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Figbuck

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Figbuck last won the day on March 24 2010

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About Figbuck

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday 06/15/1952

Profile Information

  • Location
    Portland, Oregon
  • Cars
    '73 620 that I bought new.
  • Interests
    Jazz music, Saxophones, Blues music, Guitars.
  • Occupation
    I've been a licensed contractor since '81 and specialize in finish carpentry & woodworking projects.

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  1. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    I think it might be easier to get another header. I'm striking out finding a flange for that '73 square port header, can find them for L20 and some other Datsun applications. I remembered that Mike Klots made some exhaust flanges a wile back, but on his web-site he put a link to somebody who wanted to take over making them, or make down tubes for them. I sent an E-mail. On the subject of new exhaust and headers; I know there aren't big power gains from aftermarket headers, but I'm wondering what size exhaust pipe would you use on a L20?
  2. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    I need a new exhaust system so I took it to Exhaust Specialties in Beaverton. The mechanic said the flange on the pipe was too thin to weld to. I also noticed the 4 into two collector is hitting the corner of the block. I guess a 3/4" taller block pulled it up. I cranked down on the new exhaust studs pretty hard, but not so hard somebody has to fight them when they go to work on it. He noticed that the header to the collector joint was leaking around the new gasket. Any suggestions?
  3. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Hainz, I wish I would have watched that while I had it on the stand. I watched it a few times years ago. I forgot about your videos, but mostly I have been out at the farm, glad to have electricity form a 150 extension cord. No running water, no internet. It would have been fantastic to watch your videos as I was in the process. You are probably right. I didn't need to take the timing cover back off, but a new gasket set is $13. I did fixed some things where I didn't like the way they turned out on the timing cover. But going through the process again, I realized I set the cam sprocket on #1 marks... I've been working the the L16 so long that I checked and double checked... to make sure it was on #1. Big time brain fade. I really don't think I could have moved the cam sprocket that far to line up with the chain marks. I just haven't been able to do it with out the tensioner popping out. But like you say, along as the crank is TDC, the slack is out of the chain and the cam sprocket is set right, will run. I've been getting all my parts from the NAPA in Newberg. It said made in Japan. The chain didn't have the two light colored links or even marks. I drilled the dimples in the photo myself. After I put oil and coolant back in, pulled the throttle cable to turn on the choke, reached in the window to it fired off... with one stab at the starter... idled right at 800! I put a timing light on it, then took it for the old Hasting's Ring road test to seat the new ring. Accelerate from 35 to 55, ten times. I came back, checked the valves, tightened some hose clamps that were seeping. In the words of Colin Messer: "I don't know if it really works or what... but it feels good to do it. I remembered reading the instructions 30 years ago on the Hasting Ring package, when I built the L16! It did feel really good! New clutch, yeah! I could feel the extra displacement and torque. I like the way the alternator whines with the sound of the valve train, and the intake snort of the Weber is louder too. I put the hood back on, buttoned up some other little projects and cleaned up my horrendous mess. I drove into town to get some hot food and gas. I looked for leaks or problems when I stopped. Everything seemed good to go, so I started to drive 20 mile into Portland. I got a mile from home when started to smell coolant. I look for a place to pull over with a street light, but before I could stop, a geyser of coolant and steam came blowing out from under the hood. AHHHH! Terror! The top heater hose had a rip in it! I got all new radiator and heater hoses, but I didn't change the heater hoses yet. I'm going to pull the heater and clean it soon, so that was a project for another day, I was really trying to get the swap done and running. Fortunately I threw a small box of tools, in the truck so I had a pair of Vice-Grips, a fifty cent piece and a big washer, to clamp the hose off, then shut the heater off. A guy stopped to see if I needed help, so I gave him my empty water jugs. Got to take drinking water out to the farm, haha. He came back in a minute with water and hung around to see if I could get going. He said he has an old Toyota with a camper shell that he keeps running, so he had to rescue me. Followed me home to see I made it. What a nice guy, restores your faith in humanity. I'm really happy. After losing my best friend to cancer in July, two of my high school girl friends died weeks apart in February, one in a house fire and the other from a brain aneurysm... I'm just trying to be in the moment and not stress over shit too much. Life is too short. If this engine last me thirty years... and you can still buy gas... I will bet 98 years old, owned the 620 for 77 years. I think it was pretty cool that I pulled the L16 out and dropped the L20 back in all by myself... what could have gone wrong there? Thanks for responding to this thread Y'all. I will post pics. Add up the hours and parts cost...
