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1997 ECR Beach Runner Defender 110 #1
Off Road Upgrades and Full Color Change
Here is a Rover that is a favorite of ours. It is the first 4 door soft top 110 that we created and called the "Beach Runner". Its been living on Nantucket for the last few years and doing its job well, but the owner decided he wanted a new toy, so BR110 #1 was recently sold to a new owner. The new owner then sent the 110 to ECR so that it can become "personalized" to the his tastes. That means a slightly more off road edge to the 110 and a fresh look. We will be adding ARB lockers front and rear, lots of off road protection items, a rear winch, off road lights, gas can racks and much more... and one big change... we'll be stripping the entire truck down and giving it a full color change paint job in Eastnor Green with galvanized trim highlights!
So as with all projects, things get worse before they get better, so we have started to tear apart BR110 #1 so that we can remove all the panels from the galvanized frame and get them stripped, epoxy primed and painted in the new owners color choice.
A short time later the body of the truck has been stripped off and we are left with the rolling chassis. This is a great time to install the ARB lockers front and rear and get all the rolling gear ready and serviced.
When we say color change, we mean it. That means that all the yellow goes away and becomes green. Here you can see the bulkhead to the truck has been made ready to go to our paint dept. for dunking in primer (to prevent rust) and then prep and new coats of epoxy primer and Eastnor Green paint. If we do a color change it will look like it came from the factory in the new color. We do not just tape things off so that when you open the doors or hood that you would see yellow.
This image shows the bulkhead after the primer and paint process. The new Eastnor Green looks great and with some new coats of epoxy primers this bulkhead will not have any rust issues any time soon.
Here you can see the bulkhead has been installed onto the already built rolling chassis and we have started to install and hook up all the systems. The nice thing about this project is that all the brake lines and such were already stainless steel, so they call can just be re-installed as they are long lasting ECR parts that we installed a few years ago.
You will also notice the new steel Defender 130 wheels and Swamper SSR tires that have been installed. These, along with the new ARB air lockers, will give the 110 a much better edge when hitting the trail.
Here you can see BR110 #1 coming along nicely. The body panels are going on and the door gaps and body lines are being set and the galvanized trim and safari cage are being installed. The safari cage and the door top parts that were previous painted have now been stripped and zinc and powder coated in black for a better, longer lasting finish.
With the majority of the paint color change work done we have sent the freshly painted parts out to get Rhino-Lined, and now that those parts are back we have started to install those parts, with all stainless steel fasteners for a long life to the fasteners and easier repairs down the road.
At the rear of the BR110 we have installed the customers desired twin work/reverse lamps and we have run all the wiring for the upcoming rear Warn 9000 winch that will be mounted in our custom rear step/ winch mount.
Here you can see the 110 body is nearly complete. The doors are going on and now it is time to turn our attention to the hundreds of feet of cable and wire we have to sling through the truck. This truck will be getting everything from a DVD based Navigation system to WWII style aircraft gauges in the dash. All that custom work takes a ton of time, but it is what we are good at and once done, the truck will function correctly and be easy to service in the future.
The front clip is also coming together and the truck is back up and running. Once the systems have been fully tested we will start to install the off road goodies like a hood mounted spare, shovel, axe, Hi-Lift mount and much more.
Here you can see the ECR fabricated rear winch set up has been installed and wired up. This BR110 will have 9000 pound winches front and rear and that should make it able to recovery just about anything, including itself, from just about any situation.
This image shows some of the freshly zinc and powder coated pieces going into place. The front bumper has been re-worked in order to hold a Hi-Lift jack and the upper safari cage portion has been updated, pre-runner style.
Here you can see the SG tire carrier has been modified with our custom gas can holder and the entire set up has been installed on the 110. The rear tailgate hinges have also been upgraded to help handle the weight of the new Super Swamper SSR tire and 10 gallons of fuel.
Now that the back of the truck is together it is time to get the remaining body parts on. The door tops have been stripped down, powder coated and re-assembled in order to stand up the the off road use the truck will see and handle the brush scratches that happen when off roading, and the newly painted doors have been lined up and installed.
This image shows the front of the truck a little further along. The winch is in and being tested, the ROX recovery points are on and the Hi-Lift has been set up in its new home.
There has to be a couple miles of additional wiring in this truck with everything from a DVD based Navigation system to 4 Hella driving lights, Twin rear lamps and satellite radio, but everything is getting installed and the wiring is all being run for ease of future service and fault finding if need be. The image above shows the 4 Hella lamps installed on the front safari cage hoop and these will help turn night into day on the trail at night.
Next step for the BR110, now turned off road 110, is to drop in the new springs to get the truck up out of the weeds for off road use and to finish the dash and GPS/ audio system and finish the fabrication of the new ECR ROX sliders.
This image shows the BR110 a little further along with its new suspension springs installed to give it a mild lift. The ROX sliders have been installed as well, along with the hood mounted spare tire. At this stage everything is up and running, so while the final details get installed all the systems are being road tested to make sure there are no problems when the Defender reaches its new home in CO.
Here you can see the ROX sliders better and you can also see the folding side steps that we have added to make getting in and out easier for the owner and his guests. If the Rover is going to head out for some rough terrain the side steps can be unbolted in short order.
As you have likely figured out by now, BR110 #1 is owned by the same customer who owns BR110 #3, and he wants the trucks to be fraternal twins. So other than color and some very minor differences #1 and #3 are now the same. We have added the same Alpine DVD based touch screen navigation system and the old school aircraft gauges, that are all fully functional, to BR110 #1 so that it matches #3. All the switch gear and controls are the same as well so that everything is run in the same matter, not matter which cool ride you pick.
Here you can see the shovel mount and limb risers have been installed. Unlike most limb risers we see that look like they came from Home Depot, ours are made to our specifications form high quality stainless steel parts by the local ship yard so they will not rust, bend or break.
Out back the gas cans have been painted to match the truck and installed securely for the trail. With 6 tires and 10 extra gallons of fuel and 2 winches this BR110 is now ready for the high country and more.
This image shows the completed BR110 project now ready to go. The truck has gone through a near complete rebuild and has every trick in the book... and then some. It boasts everything from front and rear winches to ARB lockers front and rear, dual spares and dual batteries, lots of ECR ROX off road protection items and a great Alpine sound system with touch screen Navigation, not to mention a full and complete color change to Eastnor Green. It will now head out to Colorado to join up with BR110 #3 that is already there pulling duty as the off roader of choice on the customers property.
If you have needs for your Defender, from routine service to wild modifications, contact ECR. We'll be happy to make your Defender into a worlds class machine... just like this one.
East Coast Rover Co.