Search and Rescue Defender 110

Like many Land Rover owners, Todd Eliason, Columbia Rovers owner, has always wanted a Defender 110. When this particular Defender went up for sale by a Columbia Rovers customer, Todd seized the opportunity. Todd’s plan for this truck was to create the ultimate Search and Rescue vehicle. Although Todd already owned “Tango,” a fully equipped Discovery II, he wanted something different.

Here are some of the modifications that Todd and the crew at Columbia Rovers has done to this 110:

  • Detroit True-Trac Lockers
  • New transmission
  • Customized stock roof rack
  • 3 inch Old Man Emu lift
  • Columbia Overland Spacers
  • Rebuilt front axle, with new steering components
  • QT Diff Guards
  • Hella HID Lights
  • Siren and light controller
  • Safari Guard Spare Jack Holder
  • OEM Brush Guard
  • IPF headlight conversion
  • Sound Off amber strobes
  • Ham Radio
  • I-Com commercial radio
  • Acer 10inch, Windows 8 tablet used for navigation
  • Mombasa roof-top tent
  • LED interior lighting
  • OEM castor correction

Todd explained that he was sad to see Tango go, but he is “excited to put this truck to work this summer.” Be sure to check back on any updates to this one of a kind Search and Rescue vehicle.

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Project: 2003 Discovery II

With a new year underway, Columbia Rovers is underway with a new project. This time it’s a 2003 Discovery Series II getting the Columbia Rovers treatment. This truck was purchased with a branded/totaled title. This truck had damage to the driver’s side headlight, quarter panel, and bumper. With no damage to the frame replacing these parts is an easy fix.

The plans for this project are quite simple; replace the damaged parts, and build a mild custom truck. This leaves room for the new owner to make their own modifications. That’s right, once this project is complete and driven for a few months to ensure everything runs and operates smoothly it will be for sale.

Now onto the important stuff. After a few weeks of work the following items have already been installed:

  • 2 inch Old Man Emu lift
  • 265 x 75 x 16 Mud Terrain tires
  • Black powder coated stock wheels
  • Rear door ladder
  • Spare tire relocator for the oversized spare
  • Running boards removed

The next steps for the project are to install the new ARB Winch Bumper and to build and install a 5.0 liter Top Hat motor.

Columbia Rovers purposely left out some of the modifications they normally perform on projects so that the new customer can add things such as:

  • Baja Rack
  • Sliders
  • Skid plates
  • Diff guards
  • Off-road lighting
  • Winch

Keep an eye out for more updates on this project!


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Todd’s Search and Rescue Discovery II

When Todd isn’t busy with running the day-to-day operations at Columbia Rovers, or volunteering with his kid’s sports, Todd is out assisting in search and rescue missions with Mountain Wave Search and Rescue. Mountain Wave is responsible for setting up the communications networks to streamline contact between police, fire, and rescue.

What Todd uses to get to the hard to reach areas to assist in rescues is “Tango,” a 1999 Land Rover Discovery Series II.  This truck has been heavily modified to take on the toughest obstacles while Todd is out on search and rescue missions.

Here is a run down Tango’s modifications:

  • OME Suspension
  • Land Rover OEM diff guard and steering protector
  • Safari Guard Front Bumper /steering protector
  • Safari Guard Rock Sliders
  • Safari Guard Rear Bumper
  • Columbia Rovers Drivelines
  • Columbia Overland Fuel Tank Skid Plate
  • Locking transfer case conversion
  • Stainless Steel Brake Lines
  • IPF Driving lights lower
  • Hella 500 lights upper
  • Pierce Winch w/ in cab remote via factory switches
  • Recovery Gear Synthetic winch cable and hook
  • Safari Snorkel
  • Baja Expedition Roof Rack
  • Land Rover rear ladder
  • Engel Refrigerator
  • Columbia Rovers spare tire jerry can holder
  • Columbia Rovers Stainless steel back door panel
  • Columbia Rovers Back Panel storage bag kit
  • ScanGuage II engine diagnostics
  • Custom engine mapping

What makes this truck unique is the addition of important tools used in the search and rescue missions Todd goes on. The Search and Rescue conversion includes:

  • Acer W500 Tablet PC
  • Additional PC touch screen mounted in dash
  • Kenwood D700 dual band radio/APRS
  • Icom 521 commercial Public Safety radio
  • Exterior LED emergency warning lights
  • LED interior lighting
  • Garmin GPSmap 276C
  • GoLight remote searchlight
  • Columbia Overland dual battery tray
  • Hellroaring Dual battery isolator/combiner control module
  • Odyssey 1500 marine main battery, odyssey 1200 reserve battery
  • Colman Solar Panel kit
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Meet the Owner: Todd Eliason

People develop passions from a young age or may find them later in life. These passions can develop from a wide range of things, including childhood toys. In the case of Todd Eliason, the new owner of Columbia Rovers, it was a Corgi Land Rover toy. Todd later found this toy in his parent’s attic, and knew that his fascination with Land Rovers started at a young age.

When Todd moved to Colorado for college, he found himself surrounded by Land Rovers. Around this time the first Range Rovers were starting to show up in the United States, and Todd’s passion grew.  Todd quickly discovered what these trucks were all about.

In 1994 Todd moved back to Portland and picked up his first Range Rover. He quickly found himself involved in the local Rover club and his passion really started to grow.  Over the years Todd became more and more involved going on club trips and eventually starting to lead trips.

