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Tembo's Adventures

After 18.000 km, 8 Countries and 5 months

After 18.000 km we are proud to say that Tembo is doing great and that the small issues we have to solve turn Tembo into a real African car and we love that :-)
We are experts at visiting African garages by now and it is a great way to get into contact with the locals. Most of the repairs were classical wear and tear things. The only major repair we had done, was the readjustment of the timing chain.


Why does this ##**## fan belt not fit? in the middle of nowhere in Libya

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Here is our “Turn-Tembo-into-an-African-car-list”

ripped drive belt/fan belt (Keilriehmen). Desert, Libya, Jens
broken bolt, that connects the windscreen with the chassis (driver side) in Sudan after a heavy corrugation. we got it fixed in Khartoum, but it hadn’t really stopped us from driving
broken front screen (passenger side) due to large stone hitting the screen at full speed - very annoying, since this happened on tarmac!!! Khartoum, Sudan, garage
exchange of damaged glow plug. On road to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Ethiopian helper
replacement of one broken fuel injection jet. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, garage
replacement of exhaust pipe gadget (Krümmerdichtung). Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, garage
Auto acceleration "Tembomat" - identified problem in Marsabit. A tiny coil spring fell off. We fixed it with wire and now Tembo is back to doing what we tell him to do – we replaced our wire workaround with a new spring. Kenya, Jens
replacement of steering ball joints front left and right. Nairobi, Kenya, LandMarque
replacement of rear shock bushes. Nairobi, Kenya, LandMarque
readjustment of timing of diesel injection pump. Nairobi, Kenya, F.I.T.S.
exchange of timing chain tensioner. Nairobi, Kenya, F.I.T.S.
readjustment of timing. Nairobi, Kenya, F.I.T.S.
luckily, Jerone, a dutch guy with knowledge of electrics managed to repair our never-stopping wipers and probably saved us a bunch of nerves. They drove us up the wall in Ethiopia. "I pulled off this wire and now the wipers stop again. But don't ask me why"
wheel balancing and wheel alignment. Mombasa, Kenya, Pirelli Wheels
tightening of the spring leaf bolts. Mombasa, Kenya, CMC Garage
replacement the propeller shaft screws, that had fallen off in Tiwi Beach, with proper Land Rover screws
replacement of the steering shock absorber at Peponi Beach, Tanzania, Jens
replacement of rear cross-joint of the propeller shaft (it was loose). Probably from missing and wrong screws for the past 17.000 km. Tanga, Tanzania, LAL Garage
change of all lubricants/oils, i.e. engine, swivels, gear boxes, diffs. Tanga, Tanzania, LAL Garage


Tembo without an engine at F.I.T.S. Nairobi, Kenya

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Log Book

After a long drive through the heat and when pushing him to 70km/h he requests some oil, but that is only fair.

After 9.000 km all we can say is: Tembo is the greatest! He survived Sudan without any problems. We heard terrible stories about what had happended to overlander cars in Sudan.

Tembo had suffered big time in Ethiopia. The roads are atrocious and we had to drive long stretches in first gear to descend from 2.400m back to 1.000m and then climb back up to 3.000m. 60km before Addis Ababa we had to stop because the motor made terrible sounds. An Ethiopian who stopped exchanged a glow plug (Gluehkerze) and we were able to drive to Addis. But still the motor doesn’t sound good and it seems that the bad diesel in Ethiopia (too much water in it) has attacked our diesel pump. Since it is the Ethiopian New Years right now, the garages will open again tomorrow and then we will know more. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.

Thanks for the crossed fingers ... everything is fixed and Tembo is back on track. He got a new fuel injection jet (Einspritzdüse) and a new exhaust pipe gadget (Krümmerdichtung).

Right outside of Timau, Kenya, Tembo started shaking wildly on a piece of bad road. It turned out that the front steering ball joints were worn. So we had to drive very slowly and watch out for bad tarmac. On smooth surface and with moderate speed he was doing fine though and so we made it Nairobi without any problems.
Also the engine was not performing as it should and so we gave him a treatment in Nairobi.

After 11.500 km the picture is somewhat diffrent. However Tembo is still doing fine. We had some work done in Nairobi. After the rough roads in Ethiopia and nothern Kenya some bolts got loose and the steering needed to be readjusted (see below). However, we did not yet (till Nairobi) have a puncture or broken suspensions - the classical damages on these roads. We also had the timing (timing chain in the engine) readjusted in Nairobi.

Now he is back on track for further adventures!

23.12.2006, Lilongwe, Malawi:
Everything is fine. Sometimes there is a strange rattling noise coming from the engine, but we are ignoring it so far. Still no puncture. Maybe Mozambique will change that …


Wheel Alignment in Mombasa, Kenya

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