The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse
702 posts

I have made arrangements to pick the car up on Thursday, so will grill the garage then. At the moment I don't have all the details about it.

mad-as: I wish to keep the car in as good condition as I can and I have been ticking jobs off during the lockdown. I have just done the headlining for example. Anyway long story but I aquired a brand new transfer box on Ebay about 10 years ago. The seller was from Bridgend in South Wales where a BorgWarner factory shut down. I didn't ask questions. It has been on the floor under my workbench since then. It was for a manual box but I aquired a set of epicyclic gears for an auto box and changed them over. Reason for changing? Because I had it and the old box although it works OK has done 165k miles. I figured the chain and viscous coupling must be on their last legs. I thought a quick job to swap them over.

I am not convinced that there is anything wrong with it but I will investigate.

I am reluctant to let that particular garage touch it again, even though the foreman is adamant they spent 11 hours on it.

2 hours to swap the box the first time round, 1 hour to change the engine mounts, 2 hours to swap the old box back. 5 hours so far.
Missing 6 hours pissing about.

The garage finally came back to me (Landranger Services, Middlewich). Car had gone to the back of the queue because of a backlog of jobs.
They tried the suggestions, but they couldn't solve the problem and have put the old transfer box back in.
Recons there is a problem with the new box. He says the spindle was free and moved OK. Old box is fine.
Including changing the engine mounts, 11 hours labour @ £68 an hour.
£878 all in and I am back to square one. Nothing to show for it. F**king disaster.

If you have got money to burn, I would take it to a specialist leather restorer, that just does vehicles that is.
I found a place locally and took a Volvo in with deep scratches on the drivers seat for repair and it came up like new. The previous owner must have had a bunch of keys dangling from his belt. Cost me £150 though. Not sure what a full car would cost.
The guy restoring the leather had an MGA and a Merc drophead in the garage and had done a fantastic job on them.
They have all sorts of dyes and fillers to use and coatings to redo the surface finish.

It just has electric up and down and tilt. Forward and back is manual.
I have had the seat in bits repairing the heaters and doing some stitching. I didn't see a lumbar pump.
I am the only one that drives it so don't need memory seats. Also forward and back stays in the same postion all the time.

A couple of comments:
I don't agree with the wording behind the petition "to help young motoring enthusiasts afford classic cars".
However, I have a personal interest. I am running two cars and my wife one car. I sorned the p38 last year partly due to cost and partly due to the lockdown and it not being used. What about you guys with 3 or 4 p38's? Do you road tax them all?
You can only drive one car at a time, so where is the logic in road taxing every car?
MOT is a different thing, so should have a separate date or at least separate rules. Anything post war 50's/60's/70's/80's should be tested I think and those are the cars more likely to get you killed.
I can find my way round a p38 but as Richard says it is always good to have an MOT tester look at it with a fresh pair of eyes in case something is missed. It has happened to me several times over the years. Just last year with my front suspension bushes.
Also you can't have someone turn up in a Foden steam wagon for an MOT, so pre war cars should be dealt with differently. What about someone turning up with a 1928 Bentley Speed Six? Worth £2 million. Would you leave it with them to test? I think not.
Is there an environment advantage to running older cars for longer. A bit like Cuba maybe? Older cars are less efficient and have poor emissions vs the cost and energy producing a new car.

I have got a poverty spec DSE. It has electric leather seats but the basic ones.
What is involved in changing them to the all singing/all dancing version with electric lumbar adjustment?
Anyone done it?


It should be. Anything built before 1 Jan 1981.

Classic vehicle rules

There is a UK parliament petition just started to reduce the road tax exemption from 40 years to 30 years.
I have just signed it and I urge all UK forum members to do the same.
When it gets to 10,000, the government must respond.

Although it won't affect us just yet, it is a move in the right direction I feel. A 1995 model p38 will be 26 years old now.

Road Tax Petition

I am in a similar position. I got Ashcrofts to fit a new gearbox to mine a few years back and a filter change is now overdue. Although I do change the fluid regularly. Transmission fluid degrades if the gearbox is ever overheated; towing etc.

I remember speaking to Dave Ashcroft at the time and he said, if the filter has never been changed in the past, when it is finally changed, it causes the sludge to be stirred up and it often then causes problems with sticking valves. His view was it was more trouble than it was worth and just leave the filter and only change the fluid. Surprising comment, but that was what the main man said.

Sludge will build up as the clutch plates wear.

I think the best option is to change the fluid and filter regularly so the sludge never builds up. Every 2 years? I don't think a filter change is in the official L/R maintenance schedule from memory.

