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95 rrc swb 3.9 engine swap

5804 Views 22 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  LRrefugee
I need to replace my engine and am wondering if I should try to find a 3.9 rover engine or if I should be looking at replacing it with a different engine? Would appreciate any suggestions/advice anyone can give. My mechanic said he could get a 3.9 with 134, 000 miles on it for $1200 and with labor and everything else am looking at a $3500 bill. Thats a lot of money to be spending on swapping out my engine (142000 mi) for one with 134, 000.
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Why are you replacing engine?
Its been making a knocking noise for over a year now and I was told by 2 different shops it was the lifters. Finally decided to take it in and have them replaced. Turns out it is not just the lifters but the rod bearings as well. Sucks! Just had the head gaskets replaced last year.
The lifters cost $15 each and rod bearings $99 for a set.

I have a complete 3.9 engine (still in truck and running fine) and a 4.2 short block for sale.

Have you checked with Paul Grant?
Just sent Paul an email. British Pacific has custom rebuilt engines for $4495. Any thoughts on these?

Land Rover 3.9 Engine - Remanufactured
You might also talk with DnD Fabrications: D&D Fabrications: Engineering & Fabrication Services
Where are you? That might make a difference in who you'd be referred to.
I'm rebuilding a 4.6 long block for half the price of AB/BP.
I think DnD is in Almont, Michigan - 790 miles.
One of the best with RR motors.
What about replacing the 3.9 with a 4.6? Which is a more reliable engine?
That can be argued either way, but I'd ask DnD Fabrication their opinion.
3.9 was it original engine?

I am about to buy 1995 and it has a 3.9 with 133K. I thought that they had a 4.0 in them. I was little surprised. I am wondering if it was swapped.
Classic = 3.9
P38 =4.0
So I have a bad rod bearing which is the reason I need an engine swap. Probably a stupid question but would it be worth it to try an ebgine flush flush? I have a can of gunk motor flush sitting in my garage.
Probably not if his diagnosis is correct, but his cost to swap motors ($2,300) looks very high.
Plus I wouldn't pay more than about $500-$600 for a used motor with 134,000 miles unless you had all the records.
I'd find another LR tech for a second opinion too. I don't trust him based on what you've posted.
Ask for recommendations for your area on this board.
Engine swaps like yours could be done in a day by an experienced LR mechanic.
Unless your local mechanic charges almost $300/hr. I think he is ripping you off.
I did take it to another shop for a second opinion. Same diagnosis except they are wanting to put in a rebuilt 4.6 engine, total cost $11000. I dont think so! The other shop, I have neen taking the rover there for a few years, found another engine with 76k for $1350. No record of head gasket replacement, which seems to be a common occurence as u have called around to other places. So I sm thinking I will go with the 76k engine fore $1350 and have the headgaskets and lifters replaced while its out. An also having the water pump repkaced, so with that and all miscellaneous I am looking at $4500. I am in the kansas city area if anyone else has a better suggestion.
Buying a used engine is a roll of the dice unless you have the complete service records and are sure it never overheated.
The price and mileage both look low to me.
I bought a 4.2L motor from a Florida LR wrecker - 59,000 miles - $2,200 plus shipping and when we pulled the heads we discovered serious pitting in #8 cylinder. We had pulled the heads to update to the newer gaskets and that voided the engine 90 day guarantee so they wouldn't refund any money.
So, unless you know and trust the seller, be very wary of used engines.
Just because you got a $11,000 price from another mechanic doesn't mean your current mechanic is acting in your best interest.
You are considering spending a lot of money on a vehicle that I hope you intend to keep for a long time so I'd be very careful in my decision.
For the third time: Call DnD Fabrication and ask them what to do and for the name of a good, honest LR mechanic in your area.
I'm parting out a 1993 SWB 3.9L that I've owned since 98 and it is a good, smooth and strong running motor with never a tick or clack. $900 in the truck - in Orlando Fl. I replaced the water pump at 95,000 (not overheated - only preventative maint) and completely rebuilt the distributor 15,000 miles ago. The truck is rusty but drivetrain is strong. call me at 321-223-1199 to talk about the rover. its about 122K and has run 100% synthetic mobil1 since new.

It's sad to part this one out. The demon was corrosion in the wiring harness and the EFI cut out, never to be debugged by me, 3 factory mechanics, 3 computers, etc.. It will start and run on quickstart.

Will be listing all parts and prices shortly on a new thread.
The perfect power train for my County LWB??

I know we have purists who believe the land rover is the greatest motor vehicle in the history of the combustion engine-(and I respect their passion).
However, my 1995 LWB doesnt pull as well as a good old american truck, the electrical is overly complex (and is known to catch fire as other posts reveil).
So....If I just really love the look of my County LWB and want to tow my airstream and enjoy a problem free classic.....
why wouldnt I do a full power train swap to something less complex and more reliable and if I did what does history say is the best power train-engine/trannie/rear end/etc/etc to go with?
Since were talking about $4,000 engine exchanges why not spend $10,000 and get something really useable?
thank you
We looked at Airstreams one time and I remember they said no to Range Rover Classics for towing them.
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