Got my Land Rover Defender :)

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kard133

Full Member
Mar 20, 2010
613
24
Bristol
Hi, I am looking for some advice and opinions from members with experience with Land Rovers.


Here is my Defender.


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MOT's until Feb 2014, taxed until August 2013. 160,364 miles on the clock. Paint and body need some work, looking at repainting it in the future.


I have found one spot on the chassis, on the passenger side outrider which will need welding (no problems there, a few years ago I cut my teeth arc welding up the chassis and floor panels on a Triumph Acclaim), other than that the screwdriver and hammer test found no other problems. will clean, red oxide, stone chip, chassis paint/waxoyl as I go.


The doors however were bodged by one of the previous owner, body filler and rivets used to hold it together.


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I will be effecting temporary repairs to strengthen the frame tomorrow, some welds and plate, eventually I will get the proper repair sections and rebuild them, or if absolutely necessary replace them. All the locks will be changed as one door is missing the key mechanism and I have a different key for every remaining lock, parts already obtained. Drivers side inner lock release is broken, looks like a bar is missing, I will compare it with the other door when I remove that card, the passenger door has the same failure pattern as the drivers door.


The bulkhead has the usual rust in the upper corners, drivers side not to bad, passenger side a bit more involved but ultimately savable I believe. Are the YRM panels any good?


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Windscreen seal has perished, door seals are falling apart at the bottom. I will replace the windscreen seal when I do the bulkhead, the door seal I will patch with gutter sealant for now, with plans to replace as funds allow.


Temperature control lever is stuck on hot, dash is coming apart to inspect bulkhead so will deal with that later.


Roof lights are not wired in, these are not a priority so they can wait.


The things that have me worried are the rear nearside suspension strut (?)
the gaiter has failed, not sure if this means I have to replace the strut or if it is salvageable?


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The Transfer box is leaking, there is a small puddle on my drive at the moment, after fifteen minutes of sitting still it seems to have stopped, so maybe this is a gasket issue. There is a clunk when changing gear or taking my foot off then on the accelerator, is this backlash? My reading on this forum and others leads me to believe that maybe the splines are worn, or worst case scenario given the leak that the mainshaft need replacing, any tips on diagnosing this or other possible causes.
Gear changes, once I got used to the box and clutch, were quite smooth without grinding, so I think the box and clutch are OK for now, will probably replace the clutch within a year or so if there are no problems.


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Rear diff leak, another gasket failure?


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Heard a squeal at full steering lock when reversing, could this be related to the clunk mentioned above or is there something else I should check?


Another thing is that the viscous fan has a maybe a cm of play on every axis when tugging on it with the engine off, however there is resistance when spinning it. Should this be taken as a sign of failure and should I remove it now? I think I will end up going the electric fan route as one of the previous owners removed the cowling and never replaced it. There are two unmarked toggle switches, one on the dash and one in the ashtray (?) which don't appear to do anything which may mean that this was done before and then removed, I wont know until I get the multimeter out and trace the wires. What would be a good fan to source for this that also covers the intercooler?


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Oil on the engine below the rocker cover, didn't seem to be any fresh oil there when I got home, might just be the gasket or mess left over that was never cleaned off, won't know until I degrease and run the engine, plenty of oil in the engine, but it is as bit black, no sign of water mixed in and no evidence when that last service was carried out, however there is a garage receipt for the fitting of a replacement timing belt 20,000 miles ago. So Bearmach filters ordered and 8l of 10w40 Semi Synthetic sitting in the shed.


Break squeal so they will be done next before I drive it again.


Most of the rear interior panelling is missing, but I am very handy with a glue gun and hardboard ( re-panelled a rover 214 with a faux suede fabric many years ago)


Engine starts first time every time, no knocking, smooth idle, revs up and down smoothly and was quite happy pulling along at fifty on the way back to my place, of course I may find something wrong as I go along.


Boy, was it fun to drive, noisy, a little slow to accelerate compared to my usual drive, and the seat need raisers (1" bar stock?) for comfort.


I have loved the design and utility of this Vehicle since I was a boy, and circumstance recently made me decide to live what dreams I could so I brought this after viewing another in Thornbury. That one the owner couldn't start, the chassis seemed to be in reasonable condition, but there was even more oil over that engine bay than this one, all four tyres were different his overall manner was off, shall I say (and in his advert he stated driven daily, when trying to start it the said it had been standing there a month!) made me walk away. This one was one of the few in reasonable distance from me that I could view it, there was another one in Chippingham that the owner seemed to have taken care of but it was hardtop conversion and I wanted (Maybe wrongly) as close to factory station wagon spec as possible.


