The DiscoDavis Discovery 1 Mayhem Thread

#1
Not much to go here. I got really, really bored this winter and snatched a 1995 Discovery 1 with the 3.9 and 5-speed off craigslist in Prescott, AZ. If you read any of the D3 build thread, the original plan from 2013-2014 was to find a white Discovery 1 with a 5 speed and start there. However none could be found at the time, or at least in running shape.

2018 mileage: 212,XXX

Her name is Elizabeth


The day we flew down and got her, evening on the first day driving home.


Colin helped a ton with putting an 02 sensor in for me to pass smog... Booo CA.


Of course I had to immediately find some defender wheels and pizza cutter tires. (Michelin XCL 4x4, 205 85 R16) (apparently these are THE RRC tires for classic rebuilds, I'm sorry I'm wasting these! They just came with the wheels...)

Short story time:
Guy I bought her from neglected to disclose SEVERAL issues, he stated she drove fine, no issues, and told me before we got tickets and flew out that everything worked that should work. WRONG! Many many electrical items were inop.
>rear defrost inop
>rear washer inop
>headlight washers inop
>rear wiper inop,
>reverse lights inop
>drivers side rear window switch (the one on door) inop
>Diff lock warning light inop
>coolant cap failed (barfed a bit of coolant every once in a while as I discovered later)

and majorly,
>the transmission whines like a banshee in almost every gear
>2nd gear's syncro is basically gone
>Transmission was almost empty of fluid
>LT230 almost entirely emply of fluid (like seriously crazy low)

Some stuff we discovered as we drove with him, some stuff we discovered later while driving... He played hardball and I should have walked away but did not. We paid a good amount because it had no rust anywhere, and had the rare trans with white color and complete base interior, no sunroofs etc.

He also neglected to explain that he bought the car from someone in CA in 2014, and never informed the DMV that he bought it, did not smog, did not pay taxes on sale, did not even change the title. It was super asinine for him not to have changed the title, especially because you still have to smog it anyway. Hit with a ton of penalties because of this when I returned to register it. Whatever. Not going to publicly slander this dude. Sketch factor 9000 on the whole thing.

About an hour into the drive the whine became a scream. The transfer case was getting too warm and confirmed with the IR heat gun. Opened the case at a truck stop in Havasu and it was nearly empty... I thought we broke it, maybe only a small puddle of fluid was inside. Proceeded to buy truck stop EP90 (thankfully it was a huge truck depot) and flushed, refilled. Immediately quieted down. The next day we checked the trans and that was low too but not really bad.

Basically don't do what I did buying this Land Rover. Do as I say and not as I do etc. etc.
 
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#2
Picked her up from Prescott on a Friday, drove 900+ miles home with our carryon bags full of tools from the flight. Surprisingly no mechanical issues aside from wailing noises.

Short list of work I did just to make her run OK.

She has 200k+ on the clock by the way

>paid some sketchy man in San Jose to steam clean the motor and drive train. B- job but was good enough to wrench on
>new alternator (bosch)
>new power steering pump and lines (hers exploded :(, thanks again Colin for doing this, I did not).
>changed oil, went to 15w-40 rotella conventional, think the filter was K&N HP3001?
>changed transfer case fluid again with new fluid to finish cleaning it out after 1000 miles EP90
>changed transmission fluid from the ATF dexron III we got during the drive home, to Redline MTL
>Diffs were both actually perfect in level and fluid quality
>got a coolant cap
>cleaned and seafoamed the intake, a bunch of the PCV hoses were gunked up and clogged with oil. Mostly solved the worst of this oil drip
>rewired the hella lights switch to a simple toggle from some dumb PIAA momentary switch (impossible to use blind).
>sikaflexed a lot of the window seals to try and stop it raining in the car
>replaced transmission bias plate (had snapped), replaced with new and springs.
>greased propshafts

Honestly I am amazed every day we get home from work in one piece. I just keep oil/coolant in her and check fluid levels in drivetrain. She shifts OK and drives fine. Heaters work perfectly oddly enough.

