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Posts posted by alainburon

  1. Something else I noticed as I started driving the car is that I could barely hear the 6x9 speakers I installed behind the seats. It seems like the sound was muffled due to the seats being in front of the speakers. The other issue is that the motor in this car is fairly loud and the stereo needs to compensate for that sound so I had to turn it up and at some level the speakers would get a bit distorted due to all the bass they needed to put out. My system is a JL Audio 6 channel 600 watt amp which runs four 6x9 JL Audio 3 way speakers, two are mounted on a panel by the taillights and the other 2 behind the seats. I also have two 6 ½” JL Audio speakers on the door panels.


    I spoke with the JL Audio support team and explained what components I was using as well as the car they were in and the locations of the speakers. They mentioned that I should replace the two 6x9’s behind the seats with a subwoofer and that would help tremendously since I would be able to run the Low Pass signals through the subwoofer and the High Pass signals through the remaining 4 speakers instead of high and low pass signals through all the speakers which is what’s happening now. That would give crisper highs, deeper bass without distorting the speakers. Since I did not want to build a subwoofer box due to the limited space I have in this car they suggested running two 6 ½” subwoofers in place of the 6x9’s behind the seats.


    So another project begins. I have to say JL Audio customer support is incredible, they calculated how much space I needed for each subwoofers and I built the enclosure to their recommednations. I removed the 6x9’s behind the seat and made wood panels to enclose each area. I put some L brackets on the wood panels and bolted them in place. Then used tons of silicone to ensure it was completely sealed. I had already put Dynomat in those areas so that helps eliminate the tin sound. Then I built a wood face panel to bolt the subwoofers in place since the holes I had for the 6x9’s were too big. I used foam behind the panel in order to eliminate any rattling and bolted the panel in place. Fitted everything and re-carpeted the panel. The sound difference is incredible, it blows me away how much bass comes out of these little subwoofers. I don’t listen to rap all the time so I don’t need a rolling boom box but certain songs require clear bass and these speakers deliver. Below are some before and after pictures as well as part of the process.

    Speakers Behind Seat.jpg

    Subwoofer Enclosure.jpg

    Subwoofer Panel.jpg


    Subwoofers 2.jpg

  2. On 5/15/2021 at 2:09 PM, NewZed said:


    Why didn't you just use the stock valve covers?  Didn't you still have to redo things with the taller Holley cover?


    Just curious.  What is the benefit of the Holley cover over the stock cover in the first place?

    jpndave is correct, the Holley valve covers are a lot cleaner look since the coils mount directly onto the valve cover which gets rid of the coil brackets. 

  3. Another issue I ran into is oil consumption. I would rive around 20 to 30miles and pull out 16 ounces of oil out of the catch can. After confirming the catch can was plumed properly by reaching out to the manufacturer the hunt for the problem began.


    Of course I had a lot of suggestions from the 6 AN lines I’m using in the catch can is too small, I have a broken piston ring, etc.. The guys that made the catch can (Elite Engineering) where the ones that told me what the problem was from the begging and they were right. It was the Holley valve covers.


    The baffles on the Holley valve covers are terrible, so you wind up sucking more oil than you should through them. Unfortunately my ignition coils were mil-spec wired in place and I did not want to have that redone so I tried one last thing with the Holley valve covers. I ordered a new set but their taller version which allows a bit more room between the rockers and the valve cover. I also purchased a driver’s side OEM valve cover and removed the baffle from it and had it fit on the Holley valve cover.


    Problem solved, drove 150 miles and pulled just a few drops of oil from the catch can. So please be aware of these issue with the Holley valve covers. I have attached some pictures of the differences in the baffles between the Holley and OEM.

    This is the OEM Valve Cover.


    This is the Holley Valve cover. Notice the difference in the baffles. Holley has more holes. 169616818_ValveCoversHolleyTall2.jpg.4313869fd07df5a8189cd2ec5bad777b.jpg

    These 2 pictures are the Holley valve cover modified to use the OEM baffles. 1578850454_ValveCoversHolleyTallModified.jpg.f8519854134252bd3d5183b9b56ec345.jpg368603829_ValveCoversHolleyTallModified2.jpg.1e901991f1d309958d91244a5278289a.jpg

  4. Yes, an "H" with AN fittings is exactly what the LOJ unit is, well I added the AN fittings to it. I put it between the water pump and the heater core. The only feature the LOJ unit offers is a port on the side for a Nissan water temperature sending unit which I'm not using anyways, I blocked mine with the plug they provided. Here are some pictures of some others that are available as well. The metal one is a Vintage Air unit and the other looks like something home made but it worked. 



