Stirling

Let us introduce you to ‘Stirling’. We have given our Land Rover a name because it seems that is the ‘law’ if you are Overlanding. After much debate we settled on Stirling because of it’s silver colour, the hope that it will do a ‘sterling’ job of looking after us and because there was a great British driver called Stirling Moss (I know – last one’s a bit tenuous!).

We purchased Stirling in May 2018. It is a 110 2.2TDi XS Utility model and is one of the last off the production line. Land Rover stopped manufacturing Defenders in 2016 and although we didn’t acquire the vehicle until earlier this year it had only got 12 miles on the clock – it was just like new.

This is how it looked when we bought it!

It was originally purchased for our proposed move from Suffolk to the Highlands of Scotland but once the idea of an overland trip was firmly in our minds the Land Rover seemed to be the perfect vehicle for the occassion.

We set about listing all the modifications that would be necessary to allow Stirling to transport us to remote regions of the world and yet remain our home from home.

We then had to decide which of the modifications we would undertake ourselves and which would require us to use the specialist services of 4×4 outfitters.

After many hours of research on available products and companies, and the pros and cons of each one, we felt we were ready to start spending money …gulp!

Boxes started to arrive containing items such as steering arm guards, diff guards, chequer plate bonnet protectors, rock sliders, snow cowls and raised air intakes, all things we had never even heard of a few weeks ago.

We arranged for larger items such as roof racks, pop up tent and awning to be delivered directly to the 4×4 outfitters we had chosen.

With some time available before the vehicle was due to be converted Paul started to carry out some of the modifications and his first task was to install the black chequer plate protector to the bonnet and wing tops. It was quite a surreal experience drilling holes into a perfectly good vehicle and much time was spent getting the alignment correct.

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Chrissie testing out the newly installed chequer plate on the bonnet and wing tops

The chequer plate was installed to allow us to stand on the bonnet as we will need to do this to gain access to the roof top box once it is installed on the new roof rack.

In November 2018 Stirling was taken for a make-over (a full list of the vehicle modifications is shown at the bottom of this page for those who may be interested).

Stirling’s been decapitated!
After conversion but before the addition of graphics

Make-Over Modifications

Alu-Cab Icarus Pop-Up roof tent

Alu-Cab Shadow Awning

Awning LED Work lights (when camping)

Under vehicle LED lights (when camping)

Solar panels and control system

Rear side storage locker

66 litre auxiliary stainless steel fuel tank & associated  pump, gauge etc.

56 litre stainless steel water tank  including pump, filter, hoses, gauge etc.

External side storage lockers

Dual Battery System & all wiring inc solar power & mains hook up

Heater & Heater Locker

Electrical System – 240v, 12v and USB sockets, lights and switches, fuses etc.

Interior Layout and Storage System

Small Drawer System & Carcasses

Rear door drop down table

Spray paint headlight surrounds black (to match new Front Grille)

Front Runner Roof Rack

Rail Guard for roof rack

Rock/Tree sliders

Car Radio – double din (with Apple Play)

Reversing camera to connect to new radio

Modifications to dash facia (to accommodate above radio)

Door opening modifications – to allow easy access to drawers and fridge

Security Bonnet Hinges

Bonnet & Wing Chequer Plate

Snow Cowl

Front Lamp Guards

Rear Lamp Guards

LED Lights (side lights, indicators, brake lights, fog and reversing lights)

LED Headlights with day running lights

Heavy Duty Spare Tyre mounting bracket

Front Grille

Steering Arm Guard

Front & Rear Diff guards

Large Rear Drawer

SnoMaster Fridge & Fridge Runners

Raised Air Intake (Snorkel)

Sound Insulation

Roof top storage box

In addition to the above the following modifications were also made;

Window Security Tinting

Waxoyl rust protection to underbody

Suspension Improvements