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Thread: MogTherapy

  1. #1
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    Default MogTherapy

    Hi Everyone

    In Cape Town - at the moment.

    We had a long, ongoing illness in the family. I was working 12 hours a day to pay medical bills, caring for my wife and looking after my 3 boys.

    It didn't work. Life bombed completely. So, I bought a Unimog from a very nice gentlemen in Pretoria; I resigned from work; I'm busy renovating the apartment so I can let it out and the boys and I are going to spend the next 6 months on the road. I want them to see that life isn't all suffering, it's fun, creative and mysterious too.

    The last time I opened a bonnet was 26 years ago when mechanics didn't involve computers. 80Km/hour is just about right for us.

    Anyone have any great ideas of where we should go?

    See you on the road. Brett

  2. #2
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    Default MogTherapy

    Sounds like an epic adventure. Please share pics. I have a 6 month sabbatical planned in 5 years time to do something very similar
    Last edited by ryanbe; 2017/08/26 at 04:46 PM.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Good luck Brett, share the story of building the Mog and then using it, it'll be be good.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Cool stuff, extended road trip!
    '06 TJ Wranger | 4.0L Auto| 4.5" Lift | 35" Copper STT | 15" MT Classic II Black | 4.88 Gears

  5. #5
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Brett I think you will know the saying - "head north young man, head north!"
    Stanley Weakley.
    Toyota Landcruiser 76SW 4,2L diesel.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hi Brett, be sure to enjoy your trip and keep us updated on your travels
    Audi A6 Avant Quattro V6 tdi ( Sold )
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    2 x Toyota Celica GT4 Gen 6 (Sold) sadly missed
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Strongs! Hope you find some peace out there!
    Peet Schultz

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  9. #8
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    Brett I think you will know the saying - "head north young man, head north!"
    I agree, but there is also so much to see on the way north, so don't rush!

    Enjoy, it sounds absolutely like a great adventure is about to start.

  10. #9
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Brett who cares where you go, point the mog in a direction and drive. This is for the trip not the destination and the most important part is you will have your boys with you and that is priceless.
    Henk
    Adventure is out there go find it

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  12. #10
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    hbannink - never a truer word spoken.

    My son and I caught a train from Cape Town to the mechanic's shop in Paarl to pick up the Unimog this morning.

    It is absolutely AMAZING. But a brute to drive. Slower than everyone on the road, left-hand drive, floats a bit.

    Licensing next. Then we're on the road.

    One thing I noticed: do women get as excited about these things?

    Super excited.
    Last edited by MogTherapy; 2017/10/13 at 05:17 PM.

  13. #11
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hope you and your boys have a great trip, enjoy
    Audi A6 Avant Quattro V6 tdi ( Sold )
    VW Touareg V6 tdi ( sadly written off )
    2 x Toyota Celica GT4 Gen 6 (Sold) sadly missed
    2 x Toyota Celica Gen. 5 ( Sold ) not missed as much as the above.

  14. #12
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hi Brett

    Do not make to many plans. We do this since 2013 and and mostly go by the weather. Stay a bit longer on the nicer places and then move on.6 monthes is just enough for SA and NAM. Maybe add a litle BOTS to it.

    Greetings
    Emanuel
    Last edited by Emanuel; 2017/10/14 at 03:09 PM.
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  15. #13
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hi Brett. I know exactly where you are as far as excitement is concerned. I also had a very large U1750L38 which had a wading depth of about 2m. I built a camper on the back and travelled with my wife. She was short and small but found it easy to drive. There were problems with getting into parks due to the height. You will have a presence on the road. It would go anywhere and mine had 24 forward and revers gears so you could climb a mountain. You will find fixing punctures "interesting" and make sure you have a jack that reaches the axle!! Yes it is slow but I could get 100kph downhill and with a tail wind. One last thing I would say. It is not the destination but the journey. You must enjoy.

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  17. #14
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hi

    Thanks Everyone for your well-wishes. Yeah, I looked at that spare wheel, swing-arm and hand winch attachment on the roof of the cab and broke out in a cold sweat.

    Update: Unfortunately, we're having a few delays getting the vehicle RWC'd and ownership changed. The 'official departments' are having some trouble with the VIN. I managed to locate it, stamped on the right axle just behind the right, rear wheel, but it's heavily rusted and the first RWC inspector refused to accept it as legitimate.