As a bonus I found inside a Clutch Claw with keys and a farm jack which I believe is a T-Max, as well as a CB which my brother is having (HGV Driver)


On a side note, are there any instructions on fitting an additional in-line fuel filter as I am interested in running this on SVO and Biodiesel at some point inn the future.


Looking forward to your feedback.
 

Ogri the trog

Mod
Mod
Apr 29, 2005
7,177
65
57
Mid Wales UK
Hi Kard133,
That looks like a good base project there.
The clunk on changing gear could be a prop shaft U/J giving up the ghost - easy enough to check, just crawl under and try to move the prop shaft ends on the U/J's.
Brake squeal could also be a seized or corroded piston.
Both the above jobs I have recently done on a Mk1 Disco, spares are pretty cheap and easy to get and can be done at home with a few basic tools.

I am also led to believe that standard shock absorbers are easy enough to do and reasonably priced.

ATB

Ogri the trog
 

Ronnie

New Member
Oct 7, 2010
588
0
Highland
I'm not an expert, but yes - that's backlash and your rear diff it's almost certainly rogered. Replacement is usually easier than rebuild, the tolerances on these things is extremely tight.

Get yourself over to http://www.landyzone.co.uk, an interesting bunch of people with an extraordinary depth of knowledge of all things Landie. Requires a certain degree of attitude adjustment to get the best out of the place, but they will be able to give you lots of very specific answers to all your questions.
 

pastymuncher

Nomad
Apr 21, 2010
331
0
The U.K Desert
Not bad at all.
The leaks you have shown are perfectly normal for a landie, don't worry, get used to having an oil slick on the drive way.
The shock looks like its blown so replacement is required. Don't worry about the clutch its probably been changed already as they last around 120k miles, save it for the gearbox change you will need to do.
Wave goodbye to your social life.....
 

Jackdaw

Full Member
Great looking 90. The leaks look pretty standard but go ahead and play getting them fixed. It's how most of us learnt our way round them. I wouldn't bother messing around with the doors but rather just replace them. It will save you so much time in the long run.

Get yourself a security post or it'll go walk about in no time!:(
 

wingstoo

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
May 12, 2005
2,271
38
South Marches
My advise is get an understanding bank manager or take out a second mortgage...

They are known as "Off roaders" for a reason...They spend most of their time in the garage.

I have had two LWB land rovers, a 109 safari and a 110 CSW both cost more than enough to get on the road and keep on the road, the best thing I found was the bonnet is removable for easy access, doors are a pain and cost a lot to replace, so if you find a good one get it.

Good luck with your land rover and remember the important saying that goes with them...

ONE LIFE, LIVE IT but try not to live it underneath trying to fix it. :lmao:
 

TurboGirl

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Sep 8, 2011
2,326
1
Leicestershire
www.king4wd.co.uk
Thats a great base TDi County, well chosen! I'll ask Hubby to look through your questions tommorrow (we're 4x4 traders, he's the spanner monkey ;)).... one thing about seeing oil over a diff, at least its been filled regularly ;)

Another vote here for Landyzone, we've had some exceptionally kind and indepth replies when things have proved awkward to diagnose. Congratulations on getting her... tis nearly as expensive as finding a trophy wife but a damned sight more rewarding in the long run ;)
 

British Red

M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)
Dec 30, 2005
25,643
563
Mercia
Always remember 78% of all Landrovers made are still on the road. Which of course means that 22% made it home!

Have fun with it, buy a proper car for driving on any journey where arrival is a factor and keep convincing yourself that reliability and build quality are not important factors in a car

