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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After many years of wanting a Defender I finally bought a 1994 D90 NAS ST (#1317) in AA yellow with 83k miles and mostly stock. It spent its life in Idaho and California so there is virtually no rust. It unfortunately didn't come with any records, it has already been resprayed, and there are some signs of aftermarket work so in my mind this is not a candidate for a full restoration back to original. This will be driven weekly and wheeled a good amount but taken care of.

So my plan is to do a restomod of sorts where I will keep some things stock while upgrading certain things....but keeping the Landy spirit alive. I will post here my progress but for a full write up and more pictures check out Defender 90 Build — Silicon Valley Motor Club. So far I have ensured it is mechanically sound and lucky we found very little it needed. All we had to do is tighten up some bolts, replace some light bulbs, flush the coolant, and replace the catalytic converters.

Restore:
  • Dash parts that are cracked
  • Replace lots of missing bolts and screws
  • Restore original cubby
  • Replace rubber mats or find a carpet set (not sure yet)
  • Clean up some of the wiring
  • Replace door and trim seals
  • Replace random rubber parts that are cracked
  • Put back on the factory labels (these were lost when it was resprayed)
Upgrade:
  • Old Man Emu 2" suspension package with heavy duty coils
  • 30mm spacers
  • BFG AT KO2
  • It came with an ARB bumper but no winch so we will add a Warn VR EVO
  • Chequer plate (black) on wing tops and rear corners
  • Terrafirma rock sliders
  • Exmoor Loc and Fold rear seats with 3 point seat belts added (I have kids)
  • Exmoor front seats
  • Replace a lot of plastic bits to metal to prevent future cracking
  • Maybe replace wheels
461458
 

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Congratulations on your purchase. With most buyers I tell them to put 20% of their purchase price aside for repairs and deferred maintenance within the first year.

Wish I could make it to your car club meet I'll probably be out of the state. Make sure you look up the Northern California Land Rover club as they are very active.
 

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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
You mentioned restomod, what are your plans for that part of the work?
Still trying to figure out how far to go. Brakes, air locker, Dana upgrade, eventual engine swap all come to mind but trying to find the line of where to stop. Open to suggestions based on people's past experiences.
 

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Still trying to figure out how far to go. Brakes, air locker, Dana upgrade, eventual engine swap all come to mind but trying to find the line of where to stop. Open to suggestions based on people's past experiences.
Given that it’s a NAS my opinion is that you’re thinking about going too far / too many mods. You have what appears to be a nice, fairly original NAS...leave it alone.

What you’re talking about is best suited for a ROW truck. However, given your residence in CA, I’ll acknowledge that owning a ROW truck is easier said than done.

At the end of the day, it’s yours so do what makes you happy. As a big fan of NAS trucks I’d like to see it left as is.
 

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#1 thing is to confirm the oil coolers lines have been upgraded.

#2 thing is to properly insure it
 

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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Given that it’s a NAS my opinion is that you’re thinking about going to far / too many mods. You have what appears to be a nice, fairly original NAS...leave it alone.

What you’re talking about is best suited for a ROW truck. However, given your residence in CA, I’ll acknowledge that owning a ROW truck is easier said than done.

At the end of the day, it’s yours so do what makes you happy. As a big fan of NAS trucks I’d like to see it left as is.
Yes I have been really struggling with these facts as well. I appreciate your point of view. I agree a ROW truck is a better candidate to go more nuts on mods. And you are right the fact I am in CA means a ROW is possible but hard and a pain. The seat upgrade is a must as I have kids and frankly the inward jump seats are simply unsafe, but I will keep the jump seats in storage in case I or someone else wants to go back. I guess I can consider really sticking to bolt-on as much as possible to give me option value later. Thanks for the input.
 

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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
#1 thing is to confirm the oil coolers lines have been upgraded.

#2 thing is to properly insure it
Its insured for $80k yet I did not pay that. Thanks for the suggestion on the oil cooler lines.
 

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yea bolt ons are no big deal at all. and its the type of insurance thats the key here, you want agreed valve insurance, standard just wont cut it. and +1 on the oil cooler lines
 

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'94 NAS 90 ST
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Would agree to the less is more approach. there is something novel about a 100% stock antique vehicle (25 yrs+). There is also somethng about making it yours, but reversable (keep your old parts so the next owner can choose original or your mods).

You'll inevitably find a list of work needed as you dig in...as expected with a 27 yr old vehicle. Rather than chart out grandiose plans now, just start with the small stuff, learn the vehicle and do what seems right.
 

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Reviewing your list I would also strongly recommend against carpet in a NAS ST - especially with kids :)

The exmoor moulded matting is worth its weight in gold IMO
 

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Yea agreed, if you like stop by my place with it and we can go over the major systems so you have a shopping list of "now, soon, eventually" . We have done this with a few members of the club.
 

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The seat upgrade is a must as I have kids and frankly the inward jump seats are simply unsafe, but I will keep the jump seats in storage in case I or someone else wants to go back.
The jump seats were not what came stock with the ST. You might consider getting the stock shoulder belts and fold and tumble forward facing rear bench seat. You can often find guys willing to swap the bench setup for the side facing jump seats.
The bench is not perfect but more of a viable option for rear passengers.
 
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Still trying to figure out how far to go. Brakes, air locker, Dana upgrade, eventual engine swap all come to mind but trying to find the line of where to stop. Open to suggestions based on people's past experiences.
x2 for above, I (personally) wouldn't go nuts on a NAS from a change things out perspective and as @Naplm00 said I'd stick with bolt-ons too. But you can make some headway on brakes, diffs/lockers & stereo/nav without permanent changes. Good luck with it, I'd love to have a NAS ST some day.
 

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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I really appreciate everyone’s comments and feedback. One of the odd things about my truck is that my rear roll cage bar doesn’t seem to be stock as it does not have the rubber/foam covering to the bar. I guess it is possible it is stock but at some point the rubber/foam has been cut off. Bummer because as far as I can tell it will be near impossible to find an OEM replacement for that bar.

461490
 

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94 Defender 90 NAS ST, 16 LR4 Landmark, 19 Sprinter 2500 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The jump seats were not what came stock with the ST. You might consider getting the stock shoulder belts and fold and tumble forward facing rear bench seat. You can often find guys willing to swap the bench setup for the side facing jump seats.
The bench is not perfect but more of a viable option for rear passengers.
My rear bar has no rear seat belt mounting tabs so if my truck originally came with a fold and tumble bench it only had lap belts. I would love to find an original fold and tumble bench or even a new replacement bench that matched the original style but I can't seem to find one.
 

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Rovers North has announced they will be selling a NAS ST cage. I don't know when or if you can just buy certain parts.

bench for sale-
 

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My rear bar has no rear seat belt mounting tabs so if my truck originally came with a fold and tumble bench it only had lap belts. I would love to find an original fold and tumble bench or even a new replacement bench that matched the original style but I can't seem to find one.
Used NAS benches come up for sale often enough. You’ll find one. Within the last month or two a couple of them have been for sale here...probably still for sale if you scroll the For Sale section. Also, try @rovertrader, he may have one.

If you need belts and hardware for the bench seat start pricing it out...it’s not cheap to covert (IMO).
 
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