FC Blog 2

12th Sep 2013 17:07

Got a few odd jobs done this afternoon. At long last the first part of the exhaust pipe is finished and attached. There is very little room to the left of the 200 Tdi and the direction that the Discovery exhaust goes (backwards and downwards) is effectively filled up with the series 3 clutch slave and the chassis cross member. The only option seems to be backwards and upwards into a vertical sky exhaust. The pipe needs to be turned slightly to the right to clear as much of the upper subframe as possible, but the first 2 inches needs to go straight back to clear the studs and nuts that hold the flange. Anyway, its done now.

The new clutch master cylinder is now in and the overhauled pedal assembly loosely in place. The cylinder is a series 3 item, but as it is moving a series 3 clutch by a series 3 slave, that would seem to be ok.

The Defender 90 fuel tank turned up yesterday. The original idea was to put it alongside the chassis on the right, but it would be a tight fit between the cab and the spring hanger and I need some room there for the brake servo. I’m toying with the idea of putting the tank between the chassis frames as far back as I can. It would be out of the way there and I need as much weight aft as possible.

The cab rear is hanging from the gantry pretty much where it will be; it needs to be there for a while as I decide where the various systems go.


18th September

I’ve had a few days off in Cornwall, but back to work today. At long last the correct speedo cable arrived and that got fitted at the gearbox end. This may seem a trivial thing, but experience has taught me that fitting a speedo cable with the overdrive in place is impossible. That means that the overdrive is also now in and the control connected as far as the side of the gearbox. Also the gearbox, transfer box and overdrive have now been filled with oil and closed up.

The placing of the fuel tank has been giving me a lot of time in the thinking chair, the result of which is I have decided to fit it between the chassis rails over the rear axle. The tank I am using is a Defender 90 tank and I intended to fit it to the right side of the chassis; it would have been a bit of a tight fit and the weight is much better placed further aft. Just designing a couple of brackets to hold it.


23rd Sept Monday

Did a lot of thinking over the weekend and decided that if I positioned the upper chassis cross members with some thought, I could hang the tank from them. I haven’t got around to actually cutting them yet as I only get one chance and I’ve got a cold; to high a chance of mistakes.

Since it seems important to get the systems in before I start adding other bits I’ve finally got around to putting the radiator supports in. Whilst there is clearly not enough room for the Discovery radiator and intercooler to be mounted side by side, there is enough room for the radiator with its oil cooler. Just. I’ve cut the framing that goes around the outside of the rad to the new size and with a bit of jiggling it now fits. I’ll get it welded up tomorrow. The new radiator is on order as the removed one is shedding most of its finning and is in a poor way.

Radiator in and the Cleaned Up Discovery Header Tank Fitted

Radiator in and the Cleaned Up Discovery Header Tank Fitted

7th October

Radiator is in and the oil cooler all connected up with some very expensive pipes. It will all have to come out again in the next few weeks while I fit the intercooler in the space between engine and radiator (air coming from below. The siting of the air cleaner is going to be a bit of a problem as well as there is now very little space for pipes to run from the area of the turbo.

The two mid cross members in the rear upper chassis are now in place with the fuel tank between them.

15th October

The rather strange damage to the steering shaft. Overloading?

The rather strange damage to the steering shaft. Overloading?

The steering box seemed to deserve attention, although there seemed to be no play the wheel was quite stiff to turn and oil didn’t seem to improve matters. On strip down the problem was seen to be both the bearing tracks were shot, as was the worm and the nut that the balls run in. The replacement inner shaft was no longer obtainable, so I ordered a series 3 item plus all the bearings and bits and pieces.

The series 3 inner shaft is about two inches shorter that the FC one, but otherwise seems similar, so I intend to cut and sleeve it; a job for which I am treating myself to a new boring tool. On suggestion from someone on the forum I will, in addition to welding the ends of the sleeve, drill a couple of holes and plug weld them. The series 3 gearing seems to be about one turn less lock to lock, but with power steering that should not be a problem and may even be better.

IMG_6611In the meantime I have been doing a lot standing in front of the vehicle thinking about how the intercooler is going to fit. Finding a place for the IC itself is no problem, but finding a place where the pipes can be easily connected is a bit more of a problem. Finding a place for the air cleaner that doesn’t involve long pipes is also an interesting problem.

As part of the planning I have put the rear cab and seat box in as a temporary fitting. Because I tilted the engine a few degrees to get the turbo in I will need to raise the passenger’s seat by about an inch; sheet metal work for the coming months.

