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wingwalker

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wingwalker last won the day on July 17

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About wingwalker

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    walla walla, WA11

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  1. Michael, Thanks for the comments, but when I made one singe change, problems cascaded. I had spoken with someone at Vintage Air, the manufacturer of the AC system I will install, and he suggested that if the compressor is placed on the passenger side, routing of hoses will be easier. So without enough thought, I decided to switch the standard GM configuration. Main issue is that the valve covers are of course staggered, and it is the driver's side that is forward. I do have the long water pump and a newer, shorter version of the alternator, but at you can see in one of the photos I posted on Feb. 23, the back of the alternator hits the valve cover when I attempt to tuck it in. And from there the issue cascaded. Hindsight is wonderful. Had I stuck with GM's configuration--alternator on the passenger side and compressor on the driver's--my life would have gone easier. I have, I think, got it solved, but such is hot rodding--which is what we are doing when we swap engines. It has been far too hot in my shop to get much work done, but I am anxious to tackle the remaining issues and see what other trouble I have created for myself. I want to get this car back on the road.
  2. The engine is in and bolted to the front mounts. And it appears my modified brackets will work. Whew! Here are a few photos.
  3. Grog and Twisted46, The alternator is 65 amps and I won't be running a huge stereo amp, so I believe 8 gauge will be okay. It think total it will be about a five-foot run. At the most, six. And I have been using the JTR book, but because this car had been hacked--not just wiriing, but on many other levels, the book is for me just a starting point. I think I have the correct wires for the HEI. At least I hope so. In a separate post today, I show some photos of us stuffing the engine onto its mounts. Feels good to have most of the wiring behind me, and the engine now bolted to the front mounts. (The transmission right now sits on a box. Fitting the rear mount will be next.)
  4. A young man comes to our little hobby farm about once a month to help with chores that my wife and I have fallen behind on or stuff that takes a lot of muscle-power (such as digging up burst sprinkler lines). He was here yesterday, I had finally finished wiring for the V8 (wiring hell, it was), and I realized with his help I might get the engine and transmission into the car. Finally. Our first attempt was a bust. My hoist could not get the engine close enough to the mounts. So, while he went about other chores, I lengthened the arm and removed the hood hinges and the torsion bars that were interfering with the hoist. And I pulled off the lower panel of the front valance, which was also holding back the hoist. Then we tried again. There was still a little shortfall, but with some mighty pushing, we got the engine in and bolts into the front mounts. Whew! I feel great, even though there is still a mountain of little chores before this old Z will once more be on the road. Here are a few photos.
  5. Richard and JHM--thanks. I appreciate the input. As I mentioned, I ordered (from Jegs) a more robust 8-gauge wire kit, and when it arrives, I'll finish that bit. Right now I confused as hell about the wire to drive the tach. I have a blue wire separated and labeled for that, but I'm pretty sure it's wrong. I want to get this right, because I really don't want to cook the tach. -------------------- Okay, I just tested the blue wire to the tach resistor, and sure enough, they have continuity. So, I'll attach the blue wire to the negative on the HEI when the engine goes in and see what happens. The JTR book says to turn the brass adjustment on the back of the tach 45 degrees, but the text doesn't mention which way. I'll leave that step until after I have the car running, since this may have already been done (it previously had a SBC in it). Getting closer.
  6. Richard and JHM--thanks. I appreciate the input. As I mentioned, I ordered (from Jegs) a more robust 8-gauge wire kit, and when it arrives, I'll finish that bit. Right now I confused as hell about the wire to drive the tach. I have a blue wire separated and labeled for that, but I'm pretty sure it's wrong. I want to get this right, because I really don't want to cook the tach.
  7. Okay, without any feedback encouraging me to take the unconventional path, I will carry this feed-wire the long way around. But to avoid voltage drop, I have ordered 8-gauge to replace this 10-gauge wire. When It arrives, I'll route it around the front and be done with wiring hell. Finally.
  8. Here's the latest on the bracket saga. I tried three sets sourced by Summit Racing, and when the third set (made by Grove) was going to hit stuff, I bit the bullet and fabricated (actually, I modified the last set I got). The folks at Summit were super about the returns, but when the third set didn't work, I felt embarrassed. After all, three times! I used 1/4-inch aluminum plate to make the modified parts, and used as many parts as I could of Grove's stuff. The compressor is off now, but with both in place, I measured and measured, and I am now certain--well, almost certain--that these will work. Here are some photos.
