So much information, so little blog posts (Post #188) 7/19/2010

I am progressing at a leisurely pace on the Range Rover Restoration Part Duex. I have run out of funds for now and have changed gears a bit. I am now working on stuff that doesn’t require any supplies. Its also kinda hard to be motivated to “bust it out” when the temperature is 100+F in the garage. As RovErica said to me the other day when she came home after a long drive around town in her unairconditioned Ford Taurus, “I’m sweating balls out there.” As she said that, I remembered the good old days when I didn’t have air conditioning. Ahhh memories. Nothing motivates a kid more than suffering.

I have started to organize the pictures so the tasks can be broken down in to manageable pieces. This hopefully will prevent me from having novel sized posts about rust removal. I know WTH! I know how you all love to read about grinding rust but I’m sorry you will have to get your War and Peace sized fix of minutia of rust removal from some Jaguar or Jeep website. 

With some new tools, I have decided I could proceed with the rust portion of the project and pull the carpets in the front of the Rover and see what kind of damage is up there. I was NOT surprised to find rust. I was surprised to find holes. The good news is it was only two holes. The bad news is they are not in easy places to work. I also believe before long another seam will begin producing holes.

This is a picture underneath the passenger side seat. You can see the hole in the floor and the rust along the seam there. There is a bit of rust a little further back that is even worse than this. Therefore the entire passenger side seat and electrics will need to be removed to get to the problem spots. If I don’t, its only a matter of time before my passenger is ejected through the floor board. I only allow people I ACTUALLY LIKE to ride with me in the Range Rover so I should really try to fix this correctly. While I’m at it, I think moving the engine management computer to place higher up would be prudent. We’ll see how that all pans out when I get closer to reassembly.

I pulled the carpets and mats and to my surprise they were still wet two weeks after the last rain. We have had 90 plus degree heat for over a month and except for a drive during the flash flooding on July 4th she has just sat in the driveway. We did have quite a bit of rain during the early part of the month so I have to assume this rain is coming from somewhere above the rust. My first guess is the windshield seal. So add to the list of things to do, pulling the windshield and replacing the seam. More expense and more time. This will have to be professionally done for I have no way to pull the windshield. The guys across the pond on the TV show Wheeler Dealer hire this out and I will take their lead and do the same. If it’s good enough for Edd China, its good enough for me.

So with wet carpet and very, very wet sound pads coming out, are we at all surprised there is rust on the floor boards? Rhetorical question! Lets get a look at it.

In these pictures there is a pre and a post picture. The PRE pictures are before any grinding was done. There were some pads glued to the floor and they were very rusted underneath. The goal was to get to bare metal and remove the rust. I will probably hit all this one more time before the acid etching primer goes down and the entire area is covered in new sound deadening material.

Driver’s side

Passenger’s side

I mentioned two holes. It was somewhat comforting to find the stainless steel screw that holds the seat facia firmly embedded in the rusty metal. Here are the pre and post pics for each hole.

I think perhaps it looks worse than it really is. I stopped by JagGuy’s shop on Saturday to show him the pictures of all this rust. He said, “That ain’t rust.” He proceeded to show me a Jaguar with rust so bad entire sections of the body were gone. The surface rust I had was not even to be concerned about in his eyes. He says a liberal application of Rustoleum paint will slow down the rust. Even better would be some Waxoyl or the like. I’m still investigating which one I will go with.

So overall I felt pretty good about that. But he had not seen the footwell pictures yet. He had only seen the pictures from the rear of the Range Rover. And those my friends, will be in the next blog post.

Stay warm and Happy Rovering.

When bad things happen to good mechanics (Post #179) 6/2/2010

Remember the last time you saw something on your Land Rover that made you say to yourself, “I really should fix that.”?
Do you remember the reason you used to convince yourself that it would be alright as long as this thing or that thing didn’t happen?

Well let me tell you, sometimes the consequences of those actions have us sitting in our Land Rover on the side of the road wondering if your one friend that owns a trailer and truck big enough to haul your dead Rover to your house/shop/shade tree. Sometimes the consequences of those actions are having your step-son calling you during a historic Spring hail storm that crippled an entire city for several hours and caused tens of millions of dollars of damage to houses, cars, churches, etc.with tennis ball sized hail for several minutes.

