300 tdi disco build

35xj

Adventurer
72772215056__1CB15BBA-8F3C-44F7-A40F-743E7800C8A1.jpeg72772215056__1CB15BBA-8F3C-44F7-A40F-743E7800C8A1.jpeginformation on this swap has been a bit hard to find, so I thought I’d do a bit of a write up as I progress on it.
Always wanted a 300/r 380 disco 1. Last year I pulled a great running 300 out of my 130 and dropped in an LS3. I did the work in california and drove the 130 home, leaving the drivetrain out there. Luckily I also had a couple of cars sitting out there. Had my buddy drop the drivetrain into a 110 I had sitting out there, and shipped it and my rust free 500 dollar disco home to NC
72772215056__1CB15BBA-8F3C-44F7-A40F-743E7800C8A1.jpeg
 

35xj

Adventurer
Job 1. Yank the drivetrain out of the 110. The r380 in the 130 died on the trip to sacramento ( we drove from NC through mainland Mexico, over to Baja and up to Sacramento for a month. Lost 5th and reverse in la Paz. Made for a long drive to sac)
Ashcroft sent me a new disco r380 with the taller 5th to help offset the 1:4 t case.
1711896011626.jpeg

and yes. I have a land rover problem 1711896055271.jpeg
 

35xj

Adventurer
Next step. Pedals. Ended up ordering a RHD pedal box from the UK. In my mind, it would just drop right in. And it did not!
So.…. Turns out the 2 pedal setup has most of the mounts required to run the 3rd pedal. Requires a bit of fab though. Clutch and brake have to be cut and bent to clear the kick panel and put the pedals in the right place. The final productIMG_9947.jpegIMG_9891.png
 

Attachments

  • IMG_9875.jpeg
    4.8 MB · Views: 4
  • IMG_9869.jpeg
    6.7 MB · Views: 2

35xj

Adventurer
next up. fuel bits. the 300 uses a block mounted lift pump, the v-8 used an in tank mounted electric fuel pump. the lift pump will not duck fuel through the in tank pump, and the v8 pump provides too much pressure.

easy enough. pull the stock pump apparatus and remove the pump replace pump with fuel line hose, and drop it back in. this enables the factory fuel gauge to still work.
v8 uses a frame mounted fuel filter. pulled it out and drilled it out as well.
filler neck. too small for diesel nozzle. pulled it out and took a 1” hole saw to it. cleaned it up with a die grinder. and reassemble.
fuel system done….,IMG_0074.jpegIMG_0072.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0060.jpeg
    6.8 MB · Views: 2

35xj

Adventurer
new rear main seal installed, and brandy new r380! bolted it all up with the 1:4 case. man. that’s a long heavy setup to try to get up over the grill and down into place solo.
ended up with the cherry picker and ratchet straps. (including a 3” strap over a shop rafter to the t case).

using the us spec r 380 crossmember (same as defender) i got the t case position sorted out, essentially locating the drivetrain. next up was motor mounts.

the biggest issue is setting the height of the motor. luckily i have a friend with a camel trophy disco in town, so a bunch of measurements were pulled.
using the takeout defender allisport radiator/intercooler/shroud turned out to be pretty simple. need to weld some new 1” kegs onto the bottom of the rad to compensate for the height difference and had to weld up some new mounts for the disco style upper mounts. but it drops right into place.
with the rad and shroud set it was pretty easy to center up the fan in the shroud and weld in the motor mounts.
got the shifter area opened up and all the shifters mounted. going to need some sheet metal work to close this back in a bit.
new clutch slave and master ordered, then i’ll have my local hydraulics shop build a braided steel clutch line next week.
progress.IMG_0005.jpegIMG_0037.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0015.jpeg
    5.7 MB · Views: 4
  • IMG_9971.jpeg
    3.6 MB · Views: 2

35xj

Adventurer
Next up is wiring. One of the things I truly suck at! Scouring the internet gave me a few ideas on what I needed to keep from the v8 harness, pondering the minuscule harness on my tdi defender, and the help of a friend who’s gone the swap already, I began.
The V8 engine harness is massive, all the injectors, sensors, emissions, and sending devices are pretty overwhelming at first.
The reality is, the tdi needs about 4 wires to run, fuel solenoid, ignition and starter being the primary things. These were fairly easy to pull from the harness, and a few ignition wires were repurposed. Factory temp sensor, oil pressure sensor, and tach sendor was reused, which should give me full gauges in the truck.
On the d1 the elm is under the hood, and all major wiring connections too, essentially unplug the Ecuador, throw it away, label the wires required, and start hacking away! Once the loom has been paired down , extend what’s needed to its new spot, route everything cleanly, wrap everything in wire loom.
I have not yet figured the wiring for the A/C. That will come later
The other harness is the tranny. You need reverse lights, xyz switch, and VSS for the speedo, The xyz switch needs to,be bypassed to power up the starter circuit. Several methods have been done, i chose to ground the black red wire in the passenger kick panel. It works!IMG_0077.jpeg73276764839__849AA9A7-A7DA-4054-885C-28C9A63C0A4A.jpegIMG_0079.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0063.jpeg
    6.9 MB · Views: 2
  • IMG_0134.jpeg
    5.2 MB · Views: 3

gatorgrizz27

Well-known member
Nice! This place has been lacking any actual “builds/restos” lately.

I’m about to do the same, I have a 95 RRC LWB and found a 300 tdi/r380/1.4 LT230 drivetrain for it.

I’m trying to take the “easy” route and went with motor mounts from Defenders Northwest. https://www.defendersnorthwest.com/products/300tdi-engine-mount-weld-in-chassis-kit

I also sourced a transmission crossmember from a 300 tdi Disco, the pedal box which I planned on stealing parts from as the Range Rover’s have a different firewall cutout, and a clutch master.

I’ll be attempting to use the Defender trans instead of a Disco one, I was under the impression the the shift turret was easily swapped but I’ve since learned that’s not the case.

It looks like new exhaust systems are readily available and affordable on eBay.uk, what are your plans as far as tuning?

I have my drivetrain separated to replace seals, etc, and am hoping to get the RRC towed over into the shop this week to pull the 4.2 out.
 

35xj

Adventurer
yeah. with the effort involved. a new ashcroft 380 with tall 5th was easily worth it in my head. let me know if you have any questions. i drove mine about 2 miles today!!!!!
 
Last edited:

35xj

Adventurer
she’s a driver! got the holes in the tranny tunnel sealed up, built an intake from amazon/exhaust shop. Had my fiancée come help bleed the brakes and clutch. and she runs!

never trusted the electrics in these things, so i swapped a set of manual seats i had laying around over, swapped the center console out to get rid of the seat switches, swapped door panels to get rid of the wood grain, and peeled it all off the dash. my 110 and 130 are all straight piped, so i had the exhaust shop run a 2.5” pipe. sounds pretty good so far egt gauge is run, trying to figure out where to put it in the truck still factory gauges seem to be working for the most part tach and fuel at least it hasn’t run enough yet to check tempinstalled the terrafirma hd steering kit i had sitting around need to put all new bushings in the front end still but. she’s getting close!IMG_0185.jpegIMG_0078.jpeg
 

Attachments

  • IMG_0094.jpeg
    3.5 MB · Views: 4
  • IMG_0189.jpeg
    5.1 MB · Views: 2
  • IMG_0154.jpeg
    3.1 MB · Views: 2

Forum statistics

Threads
186,460
Messages
2,886,325
Members
226,446
Latest member
M2C_PLUS
Top