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About DanielC

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 09/01/1954

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  • Location
    West Linn,Or
  • Cars
    521's Ford Aerostar
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  1. DanielC

    My 1971 521

    I replaced the exhaust system on two of my 521 trucks. See this thread: https://ratsun.net/topic/61167-how-i-replaced-a-521-exhaust-system/ i would strongly suggest you put a bolt in flange about 18 inches down the exhaust pipe from the lower manifold flange. Then you only have to remove that part of the exhaust system to pull an engine, or drop the transmission for a clutch change. Recently, I put a L-20-B engine in one of my 521 trucks, and used the round bottom port L-20-B exhaust manifold, and I just had to make the short downpipe to put the engine in Ratsun, (my name for that truck).
  2. DanielC

    My 1971 521

    I have replaced the head gaskets on a Ford Aerostar with a 4.0 Liter engine. Trust me, Datsun 521 trucks are easy.
  3. DanielC

    My 1971 521

    Some Nissan part numbers. The nuts in the top of the picture are a special stainless steel. I have used these nuts on my Datsuns since the 1970's, and I also used these nuts on the exhaust pipes on a VW dune buggy I had years ago. I have never had these nuts seize on the exhaust studs in either Datsun or VW air cooled engines. I also reuse these nuts with no problems.
  4. DanielC

    My 1971 521

    Exhaust manifold studs are M8-1.25. The body bolts on a 521 are "SAE" standard. 3/8-24, 5/16 -24 , 1/4-28 #10-32.
  5. DanielC

    A 521 in Massachusetts

    Since you are going to be playing with carb jetting, you need to get a vacuum meter. In almost all cases, if the engine has a higher vacuum under the basically same conditions the engine is running more efficiently.
  6. DanielC

    My Dragon Datsun 521

    I have been doing body work, and painting the left door, and fenders I am going put on Dragon soon. This is the left door inside. Most of the window frame of the door has been painted, but the exterior door skin still has some dents and minor low spots. I have been working on the fenders I am going to put on Dragon. Both right and left fenders have had a lot of metal work done to them, then I cleaned then both down to bare metal, inside and out, sprayed PPG DP40LF epoxy primer on them, then a surfacer, and a guide coat, then sanded the guide coat off. This reviled some high and low spots I missed. I metal worked the fenders some more, and again a coat of epoxy primer. This is the right fender, again sprayed with a coat of surfacer. And then the fenders were sprayed with a light guide coat again. Now, back to door work. I need to have the doors on the cab, to fit the fenders. This is the door that I have already painted the inside and window frame of, and I needed to repair some shallow dents and dings in the outside door skin. When I was much younger, I thought it was OK to apply plastic body filler to bare metal. I also heard this was a bad idea, you should an epoxy primer on bare metal, and let it cure, then apply plastic body filler. Since I have had Dragon since the 1970's, and have done previous work on it, I am finding that a lot of areas that I put plastic body filler on have the filler coming off, and rust under the filler, on the what was bare metal. I am my own dreaded previous owner. This is a closer look at one of the areas with filler applied, and sanded down. i have sanded down to bare metal in a few spots, so guess what. Another coat of PPG DP40LF epoxy primer. The epoxy primer has a 24 hour wait time to apply plastic body filler to it. I wanted to do other work in the garage, and needed to put this door somewhere else. I also had some other doors that need work in the garage, taking up space, and in the way. I came up with this idea.
  7. DanielC

    A 521 in Massachusetts

    If it is a plastic split loom, almost any auto parts store should have them. Try to find an independent auto parts store, ideally one with a machine shop.
  8. DanielC

    Mounting and Aligning Doors ???

