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CTeo
CTeo New Reader
2/6/22 12:02 a.m.

Alright, I need to get me one of those ground clamps, I'm tired of always trying to ground on a rusty flange or find a hanger to weld exhaust pipe. 

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
2/8/22 9:19 a.m.

She's finally on the road! 

 

New shoes and tires, definitely needs some low. Anyone with a 280Z cut springs here? Figured it would be a good temp solution until I can build some coilovers.

Specs: 15x8 +0 Rota TBTs 

205/50R15 Falken Azenis RT615K+ all round

 

 

 

demnted
demnted New Reader
2/8/22 9:32 a.m.

RE: the low

option 1 add heavy speaker box and big booty erm. passenger

birdmayne
birdmayne Reader
2/8/22 10:18 a.m.
demnted said:

RE: the low

option 1 add heavy speaker box and big booty erm. passenger

Or go the route of mine and run blown out struts / springs.  Mine sits on the bump stops when it's empty. Doesn't make for the most pleasant ride though.

StripesSA1
StripesSA1 Reader
2/8/22 10:46 p.m.
papamilad said:

She's finally on the road! 

 

New shoes and tires, definitely needs some low. Anyone with a 280Z cut springs here? Figured it would be a good temp solution until I can build some coilovers.

Specs: 15x8 +0 Rota TBTs 

205/50R15 Falken Azenis RT615K+ all round

Man, those 205/50's just suit that Z's shape perfectly 

Agent98
Agent98 Reader
2/9/22 11:46 p.m.

Nice progress...keep an eye on the fuel pump going bad (car randomly shuts off when warmed up)and the water pump (a few drips then the whole thing disintegrates) I've had 4 z cars still cannot believe the small extent of rust here...

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
2/11/22 10:03 a.m.

In reply to Agent98 :

Thanks! Duly noted, I've got a new water pump and thermostat to put in. Seems the tstat might be stuck open, temp gauge never really reaches half way but none of the gauges seem particularly consistent anyways lol. Will probably shoot to put it in soon.

I've noticed the car has some issues with rear end bump steer? Bumps cause some pretty unsettling shimmies. My guess is shot bushings but wouldn't mind hearing any thoughts from fellow S30 owners. Also the suspension is pretty crazy but I'm guessing shot OEM shocks/dampers are gonna be the culprit there 

birdmayne
birdmayne Reader
2/11/22 10:28 a.m.

Blown bushings will cause some wandering. Every surface change, crack or bump is an adventure in my Z. There are a number of urethane options available, but rubber components are getting pretty scarce and hard to find. 

I have a few sources / people that have really good Z stuff, if you ever need some help. Shoot me a PM anytime. 

Agent98
Agent98 Reader
2/11/22 2:54 p.m.

There's three mounting points, a differential front mount like a transmission mount, a mustache curved bar, and a transverse rod like a pan hard rod. If the front mount is broken it will also clunk really bad on acceleration. The others have bushings. These cars have very pronounced rear squat tendencies Even back in 1978 when the last one was new, so any worn out mounting bushing equals squat and squirt to the side.

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
2/11/22 6:36 p.m.
birdmayne said:

Blown bushings will cause some wandering. Every surface change, crack or bump is an adventure in my Z. There are a number of urethane options available, but rubber components are getting pretty scarce and hard to find. 

I have a few sources / people that have really good Z stuff, if you ever need some help. Shoot me a PM anytime. 

That would be nice, it's getting hard to find serviceable used bits for these things.

I'll keep an eye out for the front diff mount, there's a pretty massive rear end clunk when you jab the throttle

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
2/21/22 6:32 p.m.

Quick afternoon project getting the horn to work. Couldn't find all of these little plastic stand offs so 5 minutes in CAD and an hour of printing later we have horn bits. Had to make do for the rest of the parts as well, found a spring with the right OD and cut to length and used some grommets I cut down to act as the spacer for the ring behind the horn button.

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
2/27/22 12:50 p.m.