  9. I've been working on my 280 Z and will test-fit the engine (carbureted Vortec 350) once I am able to bundle up this bird's nest of wires. Because the guys at Vintage Air suggested I mount the compressor on the passenger side, I have my alternator on the driver side. And that means the wire feeding the alternator needs to run a long way. As you see in the photo, I was about to send it back to the firewall, across and then forward to feed the alt. But a few minutes ago I noticed that if I run it along the inner side of the cross-member, it is a pretty straight (and much shorter) shot. I have drawn in an arrow to the wire in question. Once that's decided, I can begin re-wrapping the harness. (By the way that relay closest to the firewall will be either for the fuel pump or for the electric fan--I haven't decided (and I'll take feedback on that issue, too).
  10. Capernix, jhm and Llave, Thank you all three for the responses. Jhm, I have rotated both brackets and, yes, it appears they can be modified so that both the compressor and alternator will be located lower. I'm thinking of dropping the engine into the bay and onto the mounts to determine just where I have room. Then I'll mark up the brackets for mods. After that, I'll take everything back where it is easier to work with the engine on a stand. Likely I'll find a few other issues to deal with while it is temporarily in there. Llave, a smaller alternator may also be part of the solution. But the size of the compressor, I think, is fixed. I plan on using a Vintage Air setup, and the system that will fit under the dash uses a Sanden 508. The 508 is a bit larger even than the 507 I have on hand, and that thing is larger than the alternator. Probably I should start worrying about it interfering with the headers. But I'll wait until the whole mess is in the engine bay. There is an answer, I know there is. I'll have to wait until the weather warms a bit before I hoist the engine. The part of my shop where the Z lives was at 14 degrees this morning and it hasn't warmed much since. I've been driven back into the house (where I should be working on my income tax filing--but, yuk, I'd rather brave the cold).
  11. So, I sent the ICT brackets back, and Summit Racing's tech support guy suggested I talk with the Vintage Air guys (because I will be installing their system). The Vintage Air tech gave me parts numbers and I ordered them from Summit. They arrived in two shipments, with the alternator kit arriving Wednesday. I've bolted it in place, and once more, I think I am in trouble as far as fitting into the engine bay goes. It does indeed pull the brackets in close to the centerline of the engine, but wow, they put it up in the air. My measurements seem to show very severe conflict with the hood. And the compressor kit arrived yesterday, and clearly it will do the same. Once again the issues are: 1. Engine has Vortec heads with tall valve covers 2. I need the compressor on the passenger side, and alternator on driver side 3. It all needs to fit into the engine bay of a 280Z with a small-block (long water pump) engine sitting on JTR mounts. Please help me on this. This problem has to have been solved dozens of times. Photos of the latest bracket below: The issue of clearance with the valve cover can be cured with a mini alternator, but I suspect that the compressor will have a less-easily solved issue.
  12. Okay, as promised, here's the update. The ICT brackets put the alternator and compressor out too far. There is just over 31 inches between strut towers in the engine bay, and these brackets put the alternator to compressor distance out 32.5 inches. And with the JTR mounts, the engine is offset, which means on the passenger side, there is no hope of clearing. So, back to square one. I looked at the March options, and the alternator bracket will work. Nullbound's installation looks very nice. But I'd like to have the alternator on the driver side so that the compressor will be on the pass side, allowing a cleaner path for hoses. And I cannot find a March option that will do those things. Yikes, this has been done many times. There is an answer, but so far I'm lost.
  13. Thanks, JHM. I'll post results after the brackets arrive and I then do a test fit of the engine in the car. Fingers crossed.
  14. Thanks, JHM. These are ICT Billet brackets, and I went ahead and ordered them. I was assured by the vendor they would attach to the Vortec engine okay, so the fit in the engine bay will be the next unknown. For the pair, I'll save almost $50 if they work. I did find drawings with dimensions of both these and the Alan Grove brackets, and in comparison with the Grove equivalents, these appear to be within a half inch different in both side and height. So, we'll see. I'll post the results. I agree that an engine without all the stuff hanging from it will be easier to get in, but I want to test fit all the stuff while it is still accessible. That includes ensuring the pulley alignment is spot on and the belt sizes are determined. Just a lot easier with the engine at a nice working height.
  15. I am about to order this bracket and a similar one on the passenger side for an a/c compressor. But I worry they may not clear the sides of the engine bay. The engine is a Vortec 350. The car is a '77 280Z. If not these brackets, which? I have finally cut away and patched up the rust that grew under the batter tray, welded up excess holes in the engine compartment and have a JTR kit. Following the JTR book, I am now "dressing the engine," as the author puts it. So I want to attach stuff like these brackets and adjust belts before setting the engine in place.
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