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Discussion Starter #1
First off, Hello from Virginia.

Quick background. I'm a Chevy guy, with a wrecked M1009 Diesel Blazer in the driveway (no good deed goes unpunished), and a failed several year search for a 1969-1975 full convertible blazer that wasn't a total basket case rust wise.

Recently the option of a Series Land Rover came to my attention, and I was completely shocked at the availability of these trucks here in the states. Not only that, but in my limited searches up to this point I've found that swapping the 6.2 diesel into these trucks is not unheard of, possibly common.

So I suppose this is my noob request for answers to the following questions I could think of, and by all means, school me on anything I failed to think of, and is important.

1. are there any years/models of series trucks I should avoid?
2. are these trucks equipped with aluminum bodies?
3. are there common rust issues?
4. how strong are the drive train components? in relation to chevy 1 ton gear (IE NP 205 transfer cases/ SM465 and NV4500 transmissions / Dana 60 and Dana 70 HD DRW axles)
5. are all series trucks (including "pickup" versions) fully convertible?
6. what are the specs on the factory diesel in a 109 wheelbase 1975 series III?? is that a good/reliable engine?
7. what are the drive train components in these trucks?
8. Ive heard that the electrical systems on these trucks are unreliable, any truth to this? if so, how bad a mess are the harnesses typically?
9. aside from a simple swap from spring-under-axle to spring-over-axle, are there lift kits available for these trucks (some chevy habits never die)
10. Just how expensive are these trucks to own/operate/maintain, keeping in mind I'm a fairly experienced wrench spinner, but don't currently know how to weld or do body work (why my K5 is dead).

I think 10 questions is a good place to start, Thanks so much for any and all advice y'all see fit to give.

skal.
 

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Greetings and welcome.

1. are there any years/models of series trucks I should avoid? Not really, though SIII has a fully syncro gearbox, IIA's don't
2. are these trucks equipped with aluminum bodies? It's an aluminum alloy on steel frame. Bulkhead is steel
3. are there common rust issues? Yes
4. how strong are the drive train components? in relation to chevy 1 ton gear (IE NP 205 transfer cases/ SM465 and NV4500 transmissions / Dana 60 and Dana 70 HD DRW axles)There's no real comparison, though the series transfer case is very robust. Then again, Land Rovers, other than the 1 Tonnes, were not really meant to compete with 1 ton trucks
5. are all series trucks (including "pickup" versions) fully convertible? Convertible to what? The entire truck unbolts
6. what are the specs on the factory diesel in a 109 wheelbase 1975 series III?? is that a good/reliable engine?62BHP @ 4,000rpm, 103ftlb max torque @ 1700rpm. Later 2.5l's had a bit more
7. what are the drive train components in these trucks?Land Rover
8. Ive heard that the electrical systems on these trucks are unreliable, any truth to this? if so, how bad a mess are the harnesses typically?What is usually the problem is previous owner's work
9. aside from a simple swap from spring-under-axle to spring-over-axle, are there lift kits available for these trucks (some chevy habits never die)Not that I'm aware of, other than 1 ton extended shakles
10. Just how expensive are these trucks to own/operate/maintain, keeping in mind I'm a fairly experienced wrench spinner, but don't currently know how to weld or do body work (why my K5 is dead). Overall I don't find them more expensive. They do require regular maintenance. Of course that also depends on how you use them and what you break.

My first "off-road" vehicle was a 1970 International Traveall and other than towing, I was quite happy going to a Series Rover.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Greetings and welcome. thanks!



3. are there common rust issues? Yes I'm guessing floorpans, quarter panels, wheel wells?

5. are all series trucks (including "pickup" versions) fully convertible? Convertible to what? The entire truck unbolts LOL ok fair enough, what my question was, If I am looking at one with a hard top, can i take the hard top off and drive it around topless, like an early Blazer, Bronco, Jimmy, or jeep wrangler.


8. Ive heard that the electrical systems on these trucks are unreliable, any truth to this? if so, how bad a mess are the harnesses typically?What is usually the problem is previous owner's work that sounds like a pretty solid answer.

