My main aim is to build road legal, a tax exempt leaf sprung Land Rover
with serious off-road potential. Why not go for a coil sprung chassis?
The short answer is that I like being difficult! The long answer is a
bit more complicated. I have a sort of on-going competition with a
friend. We both try to achieve the same aim using different systems. For
instance he built an independent suspension radio control off-roader so
I built a beam axle one. Both vehicles achieve ridiculous amounts of
articulation (I can nearly get the axles of mine at 90 degrees to each
other!). Mine is more powerful and handles better but his is more
manoeverable as he went for 4-wheel steering. Off road they are pretty
evenly matched, with mine being better at steep rocky climbs while his
is better in tight spaces. There are some pics of the car here
So.. he has got a Range rover with the usual off road tweaks such as 2"
lift, double rear shocks, 33" tyres etc. This is one heavy machine
- the bumpers and sill protectors are made of 4" dia, 1/2" wall
hydraulic pipe! As he has already done the heavyweight coil sprung thing
I have to try leafs on a light weight vehicle. Sanity is not an option!
The first task was to find a suitable vehicle - a tax exempt Series II
or IIa 88" SWB with reasonable bodywork but rotten chassis. After asking
around I found someone who had a Series IIa with overdrive but without
cylinder head or rear halfshafts. The price? He wanted enough money to
buy a PTO pump for his hydraulic winch. Conveniently I had a PTO
hydraulic pump to fit his gearbox so the exchange was quickly made.
The bodywork was a bit more battered than I would have liked and the
bulkhead was .. er .. wasn't! However, at that price I was happy. After
removing the bodywork the full extent of the chassis rot and
prevous owner bodgery became apparent. There was no way that this
chassis could be put back on the road.