Monday, 13 August 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Exterior, Suspension
Well it's been a couple of weeks since Autosalon, and during that period it was a time of rest and spending some quality time with the family. Many thanks to all the kind words that I've received...they're coming from all over the place including the US and Europe. But now it's back to situation normal...meaning only about 3hrs a week to work on the car.
So first up last week it was time for the tailshaft (driveshaft) to be installed. Now one thing to keep in mind here, is there hasn't been a tailshaft on this car for close the 3 years, meaning all brackets and bolts are long gone. If you're going to take on any restoration project, got get yourself a very large quantity of plastic snap-lock bags, a permanent marker and a bunch of plastic boxes to store the little bits in. Why? Because when it comes time to bolt things back up, it can take considerable amount of time to find the correct nuts, bolts and/or washers. This time I spent close to 50 minutes finding and then cleaning the tailshaft and centre bracket bolts. Once I had them, it was a fairly simple task.
Then I looked at the rest of the exhaust system. See for the show, I only had the rear section hanging by the rubbers so visually it looked complete. Now it was time for the front pipe, centre section and sometime this week the cat converter. The front pipe is the section between the turbo dump pipe (or Turbo extension as HKS calls it) and the catalytic converter. In my case I have an HKS Dump Pipe and HKS Front Pipe, both of which have been ceramic heat coated. So off I went to get some gaskets and flanges for the cat and dump. Now the 3-bolt gasket I got from Finnex didn't quite fit correctly, so I used the die-grinder to extend the bolt holes. (Note to self, put gasket into vice or you'll ruin the gasket!). After ruining the first gasket (plus wasting more time going and getting another), I had all the bits I thought I needed - and now ran out of time.
So now this weekend just past, it was time to focus on the front pipe. A quick test fit unfortunately revealed that it was going to be hitting the underside of the car. We can only speculate that because we now have nice new Nismo mounts, it was raised the engine up enough to cause the interference. No matter, we used an additional 3-bolt flange as a spacer (plus an additional gasket of course) to drop the front pipe down enough to clear. Yay, it fitted. Then the centre section of the exhaust was put on. Fairly simple affair, but damn that exhaust sealant can get bloody everywhere! With the addition of the mounting point that attaches to the rear subframe bolted up, the exhaust is looking good.
While on the hoist, I removed the wheels in preparation for the brakes to be bled and the cat converter and all the flanges and gaskets are in a single box ready to go on. Not having many pics of the underside, I setup the camera on the tripod and took a few snaps. Here's the results:
- Under the engine from rear
- Under the engine from front/side
- Under the engine from front
- Front Suspension assembly from front
- Front Suspension assembly from rear
- Rear Subframe assembly from rear
- Diff closeup
- Rear suspension assembley
So with these bits done, and the brakes and clutch being filled and bled at some point this week, attention will turn to getting the engine turning over. After that, it'll a matter of getting all the pieces left over sorted so it can be put over the pits. This includes things like the lights, indicators, washer bottle, oil catch can and as well as having an engineer take a look.
I'm so itching to get this on the road...my old Sigma is really showing signs of old age (which after doing 310,000kms is not surprising).
Monday, 18 June 2007 | | Categories: Audio, Engine, Interior
Hooray...the last of the dynamat (except rear parcel shelf..dammit) is in the boot (trunk). After I ran out a couple of weeks, it took a few days to order, then more to deliver etc. But Friday I focussed on completing it...meaning the drivers side boot floor, suspension tower, outside guards and rear panel around the lights.
- Dynamat on the boot driver's side
- Dynamat on the boot rear panel
Once that was done, I went and tracked down some rear boot carpet and floor mats. After a good vacuum and clean, the floor mats just didn't seem to be coming up any good. The floor carpet was a little better. I'm going to get the floor mats remade now with a nice plush carpet. There's also a possibility of getting some badges made up for the mats based on the logo I designed, but still waiting back on quotes for them.
Next was to sort out the fuel pump. Now my original plan was to use a Sard single pump surge tank, but due to time restraints, we're just going with an in-tank pump that we'll use in the surge tank later. The pump chosen is the Bosch 044, but in an in-tank installation. The modification and fitting to the standard fuel cage was reasonably straightforward thanks to some instructions from NissanSilvia.com and help from the C-Red team.