Pierre3, I think I would get better at the headling with more practice. It was a pretty stressful experience glueing it down. Three of us in the back garden on an old garden table all shouting at each other. My son and grandson were holding the fabric taut and I was doing the glueing and smoothing. The recess where the sunroof normally goes was the hardest part and left a few small creases. Before I started I read everything I could about how to do it and looked at a few youtube videos. One american guy who did roof linings for a living made it look so easy. Just a few sprays and a quick smooth with his hand. I think that gave me a false sense of confidence, that was until I started the job and my confidence suddenly evapourated and I realised it was not as easy as it looked.
I started at the front with the headling and I think with hindsight it would have been better to have started from the rear and leave the recess to near the end. The Martrim glue also does not slide. It sticks instantly. I wonder if there is another one on the market that does slide which would be better for amateurs?
It was also really essential to wrap the fabric around the backing and glue it to the back. I asked about that on here if you remember.
The grab rails were a pain getting them to screw back in position. I literally spent an hour on each one. I used longer ss bolts with a flanged head. The other things like the centre console and alarm sensor just clipped in and were easy.
The headling looks OK now all the fittings are back. No one else has commented on the couple of small creases. It is just that I know they are there.

Thanks Richard. That sounds plausible. I have relayed your comments to the workshop foreman who is supervising the job.
Hope it is as simple as that.

A quick call for ideas please.
The Landy garage has just called. They have fitted the new transfer box and they have reported being unable to select high/low range and a horrible grinding noise from the transfer box when run.
The transfer box is about 10 years old and completely unused. I had the case apart to change the epicyclic gears from manual to auto. Nothing was else was disturbed and it went back together easily enough. It turned over by hand when reassembled. Can't think what could cause this. Ideas please gents?
The garage is going to have another look at it they said. Hope they put fluid in it.

Hi Pierre3,
My car is still in a local Landy garage getting the transfer box changed, otherwise I would go out and check the battery for you to make sure.

The -ve earth cable will be OK, there is a lot of slack; it is just the +ve terminal. As Richard says on the Hankook, the terminals are closer to the centre line of the battery.


I may be looking for a battery myself. My Lucas battery is coming up to 3 years old and a bit iffy. It has fully discharged a few times which has damaged it I think. Sorning the car for 5 months didn't help.
I see the Hankook MF31 is £95 now. I don't remember them being that expensive.
Has the £ gone down vs South Korean currency (what ever that is) ?

I have fitted a pull cord for the lower tailgate as a precaution, just in case the lock fails or the battery is flat and I can't get into the back.
Just a simple nylon cord that comes out of the carpet at one side through a brass carpet ring. About 3 or 4" protrudes.
It is quick to install and the cord doesn't get in the way.

All the inside trim is back after replacing the headlining. Got a few small creases despite my best efforts. Oh well, at least it no longer sags and rests on the top of my head.

Dropped the p38 off at the garage (L/R specialist) to get a new transfer box fitted. I provided the fluid and the rear gearbox oil seal, so there should be nothing for them to charge for, except labour. What do you recon? 2 hrs labour max? Have to wait and see.

I have got a bog standard 2000 DSE and I think the wiring looms are the same across the range, petrol, diesel, highline or lowline.

I have got spare unconnected plugs behind the dash and even fog light plugs, that can't be fitted to the diesel because the auto gearbox cooler is in the way.

The engine looms are obviously different, petrol/diesel, but they are just an extension that plugs in.

Replaced the intank pump and fitted new tank seal/gasket.
I was not sure what seal to order as there are two types WGQ500020 and NTC5859P and my Microcat PC is down.
Not sure why there are two, early and late? or diesel and petrol?
Ended up ordering both. They are both the same diam but WGQ500020 is a shallower ribbed design and fits better, imho.
It was awkward trying to fit the new pump. Best method is to press the gasket into the tank first, then press the pump down (against spring pressure) through the gasket. Check it is seating correctly all round then finally screw the retaining ring onto the thread.
Tighten using the special tool. Did all that and refitted the fuel pipes. Checked fuel flowing to the FIP banjo and refitted it.
Got someone to crank the engine and cracked a union at the injectors. Started immediately. Phew.

I was half expecting his funeral hearse to have a pool of oil underneath.

The problem is the huge price differential between Landrover and aftermarket parts.
Imagine trying to run a p38 and you could only parts from LandRover. I would probably scrap mine .
Britpart are OK for basic things like brake disks, calipers, dampers maybe. They don't actually make stuff as far as I know but they have quality problems with what they buy. I get the impression that a lot of their stuff is made in India. Not so good on quality. China is far better.