Take a look at the Defender accessories that I am making - Feedback appreciated.

Tiktaalik

Supporting Sponsor
Hi Everyone.

I'm in the process of taking pre-orders for a selection of Land Rover Defender Accessories that I am currently making. You can read more about the announcement on the Defender Source forum

They can also be seen on my website.

I would very much appreciate your thoughts and feedback on these products!

Best,

Carl

www.tiktaalik.com 2.jpgwww.tiktaalik.com 1.jpg
 

wuntenn

Adventurer
Hi Carl - Ok I'll bite.

The stuff looks very very nice, very well made too. But I can buy a lot of plastic radiator grilles for $550. Granted your alloy one will provide a bit of rock-bash protection, but large rocks flying in the front end may not be that common.

How about putting some thought to making multi-function stuff - things that are less show and more practical - which might be more appropriate to exped defenders.

SO make your alloy rad grill with louvres that swivel or slide shut so the front end can be quickly blocked off to ford an icy river, or to reduce ram air-cooling in sub-zero temps. Or make a grill that comes completely off and becomes a bbq grill - that provides a really useful second outdoors function.

Lots of little things that defenders could use are still waiting for some bright spark with the tools and imagination to get in about and produce, perhaps adding additional functionality to existing fitments through clever design, or inventing completely new and innovative stuff. Small things that are clever and sell a shedload with a high profit margin are as good as one-off high-price things that may only sell a few.

Good luck though - great to see people making a business out of their passion.
 

I Leak Oil

Expedition Leader
Expensive. Someone else(s) are already making replacement parts for less, or used are always available. Not sure the products really solve any specific problem.

You may want to show some pictures of the product on an actual vehicle so your audience can get a sense of what it looks like installed.

Lastly, I get free bottle openers all the time at trade shows etc., why pay $20 for yours? (Rhetorical question)
 

paulnb57

Observer
Overpriced and already available, stop wasting time and find something else, as I cant see you making money. Your webstie shows flat images of the products, no description of finish or anything, not for me Im afraid.....

Paul
 

Abu Buckwheat

warrior-scholar-shooter
They are very nice but Entreq, Nakatenaga and others do these. Britpart sells standard ones for about +/- $50.00. The specialty items I have to go overseas for are: Defender specific rear storage boxes - impossible to find in the USA. internal side storage boxes, custom window guards, replacement or new built dashboard adaptors for Puma-style dashes .... I mean Australia and South Africa have reams of neat stuff that can't be found in the states. Its a small audience but the profit margins just saving on shipping should be worth investigating. Get the Nakatanenga catalog if you want to seem some neat stuff.
 

Kgh

Let’s go already!
F#€k... Tough crowd!

Agree all, but would have been a little nicer..lol

Grill to BBQ Grill- wow, is cool idea,even with bugs! Slides up and out for use...
We had "L" channel grills on some of our combat vehicles, let air in, not rocks. Or whatever was moving at high velocity.
+1 Nakatenanagawhatevr. Really cool stuff, in line prices, and I travel to EU often enough I will soon get to their shop.
All the vendors we see here in US also have full product ranges of DIFFERENT STUFF in UK, AUS, and other markets (DOT, COMMERCE REASONS) See what they have. Also look at all the high dollar blingy LR "Bespoke" makers, maybe pimp them, not a bunch of cheapskates with 30 y/o English oil spreaders sitting in their garages. (I resemble that remark).

Above all, don't quit. Even when you are tired, and it sucks, and nothing work, just drive on. You will hit on something.
 

I Leak Oil

Expedition Leader
All honest opinions. Nothing mean or tough about them.
Sometimes blatant honesty is best, and can be the nicest way possible.
 

Timo K

Observer
Quality looks good to me. I like the aluminum grille for example since the stock plastic one goes to **** and looks tattered, but 440 bucks? I'd really need some sort of dual purpose for it... (but should still be aesthetically pleasing)
 

newhue

Adventurer
The products look fine, however if one is not into bling they really need a duel purpose, or fairer priced. As mentioned before there is plenty of similar options existing in the market already. What ever you do think global, not just the US.
The old series grill that was often used for a BBQ plate may appeal to a Defender owners liking, they were wire however. My guess is however most Defender drivers though practical, have moved on from being that practical. I do like the shutter type grill idea however; cold weather, water crossing, it has merit. But talk to to the series blokes, older the better, and go to old Landy meets. Haunt series forums. I think that is were you may be able to get old ideas and re work them into a clever new idea.
Perhaps you could look are re hashing the series tropical roof idea as a complete kit for a Defender. It may be able to support some sort of roof rack or be possible to be both? I would consider a tropical roof for my 130.
Maybe an alloy window insert to let air in and is a security grill as well. Yes been done before but a big one like the whole window. Good for 110's with camper setups, and perhaps good for pet owners. A dog can get good air but stops idiots from plating the dog or possible mishaps. Cant think of second use however.....maybe that dam BBQ plate.:)
 

wuntenn

Adventurer
I'll add a few avenues to reinforce newhue's considerations: security is a main concern of people. There are mechanical commercial locks available that can be retro-fitted but invariably are not defender-specific and require a lot of bodging to get to fit. I've had the need for particular shaped channels and plates that would enable certain lock types to fit, either as support for the lock mechanism in the door, or as support for the striking plate in the frame (or of course vice-versa). My work-arounds have done the job, but often been ugly, obtrusive or both. So there's a need for mounting plates, receiving plates,and all manner of other things to hold doors closed.