- Fuel pump access prior to the dynamat
- Original S13 fuel pump setup
- Bosch 0 580 254 044 (The 044) Fuel Pump
- The 040 vs 044 fuel pumps - swapped over fittings
- Bottom of the bracket removed
- Fuel feed pipe shortened
- Fuel feed pipe attached to 044
- Completed 044 fuel pump assembly
- Completed Pump Install now with dynamat
In addition to these main things, I installed the electric aerial and went and got new (ie. used) license plate holders as mine seemed to have caught the attention of the spray painter's gun.
- License Plate light covered in overspray
- License Plate light in great condition
I'm due to get the seats back from the trimmers sometime later this week so I'll be throwing those in on Friday. Greg was helping out on Saturday too, working on getting the fuel system complete involving the Sard fuel pressure regulator (FPR), fuel filter and fuel lines to the rail and back. Oh, and I got some new pedals too from Natetune on NissanSilvia.com, aren't the purdy.
- Nardi Foot Pedals
Until next week.
PS> Sorry for the title, was still thinking of all those 'THIS IS SPARTA!' funnies that are running around at the moment (see the movie '300').
Tuesday, 12 June 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Interior
Greg and I (me in passenger seat) checking out the seating positions
So the focus on the interior was kept up last week...this time in the form of the front seats, carpet and dashboard. To start off with, I remind some of you that I did purchase a new set of carpets sometime ago for Sillbeer. They were really nice and moulded to a point for the S13 floorpan. Unfortunately, it required a fair amount of time in marking with chalk the holes and cuts required to make it all fit correctly. Now when I purchased a used interior a little while back, a carpet also came with it. The colour was a darker grey than the original, but had a few stains and a lot of glass fragments spread throughout. I decided that after I had vacuumed and cleaned this one, I'd make a final decision on whether to use the new or old. The old one won. It came up a treat, and took all of 5 minutes to install.
As you can see from the photo, it came up very nicely and all the holes are exactly where they're meant to be. Next job was the seats - which are from an R34 Skyline GT-R. Reasons for these are comfort, height and OEM function. The only requirement (as with all GT-R to S13 seat fitment) was a modification to the rear outside seat mount. I had previously fabricated up a tab in mild steel to sit in the groove of the original seat mount, and after tracking down the 'Welding Gnome', had him TIG weld the tabs in place. A quick coat of black satin paint and an overnight dry, a search for the appropriate class of bolt and we chucked them in. Needless to say that due to my perfect marking, they bolted in without a hitch. See pics of the tabs:
- Fabricated tab sized and marked
- Tab TIG'd into place by the 'Welding Gnome'
- Fabricated tab painted and bolted in
I mentioned previously that Greg had fabricated a new bracket up for the throttle cable so it fitted correctly on the GReddy Plenum. This was painted up and fitted, it should clear the bonnet easily while looking fantastic while it does it.
- Throttle Bracket from back/top
- Throttle Bracket from back
- Throttle Bracket from front
- Throttle Bracket with cable fitted
Another fitment in addition to the dashboard was the new Nardi Deep Corn steering wheel. This is a very stylish black leather jobby with the red stitching. I've used a genuine Nardi boss kit - but as I suspected (see pics), it's rear diameter doesn't cover the hole on the S13's steering column cover so I'll have to fabricate something to fit in there.
- Nardi horn button
- Nardi Deep Corn red stitching
- Dash and Steering wheel installed
- Nardi Boss Kit for S13 Box
- Nardi Boss Kit for S13 Front
- Nardi Boss Kit for S13 Back
The leather wheel I purchased from Yahoo Auctions in Japan, but I recently purchased a suede version of the Nardi Deep Corn for motorsport applications through a supplier on nissansilvia.com named 'natetune' at a very good price along with some pedals and the boss kit.