Considering the next purchase I may sell her to someone wanting a project. You may need a new trans at some point but she's kind of like the little car that doesn't die. Slowly starting to love her.
 

low_49

Whats this button do...
#3
Don't sell it.
After searching for a D1 of my own and finding a rust free 50th anniversary with only 98k carfax verified miles, I too discovered that there was a TON of differed maintenance to be done. But after dropping an additional 2k in parts alone on it, it's become a wonderful truck that I would drive to the ends of the earth without hesitation. I can say without a doubt, it is the most fun vehicle I have driven since my 66 Bronco. It's an honest truck and doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it is. For that, I love it.
The added bonus that as I work on it, I can find traces of the hands that built it here and there, only adds to it's character. The truck has a personality and a soul to it. My LR3 was a great truck, but was a soulless (albeit capable) machine. I had no problem selling it. My D1 on the other hand...no.
 
#4
Agree. She's doing what a Disco does. She's keeping on. Despite a lack of love and plenty of neglect, like a faithful dog, she isn't biting the hand that feeds. She's trying to please
 
#5
I know we've talked in sidebar, but I have to say with those pics...def hold onto her. Fantastic job doing the maintenance and minor mods to retain the classic quirky looks of a D1. There is something sublime about a near stock truck; everytime I see one I try to rationalize getting a companion for Coyote's overbuilt reality. Sadly the wife is not buying that concept (she is demanding a series), and I already have 2.5 Rovers in the barn...but it is so tempting.

Great looking truck.
r-
Ray
 
#6
I don't necessarily know Land Rovers, but I do know vehicles in general, and buying any used vehicle usually means taking on a boatload of deferred (read: neglected) maintenance. Plus, if you sell it, you're likely to loose what you already have in it, and your next purchase will simply have a different, but likely no less expensive, list of deferred maintenance.

Looks like a great starting point to me!
Bill
 
#7
Between the 2 D1's I have had I miss the 95 the most. Like Coyote she was a bit overbuilt and I did a ton of work to her. It is still the only Rover that I would catch people taking pictures of in parking lots and at gas stations. They just inspire adventure. I have no doubt I would like to own another.
 
#8
I've just sold my '94 Mpi to a young enthusiast in my village. I've held on to her for months now, just gradually doing a bit and a bit, knowing she had to go, but knowing she had to go to the right person. Now she has. Disco's are special things, they find an owner who will love them and look after them
 
#9
Don't sell it.
After searching for a D1 of my own and finding a rust free 50th anniversary with only 98k carfax verified miles, I too discovered that there was a TON of differed maintenance to be done. But after dropping an additional 2k in parts alone on it, it's become a wonderful truck that I would drive to the ends of the earth without hesitation. I can say without a doubt, it is the most fun vehicle I have driven since my 66 Bronco. It's an honest truck and doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it is. For that, I love it.
The added bonus that as I work on it, I can find traces of the hands that built it here and there, only adds to it's character. The truck has a personality and a soul to it. My LR3 was a great truck, but was a soulless (albeit capable) machine. I had no problem selling it. My D1 on the other hand...no.
That's the hard bit! She's turned out to be a good car and I feel bad sometimes all of what I use her for is commuting to and from work! I guess the nice part is that she racks up consistent long drives instead of the usual grocery hop that never gets all the oil warm...

Agree. She's doing what a Disco does. She's keeping on. Despite a lack of love and plenty of neglect, like a faithful dog, she isn't biting the hand that feeds. She's trying to please
Well some days she does like to throw a tantrum, very hard to catch 2nd if you forget what you're driving! ;)

I know we've talked in sidebar, but I have to say with those pics...def hold onto her. Fantastic job doing the maintenance and minor mods to retain the classic quirky looks of a D1. There is something sublime about a near stock truck; everytime I see one I try to rationalize getting a companion for Coyote's overbuilt reality. Sadly the wife is not buying that concept (she is demanding a series), and I already have 2.5 Rovers in the barn...but it is so tempting.