Fuel system in except for the dribble line and clutch pipe to the flexible also in. A nice little job for Sunday making up the rest of the pipes.

17th Oct 2013

The steering box was fitted today. I still have all the plates inside the bulkhead to find and fit and I will leave the steering wheel off as it always gets in the way while you are working.



9th November 2013

The chin panel from in front and below showing the air scoop

The chin panel from in front and below showing the air scoop

I haven’t got a lot done for the past couple of weeks, the cold miserable weather has kept me away, but also a lot of the time has been trying to work out where to put the intercooler. I finally decided and it has gone behind and below the radiator on the chin panel with an air scoop underneath to help with the flow. I’ve still got to work out the plumbing, but I’m well on the way.

I have some thinking to do about the airflow through the intercooler. Clearly when moving forwards at reasonable speed there will be plenty of ram air through and with the engine at idle there is no need for any airflow.

It is the low speed/high power situation that I need to think about, say pulling away up a hill with a trailer. One thought would be a simple switch in the throttle linkage that turns on an electric fan as you open the throttle and another switch that senses forward airspeed (a little plate that gets blown back might work) that turns it off again. As I say, some thought needed.

The intercooler seen from above and the left side of the vehicle

The intercooler seen from above and the left side of the vehicle


I have also fitted the brake servo. The original position was in front of the offside front wheel, hardly the best place for it to be. The old one had to be chipped out of a large lump of dried mud before it could be removed. I have fitted the new one on the offside chassis member behind the cab which will protect it and make it accessible.

The brake servo fitted to its newly made bracket on the right side of the chassis. The bucket is under the hole in the roof and doing a good job.

The brake servo fitted to its newly made bracket on the right side of the chassis.
The bucket is under the hole in the roof and doing a good job.

Just in view is the rear propshaft now fitted. Being a shortened chassis it was difficult to say where the propshaft had come from, but as the splines were shot it had to be a new one. Fortunately a stock forward propshaft fitted well. Unfortunately a stock forward one didn’t fit in front of the gearbox. It is all a bit odd there with the front axle pinion flange having a two inch spacer between it and the shaft. I am rebuilding the old shaft.

12th Nov 13

The whole propshaft thing just got worse and worse. It turned out that the removed front shaft that I rebuilt never really fitted after all. When actually offered up without the all concealing rubber boot over the splines it was actually an inch and a half too short and had been running with only about three quarters of an inch of the splines actually engaged. As this didn’t seem too safe I drove up to Craddock’s and we laid the prop shaft out on the counter and compared it to various new ones until we found one the correct length. It is now fitted to the vehicle.

While I was at Craddock’s I bought a pair of (very expensive) gas shock absorbers for the front. The back will have ordinary Land Rover shocks.

20th November 13

Winter is approaching, in fact it briefly snowed this morning and it’s very cold in the barn. However, over the last week I have managed to get the front springs changed for the nice new three leaf parabolics and just waiting for the U bolt nuts to arrive and that will be finished. Almost all the brake pipes are now fitted and the brake pedal tower is overhauled and waiting to go on.

Most of the pipework for the turbo and the radiator is now complete and fitted. There was a bit of a problem with the power steerage pipe and the turbo input pipe wanting to be in the same place, but I think that is resolved now. Pics will follow.

15th Dec 13

I have just realised how long it is since I last wrote anything here. Here is a list of what’s been done.

Brakes. All pipes in and system bled. Unfortunately there still seems to be a lot of pedal movement, but I haven’t had any vacuum to the servo yet which may be part of the problem. The brakes work well enough to stop.

Steering. It turned out that the relay was shot, so that has been replaced. All steering adjusted and nuts tightened up, the only play seems to be that needed to move the PAS valve. Pipe is in pump to ram and the other two (ram to reservoir and reservoir to pump) should ne in the next day or so.

Suspension. U-Bolts all tightened up and front shock absorbers fitted

Throttle connection. I was going to fit the pedal arrangement from a Defender, but it appears that scrap Defenders with mechanical fuel control are suddenly like hen’s teeth and new pedals are expensive. I came up with a little piece of invention that turns a series throttle pedal into a Defender like device (details). Two Discovery throttle cables joined together seem to be able to cope with the distance.

Clutch. Now fully functional. Bleeding was a pain. Eventually decided to fit a bleed pipe from the slave cylinder to a bleed valve mounted on the back of the engine and very easy to get at. In 5 minutes the system was working fine.

