eBay Car Challenge Land Rover Update

With the help of eBay, Dan is restoring his beloved Series 2A Land Rover

Ben Gribbin

Ben Gribbin

June 14, 2017

Hello, I'm the editor of FunRover. I'm a massive Land Rover fan. Currently own a TD5 90. 2015 MR Blogger of the Year
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A short while ago, we shared the story of Dan and his Series 2A, 'Bertha'. Given £4,000 as one of the finalists of the eBay Car Challenge, Dan has been working flat out on rebuilding his Land Rover. We managed to grab 5 minutes with him to find out how the restoration is progressing.

Dan thanks for joining us, we know you are busy! How's the restoration going in general?

The eBay Car Challenge has been an exciting roller-coaster and learning experience – twelve months ago I would have been gobsmacked at what I could achieve in such a short space of time.

I’ve been working flat out. Bertha still hasn’t got a roof and I’ve had to remove the entire front section to work on the engine as the motor needed a complete overhaul. I’ve loved getting my teeth into the challenge and it’s been great to tap into the super helpful eBay and Land Rover community along the way. It seems everyone will bend over backwards to help!

Have you restored any vehicles before?

I’ve taken on restoration jobs before but Bertha is my first full restoration, and one which is extra special to me. I bought her when I was just 18 years old as my first car for £800. She remained unused and unroadworthy for close to 20 years, due to a long list of ailments, before being dusted off for my 40th birthday last year. The eBay Car Challenge was just the boost I needed both in terms of cash and motivation to get Bertha going again. I’m still so surprised that I’m one of the selected restorers, and it’s been an exciting challenge and opportunity to get her back on the road.

Have there been any surprises along the way?

One of the biggest surprises has been the wealth of advice from other eBay sellers. The day after my new wing panels arrived, the seller rang me up to have a chat about the job. He sent me pictures to guide me through the installation properly and checked I had the right tools and equipment.

What parts / tools have you ordered off eBay so far?

I wanted to keep true to the 4X4s heritage, so you can imagine how happy I was to find an eBay seller making original specification panels just down the road from the original Land Rover factory in Solihull. I’ve also managed to find original military-spec lights to go with the original ‘bumperettes’ and crossmember. As I mentioned, I’ve been amazed at the wealth of advice the eBay sellers have had to offer. I’m not just buying pieces of equipment – I’m gaining expertise, and that’s invaluable.

A rather unwelcome surprise was finding a massive oil leak from the sump after cleaning off old mud and grime. I also later found major corrosion in both footwells that I only discovered after stripping back paint from the bulkhead. Both ‘wells needed replacing – something I hadn’t originally planned for. Although in many ways that’s to be expected from a 53-year-old ex-military Land Rover.

Would you restore another Land Rover / enjoyed the process?

Yes - it’s been an incredibly fulfilling experience.

What does your typical week on the project look like?

To keep on schedule I’ve set myself weekly targets. I’ve had to put in more than three times the number of hours I expected already, and I’m defiantly feeling the pressure in these final few weeks. With 15 hour days on the project, tiredness is defiantly taking its toll but I’m confident I’ll finish it in time.

Do you have any tips for anyone else looking to restore a Series 2A?

Yes – ask for advice! Through this whole project I’ve managed to get loads of advice through sellers on eBay and the LR community.

Dan's Series 2A 'Bertha':

Follow the restorers’ journeys here: http://www.ebay.co.uk/carchallenge

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