Yep, true story.
Who’s Land Rover: My good friend JagGuy’s Step-Son’s Range Rover Classic.
What was the part: Drive Shaft.
The Reason: That won’t blow as long as I don’t drive it hard.
When did it happen: During the epic Spring 2010 Hail Storm of Oklahoma City.

Who would have imagined a drive shaft failing would permanently disable your Land Rover? I for one do, now. JagGuy had noticed the drive shaft issue during an inspection some time ago. He gave the Classic to his Step-Son. And as good a kid as he is, he doesn’t know anything about the magic metal box with tires that gets him from point A to point B.

So when the drive shaft popped and knocked a hole in the side of the transmission limiting his speed to 25 mph no matter how hard he pressed on the accelerator the Classic was doomed. When JagGuy got there he saw the transmissions life blood running down the street on top the 4 inches of hail covering the street. The initial diagnosis was a busted transaxle. But that was short lived when he climbed under the Range Rover at the shop.

Sadly he found the transmission case cracked. The transmission is not going to be a cheap fix. As of this post I do not know what was decided if the disabled Range Rover was to be a parts car or repaired.

Lets hope he can get the money together to fix it. I know he loved driving it. So let this be a message to all you fellows thinking that problem can wait.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

Holy Crap! What a week. (Post #136) 4/7/2009

Let’s start with the good part. I took my son-in-law to his first living history event. We attended the Fort Washita Rendezvous. He has been interested in his Pottawatomie heritage lately and wanted to “do it old school”. So I dressed him as best as my kit would allow and we went to the event and had a great time. We are dressed as Natives in the Fur Trade Period from the 1820-1830s time period in what is today Oklahoma. I am dress as a Cherokee and he as a Pottawatomie.

Some nice panoramic photos of the fort can be found HERE.

I’ve posted some pictures. One has me tomahawking a man in the “mock battle” we had for the spectators on Saturday afternoon. It was great fun.

On the way home we “took the long way” due to a train parked across the tracks in Madill. There was no sign of it moving so we headed north towards Tishimingo. Along the way we pulled off the road several times to gawk at the old farm houses mostly abandoned. We didn’t think to take pictures. We did stop on the side to take a picture of a weird sculpture outside a welding shop.

Sunday night was full of fun. RovErica called from her cellular on the way home from dropping off DietMtDrew’s friend to report the Range Rover was very hard to keep on the road and was shaking “like last time”. The last time was the loose lug nuts incident. I had rebuilt the left rear brake caliper and failed to tighten up the lug nuts completely.

Well this time I was sure it was the steering box. RovErica reported a steering problem a month or so ago. I had been reading on the forums about steering boxes and thought that was it for sure. I tighten the steering box up and the problem seemed to go away.

So I took the Rangie out for a test drive to confirm my suspicion. It indeed wobbled all over the road. I had only drove a couple of blocks and it was really bad. How she managed to keep it on the road was amazing.

I called my buddy JagGuy and asked him about steering box replacement. He had done some work recently on his and I wanted to find out what I had gotten myself into.

I crawled underneath to investigate and found. The nut holding the pitman arm to the steering shaft was nearly completely off. My youngest two kids and my niece were in that Rover. If that nut had come off it could have been really bad.

I was thinking the slotted washer that is designed to keep the nut from spinning had failed. Well that washer is NOT slotted or keyed. I was shocked. What’s the point of bending the washer to hold the nut from spinning if the washer is not held in place by some manner?

So I cleaned off the arm and the shaft and the nut and the washer. I wire brushed as much of the old lock-tite from the threads.

OH I didn’t mention that? Yeah I had blue thread locker on it from the steering seal replacement from 3 years ago.

I got the nut tightened down and added some more thread locker. I then bent the washer again. I’m not sure why but I did. A quick test drive to the Norman North crosstown clash with Norman High in soccer, North took both games, proved that it would be safe to drive again. This week I am going to be attempting to get as many of the bushings from the bushing kit on her in JagGuy’s shop. He has a lift and that should help greatly getting the bushings replaced.