22nd Dec

Finished the throttle linkage today. Originally I was going to continue the rodded linkage back towards the engine and finish off with a cable to the pump, but as there is now no chance of putting the hand throttle in again (the rad expansion tank is there), I went for the defender type cable from the pedal. I tried to find a second hand defender pedal, but there seems to be a shortage of them, so I mod-ed the series pedal. Details if the mod here

That seemed OK and what I needed was a second throttle cable to use by a join in the middle. Unfortunately the one I ordered proved to be a short one. After a bit of research and help from Dingo Croft I found that the LHD Defender cable was just what I needed. The bulkhead needed a bit of reinforcing where the outer fits, so I made up a suitable aluminium plate. Job now done.

The mod to the pedal

The mod to the pedal


The pedal installed

The pedal installed


The other side of the bulkhead with the reinforcing plate

The other side of the bulkhead with the reinforcing plate

I should be able to start the engine in a week or two and after that I can get started on the bodywork and wiring.

30th Dec 2013

I think it is true to say that the seat box on the 2b was not the best bit of the design. It started as a normal seat box and bit were cut out as required. There were a few bits of reinforcing put in, but at the end of the day it still has a big hole in the middle over the engine. On my vehicle someone in the past had made the hole a bit bigger to fit a Perkins engine (mostly, it seems, carried out with a “gas axe”).

The 200 Tdi is a bit smaller than the previous engines, but the highest bit (especially after I had tilted it a few degrees to starboard for the turbo to clear the chassis) is the inlet manifold which is also far enough to the left to no longer be under the centre engine cover. It does miss the seat box, but only by about a quarter of an inch, which I don’t think is enough as the engine will move more than this on its bearers.

It would seem to be necessary to raise the level by about an inch. Unfortunately I am fairly tall, so I really don’t want to make the driver’s seat any higher, or I won’t see out of the windscreen. For this reason I only intend to raise the left side of the seat box. At the moment the plan is to make an aluminium frame out of aluminium (suitably relieved in the back right corner where the manifold is). This, in turn will lead to a number of changes to the engine cover which sits on it. I will need a few hours in the “thinking chair” to sort this out!

23 Jan 2014

The bridging piece with the new seatbelt anchorages

The bridging piece with the new seatbelt anchorages

I am not sure what the inboard seat belt anchors were attached to, but it all looked pretty flimsy; maybe a bit was missing. It seems reasonable to make a bridging piece to hold the lower part of the rear cab together, so I made up a bridging piece of steel with new seatbelt anchorages on it.

The bridging piece from behind

The bridging piece from behind

The new seat box and rear cover seen from the right side

The new seat box and rear cover seen from the right side

The original bonnet (and therefore the hole it covers) was not only quite big and heavy, but also unnecessarily complicated. The wider, rear part, presumably was the size it was to give some room over the carburettor and distributor, which in our case we have not got. I made a new rear cover out of 2mm aluminium which is attached with 6mm bolts and Rivnuts.

The seat base was remade with the left side 25mm higher. The new bonnet is next. As both the dipstick and filler cap is easily accessible from behind the cab, there is very little reason to make the bonnet particularly easy to remove, so it will be held in place with a few bolts.

8th Feb 2014

I have been a bit lax in reporting progress, but most of it has been finishing off the tinware inside and then taking it all apart to work on the rear lower cab piece. There was a considerable amount of corrosion on the rear lower members that have required quite a bit of replacement. Actually replacement is probably not quite the correct term as the old rotten bit is still there inside with extra bits riveted on outside that now take the load and show a better aspect to the World.

The whole piece is now on the bench having been cleaned down and Special Metals Primer painted on one side; the other side tomorrow on the assumption that the power cut that stopped work this afternoon has been repaired.

I have also acquired an eight inch electric radiator fan to pull air through the intercooler when there is not enough forward motion. It might just have a simple on/off switch, but I am toying with the idea of a microswitch in the accelerator circuit that will turn it off when the accelerator is at the idle setting and another microswitch that will switch it off when there is enough natural airflow for cooling. We shall see.

14th February 14

The seat box is now off the vehicle and being painted. The cab rear has been taken off as well and is being repaired where necessary and painted before being re-fitted. It is at the lower back corners of this piece where the most of the aluminium corrosion is and it has needed a fair bit of re-construction. Cleaning it down was much more difficult than I expected to be, the Perkins engine had produced large quantities of oily sludge from the (leaking) exhaust which had firmly attached itself to the rear cab wall. The only way I could get it off was with a wire brush and that soon clogged up!

Also the lower seat box is on the bench getting the same treatment.