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Im planning a long trip around Africa in a couple of years time in a land rover. I need to learn abit about mechanics (i currently know nothing) incase I break down in a remote area.

Im having trouble finding a suitable course. Ive searched the internet and phoned up a few colleges. The courses ive found are for people who want to do it as a career and concentrate on health and safety, workshop practices and removal and refitting of vehicle components. The only bits I want to know is the practical bits, like changing oil filters, shocks, bearings etc.

I live in Wolverhampton and would really appreciate any information regarding finding a suitable course or somewhere I can look.


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I'd suggest that what you need is Evening Classes, rather than a 'Course'.

In politically incorrect days you would be looking for titles such as 'Car Maintenance for Women', or similar.

Actually, you probably still are, but the title is something different. However, try asking your colleges for a list of upcoming evening classes, look for any involving car maintenance, and ask more closely about those.

I'll have to qualify this by saying it's a long time since I did evening classes (Welding and Diesel engines, as two separate courses), so my knowledge of what is currently available is weak.

There are alternative approaches, such as getting taken on as a 'Girl Friday' at an Independent LR garage, where you repay your training by doing some useful work, maybe not in week one, but by the end of 3 months, say. There are pitfalls with this approach as well, as a lot depends on your interaction (in the nicest possible way) with the Garage Owner. You don't want to fall into the trap of being the Tea Boy, or the person constantly sent out to get a part, deliver a car, anything that takes you away from getting your hands dirty.

Good Luck.

PS, A good idea is to update your profile with your location, just in case someone here has local knowledge that may help you.

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Perhaps people living nearby would appreciate help when they are doing the sort of jobs you mention? I know I would, although quite how you could organise it I am not sure. Maybe people could PM you with their planned work?

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put a notice up in your local postoffice /supermarket saying pretty much what you have up there ^

im sure loads of people will show you how to do things if you keen to get a little bit dirty :ph34r:

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If you've got a couple of years prep, I'd say get out and drive the thing off-road as much as possible - and then fix it as it breaks. Not only will you gain the fixing skills, but you'll know what goes wrong and what doesn't on your vehicle and end up knowing much more about it's character.

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Again, I don't know where you are, but is there anything like this near to you?

Rural skills centre

which is attached to the Royal agricultural college. I did the welding course there, and was very impressed. They do a vehicle maintenance course which might be a good starting point. I would agree that the best way is to go and play with the Landy for a bit as well. That way you will find out where the weak points are before your trip, and either fix them, or learn how to repair them when they go wrong in the bush.

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let us know where you are, someone might be able to suggest a local landrover club you could join... you'd then be around like-minded people who i'm sure would be able to help you...

I agree with the others though... start with the easy stuff and get your hands dirty..

The Haynes manual is notr as bad as most people on here reckon it is :rolleyes:

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  • 2 months later...

Hi All,

Sorry for the late reply but ive had troble posting.

Thanks for all the info and help. My dad is a land rover finatic so he is now teaching me bits and pieces on how to repair them. I go round once a week to help him repair his land rovers.

Its actually not as difficult as i thought :) but im sure it wont seem this easy when i broke down miles from now-where in the Africa wilderness lol.

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