Belt change

As the Haynes manual states the auxiliary and the power steer belt should be changed every so many miles, also when I start the engine a short squeal is heard. Not a very hard job but I managed to mess this up in a great way.

To take of the auxiliary belt the tensioner should first be relaxed. But before you do this you should of course first loosen the securing bolt that holds the tensioner to the engine. I did not do this.... As a result the bolt broke. To find out what bolt this was I ordered the official Land Rover parts manual. This book is full of exploded views with part numbers of every part of the entire car, highly recommended!

After finding the correct part number for the bolt I ordered and installed a new bolt, power steer belt, auxiliary belt and auxiliary belt tensioner. Job done.


IRD and engine oil change

Changed the engine oil, filter and the IRD oil. Not a very hard job. I had no record of the last engine oil change so it seemed like a good idea to do it now and keep records. Engine oil had no surprises, the IRD oil however did show some scary symptoms. The oil was silvery and had some small metal parts in it. I guess the parts are from broken spacers from inside the IRD. Not good.

Since the oil was out I was curious about the state of the pinion. I loosened the nuts on the drive shaft but had trouble removing it from the flange. To get it loose I attached a hose clamp to the CV joint on the drive shaft and carefully tapped it loose.

When the pinion was finally loose I could not see any visible damage to the gears or excessive play in any of the gears or bearings accessible. I reassembled the IRD and drive shaft and filled up the IRD with oil while following the instructions in the Haynes manual. To be safe the next plan is to get hold of a new IRD, preferably a newer unit with the newer/better ratios.


Installing a portable radio set

Having a portable radio set in the car should be fun. Every now and then we set out with multiple cars and having an easy way of communication always comes in handy. I did not want to mess around with battery's so I got a cheap radio set including a DC charger base/holder.

It took a while to figure out where to place the charger, eventually the small storage in the tailgate was the best fit. This way the radios are also out of sight when the car is locked, it's not an expensive set but could be convincing enough for someone to break open a window for it.

The charger unit is 7.5 VDC so I needed a DC/DC converter, again a cheap option was at hand by using a plug-in cigarette DC/DC type. The unit was stripped and the input and output cables were attached directly to the PCB.

The power is sourced from the central cigarette lighter, a cable was added and routed beneath the carpet along existing wires the the back of the vehicle. Here the DC/DC converter is attached behind the bodywork and all cables are labelled. The charger base is fixed with screws to the base of the tailgate inner plastic. Some Velcro straps are attached to the charger to secure the radios while in the charger.

We have been using this setup numerous times since installed, pretty cool to always have fully powered radios at hand! The maximum range is about 3 to 5 kilometres, which is good enough most of the time.