Other things done are the seat belts are now in - brand new from Klippan. I fitted the horns up to replace the tinny 'beep beep' ones that Silvia's usually come with. These have been tested, and they're more BMW spec than Barina now. And I ordered and received a nice black plastic air diversion plate for the radiator/intercooler air flow from High Octane (on their ebay store). Yesterday I took the rear seats, door trims, glove box, centre console lid, gear stick boot and handbrake boot down to Trimcare in Welshpool to be retrimmed in a material close to centre panel of the GT-R seats. Chris will be taking care of them all there and I should have back a week Friday. Some of these pieces will also be copping a logo I've designed for the car based around 'specB' which will also be placed at strategic locations on the body. The logo was designed with strong influence from the USDM Nissan Sentra SE-R specV.
This week while half of the interior is away, I'll finish off the boot Dynamat'ing now that I have had another box delivered, finish off the fuel system (delaying the Sard surge tank at this stage) and get it ready to turn over.
Friday, 27 April 2007 | | Categories: Audio, Engine, Interior
First up, sorry about the delay in the posting. I've been on holiday for a week and just haven't had a chance to post up. But now we are now finally able to reveal the BOV setup. This took quite some time to work out mainly because of the size of the GReddy Type-R blow-off valve that I'm using and because I wanted it setup in a recirculating configuration. The pipework was worked up over a couple of days between other things, and then finally painted with the VHT Brake Caliper Silver and Clear overcoat. Jury is still out on whether they would look better in black, but for now they look pretty nice. For the intercooler setup, all the hoses were changed from the blue silicon that came in the Hybrid kit for black Samco silicon hoses. Don't think we've seen another setup like this before but it's neat and tidy.
- Air filer side with Z32 AFM and BOV
- Overhead of GReddy Type-R and pipework
- Intake Plenum intake pipework
The next few weeks I'll be focusing on getting the interior ready for stereo and trim, this means covering as much as possible with Dynamat. Some of you might be thinking about all the extra weight it will add, but then I'll just have to turn the boost up. The main reasons for the Dynamat is sound quality from the stereo, and making the interior livable. Just from putting it on the doors and roof, the difference to the way the roof sounds when you tap and the doors feel in closing is amazing. No more flimsy S13. Feeling much more like a Skyline now.
Dynamat Application Pics:
- Drivers Door
- Passenger Door
The firewall, floor, rear wheel arches and boot floor are still to be done, hopefully the amount I have left should be able to cover it.
Just a little extra bit done was the radiator cap. To match the RG Radiator, I've put on an RG Power Radiator Cap.
- RG Power Radiator Cap
- RG Radiator with Cap
A special thanks to Boney and Josh at C-Red for doing a little after hours work. Boney for helping with welding up the pipe work for the BOV setup/intercooler, and Josh for finding and removing an ECU loom for Sillbeer, thanks fellas (Dally put me up to this).
Cabin Autosalon is fast approaching now, so the aim is to have it all run in and completed by then. If it's not 100% complete, it'll be going in anyway.
Wednesday, 4 April 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Exterior
Well it had to happen, especially after the high of the last post...seeing Sillbeer in the sun...a boring bit has descended. Not that it's any less significant, I mean without a wiper motor I'd be totally fubar in the rain. But the headlights do look mean.
So for this post I'm reporting on 3 main things, the first being the finding, cleaning and fitting of a wiper motor. I'm glad there was only one, because it was a pain to clean. For those looking to undertake such a project, parts that have the oiliest coating, are usually easiest to clean and bring up like new. This is because the metal hasn't had a chance to corrode. Unfortunately the wiper motor had corrosion on the aluminium casing and the painted cover so it took about an hour or so to clean up. I did contemplate just buying a new one, but that would cost easily between $200-$300.
- Wiper Motor 1
- Wiper Motor 2
The next thing to report on is the intercooler. It's now mounted (as seen in the top pic) and the attention to detail on the top mount is amazing. The boys went to the effort of cutting the bracket around the shape of the logo (following the shape of the 'b'). I mean you'll never see if once the bumper is on, but you'll see it now:
- Hybrid Intercooler top mount
And lastly is a few odds and sods. The headlights have been cleaned up with some degreaser and doused with silicon spray (ie. tyre shine) to give some moisture back into the plastics. The power steering reservoir was also given a clean, sand and paint along with all the hoses also getting a good coating of silicon spray. The original intention was to mount the white plastic reservoir from an S15 Silvia/200SX, but it was going to be too much of a pain to fabricate and modify mounts when this was going to do just as well. Not that you can see in this set of photos, I've also found, cleaned and silicon'd a carbon canister and hoses which is now mounted in place next to the radiator. And finally, with the necessity of monitoring engine vitals a must, the water temp sensor has been mounted. I had bought a water temp sensor adaptor which usually would get mounted on a cut and shut top radiator hose, but instead some bright spark at C-Red suggested mounting on the top of the pipe leading into the thermostat where there's a small flat spot. So it was drilled and tapped a hole and mounted up the sensor - looks and fits mint.
