chassis & axles

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The chassis came to us in seemingly very good condition, for a 1997 chassis there was no serious rust and only a light surface rust and even some paint in some places. No cracks or anything that needed repairing were found.

In this type of expedition the chassis needs some under body protection but we think it is possible to go unnecessarily far. If you are driving at competition level were every second counts and you are going to extremes you do not want to be wasting time by worrying about bending and denting things. As we are planning to take a year over driving though Africa we are not going to be going at the speed or taking the risks that necessitate extreme under body protection.

Heavy duty steering guard with tow points 3 piece bolt together, steel with galvanised coating Paddock PM724
Front differential guard Bearmach, Double bolt, steel zintex coating Paddock PM121
Rear differential guard Paddock PM614
Flat bull bar with lamp guards Bearmach, black nylon coating, enough space to stand on bumper Paddock BA005/2
Side steps Wrap around aluminium tread plate Rebel4x4
Fuel tank guard Only one we found for 300tdi 110, very simple, looks good OEC
Back steps Dixon Bate APB Trading
Tow jaw Dixon Bate 3.5 Ton Paddock 201661

Paddock heavy duty steering guard Bearmach front diff guard Bearmach flat bull bar with light guards Rebel 4x4 side steps Overland Equipment Company fuel guard and Dixon Bate Tow Jaw and step


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The headache of how to upgrade the suspension was quite a big one. The 'reasonable' extreme is lifted, 50mm (2inches), and uprated springs or the other is going with standard springs. The lifted/uprated option will give you greater ground clearance and offroad ability, less body roll and a meatier look. The downside is greater angle on the prop shaft UV joints and the front axle needs castor correction angle bushes. The original spring option will give a softer ride, especially important when driving over corrugations but the weight of all the expedition equipment may make the springs sag a bit, reducing the ground clearance. To combat the sag an 'Air helper kit' could be fitted. This is a pressurised air bag mounted inside each of the rear springs which take the extra weight. The pressure can be adjusted to suit road conditions.

The shock absorbers have been upgraded to OME (Old Man Emu) Nitorchargers, the originals will be spares. This was a simple decision as these are generally accepted as the best way to go.

Front springs Blue/red and yellow/white (heavy duty) Paddock NRC9449/8
Rear springs Red/green Paddock NRC6904
Shock absorbers OME Nitrochargers APB trading
Air helper kit Matt Savage


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The body came with wing top aluminium checker plates and not much else that was not standard. The bonnet had a spare wheel mount which we have removed. There is a small crack in the bonnet which may or may not be due to the weight of the wheel. Also the wheel made the bonnet very heavy to be opened on a daily basis.

The design of the 3 door 110 Defender produces a large amount of unused space under the rear wheel arch, where the rear doors on the 5 door version would be. We have fitted, well Robs father fitted (we where away working), a twin jerry can locker on each side. These allow us to carry 80 liters (4 jerry cans) of fuel very low down.

Snorkel Safari Snorkel Paddock DA3026
Heater wing air scoop Famous Four
Twin jerry can lockers APB Trading
Side window Defender Center
Side graphics Sempa4 Graphics
Swing away wheel carrier Bearmach swing away rear wheek carrier Paddock BA132
Bonnet checker plate 3mm Rebel4x4
Front bumper checker plate Rebel4x4
Spot lights Rebel4x4
Rear lights Trailer lights stop/tail/indicator/number plate, wired into towing electrics Attwoolls

Safari snorkel and heater wing air scoop Side window, side graphics and jerry can locker Hi level rear lights


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The cab originally came with a center seat fitted, occasionally useful in the UK (though not very often) its impractical for Africa and the space can be used a lot more usefully. We have fitted a secure steel cubby box with a lockable stereo compartment. The speakers for the stereo are 10cm items and we have mounted them in the roof linings, there is just enough space behind. We also picked up, in New York, an FM transmitter that allows us to connect our MP3 players to the car stereo without wires.

On the roof lining we have mounted two storage nets, for paper work and other small things.

Cubby box Mobile storage systems basic model OEC
Stereo Goodmans Argos 500/3497
Speakers Kenwood Argos 500/3538
Storage nets East C L

MSS cubby box, Goodmans stereo Storage nets and Kenwwod speakers


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The rear of the interior is based around the need for safe and effective storage of all our equipment and a place that may be used for sleep is the situation requires, heavy rain or security.

safes, security screen,


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The engine has not been modified very much, cost for one reason and reliability the other. Mainly the work done on the engine was repairs and hopefully preventative work.

We have replaced the air filter with a foam version that needs very little maintenance and if it gets wet or dirty you just wash it and hang it out to dry.

Air Filter ITG APB Trading


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split charger

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