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Michael last won the day on June 15 2019

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About Michael

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    was SW Ohio, now LA

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  1. Remove the valve covers and inspect the rockers and pushrods. The latest malady sounds like what happens with a "wiped" flat tappet cam and bent pushrods. Also manually turn the crank-bolt and check that the valves are opening correctly (that whole 18436572 firing-order thing). Re-do the "quarter turn trick" if it's a hydraulic cam, and re-set the lash if it's a mechanical cam. It's conceivable that the distributor was installed 180 degrees backwards, so to speak. That is, spark hits the #1 piston as it's coming up on the... exhaust stroke, instead of the intake stroke.
  2. Turn everything off, put transmission in neutral and spin the crank (via crank pulley bolt) with the appropriate socket wrench (7/8", if memory serves) and either a breaker-bar or a section of pipe engaged with the wrench handle. Spin the crank for a full revolution. It is possible that the crank is seized, whence the starter can't muster enough torque to break the seizing. If the crank is indeed seized, that's problem #1. If it spins OK by hand, then we'll return to the starter problem. A vigorous person should have no difficulty turning the crank with the spark plugs installe
  3. Welcome! Several of us are in the LA area. Perhaps we should have an in-person meet, 'rona-permitting? If you car doesn't presently run, and you're unsure of re-start procedures, it may help to post in the "general troubleshooting" sub-forum. The usual culprits are of course fuel-air-spark, assuming that the valvetrain and so forth are healthy, and that the compression is OK. 4L80 is an unusual choice, to go behind a small-block. Was the original intended for drag racing?
  4. To affix aluminum plates to the transmission tunnel, as a completely new feat for me. Isn't the more common approach a "blowproof" bellhousing? Something like this: https://www.holley.com/brands/lakewood/products/drivetrain/bellhousings/ . These are unfortunately very heavy (maybe 40 lbs), but aren't they required by the NHRA?
  5. Welcome back! Yes, it's been a long and choppy 21+ years. Perhaps we ought to have an "old member" section, for reminiscences and such? I will bring my hot-water bottle and wool blanket. An important lesson is regarding having the right environment. Insufficient garage space, or too rigid of a state regulatory burden, all conspire to sap motivation. Or in some parts of the country, where land is plentiful and regulations are forgiving, the climate is brutal, and for half of the year it's unpleasant to drive a sports car, or even to be in the garage. The result? We have to awa
  6. Have a look at the "suspension" chapter of the venerable JTR V8 conversion manual, where there's a discussion on re-drilling the K-member to move the LCA outboard (and slightly upward). There's also been discussion suggesting (sorry, the context escapes me) the benefits of a "slightly" wider track in the front than in the rear. As to the 5x114.3 vs. 4x114.3 dilemma, both aesthetics and wheel selection-options suggest the benefits of swapping to 5-lug in the front, if that's already been done in the rear. Given the cost of the Ray's wheels, the additional cost of new 5-lug hubs (a
  7. Having spent 20+ years trying to do it myself, I realized that my skills are woefully inadequate. I've also garnered a respect for professional workmanship, even if it's costly. The frustration is that most pros are into the show-circuit... $20K paint jobs and that sort of thing. I've also learned to never argue with a seasoned pro... that's one context in which it is assuredly not the case, that "The customer is always right". But you're quite right about the importance of patience. Today Datsuns are expensive. In another 20 years, the generation that idolized them in their y
  8. Not to range too far of topic, but that's a 150-pound block. I chose those attributes intentionally, to result in surprisingly light engine. It's the sort of thing that powers the winners of the Hot Rod Drag Week contests... things like 1962 Novas that weigh 2100 pounds. But the big-block people or the Nova people won't countenance one of that them thar Datsuns... and vice versa. Just like it was, 21 years ago, when this site first started. The point is, that great things are possible by dispensing with OEM stuff and replacing it with high-end, specialized parts, tested and ins
  9. Not to be provocative, but I wonder how much of the price-escalation is from a cultural affinity to "keeping it Japanese" or "all Nissan"? In other words, if the engine were a Donovan aluminum big-block 572, with AFR heads and a big mechanical roller cam, backed by a T-56 transmission and a Ford 9" center-section (duly converted to independent half-shafts), then might we find ourselves with a car that cost $100K to build, but only fetches $40K at auction?
  10. Plausible and intriguing, but would the bending stresses (cantilevered load) be acceptable? Miata 15x8 wheels are typically around 36mm offset, whereas a Z, if I'm not mistaken, would be 0 offset (4.5" backspacing on an 8" wheel... that is, 9" lip-to-lip, is 0 offset). So that's a 36mm-thick cylindrical slab of aluminum, drilled 4x114.3 and counterbored to accept lug nuts and the head of a socket-wrench (what is it, 21 mm?) ... and then drilled and studded at 4x100, to accept the Miata wheel. 1" adaptors: https://usadapters.com/collections/4x114-3-4x4-5-wheel-adapters-
  11. If you've done the 5-lug conversion, the world is your proverbial oyster (at least as regards wheels). There appear to be lots of OZ wheels in 5x114.3. It's us poor 4-lug schlubs who lack options. Were I to have done the 5-lug conversion, I'd just order some Weld Draglites (https://www.weldwheels.com/street-strip-wheels/draglite.html) in a custom offset. Problem solved. Maybe this is classic paralysis-by-analysis, but here's the problem: 1. Car has been sitting for decades, and tires are completely unsafe, even for pulling out of the driveway. 2. Cho
  12. There is of course the adage of getting that for which one pays. I don't expect forged wheels for cast-wheel prices. The quandary however is that even among comparably built and comparably designed wheels, there's wide range in weight and price. One would like to get "the best" within a certain class of product, realizing that "best" will differ between the different classes... or applications. Another example is Konig wheels. Several appeal to me, in price, design and even weight. But good luck getting a 4x114.3 pattern with the right offset for a Z. Another example is 6UL (
  13. This is precisely why a crowd-sourcing approach of gathering data - even anecdotal data - is so important. Until brands build a reliable track-record, we can only rely on word-of-mouth. By way of example, I bought a "Central Machinery" drill press from Harbor Freight Tools, about 20 years ago. It still works great! Best $150 that I ever spent on a tool. But the purchase was blind... no knowledge, not even anecdotal data. I dislike Rota for two reasons. First, they're heavily advertised, which to me suggests more sizzle than steak. Second, they tend to be
  14. It occurred to me, that after thirteen and a half years, a reply might be judicious. Or at least amusing.... The vendor is/was called "Cam Motion", from their "low lash mechanical roller" line. A modern internet search reveals this: https://cammotion.com/low-lash-solid-roller ... but that's for LS-series engines, and not for Mark-IV big blocks. I can't find anything about big-blocks on their current web site. Back in the day (winter of 2006-2007), the part number was L2402-2501-12+4. That's 239/249 deg @0.050”. Lift is 0.642”/0.646”, 112 LSA, installed +4 deg. Sp
  15. Any updates on this? Those Jongbloeds are beautiful wheels, but what of cost, weight - and most importantly. fitment? A quick search reveals that just over the past year, we've had multiple threads on "Help, all of the Datsun wheel links are now 10+ years old, and there's no comprehensive spreadsheet anyway". Then there's the inevitable question of stock springs (cut or otherwise... assumption is that the spring perch is NOT relocated) vs. coilovers. The result is inevitably... inconclusive.
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