- S13 Square Headlights cleaned
- S13 Power Steering Reservoir
- Defi Water Temp Sensor mounted
Oh, and a start was made on the rest of the intercooler piping which has been continuing on this week with the mounting of a K&N; Filter (test fit for time being) and the Z32 (300ZX) Airflow Meter. The main deal with this is that we have to mount the huge GReddy Type-R Blow-off Valve somewhere. Having just been down the workshop at lunch, I must say the solution they've come up with looks fantastic and will work a treat. I was sworn not to post pics until it's all welded, blasted and painted, so you'll just have to wait until later next week.
- Z32 Airflow meter/Intake Pipe
So that's it for this week, wish everyone a happy easter period and please drive safely.
Monday, 26 March 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Exterior, Wheels/Tyres
Progress is happening, but to coin the old phrase, the devil is in the detail is an understatement. And with two of the most anal people I know (Greg and I) working on the project, everything must be done to the best of our abilities (his are higher in this regard than mine). This last week or so has been spent getting the A/C condenser cleaned (and fins straightened), more rummaging through wrecks getting much needed pipe work and bits and pieces. The radiator, an S14 Racing Gear jobby (re-branded Koyo), is now in place along with the S14 shroud. There was a plan to fit up thermo fans, but we've changed tack now and gone back to the clutch fan and shroud. I went and got some foam and rubber stripping for Greg to use in the radiator mounting and the job is beautiful. You'll see the foam in and around all the gaps in the pics above and below.
- Air conditioning Condenser Installed
- Grex (Trust/GReddy) Oil Filter Sandwich plate for Oil Cooler and Remote Filter mount
On Saturday, I decided it was time for Sillbeer to get some Vitamin D, so with the help of Josh and Woody, we pushed it out into the sun and OMG...isn't it just jaw droppingly beautiful. It's the first time I've seen it from the rear as it's usually parked up in front of a wall. You really see how wide those guards are and the width of the tyres isn't really as big as first thought. Our current thinking is that some spacers will be required to get the rims out to the lip, but that will come after she's up and running. The view from the front is just awesome, looking more like it's about to pounce with those massive guards looking more like a danish strong man's shoulders...grrrrr (sorry lame). The colour really is shown a lot better in the sun, with a slight orange shown in the highlights that compliment the wheels. And speaking of wheels, they just shine. So enough of my rabbling, enjoy the pics:
Sillbeer in the Sun:
- Front View 1
- Front View 2
- Front View 3
- Rear View 1
- Rear View 2
- Rear View 3
- Side View 1
- Side View 2
- Front Wheel
- Rear Wheel 1
- Rear Wheel 2
- Engine Bay
- Colour close up
Anyway, this week it's onto fitting up the Hybrid Intercooler and GReddy Type-R BOV. Because of the size of the BOV, this is where our main problems will lie. It will be plumbed back, as I don't really want huge noise, it will be loud enough just coming back through the air filter. The intercooler couplings etc have now all be replaced from the standard blue silicon to some Samco Black silicon pieces. A big thanks goes to Steve at Hyperflow (the Australia distributors for Samco hoses) in Sydney for sending these over so quickly. Much appreciated.
Speak to you all later.
Wednesday, 14 March 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Driveline
Well these past couple of weeks have been pretty exciting around the Sillbeer project starting out with the engine meeting up with the gearbox for the first time...and doesn't it just look fantastic. Makes me want to mount it on a mantel piece in a clear plastic box. Also the stainless screws I got last week are now holding the injectors down.
