My involvement with Land Rovers and driving off road all started 3 years ago when my mate Phil called me with an offer.
He knew I had been looking for a landy for years and he had the perfect one. LWB series 3 with a 3L engine under the bonnet. It sounded too good to be true so off I went to Hawkshead to take a look. True to his work it was a monster. But some work was needed. The chassis needed a couple of patches and an exhaust was going to be required. This appeared to be all that I needed to do so I agreed to buy the vehicle and a friend offered the use of his dads field to sort the basics.
This was the start of a year of weekend work. Only when we got it in the garage did I realize the extent of the rot in the chassis, the break system would require complete replacement and the electrics resembled a kids crayon drawings. To be honest I should have cut my losses and called in the scrap man, but I like a challenge and I refuse to be beaten.
A year later after getting all my friends with any enthusiasm, skill or courage involved, Beast finally went for and passed his MOT. Pictures of Beast at this time are on his page
This however was not the end of the story. Having got it on the road, I now wanted to take it off the road. I had the tyres, I had the engine, now running rather well thanks to Steve's magic. (I still don't know what he does but it works) all I needed was allot of petrol and a map.
I was working as a lifeguard at the time on a local beach so Beast would come to work each day and be used to patrols and towing duties down on the sand. But this wasn't very adventurous so I decided to try an little wading. They say you live and learn. Well I learned that day as I plunged beast into a gully on the beach and saw water come up over the bonnet. We made it most of the way through but It stalled due it would seem to the amount of water being thrown about by the fan. A can of WD40 later we were off again. Only to repeat the incident on the way back.
This was the start of a long line of off roading ventures which were to involve fixing modifying, bodging and a generally learning from our mistakes, in order to turn beast into a reliable off roading toy. I find that despite all your best efforts there will always be something you didn't see going wrong.
Along the way I included the addition of a few optional extras, such as diff guards, steering guard and a winch to get me out of trouble. but like any other toy, if you fit it you a have to try it. and I did.
Having taken Beast all over the country green laning, I started to look at doing some more adventurous driving. Although by now beast had been modified about as much as possible he was just too big and lacked the maneuverability to go trialing. So I started to look around for a short wheel base project. Knowing series Landys well I looked for a newish series 3 that I could buy and with as little work as possible get ready to do some trials.
I bought Junior from a friend in Liverpool. He had owned him for a while and on a rigorous first inspection he seemed sound and handled well. So money was exchanged and Junior was delivered. 6 months later after allot of work Junior was MOTed and ready to drive. If you want to read the full story its on Juniors page.
So now I am waiting for permission from the doctors to drive and then Junior and I will be spending the summer having some new adventures.