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Way Past 40.

This really is just a load of old rambling about me and the different things I end up doing as I potter through life or even worse, things that cross my mind.

IĀ  published a couple of books called "The Project Has Landed..." about the Land Rover Series 3 rebuild I did a while back, along with "My CV" which regales you with some of my working career from a kid onwards and these can be bought from any amazon website so please feel free to go and get yourself a copy!Ā  You would have to have far too much time on your hands along with cash in the bank to bother but hey, it's worth a punt.

If you feel the need or just want to talk feel free to contact me via and I will get back to you as and when I actually look at my emails...

Thanks for reading.

Mator Is In The Landy this month

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Wed, December 09, 2015 20:43:17

Did any of you make it to Donnington last week? The Landy free newspaper put on a great show again but the best bit of all was the fact that Mator the Series 3 I rebuilt made a show again in the newspaper!
The Landy are running a series of extracts from my book “The Project Has Landed” by Nicky Smith (that’s me you know and the book is available at any amazon website worldwide!) and this month was no exception with yet another two page spread dedicated to my drivel based ramblings along with how I managed to bugger up things along the way.

Feel free to pop over to or the facebook group “Just turned 40” to see the other projects that have kept me on my toes since Mators completion and thanks again to the folk at The Landy newspaper for putting my stuff out there šŸ™‚

A nice review!

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Thu, October 08, 2015 20:06:43

Well I just popped onto Amazon to check to see if I had missed anything lately there and a nice review had been left about the book “The project has landed”

Now should you not have yet ordered your own copy of the book feel free to pop to

and buy a copy!

Thanks for reading folks!

Something in the pipeline.

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Mon, July 06, 2015 19:11:00

Even though Mator has now moved on to a new owner his presence here is still felt and there is indeed something in the pipeline about the old boy so keep an eye out…

The Final Chapter

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, June 20, 2015 09:10:46

Over the last year or so I have got great enjoyment from rebuilding Mator my Series 3 FFR Land Rover. There have been tears there has been frustration he has taken his fair share of skin and demanded a regular blood sacrifice. I have fought with the DVLA to get him registered and the regular tinkering to keep him running were all part of the fun.
But I had to have a bit of a rethink when the road tax bill arrived a week or so ago telling me it was time to tax him yet again because as I glanced down to the odometer and realised I had only covered 205 miles in the six months since the rebuild.
All of my hard work was just sitting on the driveway slowly coming undone as I didn’t use him in fact I regularly use Brian my Discovery instead because he’s a nicer drive and far cheaper to run. It seemed crazy to go on like this.
I have had a yo yo relationship with Mator concerning driving him in fact it has been a love hate one. At times I love driving him and then I hated the way he drove. I thought do I need this many cars in my life? and the answer after a few sleepless nights was no, no I didn’t.
I wanted someone else to use him and take advantage of the hard work I had put in I mean why restore him just to let him slip slowly backwards again?
I placed a few adverts out there and had the usual tools asking me questions that showed they had never driven a Series 3 Land Rover and they had unrealistic expectations of what it would be like but then one chap called who seemed to know his stuff. He knew it would be an ongoing process to maintain an old Landy that it could break down at any time even on his way home from buying it and he was keen to come and see Mator in the flesh.
A time was arranged and he was over the moon at the condition of Mator as he would become his daily drive for both his large family and to work and back.
The deal was struck after much discussion on what had been done on the rebuild the paperwork was signed and it was with a tear in my eye along with a heavy heart as I watched Mator drive away with someone else behind the steering wheel.

I did think as I watched him drive into the horizon “Have I made the right decision here?” but I have had a couple of days to digest it and yes I have. My enjoyment was in the actual rebuilding of him and I have brought an old Military Land Rover back to life when most people who would have looked at him at the start would not have thought possible. He has made me friends and turned me into and published author which I would not have ever thought possible! Lets not forget why I started on him in the first place it was to stop smoking and show what I could do with the money. He kept my hands busy when I needed to and was the physical embodiment of what I would have smoked into thin air.
He has been an experience indeed and I do not doubt that there will soon be another project on the drive because that is what I love doing!

Let’s hope Mator and his new owner will have half as much fun as we did…

The Project Has Landed…Book

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, June 06, 2015 19:22:43

The book “The Project Has Landed…” written by yours truly is doing well so far sales wise I must have sold at least two to people that are outside of the family that have to buy it!

Should you want to buy one for yourself you have two formats to choose from. The first is the paperback edition and the second is the e-book edition, both are available form Amazon everywhere in the world!

Copy and paste the link below or just type in “The project has landed” into Amazon’s search bar and thanks for reading folks šŸ™‚

200 plus

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Thu, June 04, 2015 19:54:28

I finished work at a reasonable hour this afternoon and seeing as Wifey and the kids were off out this evening to her sisters I decided to load up Mator with my mountain bike then head out to Gunthorpe where the river Trent runs through for a ride out in the sunshine that had been looking at me through the office window all day.

Ready for the off much to my surprise Mator started right up and off we trotted heading towards the open fields of Nottinghamshire. The last time I tried to do this run the clutch stared to gave out so it wasn’t until after I had passed that point on the drive I started to settle down and enjoy the run. He still brings a big grin to my face and all six of the other Land Rovers I passed were happily waving away…must have been a drive out afternoon all round.

Soon I arrived at my destination and I promise I did not look for a nice parking spot to take a couple of photo’s…

I then set to going for a nice ride along the riverside. With my change in roles at work I am not getting the exercise I did before and I do miss it in fact the lack of it can make me feel quite rough so I put in six miles of off road biking trying not to get mugged by the many many cows I passed with their calves in tow, the views were outstanding…

But time flies when you are having fun and I was soon back to the old Landy and I enjoyed the view of my two toys…
As I was heading home I happened to glance down just as the trip clicked over two hundred miles since the rebuild, that was back in January, when I paid my insurance with estimated yearly mileage of four thousand….
I think I may have over estimated my usage a touch!
Still not to worry I will know better next year. The mileage should increase steadily now though as I seem to be using the old boy a bit more often but hell he drinks some petrol when I do!

Autokana & The Force

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, May 31, 2015 18:12:59

Well Mator got a good run put today to display at the Autokana show in Wollaton Hall Nottingham with the NLRC.

Typically when ever you have to spend the whole day standing around outside it was raining heavily. Still this was not going to stop me and I packed up the stove kettle and some food to cook jumped in the old boy and set off for the six mile drive to Wollaton hall with the fast steamed up windows that you traditionally find in your Series motor. I have learnt quickly that you have to have a rag on the dash on standby at all times for an old Land Rover so I found myself quickly wiping the inside of my windows as often as the wipers were doing the outside but I didn’t care as I was soon at the show and found another member already there standing in the rain with a cup of coffee at the ready!…

The other folk soon arrived in dribs and drabs and we were soon sniggering at the great old cars that were arriving and skidding/slipping around on the hill side along with the look of sheer horror on their owners faces as the went in any direction but the right one in their pride and joy! Sounds like I am being mean but that is not my intention it was just comical to see all you needed to do was add the music from Benny Hill.

