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VG30ET Swap Into s130

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Hey all, I was reading a post from G.I.Jonas from 2007 about a vg30dett swap into a 280 and I was reading through it trying to gather as much info about the swap before I started posting asking about this. So I have a 79 280zx and an 86 300zx, the 300 is wrecked frame damage wont be fixed ever again but I'm lucky cause the engine didn't take any damage aside from the radiator. blocks fine everything's golden on it. I have a real tight budget but a lot of willing people to help me with this build with a lot of skills, really skilled welders that are close friends and do good work for ridiculously cheap. But anyhow I wanted to originally boost on my l28 but I found out I have the n42 block and n47 head and that not the build I wanted, I wanted the f54 and p90a build but didn't have the stuff. Now I came up with crazy idea that everyone agreed they wanted to help me with, taking everything I can from my wrecked 300 and throwing it into the 280. So on that note the post from gi was on a vg30dett I have the vg30et in my 300 low miles strong engine and trans, I haven't done a swap like this before so I wanted to ask everyone on here what they think I need to do, G.Is post didn't have much info just picture and explanations not what he needed to change etc. I read that the stock steering needed to be changed cause it wont work but that's about it. I got someone who can do the custom mounts but what I'm trying to figure out is what all I need to do. This is what I'm assuming.

 

Custom Mounts

Wiring harness

Steering

Differential

Axels?

Transmission mounts?

Ecu from 300

Custom driveshaft? or can I use the one off the 300?

 

I'm just shooting to complete the swap on what motor, trans, parts I have off my 300 not shooting for performance build yet just getting the swap done. What else should I look into? Where should I start? What should I keep in mind when planning this out. Like I said I got the people to help and I have the tools. I'm also thinking I need to figure the measurements for creating the mounts. Any other ideas on what I should do. If someone could reply with something to help me out that would be awesome. Thank you all!

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There's always improved weight distribution and space to put a huge turbo ... but the better question is the hp goal? the vg will be cheaper to build up to a point, but if you aren't really going over 300hp then it's probably not worth the effort

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IMO . Too much work for very little gain . Probably better to use your Z31 electronic parts to boost the I6 . I mean , 2.8L vs 3.0L . 

Not really sure what you mean. How would it help?

 

There's always improved weight distribution and space to put a huge turbo ... but the better question is the hp goal? the vg will be cheaper to build up to a point, but if you aren't really going over 300hp then it's probably not worth the effort

The hp goal is around 300 anyways. I'm shooting for something new I'm losing my license for a year too many tickets so I've got nothing but time so why not build something

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300 HP goal is doable with the I6 turbo . Like i said  , too much work to do a VGET swap and for a very little gain . The I6 is easier to work on than a V6 and you don't have to worry about doing timing belt every 60k . I would swap the Z31 computer system and turbo your I6 , that's my opinion . If you are going to do a swap then do a V8 swap , fab labor is about the same . I have an 84 turbo and a 91 NA , I hate working on them , especially the Z32 , the Z32 getting an LS soon . My LS conversion S30 and S130 are easier to work on . 

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300 HP goal is doable with the I6 turbo . Like i said  , too much work to do a VGET swap and for a very little gain . The I6 is easier to work on than a V6 and you don't have to worry about doing timing belt every 60k . I would swap the Z31 computer system and turbo your I6 , that's my opinion . If you are going to do a swap then do a V8 swap , fab labor is about the same . I have an 84 turbo and a 91 NA , I hate working on them , especially the Z32 , the Z32 getting an LS soon . My LS conversion S30 and S130 are easier to work on . 

I see what your saying now, the only problem is the n42 block I think has damage. I sold my 280 to someone then I bought it back from him. An he gave me my old parts to it and so on so fourth when I sold it to him I threw a rod and he said he got rid of the original block and put a new block in supposedly but somehow I feel like that isn't true and he used the same block my rod went out in. I haven't even pulled it apart yet to check and see what he's done but it smokes horribly out the filter of the valve cover so im assuming to much oil is getting by the pistons and burning it off, blowby I think. And if that's why im gonna assume that he just reused the block I had originally. So until I pull it apart I wont know.

