3RD Door Conversion for the 2000 Model Troopy

Friday, Mar 12, 2010 at 10:18

Member - Trouper (NSW)

12 Mar 2010...The Modsquad tell me I cant keep on talking about this subject on the Forum dont really understand why.
So here is the situation, I have a Troopy which my wife and I have travelled around in for the past 6 years but now I have inherited my 6 year old grandson and 37 year old son Mmmm (watch out it may happen to you) but alls good, we get on pretty well. So there's the situation, We all still want to, need to go bush. The family discussion was do we buy another 4wd or sell the Troopy and purchase a new 76 series with 4 doors. NO way was I selling the Trouper had spent lot of $$$ on over the years and it still only had 140,000ks on the clock. Did not want to buy an additional 2nd hand 4wd at a cost of say $15-20,000 plus plus extras and I didnt need another vehicle in the driveway We already have 3.
Decided the 3rd door option was the way to go.After leaving a request on the Forum I received info that Polan's Trucks in Dandenong did this and usually for the Ambulance Service so I figured if it was good enough for the Ambos it was good enough for me rang them and a very friendly Bill spoke tome about the conversion, he was happy to talk about it for 35 minutes and the cost was $7000. I baulked at this initially but after talking to the other mob in QLD ($10900) They had only done this conversion for Mining Companies (hence the big price I suppose) and they were not particularly helpful on the day. I thought Polan's was the way to go. I delivered the Trouper to Dandenong on the 9th Mar after 2 days removing storage unit, 3 draw unit and 60 litre water tank not to mention all the sundry gear permanently left in the truck.
On arriving at the workshop I was able to see the owners vehicle with the conversion done and got a ride in it so that I could sus out the fit in regards to wind noise of which there was none. Polan's are able to fit a 3 seater bench seat all with retractable safety belts at an added cost of $2500. Yes a lot of money but cheapest way to go. The other thing that impressed me was their offer to take progressive photos of the conversion and email them to me. I will post them HERE as they arive. The Trouper is due to be picked up on 31 Mar10 and I'll keep you posted as soon as info comes to hand.

Tuesday 16 Mar10... Received the following photos today from Polan's Trucks "gasp" quite surprising to see the gapping hole in the old girl. Bill said all was proceeding on time and the 3 seater bench seat has been ordered...More to follow.

Wednesday 24 Mar 2010 Attached are the second lot of photos received from Polan's Trucks, Everything is on track for delivery on 31 Mar2010. So the plan is to Train it from Nowra to Sydney on the 30th and fly the next day at 8:45am th Melbourne that will give me plenty of time to bus it to Spender Street and then train it out to Dandenong. I spoke to Bill and asked that the OME step be extended so that it covers the new door. It is intesting to note that the whole side of the vehicle is to be resprayed. Extra roof and floor supports are being inserted and additional spraying of the interior is being done. I can now see why the cost of $7000, I did not think of these things on making the initial inquiry....More to follow.

Friday 26 Mar 2010...Attached are the 3rd lot of photos depicting the Troopy prepped and ready for the final top coat note the new door. Bill advised that Rust Proofing consisted of spraying the "innards" with a heavy zinc coating followed by a liberal dose of Cavity Wax this being done prior to "closing" the job for painting.
The bench seat is now on site awaiting install. When I finally get the Trouper home I need to take it to Off Road Systems (ORS) of Narellan NSW (sydney outer S/W suburb) and have the current 1200mm long 3 drawer unit cut down to about 900mm, and a new water tank fitted. ORS were the original people who did the job 7 years ago and said they would be happy to modify the unit. Which is very nice of them. Whilst they had installed lots of draw units in a variety of 4WDs, My Troopy was their first and so they experimented on it re dimentions etc and had the vehicle for over 2 weeks. I was very very happy with what they did and were far cheaper and more flexible in their attitude and are more willing to take 'onboard' your ideas than any of the other draw unit "specialists". More to follow....

Thursday April Fools Day 2010.... On Tueday the 30 Mar we left Nowra by train for Sydney and arrived at 4:30 pm prior to the flight to Melbourne early next morning. we arrived at Dandenong early in the afternoon and phoned Bill from the railway station. We were a bit anxious and excited at the same time and Bill picked up on this and said, "oh it wont be ready for a few more days yet didn't you get my email" I was crestfallen. "HAHAHA gotcha" he said. we all laughed at this and he drove us to the workshop.
There was the old girl sitting proud as punch out the front of the show room saying "look at me, look at me". I must say she was looking good with her new extra door. It was interesting to note that the vehicle had been completely resprayed down that side. An old dent had also been removed. (It was interesting to note a Nissan Patrol in the work area having the back cutoff and an extended tray added would make a nice full dual cab ute.)
The new 3 seater looks particularly good with it's 3 retractable seatbelts and was most comfortable as we found out on our return trip back home that day and the next. There was plenty of leg room in the back as my six foot three son can attest to and there is still plenty of space in the back (1100mm) for my re-worked draw unit and the Engel fridge. I'm happy to say there is NO wind noise and NO Leaks.
So there you have it. $10,000 was a lot of money to spend but at the end of the day it was needed and we will continue to enjoy our trip away to the bush. Finally I must say that Bill Polan's Truck refinishers were excellent to deal with.

Cheers for now.......Jeff


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