My Niva 2  - Fitting Out Details


My Niva 1 - The story begins - the original vehicle


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 "NINA" Niva - pretty much as it looks today as of March 2005, with just a few more external

add-ons to go. Photos taken at Bremer Bay, southern coast of West Australia.



I have added an aluminium roof rack, painted the bull bar and added extra park light/turn signal units to the bull bar.


The very first thing I did was to look for some wide mag wheels and tyres. I managed to find a near new set of 4 original equipment Lada ROH mags with 50% tread Yokohama 225/70 R15s attached, from Mr. Mags in Morley. They then came out with a brand new matching mag for the spare. All up, $650 - bargain!  I then sourced a matching tyre for another $50.


This then lead to the problem of the front wheels protruding outside of the mudguards, illegal in Australia. So a set of rubber mudguard flairs where purchased and fitted. I used three times the number of screws provided in the kit to get them to sit snugly on the guards. The outside band wire was a real pain to fit, but is necessary to hold a nice shape on the outer edge.

Yellow - Cruise controller.

Green - Spotlights indicator light.

Blue - Accessories switch (key module  does not have any accessories circuit!?!  - What can I say?!)       

Pink - Alternator warning light (backup).

Aqua - Illumination for key area (switched).

Red - Map tray.

Yellow large - Cruise control vacuum server.

Yellow small - Cruise control accelerator linkage cable.


Yellow - Cruise control accelerator linkage clamp.

Blue - Window washer reservoir bottle has been relocated

          and changed, giving better access to engine.

Yellow - A mass of wires were fed off the alternator connection causing surges and fluctuations in lights, as well as being very close to the exhaust. These have been re-routed to feed directly off the battery.

Blue - Wires have been neatened and re-routed.

Yellow - Fuel vapour canister has been relocated to give better access to engine.

Note: Original skinny spare tyre was located across this area.

Yellow - Fuel vapour canister re-located to here.

Orange - New windscreen reservoir bottle relocated here.

Blue - Wires that have been re-routed from the alternator to feed off the battery.

Pink - Auxiliary fuse box to do away with the second small fuse box inside. It uses 'spade' fuses rather than the open ceramic style that often loose contact and give trouble.

Pink - Relay for the spotlights.

Yellow - Relocated air-conditioner relays bracket to give better access to engine area.

Yellow - Access hole cut through floor for gearbox filler access. As someone had rounded the hex allen key hole in the bung, I had to chop out the bung for a 1/2 inch square socket drive extension (without socket) to be able to unscrew the filler. This new access hatch also makes it easy to fill with new oil. I then sealed and screwed a cover plate on for access later on.

Blue - Side floor panel bashed out to give more room for my big boot on the clutch pedal - worked a treat. This will be tidied up soon with insulation and matting.

Yellow - Vacuum gauge, this is handy when driving at night to gauge how hard the engine is working as you cannot gauge from the surrounds. Also helps to drive vehicle for best fuel economy. (The gauge is now moved to it permanent position on the dash - see last photo below.)

Yellow - Speaker for the CDMA mobile phone.

Yellow - Microphone off the rear-view mirror for the mobile phone.

Yellow - Mobile phone aerial box stuck on the inside of the windscreen.

Yellow - Mobile phone aerial on the outside of the windscreen.

Yellow - The cover plate for the wiring was hammered out to give more room behind to fit the cruise-control box, etc..

Security barrier to protect in case of crash and against theft of gear. Back and side windows are also security screened to create an theft-proof area for valuable gear like the Engel fridge and camera gear.

A speaker box of 100mm deep x 200mm high x width of the vehicle was constructed first in the back, with openings at each end to allow the reflected bass out. Speakers are Kenwood 330w.

The half-shelf for storage when on a trip. The spare would be on the roof rack when space is required.

Blue - locater units for the Engel fridge when on board.

Showing the security screens firmly anchored to the frame of the vehicle.


The security screen on the tailgate. The tailgate gas lifter struts have also been replaced with new ones.




1. Snatch Strap and 2 Ox Bow shackles.

2. Powder type Fire Extinguisher.

3. 12v. Air Compressor - Bushranger Power Air 2.

4. New Water Pump. 

5. New Thermostat & Housing.

6. Full set of new Radiator Hoses & Heater Hose.

7. New Fan/Alternator & AirCon Belts.



1. Repaired fuel tank breather - had come un-soldered from top of inside tank.

2. Replaced indicator controller unit with generic unit.

3. Fitted green LEDs in instrument panel for turn signal indicators.

4. Replaced side mirrors.

5. Replaced back lift door gas struts with new ones.

6. Fitted 12v. Twin Fluro Light for cabin.

7. Ran a 20amp fused wire through to the back compartment and installed a plug to connect the Engel fridge.

8. Fitted a holder in the engine bay for a second battery.

9. Window Tint with the best - 3M Scotch Tint - guaranteed for life regardless of owner transfer.

10. UHF CB Two-Way Radio installed.

11. Applied rust/sound proofing to all wheel arches and inside rear quarter panels (before fitting out the back).

12. Removed the headlight wiper and washer system.       

Though my Niva came with air conditioning (fitted in W.A. by Cileberti Motors, Osborne Park before sale), the air coming out of the pipes was pathetic. On investigation I found that the little outside vents (near the doors) only worked with the screen demister setting, and most of the cool air was being lost under the dash. When I purchased the vehicle, the cabin heater unit had already been disconnected due to a leaking heater control valve. It looked like the time had arrived to take out the dash and make some changes. Bigger vents were definitely needed.


First item on the agenda was to remove the heater unit, cut off the offending control value and replace it with a hose leading into the engine bay, where I would fit an external control valve from the wreckers later. Next came the removal of the little pipes from the demister feed - I patched this over with reinforced silver foil tape used in industrial air conditioning.


Then I cut and fitted a 60mm piece of poly pipe across the back of the main air box, making sure that the oblong frame face where the centre vent mates did not alter. The pipe was glued into place with Selley's No More Nails - Fast Grab. Fast Grab will not crystallise with heat as normal No More Nails does. I also fixed the collar that had come apart at the air-con/fan blower box, cut out some plastic on the blower box to increase the air flow, and thoroughly sealed everything with silver tape.


Here you see the ducting to take the air to each side vent. The solid duct is from the carbie air intake from some old car.


The air vents themselves are from a TD/TF Ford Cortina (1979-84?). I cut out the hole as neat as I could and glued the vent in place with more Fast Grab, and left it a week to thoroughly dry and strengthen.  The vents close off with a twist of the centre silver knob.


And there you have it - just like a real car!  The blower fan actually had a very good output, and now it gets to where it is needed. The air conditioner is icy cold and is well distributed now. I have since added another heater control valve and gotten the cabin heater/demister working properly as well. I would rate the original system before this modification and repair job at 20% of what it is now. It was well worth the effort.

My Niva 1 - The story begins - the original vehicle

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