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Start with the engine placement. Keep the 300zx engine and trans together and use the shifter location to position engine. Build mounts accordingly. If you have ball and knuckle steering, see if you have interferance with your proposed engine position. If you want to swap to rack and pinion steering, you will need to swap steering columns. Figure out drive shaft lengths, custom maybe required. Don't spend time on differential yet, save for after it's running. Use the 300zx ecu and harness, it will be an almost direct replacement for the 280zx engine harness. FMS will direct you to the subtle differences between the two.

 

Should be straight forward. Get it running then mods. One thing at a time prevents project abandonment.

 

Start a build thread.

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There've been a 3-4 people on here, including me that've swapped the VG30ET into the S30. Two documented ones (inc. me again) in to the later 280Z (although my pictures are AWOL at the moment). Custom engine mounts are required but were not hard. Exhaust routing/turbo placement is difficult but there are a few options, the steering rack being the main point of consideration.

 

If the transmission mounts are the same as the 280Z, it just bolts on. For me, the 71b driveshaft fit with my 71c (z31) transmission and 280Z R200 without any modifications. That's what determined engine placement. I used the Z31t driver side engine mount and just made a wedge to change the angle to mate it with the 280Z crossmember. The other side required the mount to wrap around the alternator mount block.

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Everything about making power is cheaper and more reliable with the VG...the L just has the nostalgia to it - and a mean sound. 300hp on a turbo SOHC VG is literally just a front mount, exhaust and boost controller. haha Then on top of that, its a good bit lighter and can be mounted entirely behind the axle for improved weight balance....plus cheap and easy 3.3L options......better heads, stronger internals etc.

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If you decide against the L28 then consider a LSx, I'm putting a LS3 into my 280ZX right now and the only sort of problem is the exhaust system on the driver's side getting tangled up with the steering shaft. Way better than an antique VG30ET, more power without the expense and trouble involved with a turbocharger. Been there..........

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If you decide against the L28 then consider a LSx, I'm putting a LS3 into my 280ZX right now and the only sort of problem is the exhaust system on the driver's side getting tangled up with the steering shaft. Way better than an antique VG30ET, more power without the expense and trouble involved with a turbocharger. Been there..........

 

A antique VG30E (non turbo) has the same hp/liter as a LS1...and the euro spec VG30E (non turbo) has more hp/liter. Hows that make you feel?

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It's all about power to weight, a decent LSx will piss all over a VG30E in that test. And not lose out in compactness either, another important consideration here.

 

Without NISMO heads the VG is a dog, unfortunately. The limitations imposed by it's design just stop development dead, valve lift and size, inlet capacity, all the elements required of a high power engine just can't be attained without NISMO heads as a starting point.

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It's all about power to weight, a decent LSx will piss all over a VG30E in that test. And not lose out in compactness either, another important consideration here.

 

Without NISMO heads the VG is a dog, unfortunately. The limitations imposed by it's design just stop development dead, valve lift and size, inlet capacity, all the elements required of a high power engine just can't be attained without NISMO heads as a starting point.

 

Oh, I would get SO pilloried as Satan Incarnate at "another site" for speaking that truth!

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A antique VG30E (non turbo) has the same hp/liter as a LS1...and the euro spec VG30E (non turbo) has more hp/liter. Hows that make you feel?

OK, so the VG is 3.0 Liters

The LS1 is 5.7 Liters? 5.4?

 

So that means, for less effort, you can bolt in at LEAST 1.8X the horsepower...

 

What was the point here again? Was this supposed to somehow justify the VG swap? I think that went in the "con" column, D'OH!

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One thing with a LSx conversion, with a right driver anyway, is fitting driver's side extractors, very tight and have to be custom which cost's a bomb of course. Tremec TKO fits in the tunnel fine but the shift lever ends up too far forward so the opening has to be modded. But other than those two, pretty straight forward and well worth it IMHO.

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