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The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse.
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Joined: Jun 20 2017
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Just saw this from Modern Classic magazine.

'A RANGE ROVER P38 IS A MORE SATISFYING CHOICE THAN A LATE CLASSIC'
March 28, 2018
Want to get into a Range Rover? Keith Adams reckons there's only one to punt at right now

Words: Keith Adams
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April 2018 Issue
April 2018 Issue

It’s good to see that the late Classic Range Rover is being hailed as a clever money car in this issue, and that its aesthetics are now being hailed by more experts. I’ve always been a fan of late Rangies – not so long ago I drove a 1971 and 1991 back to back and couldn’t see a reason why you’d pay 10 times as much for the earlier car.

But equally, these late cars have been on the rise for some time now. The idea of finding a hidden gem for a few hundred quid is pretty remote. Shame, but there you go. Classics are classics. Not so with the P38. Here’s a car that only a handful of people have really cottoned on to, so good ones can still be found cheap, which makes them very appealing. And you know what? I think a P38 is a much more satisfying choice than a late Classic.

‘Ah, but it’s a P38!’ I hear you cry. ‘The ugly Metrocab-aping second-generation Rangie with a fondness for the hard shoulder, and a known ability to empty even well-stocked bank accounts.’ Well, I’d suggest you need to get with the times. For a start, the P38 has aged really well – find an unmodified one in a neutral colour, on the right wheels, and in good order, and it still looks fresh. Alongside the P38, an L322 looks like an over-styled, fussy thing that’s trying a little too hard.

Inside, the P38 has held up pretty well, too. The instruments are a model of clarity, the swooping centre console still looks terrific, and most are trimmed in an appealingly light shade of leather and contrasting wood. It has Rover 800 switches, but so what – they work pretty well.

Compared to a late Classic, the P38 drives well, too. Get one with working air suspension, and the tighter steering, improved ride and excellent handling will seem like a revelation. It’s like wrestling a greased Sumo in comparison with a smaller, modern car, but for a Rangie, the P38 feels pretty good. Imperious, commanding, unrushed – just how it should be.

So if you’re persuaded by my arguments, what advice can I give? Definitely plump for a petrol V8. Yes, the 2.5-litre diesel straight-six is easier to find, comes from BMW, and therefore should be reliable. But it’s not torquey enough for the job in hand – and although more economical than the V8, it’s not enough of a saving to justify the compromises. Just make sure the V8's liners are in good order and it’s not using oil or coolant as a consequence.

Stick a nice stainless-steel exhaust system on to a Rover V8 and you’ll enjoy a deep-chested, cultivated soundtrack that’s so in keeping with a well-appointed Rangie. Under-body corrosion is something to take into consideration, but nowhere near as much as with the Discovery or Classic. So just look for accident damage, around the rear arches, and never, ever buy one that’s been wading.
Things to look for? Ah, there are many pitfalls, but the best way of tackling the job of P38 purchasing is to make sure the air suspension works (putting them on coils really spoils them, in my opinion), that all the electrical toys are in fine fettle, it has all the remote keys and they work, and that it doesn’t have immobiliser problems. Oh, and don’t underestimate the cost and awkwardness of putting a shoddy interior back into prime condition.

Stick by these pointers, and don’t be tempted by cheap sub-£1000 projects, and you’ll enjoy a go-anywhere, classless, satisfying modern classic that’ll just get better with age. And I know it’s a cliché, but I’m off to look at the classified ads now…

Read the full featured the Range Rover Classic in the April 2018 issue of Modern Classics. Click here to buy a copy now.

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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Having owned a Classic before the P38, I couldn't agree more.

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Joined: Mar 22 2016
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I remember the feeling of being in a boat when driving my old classic, many a time I had my neighbour hanging on to the bar on the dash for grim life, think I aged him a few times , lmao.
Would I go back to a classic, noooooooooo !
Nice to see someone that isn’t slagging p38s off for a change.

