rangerovers.pub
The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse.
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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 90

This is my first Land Rover. Through over 45 years of restoring/wrenching/restoring old German and Italian car I have finally got my steam up to own a P38- my favorite Range Rover. I had been able to resist the P38 call all these years because I had enough pain with the cars I was passionate about- but many friends experiences and a good number of Land Rover reviews--- warned me off. But then I saw my first Holland and Holland. Yes- a P38 with just a lot more makeup- but it tipped me toward owning. But years of resistance helped me pass on the two H&H's which came up for sale this year. After passing on the last one I could not stop kicking myself- so I googled H&H and another one like magic popped up. And like with many of my past machines- I paid the same for an H&H which needs all kind of attention--- as I could have paid for a really nice one. I bought it from a gentleman who had it for less than a month and owns a number of Land Rovers. I know-big clue. But the story was he had one car too many and wife says she wants a new car before he owns another project. Good story. My assumption is that he bought it from photos, got it, discovered that it was much worse conditioned then led to believe--and passed it on to me with vague assurances that it was in great shape. I am often the "last Tag" guy. But-while I get a bit pissed each time this happens- I figure it is a project and I like projects.

I just cannot let this orphan H&H be parted out or screwed up anymore then it already is- so I am taking it on and hoping for the best.

I have gotten into it- the O ring leak was obvious--passenger side so wet that the wire tray alongside the side of the passenger's seat (LHD) was filled with coolant. So I did the O ring job the last two days-- and even though someone had gotten into this before judging from all of the access holes cut all over the place - it was still hard without cutting/removing the ducting. Had to try every combination of swivels and 1/4" drives I had in my toolbox to install the screw into the hole. Removing was easy-just could not line up the screw to the hole. I will remember not to remove it next time.

When I got it off the flatbed and started it up I noticed a lot of condensation. I was a cold 35F so condensation is not abnormal at startup- especially from cars which have not been started for a few weeks. Took it for a 10-mile jaunt before I put it in the garage-- and the condensation cleared off in a mile according to my friend who followed me. But it returned while idling. Headgaskets? Hoses are not rock hard when running, the plugs do not look steam cleaned, temp stayed at 12-- so I am thinking 50/50 if I need head gaskets.

And--- I have pulled out all of the wood trim to refinish. This special wood (thinking Claro Walnut Burl from the looks) is so sun cracked it is just short of having to be pulled off and new veneer applied. Called an expert who would finish -but just like any other P38 since they are not sure what the wood used. Maybe never seen an H&H before. Anyway--they are talking $3500 if re-veneer. Not gonna happen. So I am sanding away and taking a crack at it.

OK - spoke enough-- but you get the idea-- orphan restoration. We will see if gets the best of me.

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Joined: Feb 24 2017
Posts: 104

Welcome....
P38s can be a lot of work, but with a half decent toolbox, a pot for boiling water, teabags, a Nanocom and the patience of a saint you will be just grand.
I have three P38s, one of which is a fully restored H&H. I redid all the wood trim. DO NOT REMOVE THE WOOD VENEER! It’s a very simple task to refinish what’s on it. You just need to be patient. The trim is made of French Walnut veneer and my advice is for you to use a very fine sandpaper to remove the varnish, which I assume is cracked. The veneer is not very thick so once you start seeing wood filings then stop sanding. JUST TAKE OFF THE VARNISH AND DON’T BE TEMPTED TO OVERDO IT! As you sand it you can wipe the veneer with a damp cloth and check your varnish removal progress as it will show up in a sheen over the veneer. When the varnish was removed I used a walnut stain from Home Depot and applied two coats with a fine sponge, allowing each coat to dry an hour. Once done wipe it with turpentine or a clear cleaner. I applied clear flat Matt poly with a fine sponge on mine. I would not recommend a high gloss, because other than it looking gash, it was originally designed to be flat like gun barrels.
The H&H is my favorite P38 special edition. Keep an eye out for the extras that Range Rover supplied with the H&H, as they will add value to your machine...
Good luck with it.

