Builds Aussie HZJ78 in Canada: "Ozzi" (simple build) (1 Viewer)

Joined
Jun 16, 2020
Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
Hey all :)
I have found the forum immeasurably helpful while researching (and then waiting for the arrival...) of my HZJ78 from Australia. I don't want to be "one of those" who just lurks, but I also don't have very much to contribute (yet?!) in terms of knowledge or experience... so at least I'm participating by posting some Troopy p0rn.

Story goes as follows:

For as long as I can remember, I wanted a :censor:Land Rover Defender:censor:. Nothing ever came to fruition, living in Canada without access to new ones and never really having the time to research and go through the process of buying abroad and importing... and I think I always had a lurking fear of its poor reliability and countless issues.

Up until mid-March 2020, my life proceeded as normal... Running around the world, having a blast but very little spare time. I'm addicted to traveling, but my work schedule has meant I could never go overlanding - a break of a week is exceptionally long in normal circumstances. Covid-19, however, changed all of that. It has had a huge impact on my profession, and finally I had time to look into getting my car... after a few weeks poking around (read: countless hours) looking for the-car-that-cannot-be-mentioned in Europe, I found one which was a unicorn... 2000, 20K km, stored by somebody who had passed away - like new. But I never liked the 110, only the 90, and I came to think - what on earth would I do with a 90?!

One day it hit me - I should check the LC Troop Carrier... This was never in the running because I had researched it before and knew how difficult it was to find one in the condition I wanted. Some more time on the internet, and I find the one. In Brisbane, Australia - only 60,000 km, very good shape, former ambulance. Long story short, I bought it and started the process of bringing it to Canada. This was in mid-April, mind you.

It finally arrived in Canada this week and I drove it home the ~1000km from Vancouver...

Now the process begins - I need to get it registered here, tear out nearly everything in the back, and work on (basic) sleeping quarters - along with (spoiler) deciphering a bunch of crazy wiring that came with it and various bits and pieces...

Sale pictures:
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Joined
Jun 16, 2020
Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
Arranging shipping was a learning curve for me. I always greatly prefer to do things myself when possible... but shipping cargo is super complicated. I got numerous quotes for shipping a 20" FCL from Brisbane to Vancouver, picked the one which was the best (and for which I could get insurance). It took two weeks from when I purchased and paid for everything for the Troopy to be picked up... and another week for it to be loaded onto the ship. Hurry up and wait is the mantra of shipping. I tracked it to Ningbo, China, where it was transshipped onto another vessel which would take it to Vancouver - where it arrived two days earlier than originally expected.

Then, it needed to clear customs. This was another step - one which I technically could have done myself, but considering I would have had to stay in Vancouver while it was being processed, it was ultimately more logical - and less expensive - to have somebody do it for me. Containers are very likely to be examined in port, which was the case here, and this added one day to the process - but, perhaps due to Covid or simply good luck, it was out of the port two days after arriving on the ship. I had booked a (refundable, thanks to Covid) flight every day for the whole week so I could quickly hop over and get the car as soon as it was available... and on Wednesday, my dad (willing conspirator and participant in this purchase) and I flew to Vancouver (on yet another empty flight - 20 passengers) to get the car.

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The container had been trucked to a warehouse in Port Coquitlam, so it was best to rent a car - just in case we needed to get fuel, parts, whatever - and drive out.

Hertz gave me an "upgrade" on the one-way rental to a Kia Soul...

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...and off we went to meet our new car!!

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Last edited:
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
1,512
Location
colorado
Hey all :)
I have found the forum immeasurably helpful while researching (and then waiting for the arrival...) of my HZJ78 from Australia. I don't want to be "one of those" who just lurks, but I also don't have very much to contribute (yet?!) in terms of knowledge or experience... so at least I'm participating by posting some Troopy p0rn.

Story goes as follows:

For as long as I can remember, I wanted a :censor:Land Rover Defender:censor:. Nothing ever came to fruition, living in Canada without access to new ones and never really having the time to research and go through the process of buying abroad and importing... and I think I always had a lurking fear of its poor reliability and countless issues.

