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Rogered Rover - Part 11 - July 2006

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Stripping the front wings back to bare metal was a marathon.

It seems that the military had put some sort of rubbery/plastic coating on the body, & paint stripper barely touched it. The total thickness of paint & other substances was about 1mm, & it took 3 days with a rotary wire brush on the angle grinder & a final clean up with paint stripper to do the job.

The wings were then painted with aluminium primer & the inner wing section & headlamp recesses were then given 2 coats of black paint.

While this was drying I stripped the rear lights, cappings etc. from the series tub & started to dismember it.

The wing brackets had also been painted, & these were now fitted to the previously installed clinch nuts in the bulkhead.

I tapped the holes in the windscreen mounting brackets, & then top coated these at the same time as the front panel & the area inside the wings in front of the rad panel – the remainder of the wings will be top coated in situ when I have finished messing about under the bonnet.

Tried fitted the bonnet, but found the hinge holes didn’t quite line up as the hinge lugs on the 90 bulkhead are slightly different to the series, so out with the file to slot the holes in the bonnet. Also, as the series bonnet is narrower, it fouls the rain gutter on the bulkhead, but flattening the last inch of flange on the bonnet got round that problem.

The next area to tackle was where the return lip on the bonnet fouled the servo, and a quick flourish of the tin snips soon remedied that.

I then turned my attention to the power steering.

I drilled holes in the (new) front panel support for the hose clips.

The pressure pipe fitted O.K., but I found that I had to route the return pipe around the back of the box because of the closeness of the inner wing.

At the other end, I found that the original reservoir to be too big & the outlets in the wrong position.

Looking under the bonnet of my Rangie, the later reservoirs are smaller & the pipes point downwards rather than sideways, so I will fit one of these.

The next area I looked at was radiator hoses.

I found the old rad hoses & found that the original Rangie bottom hose was perfect for the top, & a shortened bottom hose would fit the bottom.

I don’t know why, probably because they were lying on the bench taking up space, but next I fitted the new plastic headlamp bowls & head lamps.

I had to use the series light harnesses as the connectors on the end of the 90 harness won’t go thro’ the holes in the inner wings.

I then went to the back & fitted some ty-rap bases, & then ty-rapped the cable harness to the rear cross member & the rear tub support rail.

I needed to tidy up the wiring, so I made up a panel to take three 2” diameter gauges; from some textured plastic sheet I had lying around, to go in the dash recess, which had originally housed the cigarette lighter & rear wiper switch.

This enabled me to mount the oil pressure & voltmeter Gauges from the Rangie in position.

I then ordered some connectors, along with some cable & pipe (fuel) clips & some fuse holders from “Vehicle Wiring Products” to enable me to finalise the wiring.

I decided to fit the petrol pump to the outside of the rear bulkhead, two mini type cotton reel exhaust mounts proved adequate.

The original pipe to the tank (plastic) proved to be the correct length, but I bought some 8mm copper pipe to use from the pump to the engine as this will retain it’s shape & be better where the petrol pipe might be close to the exhaust.

The outer wings were removed at this point to improve access.

I went to “Tinley Tech” to find out if the gas vapouriser from the series would be suitable for a V8 (it is) & was also told it was a good quality one.

Adaptors for the Stromberg carbs are about £40 a pair & a stock item.

I bought a petrol cut off valve, as the series one is too small, & some ‘T’ pieces for the heater/vapouriser pipe work.

I bought a new power steering reservoir & fitted it & connected the pipes &filled with fluid.

The petrol pipe was the next job, including fitting the original RR filter & the recently acquired cut off valve.

A box was made up of scrap bits to fill the hole in the N/S inner wing around the suspension turret.

A 100mm guttering down pipe outlet was cut to shape to form the heater duct – what I shall do in the top of the inner wing remains to be seen.

Brackets were fashioned from scrap for the mud shield supports & these were riveted to the underside of the wings.

The wiring (spaghetti) in the engine bay was tidied up by removing most of the excess wire, probably about 10 metres.

The servo hose was connected next.

The rear panels were then removed from the old series tub for future use on the 110 tub.

The dash was the next thing to concentrate on.

Defender screen vents are much larger than series, & consequently foul wiper boxes fitted in the series position. Application of heat via a hot air gun & pressure from a screwdriver handle formed a suitable indentation to get around this problem.

The rest of the dash & instruments were fitted without major problems.

Then back under the bonnet to finalise the wiring by replacing the terminal blocks with connectors.

Defender heater pipes & hoses were connected using ‘T’ pieces to the engine & the gas outlets joined together to close the system.

The cooling system was then filled.

Off to Billing, bought door hinges, wheel arches, set of side/indicator/stop & taillights, missing ‘A’ post cover & a rear capping.

Found a place in Littleport breaking a few Landies & bought a seat box, floor & transmission tunnel.

Tried the seat box, it fits well, although the hilo lever will have to be modified & the handbrake poses a problem – the RR pushes the brake on using rods & the defender pulls with a cable.

The series seat box was then bolted in position & a temporary seat installed. I removed the battery from my Rangie & connected up to the Hybrid.

The plugs were removed & then the engine was spun over until the oil light went out.

A gallon of petrol was then put in the tank, the plugs replaced & the engine started!!

I couldn’t run it for long as it is not fitted with fan blades, but as the front wheels are off I had time to put it in gear & the front prop shaft turned, so this indicates that the clutch works & we have drive.

This was a relief, as we are probably moving in the next few weeks, & being able to drive it on to a trailer will make life a lot easier.

The next task is to shorten & fit the rear tub, & if I can achieve that before we move that will be a big bonus.


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