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Posted (edited)

Hello everyone. I'm not entirely new to this forum. I had a account here back in the day but due to many years passing, me moving, and my project changing directions I have decided to just go ahead and create a new one. I bought my Datsun the original 2.8 and then I swapped in a L28ET. After discovering the head was shot, it was taken back out. Then between moving for a new job and my Datsun sitting in a storage unit for a few years, the L28ET never got put back together. 

 

Anyways, way back in high school I had this really beat up 94 Z28. It had a LT1 and a T56 that were both rebuilt. I loved this car and owned it for many years but it seemed like I had got whatever life was left out of it. It was very rusty, the bumper was patched together, the fender had a piece missing out of it, the hood had been replaced, the doors were shot, it leaked water into the cab, and much more. So anyhow my plan had always been to pull the LT1/T56 for a third gen camaro project. It was always in the back of my mind to put that drivetrain in the Datsun though. As time went by and I realized that I didn't want to do another project car or buy another car for that matter, I decided to put the drivetrain in the Datsun. I also realize that a Datsun is way more unique than a third gen camaro.

 

So anyhow I started the project a little over a year ago. I figured that I should create a thread on here so that others can chime in with advice or their opinions! I also have been running in to some questions so I thought it would be beneficial to have a account here. Anyhow I added some pictures. From the storage unit to the machine shed at our farm. Progress has been slow between working two jobs, being in a relationship, house projects, money, other hobbies, and projects! I am trying to get it finished though since I sold all of my other cars. My main obstacles at the moment are the LT1 belt routing, wiring, and fuel. With the belt routing I would like to figure out a way to run the alternator lower to eliminate some of the other pulley without interfering with my JTR mounts/setback plates. As for wiring, the previous owner for some reason hacked up the original body harness. This really suck because I hate wiring (I'm color blind) and don't know where to start. I've been thinking really hard about getting a universal wiring kit from Painless to replace the hacked body harness. That way all the wires would be labeled too and I can get rid of non-essential stuff. I'm going to run aftermarket electric gauges also. I also plan to get a Painless harness for the LT1. As far as fuel goes, I haven't really researched it that much yet. I know the fuel lines will have to be moved to hook up to the LT1. I'm not sure if I'll have to increase the size or not and what to do with the vent line. I'd like to run braided AN lines if I have to change lines.

Anyhow, this is my project so far since it changed directions!! I'd like to have a fast and reliable car that handles well some day! A car that I can take to cruise nights, car shows, track days, and hopefully the Sandhill's Open Road Challenge someday!! If you have any questions, advice, or would just like to follow along please do so! I appreciate any input! I will try to be decent about updating the post but it'll all depend on how much time I can find to work on it! Thanks everyone! 🙂

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Edited by Wildfire490

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On 4/19/2020 at 10:30 AM, Wildfire490 said:

...My main obstacles at the moment are the LT1 belt routing, wiring, and fuel. With the belt routing I would like to figure out a way to run the alternator lower to eliminate some of the other pulley without interfering with my JTR mounts/setback plates.

 

My 260Z is in storage with an LT1 ready to go in it so I had researched this quite a bit but its been a while.  Choices are limited but there are some options out there.  When this was a popular swap people were using the F-body bracket for the alternator with an AC delete pulley and leaving the power steering pump in place gutted and capped off.  Hawks has the AC delete and Dorman makes one as well.  https://www.hawksmotorsports.com/93-97-f-body/firebird/engine-components/pumps-pulleys/

 

March makes a very nice kit but it comes at a price because its machined aluminum brackets, they provide new accessories and all of the decorative covers for everything.  I was going to call them because all I wanted was the brackets in black without all the fancy stuff.  Give them a call and see what they can do.  https://marchperformance.com/chevy/chevy-lt/all-inclusive-kits.html

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, Jeff said:

When this was a popular swap people were using the F-body bracket for the alternator with an AC delete pulley and leaving the power steering pump in place gutted and capped off.  Hawks has the AC delete and Dorman makes one as well.  https://www.hawksmotorsports.com/93-97-f-body/firebird/engine-components/pumps-pulleys/