It was cold and wet most of the time but good company and a wander around helps out no end and the stand looked pretty good…

but my photo’s don’t do it justice. All seemed well but then the Empire turned up in force hankering on about something we had done but none of us were going to argue with them…

It was indeed a good day, bloody cold but a good day! If you live in or near Nottingham you should look up the Nottingham Land Rover Club because they are a great bunch of folk and there is always laughter going on somewhere with them! We are off again in a few weeks for our first caravan trip with them so that should be some fun šŸ™‚

Plastic bags & Pipework

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, May 24, 2015 08:24:40

Mator has been true to Land Rover form he has run faultlessly for two drives out and now is demanding more of my attention for repairs but we will come to that shortly.
My young nephew arrived around lunchtime and his first stop after getting out of the car was my Series 3. He was straight in it looking around saying how much it had changed since his last visit with a massive grin on his face that some how got even wider, which seemed an impossibility seeing as his face had by now run out of room, when I told him we would go for a run out in him later in the day.

Lunch eaten we decided now was the time for a drive to the woods for a walk so my brother nephew and I jumped into Mator and had a blast of a drive for the eight mile trip and all jumped out of him happy as kids in a sweet shop. It was at this point my sister in law who had been following us in her modern day reliable boring car asked “Is that water supposed to be coming out from under the engine?”
Now as much as my pride wanted to say “Yes yes it is woman it’s a Land Rover they all leak a bit” due to the amount of coolant pouring forth I didn’t think I would get away with it without cooking and destroying the engine on the way home so I pooped the bonnet and assumed the standard landy position of standing on the bumper bent at the waist with my head in the engine bay.
It was only a top hose that lead to the useless standard landy heater that had a hole in so I closed the bonnet and carried on with our woodland stroll while contemplating what I actually had in the back of Mator to fix him because I had typically removed the tool kit earlier in the day while pottering on the Disco and forgot to put it back in.

Upon my return I hunted around and found a plastic back and a single cable tie….challenge accepted!
I shut down the heater valve by turning the temperature lever to cold restricting the flow and then tore the plastic bag into wide strips wrapping it around the hole in the pipework and tying it off on itself. I didn’t even use the cable tie at this point I saved that in reserve in case my initial bodge didn’t hold…

We then set off for the drive home and I now had my niece and nephew riding along with me with the plastic bag bodge holding the cooling system together and much to my surprise it did hold all the way back into the city. We had only one more set of lights to go and a three hundred yard run home when I noticed the main ring road had been closed off due to an accident!! Talk about pushing my luck!
I looked down at teh temp gauge without trying to look concerned for my young passengers it was still running just fine but there was now a bit of a queue and a back road maze we had to travel to get back without killing the old boy…I didn’t think my luck would hold that long but with no other choice onward we travelled!
We sat waiting a while then squeezed between parked cars getting back to the ring road just behind the road block much to the surprise of the police officer who was there. I explained what we were up to just trying to get home before killing my motor and he grinned saying “The accident is past your house you will make it” and with a wink he moved the secondary cones that he had in place and we we away!

So we got home and Mator was still running at a normal temperature and much to my surprise he had most of his coolant still in place my plastic bag bodge had held for over 40 minutes! SO it goes to show that these landies do always want you to be tinkering with them but by god they are easy to fix and keep going no wonder our forces love the bloody things!

Tyres & Rims

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Fri, May 22, 2015 21:11:09

After getting the old wheels off of Mator during his rebuild I was happy to fit the big chunky mud wheels to him but I have had a change of heart of late because now I am keeping the old boy I quite fancy putting him back towards his military roots because I like the look!
There was and is no rush for this bit of a backward transformation so I have been just keeping an eye out for the right tyres to come up seeing as I already had a set of Series rims in shed 3 (yes I have that many sheds now that I number them) I was in no hurry but as is always the way a set of part worn G10 security tyres came up for the princely sum of Ā£60 so I snatched them up quickly. Yes they are part worn’s rather than new but the mileage I do in Mator is minimal so they are more than good enough for my needs but I now had to get them fitted and being the lazy bugger I am I could not face that back breaking chore of taking off old tyres then fitting the new ones with levers and hammers and bangs to hands wrists and god knows what else so I had a quite chat with the tyre fitters at work who agreed for Ā£30 they would deal with the issue for me and dispose of the scrap tyres on the Series rims…sounded good to me!

So this morning before I started work I dropped them off with the chaps then swung back around at lunchtime to pick them back up again on rims and half of the rubber returned home with me this evening.
I was in an odd mood when I got in and I cannot say why if I am honest I was just feeling a bit grumpy under the weather and after catching myself growling at my family for the smallest of reasons I took myself out of the equation back outside to get some proper physical exercise in the form of changing the wheels over and putting the ones removed into shed number 2 (told you there are a few).
I sweated the wheels off and on again the bloody things do really weigh more than you realise then stood back to gaze upon the backwards transformation…

Not bad at all really but I have not taken him for a spin yet as the light was getting low I am tired and it will give me something to do first thing in the morning because my young Landy mad nephew is returning to see me, well to see Mator really, and is looking forward to going for a spin I cannot let the kid down!
The wheels that came off of Mator will be going onto Brian the Discovery once I get the lift kit bought and fitted but I am going to have to save up for that because we have now officially become shed dragger’s…we have bought a caravan so when we go out with the Notts Landy Club we can join in properly and socialise in the evenings…but shed dragger’s none the less.

The wheels will look good on Brian though…

Been Published in a magazine!

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, May 16, 2015 20:36:32

Isn’t it amazing what a year can bring to you. I have quit smoking, built a Landy, published a book and the cherry on the cake is having an article I wrote about Mator’s rebuild being published in Land Rover Owners International!

So here’s a big thank you to all of you that have followed my drivelling rambling also for your responses encouragement and general micky taking because without them I wouldn’t have come this far. Mator’s journey is not yet over by any stretch there is still plenty to do on him and the astute among you will see and advert for his sale at the back of LRO but he is not for sale any more. I cannot bring myself to part with him after all of this hard work and now he is actually running well I have got to kinda like driving him without the fear of catastrophic breakdown looming over me.

Thanks again folks and keep your eye out for more updates…

Car Boots and Sunshine

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, May 10, 2015 12:21:14

Seeing as I have a long week ahead and probably should have had a relaxing lie in this morning I awoke bright and breezy at 6am of course. After fidgeting for half an hour managing to get some rather disturbing physically threatening grunting noises from Wifey who was trying to actually have a lie in next to me I got up and decided that I should actually put some oil back in the transfer box after changing the seal again a few days ago. If I didn’t get around to it no doubt I would end up forgetting, driving off for a bit then quickly killing the box so it needed to be done right now.

Seeing as it wasn’t my first time filling the bloody thing up with oil I had the process down pat and less than half an hour after walking outside the deed was done. Wondering what to do with the sunny morning that was fast warming up I tentatively woke up Wifey with a brew, one must offer sacrifices when you wake the dragon, and suggested a pootle out in Mator to the local car boot so I could check all was well with him.
There were no fiery deaths within seconds and she agreed this could be fun so soon enough I was behind the wheel firing up the engine. Mator roared away up teh road with easy gear changes now his gear stick had been replaced and we were soon running up to temperature nice and smooth…well as smooth as a Series 3 109″ ever gets.

