Ideas for increasing top speed of 1973 Series III - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old July 31st, 2014, 05:21 PM
LRColorado
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Ideas for increasing top speed of 1973 Series III

Just bought a 1973 Land Rover 88. Forgive me as I get familiar with the terminology and flow of this site. Prior to purchasing it I was well aware the vehicle was not meant for speed, however, I would like to be able to drive it on the highway periodically. Right now it rides great up to 45mph. When I push it to 60 mph it is a white knuckle experience. Thanks in advance for your insight.

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  #2  
Old July 31st, 2014, 05:25 PM
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You can get an overdrive.

The only difference with the overdrive is that you'll get to white knuckle experience a bit faster.
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  #3  
Old July 31st, 2014, 05:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRColorado View Post
Just bought a 1973 Land Rover 88. Forgive me as I get familiar with the terminology and flow of this site. Prior to purchasing it I was well aware the vehicle was not meant for speed, however, I would like to be able to drive it on the highway periodically. Right now it rides great up to 45mph. When I push it to 60 mph it is a white knuckle experience. Thanks in advance for your insight.

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I'm sure there will be a while bunch of clever remarks regarding your quest for speed in a Series rover, but do a search in the Series Technical section for "fairey overdrive" or fairey O.D. Until you see something
It should be stated that I'm not a Series expert, but have heard that's what is used for an overdrive kit
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  #4  
Old July 31st, 2014, 05:35 PM
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I am expecting some clever remarks. I did a quick search on overdrives and what I read said you can get about 10 mph more with an overdrive. I would like 15-20 mph more (60-65 mph). Again I am a newbie and appreciate the input.
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Old July 31st, 2014, 05:35 PM
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Trevor Griffiths
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All this talk about overdrive would be a good solution for an aural assault at speed in a Series. I think by whiteknuckle experience, John means that his Series may have an inability to travel in a straight-ish line, or the front prop shaft splines are so worn, the vibration has altered his ability to see straight, therefore increasing the grip on the wheel, hence 'white knuckle'.
My S3 88" will travel at 60-80 (all depends on how far the needle swings on the speedo) within it's lane, without overdrive. (I have an overdrive; I keep it under the bench, in smaller parts than a whole od).
Did you get a set of Green Bibles when you bought the Rover?
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Old July 31st, 2014, 05:36 PM
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shayne young
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Make sure you spell fairly with an E..if you spell it without you get a whole bunch of different results..mainly pointing to Pedro and his GTT...
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Old July 31st, 2014, 05:36 PM
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Throw it out the back of a plane? Or swap in 10 spline 3.54 diffs from a Classic Range Rover. I have a couple of them....free to you if you come get them. They're in a pair of axles I'm about to scrap. I'd like to have the space back.
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Old July 31st, 2014, 05:44 PM
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Getting it up to speed isn't going to change the white knuckle ride..it's all to do with the suspension and steering.. A little play in everything adds up to a lot and makes for very vague "handling".. And then when you brake...well that's a different white knuckle all on its own..
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Old July 31st, 2014, 05:58 PM
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Good chance it needs bushings and tie rods ect. X2 on the half shafts, they may need to be addressed, could also be the drive flanges. I mean 'white knuckle' could mean a lot of things...

Truck should get up to 65 on flat ground; in guessing it's a 4 cyl petrol?
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Old July 31st, 2014, 06:06 PM
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Yup, we need clarification on the problem. If you haven't got your foot down holding the pedal to the floor, you haven't reached max speed. Don't mind the screaming sound of the engine as it doesn't seem to bother it (I have tested this extensively). Like Trevor mine can go plenty fast as long as there is no incline, the OD just makes the squirrels sound less closer to death.
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  #11  
Old July 31st, 2014, 06:39 PM
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You should be able to cruise fine if the engine is tuned right.

My 66 IIa abulance which was heavy as hell still cruised at 60-65.
my 80 109ex mod I had would do 70 flat
my 73 Lightweight with over drive did 90........most terrified I have ever been in rover, plane, bed room or combat zone.
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  #12  
Old July 31st, 2014, 06:40 PM
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Agreed with the above comments. It would seem that there are some issues which need to be addressed to bring the vehicle back to proper operating condition before you think about things like overdrives. What carb is on it? When was the last time it was tuned up? Have you done a compression test?
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Old July 31st, 2014, 06:44 PM
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Keep in mind that most of you guys are at sea level. There is about a 20% power loss at 5000 feet of elevation.
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Old July 31st, 2014, 06:52 PM
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It has a 2.25 Petrol engine. I will look tonight to see what the carb is. All I have done is change the oil and flushed the coolant, When I had it up to 60 mph it was challenging to keep in my lane and backfired when I let off the gas. I have not given it a tune-up or checked the compression, but seems like those things would be good next steps.
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Old July 31st, 2014, 07:38 PM
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Carb details

Looks like the carb is a Weber TIPO 34ICU
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  #16  
Old July 31st, 2014, 07:43 PM
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My To-Do-List

So I need to initially:
  1. Change plugs and Wires
  2. Check compression
  3. Change points, rotor, etc.
  4. Should I assume the coil needs replacing?
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  #17  
Old July 31st, 2014, 07:45 PM
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Then there's your answer.. The engine really has nothing to do with your being able to keep it in a straight line..you have steering or suspension issues..how much play on your steering box and linkages etc etc.. What tyres are you running.. The backfire could be as little an issue as an exhaust leak..
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Old July 31st, 2014, 07:47 PM
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dude you are driving a pissy little petrol engine at 6250ft above seat level...aint nothing going to help you get to 70MPH in Colorado...nothing except a normally aspirated 350 V8 transplant...don't listen to Galpin that bitch drives like a raped ape down the road - and he is at 800ft ASL
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Old July 31st, 2014, 07:50 PM
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I only need 60 mph. It does hit that speed but steers more like a boat and rattles like it will start shaking loose parts..
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Old July 31st, 2014, 07:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRColorado View Post
It When I had it up to 60 mph it was challenging to keep in my lane
Steering suspension..if he was to put a nitrous 350 olds engine in it..(see what I did there..lol..) he would still have the white knuckle ride..lol... Seriously..steering suspension play..

------ Follow up post added July 31st, 2014 07:51 PM ------

If you have the shitty old tyres on it I would start there...
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