  4. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    It's apart now. Just drove back into town to get parts and stuff. L20 gasket kit was $13 and will be here after 2:00. Yeah, somehow the chain must have slipped a couple notches on the crank... but what's weird is that there is a place in the cycle where the timing marks lined up! But it doesn't run, I fucked up somehow. I did learn something. I made a jig/fixture out of a piece of aluminum shelf bracket, !" x 5" x 1/8" thick, to keep the flywheel from turning when I torqued it on. I used the same piece of metal, using one hole and drilled another hole the size of the bolts that fasten the starter motor. I positioned the holes so the little plate covers most of the teeth on the flywheel, but not at the bottom... so I could wedge the blade of a strong screwdriver against the plate between the engine and the bell housing. It's like having an extra hand. I popped the 27mm crank pulley nut off the first try with a 1/2" breaker bar.
  5. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Thanks for the input. I'm going to rent a van in a few minutes, so I can run for parts and stuff, go back out to the farm for a couple days. I'm really burned out from this, dozens of hours cleaning and fixing stuff. I'm going to get a big table set up so I can drain the fluids and take it apart really fast. At least I don't have to clean that much. I'm dreading having to take the crank pulley off again, but I have never been able to move the timing chain with a block. I'll order new timing gaskets and do it over. Half the time the tensioner comes out and unless the oil pan is off so you can get to the crank sprocket to pull it down off the sprocket and try to move it. I'm not where I can look at the engine, but there is no internet out there, I'm lucky to have electricity. So is the matchbox and vac adv on the front of the engine or to the rear on an L20?
  6. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Right, my cam sprocket is set just like that, you can see the index mark... but what I'm saying is the marks on the chain, are line up with the #1 on the outside of the gear. You can see the #2 mark in the photo... so that the #1 is at the 2:00 location. And it doesn't show it but the mark on the chain is on the #1 tooth. How can the crank sprocket be off if it reads 0 on the the timing marker... the chain mark is 22 links away from the cam sprocket mark on the #1 mark on the outside of the cam sprocket. Look at my photo... distributor tang is at 11:25... 0 degrees on the crank pulley mark and #1 cam lobes up.
  7. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    HELP! I got it all back together, but it won't run! It doesn't seem like it running gin time, it's back firing through the carb intermittently but won't run. I used the Intake manifold from my L16 with a new Weber that ha been running for 5Kmi. Pulled it off the L16 and put it on the L20. I used the square port L16 header with the L16 square port manifold gasket. I use my starter and fuel pump off the L16, because they are new. But I used the L20 alternator because it fit the L20 bracket, and it's a smaller unit than the later 720 alternator I drilled out to fit the L16 bracket. I used the electronic distributor that was on the L20, and it's coil. I tagged and numbered the plug wires when I pulled it apart. I noticed at the time the the L20's distributor had the Matchbox and vac advance to the front of the vehicle. I have been running basically the same matchbox distributor on my L16 for a few years... but the Matchbox and vac advance are to the REAR of the distributor. I remember when I finally ditched the points dist.. I couldn't get the electronic distributor to run, until I dropped the spindle drive and moved it. #1 in the firing order started in front on L16s, not in the back like the L20. Could I have the oil pump/distributor spindle drive out out time here...? As I put the engine back together, I bolted on the timing marker to check if it read 0 when the #1 & #4 pistons were up. The dot on the crank's timing sprocket was @ 3:00. The cam sprocket was installed on the #1 mark with the timing index mark straight up and the #1 intake and exhaust rockers were pointing up. Unless I accidentally moved the crank, I though it was an in time engine. I can turn the crank pulley mark to 0 on the timing marker... TDC... and find a place in the cycle where the #1 cam lobes are up and the #1 on the cam sprocket is 2:00. Isn't that an in time engine? When you look in the distributor "hole" the tang on the spindle drive was 11:25. Is it possible to have the tang 180 opposite... and still look like 11:25... the tang offset turns the distributor still, but orienting it backwards?? I though there was a marker on the spindle shaft and and small oil hole? I'm pretty sure I remember lining up the marker. It can only go in one way if it's at TDC at 11:25 right... or not?? I'm getting compression... new rings. I'm getting gas, new fuel filter... I can work the throttle to see, hear and smell fuel in the primary. Can't back fire through the carb with out spark and fuel. New battery that cranks like mad. I swapped out my cap and wires, also the coil... from the running L16... never had a coil go bad. But it's a different could on the L16 points distributor. I figured that the distributor came off a running engine, it could' be that far off. I loosened both the base plate and the indicator bolts so I could move it for the initial fire up. They were both all the way advanced to the right. No matter how retarded or advanced it still won't run.