I drove through the end of the city out into the countryside with no problems and the steering was better after taking a friends advice and having the tyre pressures pushed up to 40psi on the mud wheels that are fitted at the moment. I wasn’t in a state of apprehension waiting for something to break in fact I was smiling away in my noise filled cab as we trundled along at a steady 48mph listening to the fuel in the tank being sucked away quickly by the 2.25 petrol engine.
We headed into the car boot field and enjoyed the extra bouncing around off road and when I looked back as I was walking away from Mator I thought to myself “He does look bloody good”.

There was more countryside driving back to a supermarket to pick up a couple of bits and the trundle home.
No problems, no stress, no leaks (for now) and fuel still in the tank…I can honestly say this has been the most I have enjoyed driving Mator since I rebuilt him šŸ™‚

I had a spare couple of hours so…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Thu, May 07, 2015 12:03:30

Well that’s Mator’s transfer box seal done…again. Just got to pop the oil in but that will be tomorrows job.

Clutch Plates & Seals

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Tue, April 28, 2015 19:01:57

It has taken me two days to get around to writing up the blog about changing the clutch in Mator solely because it was such a harrowing ordeal I needed the time to recuperate my mind to cope with the ordeal of reliving it!

Now I know you are all thinking “Come on Nick it’s not that hard” and in principle you are all right about that but Mator decided he was going to be a bit of a shit and play up as much as he could.
Sunday morning started well enough as I got up early the sun was shining as I headed off to my friends who with another mate had volunteered their services to get Mator sorted clutch wise the old Landy even drove ok where as the last time I drove him he was slipping in good style. I arrived just before nine am had a coffee and we jumped on stripping out the flooring tunnel and gearstick to give easy access to the gearbox…

There were even smiles and laughter at this point…

It wasn’t long before the gearbox was out and it was obvious the oil seals on the crank shaft were fubared…

Now is it me or is that a LOT of oil! Soon had it cleaned up stripped out new seal fitted along with a new gasket though. Attention then turned to the clutch plates themselves and they were soon removed…

The picture doesn’t really show how much oil was on the clutch plates but there was and they had got really hot before as well as the burns showed when you looked up close. With that lot gone it showed that the oil seal on the engine side had also given up the ghost sharing the love of nasty black oil…
Cleaned that mess up and fitted the new seal. Out came the new clutch plates which were lined up using my friends fancy new tool…

Then we set to fitting the gearbox back in place with smug smiles on our faces because we had only been playing for about four hours so far and should all be done in time for an early tea and cold beer in the spring sunshiny day! …

But no dear reader that was not to be. We got the gearbox up splines lined up but would the bugger go in all the way???? No no it would not. We pushed we shoved we twisted we raised one side then the other, the front went up and down along with the back but no luck. We took the gearbox back out again to check the clutch plates and sure enough the clutch plate itself had dropped enough to stop the shaft going all the way in. Off it came again to be realigned up and then refitted. Up went the gearbox and after a few choice words some quite considerable time and lots of huffing and puffing it fitted into to place.
We were chuffed we felt like we had achieved something as we set to refitting prop shafts gearbox mountains and handbrakes. Soon enough all but the slave cylinder was in place the slave cylinder though had pushed its calliper nearly all the way out and it took some effort to get it back into place and fitted…

That done I fired Mator up the pressure plate span as did the shaft so I engaged a gear and….NOTHING. Nothing happened at all. There was no drive at all. All of our hearts sank we could see it on each others faces how much we really did not want to take him apart again. My friend then pipes up “I did put the clutch plate back on the right way around didn’t I?” We then had three grown men looking in the inspection plate to try and determine that without lugging what was now being referred to as “That bloody gearbox” out again.

We decided between us that it indeed was on the correct way so it must be something else. We pushed and pulled levers around to no avail and then we settled upon the slave cylinder again. We had to loosen up the bleed nipple to relieve some pressure to get that calliper back in place so some air must have got into the bloody thing. Out came a fancy air driven vacuum bleed kit and that folks is singularly the best bit of kit I have ever seen! It bled the clutch system in 30 seconds flat! Thank God my friend had it! That done all was sorted the drive engaged no problem at all much to three sweaty dirty grimy blokes relief.
A quick look at this point at my watch revealed we had been just over ten hours on this the sun was setting and we had all had enough so we set to popping the floor and tunnel back into place with me insisting “just two bolts per panel so I can get it home” and to my surprise the lads wanted to carry on “getting it right” but no enough was enough these guys had given up their Sunday for me already we were all getting hungry because we had eaten the sugary treats hours before that I had brought with me so I made them throw in the towel.
One trip around the block to make sure all was right and with the tools all put to bed we had been at it eleven hours!!!!!!!!!
I still had to put fuel in as I was on fumes and drive one of the lads home and this was all without any major issues we had done a good job. Well I say no issues but after I dropped the lad off I noticed that when in fourth gear and letting off of the gas there was a knocking noise on the gearbox just a clunk nothing massive and I realised as I got home I had not tightened up one of the gearbox mounts I was supposed to do so hell after a day like we had just had I could live with that.
So I have still to refit the floor properly along with the tunnel and tighten up that mounting bolt but that can wait until the weekend when I can motivate myself to get the tools out again.

2nd Edition…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, April 25, 2015 21:31:19

Right then the proof has come back on the changes I have made to the paperback book and I have approved them so the hard copy is available again! (Well it will be in a few hours)
SO if you have the first dozen or so copies with the black borders on the pages that was a very very limited run wink emoticon all the new books printed from Sunday will be just boring old white pages!

First copy!

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, April 25, 2015 15:12:19

Well I came home today after a fun filled meeting at the bank about mortgages and the such to find a brown parcel on my doorstep. Now I did not recall ordering anything that needed to be delivered in discreet packaging and it turned out no one else in teh house was expecting anything so with some amount of curiosity I opened it up to find the first copy of my paperback in it!

To say I am chuffed is an understatement but there were a few issues I was not happy with so the book may be offline sales wise for a few hours whilst I sort them but don’t worry if you were all poised to buy one right now it will be up for sale again within hours!

This really is a big tick for me off of the old bucket list šŸ™‚

Paperback Published!!

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Thu, April 23, 2015 21:34:42

Well here it is folks the paperback version of “The Project Has Landed…”

Who would have thought an ape like me would publish a book!?

It’s Official!!!!!!!

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Tue, April 21, 2015 20:34:43

I am only bloody publishing “The Project Has Landed…” in paperback!!!!

Copies available within the week folks šŸ™‚

Summer days and Slipping

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Tue, April 21, 2015 20:30:31

If I am honest I have not done a great deal with Mator of late. I put him up for sale of course but after several rather insulting offers by folk over the net and then the usual folk not turning up I have ended up not being that bothered about him going in fact I have been enjoying him a lot more than I had before with little trips out at least once a week.

Well today Wifey decided it was a pleasant Spring evening and quite rightly we should head out for a walk to enjoy the sunset so I took this opportunity to grab the keys to Mator and take him to the riverside. The drive would be about ten miles each way no problem for the old boy of late and soon enough we were heading out and breaking his 100 mile barrier of miles done since the rebuild.
After we had settled in shouting a sort of conversation across the cab noise you know the usual for a Series when I noticed the revs seemed a little higher than normal so I took my foot off of the clutch pedal which is a bad habit I have got the revs stayed the same.
You know that stomach churning feeling you get when you realise that something is wrong? Yep I had that bugger in droves at that moment because in a split second the little issues that I had seen ploughed through my mind…the little oil drip coming out of the wading hole, the clutch adjustment on the master cylinder a few weeks before and the action of putting my wallet down on my bedside cabinet when I got in from work with no recollection of picking it up again three guesses where the RAC card was I would need for recovery home should it get that far!