Up until mid-March 2020, my life proceeded as normal... Running around the world, having a blast but very little spare time. I'm addicted to traveling, but my work schedule has meant I could never go overlanding - a break of a week is exceptionally long in normal circumstances. Covid-19, however, changed all of that. It has had a huge impact on my profession, and finally I had time to look into getting my car... after a few weeks poking around (read: countless hours) looking for the-car-that-cannot-be-mentioned in Europe, I found one which was a unicorn... 2000, 20K km, stored by somebody who had passed away - like new. But I never liked the 110, only the 90, and I came to think - what on earth would I do with a 90?!

One day it hit me - I should check the LC Troop Carrier... This was never in the running because I had researched it before and knew how difficult it was to find one in the condition I wanted. Some more time on the internet, and I find the one. In Brisbane, Australia - only 60,000 km, very good shape, former ambulance. Long story short, I bought it and started the process of bringing it to Canada. This was in mid-April, mind you.

It finally arrived in Canada this week and I drove it home the ~1000km from Vancouver...

Now the process begins - I need to get it registered here, tear out nearly everything in the back, and work on (basic) sleeping quarters - along with (spoiler) deciphering a bunch of crazy wiring that came with it and various bits and pieces...

Sale pictures:
View attachment 2368908View attachment 2368910View attachment 2368911View attachment 2368912View attachment 2368913
Wow that's really nice what part of Canada do you live in
 
Joined
Jun 16, 2020
Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
Joined
Dec 14, 2005
Messages
1,512
Location
colorado
That’s what I thought too..
That’s what I thought too... but it’s not OEM... which makes it stick out a bit. It’s quite solid. I’ll get around to posting some pics soon.



Thanks! Hope so!



I’m in Calgary. :)
what kind of work do you do in Alberta
. but it’s not OEM... which makes it stick out a bit. It’s quite solid. I’ll get around to posting some pics soon.



Thanks! Hope so!



I’m in Calgary. :)
you know I would still consider Canada I just feel that it's a better country just the cost of living and of course the extreme cold is an issue. But the social services in Canada I believe are just much stronger than what's offered in the United States. I've never been into Alberta. I've talked to people that I've worked in the oil fields. I've been as far as Cranbrook and Trail British Columbia I tell you what I'll of the drives. BCS so beautiful in the summer. what kind of work do you do in Alberta
 

Gun Runner 5

KI4CMQ
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Oct 22, 2009
Messages
17,182
Location
Thomasville, GA
Granted the “extra” door isn’t OEM but based on that one photo it appears its addition was well thought out and executed. I personally would see it as a plus.
 
Joined
Jun 16, 2020
Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
It was about a 45 minute drive from the airport to Port Coquitlam. We arrived at the prescribed address - a very large, long warehouse building with various offices interspersed. The numbering was a touch odd... I needed to find 107... 109 was at the end of the side facing the road... so #107 must be on the other side... As we're driving, dad spots the Troopy - "there it is!!!". Stop to finally take a look first-hand: it's amazing to finally see it after so many months...

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Still have to find the office though and get the keys... Around the building, we indeed found an office. We were sent around back, in the midst of boxes and boxes of hand sanitizer and face masks, to meet the warehouse manager, who had some paperwork for us to fill out.

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Back out front, a nice guy came out and hooked up the battery for us. "Hey, you're taking away my truck?!" After some inquiries about the price and commenting this was the cleanest import he's ever seen ("and I see a lot"), we got the keys and took a look around... My dad nearly got a heart attack when he put in the key into the ignition and didn't realize you had to push a button to get it back out... :rofl:
After that little episode, we started 'er up.

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Joined
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Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
First try was a success! Deep sigh of relief. Next step was to drive to Hertz and return the car (Maple Ridge location - on the way) and head to a gas station. Since I was the driver on the rental, my dad drove the Cruiser and followed me... Driving with someone following you is never fun, especially since it was a big event to begin with.

We had both driven RHD before (myself in Mauritius, Tanzania, and the UK) but never driven RHD in a LHD environment... and I had fond memories of my dad turning on the wipers rather frequently in RHD cars. So far that hasn't happened once, which I'd call a success.

After ~30 min drive we reached Hertz and returned the Soul. First time hopping into the Troopy!! We were both very happy... exactly what we envisioned or better. Yes, neither of us had driven a Troopy before. ;) I had been in one (and even stuck in one [with an amateur driver]) on an African safari, but never behind the wheel...

Surprisingly we had received the Troopy with both tanks over half full...