Really been enjoying having the car on the road the last few weeks but I think its time to address the worn out suspension. Got the thing on jackstands again and inspection leads me to the diagnosis that every bushing is pretty much shot (as you would expect for a 46 year old car). Jacking the rear up by the diff I would watch the diff rise a solid inch before the car would so I would guess that is the source of my clunking. Also seems like both rear shocks have now super-exploded since driving it around since theres fluid everywhere under the car. I've already got the entire rear more or less disassembled but didn't take many pics throughout the process. Everything went reasonably smoothly except for two bits. The driveshaft was a huge pain to unbolt since the nuts hide right on top of the diff mount so theres no good way to get to them without removing the diff mount but the diff mount is also a pain to take out since because you cant get a socket over the lower bolt head since its partially obscured by the mount itself! Since I'm replacing the diff mount with a TechnoVersions top mount style I just went ahead and demolished it with a cutoff wheel to get better access to the bolt so I can let a jack support the diff and unbolt the driveshaft finally. Then of course I'm sure any S30 owner is familiar with the fabled spindle pin for the rear control arms. Getting them both out was miserable, hours of torching, hammering, torching some more etc. Both finally came out but with the threaded ends mushroomed beyond repair so unfortunately that's gonna be another parts order here. I'll be doing full poly bushings (Energy Suspension), Vogtland lowering springs, and KYB dampers so the car should drive pretty damn good in a few weeks! 

But first some pics of the glorious few weeks I had semi-dailying her.

Even managed to take her up to some north Georgia mountains too when the weather was nice! Most fun car I've ever driven, really excited to have the suspension in good shape soon.

 

Little before shot of the rear end taken apart.

birdmayne
birdmayne Reader
2/27/22 12:54 p.m.

Interested to see how low the Vogtland springs are.

maj75 (Forum Supporter)
maj75 (Forum Supporter) Dork
2/28/22 11:21 a.m.

The blower motors for these cars weren't that strong.  The plastic wheel gets brittle and strips on the shaft so the shaft spins but the wheel just sits there.  Do a Google because there is a modern blower motor that fits with a little fiddling.  I did this to my '75 but I can't recall which application the blower motor came from.  I had to de-pin and swap the original plug onto the wires and use some extra weatherstrip but it bolted in and works well.  It was possible, at least on my '75 do do the job without removing the glovebox.

classicJackets (FS)
classicJackets (FS) SuperDork
2/28/22 11:44 a.m.

In reply to maj75 (Forum Supporter) :

Awesome info!

birdmayne
birdmayne Reader
2/28/22 2:43 p.m.

In reply to maj75 (Forum Supporter) :

88-91 Honda Civic is a common blower motor upgrade. 

99 Kia Sportage is also pretty easy, from what I've read. 

1991 Honda Civic / 1994 Accord wiper motor upgrade also looks easy. 

Don't forget the 05 -07 Chevy Equinox power steering upgrade (takes a little more skill). Or the Prius Electronic power steering. 

Toyota 4x4 brake calipers on Honda rotors up front. 

Lots of off make upgrades for the S30 available

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
3/6/22 7:07 p.m.

Been putting in some more work into suspension refresh. Got everything apart and just working my way through painting parts until springs arrive and I can get to reassembly. Luckily this car has a much smaller number of bushings than my Z32 when I did all the poly stuff their. Really just 8 that are a pain (2 per RCA, 1 per FCA, and 2 'mustache bar' bushings that support the rear of the diff). I found the easiest way to remove them was to hole saw the core out and use a sawzall to cut two slits in the sleeves (dont need to remove the mustache bar sleeves). If you go all the way through the sleeve you'll nick the control arm a bit but it makes it far easier to remove. I'm using some Rustoleum Appliance Epoxy to paint everything, this stuff is pretty magic with how nice it goes on.

 

Que pic dump:

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) UltimaDork
3/6/22 8:50 p.m.

Nice work.  Agreed on that Appliance paint being great to spray.

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
3/30/22 1:31 p.m.

A brief reprise from car work to take a road trip to Colorado and I'm back. Pretty jealous of y'all for getting to live by some pretty sweet landscapes.

Side note: I should do a build thread for the daily, got some big plans for it long term but nothing crazy yet.

