Did the smell of EP90 gearbox oil make you look at the complex, yet simple, gear lever combinations and wonder if you were leaving an oil stain behind?
|Land Rover Series II 109"|
My first drive in a Land Rover Series was the day I offered to buy a 1968 Series II 2.286L diesel. She was named Jaboa (after the previous owners: Jenny and Brian's overland adventure) and was perfectly modified for expedition travel. Her steering wheel wobbled in my sweaty hands as I drove her North from Johannesburg. Traffic congested behind me as I double-clutched in an attempt to select the right gear for the smooth but hilly motorway. The radio, mounted on a wooden roof console, struggled to be heard over the clatter of the diesel engine. The Fairey overdrive required a punching action on the gear lever to get it to engage and would squeal brutally under load. Equally, the brake pedal required a strong shove to pump enough brake fluid through the pipes to engage the ancient drum brakes. Sounds tough, but it was a pure pleasure!
I spent the next few months in 1999 driving around Southern Africa, mostly in silence, as it was difficult to keep shouting to my passenger, over the racket of the gearbox and engine! She was renamed to 'Mrs Golly' for Grand-Old-Lady, as she had a fine presence about her which attracted many admirers, and a few detractors who voiced their opinion about Land Rover. You can read all about my first overland adventure in this very amateur blog, which I created in 1999 (with very low resolution scanned photos): To Africa & Beyond
I have borrowed the concept of 'The Anatomy of a Land Rover' from Nick at Langebaan-Sunset blog. His idea of labeling the external and internal features of his Land Rover Defender is a good and practical way for all overlanders to ponder what accessories we considered worthwhile.
This is the Anatomy of a 1968 Land Rover Series II 109":
The beauty of buying a 2nd hand fully expedition prepared Land Rover is the fact that I didn't need to spend lots of my money on kitting her out. I added a two metal cases in the back, which stored food and daily cooking items, and did not need to modify anything else. The previous owners had even hung curtains which rolled up when not in use.
|Fuel Log Book|
Vehicle number plate: CPX784T
Model: 109" Station wagon
Engine: Series III 2.286L diesel engine
Built: Port Elizabeth, South Africa
Unit number: H131
Additional items: Fairey Overdrive, dual battery system, long range fuel tank, Rooftop tent, and fridge.
|Trip Log Book|
Max speed: 60Mph (on a serious downhill)
Max fuel load: 90 Litres (excluding the possible 8x 20L jerry cans)
Fuel Consumption: 12L / 100Km
Tyres: Firestone 7.50X16
Average price for diesel in South Africa (1999) was R2.40/L
I often ponder this question to myself:
'Would I take a Land Rover Series on an extended overland trip again or do I enjoy the comforts of a modern vehicle too much?'
|Transferring diesel from spare tank to jerry can|