 

I actually have a AC delete from Dorman that I haven't installed yet. Then I was going to have a buddy make a power steering delete, essentially just a block with a pulley installed. There was a company that used to make a power steering delete for the LT1 but they apparently quit making them. I emailed them and got no response. I'll probably still run the F Body bracket with the deletes but I would love to find a way to not have to run all those extra pulleys just to run the alternator... They also make a alternator relocation kit that puts the alternator where the AC used to be. That would work perfect.... if it weren't for the JTR setback plates!! Oh well, I'll just invest in the many pulleys haha

Edited by Wildfire490

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Posted (edited)

Well today I got the new 13/16" Tilton 75 series master cylinder installed! Though smaller, they provide a full 1.1 inches of stroke. I just need to get a AN fitting for it. I cut about 3/8" off of the Tilton push rod. I had to drill and tap the nut and clevis for 15/16-24 thread. I also got the slave cylinder ready using a McLeod hose fitting adapter. Anyhow, I can cross the master cylinder off of the list of stuff to do! I think that I am going to go ahead and tackle the body harness next to get it out of the way. I will order the Painless 21 Circuit Customizable Chassis Harness soon. I'm not looking forward to this and I'm not extremely experienced in wiring but I'm ready to get it out of the way! 

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Edited by Wildfire490

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What are your thoughts regarding the wiring?

 

On my 1974 260z Gen1 sbc that I am bringing back from the dead all the OEM wiring is brittle and not very serviceable, plus who ever did the swap back in the 70s really cobbled the thing together. I am about ready to pull the OEM harness and rewire using a "Painless Wiring Kit" or something similar so that I have good wiring and not a patched together mess. Really tired of chasing problems.

 

Cheers

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, idahoskiguy said:

What are your thoughts regarding the wiring?

 

My thoughts are that I hope it is easy!! haha. Nah, I'm sure it'll take a bit of patience but it'll be doable. Another reason I'm excited about it is that all of the wiring will be labeled, which will be immensely helpful to me since I'm colorblind and sometimes have a hard time telling colors apart. Also some of the stock Dastun wire colors don't seem very logical to me.  I know that a lot of people use EZ Wiring Harnesses but I chose to go with the Painless harness because that is also what I'm going to be using for the LT1 Fuel Injection Harness. I've seen some good post's on both harnesses. This post in particular has a lot of info. I ordered my 21 circuit painless harness on Monday. I will hopefully get started on it as soon as it shows up and I'm hoping it doesn't take too long to do. Anyhow, I will keep you posted on how it goes

 

 

Edited by Wildfire490

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Posted (edited)

Well my painless wire harness came in a while ago and I finally found time to start working on it this weekend! Yesterday I finished pulling out the rest of the interior. It was pretty damn nasty from the previous owner(s) and it took some cleaning! I found more wires of their's that lead to nowhere and I also found scotch locks in two of the ignition wires.... I don't understand what they were doing but I'm glad that I decided to just start from scratch. I also removed their subwoofer from the trunk because I want the added space and don't feel the need for a subwoofer haha. Today I removed the stock body harness from the engine bay, mounted the new fuse block, and started to route the new painless harness! I got the front section routed for the most part. I need to get the rest of the body harness out the interior. It seems to go everywhere so I'm not exactly looking forward to it but it has to be done. The painless harness will be so much simpler! By the way, I wanted to say quickly that if you do plan to rewire your car, make sure you save your old firewall grommets! Anyhow, I'm impressed with the painless harness so far and I'm surprisingly kind of enjoying it! Making progress slowly but surely! I think that I'm going to install the LT1/T56 a bit earlier than I originally planned, possibly even next weekend if the stuff comes in time. I need to order a bushing kit, possibly cut out the old transmission brackets (I'm sure I'm going to have to. I don't think the T56 will fit between them and I keep forgetting to measure), order a headlight relay kit, order a wire loom kit, and order my LT1 harness from Painless. Jeesh, that's a lot of money! Hopefully the government gives us another Covid-19 check haha! Otherwise I might have to start selling more stuff! 😁 P.S. Sorry about the vertical pictures. I will try to take the pictures horizontally from now on, they seem to come out better that way

