Sorry, don't mean to give you a heart attack - she's absolutely fine. In fact, she's going to be better than ever with @beaker303's loving touch.


This post is for those that are kinda smitten with our 1973 Landrover, Buttercup. I mean, who wouldn't be? She's a gorgeous beast. However, she definitely is a project vehicle, so here she is in the garage getting a makeover. Hopefully she'll be ready for adventures come summer, so up to then, we'll just be using the van.

The old chassis was somehow not an original landrover chassis, and seems to be made of other bits - lots of patches and the bumper was a welded-on square section, the rear was just a piece of welded section, and what really got Jamie is that there was a hole running from the back to front to put on a PTO (a power take off, so you can run a circular saw or a winch or any farming equipment) and any classic landrover should have this. If you buy a landcruiser, you can't run a bandsaw off it. So you couldn't get to that or crankshaft the engine (you need this if your starter motor is screwed or your battery is flat) - all because of that back bar bumper. He wanted the classic look so you could see that hole, plus, it had a lot of rust.

He picked up a galvanised chassis from a guy in Brisbane, who drove it down - some 19 hours solid driving away (1800 km drive) from the guy, who didn't seem to mind as he was picking up something else in Victoria. It came to the grand total of 600 dollars, which really is a bargain.


Thus, he's been stripping the paint off with a high pressure washer ready for etch primer and black enamel. Once that's already, he'll move the gearbox mount and the engine mounts, changing the gearbox mount so it's like a military vehicle so it's moveable and can be taken out if need be rather than take it out of the door.

The engine will be stripped down and rebuilt, new piston rings and whatever else needs doing. It's a 2.25 petrol engine, the original engine from 1973! We did debate about putting a diesel TDI in it but kinda want to keep it original. It'll be as new when Jamie is done. He'll also rebuild the gearbox, put new leaf springs on, and a new bulkhead which replaces the one that had accident damage. This needs changing slightly from a 6 cylinder bulkhead to a 4 cylinder one. Then he'll start swapping everything from one chassis to the other, painting everything as he goes to Camino Gold, a kind of desert colour. He would prefer teal, but as he just said, he doesn't have a choice because he has a wife.

And how can you have a teal Buttercup?

By the way, if you think I know what I'm talking about, I don't - I'm just dictating what Jamie's telling me as he cooks me dinner.

There's a few other things he'll do as well - new roofrack, refurbished rooftop tent, new electrics and so on. New lights, spotlights. It won't ever be perfect, but it'll be more original than it is now and look pretty good. And all the ones he has seen for the same money we paid for her, look a helluva lot worse - she's gonna look gorgeous.

Ah - he's still talking. The engine is going to be a beautiful duck egg blue colour, which is rare.

Has he stopped talking yet?

He's already painted in a nice limestone colour the Landrover Defender wheels, put some mud terrain tires (for going in mud, he is explaining, which gives me a chance to correct the grammar and so on). For the moment we're keeping the SAAB 9000 seats in there, though we've got the original seats which he might get re -covered, but Iike the SAAB seats because it's more comfortable.

My last few posts have been pretty emotional, so it's nice to chat about old Butters. Jamie jokes that that's the thing about Landrovers - no emotions to be found.

What a load of rubbish - if anything happened to Buttercup, he'd be crying his eyes out. And so, I think, would I.




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