Tweaked LC79 is the ul­ti­mate ad­ven­ture rig.

When life threw Shane a curve­ball, he struck back by build­ing the ul­ti­mate tourer.

4 x 4 Australia - - Contents - WORDS DANIEL EVERETT PHO­TOS PHIL COOPER

IN MANY ways 4x4s are about in­di­vid­u­al­ity. They’re a way for peo­ple to forge their own path through life. To take their own road and do what oth­ers don’t, both fig­u­ra­tively and lit­er­ally. Speak to any off-roader in any part of Aus­tralia and you’ll find per­son­alised mod­i­fi­ca­tions, plans for ad­ven­ture, and a back story just that lit­tle bit more in­ter­est­ing than your av­er­age Joe. Oc­ca­sion­ally, though, you’ll come across some­one who stands out more than usual. Shane Grif­fiths from Port Stephens, NSW, is that kind of bloke.

Shane and his wife Lisa have led a life that’s taken them on a roller coaster of highs and lows: through fi­nan­cial hur­dles, a near­fa­tal shark at­tack, trav­el­ling through re­mote Abo­rig­i­nal com­mu­ni­ties you won’t find on any map, and liv­ing within a stone’s throw of one of the most pop­u­lar beaches in Aus­tralia. Their story in­cludes singing suc­cess on tele­vi­sion’s The X Fac­tor, shark con­ser­va­tion, and one of Aus­tralia’s first eco wa­ter parks. They lead a ver­sa­tile life, and they needed a ver­sa­tile 4x4 that’d do ev­ery­thing the dy­namic duo re­quired of it.

“I’m away for work a lot,” Shane told us. “I do a lot of work with the rail­way and it sees me liv­ing on the road some­times. I needed a tough 4x4, and there just weren’t too many op­tions to choose from. I’ve had a 100 Series and a Toy­ota Surf, and I loved the idea of a 79. Af­ter a spate of bad luck things started go­ing our way, so I reck­oned

Shane and Lisa lead a ver­sa­tile life, and they needed a ver­sa­tile 4x4 that’d do ev­ery­thing the dy­namic duo re­quired of it

Surf to turf, Shane’s 79 sees and does it all.

Sec­ond fuel fil­ter and bat­tery take up any spare un­der­bon­net space.

The 79’s work­ing class roots per­sist in the cabin. The bolt-in Jmacx coil con­ver­sion is one of the most in­no­va­tive 4x4 prod­ucts on the mar­ket.

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