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Edited by Wildfire490

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Posted (edited)

Well here we are, coming to the end of a long holiday weekend. It was a lot of fun and I immensely enjoyed spending time with family, having bonfires, and enjoying good food all while following social distancing and people limits regarding Covid-19. Because of spending a lot of time with family I didn't get too much done on the Datsun. I did get some stuff done though! I managed to remove some more of the old body harness and also remove more of the previous owners hack job wiring. I also got the headlights wired up aside from the power coming from the battery (no battery in the car at the moment) and one ground that I haven't hooked up yet. I rewired the headlights all the way to the bulbs and I'm using relays. I also noticed that my inner fender liners are extremely brittle and tired.

 

My next project for wiring is the side markers and the turn signals. I decided to wait off on them since I have a question. I was wondering if the stock side markers act as turn signals or not. I'm pretty sure they don't but I just wanted to make sure before I wire them up. If somebody with a operable Z could let me know, that'd be great! Also I noticed that my side markers on the front don't match, so I need to do something about that. I was just looking and I see Skillard makes side marker deletes. I wonder if I should just go that route and get rid of the bulky side markers, make the car more aerodynamic, and save me some wiring too!! haha

 

Also, the bushing kit is taking longer than expected to arrive so it may be a while before the LT1/T56 go in. As soon as that bushing kit shows up though, were going to change the bushings in the engine bay and drop the LT1 in! So stay tuned for that in the hopefully near future! 😁

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Edited by Wildfire490

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Hi:

 

I have a 1995 LT1 installed in my 73.  I used the stock Camaro accessory  bracket for the alternator installation.  Of course modifications were required.  It has been a while and I did not write anything down,  I believe I used a power steering delete kit as received and Modified an A/C delete kit. Had to measure for the belt and sorted it out.....not sure of the final length of the belt.  I used the JTR mounts with basically the same block hugger headers in your picture....mine were not chrome.   I am attaching some pictures of the installation.  Hope they help.  It is actually an LT 1.......converted to carburetor.  

 

Enjoy!

Paul

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Hey Paul, thanks for the pictures! I'm sure they'll come in handy! I've got my AC delete pulley modified and mounted. As far as I know, nobody makes the power steering delete pulleys anymore so my plan was to have one of my friends who is good at machining build me one! Nothing has happened yet though. It's interesting that you converted your LT1 to carburetor. 

 

I'm still waiting on bushings to come in for the Datsun but I will be installing the LT1 as soon as that happens! I've progressed some more on the wiring but for the most part I've been too busy with other stuff to work on the Datsun. Hopefully I can get back to it this weekend

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Posted (edited)

Hello everyone! So between work and family time I have still been making progress on the Datsun! It really hasn't been anything exciting lately. Just more wiring and painting my transmission crossmember. Until this weekend! I started off the weekend by cleaning the shop and moving the car to a new spot. Then I got it up on jack stands and went to work! My goal for this weekend was to finish up the stuff I needed to do before the engine went in and then get the drive train in. So last week my total bushing kit had finally came in after waiting forever! So I installed the steering rack bushings and the steering coupler bushing. The driver side steering rack bushing was pretty stubborn but I got it in. I'm saving the rest of the bushings for a later date. Then I got The engine off the engine stand and on to the cherry picker. It was at this time that I discovered the extremely disappointing news that the flywheel I had ordered was wrong... The one I have is a 2.42" flywheel crank flange register. I need more like a 2" one. So I need to call Centerforce and see if they have what a I need. I don't know why this one is listed as fitting a LT1? Unless they have different flywheel crank flange registers on different LT1's? Either way, really disappointing since this means I couldn't put the transmission in and I have to return the flywheel plus wait for a new one. Big pain in the butt. So instead of the putting the LT1 on the ground or back on the engine stand, I decided I might as well just drop it into the engine bay. So I did! It's a pretty tight fit but so far the only thing that hit was my AC Delete Pulley. It's a 5.25" pulley. So I pulled the pulley and then later on I ended up pulling the whole accessory bracket. I'm hoping to get a smaller alternator and mount just the alternator only using a heim joint. I forgot to grab a picture without the accessory bracket. Other than that, everything fits but it's pretty tight. Once the transmission is on it should tilt backwards a bit more providing more clearance in the places I need it like the transmission tunnel and steering rack. Right now the engine is being supported with the cherry picker and a floor jack for extra security.