I lasted over a decade like that :)
 

kard133

Full Member
Mar 20, 2010
613
24
Bristol
Thanks for the replies, I have joined and posted this on Landyzone (same Username). After reading through several articles the rear diff might just need a new seal (I live in hope). As soon as I can I will check the halfshafts and UJ's for play as a lot of the reports on clunking like mine have had these as the cause.
Jackdaw, across the front of my drive are two seven foot sections of steel joists buried three feet deep in concrete with a scaffold pole on rollers between them, locked with awkward to access padlocks, noisy as hell to move and I sleep on a hair trigger, would this count? :)
Ogri, I have been looking at various parts and very rarely do any of them come in at more than £60 (avoiding Britpart, no love for them whenever I see the name mentioned) This is one of the things that attracted me to the Defender, cost and availability of parts and relative ease of fitment (once drove a Ford Focus for work, to change the headlight bulb you had to practically take the engine bay and wing apart, according to a mechanic) I like the K.I.S.S principle ( and those Crazy, Crazy Crazy Nights) Don't get me started on the electronics and Cambus systems, and the dealer only resettable warnings (another point in the Defenders favour, at least when it goes wrong it doesn't whine about about)
Bowlander, I assume you mean Triggers Brush from only Fools and Horses? Another point in the Defenders favour then, eventually I will have assembled a new one without silly new car prices and built in England :)
TurboGirl, thanks for the offer, if I do require replacing or rebuilding the Diff/Transfer boxes is there anybody you could recommend? For parts a lot of people recommend Paddocks, YMR metal solutions and MM 4X4, do you or anybody else have experience with these dealers?
British Red, luckily I have access to another car for day to day running around, and this is to keep me occupied on the weekends since they took away my Meccano set.

Now I am going to rip the doors of and patch them to keep the secure.

Peace out.
 
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TurboGirl

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Sep 8, 2011
2,326
1
Leicestershire
www.king4wd.co.uk
Databurst from Hubs ;)

Firstly YRM are good products- Paddocks, although useful and down to a price, are Britpart stockists.

If the shocks ok, you can clean the gaiter with solvent and use CV boot glue to repair it. If you need to replace the shocks, use standard if you can as the pattern parts tend to ride much harder.

If theres an A frame on top of the diff, it might be the balljoint in that creating your problems. It looks like the pinion seal on the diff that needs replacement, do that first :) We don't know anyone local to you we'd recommend to rebuild it unfortunately, shame we're miles away... £1 a mille there and back would be prohibitive from sunny leicestershire ;)

The full lock could be a wheel bearing complaining... I mentioned inner wing rubbing but apparently thats not likely as you'd feel it through the steering

Kenlowe fans are grand for good airflow over the intercooler too, sounds like your original viscous fan is very worn

Trev suggests you check the engine breather and replace the rocker cover when you clean her up to remove that from the leak potential areas, tis easy and cheap

He also says there's not much point in inline fuel filters- better to replace the standard one regularly (every 6 months ideally) if you're using biodiesel.

Thats the databurst over ;) Sounds like you're a lover of the tinkering, anyhow, enjoy getting her into fine fettle and using her again! There's some good online 4x4 clubs and you might find local clubs with use of areas to really put her through her paces/ hook up for green laning trips etc :)
 

kard133

Full Member
Mar 20, 2010
613
24
Bristol
TurboGirl, thanks to you and your husband for the advice, does he go by the moniker TurboMan on Landyzone? This weekend I have degreased the engine and transmission system and taken it for a short drive. There is a very slight leak from the rocker cover gasket, so that is one thing to change. No drips visible from the transmission system, unfortunately that means it may be dry, so going to get some fluid to top it up with, although I may change the gaskets and seals first chance I get anyway. The suspension seems to be Ok, pushing the vehicle down hard it bounces back up and returns to its starting position on all four corners without bouncing, driving it seems level without dipping when braking, but I will probably replace all four shock absorbers within the next year. The clunk when changing gears and releasing or applying the accelerator seems to be coming from the front of the vehicle, unfortunately my drive is on a slope so I will have to wait until I can park it somewhere flat to jack it up and check the UJ's. Things I managed to do this weekend were replace the bonnet release cable, the mechanism appeared to have been bent, and whoever replaced it before put the bolt in upside down, I will need to remove the lock mechanism and clean it though as it is sticking.
The stuck heater control (temperature adjustment lever) was stuck solid on hot (apparently I have one of the very rare defenders where the heater works :) ) was a very easy fix, some penetrating oil with graphite has it moving freely now to provide slightly cooler air from outside.
I also removed the drivers door and welded some patches into the side struts, as the outer skin was the only thing holding the top of the door on, and the skin was cracking. A few welds and some 2 mm steel liberated from a skip, and a little red oxide paint and I can hang off this thing now, pics to follow, only problem is the door bottom is so rotten that the door is hanging down, and the hinges are really worn, I either have to replace them or get creative with some stainless washers and bolts.
I just wish I had a garage to work in, the sun this weekend has been merciless, and the body work got to hot to touch. Other than it it was very satisfying to do even this little amount of work, and learn something new as I got on with it.