No need to panic though I just went back in time twenty years or so in my head to when I was young care free and didnt give a monkeys if a motor was dying I would just try to nurse it back home with the only problem being the sodding great hill that lay between us and there! Wifey did point out at this point we could just go the flatter countryside way back instead which we ended up doing keeping the revs low along with the speed because the mud tyres that are on it are bloody awful on tarmac anyway and the old boy just plodded on noisily the ten miles home through very pleasant sun soaked Nottinghamshire countryside which was really very relaxing considering he could have decided he had had enough at any moment.
To my surprise he even backed up the driveway with no fuss at all!
A kind friend has already volunteered to help out with the replacement because I have never done one before on a landy and do you know what I think Mator might just be a bit happier then just pottering around once every week or so.

Paperback book…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Mon, April 20, 2015 20:09:41

Again I have been a bit quiet but with good reason! After publishing “The project has landed…” as an ebook I have had lots of enquires about releasing it in paperback book form well I am pleased to say after much research that will not leave me out of pocket on such a venture I think I have it sorted but will know more over the next couple of days…

So stay tuned keep an eye out I am hoping there will be a link up very shortly leading you to where to but it from! Oh and I would like to point out I will be making bugger all either well about 12p per copy I just thought it would be good for those of you that wanted my drivel in paper form šŸ™‚

Best Seller????

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, April 11, 2015 08:06:25

If you search for “The Project Has Landed” on amazon somehow it says it’s the number on best seller in “Automotive”…don’t know how because it hasn’t sold many lol but hey it looks good smile emoticonBest seller/


The Project Has Landed... Posted on Thu, April 09, 2015 17:08:58

Umm I kind of published a book about the Land Rover rebuild and all the responses I got taking the mickey warts and all so if you would like to buy it please just click on the link šŸ™‚


The Project Has Landed... Posted on Tue, April 07, 2015 18:38:20

Just playing with pictures…can you tell I am ill with nothing better to do!

Mator is up For Sale

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Wed, April 01, 2015 19:05:38

Well Mator is up for sale because we want to buy a house and need some extra money to the deposit šŸ™
After all of the work I have put in I am and will be gutted to see him go but needs must so here is the link for one of the sites he is for a very reluctant sale on…

Mator is For Sale

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, March 29, 2015 21:48:36

First things first I am only selling “Mator” my series 3 landy because we are buying a house and need the money for a deposit quite frankly after all the blood sweat tears and the hospital visit he caused me I don’t want to see him go but they have been well worth it.

This is a unique opportunity in the fact that you can see the whole rebuild from when it was dragged out of a farm yard to the last day I drove it every bit of work done has been documented laughed at and shared across a few of the main Land Rover forums so you can see what I did wrong then put right what has been replaced and rebuilt so you know exactly where you stand with him if you want to buy him.

SO where to start?? He has the military chassis a recon military engine running 24 volts across the board each and every dent is as it was from when it was demobbed then parked up for the seventeen years before I got him. I did not want to change them or fix them they are part of it’s history. I have the MOD list of who it served with.

In a very short list the following has been done but this is the abbreviated version…alternator rebuild, brake system rebuild, master/slave clutch rebuild, new shocks, new gearbox mounts exhaust fuel system from tank to carb, undersealed, doors replaced painted and fitted, all fluids replaced and engine serviced. This is no where near everything that has been done please have a look at the blog rebuild at under the “Land Rover rebuild” section for the whole shebang or search for “the project has landed” on the landyzone forum.

I have done about 74 miles only since the rebuild but this will climb a little as I enjoy driving him before he goes. It is an old landy and I don’t doubt it will present a problem or two as time goes on after being stood around for so long but as he is at this moment is in great condition fully driveable with his 2 1/4 petrol engine and you are welcome to come and view. You are also welcome to a test drive as long as you bring me proof of insurance to be able to drive fully comp or I have the cash from you in my hands…you break him you have bought him!

The only things not to original military spec are the front seats wheels and headlights so if you want to put him back to military standard.

Ā£3995 ono Nottingham area.

He knows what I am thinking…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, March 28, 2015 19:08:50

My vehicle collection is getting bigger and all of this without the added extra motors that will turn up when the kids start driving heaven knows what we will do then! There is now a new game called musical motors I have to play depending on which one I would like to use and seeing as I had to move Mator anyway I decided to use him to run an errand of dropping a parcel off at a collection point a few miles away.

I think he knows I want to sell him to go towards the house deposit because he normally has some sort of issue just for the hell of it you know like a new strange noise or running a bit rough but this morning he was a pleasure from the first turn of the key until I parked him up. Having set the carb last week he ran like a dream drove even better with smooth steering nice gear changes great acceleration and I swear he was even being as quiet as he possibly could be. In my minds eye he was acting like a dog that has been a bit bad and is now looking at you from the side of his eyes with a bowed head being as good as possible so you will love him again. He was faultless…

There was even a chap who walked up to me out of the blue at the parcel drop off point asking if I owned Mator complimenting me on what good condition he was in can Land Rovers pay people to say nice things about them?

Times are a changing.

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Wed, March 25, 2015 18:05:52

Things seem to be changing at the moment and quite drastically to boot! I have started my new job which will hopefully send me off in a new career direction with new challenges then there are the plans to move to a new home in Derbyshire next summer and it is this that has us really thinking.

We rent at the moment and the plan was to continue renting up in Derbyshire because we did not think we would A) get a mortgage or B) want one anyway as our plans were to buy a little old wreck in Northern Spain to retire to. The problem now is we have found out we can get a mortgage so perhaps we should buy a house next summer in Derbyshire instead of renting then if we want to move out and retire to Spain in our later years we sell up and do so or maybe we will be happy in our little home in the countryside…

So after much thought we have decided to buy a house and act like we are proper grown ups…pfft who wants to be a grown up anyway?? Joking aside it makes sense as we would get a mortgage that would be about the cost of rent then we get to sell up at the end of it and spend any inheritance the kids think they will be getting and post it all online just to rub their noses in it a it lol.

Can you see where I am heading with this yet? No? then I will enlighten you šŸ™‚ The only problem initially with buying a house is that you need a deposit and we will save hard for this over the next year but there will be a chunk left missing and if I am honest there is only one thing we have of value and I thought I was going to put him away for a few more years while he raises in value but needs must.

I am going to have to sell Mator.

Now I could drive him for a year then stick a Fresh MOT on him and sell him then but I have bought the Discovery to play in and Mator will not be getting much use anyway so after I have swapped his wheels over this weekend he will be going up for sale on the market as teh fresh new rebuild he is.
It is with a heavy heart I do this but I know it is the right thing to do because I don’t want to leave him sitting around wasting away again after all of the hard work and effort I have put into restoring him and any potential buyer is in a unique position of seeing exactly what I have done to him over the course of the rebuild online someone should really get the some pleasure out of him.