  5. After researching countless hours and talking to everyone and their sister I decided to follow what LOJ Conversions suggested since it made a lot of sense to me. Not to mention some of the suggestions I was getting were just way out there. Like, remove the heads to check for blown head gasket etc..  According to LOJ the heater circuits on Chevy LS powered vehicles utilize a heater control valve that has an internal bypass. When the heat is off in a Chevy LS powered vehicle, coolant still flows through the heater hoses. You are not supposed to block the heater ports on your LS water pump, they must be looped to always allow flow. If flow is blocked in these ports, you will cause a pressure differential on your water pump impeller creating cavitation, resulting in aeration of your coolant and an overheating condition. The Datsun 280Z  system works a lot different than an LS power vehicle, it has 2 heater control valves that block the flow of coolant into the heater core, it has no bypass valve. One valve is operated by the heat/cool level and the other is operated via vacuum. So when you turn the system to heat both valves open and allow coolant to flow through the heater core and back to the water pump. When the heat is off then the path is blocked and creating the exact same problem LOJ is describing.


    So I did a little test, I ran the car until it got to its operating temperature which was between 215 and 220. Then I turned on the heater at the lowest fan setting this way the fan does not aid much in the cooling process and to my surprise the temperature dropped 10 degrees to 205 to 210. So I decided to purchase their LS Swap Heater Bypass Block since I’m not driving my car with the heat on all the time specially in Texas. I removed the hose barbs it came with, drilled it and tapped it to ½” NPT and fitted AN10 fittings. I installed it on the car and sure enough overheating is now gone completely. Car runs at 195 to 200 steadily. By the way I’m running a factory heater and A/C on this car. The A/C was always super cold before the swap and the heater worked well so I left it stock. No point trying to fix something that works well already.

    Heater Bypass Block 4.jpg

    Heater Bypass Block 3.jpg

    Heater Bypass Block 2.jpg

    Heater Bypass Block.jpg

  6. Thanks for the compliments.


    Well I have learned a lot about thermostats in the last 2 weeks and I wanted to share it in case someone runs into this problem. I also learned how so many people know so little about them, even the so called experts. Most people think the lower the temperature rating on the thermostat the cooler your car will run and that’s not actually true. Then you have others that think taking out the thermostat will overheat the car or cause it to run too cool, not true either. I was finally able to talk to a GM Engineer who was involved in designing thermostats and he set it straight once and for all. The purpose of the thermostat is to set a minimum operating temperature for an engine. In other words no matter what you do the temperature of the motor will not be lower than the thermostat rated temperature. It also helps in getting the car up to that temperature faster. Your cooling system is what sets the temperature your engine will operate at not your thermostat unless of course the thermostat is not working properly. LS engines were not designed to operate at 160 degrees, therefore he told me for starters replace the thermostat with the GM unit set at 187 degrees.


    What happens next proves his point. I removed the thermostat to replace it with the one he suggested. The one in the left is the Ligenfelter thermostat I had in the car. It’s a 160 degree thermostat, the one of the right is the AC Delco GM unit for a 2002 Camaro SS. This is a 187 degree unit. You can see the difference is quality between the 2 thermostats. I replaced the Ligenfelter unit with the GM unit and my temperature went down from 230 to between 215 and 220. Still not perfect but a big improvement. So I put a higher rated thermostat and the operating temperature went down. Why? Design, you can see the clear differences between the 2 thermostats. The Ligenfelter creates more of a restriction that the GM unit so even though it opens at 160 degrees the flow is reduced therefore not allowing the cooling system to do its job. Also the rear part of the thermostat has holes on one and not on the other as well as the spring tension. Now to see if I can lower the temperature even more.





  7. The car finally made it home a couple of week ago from a long trip at the body shop. Very happy with the work they did. Now the fun begins, sorting out all the issues. The car is getting a bit hot, gets to about 230 degrees. The transmission rear seal is leaking and the front tires are rubbing the fender. It never ends with this car. At least its home and I can work on it when I have time. 



  8. On 10/20/2020 at 11:26 PM, yiannit280z said:

    Thanks for the pics! with the vintage air condenser were you able to use the johns cars ac lines or did you need custom ones?

    Sorry for the late reply, I just saw this. The John's car lines are designed for a stock system. With the vintage air condenser you need to make custom lines. 

  9. 20 minutes ago, JMortensen said:

    There are straight vaned rotors and curved vane rotors. My guess is that Dave is selling the straight vaned type, which are not directional. If the actual part number shows curved vanes and Dave is saying that they're universal, that would surprise me.

