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  #1  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 08:25 AM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
Expeditions West: Discovery I, 5-speed Project

Well, you guys have heard me talk about manual discos and P38s, and I finally found what I wanted.

Expeditions West started with a Discovery (II), and has now come full circle. For a few years, I have wanted a clean, white, manual/cloth SD Discovery I to build for Land Rover events and trips in the Southwest. Over the last few months, things came together to support the build, including the need for a new project to feature in the Journal and a recent contract with the US special forces that required another truck.

It is a 1995 SD Discovery with the R380 5-speed, cloth interior and only 70k miles. It was owned by a minister in Salt Lake and only serviced at the dealer (I have all records). I bought it from the salesman who sold the unit new 10 years ago...

It drives great and made the 600 mile trip back home like a new car. The interior is within 10% of a new vehicle IMO, and the exterior is in fantastic shape given the vintage.

The entire build will be featured in Overland Journal, and will be clean and moderate, complimenting the Rover and addressing basic expedition and trail requirements.

Essentially, the build will come over three parts:
1. Suspension, tires and wheels. Electronics and power
2. Camp systems and storage
3. Armor and recovery. Traction and trail considerations





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  #2  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 10:55 AM
sheki sheki is offline
David Shechter
KC2PFB
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: NYC
Posts: 571
I think it looks pretty good just the way it is.

a ham radio and you're all set.
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  #3  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 11:30 AM
traveltoad traveltoad is offline
Aaron Shrier
KI6BCA
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: San Fernando Valley
Posts: 2,628
Awesome!!!!
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  #4  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 12:31 PM
nosivad_bor nosivad_bor is offline
Rob Davison
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 1,051
That's too nice to monkey with.
____________________
-Rob
1999 Discovery 1

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  #5  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 12:39 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
Quote:
Originally Posted by nosivad_bor
That's too nice to monkey with.

Just minor monkeying, I promise... Purely functional
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  #6  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 03:21 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
The distributor is in need of replacement, as it appears a prior service damaged the nylon centering disc, so it wobbles slightly and I cannot get it to proper advance.

Does anyone have experience with the Mallory units? Impressions?

I would not mind going that route if it is an improvement. In addition, I am am assuming that the ECU must receive the spark reading from the coil then, as the Mallory is a simple three-wire unit.
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  #7  
Old October 22nd, 2007, 07:48 PM
hochung hochung is offline
Ho Chung
W6HC
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Posts: 2,006
Quote:
Originally Posted by expeditionswest
... Purely functional


that's the scary part.
____________________
Ho Chung

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  #8  
Old November 17th, 2008, 10:53 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
There have been a few changes as of late, all focused on the things not easily seen by others, but immediately noticed by the driver.







I am quite content with the exterior modifications (as shown in the images above), so all of my attention has been on strengthening the drivetrain and enhancing the suspension performance (handling, load capacity, balance, damping).

The next level is to open the axles up and fit a new set of gears, ARB locking differentials, stronger axle shafts, new prop shafts and all new brakes.

I have started to address navigation and communications as well, but fortunately in a reversible way. The Magellan Cross-Over is a small, simple GPS unit that has integrated Topo and street navigation capabilities.


I am also deciding on an amateur radio. The Icom IC-2820H is of interest, with the removable faceplate mounted in the center console (or possibly to the headliner panel, below the dome light).


I will probably end up with an IC-706MKIIG too, but that will be mounted in the EarthRoamer.
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  #9  
Old November 18th, 2008, 12:16 PM
johnlee johnlee is offline
John Lee
K6YJ
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Torrance, CA
Posts: 16,150
Quote:
Originally Posted by expeditionswest

EEEEEEEEEEEEEEK!

You're replacing parts that don't break with parts that break.

Those welded radius arms are just asking for trouble. Study the factory radius arms and you'll see that they're made from a single-piece forging. In contrast, the factory trailing arms are made from components welded together. There's a reason Land Rover used a forging for the radius arms. The radius arms are under tremendous force under braking. I've seen a few broken welded radius arms but I've never seen a broken factory radius arm. And there are very few aftermarket radius arms in use and hundreds and hundreds of factory radius arms in use.