Peace Out
 

RRIris

Member
Jul 12, 2013
21
0
East Midlands
I've a disco with one of the TDI engines, bombproof little things and I consider them no challenge to work on. I don't loose any sleep over possible engine troubles on my disco. Great little engines, I've given mine a right kicking and it still comes back for more.

I've always wanted a 90, or an 88" series IIa. Maybe one day, when I have a larger budget to play with and a bigger driveway.
 

kard133

Full Member
Mar 20, 2010
613
24
Bristol
I've a disco with one of the TDI engines, bombproof little things and I consider them no challenge to work on. I don't loose any sleep over possible engine troubles on my disco. Great little engines, I've given mine a right kicking and it still comes back for more.

I've always wanted a 90, or an 88" series IIa. Maybe one day, when I have a larger budget to play with and a bigger driveway.

Provided you like mechanical work, it's great fun. You're right though the engine is like a vampire, it just keeps going and coming back. This weekend I have had the bumper off to repaint it, ended up welding some patches onto the mounts and shearing one of the bolts, ordered some stainless replacements for that, finished painting the replacement td5 door hinges from rj Land Rovers, ordered a mondeo radiator fan and X-fan thermostat switch to replace the viscous fan, and refurbished the drivers side floor and underseat panels in zinc paint prior to covering the underside with stick on flashing, and stripped the bumper back to bare metal and coated in a rust converter, with aims to prime it tommorow evening and paint in black hammered paint. Lots to follow.
 

rik_uk3

Banned
Jun 10, 2006
13,320
20
66
south wales
Provided you like mechanical work, it's great fun. You're right though the engine is like a vampire, it just keeps going and coming back. This weekend I have had the bumper off to repaint it, ended up welding some patches onto the mounts and shearing one of the bolts, ordered some stainless replacements for that, finished painting the replacement td5 door hinges from rj Land Rovers, ordered a mondeo radiator fan and X-fan thermostat switch to replace the viscous fan, and refurbished the drivers side floor and underseat panels in zinc paint prior to covering the underside with stick on flashing, and stripped the bumper back to bare metal and coated in a rust converter, with aims to prime it tommorow evening and paint in black hammered paint. Lots to follow.

I now fully understand why a friend of mine who works for Land Rover said he'd buy a Toyota if he won the lottery;)
 
Feb 7, 2013
7
0
Maidenhead
Been around Land Rovers for twenty odd years, though preferring leaf sprung versions. Looking at some of the problems there are some solutions.

As said the clunk may be diff wear, but check prop UJs first. Unbolt the prop from one end and give it a good wiggle. The oil leak is not unusual it will be the pinion oil seal. Not difficult to replace. Read the manual for step by step process. Rear diffs themselves aren't difficult to replace. Remove the drive flanges and pull the half shafts out a bit before removing the diff bolts. Take care the diff is pigging heavy. It will surprise you when it's lying on your chest. Ask me how I know.... :eek:

Doors are a notorious rot spot. Probably easier to buy secondhand replacements but they're all crispy and expensive. So you'll need to check carefully. Alternatively it is possible to replace them with earlier split doors with sliding windows but you'll need to replace the locking mechanisms.

I'm not a fan of electric fans but others swear by them. It may be the the viscous fan itself has had it. Try getting one from a scrapper.

Good luck with it.
 

Imagedude

Full Member
Feb 24, 2011
1,983
20
Gwynedd
I now fully understand why a friend of mine who works for Land Rover said he'd buy a Toyota if he won the lottery;)

The problem is that you'd need to win the lottery to buy a Toyota. The equivalent Toyota 70 series is at least £10000 more expensive than the equivalent LR.
 

BillyBlade

Settler
Jul 27, 2011
748
2
Lanarkshire
You're not wrong Imagedude, they are.

However, the upkeep on a land rover can cripple you. When I served my time many years ago we'd see them come in for the first MOT needing welding etc. Ok, I lived in the country and this was a country garage that saw landies that worked from the living, but even so. Poor form.

Contrast that with the Toyota kit that just used to get normal servicing and wouldn't blummin die.

Towards the end of my time the local opencast mining company (we had the servicing contract for them) switched from Landies to Toyota's. Twenty odd years later, they still run Toyota's. I think that says something.
 

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