VIN Issue: VIN Stamped on wrong spring hanger - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:32 AM
MN_Vagabond
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Bruce
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VIN Issue: VIN Stamped on wrong spring hanger

Hey Guys,

Newbie here, with a quick question about the a VIN being stamped on the right spring hanger, instead of the standard left.

Some background info:

I am from the US, currently living in Germany, and the vehicle is a 91' Defender 90, which I am looking to import to the US next year under the 25 year rule. I have checked the VIN on the brake box on the engine, and it matches fine. All the paperwork checked out, and I figured I was in the clear. I went to check the VIN on the left spring hanger, but nothing was there.. it looked as if the existing spring hanger had been refinished or replaced. I checked the right side for sng, and low and behold, the correct VIN was stamped there.

I've called some importing specialists in the UK to ask if this is normal/legal, and all the answers have been.. noncommittal at best, and understandably so. I've contacted the seller, who has experience with Defenders, and he said he would have the vehicle taken to an authorized land rover delearship to have the VIN stamped on the correct side (also to obtain documents to prove autheticity and alleviate any possibility of tampering). He insists this will solve the problem, but I'm not convinced..

If the paper trail looks good, VINs match up (albeit in the wrong place), and the spring hanger is restamped, would it be safe to import? I have a year to unload it here in Germany if need be, but I really, really want to bring this beauty home with me. Definitely need some expert advice on this one. Thanks guys, look forward to hearing back!

-MN_Vagabond
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  #2  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:40 AM
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? You should be looking at the right front frame horn from the wheel well.
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  #3  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:47 AM
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shayne young
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Yes.. Sitting Inside The vehicle right side is right side..and as zac mentioned, it's on the right front frame horn.. I would find it highly improbable that the factory inadvertently stamped it on the left front..
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  #4  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:47 AM
MN_Vagabond
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Bruce
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Sorry for the confusion, but when I say left side, I meant left side if I were standing in front of the vehicle looking at it (passenger side of a LHD).

------ Follow up post added April 2nd, 2015 03:49 PM ------

Right, and I don't anticpate this being a factory issue, and I certainly wouldn't gamble on that either. I'm looking to see what my options would be to still take it back considering the misplacement of the VIN (even though its correct).
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  #5  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MN_Vagabond View Post
Hey Guys,

Newbie here, with a quick question about the a VIN being stamped on the right spring hanger, instead of the standard left.

Some background info:

I am from the US, currently living in Germany, and the vehicle is a 91' Defender 90, which I am looking to import to the US next year under the 25 year rule. I have checked the VIN on the brake box on the engine, and it matches fine. All the paperwork checked out, and I figured I was in the clear. I went to check the VIN on the left spring hanger, but nothing was there.. it looked as if the existing spring hanger had been refinished or replaced. I checked the right side for sng, and low and behold, the correct VIN was stamped there.

I've called some importing specialists in the UK to ask if this is normal/legal, and all the answers have been.. noncommittal at best, and understandably so. I've contacted the seller, who has experience with Defenders, and he said he would have the vehicle taken to an authorized land rover delearship to have the VIN stamped on the correct side (also to obtain documents to prove autheticity and alleviate any possibility of tampering). He insists this will solve the problem, but I'm not convinced..

If the paper trail looks good, VINs match up (albeit in the wrong place), and the spring hanger is restamped, would it be safe to import? I have a year to unload it here in Germany if need be, but I really, really want to bring this beauty home with me. Definitely need some expert advice on this one. Thanks guys, look forward to hearing back!

-MN_Vagabond
I'm no expert ... there are a few on the forum ...

VIN in the wrong place is probably about as useful as no VIN at all. The seller has no skin in the game if your truck gets confiscated at a US port. I understand that the replacement was probably for legitimate reasons but it sound like an expensive sob story waiting to happen.

I would ditch the truck while you can ... the longer you wait the less time you have to find a suitable replacement.
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  #6  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:58 AM
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shayne young
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If it's on the left side of the vehicle looking at the front of the truck then it is the right side which is the right side... Do yourself a favour and save yourself a lot of aggravation down the road... The left side is the left side when sitting in the vehicle... A left hand drive car is not a right hand drive car when looking at it from the front... LHD is on the LEFT side of the truck..ergo..the stamping will be on the right side which is correct..calling the right side the left side will get you into all sorts of trouble when ordering parts... I teach my guys not to even use the terms drivers side or passengers side, because LHD or rhd throws stuff into a confusion..
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Old April 2nd, 2015, 09:58 AM
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Thanks Jason. I'm really starting to lean that way, but just wanted some second opinions in case.

------ Follow up post added April 2nd, 2015 04:00 PM ------

Shayne, yeah sorry about that. I had just gotten off the phone with the seller, who's english isn't the best, so the literal explaination I was giving him was stuck in my head.
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  #8  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:04 AM
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shayne young
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So you're thinking of selling it because the vin is in the CORRECT place..???
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  #9  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:07 AM
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Bruce
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haha no Shayne. The VIN is in the wrong spot right now. Instead of being stamped on the right side wheel well like its supposed to be, the VIN is stamped on the left. They match up with the paperwork and brake box, but its still in the incorrect spot. Something tells me customs wouldn't be to keen on letting me keep it if they found it that way..
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  #10  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:15 AM
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Okay... So.... Sitting in the vehicle facing the steering wheel, the vin on the frame is on YOUR left or YOUR right..?? If it was on the left That would make the last letter of the stamping towards the back of the vehicle..!!
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  #11  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:20 AM
MN_Vagabond
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Bruce
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Sitting in the vehicle, the VIN is stamped on my left, under the front wheel well. I know it sounds very strange, and it is. I will try and snap a pic after I get off work for reference. Anyone have any knowledge of something like this happening? Perhaps a lazy repair or dumb iron replacement?
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  #12  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:23 AM
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As others have stated its sure to be an issue at import, and may have been replaced due to damage or other reasons.

That said, nothing surprises me with mistakes from the factory at this point...came across this beauty recently on the internet. Notice the "3"s...
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  #13  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 10:23 AM
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shayne young
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Then if that's the case then I agree with Jason, you could be looking at a whole world of problems no matter if you get it re stamped or whatever..
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  #14  
Old April 2nd, 2015, 11:31 AM
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Not necessarily mistake from factory :


1. There has been (and still is) a lot of VIN tampering with Land Rovers, especially Defenders, in Europe. However if the intentions were bad, they would for sure not put it there and at least try to have it look factory original.


2. Different countries have different rules in Europe. In some countries the DMV equivalent can put the VIN or even a new VIN in different places on the frame after, for instance, restoration with a new chassis or welding on the place with the original VIN number. This makes it official in that country and other countries from the EC but very doubtful it makes it official for USA.


I have imported a few Defenders but would not take the risk on this one, sorry.
The only thing I can advise you to discuss this situation with US customs before you ship it over.
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  #15  
Old April 3rd, 2015, 12:09 PM
MN_Vagabond
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Thanks everyone for the great advice. I figured it'd be an issue, but its good to hear it from some experts.
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