But Monday was not done. At lunch RovErica managed to hit a Dodge Ram Pickup on Gray street and totally destroy the front of the Discovery. AWESOME! So just to keep the score straight. RovErica 4, Discovery 0. Yeah in some manner or other she has wrecked the Discovery 4 times. She was hit from behind. Bumper checked a car during the ice storm, backed the Discovery into the Taurus which took out the B piler on the Taurus. And finally she smacked the pickup truck. She has also been rubbed by a kid in the parking lot of North while she was impatiently waiting to leave the parking lot.

Awesome start to a week don’t ya think?

(I’ll post pics of the Discovery’s front tomorrow.)

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

He swears he’s not over compensating (Post #128) 2/15/2009

My best friend JagGuy recently bought a new toy. It’s an M35A2. 2.5 ton truck. As you can see in the picture to the left. He said he had been looking for one ever since he saw a picture of one a fellow had modified.

He said, “I just thought it was cool.” Secretly we all know he is just trying to compensate for a “lack” of something. He swears he isn’t with the email he sent me with the picture. He wrote,

I’m not compensating for anything! (copied 17 times and ended with)

But what guy doesn’t like a BIG truck!

He owns a 1991 Range Rover Classic, a dozen other Jaguars and assorted whatevers, a Mercedes 300 CD and is building two motorcycles.

He plans to set the 50cc and under world record for motorcycles. The other is a ridiculously crazy project involving a Jaguar V12 motor. To say JagGuy has issues would only scratch the surface.

So his latest foray into off-roading is this 6×6 monster he plans to modify into a 4×4 by dropping an axle. The result will I’m sure be fun for kids of all ages.

I drove M35s when I was serving in the United States Marines. We also drove the big brother to the M35, the M54 which was just a beefier version called “the 5 ton”. He has promised that I can take a metaphorical stroll (I will actually be driving) down memory lane and drive the M35, I fully intend to hold him to that.

The question is now does he plan to make it a “daily driver” as he is like to do with his new acquisitions? Or will this just be another toy in the ever in creasing toy box of excentricity? The jury is still out and with the number of projects he now has planned, I’m pretty sure I could petition him for a job being his “Edd China” for at least three years. Edd and JagGuy could quite possibly be brothers, more on that as I finish my interviews with JagGuy’s dad about his early exploits.

Swivel Housing Grease (Post #113) 11/12/2008

My daughter was reporting noises coming from the Range Rover Classic. Most of the noises are from the exhaust system including a new vibrating noise that I’m hoping is coming from the
ceramic parts inside the catalytic converters. I’m going to get some expert advice from JagGuy this weekend for diagnosis.

In any event I got some more lube into the swivel housings. If you’ve been reading you know the grease that came out of the front differential was very soupy indicating a mixing of the swivel housing grease with the 80w140 in the differential.

You can read about it in the Techtips on the website.

I took a picture of the window regulator. Or more accurately what is left of the regulator. I’m going to measure the last remaining wheel and try to find a replacement on the web.

I also heard of a great way to preserve your rear lift gate. My buddy JagGuy employed a method they use to protect E type Jaguars and their unpainted parts from rusting. He said it worked great on his new upper lift gate on his 1991 Classic. More on that when I do mine.

October 15th, 2005 (Post #63)

October 15th, 2005
Heater core replacement
This weekend I am tackling the horrible and dread project of fixing the heater core. As you may remember it popped when I was heading into work back in April when the cooling system was failing with the head gasket problem.

I hear it is a 4 hour off and 4 hour back on job to pull the dash out. JagGuy is hoping for lots of pictures so he can pull his to fix the expansion valve on his A/C. He will probably want some help when he does his for sure. I owe him big time I hope he asks for it.

While I’m in there I’m going to check all the electric connections. The problem with the discharge could still be there with a problem associated to the fuse box. Strange thing happened when I was testing problems when I plugged the dome light fuse back in. I got a nice spark and the light started working where it wasn’t just minutes before.

As the story goes the cab was filled with nasty antifreeze steam and the under dash was definately wet. So I will be cleaning that up while I’m in there.

Thanks to all the guys that gave me tips about their project. Especially you guys from the LRO Forum.

I’ll have a write up on it as soon as it is done. Look for it on the Tech Tips page.