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Joined: Mar 22 2016
Posts: 1084

Hi mark, welcome to sanity, JMC is your man, look at what he owns.. he most probably know more about H&H than any of us.
Your find this site more relaxed than rrnet..
if your hoses aren’t pressurised and your not losing coolant, I’d say your head gaskets are ok, depending on how long the cars been sitting, 10 miles would barely warm the exhaust system up, in the cold weather here mine pours steam out the back, on petrol or lpg, I know 100% my gaskets are fine.

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Joined: Feb 24 2017
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I agree with Chris re the steam from the exhausts.... mine looks like the Flying Scotsman on a run to Edinburgh for the first hour after engine start .......

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 90

Thank you JMC and Chris for the kind words and encouragement.

Good to hear about the amount of condensation that comes out of these RR's. Mine was dripping on the floor. My friend said that a mile down the road the condensation stopped-- but it did get heavy again just idling before I pulled it into the garage. Perhaps I do not have to install new head gaskets immediately- more an outdoor summer job when there is plenty of natural light and I have many hours of it.

Got the carpet up on the right side---with a fan-still soaked since coolant is slow to evaporate.

Well, the sanding went fairly well, I was pretty careful using only 320. Hard to tell the varnish dust from wood but I only went through on a few sharp edges. I feel a bit bad about that--perhaps one day I will regret not turning this over to the "experts"- but for me, this H&H will be a driver-- not my main since my trusty Astro Van pulls that duty--but not a garage queen either. I hope to stop its downhill spiral which it was on- and to bring it up to a state that there will be another caretaker who will wish to own it after I have to let her go. I hope to have her for a good long while.

Not sure at what point she became a "her"

Interesting that you applied a walnut stain. I do not think I will need to add stain because when I wipe the wood down with denatured alcohol -the brown and figuring come right up. I was going to use up some Ephiphane marine UV poly I have from refinishing some cherry walls I have in the house which are exposed to the sun.

I agree that the matt/satin finish is what I am aiming to replicate. Ephiphane says that on bare wood to use a 50/50 mix of their high gloss (sort of like a wiping mix) to close the pours. Then reduce the thinner on the second and third coat. Finally, the last layer you use either their matt mix or what they call their "hand rubbed" mix. I am thinking of just using the gloss 50/50 mix for a number of coats to see how the finish comes up. I have used their matt and "hand rubbed" and could not tell much difference. Both give a nice slight sheen.satin. I expect that it will work great. Hopefully, it will turn out fine since I feel this will be the last light sanding this veneer can withstand. May have started out about 25 thou thick-- but even my light sanding may have been at the limit. I will find out since I bought a sheet of figured walnut veneer to fix a few spots and may have to spend some work thinning the new veneer down.

I do have one H&H piece to practice on. I had to buy a rear ashtray since --like much of the plastic bits on this H&H- one of the hinges were broken off. I found a guy who had parted out an H&H and still has some trim pieces- so I got lucky and he had the rear ashtray lid with both hinges intact. I am going to experiment on the broken rear ashtray wood to settle on matt or hand-rubbed effect.

I am sure JMC that you will understand my next purchase---you know the guy who parted out the H&H- I decided to buy what interior pieces he had left-- for stupid stupid stupid money. I am the fish he was waiting for. All because my driver's door wood trim had warped so badly that it popped out the H&H silver emblem. I did not notice this until I bought the ashtray lid. Now, where would I find one of these H&H emblems-- easy-- I just had to buy all four of the door panels. He also has all four seats -----with the fold-down trays. No- currently those are not in my budget-- but one day--when I recover-- I am going to try buy them just to get seats with the trays already factory installed.

Like I said- almost every plastic bit is broken on this H&H-- mainly from whatever independent mechanic, the 2nd and 3rd owners used. The Carfax shows the last dealer touching this H&H was at 70K miles and it now has 105K miles. Also, this H&H experienced kids -- I removed the plastic seat aprons by the floor- which are split- and found all kinds of nasty bits along with small kid toys and corroded loose change.

JMC--one question--is the light saddle color plastic bits used in the H&H a special color- or were they also used on many P38's. My passenger seats plastic apron is cracked along with the cover in the right side of the passenger's footwell. If a stock color-- what is the color called so I can google it in my search for these parts?

