Land Rover Series One Club
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Author Topic: How did it begin?  (Read 352 times)

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May 17, 2019 - 22:37
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Offline Jono

  • LRSOC Member
  • Location: Nottinghamshire, UK
Evening all!

One thing I always enjoy talking about when wandering around rally fields seeing people and their machines, is how they became interested, and eventually came to own their vehicles. So I thought a thread were people could share their stories might be an interesting idea.

When I first became involved helping a good friend of mine look after his collection of Steam Rollers, he recommended to me that to learn the basics of engines and get into the rally scene I should buy a vintage tractor. My Father was visiting a client of his at a scrapyard in Bourne, Lincolnshire, where he spotted amongst a collection of vehicles the chap had collected a very rusty 1956 Nuffield DM4 Tractor. I went back to take a look for myself, and bought it for 420. I kept in contact with the chap on and off, and I'm sad to say he passed away recently of cancer. I still have the DM4, and a couple of years later it gained a partner in a very cream crackered Nuffield 3DL, which I rebuilt over a couple of years.

When I passed my driving test, again at my friends suggestion, I began hunting around for a Series 3 Land Rover. His reasoning was cheap insurance and getting a tax exempt example to save on money. Eventually, I saw in a magazine an advertisement for one at a dealership in the Peak District. We went to have a look at it, and agreed to be ahead with the purchase after the dealership carried out some work my friend had noticed needed doing. My Father bought it for me for my 18th, probably expecting me to sell it on eventually,

Sorry to say, to say she was bought as a fully restored vehicle, some issues became immediately apparant! On only her second day with me, her brake master cylinder failed while I was going down a hill. The dealership took her back the next day and replaced the cylinder. Unfortunately other breakdowns occurred in quick succession, such as the clutch master cylinder dying while going down the slipway to join the A1, and the gearbox forever having issues until I had it rebuilt professionally. Except for the engine and axles, over 10 years I have slowly rebuilt what was bought as a fully restored vehicle! I could never part with her though, and she was my wedding vehicle alongside one of the steam rollers.

Fast forward three years, myself and my friends were having a break and natter between working on the steam rollers. My friend Andrew was contemplating taking on a lorry unit restoration he had been offered. He started digging into me saying if he was getting another machine, so should I! I replied that if he bought the unit, I would buy a Series 1 Land Rover to go with my Series 3.

A couple of weeks later, he rang me up to say I had better get hunting as he had agreed to buy the unit! RVO 364 came up for sale on ebay, and after seeing the original buff logbook stating she was sold new from Central Garages in Retford to a local farm, I knew I had to buy her. Retford was where my Father had his company at the time and where I was employed. She was a 21st Birthday present to myself you could say! She was moved from place to place for a few years before I could properly start on restoring her, which began about 3 years ago now.

Although Andrew had said he had bought that unit, I never did actually see it. The owner of it unfortuanly had to scrap it after a workshop fire. He did eventually get a unit, but it was five years after I had bought RVO 364!


May 18, 2019 - 06:48
Reply #1

Offline vkj999

  • LRSOC Member
  • Location: Kent, UK
My Series One addiction started when my father bought an ex Barretts demonstrator 86 inch for his work, I was 14 at the time. The Land Rover had to do everything, tow a caravan, carry welding equipment, drive pumps and be a family car. I even used it to plough a field. I just took it for granted that if you wanted a job done the Land Rover would do it. I became an apprentice at a local garage and serviced many working Land Rovers and became adept at coping with road traffic accidents using the company Land Rover breakdown truck( sorry I never thought to take any pictures) When I was 21 I joined my Father's firm and by then we had another Series One that became my 'company car'. Much later in the Seventies, by then a retained Fireman,  I saw my present favourite, looking sad and lonely having failed it's MOT test. The number plate was  VKJ 999. I was smitten again. Much welding followed and my new Land Rover became a workhorse and toy, pulling our horse box to events and my race car to circuits far and wide. It now leads a more gentle existence having last weekend 'done' the London to Brighton Historic Commercial Vehicle Run and the occasional trip around the lanes.