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1966 88 IIA coil over conversion


wolfieroc
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I am looking to convert my stock 1966 88 IIA to a coil over 5 speed. I have seen this done ie http://www.eastcoastrover.com/coilsprung.html

and would like to do similar. Problem is although the site says they can do it etc they have no frames they used to source from http://www.designa-chassis.co.uk/company.asp will not ship one to the states AND if that wasn't bad enough Ashcroft Transmissions does not have any more R380 shorty gear boxes. Soooo that gets me to the question, has anyone done this and if so where did you source the parts for such a project. I have read the articles about go with parabolics etc but the gear box is in need of rebuilding as well. Ideas?????

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Why bother? Why not sell the series and buy a 90 if you really want coil springs???

Stick with a set of parabolics and shove an LT77 in and save yourself a load of time, money and hassle.

I dont see the point in spending a load of time and money chopping about a series these days when 90's have got so cheap.

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maybe Bill Davies at Great Basin Rovers in SLC UT could be worth a call if you're having probs getting a chassis shipped over?

do you want to run coilovers (Kings, Fox etc) or coil sprung in the same vein as a D90?

how about drop in an SBC and a TH400 onto an NP205 and its gonna be way more fun with cheaper spares for you? :)

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Why bother? Why not sell the series and buy a 90 if you really want coil springs???

cos he's in the states and you cant import a 90/110 over there AFAIK.

You could import an old 2 door rangie to the US i think, then build a coil sprung hybrid based on that. But getting one with a decent chassis is the problem, probably needs loads of chassis repairs - in which case you might as well just weld all the coil sprung jiggery pokery onto your series chassis if its sound.

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A bit more info would be good, also exactly what you mean by "convert to coil over 5 speed" would be good - do you mean fit coil springs and a 5-speed gearbox?

First off, in the UK it's not worth converting to coils these days - for you it may be different with poor availability of old 90/110's. If you're just after a bit more comfort, fit parabolic springs. If you absolutely must have coils, then modifying an old Range Rover chassis (and using engine & geabox) to put your Series body onto is probably the easiest. Shipping a chassis over shouldn't be impossible.

As Jez says, in the US there will be far better "native" engine & trans options open to you, and for a lot less cost. What engine are you running / planning to run?

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Hi,

welcome to the forum.

you dont state which engine you want to run with, a lt77 is 5 speed and will handle a fair bit of abuse.

or rebuild your own gearbox, R380's and lt77's are pretty easy to rebuild.

Well I plan on keeping the petrol as you say engine(2.25) and was looking for more drivability via the cils and 4 wheel disc brakes. I have heard of the LT77 as well anyone know a source? Is there any bell housing adapters needed? Also I may very well end up with parabolics and a 5 speed since the engine runs very strong. The current gear box is a pain getting from 1st to 2nd gear.

Thank you for the welcome, I can see there is a wealth of knowledge here.

A bit more info would be good, also exactly what you mean by "convert to coil over 5 speed" would be good - do you mean fit coil springs and a 5-speed gearbox?

First off, in the UK it's not worth converting to coils these days - for you it may be different with poor availability of old 90/110's. If you're just after a bit more comfort, fit parabolic springs. If you absolutely must have coils, then modifying an old Range Rover chassis (and using engine & geabox) to put your Series body onto is probably the easiest. Shipping a chassis over shouldn't be impossible.

As Jez says, in the US there will be far better "native" engine & trans options open to you, and for a lot less cost. What engine are you running / planning to run?

What I was thinking of doing is taking the body off the current frame and putting it on a new galvanized coil over frame with RR axles and a 5 speed mated up to the existing and strong running 2.25 gas engine that is in the vehicle now. Just looking to add some better drivability ie 4 wheel discs, short highway trips to a mountain area cabin we have etc.

Why bother? Why not sell the series and buy a 90 if you really want coil springs???

Stick with a set of parabolics and shove an LT77 in and save yourself a load of time, money and hassle.

I dont see the point in spending a load of time and money chopping about a series these days when 90's have got so cheap.

I may very well end up with the LT77 and a set of parabolics. One thing I would not get is the 4 wheel discs. As for 90's getting cheap I guess that would

depend upon your definition. In the US for a 10 year old Defender 90 with 75K miles on it you can expect to pay 26K+ US. And my rover would never be nor

would it be intended to be a daily driver just a nice hobby/novelty.