Yes I am sad as he helped me keep off of the cigarettes kept me writing and made me a few friends along the way but the future calls I am getting older and the idea of eventually paying no rent appeals to me for my winter years.
So keep an eye out tell your friends that something good is coming up and once the pictures have been taken and the adverts written I will let you all know but whoever buys him don’t look back when you drive him away I don’t want you to see me crying…

Transfer box seals & Oil slicks

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, March 22, 2015 07:43:18

I have been quite lucky with Mator my old Series 3 Landy where oil leaks are concerned most people who own Land Rovers constantly joke about them “marking” their spots on driveways with oil leaks but mine has been great apart from just one leak from the front of the transfer box so I decided it was about time I tackled it because as leaks go it was quite a big one.

Up at the crack of dawn as is my norm these days I grabbed a brew got the baby grow on grabbed my toolbox and slid underneath the Landy to start taking it apart again. First things to come off where the four prop shaft bolts the first three came off with no problems at all but the fourth in good Land Rover tradition rounded off as soon as I put some pressure on it so out came the grinder…

I should point out I had drained the oil out of the transfer box as well before I started taking bits off of it even I am not that daft! With the bolts off I moved the prop shaft to one side and was faced with a nut with a split pin through it…

The split pin came out easy enough but that bolt decided we were in a fight for our lives and it seriously thought it was going to win…it nearly did. You have to use a pry bar or something similar to stop the whole thing from turning whilst simultaneously trying to undo the bolt that has been in place for years and years and years. I swore at it scrapped my knuckles threw things across the driveway used limbs of my body in better ways than I have ever done in a game of Twister but it would not move.

I walked away and made a brew muttering to myself what sort of idiot buys an old Land Rover anyway and came to the conclusion I must be some sort of masochist.

Ten minutes on and my blood pressure approaching something back to normal I assumed the Twister position underneath the Landy and had another stab at it. It undid as if it was only finger tight…bloody Land Rovers but I shook my head smiled to myself and carried on dismantling it all when a river of oil came flooding out of the front of the box all down my arm soaking the baby grow and the clothes I had on underneath. The angle of the driveway must have caused it to sit in there well away from the drainage plug just waiting for me to do something stupid like remove the shaft and seal and give it a way out!

At this point I just had to laugh out loud wipe myself down and keep digging until I got to the seal which looked like it was in good condition but I after getting all the way into it I changed it anyway. The rebuild went smoothly with it all going back together easily and I replaced the nuts and bolts on the drive shafts with new filled up the transfer box with oil started it up and rove it up and down the driveway a bit to then see it leaking from exactly the same place as before…I was not in the least bit surprised. I have come to terms that this will be my leak and it is quite a good one but this is to make up for the fact it doesn’t leak much from anywhere else.

The second job of the day was to take it for a spin and set up the carb properly as last time I was out it seemed to be underpowered. My mechanic friend who had turned up after the messy oil and seal incident good timing on his part eagerly jumped into the passenger seat for a ride out in “something old school” his words but he is right and off we went. After a few miles it had warmed up and was running way too lean so after a few stops here and there the mixture was tweaked up the tick over turned down and he difference is astounding.

You may have noticed I have been having a bit of a love hate relationship with Mator of late. I have loved building him and I love working on him but I don’t really relish the idea of driving him too far let alone off roading in him but having said that I wouldn’t want to sell him either so I have solved the problem…I have just bought myself a Discovery to play off road in and use in the wintertime because I am getting fed up of sliding around on my motorbike on the way to work and back then.
Because I have bought another toy I will change a couple of bits on Mator like the wheels and seats giving him more of the Military sense he had before tipping his hat at the service he provided in his last life.

BUT this means I have a new project again so watch this space for the next build it isn’t going to be long…

It does go off road…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, March 15, 2015 12:15:56

I sat staring at Mator this morning and thought bugger it I am off to the local car boot just so I can have a drive in him. He does seem to take an age to warm up engine wise I have noticed and runs a little on the rough side until he does but he is an old man.

Here’s a picture to prove he is slowly starting to venture off of the beaten track…

Gearbox Bangs

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Mon, March 09, 2015 13:02:18

Seeing as its the last day of my annual leave and there were chores to be run I decided what better way to do it than in the Landy. Driving it has been growing on me as of late after a bumpy start so using it often seems to be the best idea to keep it running right well at least it does in my head.

After various dull chores were completed I had to drive to the local timber reclaim yard about five miles away I got there no problem loaded up a couple of huge sacks of sawdust for the chickens coop knowing a bit bit of mess in Mator doesn’t come with the same backlash as getting Wifeys car dusty I jumped back in pulled off in first to find my way blocked by a forklift truck taking a pallet off of a truck. “No worries” I thought as I watched the job being done with first gear still selected and the clutch pedal pushed in…

Now I best point out here the gearbox has not been the best since I got Mator on the road with difficult gear changes most of the time but I had just put this down to being the typical soup bowl gearbox effect of a series land rover and got used to it.

A couple of minutes later the forklift driver was done so I started to pull forward then went to change gear…nope that was not going to happen the gear stick was stuck fast in first and did not want to play or move so I quickly dipped the clutch braked to a stop and tried again thinking this feels like a master or slave cylinder issue when there was an almighty bang as I was putting gentle pressure on the gear stick and it popped out of first.

“Well that’s buggered it” I figured wondering if I had the RAC card in my wallet but to my amazement I could select gears no problem at all. In fact I could now select gears easier and better than before as in ever before they all seemed to be in the right position on the end of the gear stick the Landy drove lovely all the way home.

Now I wonder whether I have actually broken something big inside the gearbox or whether it has freed something off properly that has not been right for the last fifty miles or so since it has been running again? Who knows but any suggestions are welcome but I suppose I will just have to “let it develop” again and not keep it in gear when waiting to move.

Land Rovers eh! Gotta love em!

Cycling & BBQ

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, March 07, 2015 17:26:26

You all know I don’t sleep a great deal but my limits have been pushed even for me. Complain I cant really because the cause of my lack of sleep has been a trip to New York that I wont bore you Landy nuts about on this post but there’s a bit about it on my site but part of the return trip was the “Red Eye” overnight back so I ended up staying awake for the best part of two days.

This had a bit of a strange knock on effect in the fact that I finally got to bed last night then slept for ten hours straight which is unusual to say the least but buggered me up meeting up with Nottingham Land Rover Club for the day off roading because I got up so late. I jumped out of bed text a friend in the club saying I would be a couple of hours then ten minutes later I felt like I had been hit by a train. Exhausted rough tired groggy and generally feeling like a sack of shit I soon realised I was not going to be spending the day playing off road.

So another text later saying I wouldn’t be going then a couple back calling me a poof (quite rightly but hell it’s been a busy week) the day was open to new suggestions. I forced some breakfast down my throat rehydrated as best I could when my youngest daughter suggested a drive out in Mator to the woods where we could do some gentle cycling to get the blood pumping again…make or break time for a body reset.

The bikes were thrown into the Landy along with lots of water for me and Mator took off on his longest drive to date and he performed flawlessly all the way there…

There was a strange clicking noise to start as we got up to speed but this soon passed away and I havn’t heard it again since I guess like all good old motors it is freeing up some parts that have not moved at speed in quite some time.