 

And on to some 280 progress. At this point all suspension bits are painted and ready to go on. Working my way through reinstallation. I also opted to just remove each strut/hub assembly to make spring install easier. 

It's real fun looking at a nice pile of freshly painted metal.

First part to go in so far is the diff. I'm replacing the factory bottom mount style mount with a top mount version from TechnoVersions. It just uses a universal poly trans mount from Energy Suspension along with a bracket to mount the diff from the top. This eliminates the need for the factory limit strap and puts the mount under compression during loading rather than tension.

Additionally, I took the steering rack out to clean and regrease as both bellows were basically nonexistent. Unfortunately the moog bellows I ordered are way too big on the inner ID for the rack. I think I'm going to 3D print some split rings to bring the diameter up to fit the boots properly and add a bit of silicone to keep things sealed.

I also began to take the struts apart. The rubber insulators that bolt to the top hats aren't quite in the best shape (cracks starting to form) but they're usable I think. New ones are insanely expensive so I'm going to go ahead and put them back in but I've taken some measurements so I can try and diy my own later. This also gives me the added benefit of being able to lower/level the car a little more if need be. I'm thinking I can water jet a steel plate with studs welded in place and some pipe to center over the rubber stop/bearing. McMaster also sells poly discs I can use to drill some holes in to slide over the studs.

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
3/31/22 10:40 a.m.

More progress! Rear end is starting to take shape. Got the springs and dampers in, started hooking up axles and bolt up the control arms. Struggling a bit to get the outer portion of the control arms onto the spindle pin housing, the bushings seem a bit too long. Internet searching seems to show this as a common issue. Might have to shave them down a bit.

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
4/3/22 7:20 p.m.

Not a picture heavy update but I'm done!*

*I ordered 2 left side tie rod ends so I can't drive it until the right one is here but close enough.

The rear control arms were really a giant pain. Took me hours to get them in but finally figured out the method. The bushings oversized total by about 2.5mm so basically impossible to slide over. What I did was use a flap disc to bevel the leading edge and removed the sleeve prior to install. Start one side of the arm then take a thin putty knife and use it as a ramp to guide the other. A rubber mallet was all I needed here to tap the arm into place. From here you can hammer the sleeves in and pry around with a flat head till they're lined up enough to punch the spindle in with some wood and a hammer. Make sure to use lots of anti seize and remember the pin notch isn't centered.

The rest of the suspension stuff is pretty straightforward. Everything went in without a problem

Pic of it on the ground. Can no longer remove my low pro jack without some wood under the tires so I'm gonna say we turned the needle towards 'dirty nasty low' at the least. I'd prefer a little lower personally but it looks good and hopefully it'll settle a bit lower.

Also pic I took of one of the front dampers. Anyone ever seen one so blown the casing collapsed in on itself?

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
4/6/22 11:37 p.m.

Back on the road! Car feels amazing now with the exception of some fairly substantial increase in diff noise. Should hopefully quiet down once I got carpet back there. The poly bushing feel great and you can't hear the squeaking over all the other noises anyways. Only bushings I kept rubber are the tension rod bushings (I don't like putting poly in places that need a lot of compliance to function) and the front sway bar mounts because the kit didn't come with them for whatever reason.

 

My "fix" for the oversized steering rack bellows. A little skinny and loose so ill probably reprint a bit tighter.

 

Also my ghetto exhaust hanger broke off and I don't have a working welder so we're getting even ghetto-er

 

Next up: finish the interior, pop a stereo in, put my 6-1 headers in

Gambit
Gambit New Reader
4/7/22 8:44 a.m.

Dont know if you want to keep it super light weight, but hushmat or whatever name brand it is works like a charm under carpet. especially with no real sound deadening 

papamilad
papamilad New Reader
4/8/22 7:08 a.m.

In reply to Gambit :

I have a bunch of knock off dynamat I've been using but I'll definitely keep that in mind, thanks.

Also more pics cause this thing looks sweet

Gambit
Gambit New Reader
4/8/22 8:39 a.m.

In reply to papamilad :

offbrand works just as well in my limited experience. love the barebones look

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