Also-- I have not found a definitive set of part diagrams and part numbers. I have zeroed in on Reno parts, and the Russian website which provides a good amount of diagrams and part numbers- but not all. I could not find numbers for the seat aprons and other such bits-- and none have a separate break out covering special edition part numbers like the H&H. I know that LL had to have supplemental part numbers- but where can I find them?

Thank you again--Now I also need a either a Nano or and Evolution--- any pros/cons- or does it just come down to price between the two. I am afraid to lock my doors until I buy one of these.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 1387

Welcome to the pub! It sounds like you're really going to have some fun with the HnH but I'll be jealous when it's done. I think they're fantastic.

As for diagnostics, it's Nanocom Evolution all the way. There was the beginning of a group buy on here somewhere but I'm not sure if it ran out of steam but I see you've posted on the thread below this for a second hand one. I've certainly had my money's worth out of mine!

Photos Please :D

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Joined: Jan 16 2017
Posts: 465

MarkTr wrote:

Also-- I have not found a definitive set of part diagrams and part numbers. I have zeroed in on Reno parts, and the Russian website which provides a good amount of diagrams and part numbers- but not all. I could not find numbers for the seat aprons and other such bits-- and none have a separate break out covering special edition part numbers like the H&H. I know that LL had to have supplemental part numbers- but where can I find them?

Thank you again--Now I also need a either a Nano or and Evolution--- any pros/cons- or does it just come down to price between the two. I am afraid to lock my doors until I buy one of these.

Nano and evolution is the same piece of kit - its a Nanocom evolution thats the current model (they did make . Have a look at the website for the manufacturer to get a bit more info on what it can do, There are other options from elsewhere, but everyone here whos tried them ends up getting a Nano instead.
https://www.nanocom-diagnostics.com/
They did do an earlier model just called the Nanocom, but thats no longer made (still supported, but only option there is to find a second hand one)

Microcat might have more info on the part numbers if you can get hold of it (used to be widely available on ebay for a few pounds, but not anymore) as you can specify by VIN on that rather than looking at the parts lists available elsewhere.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 90

Brian-

Sorry---I was comparing the NANO SMV-2 versus Nanocam Evolution. My assumption was that the term NANO always referred to the small version of the SMV-2 which requires a PC to operate. The Nanocam Evolution was the small stand-alone unit-- which I called the "Evolution" in my post.

It was these two which seemed to have the same functions for a P38 but with the SMV-2 you could (if pressed) pay big money for a software package that will unlock the BECM. Aside from that, both units seem to do the same thing- except for the full page view you can get with the NANO SMV-2 on a laptop.

I did not know if the SMV-2 was worth the extra money if I do not think I will want to buy the unlock package.

Looks like Microcat is now subscription based.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
Posts: 1035

The 'NANO MSV-2' you mention is part of the Faultmate range of diagnostics units. I think the confusion is coming from the fact that some people refer to their Nanocom Evolution as a 'Nano'

I have the Faultmate MSV-2 Nano unit with the BECM CPU access module and it was rather expensive JUST for that one module. But then I do a bit of BECM work, so it's worth me having.

My thoughts - get a Nanocom... It's more practical for the home DIY user, you don't need a separate laptop/PC to run it (my Faultmate lives in the garage hooked up to a desktop PC for BECM only diagnostics) and a Nanocom fits in the cubby box/glove box, so you can have it with you at all times in the vehicle and not have to have a computer with you aswell!

That's my thoughts on it.... Welcome to the P38 fold, and look forward to hearing how the restoration goes!

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
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MarkTr wrote:

Got the carpet up on the right side---with a fan-still soaked since coolant is slow to evaporate.

I had a waterlogged carpet from rain water getting in through the vents. It didn't want to dry out even in summer.

I ended up piling lots of newspaper under the carpet and going at the top with a wet-vac. Even then it took a very long time to feel like it was making a difference and I never managed to get it fully dry. I just got it as dry as I could and had to leave it to dry out over time.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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Marty-

I think you have tipped me toward the evolution. I always buy as many factory tools I can for jobs I know I will take on for each car/truck I own/restore/wrench on. I have a shelf load of them-- but I offer the appropriate ones to the next caretaker but most do not wrench and just want to buy a car from me because they know it will be right-- at least until it is not. I am often surprised how long the new owner goes without worry-even when I told them I was watching something on the car like a T/O bearing noise. Something I would replace in the next month or so just because stuff like that drives me crazy.

