The chassis

The first task was to make some drawings of the main chassis rails. The only drawings I could find were in the Land Rover service manual (AKA The Green Bible). Although there are quite a few useful dimensions they are aimed more towards repairing or straightening an existing chassis. Out came the long straight edge, tape measure and CAD package.

Unfortunately I lost some of my earlier photos when a hard drive failed. Yes, I know - I should have made backups.

As my plasma cutter is only 2.5 metres long and the chassis is 3.4 metres long  the rails had to be joined in the middle. I used a V joint rather than a butt joint because it is stronger and it is easier to line up. The welds are not pretty but they are strong. My welding is normally better than this but I just can't get the hang of using CO2 and my Argoshield has run out.

This is the chassis with most of the crossmembers in place.

The front crossmember is completely non-standard because I had to move it forwards by about 6" to clear the Range Rover power steering box. You can also see a rectangular hole in the rear crossmember. This is to take a snatch block for the mid-mounted winch (see the winchpage for more details). The rear crossmember is also a less complicated design and made out of 3mm steel, rather than the original 2mm.

Here is how I made sure the spring mounts came out in exactly the right place. A steel bar goes right though both mounts and prevents them from moving when they are welded

There is a tube between the mount side plates to make sure they don't move.

How high is this thing going to be?
The spring mounts are 2" higher, like the long wheel base military version. With military shackles and parabolic springs there appears to be a frightening amount of space between the spring and the chassis. I hope this closes up a bit when I put some weight on it!