- OS Giken Twin-plate Fitted to Engine
- Inside S13 Gearbox Bell Housing
- Engine and Gearbox (Driver's Side)
- Fuel Rail and Nismo 740cc Injectors
- Detail shot of under plenum
- B&M; Short Shifter fitted
So now is where it gets really exciting...the engine was fitted into the car on Monday. All went in or up, or down depending which way you look at it - with the front crossmember being dropped out, the car raised on a hoist, engine fitted to crossmember, then car lowered over and crossmember bolted back onto the car. This means it's the first time it's sitting on its new suspension and wheels. Enjoy the photos:
- On Wheels (Side View)
- On Wheels (Rear View)
- Engine Fitted (Driver's Side)
- Engine Fitted (Passenger's Side)
- Engine Fitted (Under from front)
- Engine Fitted (Under from Rear)
Oh, and those with a keen eye may have noticed the oil lines coming from the engine block...that's the start of the new GReddy Oil Cooler kit that C-Red got in for me...they're now an official Trust agent.
A couple of problems cropped up of course which were that we had fitted a non-Nissan Clutch Master Cylinder from another S13 in the workshop which had a bleed nipple at the top, and was longer in the body that the Nissan one. Needless to say it fouled on the GReddy Intake Plenum, so we've ordered an OEM one. This will then have a new HPI Stainless Braided clutch line kit installed. Also looking at my best options for the Brake Master Cylinder at the moment - will keep you posted on that.
Had a few pieces painted last week too - Nismo Grill, Nismo Front Bar insert grills, B-pillar covers and top side window trims. These are in storage and will go on when the time is right. We'll be fitting up the Hybrid Intercooler and RG Radiator very soon along with a test fitting of a set of thermo fans and shroud from an AU Ford Falcon. Stay tuned on that one. I've changed my mind once again and have decided to add just a little bit of rice with regards to the gauges. The original plan was to fit a gauge hood...but this was going to be a world of pain in itself, then the Defi DIN Gauge was a possibility, now I'll just use what I've got which are a set of Def-Link Meters with Hoods mounted on the stands directly to the dash. If they look bad, then I'll look at other possibilities.
Cheers for now
Friday, 9 March 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Old School, Track
I can't stop looking at this engine. It just looks mint. The red ceramic coating on the rocker cover, with the contrasting coilpack cover in wrinkle black is a combo I'm yet to see. This is the engine as it was last Saturday morning, with just some new stainless screws to be put in to replace the steel ones in the coilpack cover and the fuel injector caps. And for a bit of Dally humour, he's fitted up a small plaque (see pic below) that pays homage to the SR20's beginnings as a diesel truck motor. All the pulley's and belts have all been fitted up - I think all being custom ordered according to the new lengths required by the downsized pulleys.
- Under the Intake side
- Meets diesel emission standards
- SR20DET Belt/Pulley Setup
Now with the upcoming SilviaWA track day (or skid pan day) coming up tomorrow, I had to install my HPI harness into the Sigma as the original belts don't lock unless you really put the anchors on. So last Saturday, Greg helped (read did 99% of the work) put the harness into the Sigma. These belts are just beautiful, and are available through C-Red for $400...not bad for full FIA spec harnesses. I still have a second one to come, which will be setup for each in/out attachment in Sillbeer.
For those interested, I have fitted a set of seats from a Mitsubishi FTO into the Sigma as the original seats were completely shagged (as attested by my back giving me grief). They're actually very close in shape to GT-R seats, just a little more sectioned on the side and thigh bolsters. No work will be done on Sillbeer tomorrow morning as I need to fit new tyres up to the Sigma and do a minor service ready for a bit a thrashing in the afternoon!
PS> Also just made an update the 'The Plan' based on recent changes.
Friday, 2 March 2007 | | Categories: Engine, Interior
Progress continues on getting the engine all tied up and ready for fitting. We had some slight problems this week with the lightened GFB crank pulley not having enough clearance to the oil pump. Now remember that the pulley is meant for an S13 SR20DET oil pump, where I'm running a GTi-R SR20DET oil pump. Initially the machining was done, and it did turn once all torqued up, but it was fouling ever so slightly on the edge of the oil pump casing. This has now been rectified and it's all good. Here's a couple of pics of the adjustable cam gears while I was in there just for good measure:
And along with this was a quick update from the irreplaceable Greg:
Pulley machining has been done and is perfect. Pulley fitted. Crank bolt
and washer sand blasted and fitted.
