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280zx's with Ls swaps

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On 10/5/2020 at 6:06 PM, @1quickZX said:

Hello, I have an 82 ZX that I am getting ready to do an LS swap on. I have done a 76 Z before with the help of JTR but as you stated I can’t find much help for the ZX swap. 😫. I would be more than happy to pay you for your time if you could throw me list with parts you had to get and websites or numbers where you got them from so I can hopefully have this one done in a quicker fashion than I’m expecting.  I have just purchased a 2000 Camaro with a six speed manual to use for my car. But I am really hoping to get things rounded up before I begin to help reduce the struggle. As you clearly already have been through. You’re car is absolutely badass and I hope to create something just as fun here in my garage. Thanks

Charles McCary Zzxman1@aol.com 

Check out my post above for some pointers. I don't have a specific parts list but it gives you a general idea. Go on Jagsthatrun.com and use this (https://jagsthatrun.com/collections/datsun-zx/products/datsun-280zx-v8-motor-and-transmission-mounts) mounting kit and then but SBC-LS engine mount adapters for an easy solution to get the engine in the engine bay. The trans mount is tricky but you can make the JTR kit work with some custom drilling/cutting/fab. Once the engine and trans are in the rest can just be figured out one by one.


Oh, here is the oil pan I used as well. I know that others have gotten different pans to work but here is what worked for me.


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Bit of a big update with my 280zx. I got a burst of motivation the past few months and decided that the stock rear end wasn't going to hold up to much abuse from turbo LS power. I got ahold of a solid axle ford 8.8 from a ford explorer (the nicer 31 spline version with limited slip). I shortened the drivers side tube down to match the passengers side axle, used a 2nd passengers side axle, cut all the brackets off the rear end and began installing. I used a jegs ladder bar and panhard bar kit and got everything mounted up in the car. I cut the old strut mounts off of the stock subframe and welded them onto the new rear end. Took it for a drive this weekend and everything fits nicely and the rear holds up super well.


With the new rear end I also went with some Nitto Nt555r2 275/50/r15s in the rear. So much more traction than my previous, stock, setup.


Oh and I forgot to mention that I replaced the stock "frame rails" with some 1x3 tubing to give myself a more solid mount for the rear end.


Once I get some time ill post pictures and some more details.

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  • 8 months later...

How's everyone doing?! Anyone have updates?


I broke an axle in my car which has snowballed to redoing the entire vehicle. It now has:

s13 rear subframe swap,

apex engineered front subframe with control arms angled for s13 knuckles, 

Holley Teminator X,

new exhaust (ditched the forward facing manifolds),

dodge omni manual rack and pinion,

painted engine bay,

240sx aluminum radiator (better coolant hose routing),

z32 brakes,

new z32  speed (old one was crunchy),

and fuel system.


I'm probably missing something but I'm hoping to have it buttoned up over the next couple of months. I'll add pictures when time allows.

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i love hearing about all the different solutions s130 owners come up with for different obstacles. Like a dodge omni steering rack!? 

Mine is doing great, so i dont even want to ask how the apex front crossmember is or how you did the s13 rear sub and etc, etc...i am trying to leave mine alone right now. 

Cant wait to see some pics though. here is a couple from mine this year.


Anyone else want to check in!?


IMG_2426 (2).jpg

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  • 1 month later...

20180430_213448.jpg.bdb9b0178ccb480e8bc9ea6e2d884d53.jpg im a machinist and of coarse the s130 gets no love in the after market for tail lights. So i created my own. I found some cool infinity mirror like tail lights for a tractor trailer and didnt want to just mount them to a flat panel in the rear so i made tail light buckets out of 2in thick alum  which i thinned down to 1/8in walls for weight. And made my own clear lenses also. NO 3D PRINTING!!! 3d printing is great but im a machinist so im partial to what i can make. Id love to say i can produce them but i priced them out with the hours i have into them and they would have to be like $1700 which sounds ridiculous even to me but there was alot of hours in them. 


new phone 124.jpeg

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15 hours ago, MxcixsRey said:

would you sell another pair and if so how much ??😎


i would but like i mentioned they would unfortunately be like $1700. there was just alot of run time and material. I had also started with a flat plate in the rear because i already had other custom tail lights before. if i made new ones to sell, they wouldnt just bolt into the original location. you would also have to start by welding in a flat panel to start with. if all that beeing said and you are still interested ill see what i can do but i dont blame you if you say im crazy for wanting so much $


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  • 8 months later...
  • 5 months later...
On 6/15/2022 at 2:55 PM, G-Tech said:

Here is a pic of my t-56. The shifter is in the rear most position on the tranny. it fell right in place of where the stock shifter used to be. mine came with an adapter to move the shifter over closed to driver side but it really didnt need itimage.jpeg.8471ce7efdcf00d6897128407ddf3dba.jpeg

By chance do you know the distance from the front of the bellhousing to the middle of the shifter? thanks.

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