We had a nice six mile cycle around the woods at a very steady pace…

and I found my grogginess dissipating as my heart rate increased so much so I built up an appetite so maybe it was time for a cheeky lunch out treat with my daughter.

The first few places I tried had full car parks and seeing as the Landy has a turning circle the size of a boat and the fact I am not that used to him yet we carried on racking up some rather enjoyable miles through the Nottinghamshire countryside. The typical soup bowl gearbox is challenging to say the least but I seem to be developing a knack for actually getting the gears I want and the ride is either settling down by loosening up it springs after years of resting or I am just loosing the feeling in my body from the constant bouncing around in it either way its becoming a more pleasant experience.

50 mph seems to be the high speed it wants to sit at once out of the city where the steering still works without too much drift keeping me in a relatively straight line. Not too shabby for a four geared 2.25 petrol that sat around outside doing nothing for more than a decade. The temp gauges both oil and water sit just above the N on the gauges at speed and don’t jump up when you come to a stop and there are not any major leaks to be seen.

We found a nice pub for some lunch the BBQ burgers were “to die for” I have been reliably informed by my daughter and just about every bloke that walked past the Landy stopped for a quick look at it and I know this because we sat in a window seat to keep an eye on it…ok I am lying I just wanted to look at it parked up somewhere else other than my driveway!

All in all not a bad day in the end considering I felt so rough at the start of it and after looking forward to going off roading for weeks then not making it. Mator will now be used a bit more often to keep his wheels turning and finally I am using him for the reasons I built him spending time with my family doing outdoorsy activities..oh and bloody off roading I will get him out for some off roading!

Steering Wheels & Carbs

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, February 28, 2015 17:32:52

I have been a bit quiet of late I know but I do have a good excuse and a letter from my Mum so if you have the time I will tell you why.

You know how you get bored with work think the grass is greener on the other side and wish you could be there. That feeling that life is passing you by and how the hell did you end up doing what you are doing for a living even though the money is good well thats where I have been for a few months now but I have enough about me to know which side my bread is buttered so I started to look around seriously for another job when out of the blue an advert went up at work looking for another Driver trainer to be added to their team so I jumped at it and applied. Whether or not I would make an arse of myself I didn’t know but I was invited much to my surprise to interview that would include a ten minute presentation by me about anything I wanted as long as it was within the transport industry remit.

Well this had opened a can of worms hadn’t it I mean the last time I had looked at Powerpoint was donkeys years back and now I had to make one up from scratch with “updated” software that I had no idea what most of it did but I got stuck in and after two long weekend days had a presentation put together which left me to practice it making sure I sounded like I knew what I was on about without tripping over my tongue letting my lisp and stutter return like a steam train crashing through the end of the tracks.

“Sod it” I thought I will test it out on the family so the poor buggers had to endure me babbling spitting lisping and stuttering my way through my creation…twice…then twice more until I had it down pat. A couple of showers later for them to rinse away the spittle and I thought “I might be ok at this” I put it to bed until the interview the next day.

The interview went well there were only a couple of folk grilling me and it was soon time to get my presentation going and it was at this point the main interviewer went off and got the head honcho of the contract to sit in and watch. I mean talk about sending your nerves up through all of the notches no pressure eh!! Somehow I got through it sounding bloody stupid on the inside of my head but portraying a calm confident figure to all present who all gave me good feedback. I made it through the first hurdle to the second a few days later much to my surprise which was an extended driving assessment which included a talking drive from me saying all I could see and was doing…me doing that whilst nervous trying to control my Artic trying not to lisp stutter or give the assessor a shower in my spit…well it went ok despite my nerves and I even managed to answer the questions he threw at me when I didn’t need to be talking correctly! Turns out we were down to three candidates and they will be seeing the final one next week so we will all be informed by Friday who has got the job.

The reason I really wanted it was because it’s a good sideways move with extensive training paid for by the company that you get to keep of course it’s a direction I had been considering but put on the back burner due to the costs involved so an opportunity like this doesn’t come up very often. Hell I have given it my best shot so what will be will be eh šŸ˜‰

Anyways folks you don’t want to hear anymore on that you want to know what I have done to the Landy and I have managed to have a couple of nice days on different bits and bobs which has been relaxing and bloody enjoyable to boot I do like to have a tinker!

Wednesday night was meeting at the pub night with Notts Landy Club also the first time I had the chance to show Mator off to them so I rushed home from work dumped the bike jumped in the Landy and shot straight up there. Folk liked him with oohhs and ahhs but they would wouldn’t they after all they are all Land Rover nuts but I did notice the steering was a bit tight not just heavy then with a bit of a realisation I realised I had not checked any of the steering fluid in both the boxes so that was the first job to do on Friday afternoon as well as trying to figure out why the dashboard lights didn’t work as well.

It rained hard on the way home though and in about fifteen seconds in true landy fashion I could not see bugger all out of the windows for steam so that coupled with the spare wheel cover I had fitted to the wheel on the bonnet opening like a parachute I drove home using the power of the force more than any of my own senses.

Friday afternoon arrived I checked the steering fluid which was all good the stiffness wasn’t that bad and has loosened up since so it was probably more in my mind than anything else after a long day driving a truck but the dash lights were next…

Front off again and time to trace spaghetti which I promptly lost somewhere behind the dashboard but found the other end behind the convoy light switch where it was supposed to be but it has at some point been cut off and taped up. I put the dash back together thought “sod it” and left it be for now. I will put it on the list for a summer dry day job I am not pulling the whole dash out looking for some squaddies bodge in the cold and wet!

This morning I got to take the longest drive in the old boy yet and I have to admit after hating it before the old boy is now growing on me partly to the fact he runs right now has not over heated spat his dummy out in a big way or caught fire. We went to collect a set of series wheels because after getting rid of the ones that came with it I decided that was a mistake and I want a set for back up in case I buy the Discovery I have been threatening to do which I would use Mators wheels on and fit some 7.50 16s back onto him like he should have.

The wheels were not bad…

But a quick coat of NATO green put them back where they needed to be…

No rush to find the tyres they will come along when they are ready at the right money.
Now what to do it was only lunchtime so I decided to see if I could mess up the Zenith carb rebuild I had planned to create me a spare.

I grabbed the carb the rebuild kit thought “how hard can it be?” and set to. I surprised myself if you havn’t rebuilt a carb because yo thought it might be too hard I strongly suggest you give it a bash because in under two hours I had mine stripped cleaned out and rebuilt. It’s nice to have a spare as back up incase my cheapy copy gives up the ghost!

That’s it folks we are up to date next job will be sorting out the rear interior after I have been off road next Saturday for the first time in him next week. That should be a good update!

Fuel lines & Fine tuning.

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Fri, February 20, 2015 15:42:52

Today has been a good day it started well enough with Wifey bringing me a brew in bed so I sat there enjoying a relaxing start to the day planning ahead the things I had to do. It started with taking the cheap inline fuel filter out of the Landy…

Now this filter has been the cause of some concern seeing as it never seemed to fill up with fuel and as the new carb I fitted seemed to struggle with a bit of fuel starvation from time to time I decided for the few minutes it would take to remove the filter and fit a pipe in its place it was worth doing to see what effect it would have…

With that done I had to hop onto the motorbike because it has been running pretty roughly this past week or so and as it is my daily runner I couldn’t ignore its ever increasing complaints about running badly. Turned out the previous owner had put over a litre too much oil in it as well as the spark plugs being as old as the hills and cheap crap to boot. So an oil change new plugs fitted then a good all round clean up of connections along with liberal amounts of WD40 around the place I expected a nice purr to the engine.