So it was just my craziness that I was debating the Pro box versus the home mechanic box. If you think the evolution will do what I need- then saving the money is a plus. I may get lucky and find a used one- but aside from the one just advertised here-- i have never seen a used P38 specific one on ebay so far.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
Posts: 90

Rutland-

That is thickest chopped rubber flooring I have seen in a car. I have seen it only under carpet in homes where it is a pain to scrape off any hardwood floor you may have if it has been installed for very long.

I will try the paper approach-- I have been putting towels under it and pressing down trying to squeeze water out of the chopped rubber. I think it is doing OK- but being that it is coolant it may take the many months you mention. If it was warm outside I would just put it outside and open the doors with the battery disconnected.

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Joined: Jan 16 2017
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MarkTr wrote:

Marty-

I think you have tipped me toward the evolution. I always buy as many factory tools I can for jobs I know I will take on for each car/truck I own/restore/wrench on. I have a shelf load of them-- but I offer the appropriate ones to the next caretaker but most do not wrench and just want to buy a car from me because they know it will be right-- at least until it is not. I am often surprised how long the new owner goes without worry-even when I told them I was watching something on the car like a T/O bearing noise. Something I would replace in the next month or so just because stuff like that drives me crazy.

So it was just my craziness that I was debating the Pro box versus the home mechanic box. If you think the evolution will do what I need- then saving the money is a plus. I may get lucky and find a used one- but aside from the one just advertised here-- i have never seen a used P38 specific one on ebay so far.

The thing is with the Nanocom Evolution you can keep it in the glovebox for use if the eka is required (door lock/fob issues can cause a right headache here as many posts will tell you) or any other odd things while your out and about if you get stuck.

It might help to give it a go over with a wet vac and some carpet shampoo to try and get rid of the coolant as far as possible as far as the carpet is concerned, but as you say it really needs the warmer weather to make much difference.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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Brian- so evolution it is.

I just read the procedure to register the evolution online---and also perhaps to turn on the software. Wow- almost as complicated as the alarm system on these P38's

I am going to wait and see if Billy has already promised his Evolution (?) to the first member who contacted him-- and if so- I should not wait up buying a new one.

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Joined: Feb 24 2017
Posts: 104

MarkTR, if I were you, and this may seem like a bridge too far but I say it because it appears you are about to do an extensive restoration on an extremely rare P38 and this suggestion will be worth the effort, I would remove the carpet completely and the foam soundproofing then allow the floors to dry properly. I removed the carpeting from my H&H and the LINLEY and also the soundproofing and was glad I did. The “gutters” that run along the floor at each side of the vehicle Had more dampness and water residue than I was comfortable with especially considering that Landrover thought it a good idea to run wiring inside these same said “gutters”.
Removing the seats is not a huge deal or is the removal of the center console. The side trims on the interior will need to be removed as well and you can decide whether or not you want to go “full Monty” and remove the dashboard in order to get to the carpeting under the dash or just slice it to get the carpet removed. For sure you will need to slice the carpet in places. On the LINLEY I removed the entire interior so the carpet was not cut. I’m glad I didn’t cut the carpet in the LINLEY because it was a woolen carpet specially made for this vehicle. I didn’t remove the dash for the H&H to remove the carpet but you could not notice where it was spliced because where you will need to cut it will be hidden by trim.
When I had the carpet and foam soundproofing out I realized that the insulation smelt like a wet pair of socks and I disposed of it. I left the interior air out, had to replace some of the wiring plugs that showed signs of oxygenation and then painted the entire floor with rustproofing. I took the opportunity to wash the carpet and then I covered the entire floor with DYNAMAT EXTREME soundproofing followed by the carpet.
It’s not a huge project and one you can take on yourself easily with patience. I would recommend you get a Workshop manual for the P38.
Regarding your question about the color of trim parts, yes they are unique to the H&H and yes they are impossible to find......

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Joined: Jan 16 2017
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MarkTr wrote:

Brian- so evolution it is.

