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  • new van owner

    afternoon all new to the club but very much old hat in the realms of British Leyland ownership , having owned various metros in the 80's and Ambassadors/Montego's/Rover 800's the maestro van back then was the obvious choice for me, was never the popular kid at school and had the cars in my teen/20's to boot, having friends (i know even had friends with my car choice) who owned the fords/Vauxhall's of the day one had the escort van that was done to RS turbo spec and i though yeah why not .. having a Montego turbo diesel that had just failed on corrosion the van got a face lift interior upgrade and turbo engine to boot (with car gearbox for better cruising speed) painted in a green colour that happens to have been used by skoda only a year or so later (fabia i think) was my work van for many years until sold in 99/00 (G60 OAG in case its out there)

    any way what brings me here- well at the weekend i acquired a white Maestro 700 L Diesel one of only 2 of this make model (not the city 700 diesel) according to the search that is registered and SORN - so back in the day every breakers yard had an abundance of Maestro's Montego's, probably its owner area however now .. not so common so where does everyone go for those items ??

    not looking to do a face lift with this one as i am more the original type of guy now although i am looking to give it a few easily reversed optional extras - the van in question had previously been named Millie the Maestro a rough old white bird .. (or is now) other than corporate a one owner van whom kept a lot of details for it (been some good reading for the last day or two) i'm looking to give it the ground up refresh that i think it deserves - and for this i will require parts (and a turbo engine would be useful as this will be a daily driver)

    for now i think i may have bored you enough .. but will look to meet up with fellow followers when the time come

    thanks all


  • #2
    Some parts are easier to find than others! Generally find them on here, or ebay. I've found that the vans go reasonably well with the non turbo engine if it is in good nick & set up right, I guess depends on the sort of roads you are using it on though...


    • #3
      it has become the daily driver to and from work, have used it for a week now (kind of a shake down use before the rebuild..) items i have on the list so far

      anti roll bar drop link ( i have secured one "old new stock item" but this actually comes without the bush ?? old unit has corroded and its just a matter of time before it lets go are the bushes still available ? what alternative is there)

      gear selection is vague .. no fifth gear as just can get it and reverse is .... there !! 1-4 are just fine well your can get them just not where they used to be !!

      its had the full service and those items all seem off the shelf enough so day to day running should be fine and as you say .. the NA diesel is not that bad, probably more pokey than i remember, although the toxic blue cloud that follows for a few hundred meters after cold start up!! brought back memories..


      • #4
        The drop link should come with the bush fitted, if you search on the forums there are a few threads about substitutes, usually involving vw drop links, I got some, but they look a bit weak to me. Simon King got some stainless/polybushed ones made, not the cheapest option, but should last indefinately, I got some of them too & they look good quality and up to the job, I'll see if he has any left.
        The gearchange problem could be that universal joint in the linkage is either worn or needs oil, it can be replaced with a steering shaft uj, or with an early freelander/any other pg1 gearbox Rover one. Other possibility is the bracket at the back end, this is the rear support and gearbox steady bush in polyurathane, if originals have rotted they may be useful...the list of compatible vehicles may also be useful if you decide to visit a scrapyard for parts . This picture and list of bits might be handy is worth checking that the roll pin (16 on pic) and its retaining clip (17) have not been replaced by a nut & bolt, I had one with a bolt in & gearchange was hideous as the bolt had worn, was a cheap fix too...
        good luck


        • #5
          Ahhhhh yes that rings a bell now !! the roll pin (should have known as i have a mini in the garage with engine out (not mine a welding job) and the old BL Ambassador also had the roll pin .. (yup had those as well (cheep insurance at 17 back in the day)) and yes i do have the bolt in the selector shaft joint .. however the "knuckle joint " also has plenty of play in it also..

          the back end bushes are also shot to sh-- and have ordered the link you sent (much appreciated)

          pin ordered from Rimmers (have an account there and didn't realise there was sharing in the underpinnings (other than the Mule)

          i will start with these items as i'm sure that will improve things, i have located the VW T25 bush that is used on the drop link so for now that will suffice but if you do speak with Simon i'd be interested in finding out where he got his bushes from (making them was the next step for me - 150 per pair !!! seem a little much from Ebay ..

          thank you for the assistance .. much appreciated

          PS obviously 25 years ago everything was available from the scrap yard .. have spoken with my two local ones and they haven't had BL/Rover for a few years now although i will go back and see if they have any freelanders .. may have to have a couple of picking days .. the missus will love that!! (no really she will she's old 80's 2 strokes and 08's vauxhaul's )


          • #6
            No problem, it is surprising how many bits were shared, freelander luggage space light is same as van interior lights, DAF LF uses the same oil filler cap and so on...annoying bit are the unique ones, as some are now very hard to get. As far as I know Simon got the links and bushes made up by his local engineering place, before getting them, I had thought about welding a bolt onto some tubing, bolting it in position on bottom arm, then check that bar was in centre of tube, split a washer & tape it over inside end, tape a funnel to outside end & fill it with ebay resin. I don't see why it wouldn't work, but might get a bit messy and unlikely to look as good as original.
            enjoy the scrap yard!