It wouldn’t even turn over! I sat there scratching my head wondering what I had done wrong?? After a bit of bad language and wiggling of connections it fired up sounding better than it ever has done. A ride around the block confirmed the fact that it now ran like it should along with more power than before so that job was struck off of the list.

I looked at the Landy with a sinking feeling in my stomach because I had to take it for a drive to warm it through properly to make sure the carb was set up right but after our last drive with it running like a bag of spanners I wasn’t looking forward to finding out I had done it wrong or not enjoying driving it again. So with apprehension I got into the drivers seat fired the old boy up then pulled out onto the dual carriage way.

The ride was smooth the engine pulled smoothly with no spluttering hiccuping coughing or stalling. The gear changes were smoother than before probably due to having the right amount of oil in the box now and I found myself relaxing into the ride. Gearbox along with engine noise was well down on my last outing then I came to a steep hill realising this was going to be the next test. Foot pushing down on the accelerator the two and a quarter engine responded well as it should pulling me steadily up the hill still gaining speed. Next was the down hill stretch testing for backfires spluttering popping and of course the brakes again all was well with no overrun just a nice smooth deceleration.

By now I was really starting to relax into it and despite my earlier worries and apprehensions I was enjoying myself. Mator was driving like a different motor almost like a newer motor certainly the best I had ever felt him go so far and my confidence in him build up quite nicely. So after a few miles I ended up home then with a quick tweak on the tickover of the carb he was parked up on the driveway and I have the confidence in starting to use him regularly to see what new ways he can breakdown.

Oil and Radio’s

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, February 15, 2015 17:50:51

Off we went to the first 4×4 show of our season this morning at Donington and it was nice to be out and about staring at other folks motors and all of the bits and bobs that you can bolt on to your pride and joy but it is not a big show hence its held indoors which was nice on a foggy cold morning it doesn’t take long to wander around it.

Now as you know I ahve been thinking of what to do with my now more or less rebuilt Land Rover as times will be changing in a year or so and today was a good opportunity to have a look at what can be done with Discoveries from the subtle to the outrageous! Well Wifey does like a Discovery it turns out and I have been told in no uncertain terms by her that I am NOT to sell Mator on but keep him and maybe return him back to military standard not in a full FFR set up way but just not to mess him about. Then what we will do is buy a Discovery make it off road ready and we will both play with it and it will be there for winter driving if I need it instead of the bike!

Anyone else think my Wife is a keeper!

So I will be looking soon enough for a Disco project to add to the collection which is superb and I am looking forward to the challenge of playing with a new project getting just how I want it. After a quick drive into Derbyshire for some lunch we got home and I set back to sorting the gearbox oil out on Mator. When I ran him out a couple of weeks back he was pretty noisy and upon further investigation he needed quite a bit of oil in the gearbox after I checked with a couple of groups I was taking the right plug out and not heading toward an oil shower. As I was underneath I checked the transfer box oil level and it turned out there was next to nothing in there so I am glad I looked before driving any sort of distance. How I overlooked doing this on the rebuild baffles me but at least it is done now!

I did manage to pick up some of the correct electrical connectors at the Donington show to wire in the CB. This only took a couple of minutes and it was nice to see my Christmas present crackle to life for the first time but it appeared there was no one local who wanted to play Smokey and the Bandit with me which spoilt my fun just a bit.

Right then I am off to trawl the tinterweb looking for a cheap Disco see you on the other side!

New Carb & Timing

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, February 14, 2015 17:06:21

It has been a hell of a week so far one of my daughters got most unwell and ended up in hospital so my place was of course by her side as I watched with a dawning horror the barrage of tests they put the poor kid through and my God a couple of them were invasive. She was strong and handled it all well now hopefully she is on the mend as all of the nasty things they thought she may have have been ruled out which is a relief but there is nothing worse than looking at your own child lying sick in a hospital bed wishing it was you instead. I would also like to take this opportunity to say thank you to all of the staff at Kettering General Hospital who treated her in such a great way honestly folks you would not have got better treatment if you had paid for it privately and to all those who knock our NHS in my opinion you are wrong because they have been superb!

So with all of that over a few sleepless days and then a training day away with work it has been an exhausting week so this morning as I lay there in bed proving to myself yet again that the days of lie ins are far behind me the fact that the new carb had arrived for the Landy and needed fitting. I snuck out of bed got dressed and took my first cup of tea outside with me to have a look at what lay ahead…

Air was being sucked in somewhere so out with the old for a complete replacement. Much to my surprise it all come off easily from detaching the choke cable and throttle linkage to removing the two nuts that held the carb in place. As I stood there in amazement that I had only had a sip of my tea and it was still hot showing how quickly the old carb had come of I dug the new carb out of it’s packaging and set to fixing it into place…

Again everything slipped back into place easily and I set up the carb roughly by turning the mixture screw all the way in first until it stopped then turned it anticlockwise 1 1/2 to 2 turns out. Then I primed the carb up by pumping the fuel pump a few times and gingerly turned the ignition key thinking there was no way it would be that easy…it was! The engine fired straight up so with a smirk I let it warm through and run up to temperature.

As I stood next to the engine I could hear air being sucked in somewhere on the carb but it still ran far better than the old carb did. So I looked around and saw that the air pipe on my Landy fitted below the carb on the manifold rather than on the carb itself like it should do and a quick look at the old carb showed that the air inlet had been welded up on it so I turned off the engine and set to getting some old fuel pipe attached to the new carb air inlet which I folded over on itself creating a seal that can easily be removed if needed.

With that sorted and teh engine ticking over again I set to giving it a few tweaks to set the carb right but do you know when you have been trying fix something for so long you start hearing extra noises and it never sounds quite right…well I got there so I did the only sensible thing I could I turned it off and walked away from it for a while. I have a friend coming over next week to have a listen and drive just to have an extra set of ears on it because I think it is probably fine but sometimes you just need someone to tell you you are a pratt and confirm it.

Another point to make here is that I have decided I want a Discovery as my next project. Now I am on no rush for it but I will be looking and I may just may put Mator up for sale if and when I am ready to get a Disco. My reasoning behind thie is two fold. Firstly I have loved the rebuild it has been great fun and I want to go around again for another go and secondly we are going to be moving into Derbyshire next year and there will be times when riding the motorbike to work just wont cut it in snow and ice so a Disco would be better to use than Mator seeing as he would cost a small fortune to do the 40 -50 mile daily commute with the petrol engine as well as reliability issues.

Before you all start shouting “Keep them both” I cannot afford to run two of them and before you now shout “stick a 200tdi in” I wont do that it is more or less military 24v standard and if someone wanted to put it back they would just need to change the wheels seats and chuck the radio gear back in place. That and these old Military Series 3’s are getting harder to find.

SO a good mornings work and the next job on the list will be seeing if I can (don’t laugh) stop the slight leak from the gearbox providing no one ends up in hospital work don’t send me miles away and the rain holds off.