10. Just how expensive are these trucks to own/operate/maintain, keeping in mind I'm a fairly experienced wrench spinner, but don't currently know how to weld or do body work (why my K5 is dead). Overall I don't find them more expensive. They do require regular maintenance. Of course that also depends on how you use them and what you break. also pretty solid and honest answer.

My first "off-road" vehicle was a 1970 International Traveall and other than towing, I was quite happy going to a Series Rover.
Thanks for all the info.

-E
 

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Actually the floor pans are alloy as well. The wings (fenders) have some steel splash shields under them that can be rusty. The Land Rover chassis is a box construction which is generally stronger and more rigid than 'U' channel, but if the drains aren't kept clear then they can rust from the inside out. The door frames are steel so are often rusted.

Yes, you can completely remove the top. Though if it's a 5-door there are B pillars between the front and rear doors that can't be removed.
A 5-door could get down to this (less the hoop at the top, that's custom work).


A 3 door (or 2 door) can get down to this.
 

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First off, Hello from Virginia.
... 6.2 diesel into these trucks is not unheard of, possibly common. Not unheard of but maybe not a good thing to do. IMHO too big, too heavy, too much power. They have also been made into rails for drag racing, also maybe not a good thing to do.

1. are there any years/models of series trucks I should avoid? Avoid? Doesn't sound like you are wanting to keep it stock. If you were, 1959 to 1962 is a bit difficult to get certain engine parts for. How tall are you? How much leg room do you "need"? The bulkhead behind the front seats is a bit close for some people, preventing the seat going back very far. The long wheelbase station wagon has more front leg room. The seat bulkhead can and has been removed by some people but is also a structural component so needs some bracing if removed. Seats that fit are not common unless specific for the vehicle, unless you find certain ones that fit.
2. are these trucks equipped with aluminum bodies?
3. are there common rust issues? Yes. As mentioned, the chassis, from the inside out. Also the fire wall (bulkhead); door frames, door posts, radiator surround. All repairable and after market replacement panels/ inserts are available.
4. how strong are the drive train components? in relation to chevy 1 ton gear (IE NP 205 transfer cases/ SM465 and NV4500 transmissions / Dana 60 and Dana 70 HD DRW axles) Transfer case is the strongest component possibly designed for a max of 150 hp (IIRC). Other items aren't as strong, even the stock 70'ish hp engine can be too much at times. It is pretty much a spitting image of an early 1950 Willy's CJ drive train except the LR axles are much more robust with a full floating axle. The axles twist off pretty easily but this can be over come too.
5. are all series trucks (including "pickup" versions) fully convertible? Take the top off? Yes.
6. what are the specs on the factory diesel in a 109 wheelbase 1975 series III?? is that a good/reliable engine? Good? Reliable? Yes, if you like 60 hp. Pretty anemic.
7. what are the drive train components in these trucks?
8. Ive heard that the electrical systems on these trucks are unreliable, any truth to this? if so, how bad a mess are the harnesses typically? Simple systems but they all have separate grounding wires from every light ect. So more bad connections possible. I have had minimal problems on my 1970. New, replacement harnesses are easily available.
9. aside from a simple swap from spring-under-axle to spring-over-axle, are there lift kits available for these trucks (some chevy habits never die)Don't do a spring over. It isn't needed and makes for a bad design. You can extend the spring mounts and shackles a couple inches and put aftermarket "Parabolic" springs under it that add an inch or two to stock heights. The military 109 has a 2" higher (lower?) spring mount option as standard fitment. The truck comes stock with 32" tires and can take a 34" without modification or adjustment. I've seen 35 and 36" tires but with fender trimming. How much taller do you need it/ want it?
10. Just how expensive are these trucks to own/operate/maintain, keeping in mind I'm a fairly experienced wrench spinner, but don't currently know how to weld or do body work (why my K5 is dead). Standard parts are not any more expensive than Chevy parts but are a lot less common. You won't be able to go to the local parts store or auto wrecker.
Depends on what you want to do to it or what you have to replace, fix or modify whether parts costs are high or not. Some things are rare so expensive. Some things are cheap and readily available but you might have to wait a few weeks for over seas delivery and a part that can be modified, or fits, might be in stock at an incredibly expensive supplier over here.
 
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