SERIES 1 VS THE REST By Louis Powell
The more I have to do with Landies, the more I realize they have deteriorated in quality, strength and sheer practicality over the years and it is arguable how well the 110 with its coil spring suspension compares with a Series One in the arduous off-road conditions under which the Land Rover was designed to operate.
I have compiled a list of some of the items and conditions that make a Series One a vehicle worth owning and preserving as original. Not all of these factors are unique to Series One’s as some were carried over into Series 11 and series 11A production, but by the time the 110 came into being, they were history.
The doors are shallower and much easier to remove.
Both the doors and door top frames are galvanized.
The channeling in the door tops for the sliding glass is galvanized and can be serviced.
There is better visibility through the windscreen due to the fact that it is almost upright and is wider at the top than later vehicles.
The cab roof is of a much stronger design, in fact a spare wheel can be carried on the roof.
The cab/canopy is fixed to the windscreen by two bolts only, making it easier to remove / replace.
The three warning lights on the fascia have glass lenses and brass surrounds.
The rims surrounding the speedo and fuel gauge / ammeter are brass
The starter solenoid is mechanically operated.
The fenders are lower and therefore afford better visibility in the bush.
The headlamps are better protected.
The fully mechanical clutch linkage rarely gives problems even when neglected.
The tailgate hinges and fastening system are far more robust.
There are less cross members and outriggers on the Series One 107/109 chassis as the springs are mounted directly on the main side frames of the chassis as well as with the SWB, making the chassis much lighter.
All five doors on the 107 station wagon have removable door tops.
The prop shafts on the series One have smaller universal joints, which were designed for the very short rear prop shaft on the 80/86, which operates at a steep angle. For this reason the smaller universal joints tend to last longer.
The Series One gearbox has a dip stick and fillers on top on the gearbox and transfer case making it possible to maintain oil levels from inside the vehicle.
The adjusting system on “11” rear brakes on Series One is far better.
The exhaust system routing is much better on the Series One.
Incidentally just in case you think the 110 has it all, not only did the first Landies have constant velocity (CV) joints in the front axle, galvanized chassis and permanent four wheel drive, there was also a station wagon available that had a plush interior, one piece windscreen wipers and wind up windows.
So lets get out there and save some more Series One’s.
Land Rover Maths 4 x 4 = 1 ( Series)
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