Great looking truck.
r-
Ray
Ray,

Thanks again for the encouragement. Compared to the Disco 3 maintenance has been easy so I can't take much credit (someone did the PS pump for me though!). I love that you can buy all the fluids at the local parts store and not worry so much about the LR branded magical liquids... And with a new trans she'll be a bit more fun. For now it's still somewhat like driving the Top Gear comedy car that frankly I'm amazed gets me home every time. That said... maybe listen to the wifey ;) . A series would be mondo cool.

And I don't know what it is about barns and rovers but they go together so well! What's this 0.5 of a rover I am now hearing about? :ylsmoke:

I don't necessarily know Land Rovers, but I do know vehicles in general, and buying any used vehicle usually means taking on a boatload of deferred (read: neglected) maintenance. Plus, if you sell it, you're likely to loose what you already have in it, and your next purchase will simply have a different, but likely no less expensive, list of deferred maintenance.

Looks like a great starting point to me!
Bill
You're absolutely right hence the hesitation to sell... I already wouldn't get much back out of her. Thank god she's an early one and can share some parts with the defender. Thanks!

Between the 2 D1's I have had I miss the 95 the most. Like Coyote she was a bit overbuilt and I did a ton of work to her. It is still the only Rover that I would catch people taking pictures of in parking lots and at gas stations. They just inspire adventure. I have no doubt I would like to own another.
I hear this a lot! Sadly Elizabeth blends in a bit more what with all the expensive Range Rovers and LR4's patrolling our town. A few odd looks at the wheels though :)

I'll tell you all a few more quirks about her (adding to the Top Gear Comedy Car effect):

>Genius LR anti theft device = if you stall in 1st gear - usually having to do with a vacuum, idle, or throttle issue - , Elizabeth decides she will not start and you must pop the hood and start massaging the distributor cap and all the wires. Then when she is happy enough from this spa treatment she will again start

>Elizabeth also decided that because we live in such a safe and tight-knit community that we no longer need the door locks to work. If I try to lock the doors I am chastised for my impoliteness by having the car alarm start sounding. I now carry my work duffel everywhere! Free exercise!

>To top it off, on very cold days Elizabeth does not like the drafts that come with opening the hood and thus the hood release cable will freeze up and jam. You must wait until she is ready and warm!

-Connor
 
#10
As you go from 1st to second pull the stick towards you as well as moving it back

As an aside, there's a company over here called Syncro Gearboxes www.syncrogearboxes.com/ run by a great bloke called Shabs Percy. He does nice stuff - lots of nice stuff; one of which is a 'quick shift' that makes a good R380 into a great R380
 
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#11
The door lock issue is the Alarm Spider

Spray chain oil as far up the cable as possible, then use and air line to force it the rest of the way - do this from the inside catch out...
 
#12
I seriously considered this D1 as I specifically wanted a 94-95 Alpine White 5spd with cloth interior. Talked to the seller but because of unclear info and the fact that I am in Atlanta made me hesitant. I have relatives in Scottsdale but about the time that I decided to pull the trigger; it was sold.

Since I was not able to find another like vehicle other than one in TX that was at a used vehicle dealership that would not return calls, messages or emails: I chose to go newer. I ended up with a Chawton White Kalahari D2. This one had 110k miles and history that included head gasket replacement about 15k miles previously. It has a few issues but the PO was free with disclosure and most issues are well documented and easy enough to correct.

My current D1 has served well and is currently being stripped of parts to assist others.

Congrats on your projects!
 
#13
Watching your build, since the '95's are going to be 25 years old here soon, I have a hankering for a RHD 5speed TDI. Cloth interior and all manual. Keep up the great work!
 
#15
That is going to be the hunt! Figured that the Disco's just aren't as sought after as the Defender's, should be able to find a good deal. Will have to work on getting a knowledgeable local contact across the pond to aid in the hunt.

I had a stripper '99 (no sunroofs), almost nothing but blanking plates everywhere. it did have leather and power windows/locks...PITA. I want the same thing, just 100% manual. No sunroofs either.

How difficult do you think that hunt will be?

View attachment 388707

24 years old in August 2017, 5 speed, 200Tdi, no rot. My keeper