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Swank's 1992 Land Rover Range Rover Classic

Swank1975

Member
So we picked this up early last summer in Denver for $1200. The shocks were blown, the brakes barely worked, it didn't have a battery, and it was rather disgusting inside. The odometer stopped working at around 265K miles. The good is the body was in pretty good shape, all power windows, locks, lights, signals, power seats and moon roof worked, and the frame had no rust. We grabbed a battery and drove it home with my wife following me for safety. In hind sight I probably should have had it towed but I made it. My wife and son have both been a great help with working on this.

Last summer we put on the following: Terra Firma Lift kit with new shocks, Terra Firma caster corrected radius arms on front, all new suspension bushings, a new rear load assist arm ball joint, new wheel bearings, new axle seals, rebuilt the front swivel balls, new front CV joints, rebuilt the brake calipers, new longer brake lines, new pads and rotors, fresh fluids in both diffs, transmission, transfer case, and engine, new steering track bar and tie rods with new ends, new steering stabilizer, new BFG AT tires, and recovered the headliner. It drives great and has done a couple trips to Slaughterhouse and done well.

When I tested out the engine which was obviously pretty week it made 85-100 PSI per cylinder across all 8 cylinders. It doesn't have milky oil or oily coolant but occasionally it will over pressurize the coolant system and vent some from the coolant reservoir cap then the coolant level light will come on. I can throw in a little mix and keep going. It doesn't over heat but I know it's indicating a problem with the head gasket or block. So with that said I know I'm needing a fresh, more reliable, and stronger engine for this beast.

Today I met a guy named Jon (said he was going to try and go to the next meetup in Arvada) and purchased his old 3.9 Engine, Transmission, and Transfer case from his rover. He just had a Diesel swap put in to his Rover and no longer needs the items. The vehicle was well maintained and had 170K miles on the clock before being take out. I'm going to clean these components up and freshen them up and put them in the Rover.
 

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REDONE

Active Member
It's taken me a while, but I've really learned to appreciate Rovers. That looks like a swell project!:)
 

Swank1975

Member
Well yesterday I started the teardown on my engine that's going in my Rover. Today I finished teardown. Next is clean up, inspection, and reassembly with new parts. They include:
1) headgasket kit
2) New cam and lifters
3) New valley pan gasket
4) New timing chain and gears
5) New oil pan gasket
6) New main Seals
7) New exhaust manifold gaskets
8) New front engine cover and water pump gaskets
9) The oil pump was just recently replaced as well as the water pump
 

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Swank1975

Member
Just down to gaskets. The crosshatching in the cylinders still looks good. The engine has approx 150K, good compression, and was pulled for a diesel swap by Roadside Werx. The rover it was in was driving out to Moab last summer before the swap was started in fall.
 

Brad

Administrator
Staff member
Sorry I have been so busy lately Mike. I am always available if you have any questions.
 

Swank1975

Member
I think I'm doing ok. If you see anything that jumps out in any update pics let me know. I have been using the rave. Torqued new head bolts to spec. 15ftlb, 90 degrees, and 90 degrees. Used composite head gaskets, surfaces were straight and clean and cleaned up bolt holes before installing bolts with oil on them.
 

Swank1975

Member
More update. Posting on here and front range 4x4 as I frequent both of these forums. Funny I joined Solihull society and their site is just dead. I don't bother posting over there.
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New cam and crank gears for timing chains are on, front engine cover is on, correct water pump gasket arrived and is installed, some accessory brackets and parts are going on. Next is installing new lifters and putting push rods and rockers back on then setting clearance.

Brad Peterson do I set the valves on this just like other small block chevys where you unload the rocker so the push rod is free then just tighten the rocker down so it just touches the push rod? Then test the hydraulic lifter still compresses as they are not pumped up yet. I know to soak them in oil first before installing and I'll use assembly lube between the lifter and cam at the contact points.

Then I can put on the valley pan gasket and intake manifold. I'm still going to pull the oil pump apart, inspect it, replace the gasket, and pack it with Vaseline for priming. I'm ordering a drill oil pump primer shaft unless someone has one I can borrow. I intend to have this engine fully primed before starting. Luckily with a distributor motor and this oil pump drive system I should be able to do that.

I'm getting so excited. I just can't hide it.
 

