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  •   Martin reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    / #Land-Rover-SIIA / #Land-Rover-SII / #Land-Rover /
    Run by Tim Bulley
    Owned since March 2012
    Total mileage 40,354
    Miles since May 2015 report 704
    Latest costs £126

    The Landie was a reliable friend over the winter and early spring, regularly undertaking trips to collect logs for the fire, or ferrying the family and our new puppy Bramble to remote spots for a good walk. It even sailed through the MoT test with no advisories, apart from the obligatory oil leak.

    In March, I had a great run down to Goodwood for the Members’ Meeting with a car full of mates. Parked up on Lavant Bank, we watched the great and the good out on the circuit while enjoying a picnic and hot tea in the chilly spring sunshine. All very pleasant.

    The following weekend, I piled the family into the Land-Rover to drive to a pub for dinner. When we were ready to return home, however, she wouldn’t start. It was completely out of the blue, because the journey there had been fine.

    The Landie was turning over okay, but I tried the Power Start booster pack that I keep in the back for this kind of emergency. I also checked the HT leads and eventually tried filling her with fuel from a jerrycan, at which point she started.

    The SIIA got us home without any further issues but I was suspicious. On return from Goodwood I had filled her up, so I knew that the petrol tank wasn’t empty. There was no evidence of a leak, and it would have been immediately obvious if I’d put in diesel by mistake.

    The following weekend, SVR wouldn’t fire. I tried filling up the fuel again, but nothing. I took off the HT leads, gave them and the inside of the distributor cap a wipe with WD40and she burst into life. Problem solved, I thought, and set off to give her a run. Three miles up the road, though, she misfired and, as I pulled off into the village school car park, the engine died. Over the next half hour I got nothing from her, so called my mate Andrew Cameron.

    Although en route to get his hair cut, he kindly came to the rescue. Andrew’s been around old cars all his life, and suggested that the problem was probably the coil. He offered me a lift home so that I could pick up my Discovery and a tow rope. Before setting off, I gave my Land-Rovering mate Jono Lye a call to see if he was around to help with the tow. Jono is an engineer and owns a Series II that he rebuilt himself (I’m lucky to have some very handy mates). Always happy to diagnose a Land-Rover worry, he quickly agreed to lend a hand and dug out the old coil from his SII, suggesting that we give it a try.

    We set off to the car park, where Jono gave SVR a good inspection. The fuel pump was working and the leads were fine. Then a passing villager came to offer support, saying that he’d also owned a Series II (Surrey Hills is full of them). He suggested that we measure the current going in and out of the coil, and went off to find a voltmeter.

    Sure enough, there was 12V going in, but only 6V coming out. SVR has electronic ignition and I didn’t know whether a standard coil would work with it. Jono thought that it should, so we tried his unit but it gave the same reading. By this time, Andrew (with his new haircut) had returned with another coil. Still no joy, though, so we got out the ropes and called in the Disco.

    I posted a couple of pictures of the recovery on Facebook, which got the attention of the Landie’s previous owner, C&SC art editor Martin Port. He sent a message to say that he’d fitted the electronic ignition and that it was a ballastresisted circuit, suggesting that the resistor might be at fault as well as the coil. He sent me a link for an AccuSpark set-up and the next day I trailed around the few autofactors that were open on a Sunday in the Guildford area. I drew a blank at all of them, so on the Monday I called Phil Bashall at Dunsfold Land Rover to see if he had one.

    His advice was to revert the ignition system to points, saying that it would be cheaper as well as much easier to do the kind of roadside repairs that we had been attempting if ever the need arose again. So the next day I enlisted the help of another friend, David Ball, and towed the Landie to Dunsfold for Darryl Burdfield to swap the ignition back. Since then, SVR has been running like a dream.

    I’m pretty lucky on two counts. Firstly, I have a lot of old-car enthusiast chums who live within a few hundred yards that are more than happy to help if something goes wrong. Secondly, in the five years that I have owned SVR, she’s only left me stranded this once. Maybe I shouldn’t speak too soon, though. As I write this, I’m about to take part on the 200-mile Hope Classic Rally. Mind you, two of those mates are going on the event with their cars, too. Fingers crossed.

    THANKS TO Andrew Cameron / Jono Lye / David Ball / Dunsfold Land Rover: 01483200567; /

    ‘Always happy to diagnose a Land-Rover worry, Jono quickly agreed to lend a hand and dug out an old coil’

    Lye searches for the cause of the problem.
    Having reverted to points, the SIIA is now back in action, to the delight of Bramble the dog.
    Investigation included testing for a spark Swapping the coil didn’t improve matters.
    Modern Discovery made short work of towing the stricken Land-Rover home.
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  •   Martin reacted to this post about 4 years ago
    CAR #Land-Rover-SIIA / #Land-Rover
    Run by Tim Bulley
    Owned since March 2012
    Total mileage 40,540
    Miles since August 2015 report 186
    Latest costs none


    I first met Phil Wall just over a year ago. He was introduced to me by my friend Richard Eyre, who had invitedmeto listen to Phil’s idea for an event where he’d ask classic-car owners to lend their pride and joys to people who would pay top dollar to drive them in a rally. It sounded nuts – I thought it unlikely that owners of Ferraris, Maseratis and Astons would volunteer to let complete strangers loose in them.

