Jump to content
HybridZ

1986 300ZX - swap/build


Recommended Posts

Well I was told to start my own thread!! So here goes.

 

The car is a 1986 Nissan 300ZX Turbo, I am the second owner of this very clean vehicle. I had originally intended to upgrade the stock VG powerplant, but after crunching some numbers have decided to go the motor swap route. My engine of choice is the 472 caddy engine. My previous truck was powered by the same engine with alot of nitrous and it was a blast. This car being lighter and more agile should up the fun scale quite a bit. The current plan is the caddy motor backed by a manual trans with the rear end still being researched. I currently have the stock motor/trans pulled and my test block sitting in the engine bay. I am awaiting my oil pan to ensure fitment. Well with all that said here are some before and current pics.

 

300zxshoot2003.jpg

300zxshoot2005.jpg

enginepull003.jpg

VG30ET003.jpg

300zxtokico006.jpg

testblock2001.jpg

testblock2005.jpg

 

That's it for now. I am hoping to get back out to the garage this week sometime. I am open to any and all criticism and have received many from the nissan purists whom believe that anything but the VG30 is the worst thing in the world in this engine bay.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

More engine bay cleaning. Removed the rest of the A/C, and heat shields. Brought home a complete 69 472 caddy engine with trans. Did some measuring and its going to be very tight in there. I don't want to modify the engine bay for this swap so if it comes down to this engine being too big than I will pursue other options.

 

caddy001.jpg

caddy002.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
What is the aftermarket support on a caddy motor?

 

Might want to go back to the vg30et, can make some awesome power and still get great MPG.

 

 

There is alot of support for the 472/500 caddy motors, and they make great power in return! Stock this 1969 motor makes 375 hp and 525 ft/lbs of torque. Now add an intake that actually flows some air plus a cam and a carb and I am going alot faster for alot cheaper than the VG30. I am not bashing the VG engine just for my personaly vehicle a V8 is the direction I want to go.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good luck, but i am going to be honest, you might be able to get the motor to fit and everything, but i don't think you will be able to fit exhaust manifolds on. I believe that motor is like 6-7 inches wider than the SBC. So, 3-3.5 inches on each side. That will make exhaust running a very difficult task. Good luck, because im really curious.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Good luck, but i am going to be honest, you might be able to get the motor to fit and everything, but i don't think you will be able to fit exhaust manifolds on. I believe that motor is like 6-7 inches wider than the SBC. So, 3-3.5 inches on each side. That will make exhaust running a very difficult task. Good luck, because im really curious.

 

 

I will be doing more test fitting tomorrow with some exhaust manifolds and the rear sump oil pan. I too keep saying its too wide but my caddy loving friend swears it will fit. I know we can make it fit, I just don't want to be hacking up my engine bay to accomplish that. So more pics on Monday!

Link to post
Share on other sites
I will be doing more test fitting tomorrow with some exhaust manifolds and the rear sump oil pan. I too keep saying its too wide but my caddy loving friend swears it will fit. I know we can make it fit, I just don't want to be hacking up my engine bay to accomplish that. So more pics on Monday!

 

Heh, the ONLY way i can see it fitting is if you turbo it, so you can run the front facing manifolds...but even then, i dont see them not hitting the rails on each side. Good luck.

Link to post
Share on other sites

you will definitely have to remove the hood, raise the car very high, and use a chain lift to enter the engine into the bay at an almost vertical angle.

 

If not, you'll have to cut the front hood latch support bar. The stock vg30 doesn't clear it without removing the balancer, and that 472 looks twice as big.

 

That is... if you intend to put it all in as one piece, assembled and such.

Link to post
Share on other sites
you will definitely have to remove the hood, raise the car very high, and use a chain lift to enter the engine into the bay at an almost vertical angle.

 

If not, you'll have to cut the front hood latch support bar. The stock vg30 doesn't clear it without removing the balancer, and that 472 looks twice as big.

 

That is... if you intend to put it all in as one piece, assembled and such.

 

 

Hood is removed. Car is on jack stands, I have s tall engine hoist. I removed the stock VG complete with all accessories and turbo with the trans hanging on it with no problems. The 472 will however be test fit with all accessories removed to help with clearance.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Good luck, but i am going to be honest, you might be able to get the motor to fit and everything, but i don't think you will be able to fit exhaust manifolds on. I believe that motor is like 6-7 inches wider than the SBC. So, 3-3.5 inches on each side. That will make exhaust running a very difficult task. Good luck, because im really curious.

 

3 1/2" per side is going to be really tight, but I think you can squeze it in. Here is a shot of the clearance on my sbc. The exhaust is pretty tight, but if you could find headers that dump at the rear they should be okay. Also, if that is a turbo 400 trany, you are probably want some taller gears in the rear end.

Engine fender clearence lt_thumb.jpg

exhaust clearence left 1_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 1/2" per side is going to be really tight, but I think you can squeze it in. Here is a shot of the clearance on my sbc. The exhaust is pretty tight, but if you could find headers that dump at the rear they should be okay. Also, if that is a turbo 400 trany, you are probably want some taller gears in the rear end.

 

Thanks for the pics and info. I spent alot of time in the garage this morning trying to get the motor and trans in. Ended up removing the trans to realize that the motor is still just a tad too long with all the accessories hanging off the front. I am not saying it won't fit yet, just need to remove more items and try again later. The width looks ok so far.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 1/2" per side is going to be really tight, but I think you can squeze it in. Here is a shot of the clearance on my sbc. The exhaust is pretty tight, but if you could find headers that dump at the rear they should be okay. Also, if that is a turbo 400 trany, you are probably want some taller gears in the rear end.

 

I think if he is going to get it to fit, the exhaust manifolds will have to be custom. If you use the rear exits, with the extra size per side, its going to exit right on the steering shaft, or hit the rail. Damnit, now i want to see. Hurry up lol.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Hood is removed. Car is on jack stands, I have s tall engine hoist. I removed the stock VG complete with all accessories and turbo with the trans hanging on it with no problems. The 472 will however be test fit with all accessories removed to help with clearance.

 

I think it will fit, but you'll most likely have to do engine first and then trans from underneath.

 

You will have to start looking for block hugger headers too, and perhaps work the collector back some and weld on a tight angle or adapter that can make use of the space.

 

I had to remove my balancer to get my crank snout to clear with my z31 hood on just to put the vg33 back in, which has the same dimensions as the vg30.

 

I think it will be an interesting project and you'll be looking at other things to keep the car from turning into a pretzel when you get it running.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

Well the time finally came to do some more test fitting and I have come to the conclusion that the caddy motor will not fit without more modifications than I am wanting to do to my chassis. The transmission is a whole different story as the tunnel will need to be cut and raised which I am also not willing to do to the car. Therefore I am going to go with a standard 350 sbc for now with a manual trans.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 1 month later...

Have 350 SBC and T5 trans with zero time to test fit! At least I have the parts!! I am hoping to retrofit the stock hydraulic slave cylinder to work with the GM T5 trans to keep things more simple. Anyone have any luck with this? I suppose this thread could be moved to the Gen 1 & 2 GM swap area also.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...