    So, while waiting for a License Consultant to assist me, I thought I'd work on giving it a cosmetic facelift. Let me just say one thing: It is absolutely MASSIVE!
    • I started on the rims - figured I couldn't break anything important there. Each one takes 3 hours to clean properly and give it a first coat. After a suitable wait, it takes another hour for a second coat. I've completed 3 so far.
    • Neither bespoke tyre polish nor shoe polish did anything for the tyres. I finally got some black into the rubber with a product called Black Back. But each tyre takes 500ml. I've only done 1 so far.
    • I stripped the exterior of the cab off headlamps, indicators, radiator grille, reflectors, hand-holds; basically anything bolted or riveted into the cab. Faded green doesn't do it for me so I plan on repainting it. I started stripping off visibly rusted areas and sanding them down. Again, I grossly underestimated how big the thing is. The exterior of the cab alone is probably bigger than a Mini Cooper.
    • Even when it looks clean, there's this microscopic layer of bush dust that is almost embedded at a molecular level. Wire brush, sandpaper, rolls of cloth, Clean Green, and Sugar Soap. Rinse and Repeat.
    • Some things I just can't take off and have to work on them while they're still attached. The front bumper probably weighs as much as a Mini Cooper.
    • Everything is HUGE!


    It's too big to fit in any undercover parking so I'm doing everything on the street, in the city center. Everyone stops to 'chat'.

    Hopefully this week, the license gets sorted. Safe travels. Brett

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  19. #15
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Hi Brett, Glad to hear your still busy with it, all the effort will be well worth it,
    Audi A6 Avant Quattro V6 tdi ( Sold )
    VW Touareg V6 tdi ( sadly written off )
    2 x Toyota Celica GT4 Gen 6 (Sold) sadly missed
    2 x Toyota Celica Gen. 5 ( Sold ) not missed as much as the above.

  20. #16
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    Smile Re: MogTherapy

    You have a potent vehicle in the Mog but allow me to point out a few potential problem areas.

    Jack the vehicle up and feel the wheels bearings for any play. Unfortunately, Mercedes in their wisdom, designed the wheel bearings so that the lower gear act as the inner race for the wheel bearing. If there is play, you need to replace the lower gear with the bearing. That will cost you around R15 000 per wheel for gear, seals, bearings etc. Quite a job and you don't want to do it along the roadside. Luckily, the portal gears are not matched pairs and you can replace just the lower one if damage is confined to the bearing area.

    On the front axle, if you feel play, do not assume it is a wheel bearing. Most of the time it is worn kingpin bushes. It is a robust design but it seems nobody takes the time to regularly grease the upper and lower joints. It cost around R4000 per side and cost is not the issue. Those bolts are big, the parts are heavy and it is back breaking work to fix.

    On the front axle topic. On the 416, the front side shaft runs in an oil-lite bush (last forever) and has a seal running directly on the side shaft. Once the seal has damaged the seal area you are buggered. Only a re chrome will work but you need to take the double universal apart. Costs are around R37 000 for a sideshaft and R11000 for the universals. What nobody told me was that Mercedes has a modification with a "laufring" (bush) which fits onto the damaged seal area and a seal with a bigger inner size and you can reuse the old side shaft and save yourself a little house full of money.

    While we are at the portal axles. The oil capacity is something like 200ml per portal. If you see any leak, repair it immediately since it does not take much to run out of oil.

    Use the correct oil - think it is 80w90 GL5 spec. No fancy synthetic oils needed but stay with the correct grade. The problem is that with prolonged high speed driving the oil can foam and escape via the breather pipe into the axle housing. There is no way it can return and low oil level will cause overheating. Some owners designed external containers to increase the oil capacity without much success.

    On stability in a straight line - check those stabilizer bars (and brackets) between the axle and chassis. If loose or worn, the Mog will go into a sway which is difficult to control. Luckily, it is easy and cheap to repair.

    Check your handbrake and don't rely too much on it. It is not the strong point on a Mog especially with the old drum brake type axles.

    If you have a 416 / U1300 with the OM352 engine, take a spare thermostat with. Not that they are prone to problems but if you should encounter a problem, these engines does not allow you to run it without a thermostat. Ask me, I had overheating problems which spoiled a trip until I found the problem - not engine timing, water pump, thermostat or blocked radiator. A brand new silencer which blocked the exhaust flow.

    Oh, on the 416, go and get new radiator mounting rubbers. The fan run so close to the radiator that worn mountings will wait for the most inconvenient place to arrange a radiator and fan meeting.

    This is the "problem" areas on a Mog which I have found over the years. Apart from that, take your time and enjoy the journey. Oh, one last thing. With a 416, you can work on 5,5 km/l fuel consumption. Better than some Cruiser owners can say.
    Last edited by Woestynbrak; 2017/11/04 at 11:12 PM.

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  22. #17
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    Default Re: MogTherapy

    Good Day Woestynbrak

    Thank you for your incredible contribution by sharing your experience with me.

    I got the Unimog into excellent running condition and I was really starting to enjoy driving it around town - yes, unlicensed but the kids and I couldn't resist. Left-hand drive took a bit of getting used to and it doesn't like freeways - wanders a bit.

    Unfortunately, when it came time for RWC they found an issue with the Engine Number - there isn't one, stamped or on a plate. They referred me onto SAPS clearance. Fortunately, I drove there in my other vehicle and explained the issue to them. They indicated that they would have impounded the vehicle and destroyed it.

    So, I have a beautifully running Unimog camper which I cannot get licensed.

    Thanks again. Brett

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