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OK, got a better understanding of what you're doing now :)

If you just want higher gearing, a Fairey Overdrive would do it although if your gearbox is having problems that obviously won't fix it. It also won't make things any quieter in the cab.

LT77 is the predecessor to the R380, they're very similar (R380 is 1" longer but otherwise identical) and they're often interchangable (but not always), confusingly between different vehicles you cannot interchange the same gearbox - a Defender LT77 has the wrong back end for a Range Rover, for example, due to the gearshift mounting.

Keeping the 4-pot lump you can use a stock LT77 or R380 from a 4-pot Defender, ashcrofts should be able to sell you the right thing with a bellhousing.

You can either use the LR77 kit to mate it to your existing transfer box, or if you can find an LT230 transfer box you can use that, although you may need/want to convert it to 2WD on the road like the Series setup. In an 88" it could be a tight squeeze.

LT230's are strong and you can get different gear ratios. With Series diffs you will be geared low, with coiler axles the gearing will be as it would in a coiler. Be aware that your engine may struggle to pull larger tyres and high gearing, I'd guess the majority of LT230's in existence in the US will be Range Rover ones and hence higher geared than Defender. There's only so strong a stock 2.25 engine can be. Ashcrofts could probably sell you the right thing off the shelf but I wouldn't fancy the shipping costs! :ph34r:

As for coils / axles, it's a tricky one - fitting coiler axles onto a leafer setup is not straightforward, fitting coils onto a leafer chassis or doing a re-chassis is also not exactly a weekend job... you could split the difference and fit axles from something stronger and more reliable :P

Either way round you'll need a bigger brake master cylinder & servo to cope with disc brakes, early RR bits can be made to fit or early Defender ones also work and IIRC some of them even bolt in.

Each of the things you want to do, and all the various ways of doing it, have been discussed here many times, an afternoon with the "search" button could yield lots of info.

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OK, got a better understanding of what you're doing now :)

If you just want higher gearing, a Fairey Overdrive would do it although if your gearbox is having problems that obviously won't fix it. It also won't make things any quieter in the cab.

LT77 is the predecessor to the R380, they're very similar (R380 is 1" longer but otherwise identical) and they're often interchangable (but not always), confusingly between different vehicles you cannot interchange the same gearbox - a Defender LT77 has the wrong back end for a Range Rover, for example, due to the gearshift mounting.

Keeping the 4-pot lump you can use a stock LT77 or R380 from a 4-pot Defender, ashcrofts should be able to sell you the right thing with a bellhousing.

You can either use the LR77 kit to mate it to your existing transfer box, or if you can find an LT230 transfer box you can use that, although you may need/want to convert it to 2WD on the road like the Series setup. In an 88" it could be a tight squeeze.

LT230's are strong and you can get different gear ratios. With Series diffs you will be geared low, with coiler axles the gearing will be as it would in a coiler. Be aware that your engine may struggle to pull larger tyres and high gearing, I'd guess the majority of LT230's in existence in the US will be Range Rover ones and hence higher geared than Defender. There's only so strong a stock 2.25 engine can be. Ashcrofts could probably sell you the right thing off the shelf but I wouldn't fancy the shipping costs! :ph34r:

As for coils / axles, it's a tricky one - fitting coiler axles onto a leafer setup is not straightforward, fitting coils onto a leafer chassis or doing a re-chassis is also not exactly a weekend job... you could split the difference and fit axles from something stronger and more reliable :P

Either way round you'll need a bigger brake master cylinder & servo to cope with disc brakes, early RR bits can be made to fit or early Defender ones also work and IIRC some of them even bolt in.

Each of the things you want to do, and all the various ways of doing it, have been discussed here many times, an afternoon with the "search" button could yield lots of info.

Thanks for the info, as for the engine what is your/others opinions of the Turner HO 2.25 engine? Seems to me to be just a higher compression head(shaved?) to get a little more HP. I would look to use a 1995 RR as a donor(axles etc) as in my part of the country (New Hampshire) they are readily available and have a 24pt spline that should he stronger.

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The path you are wondering down looks mighty familiar.

My 1967 IIa is now 5 speed defender lt77,with lt230 transfer box (permanent 4wd),and discovery 24 spline axles i.e. discs all round.

