In this issue: Thoughts on ImportingBillings and Wild WalesParagon BeautyAir MuseumBache's Garage

R.O.V.E.R.S. Takes Flight
Bill Bettridge

On Sunday, May 30th a small group of us ventured to the new Smithsonian Air & Space Museum near Dulles Airport in northern Virginia. While not much of an off-road event, the few of us who did venture out to this managed to have a good time. I’m sorry more folks weren’t able to attend.

The new museum is the Udvar-Hazey Center just opened in December 2003 and is a 750,000 sq ft hanger packed full of flying machines that the Smithsonian has never had room to display in the past.

On display are planes such as the Enola Gay, the B52 which dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima, the SR71 “Blackbird” reconnaissance aircraft which is still the highest and fastest flying aircraft to this day even though it was designed in the late 1950's. This particular aircraft on display in the museum set the world record for fastest flight when it was being flown from Beale Air Force base in California to Washington DC to be donated for the museum. Also on display were the Space Shuttle - Enterprise, a recently donated Air France Concorde, and numerous fighter planes from WWII to present.

Of particular interest to some of the ROVER gearheads was the aircraft engine display which had airplane engines from the early 1900's to modern gas turbines. Some of the 12 and 16 cylinder engines used in fighter aircraft were impressive to say the least. There were several discussions as to how one could stuff a 6 foot long x 5 foot tall engine in one’s truck!

Other attractions were the aircraft flight simulators you could take the kids into (my son enjoyed that as did I!), an Imax movie theater which we did not have time to attend (maybe next time), a huge gift store to separate you from your hard earned cash if Rover ownership has left you any, as well as a Subway sandwich shop which Tom Bache enjoyed immensely :-)

After spending about 5 hours wandering the center, we were all pretty pooped, and frankly had not thoroughly covered all the ground there was. I’m certain that I’ll be back again sometime soon.

Thanks again for those that were able to make the trip to attend.

Trevor's Tidbits

Has anybody ever weighed the spares and equipment they load for a weekend's adventure? I removed my camping gear, recovery gear, tool boxes, spares: brake pads/tie rod ends/ track rods/axles/ belts/short block/ transmission/ radiator, powertank, and the back of the vehicle came up several inches! Some of the containers required two hands and considerable effort to remove them from the vehicle! there is an additional bonus: fuel economy broke into the low 30's with a hot cammed 4.6 under the hood!
Not really.

But I wonder, do I really need all of this stuff? If I take it out because I have decided that I haven't needed it for a while, will I need it next time out? Is Jeremiah going to run out of brake pads on the downhill side of a ski resort in Vermont again? Is Peter going to put another hole in his Rangie gas tank that could only be fixed with a sheet metal screw?

What would you bring along?

I had recently changed my headlamp bulbs to higher wattage unit, but was concerned about the extra load on the already fragile headlamp switch. Painless Performance makes a plug in headlamp wiring kit that uses the original wiring to power heavy duty relays. The new lamps are even brighter and the expensive, fragile, headlamp switch is much cooler.

1994 - 2004 Discovery I & II
If you are unable to turn your key in the ignition it may be due to your steering wheel being locked in a way that it is putting too much tension on the lock cylinder. If this is the case you need to slightly turn the steering wheel one way or the other while trying to turn the ignition. If this doesn't work you should try another key. If still no luck your lock cylinder may be worn.
-Bob Jackson
Master Tech. & Shop Foreman @ Land Rover Willow Grove
R.O.V.E.R.S. (ROVERS Club ) is an incorporated Land Rover club (Series Land Rover, Range Rover, Defender , Discovery and Freelander) serving the Mid-Atlantic region (including Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey). Membership is open to all Land Rover enthusiasts. The club plans and participates in off-road events, picnic, rallies, car shows and shop days. We also publish a newsletter The Fairlead six times a year.