Coyote; aka my 96 D1 5 speed build thread


Mostly a lurker here but seem to be posting more and that's prompted a desire to start a build thread for my current Disco.
Coyote Spring Break 15_2.jpg
Basic details:
1996 Discovery 1
80,XXX miles (just went past 80k!)
5 speed
2" lift & 235/85/16 BFG ATs
LR HD coils + isolators + 1/2" spacer in the back​
Terrafirma big bore + 2 shocks​
4.11 gears; 4pin HD dif up front/TT rear
TW DC front DS, GBR HD rear (u to u, roto left with the stock dif)
Castor corrected swivels
Difs sewer capped
Front steering skid, HD drag link (Defender style damper relocation), RT tie rod, RW pinion guard, RT trailing arms, fuel tank skid
Custom built front bumper
Custom rock sliders/sill guards
Superwinch EP9.0
SD roof rack w/4 Hella Black Magics, work lamp, reverse lamps, chicken coop flooring
On board air & 15# Powertank
Yaesu 7900 2m/6m
Cobra 76WSXT
Garmin Montana 650T

I'm probably forgetting stuff with that so I'll edit it as needed. A pic of the before and after-which will potentially spark debate as other threads have about regarding how much is too much and such (more on that as this goes on).
View attachment 70767
I'll close this opener with a few thoughts:
-Several threads on here have been inspiration so if there is imitation on my truck please consider it in the spirit of the sincerest form of flattery.
-Most of the modifications have been the product of experience & research, this being my 3rd Disco, all with the realization that as has often been stated on here any modification to a vehicle is ultimately the beginning of a series of compromises that trade attributes relative value against each other.

This truck's endstate was to have something that could be daily driven comfortably (and while it is a Rover, ahem, reliably) while also providing a platform for moderate wheeling. Related to that there was an acknowledgement that the truck would spend 99% of its life, sadly, on highway-much like this weekend driving 3 hours to and from WVa to do a bit of wheeling and other stuff with a friend. That is coupled with the desire to use the vehicle for things like getting to the slopes in the winter, or carrying everything to the beach or the mountains, etc is driving how it comes together.

Learning a lot, as always, along the way and figured posting would at least carry on more discussion about the merits of various modifications.
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good stuff and good luck. Couple questions for ya...

1. how did you attach the expanded metal to the SD rack? (expanded alum. or steel)

2. Who built the sill sliders and do they have a hi-lift point in them?

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Some background for potential discussions.
First Disco:
94 5 speed, 170 k on the clock at demise, total trail truck. Ended life with 3" lift, SG 3 link, 255/85's, etc. Went away b/c the engine died as I was in the process of moving back to Camp Lejeune to start the fun we know as Operation Iraqi Freedom deployment(s). Thus I had no time or mental bandwidth to troubleshoot the 3.9's issue; she got sold and I was roverless from 04-06; not that I was in the country.
Second truck
98 Auto, 160k on the clock at final demise. The original Coyote, purchased after coming out of the OIF rotations as a way to get back to 'normal' life. Ended up with a 4.6L in her after the 4.0 slipped a liner. Ultimately this truck died in late 09 after what was probably lubrication issues in the top end resulted in valve/cam/etc issues. I was heading back to the fleet and she ended up eventually at Roverlab for diagnosis thanks to the GF and some good friends hauling her up there while I was in Afghanistan. Cost benefit of replacement of the engine vs the current truck coupled with the state of the rest of this truck resulted in the 96 being purchased and the 98 being parted

Some thoughts I had as I came out of those two trucks:
-Trail trucks are great, when you spend a lot of time on the trail. I spend too much time, sadly, doing other things and need more utility and prefer more functionality/comfort.
-The 2nd truck, with the RTE all the way around and everything else, was HEAVY! The 4.6 made up for it everywhere (except in fuel consumption) but the weight contributed to stress on the vehicle offroad. That vehicle in particular did a lot of time wheeling as MAR 09 was being built, which was why I choose to cut losses and switch to a truck that was cleaner, far less mileage, etc.

Some of the stuff from the 2nd truck is carrying over into the new one, albeit with modification and enhancement, such as the rear door/rear cargo area utilization. Here's what the old stuff looked like:
Rear door 2 (Small).JPGRear Storage1 (Small).JPG
I'll post up what the new areas look like as time goes on, the new truck is challenged by having (and retaining) the rear A/C. The rear door is being modified for further utility as well.



good stuff and good luck. Couple questions for ya...

1. how did you attach the expanded metal to the SD rack? (expanded alum. or steel)

2. Who built the sill sliders and do they have a hi-lift point in them?
The flooring is the chicken coop floor sold by places like Farmtek
Which works really well and is economical. It's attached via bolts (fender washers running to fixtures that hold conduit to walls, the fender washers hold the flooring and the fixtures wrap around the roof rack's tubing.)

The previous owner did a lot of the work that I inherited and he deserves the credit for it. The bumper and the sliders are a work of art in terms of being protective without being overly heavy-and still maintaining good lines. I wouldn't use them as a HD application mind you-but this time through I don't see myself thrashing this truck that way either. He also did the OBA setup, sewer capped the difs, castor corrected the balls, along with being generally meticulous about maintenance which has made this project a lot of fun without the usual grumblings.


First off = Semper Fi and glad that you are safely here with us to enjoy this ridiculous hobby :)

Secondly, nice rover! I am quite jealous of your 5 spd and the LOW mileage. I am located 3 hours west of Camp Lejeune (at least it was 3 hours when I left there in 1989... and I HAVE NOT been back!), so if you are there and looking for someone towheel with, just let me know. Uwharrie is but 30 minutes from the house.