All belts fitted.
Cam bolts torqued.
Timing chain tensioner fitted.
Crank angle sensor fitted.
Throttle body sandblasted and all cad plated parts fitted. TPS fitted. TB
installed on manifold.
Rocker cover installed.
Spark plug cover bolts sand blasted and temporarily fitted.
Solid coolant lines under intake manifold cleaned and fitted.
Replacement boost/vacuum fittings on manifold sourced and fitted.
While Greg was doing the exhaust side of the engine, he's had the turbo compressor housing inlet adaptor modified for a different angle. The results you can see in the image above along with some slight redirection of the braided oil and water lines to suit this updated setup.
As the car will be used for the occasional bit of motorsport, I thought it prudent to grab myself a couple of harnesses. Now what better suited than the HPI 3" 6 point harness in Black with Red stitching...a common theme I'll be using in the rest of the cabin. Aren't they just horn.
- HPI Harness Box Label
- HPI Harness logo patch
- HPI Harness Buckle
The harness will be temporarily fitted into the Sigma as SilviaWA has an MC Motorsport Track day coming up on 10 March...so I'll be ripping it up in that. Hopefully will get some pics of the Siggy sideways.
Friday, 23 February 2007 | | Categories: Engine
So as Greg has been working on the engine and gearbox over the last couple of weeks, it's been my task to find and clean up a starter motor, alternator, power steering pump and airconditioning compressor. The finding bit wasn't too bad, a couple of weeks ago I tracked down an S14a engine that was FUBAR, but had good bits left over, so off came the alternator and power steering pump...and as it was an S14a, the parts were relatively easy to fix up. There was an auto gearbox nearby with a starter motor in good condition, and after a quick scrub to eliminate the usual alumunium corrosion marks it was good to go also. That brought us to the aircon compressor which was a bastard to remove in the tight confines of an engine graveyard...with many bruises on my left arm to prove it. This wasn't looking so flash with many years of grime all over it. This needed a good couple of hours with the brass brush to clean up, but it still wasn't fantastic. The good thing I suppose being that it wouldn't be seen much from up top anyway. Note in the above pic, the genuine Trust Sump is now on.
After giving the majority of the mounting bolts a bit of a scrub too, I replaced the dull ones temporarily in place on the engine and then proceeded to bolt up these parts. Most went on pretty easily, but the S14a Power Steering pump uses a different slide plate, so I used it rather than the S13 one...all good.
And so here's the obligatory pics:
- Starter Motor
- Alternator (Front)
- Alternator (Side/Rear)
- Power Steering Pump (Front)
- Power Steering Pump (Side/Rear)
- Airconditioning Compressor (Front)
- Airconditioning Compressor (Side/Rear)
Now onto some of the stuff that Greg has been doing. That big hole where the engine goes is slowly being fitted out...but not because Greg's slow, but because he's got to find the bits, then clean them, and finally fit them. So far the power steering lines, most of the brake lines and aircon lines have been run along with fitting of the brake booster and clutch master cylinder. Unfortunately the Z32 Brake Master Cylinder that came in was for an Australian model, where we need the Japanese version which has the 3rd output for the front brakes, rather than just two which is fine for ABS equipped cars. The wiring looms are also now in place, and the fuse box has been moved to make more room in the engine bay for other 'stuff'.
- Clutch Master Cylinder
- Engine Bay Piping (passenger side)
- Engine Bay Piping (drivers side)
Much of the original clips that were in place will also be replaced with new ones, as even good condition used ones have now been affected by many years of heat cycling and are as such quite brittle and prone to breaking.
There was a possibility of fitting the engine and gearbox this week, but due to unforeseen parts missing that need to be found, we'll be delaying that action a couple of weeks now until all is completed on the engine.
In regards to the interior, I'm now in two minds about the dash treatment and the triple gauge hood. Although it would look mintox (haha, have used that in a while), it's going to take a long time to get right...and not cheap either. In the meantime, though I'm looking at using a Defi DIN Gauge and keep working on the dash as something special, maybe in time for one of the major shows. I want to keep going on with the larger gauges as they do provide warning indicators which are very handy in a high performance (here's hoping) car such as Sillbeer.
Until next time amigo's, adios.