 

Yesterday and today I just worked on wiring for the most part. I finished up the headlight section wiring other than a few grounds and the wiring loom. I got my new to me side marker so now I have matching side markers. Also I found what I believe is body filler behind the side marker? Also more evidence that it was painted. Plus I later found the red hood hinge, I don't know how I never noticed that. I also looked at the paint code on the radiator support. It says 110 red. I'm assuming someone had it painted 918 orange which I discovered was a 240Z color.  I've got most of the interior wiring done, mainly just the gauges and the rear section left. I ordered some nice autometer gauge mounts and will be installing them next weekend along with hopefully the transmission if everything works out with getting a new flywheel. Anyhow, I think that about covers everything. It was a busy weekend and I'm hoping next weekend will be too! I've been pushing and trying to make good progress but I also realize there is still quite a bit to do!!

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Edited by Wildfire490

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11 hours ago, 280Z-LS3 said:

Did you make that t-56 cross member or purchase it?

 

It came with the conversion kit that I purchased from JTR. You can also buy it separately. I made the plates for the top, to sandwich the floor. I also painted it myself. Other than that, that's how I received it. I actually installed the T56 last weekend but I haven't got around to posting any pictures. Maybe I'll post a update and some pictures later this weekend or next weekend. By the way, quick tip for anyone swapping in a T56. Go ahead and cut out the stock Datsun transmission mounts. The Borg-Warner T56 is not one of the transmissions that will fit in between them

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Posted (edited)

Here's a picture I grabbed today. Also, I slowly worked my way around each bolt, tightening them one at a time repeatedly until the floors were sandwiched as flat as I could get them where the crossmember bolts up. The shifter seems to line up pretty good but I haven't tested it out yet to see if it's hitting or not. I might have to trim the hole a bit biggerKIMG0836.JPG.b6273fdaed83ec4a4386cac17c95e4b0.JPG

Edited by Wildfire490

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I worked on the Datsun a tiny bit today. I mainly wanted to install the shifter and see if it was going to hit or not. It doesn't! It is a perfect fit! Lines up and required no cutting! 

 

I also worked on the gauges a bit but I don't have any pictures to share of that yet. The mounts are having to be modified a tiny bit. I'm hoping that the dash and the rest of the interior can start going back into the car soon. 

 

I was super busy this weekend so I'm hoping that next weekend I can make some better progress

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Posted (edited)

Hey everyone, finally a weekend where I could make some good progress again! It was a pretty productive weekend of wiring! That's literally all I worked on when I was working on the Datsun. I got the gauges mounted and wired up for the most part, as you can see. I'm honestly not a huge fan of the mounts I bought. I had to make holes for the gauge lights in the single mounts. On the three gauge mount I had to notch a edge to get it to fit right. Also, the three gauge mount had no angle to it so the gauges aren't angled towards the driver like they should be. If I had to do it over I wouldn't buy those mounts

 

As far as the body harness goes, I'm getting really close to being done with it! I made a lot of progress today! The rear tail section is pretty much done! I also wired in the radio because that is crucial of course lol. I'm pretty much to the point of just buttoning stuff up on the body harness wiring. Then I can start on the fuel injection harness!

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Edited by Wildfire490

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