Swank1975

Member
And more update. Lifters, push rods, rocker arms, valley pan gasket, intake manifold all on. Oil pan cleaned up and ready to install. I have the wrong oil pan gasket. The one rimmer bros sent was too long. ??
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Swank1975

Member
OK The engine, Trans, and T-case are all out of "Tommy". This is our new name for the Rover. We named it Tommy because of our new sunroof shade cover material. Now I'm going to mate the newer Trans and T-case and work them under the rover. We used my new harbor freight trans jack and floor jack together to lower them down. I will just lift it all into place then put the case mount bolts through to the truck frame.
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Swank1975

Member
Woohoo. The transmission mount and transfer case mount bolts are in and they are basically in place back under the Rover
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. I still have the jack under them until I install the cross brace. Wires and cables are all hooked up. I need to grab a new bolt tomorrow for one of the mounts and I can button that part up. I thought the transmission was empty and the drain bolt was in the way so I pulled it out and made a huge mess on the floor under the rover. When I'm done mounting these the floor and tools under the rover are all getting cleaned up for the next stage. I'm sore.
 

Swank1975

Member
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Yesterday was prepping the engine and bay for the newer engine install. We checked bolts, took the AC compressor off the newer motor as I left my compressor in the Rover still charged and pulled over to the side, installed the torque converter, and buttoned up a few loose ends. The engine is now hanging on the hoist and has the flex-plate and flywheel ring installed. Monday we're planning on dropping the motor in and starting to hook things up. Who knows by next Sunday the 27th I might be trying to start it. :) I found my positive cable from the battery to the starter is has broken down insulation. That is definitely getting replaced. I also have some other + wires to replace or repair. Then I'll re-wrap all of those with new flex loom for protection. I don't want to do all of this work then end up with an engine fire.

Edit Just ordered this fancy battery cable. I figure for the price, materials, and time this one was worth it. Built for the discovery 1 or Range Rover Classic. I like the heat sheilding down by the starter to protect it from the exhaust. That is where my current cable is cracked and has conductor exposed.
 
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Swank1975

Member
Got my butt kicked yesterday. Tried putting the engine in the rover. We had already done the torque converter shuffle where you sit there and wiggle and turn it past the splines and until the body notches are engaged with the oil pump. We were pretty sure we had it. While trying to get the engine in I had it lined up, 4 bolts started to help line it up, did some wiggle and started to draw them up and about 1/2-5/8" from mating up it started binding. I didn't torque down on them because I shouldn't have to if it's right. I monkeyed around with it for the next few hours including pulling the engine out and rechecking the converter seating. It seemed right. Then I took the old converter and trans on the floor and mated them up. Then I used a stick and measured 1 7/8" from the stick across the bell housing to the flex blate bolt blocks. when I checked the one in the rover I had 1 3/8". I tried seating that converter again to get that last bit and I just cannot find it. I eventually got fatigued and gave up for the day. SIGH

10/23/17 update so I'm not flooding the board with posts. lol The engine is installed. WHEW... So When I thought I had the torque converter in all the way I actually didn't. I had to slowly turn it while tapping with dead blow hammer then it went it. I figured this out using a straight edge and my calipers to measure how far the flex plate base that meets up to the torque converter was out from the engine block. Then I used that same dimension locked into the calipers to verify the torque converter was in the bell housing far enough. What a bitch........

Now it's sitting on it's engine mounts and 4 of the bell housing to block bolts are started. The hoist is out of the way and it's hopefully home for a long time.
 
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Swank1975

Member
Time for an update. I'm hopefully very close to done. I have it about 99% together (minus air cleaner, fan shroud, etc). The donor radiator I put in with the motor had a leak and had to swap that out. Ended up needing a new distributor. Got that in and installed. Turned the key on today and I'm leaking from an injector. Kicking myself in the ass for not just getting all new Orings for them. I did clean them up when the engine was apart and thought they looked good, greased them and reinstalled. Now I get to remove the intake plenum and fuel rail to do it right. :)

Still hoping to start it today.
 

Swank1975

Member
Thanks for the tips and a special thanks to Brad for giving up some of his time to help me go through diagnosis steps. Turns out I have finally figured it out and have concluded I'm a knucklehead. LOL

I had plugged the Injector #1 connector into the coolant temp sensor that is about 2" from that injector that uses the same connector. I did notice the plastic on the coolant sensor is more of a grime covered dirty which which is easily confused with the grime covered dirty gray the injector plugs are. LOL I should have labeled plugs better on disassembly.

So now it's running good. I'll do more shake down driving tonight after work and Friday.