    You are right, the ones Dave uses have straight vanes in the rears which is what I need to replace, his fronts are curved and have arrows showing the direction the need to go in. Willwoods slotted version of the rears Dave uses are curved vaned. Does the way the slots are cut on the rotor make a difference? Just wonder if those need to be directional as well. 

    12 minutes ago, G-Tech said:

    He buys plain rotors then has them slotted by someone else. Guessing it saves him money somehow, probably buying rotors in bulk. I like his stuff, i have his full brake kit for my 280zx (although i didnt know i was losing my parking brake till i was installing everything) but he has never been good at customer service. Not sure if he is too busy or what. 

    That could be it, maybe it saves him money doing it that way. The problem is how long it takes. He told me it would take several weeks to have that done when Wilwood has the same rotors already slotted in stock. Don't get me wrong I like his stuff as well specially the size of the rotors. 13" in the front and 12.2" in the rear helps fill in the wheel space nicely. Luckily I was able to get the parking brake option on mine.

  10. Thanks for the suggestions guys. I was able to reach Willwood and give them the casting numbers from the rotors and they were able to get me a replacement part number. I ordered them from Summit and should have them here tomorrow. Another thing that was odd is that Dave says he slots those rotors in house and they are not directional therefore you can interchange left from right. Wilwood says their slotted rotors are directional, they have a left and right side. 


    To say that I'm disappointed in Arizona Z is an understatement. I spoke with Dave yesterday again and he told me he would need to check to see if he had the rotors and would call me back, I never heard back from him again. That's 3 times I spoke with him and the told me the same thing, plus 2 emails. They just lost a loyal customer, I will NEVER buy from them again. I have all their control arms, brakes and other parts on my car so  spent some money there and to be treated the way I was is not acceptable. 


    I'm not sure what the heck is going on there but if anyone ever aske me about Arizona Z I would have to tell them to stay away and buy from a company that will provide support after the sale. That's my rant of the day......LOL

  11. I will try them again today before I start looking elsewhere. I have already sent 2 emails and spoke with Dave twice since Monday. He says he will call me back in a couple of hours and I never hear back. I have made it clear on my emails and phone calls that I need this ASAP. Not sure what's going on there. 

  12. Finally my car has paint again and this time the body work is done right. All that's left to do now is wetsand, buff the car and assembly. If you are in Texas DO NOT take your car to Richey Collision for any work. They were known to do great custom body work but after what they did to my car I would not spend a dime there. 

    New Paint Job 2.jpg

    New Piant Job.jpg

  13. I think it all boils down to money. How much are you willing to spend to do it right and have the peace of mind your car will not overheat and damage your engine. You can piece together components from different cars and make it work or you can call radiator builders that have engineers on their staff that will design a radiator for your specific set up. They take all you accessories into account, thickness of the condenser,  hp the car will be producing as well as how you will drive the car and design a radiator for you that will bolt right into the factory location and will cool your engine under any condition. Some people have super expensive turbo or stroker motors and want to cool it down with a $200 radiator but that's their choice. 


     My A/C blows super cold in 100 plus degree weather with the car sitting still. Here are some pictures of it, it was designed by Wizard Cooling. Highly recommend them if you decide to go that route. Here are a couple of pictures, before and after install.



    Radiator 1.JPG

    Cold Air Intake-2.JPG

  14. After looking for months for Inner Fender Liners I was able to find a complete set. However they were cracked in multiple places and some of the mounting holes were 2 sizes too big due to damage. That seems to be the norm with these parts since they are old and brittle. Finding a complete set it's a task all on its own. Finding a perfect set it's just about impossible. 


    I found a place that has a plastic welder and sent them the parts. They had a hard time welding the plastic but were able to get the job done and you can't see where they welded these parts. Now to finish to body work on this car and repaint it so I can get it on the road sometime this millennium. 

    Front Fender Liners-2.jpg

    Front Fender Liners.jpg

  15. I knew I had an issue with my fiberglass hood mounting flange (where it bolts to the hinge) hitting the cold air intake. The mounting flange is super thick in comparison to the stock hood and it hits the intake. Some say why not redo the cold air intake but I just like the way it came out so that's not an option for me. I have been trying to come up with solutions and still use the same hood since I like the scoop. The scoop is not massive plus I don't see this type of hood on a lot of S30's which is a big plus for me. Nothing worse than hearing, I know someone that has one just like it after you spend tons of money trying to make your car unique. 


    So I decided to purchase an used stock steel hood and have it modified to look just like the fiberglass hood. This is the progress so far. 








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