Both the front and rear propshafts have been on the “hit list” for a while due to the amount of play in the splines. On my competition motor I fitted a Bailey Morris heavy duty prop shaft after snapping a rear one and decided it was worth the extra money for the quality of the splines and the larger UJs so decided to go the same way with the 90. 2 propshafts along with 2 spare UJs for the spares kit arrived last week.
So, I ticked off a few jobs in the end this weekend – I added a foam rubber strip between the tyre rack and the roll cage at the front as it was whistling quite loudly above 40mph, all quiet now. I also fitted both new propshafts, fitted a new steering damper with relocation bracket to the steering drag link – removing the one from the track rod. In an effort to fix the annoying slight oil leak from somewhere around the transfer box I took the bottom plate off it and resealed it while changing the oil. I had a play with a number of ideas to try and mount the ground anchor somewhere and decided in the end it really is too cumbersome to fit in a 90 !
Sunday was spent doing a final fit and gauge calibration for the infamous battery and fuel monitor, in the afternoon we took it for a long run out to make sure the props and steering felt good and that the fuel gauge and fuel consumption was something like. All seemed good, the new propshafts have fixed the vibration we were getting on overrun, the steering wobble is completely gone and the spare tyre rack was quiet at all speeds 🙂
Just to prove that the battery/fuel gauge thing is actually fitted and working at last I even took a picture of it ! It sits quite neatly above the normal centre dash switches…
Well, our plans to go on a trip around Scotland for our wedding anniversary went out of the window. Still no sign of the roof tent and very little indication of when it might actually arrive. Very frustrating but we took the tin tent up to Helmsley for a few days instead and put a lot of miles on the 90 travelling around the area. On the plus side the weather is great, too hot really but hopefully good practice !
We did a bit of gentle green laning along the way and found out that the transfer box doesn’t like staying in low box, probably just an adjustment problem on the level as we’ve not tried it since the engine transplant.
25 years, doesn’t time fly !
Patrick sorted the problem with the gearbox pipe, it turns out that the push on connector wasn’t quite locating. Some of the steel pipe section needed bending slightly to give the flexible pipe a bit more slack so it would push on properly.
So it’s all up and running now and just needs a bit of bedding in and tweaking. The engine seems a bit low on power at the moment so I’ll need to figure out what’s going on there. It’s fine at low revs but seems to hit a brick wall at higher revs.
Finally got the 90 back on the road after it’s engine and gearbox transplant. We took it for a trip over to see Patrick at Maddison 4×4 so he could help me set up the Compushift to improve the shifting pattern for the electronic auto gearbox.
As it turned out this particular “shakedown” revealed a problem with the gearbox oil cooler pipe on the driver’s side. When we pulled into the petrol station for our first diesel fill up, a passer by pointed out an oil leak at the front. As it turned out the gearbox oil cooler pipe had popped off, probably as we pulled onto the forecourt. Didn’t lose too much oil and managed to get the pipe pushed back on again and continued our journey.
Unfortunately that wasn’t the end of that particular problem and while Patrick was doing his stuff and showing me how to set up the shift points we lost all drive. The pipe had come off again and, this time, deposited the contents of the gearbox all over the road. We weren’t far from Maddison 4×4 so a quick phone call brought copious amounts of “cat litter” to mop up the spill and we towed it back.
By this time it was dark and getting late so we borrowed a courtesy car for the night and left the 90 with Patrick to see if he could get to the bottom of the problem with the push on connector.
This really starts the ball rolling as far as preparing for the trip is concerned. Our chosen vehicle has a 3.9 litre V8 petrol engine that also runs on LPG. The downside of this for a trip like we have planned is that it’s too thirsty to give us the range we need/want without using all the limited interior space for fuel.
Converting the vehicle to diesel makes the fuel situation and range problem a lot simpler so, with some trepidation our beloved V8 90 is going to have an engine and gearbox transplant. A couple of years ago I rebuilt the vehicle and in the process used the main wiring looms from a TD5 Defender. At the time it meant a lot of work integrating the V8 electrics with the TD5 loom but fortunately I did it in such a way that the main harness was untouched. I also changed the fuel tank to a rear mounted TD5 style so there is room for the ECU box under the driver’s seat !
So, we bid farewell to the glorious burble of the V8 and replace it with a tractor engine.. albeit quite an advanced one by Land Rover standards !
We’ve stuck with the auto, a reconditioned/upgraded unit from Ashcrofts, and tracked down a low mileage “15P” prefix engine back in October. I’ve simplified the fuel system, in comparison to the normal TD5 setup, with an external pump and some bits from a 300TDi.
Mike is going to give me a hand when I’m lifting the engines in/out and Patrick will come over with his box of tricks and set up the ECU once the TD5 is in and ready to fire up. I’ve already taken the rocker cover off and got the injector codes off it. The ECUs (I got a spare one) are both configured for a Discovery at the moment so he’ll also reconfigure them for the Defender. Just in case the weather turns nasty I’ve put my plastic “garage” up on the drive to keep the worst of it off.