  8. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Them be the ones... that used to be anyway. That plenum thing is long gone and the holes are plugged. If I use decide to use it, should I grind all the casting that house those little pipes, and clean up the inside of the header right there? I'll have to look at it again now that I see what it was like. Chuck the Aluminum Head guy described the system working by having those sheet metal pieces in the head glow to help burn emissions. If I used my stock '73 header, can I use the L20 intake/exhaust gasket? I'm not at the farm to look. I can visualize a L16 square port gasket working better?
  9. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    ...her is my fresh L16 head from two years ago. The header that was on the L20, has little duct like things at the top of the header port. Who ever took the manifold off cut these little things jagged with a hack saw. I will have to take more oics when I go back out to the farm.
  10. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Mike: Why can't I use the existing L20 oil pan? Here is oic of the rebuilt head. The W58 intake manifold, that was in a box in the bed, seems useable. All the smog stuff that was bolted to the front is long gone... it's in rough condition. I would rather use my L16 intake manifold... the intake ports look the same in my photographs...
  11. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    Is it the new normal that there are no more Datsuns in the Pick 'n Pull? I have not seen a truck around PDX in two years, and very few other Datsuns. If you want parts, you have to buy parts trucks now? I was talking to Chuck the head rebuilder about finding a local machine shop to take my L16 to when I pull it out in a couple weeks. He told me about a one man shop in the NAPA Auto Parts store in SE Portland. Chuck had some finished heads on the counter that were for him. He remarked that L16s are a rare breed anymore and worth working on. In the mean time... it's running on three cylinders. I bumped the idle way up so it doesn't stall at stop lights from low oil pressure. It's ugly too, belching smoke on take off. For a while I thought it was going to blow up, but I think it's just going to run worse and worse. It just turned over 277K miles...
  12. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    A progress report: 620slodat came back out to Newberg with a trailer and loaded the King Cab up. He is going to put the cab on a 720 frame with a diesel engine! hahaha cool! I got the engine and a pretty nice hood before passing it along. Still a bunch of good stuff to part out. Don; I have the factory jack. I put the crank and handle in the cab, be got sidetracked and never took the jack off my trailer for you. Also a box of spares that I should have put in the bed too, a fifth hub cap and two beauty rings, some other parts!! How did it go off loading? Good thing we didn't go out there on Sunday. They did harvest grapes and had a party in my work space! Just saw Laurel's FaceBook! We would have been in their way and them in our way. Most of the stuff I need next came from NAPA Auto Parts. New water pump, timing gears, chain, guides, tensioner... head gasket kit & timing cover kit... thermostat, temp sender, oil pan gasket. I just picked up the head from Aluminum Head Rebuilders. The quote was $580, but the bill was $425. Minimal machine work to make the mating surface flat. New valve guides and seals, cam towers torqued, ready to go. I have to dump more oics out of my camera...
  13. I'm late to this, but yeah bondo cracks, fiberglass eventually fails I have used a ton of two part polyurethane sealants and joint fillers in concrete construction. You can make a big expensive mess really fast!! I tried an acetylene plumber's torch and 50/50 bars of solder used for sheet metal guys. I thought I cleaned the crap out of everything in paint prep. I used PPG DP epoxy primer and PPG primer surfacer, then Color/Clear coats. It looked and worked great for years. But eventually something started bleeding out from the seams discovering the paint. Then the paint began to ripple and fail. Somehow the flux I used the joint or the flux in the solder began to corrode behind the solder. Or else there was rust way back in the joint that you can't get at. And even using PPG Metal cleaner and Conditioner, it didn't arrest all the rust. What a mess. What a waste of a paint job. My vote is to weld the seams. You definitely can't weld very far before you need to skip around, or just quit until the panel cools. You have to have the right set-up to, maybe even practice unless you are a real badd-azz welder. It's a nasty job... but one you only do once. I'm working on my truck again, and thinking about how to fix my situation. Thinking about welding a strip of metal an inch wide over the seam... then bondo the fuck outta it. I learned my lesson; Spending money on painting a Datsun that you daily drive will lead to heartbreak... 3 words; Rustoleum Midnight Blue
  14. Figbuck

    L16 to L20 swap

    I spent a couple days taking stuff apart and cleaning. I used Plasti-gage on the connecting rod bearings and they were not very worn. The crank looked great. I should Plasti-gage the mains too... but everything wears the same... and I don't want to take it any more apart. The pistons looked really nice, I ordered a standard ring set and connecting rod bearings. I'm going to hone the bores. They all look really nice, so do the pistons. Not a lot of gunk, some varnish buildup, but something you would expect from an 80K mi. engine. It's either that or 180K on the clock, but stuff doesn't look that worn out. The head is a W58 and looks like it was put on not that long ago from the way the gaskets were installed. I'm still going to send it out for new seals, guides and what ever machine work is needed. I'll still get and new timing gears, tensioner, guides and water pump.
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