'96 L400 Delica build and adventure thread!


Expedition Leader
Nice build. I especially like how us used Unistrut and L brackets to mount it to the wheel wells. Out of curiosity does the sleeping platform bend under load? I may upgrade to a 3/4" thick plywood versus the 1/2" ply I have now and do away with the 1x2" cross member & the 3" ID pvc tubes I'm using to support the platform.


Nice build. I especially like how us used Unistrut and L brackets to mount it to the wheel wells. Out of curiosity does the sleeping platform bend under load? I may upgrade to a 3/4" thick plywood versus the 1/2" ply I have now and do away with the 1x2" cross member & the 3" ID pvc tubes I'm using to support the platform.
Thanks!! I have another piece of 'strut at the front as a cross brace to add some support while "sleeping" :ylsmoke: I sit on the edge sometimes and eat lunch or whatnot and there's not much flex at all. Without seeing your platform, I would say the 3/4" is more than adequate. Especially if you add a single brace somewhere. My sleeping platform bolts to the front brace. I'll try and snap a pic this week to show you what I mean. If you're familiar with unistrut, you'll know that you can build pretty much anything with it. Big boys meccano.


Thanks for the feedback guys! Now that winter is slowly releasing its ugly grip on Ontario I can get some more work done. On the list - Check if my CV's are shot, front brakes, lower ball joints, one tie rod, might as well do the bearings while I do the discs, pull the airbags from the rear coils and install proper lift blocks, sell my roof rack and get regular bars, maybe upgrade the stereo a bit. Oh, and raise the sleeping platform so I can fit more underneath it. Unfortunately my motorcycle also needs about $500 worth of work, so we'll see which comes first this year.


Well, it was finally nice out today and got myself off my *** and got some work done! The AirLift bags I had in the rear coils gave up the ghost sometime over the winter and I was sick of having to use them for a lift so I went to my local metal supermarket and got some spacers made up! 6" bar stock and then to the machine shop to get them drilled out.

(My hand is under there somewhere.)

So here's the Before

You can see how much sag there is. Wasn't planning on going for that trophy truck look, but, if the shoe fits!

Beginning of the fun process.

You can see how well the rubber held up over the winter, just lovely.
So springs are out, now to get the bags out. I can attest that they are extremely tough and durable, what failed was not these beasts. I had to get them out of the coil by prying them up with a screwdriver space by space.

Spacers installed!

Compress the new springs to re install.

-Now, I didn't take pictures of the whole process because it was pretty dangerous and not something I want to be responsible for others doing. Needless to say that my coil compression tools weren't enough to make them as small as they needed to be in one go. It was a very precarious slightly frightening!


Repeat for other side!

The condition of the AirLift bags after one year.

After! (Not the best pic, but you can kind of see the difference.)

For anyone considering the AirLift system, I can say that make sure you have routed the lines in a place that they definitely will not be pinched. On the left side the hose ended up getting pinched between the rubber spacer and the bag. On the right side the hose pulled right off the bag. After one winter the metal spring clips that hold the tubing onto the bags rusted and fell apart. If I put them back in one day I will use some sort of pinch clamp. The rubber degrading like that is pretty sad though. I'm wondering if the airbags let go so the rubber just bounced around but you can clearly see where the bolts made a deep impression and certainly didn't help things.

Now that it's finally sitting almost as it should, my headlights will point in the right direction! I wish I had've got my spacers a little bigger though, oh well, next time!

Also, my horn stopped working. After checking the fuse and seeing that it was fine I decided to have a look at the horns themselves.
This one is in better shape than the other, which doesn't have any wiring connected to it at all anymore. Excuse to upgrade I think!!


I'm assuming that corrosion is due to the use of road salt?

I'm curious about the front bull bar... did you fit that or was it on it when you purchased? What model is it?

Edit: Looks like the JAOS bull bar 3R PAJERO http://jaos.com/products_catalog/detail.php?products_id=277

I got excited thinking it was available in Australia, stupid kangaroo on it :)

Hello! Sorry for the delay, I've been spending time on my SV instead of the van this summer. Only one toy at a time!

Yes, that corrosion is from the road salt, even though it does get oil sprayed every year. The bull bar was on it when it came over. One day, I would love to sell it and get a custom one built, buuuuuut I can't see that happening any time soon!


So I did manage to get new horns on, nothing fancy but at least they work!

Roof rack has been removed for some upgrades and refitting. While it's off I can bed-line the roof, having the rack on there has cause the wind to chew through the paint. Also, with no rack I'm saving a noticeable amount on fuel. Hopefully my new rack won't inhibit my milage.

I also finally got my hands on an OEM 3 gauge pod that goes on the dash on the higher trimmed models. I will remove the three gauges and install an EGT, boost and oil pressure gauge. Hopefully I'll get that done before winter hits!

Once I have some more progress on these projects, pictures will follow!


JDM Journeys
EGT is probably the most important thing to monitor on these small diesels. I found it like a distant early warning system for engine overheating. The 4m40 just continues to pull up long hills to its destruction if you let it. The EGT lets you know when to back off, turn off overdrive and cool things down a bit. I also put an extra washer nozzle in my intercooler duct. Switched it from the left windshield washer nozzle line on dry days. It's amazing what a couple shots of finely misted washer fluid does to lower your EGTs when it mists your intercooler on a warm day.

Great Deli! Blue is the best!

Did you go onto the island, or just Labrador?


My van didn't come with that gauge pod but all the wiring was there so I tapped into the harness on the pod so I could use the factory connector still. Kept it nice and clean and easy!

A couple weeks ago we went to upper NY camping for a couple nights. I'm ashamed to say that it was the only time we got out this year! I was down there on my motorcycle for the first time about a month ago and loved it. I've spent most of my free time riding instead of camping this year.

Coming up on the list before winter, new glow plugs, a $1000 rust repair around the windshield and possibly new CV joints. Yay!

I also took the roof rack off and got some new legs fabled up for it. I need to get them welded still but I'll try and snap some pics of that stuff this week, my design will allow me to install removable cross bars to haul a canoe!


SCORED on Kijiji!!!!
IMG_7554 by TheMacrobius, on Flickr

Grabbed this stuff from a guy who builds custom off-road trailers in his spare time. Picked up the fridge, slider, and both stoves for less than half what it would be new. Fridge is slightly used, everything else is brand new!!! Woohoo!!!