the back of 90, just about to shut the door when the (other) chap in the shed says"want anything else off the engine?"

"Not if I have to pay for it" is my reply.

"What I don't see I don't know" he replies walking off in to the yard.

Blinking flip, engine is only a 2.5NA but its got a brand new still shiney clutch on it and a new Bosch starter motor. They come off double quick time as well as the fuel filter assembly.

Off we depart, hardly believing our luck.

Drops gearbox off at my Dad's ( no garage and only on street parking at my gaff) for storage till the wknd, wipes crud of serial number.. 50AxxxxxxxK. Still don't twig.

Gets home, fires up PC, logs onto Ashcrofts, LT77s only went up to suffix H and of course they weren't made after 1994. Has another look on Eblag at LT77's and they all have longer bellhousings than mine.

Then the perverable light comes on, is it a R380? Ashcrofts mention suffix K, J and L. Look on here about R380's in a series and Mr gearbox Dave says you need a 50A spec one. My scrapyard find also has the reverse switch in the side where as a LT77 IIRC has it in the end, and i've got what looks like the stumpy bellhousing.

Not going to be able to look at it again till Saturday, but I then can confirm where reverse is (had no gear knob on it), but i'm 99% certain that I've got the dogs boll*cks short bellhousing R380. Plus being driven a by 2.5NA the R380 shouldn't be shagg£d.

So for £350 looks like i've got a R380, LT230, the rare as rocking horse poo short R380 bellhousing, a new clutch, a fairly new Bosch starter motor and a fuel filter assy. Not bad for an afternoons browsing a few weeks back. :D

Question is why didn't they just fit a recon LT77 when the original went rather than going to all the expense of the short bellhousing R380? Where they "ripped off/misled" and ended up paying what must have been at least £700-£1000 in parts alone if they were brand new from LR rather than £350 for a LT77 recon?

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Guest diesel_jim

/cupping my hand to my ear,listening in the general direction of Amesbury/

Is that Minivin i can hear cursing loudly? :D:D

bloody good find though! top marks!

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