I'd like something that allowed the steering wheel to be easily removed and then some kind of brace that fastened to the two front doors preventing them from opening and went over the steering column boss as well so the doors cant be opened and the wheels cant be turned. If it was elegantly made so it looked like part of a top-dashboard assembly and could sit there out of the way until needed, that would be brilliant. Lots of flat space to laser-cut logos and adverts on it too. Park up, pop off the wheel, shove the bar across fitting into each door on each side and with a lock on the steering column, and exit out the back door. Or simpler - again with a removable steering wheel something that goes from the steering column to the gearlever preventing steering or gear movement, and a lock at the steering boss. (Of course only useful for non-airbag older vehicles.)

That would be fairly inconvenient for a thief. Of course you need a good lock on the back door and if you take a look at it you'll see it is actually easier to fit stuff in there, but again it will need ingenuity. I'm not mentioning specifically what I've got for obvious reasons.

Looking ahead defenders are probably going to become scarcer and therefore more of a target for thieves - certainly in certain parts of the UK defenders are hot targets for thieves because they are (relatively) easy to get into, easy to strip to parts, no-one notices them being driven down the road as they are fairly common, and easy to sell on the s/h market. That's an opportunity for you perhaps.

External stuff - I'd like some small guards that can be fitted on the side repeater lights on the front wings, I keep smashing them, so a little metal receiver for them to stop my boot or elbow from demolishing the wee orange plastic light cover would be good. Of course you can take them off and plate the hole over but they are very useful lights so I'd like to be able to use them!

A replacement front door handle made of metal with a slightly deeper handle and cross-hatched grippy top and strengthening plate behind so you can stand on it - that'd be good. NOBODY makes them.

Think that's a daft idea? Well over here one agency I work for, and that runs a fleet of defenders, spends more on door handles each year than replacement shocks and springs because the deerstalkers and other staff use the door handle to climb up to the roofrack, and breaks them. You cant leave it broken and 'just get by' so they have to be replaced immediately. Door stripped, handle replaced, door rebuilt. Time & parts = cost.

Combine a metal doorhandle with a new lock plate/padlock/locking pin system that goes over across the edge of the door and adds an extra, tough lock, and you have a multi-use device. Incorporate a bottle-opener as well and you can sit back and smile! Same on back door area - something that protects and makes a step out of the numberplate light with protection for the light (and another bottle opener) would be good.

And there's lots more I could suggest, but that's enough vapourware from me. I'm off to bend an old piece of scrap with a hammer to make 'something' security-related for my back door!
 
Last edited:

Abu Buckwheat

warrior-scholar-shooter
Wuntenn is right about security products. There are NO LHD related security products in the USA. 3 Pedal lock boxes like the 'Hardcase are well over $500 plus more than $150 shipping to the UDA with a lag time of months since they are custom made. I bought circular lock door hasps for my Hardtop but they are so absolutely huge, made from non-stainless steel and take Frankenstein bolts to attach to the body. The little ones made by Paddocks are so flimsy as to be laughable. Interior door jambs are interesting idea. Don't forget Safarigard went out of business so all of their cool products are lost to the resale bin ... why not take up their slack? Shumaker of Nairobi makes these awesome wood trays that fit over the top of the dash... do those in light aluminum. I read somewhere that small producers of exclusive land rover parts don't survive very long in the USA if they can't beat the Brit and Aussie market's costs plus shipping. I get my bling kit from these companies in this order: MudUK, Nakatenenga, Foley's, Nene, Entreq, & GMB to name a few. Those light guards you made are great if you have $1,200 JW Speaker headlights but for overlanders they we will just use wire mesh-style Kenyan-bug catcher.

One missing link that only one company in the world seems to be making is single piece pre-188 Defender front and rear side door cards. They just don't exist in inventory and the one company, Lasalle Trim charges $400 per set, doesn't seems to do rear doors for a 110 and never has them in stock. Every pre-88 110 coming to America needs these. Think about it. Then again you could custom make COR-4 style radio consoles with custom switch cut outs or their cool bumperettes. How about a lightweight dual battery tray? An under the cubby box waterproof box for electronic. Use your imagination, there is lots of stuff to make and sell by a US producer. Your best sale thus far was those Swedish battery connectors. Small, simple, critical to everyone.

One final note, I have come to notice back here in the states Defender owners come in two flavors: the super awesome Defender brotherhood who will pay nearly any price for practical and good kit then you have the mean cranky old bastards who are so exceptionally cheap they will try to nickel and dime you for new parts that are worth twice the cost. So profit margins will be slim but what if you can make something that the Aussies, Brits and South Africans want for less? Its worth a try.
 

newhue

Adventurer
And that's why they need to be unique and specialised. If they are to be made locally it just cost more so the product needs to be special. Trouble is as soon as you get traction some greedy brainless twit will copy it in china.
I have been looking at a anti theft device just designed in the UK for the Defender. 600 pound, or 940US or 1100AU is what it's worth plus delivery, because it's made in the UK. Am I buying one, yes. The convenience of the product, the uniqueness of its design and practicality is very clever, and it works. Plus my car doesn't get stolen. Worth every cent.
 
Top