Those poly bushings also break. They split catastrophically and you're left with the bolt rattling around inside the hole that the bushing previously occupied. Even worse, the poly bushings break without warning. You can inspect them and they look fine. Then they split without warning. And when they split they are done.

In contrast, the factory rubber bushings don't fail catastrophically. They wear over time and in a predictable manner. When you have a bushing that is going bad, you can tell and you can replace it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by expeditionswest

I'm not sure I understand the reason for this heim for the A-arm. I've never seen a factory A-arm joint break the way heim joints do. Remember, that heim is not sealed against the elements and it's not lubricated. That's not a good combination. It'll start to wear and you'll get that annoying click sound every time you go over a bump. And it may grenade.

Quote:
Originally Posted by expeditionswest

That garage door opener. Dump it. It's ghetto in your Disco. Sure, you have to open the garage. But hide that remote. Take apart the remote and find where the wires from the momentary switch are. Then wire in a factory momentary switch on the binnacle or dash or center console. Hide the remote behind the flap that opens beneath the steering wheel. It's some cool shit to open the garage door with a factory switch.

If that's too much trouble, then put the garage door remote inside the center console. It looks like ass mounted on the visor like that.

Rookie.
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  #10  
Old November 18th, 2008, 01:51 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
I don't care about the garage remote - I am not that vain. However, I might get the homelink, which is a simple plug-in and solves the problem of needing two remotes (garage and gate).

The front control arms resolved several handling issues that most (through ignorance of suspension dynamics or preference to have a half-dozen unwired lights) leave unattended. Principally caster. These arms also adjust the wheelbase back to factory and also reduce the included angle of the arm, improving directional stability and reducing articulation induced creep steer. I have not found a suitable caster correction solution for the stock arms, so they had to go.

There is no question of the strength of the stock cast arms, but they are far too much of a handling compromise to leave alone. I am not the least bit concerned about the integrity of these new arms or the bushings they utilize. In general, I have not been a fan of polyurethane, mostly due to the inevitable squeak they product (and often actually limit articulation). I use a new silicon grease that has proven to last with minimal maintenance. These arms with the poly bushing do not limit articulation, and will droop past the extension capacity of the OME shock.

The heim pinion angle adjuster is a fully sealed unit with a polished finish and banded wiper seal. The primary function of the heim assembly is to align the pinion and t-case joint angles (prop shaft) to eliminate vibration. I have driven race trucks with smaller heims than that on the suspension, and am not concerned with durability. The pinion angle adjuster entirely eliminated vibration.

The important result for me is that the Disco rides and drives better than stock, both in low-speed technical terrain and at high-speed in the desert. The combination of OME springs, OME shocks, HD steering components, arms and pinion angle adjuster all corrected for and/or improved the handling performance of my Disco.
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  #11  
Old November 18th, 2008, 02:40 PM
johnlee johnlee is offline
John Lee
K6YJ
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Torrance, CA
Posts: 16,150
If you want caster correction, Old Man Emu makes caster-correcting bushings with eccentric centers. Normally, these aren't an option for me because I don't want poly bushings. But if you're going to go with poly bushings anyway, then I think swapping bushings makes more sense than swapping arms.

Another option for caster correction is to solve the problem at the swivel balls rather than the arms. Many people with caster-corrected radius arms have experienced increased driveline vibrations because their front pinions are pointing more downward than before. This lower pinion angle combined with the lift usually associated with such vehicles often results in driveline vibes. The front driveshaft is short and it's out of phase from the factory. Most people have had better luck with driveline vibes by leaving the factory radius arms and correcting caster at the swivel balls.

I think an easier solution than either of the above-mentioned solutions is to install a TruTrac front diff. The TT makes the vehicle self-center better than when it was stock. And I get more traction up front and a stronger front diff to boot. To me, this is easier than swallowing a bird to catch the spider, which you swallowed to catch the fly, which you shouldn't have swallowed in the first place.

The rear pinion angle is adjustable without changing the ball joint. Just change the length of the trailing arms. That's what I did. I just installed longer bushing bolts and used washers as shims until I found the length that I wanted. When I ordered a set of trailing arms from Rock Ware, I just told Matt what length I wanted. Now I have the pinion angle I wanted and the factory ball joint is still intact. I figured I was going to order new trailing arms anyway (the factory trailing arms are actually parts that fail and should be replaced), so why not specify a length for my replacement trailing arms.

