The Great Project

- Introduction -


In the summer of 1997 I decided it was time to get a car - as I live and work in London a second hand Land Rover seemed the obvious choice! So around mid- June I got a cpy of LRW and had a look through the classified, spotted a Series 3 Lightweight for sale in South London, took a look at it, got a bank loan and bought it - easy.

Q581 NYB was a pretty standard ex-Army Series 3 Lightweight . Built in 1979 and fitted with a 2.25L petrol engine and 12V electrics. Nice extra's that came with included a Superwinch X6 and a Jack-All high lift jack - which has proved somewhat more usefull than the winch (another story). The paint job was the obligatory hand brushed British Army matt green and black camoflage - the neighbours were probably "concerned" - camo trousers are de-rigeur in N16, camo vehicles aren't.

A good summer was had cruising around with the roof off with various friends and many mountain bikes squeezed in - the bikes normally at least doubling the value of the vehicle.

By September the "two and a quarters'" appetite for four star, along with it's relaxed output caused my thoughts to wonder in the direction of Automotive Component Remanufacturings Stage 2 Powerplus kit - more ponies and the ability to drink unleaded was too much temptation for me (not to mention getting rid of the Weber 34ICH carb.). So six hundred odd quid later the high compression gas flowed head, SU HF6 carb., thin-wall inlet manifold and Peco exhaust silencer found their way onto NYB. The end result sounded pretty good, went rather well and cost less to run (even if it'll be a while to make up the 600 in fuel savings).

October saw the dreaded MOT appear on the horizon. Luckily (amazingly) everything was in order and a pass was obtained. The tester even commented on the very low CO content of the exhaust gas - obviously down to a decent carb. and the Automotive head.

Everything just ticked over smoothly for a year, with just the odd bit of maintainence now and then. Needless to say, an iceberg was fast approaching in the shape of the chassis rear crossmember which was showing signs of not existing. Mr MOT man would not be a happy bunny and a pass would not be forthcoming.

After a bit of thought, I decided to take the DoT up on their offer of a SORN, which came with my MOT reminder, and garage NYB for the winter. I planned to do some fixing the next spring when the days got warmer and lighter.

Well, spring has arrived, and as planned I rolled NYB into the drive and got out my tool kit, and here the fun starts.......... Week 1.