Thanks for watching out for all of us and I look forward to sharing the trail.

USMC 0311 1985-89


Been meaning to update this for awhile
Not sure I hit you back here or on the URE thread (which is kicking my *** b/c I can't get down there next weekend). Semper Fi back at ya; and I hear you about Camp Lejeune. I left there this summer after my 3rd posting there and I really hope I don't go for a 4th opportunity. Its sad when I think of Northern Va (and the traffic) as a million times better than down there.

On to things that I'd meant to post up at various times. The OBA setup the PO installed is very slick:
The tank is tucked to the side of the frame rail (with a skid plate protecting it). I've found it good for tires but once I settle on where the powertank is going I'll retain that for tools and redundancy. Note with the skid plate/tank on the frame rail; removing trailing arms is a bit of PITA...

Need to grab some shots of the HAM install & such, but will start a new post with more recent shots of her at MAR and such.


Figured I'd post some shots from MAR; which was essentially the target for this summer's build.
Overall the truck functioned very well. Things that I know I need to fix:
-removing front sway bar & the existing spring/shock setup necessitates front lower retention, otherwise the spring can (sometimes does) unseat and sit partially seated-binding a bit.
-ATs work well on the road and around town but as I've learned again (for like the 3rd time), I may as well get a set of MTs to put on the steelies and throw the ATs on a set of DD alloys. The right shoes make all the difference.

Otherwise it's been nothing but fun, though as is often discussed wheeling a 5 speed is a lot different than the normal ZF auto; it takes some getting used to that's for sure.

In the 'new to me 6.2L diesel...' thread I posted some shots of the transplanted hood with louvers/hood pins, that can go away in place of the regular hood fairly easily but the blackout is nice when the roof rack lights are on.

This fall there is a lot of minor projects and maintenance to do, I'll also try to get up posts on the install/utilization of the VHF (Yaesu FT 7900), GPS (Garmin Montana 650T), and such.


Ray, I'm going to enjoy following your build! I know it will help with some ideas that I would like to implement on my Disco. Good find on the truck, I really do like the front bumper and sliders. Wish I could wind the clock back to 80,000 on mine...


Got a few moments during Thanksgiving to both use the vehicle as intended as well as take some pics to update this thread (priority on using the vehicle, though the update is long overdue I suppose).

Enjoying the Outer Banks:
I made a Saudi style grill of sorts over the past few weeks just to open the front end up a bit and change the appearance slightly. It's not perfect but it works for the application, especially since the winch & bumper drive a lot of factors.
Next couple of posts I'll cover some of the internal nav/communications that I went with as the build progressed


Garmin 650T

My previous truck had a touchscreen tablet on the dash in a RAM mount; worked great for how it was utilized (navigation, mapping, limited onboard computing). This time through I wanted something smaller and a bit more user friendly for on road navigation. Looking at the demise of the 276C and the rest of that class of GPS's as Garmin appears to have let them go into obsolescence created a dilemma.

I ended up shelling out the cash for the Garmin 650T and while I'd say that I haven't really used it to potential, I'm pretty happy with it. A few pics of its placement (same RAM ball mount was moved into this truck and then the AMPS rugged mount is utilized to provide hardwired power. No sound, I could figure that out I suppose but had enough going on with the stereo via the aux input for ipod and Sirius (in the lower left of the pic)

The Garmin's screen is easy to read, manipulation for most action right now is via the Nuvi auto style interface but I'll come back with some more pics of the topo functions. Overall I'd say it cost a lot for what I got, but I like the idea of moving it to my bike or being able to pop it out and use it as a large handheld + geotag capable camera. The multipower options (hardwire 12v, internal lithium or AA battery pack) also appealed to me.
Tough to read the iphone pic, but I do love it when I'm being told I'm driving on an unpaved road (or in this case, a beach)


Yaesu 7900R

So something I installed that proves that hope springs eternal is the Yaesu 7900R (spent a few weeks studying after I got back from deployment to take the test to earn KK4DPX). I say hope springs eternal since I've had no call to use it here on the East Coast, at least not yet. Most trails done up until now are with folks that are on CB or FRS radios...but the desire to go out West is alive and well. The side benefits of the 2m/70cm for other circumstances notwithstanding, overall my desire was to get something into the truck that would be unobtrusive and be a foundation for communications down the road.

The install, via the help of a friend, went in where the front light normally goes. The microphone lies in the storage area on the passenger side there (the downside to the Yaesu face sep kit is that it takes the mic with it, I'd rather have had the mic come out from the center console but maybe in time I'll get around to rewiring.
You can also see the switch for the Diamond antenna K9000 motorized mount; I need to do a better job with a dremel recessing that but it works for now and functions well enough. The motorized mount is awesome for the convenience, an unnecessary expense for many but I was on a shopping spree and figured why not.

Antenna being used is the Diamond NR7700HB.

All told I'm happy with the setup and I'm glad I got it all in place, this winter one of my goals is to play with it all more and get more comfortable with US civilian amateur radio infrastructure as most of my experience now is with the DoD VHF/HF/UHF/UHF(SAT) equipment.


Recommended books for Overlanding


Grill was just a spare grill with the plastic dremeled out, mesh was from Home Depot (for my application the stuff that goes over a gutter was the right length/width). I originally tried to just epoxy it into place but that was not working well. Ultimately I used small bolts with fender washers to hold it in place. The bottom has rubber tubing (vacuum tubing from the local parts store) that was split and then glued to the bottom of the mesh so that handling the winch clutch or line doesn't risk cutting your hand.

I got a badge from the back of the D1 that I'll probably put on at some point.