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Joined: Jun 07 2017
Posts: 306

Yes - been very pleased with my P38 - never felt very brave about defending it when some find fault with it - they were 'experts' so to speak - did all the air suspension myself with washer kit and EAS prog from USA - followed the instructions on PaulP38A.com - used good condition air springs from breakers to save money - but ! what about the P38 parts that are now listed as unavailable on the websites - What happens in the long term..... ? Some of the Classics are fetching big prices I notice. Perhaps I should chase the rats out of mine ! What would my old Willys Jeep that cost me £85 in 1962 be worth now ?
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Joined: Jan 16 2017
Posts: 478

Depends how critical the parts your looking at are - My mate with his series III can still get most bits he requires, though some drop in and out of availability. Some bits can be worked around (bolts and non critical fixings), others are due to part numbers being changed.

It helps that the engine isn't the Land Rover one in his, although getting parts for the mid 90's Iveco diesel its got seems to involve going back to one of the main dealers as the local parts counters can't do much without a reg number!

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Joined: Jun 07 2017
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Could not get a ERR 4278 TPS for my unmodified GEMS 4.0 anywhere on the web and finally found an old one in a breakers. I think some spares are going to be a problem if you are looking for long term P38 running.
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Joined: Jun 16 2018
Posts: 67

Owners of most older cars struggle to find the odd bits and bobs - difference being with them is that there is usually a work around owing to their inherent simplicity. The likes of the P38 and newer cars will struggle as the electronic parts fail and become harder to find and far less likely to make do with something else. If values do start to increase, it may encourage re-manufacture of certain items as it becomes economically viable?

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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Maybe BMW will shame Rover into creating a heritage dept like their "Mobile Tradition" arm. Old parts get remanufactured once there's enough demand and if you're rich enough you can send your old BMW back to the factory for a full restoration!

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
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Land Rover already have a "Classic" department that manufactures certain classic parts, restores/rebuilds classic models to sell and will also do restorations for existing owners.

You have to rather wealthy to afford any of it though :P

https://www.landrover.co.uk/explore-land-rover/land-rover-classic/genuine-parts.html

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Joined: Dec 30 2015
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Well, if I had known that I could have just dropped the Duchess off at JLR and saved Marty all that trouble!! :)

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Joined: Jan 16 2017
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Morat wrote:

Well, if I had known that I could have just dropped the Duchess off at JLR and saved Marty all that trouble!! :)

To be fair, They offer accurate recreations of the originals, That might not be a good thing in all cases, though probably less of a problem with the p38 than some of their other creations. Having seen some of the original engineering (xyz switch being one example, there are others) you'd want an improvement rather than a new example of the original design.

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Joined: Jul 12 2016
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BrianH wrote:

Morat wrote:

Well, if I had known that I could have just dropped the Duchess off at JLR and saved Marty all that trouble!! :)

To be fair, They offer accurate recreations of the originals, That might not be a good thing in all cases, though probably less of a problem with the p38 than some of their other creations. Having seen some of the original engineering (xyz switch being one example, there are others) you'd want an improvement rather than a new example of the original design.

The website also says they have some of the same hands doing the engine rebuilds as original built them. Those could be some mighty old and doddery hands!

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Joined: Sep 02 2016
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I would expect that GEMS 4.0 TPS is/was also used on several different models, eg Rover400, MGF etc....(?)
There may be a difference with the spindle design/shape though, but, after all, it's just a simple potentiometer !

Lots of electrical parts for different car models are interchangeable, it's just that if you put in in an OEM RR box
it magically doubles in price.....

Should we ask those 'classic' chaps how much they would charge us for a BECM (for a larf ?)