Number plates

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, February 08, 2015 18:24:57

After fitting the rear number plate last week it became apparent that the ladder does indeed block a lot of it off but just in case plod takes a dim view of this I ordered a set of extra plates to see what I could do about it.

I thought where could I put this that it wont look stupid but it seems that this was a bit of a tall order. In the end I settled with attaching it onto the roof rack…

Looks a bit pants if I am honest but at least plod wont be on my back for something stupid.

Then there was rough running.

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, February 08, 2015 15:17:57

I apprehensively jumped into the Landy with Wifey joining me on teh passenger side and fired him up. He started well enough of course but he always has I checked the road and set off clunking through the gears wiping the condensation that appeared instantly on the windscreen all the while trying to keep his drifting steering in a semi straight line.

1/4 mile down and he is going ok as we attack the first roundabout double back and made it no worries to the petrol station…

I had noticed there was a bit of a delay when you put your foot down on the accelerator and the engine actually doing anything but I thought that might just be me some how.

We then drove a few miles to the next stop which was a sunny supermarket car park as Wifey had things to pick up but it was nice to see him in a different place for a change…

As we wandered around the Supermarket I was deep in thought as to why this delay was happening on acceleration as it seemed to be getting worse. I knew there would be teething problems but at least one trip out without one would be nice but another realisation was dawning upon me and it was one I did not really care for…I hadn’t enjoyed driving him at all. I have driven plenty of them over the years so the ride handling and noise were not unexpected but I hadn’t smiled once and I am hoping that it’s because it’s running a little rough and once I have fixed that I will enjoy him again.

Maybe I just enjoyed the rebuild…I do quite fancy doing a Discovery as in conversion to off road beast but that will be some time down the line.

Anyway after buying what looked like stuff that could have waited until the shopping was delivered tomorrow night we walked back out into the car park and I couldn’t see the old boy to start with…

Must of been the camouflage colouring and the other folk parking up with nothing better to do on a Sunday morning šŸ˜‰

Driving home the flat hesitation seemed to get worse so I set to looking into it as soon as he was back onto the driveway. I checked for air intake issues but all was fine then checked the ignition system but all was good there as well but after doing some research and asking lots of questions it would seem it is the carb that is at fault which is no surprise seeing as it was parked up for years so a new one will be ordered today ready for fitting asap. I will pick up a rebuild kit as well and have a stab at rebuilding the old one as well for a new experience.

So watch this space and see if we can get the old chap running sweetly once again.

The First Time

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, February 08, 2015 09:30:19

Well I sit here working up the bravery to take Mator out for his first run. We wont be going far just around the city to do a few chores but I feel as nervous as a virgin on prom night.

This is all depending on whether I get to the petrol station before he runs out as he is running on fumes!

See you all on the other side…

Charging and Connections

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Fri, February 06, 2015 20:54:57

Mator has decided that even though he has been loved and lavished attention on over the last ten months he did not want to play out. He was not going to give up any electrical power had gone into a full scale sulk not even pointing me in the right direction of where to look to start.

So I asked those good folk online in various forums and got a dozen different maybes so I started with the Alternator. I stripped it out of the engine and suck it indoors because what I was about to do was fiddly as hell for my monkey fingers and sitting down at the dining table to do it seemed to be a good idea. What I forgot was that I was not the only one off of work today and just when I could not be making more of a mess Wifey walked in the door with a look of horror on her face at the various bits of very greasy alternator gubbings strewn across the tabletop. I don’t think I deserved the tirade of abuse that followed seeing as I had put newspaper down on the table before I started but it seems that this was not quite enough to appease the woman of my life so I suppose that will cost me a bunch of flowers tomorrow.

Anyway I stripped the back of the alternator off to check and clean the connections and bushes…

It was filthy in there and greasy as hell so a good clean out with Meths sorted that problem and the bushes were showing wear but still had some life left in them so I put it all back together did not loose any of the tiny screws and refitted into engine bay. The key turned the engine fired up so I checked the batteries they were still only showing 24v.


I resigned myself to the cost of a new alternator but I asked again on the forums and was told to run through it all again checking for loose connections etc. One comment stood out as the chap said “check the cables going into the regulator box are not over tightened and popped the retaining D ring out as this will cause the wiring to work loose” Now this struck a cord because way back when I had started to strip the landy down for rebuild I undid a lot of that cabling by mistake but hell it could not be that easy could it?

Yes it could. In my early day eagerness I had over tightened them and popped out the D ring so I put it all back together reconnected the batteries and fired up the engine…

A healthy 28+volts coming through and charging nicely. So a days worth of buggering about because I buggered up one connection months and months ago.

Still at least it kept me away from Wifeys wrath for a few hours.

You couldn’t make it up…

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sun, February 01, 2015 12:27:01

Well the sun was shining I only had a couple of chores to do and Wifey was off out so today was the day Mator and I were going on our first proper drive. I had planned to take lots of pictures of it in different places just to show it out and about but first I had a couple of things to do.

Soon enough the bike was fuelled up the parcels dropped of for delivery from some junk I had sold on Ebay and I was sitting in my Landy feeling good with a grin onmy face ready to roll.

I popped the keys in the ignition turned them to get only a flat battery click. I mean for Gods sake I only had it running yesterday but then a memory popped in of me thinking the lights looked a little on teh dim side but I put it down to the sun being out for a change.

So I dragged the batteries out and put them on charge then set to seeing if it was anything obvious as to why the batteries weren’t charging. First and final stop was at the generator where it was obvious that the main cable that comes out of it to the shunt box was very loose. That’ll probably be it then because any more loose and it would have dropped off.

Next chance to drive the old boy??? That will be next weekend then…bugger.

Number Plates & Cleaning

The Project Has Landed... Posted on Sat, January 31, 2015 16:18:32

I awoke to the sight if snow falling yet again and it was pretty bloody old to boot. The cough that my eldest daughter had donated to me overnight had settled in for the long haul and my bones ache from a mixture of hard work with germs…the day ahead didn’t bode well. The plan was get some plates made up and go and have a bit of a play in the Landy but seeing as I was moving at the pace of an elderly snail plans were thrown out of the window.

I have worked so hard then worried so much on this old motor that another day wont hurt. The number plates were bought when I finally ventured out then as I went to fit them I saw that the wiring was out and about from tracing the brake light issue last weekend so I set to putting all of that back into place. That done it was time to fit the plates! I carefully marked them up in a geeky way as to where the holes needed to be gently drilled through and after laughing at the guys in the shops who wanted Ā£2:79 for a pair of capped number plate screws I bolted them on instead…

I mean what difference does it make when it comes to me breaking them off road in a few weeks?? because I will I am sure and in anticipation of this I have just ordered a cheap replacement off of fleabay to carry around in the back.

The tools from the rebuild that have lived in the back of it for months have been taking out and put away properly for the first time in forever the boot now seems very bare.

Still feeling rough I have decided to wait until tomorrow to take a proper test drive out along with the fact that seeing as I worry like a woman as you all know the RAC membership I have bought doesn’t kick in the recovery side until tomorrow afternoon I shall err upon the side of caution to start with.

Next steps will be the rear interior the winterised lining is coming off and will need to be replaced but that will be over time along with having to wait for warmer weather to paint the inside.

But guess what folks? I am only going out driving in it on the road for real tomorrow and I cannot wait šŸ™‚ Now where did my Lemsip go???

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