I just read the procedure to register the evolution online---and also perhaps to turn on the software. Wow- almost as complicated as the alarm system on these P38's

I am going to wait and see if Billy has already promised his Evolution (?) to the first member who contacted him-- and if so- I should not wait up buying a new one.

If you could manage to find and register on here, then you will be able to sort the nanocom registration, its not hard at all, just a case of following steps and putting the unlock codes in the right place. If you don't have a laptop to use with the Nanocom in the car powered from there, either print the instructions out and follow them or get the power supply with it and do it with the instructions on the computer.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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JMC-

You are very right about the cables soaking in coolant. While I have a fan and a dehumidifier going- your suggestion about pulling out all of the carpets is making sense for many reasons. Knowing myself though- if I pull the carpet- I will then pull the dash- and then I am off to the races and may have her buried in the garage for months.

For this reason-going full Monty even on the carpet will take some mulling over. I have gone full monty on many cars so I know the work and passion required.

There are some vehicles I know from the start I am going full Monty and there are others which I want to enjoy as a driver-- so I bring it up to driving standard - arresting the downward spiral of deterioration - but not making it so nice I do not wish to drive it and park it -- at least in safe locations.

Remember this is my first Range Rover so I am not going into it with a major passion like many on this forum have. I know this is a special vehicle- so I am starting with that. What I am finding is that the more I work on her- the more I am becoming deeply attached to her. But I wish to pace myself. Have read many threads on RR forums where many owners/caretakers start out excited and eventually the P38 issues finally wear them down so they sell out and move on. They love the P38- but are tired. I remember in the early '80s when I was into Bevel Ducati's-- the same dichotomy among owners-- you had to assume that even with constant vigilance you may be caught with a dead bike in the middle of nowhere. Thus the passionate core of true believers.

I feel I need road time with my H&H- see what fails - see if she wants to work with me and not against me. I keep the machines I love for many many years- at 68 I feel I can play the long game with her restoration while enjoy driving her.

Yes-- and the carpet may still come out---

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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Hi Brian-- I am sure you are correct about getting the evolution registered and up and running. Just seemed upon a casual read-through to be a bit more complicated than required.

I had only scanned through the instructions because I had not made up my mind yet about which box to buy. My impression was that I had to register using a PC laptop in the car--- but also near WiFi in order to communicate with the vendor. Not sure how I got that impression but if true then I am not sure how I will be able to do that-- my WIFI does not transmit out to my garage- or even out to my driveway.

I use only Mac's- but I do have an old IBM T42 with XP on it which I have used to run a number of scan programs for other vehicles I have owned. So this may do the job-- but very slow if some downloading is required.

Need to go back online and read the instructions- Thanks Brian-

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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I can understand how some get disillusioned with a P38 but if you are doing the work yourself and are methodical then you shouldn't get into that state. I bought mine with 204,000 miles on the clock, a burst rear air spring and a head gasket blowing from one cylinder into the Vee. Got those two things sorted in a couple of days and started using it before finding all the other things that fail on a P38. No different to any car of this age, everything has the stock faults that will always show themselves. For the first year or so, I didn't trust it as far as I could throw it but by working my way through the problems it became reliable. That was 8 years ago. It now has 367,000 miles on the clock, everything, and I do mean everything, works as it should and it is regularly used to drive across Europe, visiting my partners family is 1520 miles each way, and it just does it. Like anything, do it right, do it once.

Registering the Nanocom Evolution isn't that difficult, you just need to follow the instructions and enter the code which is generated for you. If you can't get the computer outside, simply write the code down and take it outside with you.

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Joined: Dec 14 2018
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Gilbert- well my intention was to get her back on the road and once I felt no major item was about to break on me- that I would go back to airbags since all of the bits are still in place. I was going to buy bags and then rebuild each part of the system to make sure everything works before I install the bags. Have not figured out the jury-rigged bypass wiring which is a mess of single wires ending in fuses- but when I get to that I will ask the forum what they think is going one with the mess. Too much debate about springs/bags for me to understand the fine points unless I drive one myself. The spring on it right now are pretty floaty-- my 2005 Astro Van is way more precise in turns and way better damped. Could be the current dampers are not well matched to springs that are installed.

Printing out the codes and instructions seem like the path I will need to go. Wonder what the instruction are if you buy a used one- such as the one Billy may sell?