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Still, we needed to head to a gas station to fill up, and check on the tires. I had scouted out Mission as a town where diesel was cheaper than anywhere else by a wide margin (89.9 c/L vs. 99 lowest on the whole drive to Calgary). With that accomplished, I got behind the wheel for the first time, and we went out onto the highway and towards Kamloops, our stop for the night.

For many forum members from the USA, driving without a plate is something rather normal... but here in Canada (where I have lived all my life) I have yet to see a single car without a plate - and I'm the observant type! With the "In Transit" permit from Alberta, you put the piece of paper in the lower right corner of the windscreen... with nothing on the back. :clap:Love it! Was expecting to for sure get stopped by the police on the drive, but although we passed a few - and were passed by one - it did not occur.

Anyways, the drive was very enjoyable, great weather, and we spent a lot of time in the right lane. ;)

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The sun was getting low on the horizon as we approached Kamloops, so we could fully enjoy the silhouette of this beauty...

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Parking at the Delta Kamloops:

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Joined
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Messages
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Apparently the hotel was very busy (the underground garage was full, though with 6" clearance it wasn't an option anyways) due to the filming of some movie.

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We headed a block over for some beers and a burger to celebrate...

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Couldn't resist stopping back at the Troopy on the way back to the room for the night...

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...and off to bed it was!
 
Joined
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Messages
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Location
Calgary, AB
Woke up in the morning to some rain... Good! Let's see if everything is in working order. Day 1 we tested A/C (blows very cold), all lights/signals, and driving components.

Now, we'd get to test for leaks (natch there aren't any - this is a LC, not a Def.) and if the heating works...

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Had a nice coffee to start off the day in Kamloops, and we hit the road again.

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Getting the hang of the lack of cupholders...

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Heating? Check.
Wipers? Check.
Rear wiper? Check.
CB radio? Check.

Hella chart/map light? Hmmmm. Not working.

Soon enough we made it to some beautiful views at Shushwap Lake...

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Joined
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Messages
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Location
Calgary, AB
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Made a stop at the "Last Spike" near Revelstoke...
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A good chance for a mini-photoshoot...
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Stopped off at Revelstoke at the Railway Museum - very nice. Rain didn't let up even a little bit...
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Joined
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Messages
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Location
Calgary, AB
Another stop was made in Golden... nothing much here though. Moving on, then - making good time to this HZJ78's new home...
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And finally, in the early evening hours, in its new home...

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Had to spot the garage to make 100% it'd fit (measurements being measurements... but have to make super sure!).

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Had to make the garage a bit taller (note: this was done beforehand... I had checked the measurements of course!) Nothing is standard (no right angles...) in this 60's garage. Luckily we were going to paint it anyways.

That cut 2x4 is the amount we needed to increase by.

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Joined
Sep 22, 2004
Messages
812
Location
Calgary
You should bring that thing out to Peter's Drive in on Thursday evening and meet the local TLCA chapter - Rocky Mountain Land Cruisers. www.rmlca.ab.ca Covid has us social distancing for our monthly meetings in the Peter's parking lot. 7:30ish. Be sure to strike up a conversation with Loewnbrau and inquire about his massive warehouse of new old stock 70 series parts that will fit your truck! Maybe i will even spark up (<- that's diesel irony) one of my 70's to properly welcome your troopy to town!
 
Joined
Jun 16, 2020
Messages
127
Location
Calgary, AB
You should bring that thing out to Peter's Drive in on Thursday evening and meet the local TLCA chapter - Rocky Mountain Land Cruisers. www.rmlca.ab.ca Covid has us social distancing for our monthly meetings in the Peter's parking lot. 7:30ish. Be sure to strike up a conversation with Loewnbrau and inquire about his massive warehouse of new old stock 70 series parts that will fit your truck! Maybe i will even spark up (<- that's diesel irony) one of my 70's to properly welcome your troopy to town!

Thank you for the info and the invite... If everything goes to plan (OOP, registration, etc.) then I hope I'll be able to join... Will PM you before. Have to drive out to a friend to see about stripping and fitting the interior too.

That is one hell of a clean Troopy :D now I want one :bang: badly!
Congrats and enjoy 👍

Thank you. It is very clean but I'm sure there'll still be some surprises. Hopefully not @TonyP style surprises......

I wish I got to see this rig while you were in Kamloops looks mint! :)

Was a very quick overnight! But I think I'll be heading out to BC when I have the sleeping quarters set... that's the plan anyways :)
 

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