Still on leaf springs,and staying that way.

If you like the 2.25 petrol then stay with it - I put a 300 tdi in mine and am very pleased with it.

My tdi IIa

All of what you are considering is possible,and has been done before - This forum has proved an amazing help to me in all the jobs I've done - So keep asking the questions.

Parabolic springs are an improvement over standard landrover leafs,but there is still quite a difference between them and coil springs.If you want a coil sprung IIa then you do it.

Cut down a Range Rover chassis if you can get them over there,or get Designa Chassis to send one over to you if you can afford it (use an independent shipping agent if necessary).

Enjoy the process.Best of luck, Jerry.

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http://overlandengineering.com/

Matt Browne in Eliot ME, just the other side of Portsmouth. Depending on what you want to do, he may be the chap you want to speak with.

ECR do very good work and I don't know anyone who has been displeased with the results of what they have done. However, if your budget is less than stratospheric and you want to enjoy your rig while you're still young enough to drive it, they might not be your first choice.

Matt put a 3.5 V8 in my SIII in front of my SIII gearbox and, with the overdrive, it is all I could ever want. I'm quite pleased with my parabolics on and offroad.

As per the discussion above, it looks like you're trying to decide what you want out of your truck. If it's power, ease, and comfort, then putting your truck's body on a cut-down RRC may be just the ticket. On the other hand, consider some options. If you are going to have someone else/a shop do this for you, you need to think in the $12,000 range for a proper job. :o

On the other hand @ $5,000 will likely get you all the ACR PowerPlus kit and give you a @ 110 bhp 2.25, a rebuilt gearbox, Roverdrive, and a set of parabolics and new shocks, plus some nice refurb.

Maybe you should give Matt a call and have a chat about what he can do for you?

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http://overlandengineering.com/

Matt Browne in Eliot ME, just the other side of Portsmouth. Depending on what you want to do, he may be the chap you want to speak with.

ECR do very good work and I don't know anyone who has been displeased with the results of what they have done. However, if your budget is less than stratospheric and you want to enjoy your rig while you're still young enough to drive it, they might not be your first choice.

Matt put a 3.5 V8 in my SIII in front of my SIII gearbox and, with the overdrive, it is all I could ever want. I'm quite pleased with my parabolics on and offroad.

As per the discussion above, it looks like you're trying to decide what you want out of your truck. If it's power, ease, and comfort, then putting your truck's body on a cut-down RRC may be just the ticket. On the other hand, consider some options. If you are going to have someone else/a shop do this for you, you need to think in the $12,000 range for a proper job. :o

On the other hand @ $5,000 will likely get you all the ACR PowerPlus kit and give you a @ 110 bhp 2.25, a rebuilt gearbox, Roverdrive, and a set of parabolics and new shocks, plus some nice refurb.

Maybe you should give Matt a call and have a chat about what he can do for you?

Thank you for the contact info, I went to the ECR location while on leave and it is a shoebox. Projects underway looked very good and they are moving to a much bigger facility now and the backlog should drop. They do some good work but yes the prices and lead times are something to consider. I will contact Matt to see what he can offer-it never hurts to ask.

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The path you are wondering down looks mighty familiar.

My 1967 IIa is now 5 speed defender lt77,with lt230 transfer box (permanent 4wd),and discovery 24 spline axles i.e. discs all round.

Still on leaf springs,and staying that way.

If you like the 2.25 petrol then stay with it - I put a 300 tdi in mine and am very pleased with it.

My tdi IIa

All of what you are considering is possible,and has been done before - This forum has proved an amazing help to me in all the jobs I've done - So keep asking the questions.

Parabolic springs are an improvement over standard landrover leafs,but there is still quite a difference between them and coil springs.If you want a coil sprung IIa then you do it.

Cut down a Range Rover chassis if you can get them over there,or get Designa Chassis to send one over to you if you can afford it (use an independent shipping agent if necessary).

Enjoy the process.Best of luck, Jerry.

Thanks Jerry, with a LT77 and LT230 I would not be able to have part time 4 wheel drive? I plan on using a 1995 RR for all suspension, axles etc and if I get a standard donor vehicle it is my understanding it would most likely have a LT230. I plan to build my garage I have always wanted with a full lift to make this as painless as possible. No more rolling on the ground for this soon to be considered "old guy".

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