    Then I met Phil, who is one of the most captivating individuals that I have ever encountered. He is driven by a powerful personal cause. Nineteen years ago, on a trip to an orphanage in Johannesburg, he met Zodwa – an 18-month-old toddler with HIV. He formed a bond with her where others had not been able to and tried to adopt her.

    To cut a long story short, the adoption failed, but he and his wife Wendy resolved to improve the lives of children orphaned by HIV. Nineteen years on, their organisation, WeSeeHope, is more than your everyday charity. Through its Village Investors Programme, it seeds small amounts of capital into communities to kick-start businesses, and trains young people in skills and enterprise, enabling them to have a sustainable future.

    I found his approach inspiring and clearly so did others. Now in its second year, the Hope Classic Rally has grown from 40 cars to around 50, with 100 drivers and passengers including me, my mate Jono and SVR 35H. This year’s drive was from Brooklands to the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu.

    The night before the off, we arrived at Brooklands and parked up alongside the likes of a Ferrari 250GT SWB, an XK120 and a Gullwing. The dinner was great fun and gave us an opportunity to meet some of the other participants. I sat next to Steven Baert and his friend Dieter Pétré, who had driven from Paris in Dieter’s Citroën DS. This was to be the car’s first outing since its restoration.

    My friend and neighbour David Ball was also participating in his 550 Barchetta, and had kindly donated his 456 and Lotus Esprit for others to drive. The sound of 50 cars starting up was nothing short of musical, then we got in line behind Dieter’s DS with David’s Lotus following us, and filed out onto Brooklands’ famous concrete, sounding our horns as we went.

    Before long, we were out in the Surrey Hills, following some twisting lanes. Jono was doing a sterling job at navigating and, even as two E-types overtook us, we were happy bouncing along at 45mph.

    Fifty-odd miles later, we turned down a single-track lane to arrive at our lunch stop, The White Horse at Priors Dean. The field in front of the pub was transformed into an amazing display of classics. In the rally marquee, we ate a fine BBQ lunch while listening to a live jazz singer. There I met Rachael, whose husband had won a competition that Dunhill had been running for clients. They had been given one of the E-types to drive and were having the time of their lives.

    As Jono and I checked the route for the final leg to Beaulieu, Ant Anstead from TV’s For The Love of Cars came over and was very complimentary about SVR. I knew that he was a big Land-Rover fan but, in the context of what was surrounding us, I told him that he was being very generous with his remarks, to which he responded by asking me if I wanted to swap cars.

    “What are you driving?” I asked, and he pointed to an ex-Duncan Hamilton Jaguar XK120. I was having such a fun day out with SVR that I wanted to complete the rally with her, but Jono was clearly keen, so I thought about it and told Ant that, because I was an owner-driver on the event, I wasn’t insured for the XK. He suggested that we grab one of the organisers, but someone shouted to start our engines and it was time to go.

    Back on the open road, SVR and the DS were leading a group that consisted of the SWB and Gullwing, plus a Ferrari 275GTB, a Daytona and the two E-types. Each time we reached a straight, we waved them on, enjoying the sound of the engine note as they roared past. Spectacular views on the run past Winchester gave way to the heathland of the New Forest, the convoy slowing every mile or so to give way to the famous ponies. Bang on 2pm, we arrived at Beaulieu to the delight of museum visitors, who were able to enjoy this eclectic display of historic vehicles.

    After a welcome afternoon tea, we heard from two of We See Hope’s supporters, who spoke about a trip to Uganda where they had seen the charity’s work first-hand.

    Talk moved to what more we could do to help. Phil Wall gave us the answer when he drew the day to a close. The event had raised £300,000, including a generous contribution from a donor who’d agreed to match whatever was raised in Friday’s auction. Phil had brought together a group of people who shared a love of classics, to harness their energy to help children in desperate need.

    His request was to spread the word, so please, if you’d like the opportunity to drive your dream car – or better still, if you have a classic and you’d be happy to put it to work – do get in touch with We See Hope ( You’d be saving lives and you’ll have enormous fun doing so.

    THANKS TO Jono Lye for navigating – and being understanding about the XK120

    Clockwise, from top left: awaiting the Brooklands start; dodging wildlife; Jono on the maps; Pétré’s DS kept the Land-Rover company en route; Bulley on typically reserved and understated form.

    Leaving Brooklands ahead of Ball’s Esprit.
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