Todd’s career has always been in technology sales. He has helped major technology companies set up data networking, security, and data and voice systems. When he wasn’t busy with work, Todd merged his passion for Land Rovers and his involvement with local Search and Rescue groups.

At the age of 14, Todd started with the Multnomah County Search and Rescue team. Following college, Todd continued to help with Search and Rescue missions and later joined Mountain Wave Search and Rescue. Todd was instrumental in collaborating the merge between Clackamas County 4×4 Search and Rescue with Mountain Wave.

Mountain Wave is responsible for setting up the communications necessary for these search and rescue efforts. The communications that Mountain Wave sets up streamlines communications between local police agencies, fire departments and rescue personnel. In addition to being a command officer with Mountain Wave, Todd is on the board of directors and logs between five and six weeks out of the year of volunteer time.

Todd’s vehicle of choice while assisting on the missions: Tango, a fully equipped Land Rover Discovery Series II. Tango has all of the necessary equipment on board for search and rescues such dual monitors for GPS, public safety radios, and LED emergency warning lights all around.

The infatuation with Land Rovers lead to a passion, and now it has lead to a career for Todd. After years working in the tech industry, the opportunity to become the owner of Columbia Rovers came up. Todd has been a friend of the shop for six years, and has been a big part of organizing and leading trips for Columbia Rovers over those six years.

When Todd isn’t busy with Land Rovers, Todd can be found volunteering with his kid’s sports. Todd recently got married to his wife Abby. Todd’s other passion is flying. He is a former flight instructor, as well as a multi-engine instrument instructor and continues to fly for fun.

Todd is excited for this new opportunity to own Columbia Rovers. Who knew it would all start with a Corgi toy when he was a child?


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Glass Buttes Trip

Todd Eliason led a group of staff and customers through the Glass Buttes region of Central Oregon.  We trekked to the summit of Glass Buttes taking in the 360 degree panoramic views then found a good site to settle in for the night.  The next day we explored various terrain between Glass Buttes and our next camping destination, Green Mountain.  Crack in the Ground gave us all a chance to stretch our legs exploring a geological site that truly needs to be seen in person to appreciate.  On Sunday, we made our way to a few more Central Oregon attractions.  We made lunch at Sand Rock in Christmas Valley before playing on the sand dunes.  Our last site was well worth the entire trip, Derrick Cave.  Caves aren’t uncommon to Oregon, but few of us had ever seen a cave with such massive girth and length, just like Todd.  Scott Tarrant took some time to play with his camera and “light painting”.  Thank you Todd for leading the trip and to all the great people that came and made it a great weekend.



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Columbia Rovers New Owner!

After starting Columbia Rovers in 1999, Brent has sold the company to his good friend Todd Eliason. Brent will be focusing on his latest project Columbia Overland, in Bend, OR. Todd is a seasoned Land Rover enthusiast, having purchased his first Range Rover in 1994. Todd currently owns Brent’s former heavily modified Discovery II, our project LR3 and a 1980 109in LR Stage1 diesel. Todd has been an active member of the Land Rover and off-road community, leading trips on his own and on behalf of Columbia Rovers. Todd also serves a volunteer roll on the Board of Directors and as Command Officer with Search and Rescue, utilizing his off-road, communications, and navigation skills to assist in the management and recovery of lost persons. Todd will be running Columbia Rovers alongside his soon-to-be wife Abby (also a modified Discovery II owner).

The Columbia Rovers staff remains the same synergistic assembly of competent and dedicated employees.

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Fourth of July Closure

Columbia Rovers will be closed Saturday July 2nd and Monday July 4th so that our employees may spend time with their families and observe the holiday.

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Project LR3: BajaRack Roof Rack

Although the LR3 is cavernous inside, there are just some things that you don’t want to carry in the cabin such as a hi-lift jack, shovel, axe, fuel cans, etc. BajaRack offers a very simple, lightweight rack for the LR3 in both standard and EXP (Expedition) formats. We opted for the EXP format in order that we could mount our roof top tent as low as possible. The BajaRack has a cut out in the rear to avoid obstructing satellite radio antennas and also clears the front sunroof easily. We are looking forward to the next trip when we can fully utilize that BajaRack along with a roof top tent.


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LR3 Project: ARB Winch Bumper

To cure the tire clearance issues with the LR3, we rang up ARB and plucked a new winch bumper from their stock.  As always, the fit and finish of the ARB bumper was exemplary.  ARB’s design allows for greater tire clearance thus eliminating the rubbing present with the stock bumper.  The ARB bumper also provided an improved approach angle versus the stock bumper.  The ARB bumper incorporates the factory fog lamps and adds a tasteful running lamp and turn signal combo.  Thank you to Seth and ARB for getting the bumper to us in time for our Glass Buttes trip!


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Ready for Summer AC Service Special $149.95

Summer is upon us, and although your AC may be working fine right now, it may leave you sweating in 80+ degree weather.  Beat the heat with our AC service special! We’ll visually inspect hoses, lines, seals and other components for leaks, check temperature readings, verify compressor function, and inspect the drive belt for cracks or damage. After verifying those basic mechanics of the system, we evacuate the refrigerant from the system and test for leaks before topping the system up with up to 2 lbs of R134 refrigerant, for only $149.95


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