I think you're confusing drop and flex for the front arms. I don't doubt that the poly-bushed radius arms can drop past the extended length of the OME shocks. However, these arms with poly bushings will not flex the way the factory radius arms with rubber bushings will. The design of the radius arms wants to twist the front axle at full flex. The radius arms are joined to the front axle at fixed points. With one arm pointing up and the other pointing down, the front axle wants to twist. Of course the bushings give more easily than the front axle casing, and they compress before the axle twists. This is what limits front articulation in the Land Rovers. It's also what causes poly bushings to split and fail.
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  #12  
Old November 18th, 2008, 03:55 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlee
If you want caster correction, Old Man Emu makes caster-correcting bushings with eccentric centers. Normally, these aren't an option for me because I don't want poly bushings. But if you're going to go with poly bushings anyway, then I think swapping bushings makes more sense than swapping arms.

They are an option, but not durable enough for my needs. I have witnessed the OME caster correction bushing fail in less than one day of hard use. The nature of their design reduces the bushing material on one side of the bushing and increases it on the other, changing the caster of the axle. Unfortunately, they don't prove reliable.

The swivel ball is certainly an option, but the arms resolved all of my concerns at once.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlee
I think an easier solution than either of the above-mentioned solutions is to install a TruTrac front diff. The TT makes the vehicle self-center better than when it was stock. And I get more traction up front and a stronger front diff to boot. To me, this is easier than swallowing a bird to catch the spider, which you swallowed to catch the fly, which you shouldn't have swallowed in the first place.

The TT is certainly a solution for a vehicle limited to desert travel. Its appeal quickly deteriorates anytime snow, ice or slick surfaces are encountered. Understeer is violent and entirely unpredictable on these surfaces.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlee
The rear pinion angle is adjustable without changing the ball joint. Just change the length of the trailing arms. That's what I did. I just installed longer bushing bolts and used washers as shims until I found the length that I wanted. When I ordered a set of trailing arms from Rock Ware, I just told Matt what length I wanted. Now I have the pinion angle I wanted and the factory ball joint is still intact. I figured I was going to order new trailing arms anyway (the factory trailing arms are actually parts that fail and should be replaced), so why not specify a length for my replacement trailing arms.

Great solution for your application. I wanted complete adjustability, as my goal is to retain the rotoflex, which actually requires the pinion and prop-shaft to be at the same angle. If the rotoflex and a skid-plate proves unreliable, I will switch to a new driveshaft with a u-joint, in which case both the pinion and t-case angles will need to be the same to eliminate vibration.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnlee
I think you're confusing drop and flex for the front arms.

Based on my configuration, both crossed-axle articulation and maximum suspension extension are limited by the OME (N115) shock with the Inland Rover arms. With the front shock unbolted, crossed-axle articulation will drop another 1 1/4" before ultimate bind of the bushing in the arm cradle bracket.
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  #13  
Old July 6th, 2016, 07:14 PM
hks3sgte hks3sgte is offline
Cesar Gomez
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,094
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  #14  
Old July 6th, 2016, 10:35 PM
Scott Brady Scott Brady is offline
Scott Brady
KE7PNP
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Prescott, AZ
Posts: 267
It sold this morning.
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  #15  
Old July 7th, 2016, 08:40 AM
traveltoad traveltoad is offline
Aaron Shrier
KI6BCA
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: San Fernando Valley
Posts: 2,628
That was fast.
____________________
2003 Discovery
2007 KTM 950R Super Enduro - FOR SALE
2010 KTM 250XC-W
2016 SoulCraft Dirtbomb
2016 FoundryOverland

You only lost went running out o gas ,the rest is exploring Javier

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  #16  
Old July 7th, 2016, 01:32 PM
johnlee johnlee is offline
John Lee
K6YJ
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Torrance, CA
Posts: 16,150
I still think Scott should have sold that Disco for like $50,000 to some ExPoer who was dying for a piece of Scott's table scraps.

We'll see if whoever buys that Disco tints the windows.
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  #17  
Old July 12th, 2016, 12:36 PM
hks3sgte hks3sgte is offline
Cesar Gomez
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 1,094
Sold for $16k.

Rob needs to get his D1 ExPo ready.
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