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Joined: Jun 07 2017
Posts: 306

Yes you are right - the same TPS is used in either or both Defender and Discovery I think but I ordered and put on the wrong one (different looking spindle hole) on the left below .....
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and it instantly reset the idle to abt 2000 rpm. When I put the original TPS back on it stayed high idle. I solved this problem with help of Gilbert by elongating the holes and changing the angle. Now, I have a diagnostic kit from RSW in USA and was able to reset adaptives and put the TPS back to the correct position - what a stupid game ! I see that there are sites on ebay with the wrong picture for ERR4278 (the correct part which you can see on my post earlier today with the distinctive 2 triangles spindle) and I made that mistake too - they should be shot !!! The ERR 4278 is shown on some websites but are £100 plus which is an awful lot for a simple potentiometer especially if one is not sure if the original is the cause of the fault ! Sorry - a bit off subject but worrying if P38 is to become 'classic' that is not just in a museum !

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Joined: Dec 29 2015
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It's just a throttle pot, with an output that goes from 0 to 5V (-ish). It would not be hard to devise a replacement.

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Joined: Nov 16 2016
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I've made throttle pots for carb engines I've converted to LPG. A short bit of rubber pipe between the spindle and pot can act as a CV joint and prevent lateral loads on the pot. Pots that turn through only 90 degrees (like the spindle does) aren't that common, you couldn't just use the original 5v supply (for a TPS) to a pot that has a different range of movement and get the same extent of voltage range out of it that the original TPS would give. But you can use a different supply voltage or load a pot's output using pullup/down resistors to give same range of voltage and same response curve as an original TPS. May be a problem replacing fly by wire throttle bodies on current cars when they become classic but at least this won't be a problem for P38s.

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Joined: Sep 02 2016
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Indeed, such 'bodging' often also becomes necessary as cars age and become classics...... involving a Dremel and some Epoxy usually too....

Off on a tangent but what is best about P38s is that they are fairly basic (!!) and "bodgeable" (particularly with RRPUB member assistance) and
that's why they are classics now ...

PS: Forgot to remind/mention that Pots. are anti- OR clockwise of course

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Joined: Jun 07 2017
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Agree that it should be possible to 'adapt' something suitable but what surprised me most was the fact that when I put on the wrong one (with the half circle hole) it set up the idle to about 2k rpm and the ECU must have set up an adaptive that held that when I replaced the original - not solved for many months until I was able to reset adaptives with RSW's EAS v4 software which works pretty well and good value at about £140. In the RR manual it says 'Reset idle speed necessary if you change TPS' which EAS does not have in the menu - only 'reset adaptives' which seems to do the right thing. I'm not an agent for Storey Wilson but his kit and P38 instructions are very good - he is a genuine enthusiast who started like us trying to fix his own P38. and writing the software for the ECU's - I expect you all know him but in case not - enter link description here
http://www.rswsolutions.com/

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The reason why the idle revs went up is that the ECU stores a value, around 0.5-0.8V for the TPS at closed throttle. As you open the throtlle this value increases so the ECU causes the idle air valve to open to raise the revs so it acts like a progression jet in a carb and gives more controlled performance at very small throttle openings. By fitting a different TPS this would have raised the voltage to above what was stored so the ECU thought the throttle was open very slightly and raised the revs accordingly. It should adapt over a period but I've found that if the stored value was higher than the actual value it will adjust up but doesn't seem to adjust down if it's the other way round. Resetting the adaptives will set the stored value to the actual value but also resets other variables to base settings such as fuel trims, MAF air flow rate, fuel flow rate, etc which adjust to account for manufacturing tolerances and drift in component parts.

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Joined: Sep 02 2016
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Yes, the GEMS is a little unforgiving - if it gets the "wrong" input/s it won't necessarily re-adjust to the correct ones - although it is supposed to do via the appropriate Drive Cycle process (but which can take quite a while/fuel !). In fact the ECU also gets RPM-type data from other sensors too of course, MAF etc, so it should respond/correct more rapidly....

If unaware I found this insight useful (even though it's Morgan) too: http://www.gomog.com/allmorgan/GEMS/GEMSbyPoole.pdf

Agree that Storey is a star, living proof that inspiration/perspiration can defeat LR's 'planned obsolescence' plan !