    Adjusting doors is as much art as science. I can give a detailed explanation this evening, when I am not at work. These pictures and explanation are on a 521 truck. Same basic idea on a car. Substitute the word "Car" for "Cab" I wanted to move the whole door forward. This is the top rear corner before adjustment. This is after the adjustment. Ideally you want to remove the door catch off the rear door post, or the door latch mechanism out of the door. The door catch should not be used to adjust the height of the rear of the door, the door should be held by the door hinges. Removing the catch off the door post is easier, you do not have to partially disassemble the door, but if you remove the door latch (lock) mechanism, you can clean and regrease it. It will work a lot better with fresh grease in and on the latch mechanism. If you have a four door car, adjust the rear doors first. Then adjust the front doors. After the front doors are adjusted, you adjust the fit of the fenders to the door. If you are also removing the hood, you adjust hood fit to the cowl, and then adjust the fit of the fenders to the hood and doors. When I am putting doors on a cab (car) after painting the door, it is way easier to avoid chipping the paint on the door edge if the fenders are not on the vehicle. I put the hinges on the door, and move them around to approximately center the hinges in their range of adjustment. It is also easier to put a door on the vehicle if the door does not have the windows, or lock mechanism in it. The door is lighter. If the window is not in the door, you could reach through the window to put the bolts in the hinges through the door posts. I just wanted to move the door forward. This was simple, I loosened three of the four door post bolts, on the top hinge, and two of the three bolts on the bottom hinge. I then slightly loosened the two remaining bolts, but leaving them tight enough to hold the door. I loosened the top bolt a little more, and lifted the back of the door, and tightened it. This moves the top of the door forward, and up, leaving the door slightly crooked in the opening. Then I loosened the tighter bolt in the bottom hinge, and the door moves forward, and down slightly, making it straight in the opening again. You adjust the door gap to the car to the door frame visually. To check door fit or tightness to the weatherstrip, you use a dollar bill, and put the dollar bill where you want to check the tightness to the weatherstrip. Hold the door closed and feel how much drag is on the dollar bill as you pull it out. Use the door hinges to adjust the bottom of the door fit to the weatherstrip, checking with the dollar bill. When the fit to the car body is good, and you have a fair amount of drag on the dollar bill, reinstall the door latch and catch. Use the latch and catch to hold the door fit to the weather strip, again checking with the dollar bill. Do not worry about the top of the window frame, get the fit on the lower part of the door good. If needed, you can bend the top of the sliding window frame in or out to adjust fit to the weather strip at the top of the door. Door hinge pictures. The hinges are bolted to the cab door post, and to the door. You can adjust the whole door forward, aft, up, and down, by either loosening the door post to hinge bolts, or the door to hinge bolts, moving the door, and retightening the bolts. You can also adjust the door in and out to the cab by loosening the door to hinge bolts. When you put the fenders back on, you want the front edge of the door slightly inside the fender. 1 Charlie69 reacted to this
  9. DanielC

    My Ratsun Datsun 521, now with L-20-B

    A few day ago, I took advantage of a early season sale on wood pellets I use to heat my home with. I just started to unload the pellets. Just another picture of the pellets in Ratsun. Fifty 40 pound sacks, a ton of wood pellets. With the L-20-B engine, it does not take as long to get up to speed on the freeway. The brake hydraulic problem seems of be fixed. I also got another full tank of gas yesterday, and calculated the fuel mileage on the last tank full of gas. 24.72 MPG.
  10. DanielC

    521 brake hydraulic problem

    I have driven Ratsun 17 days, but not everyday, and 242 miles with out any more brake hydraulic problems. I am pretty sure the problem was a bad brake light switch.
  11. DanielC

    Aluminium Door Sills repair

    Go ahead and work on them. Just remember the aluminium is really soft and moves easily. The aluminium also has a lot less spring back than steel. Try not to over work them, aluminium work hardens, and then cracks. Hammer gently, and use a block of wood, or plastic to protect the aluminium.
  12. DanielC

    Aluminium Door Sills repair

    This is just a post to make this door sill repair pop up again now that I have added explanation.
  13. DanielC

    Aluminium Door Sills repair

    I had five pair of these aluminium door sills for my 521 trucks, and all of then had some bends and kinks in them. In this picture, I had already straightened some of them, figuring out how to straighten them. On each of the flat areas on the ends of the sills, there are countersink dimples. You do not want to flatten the dimples. I drilled holes in this board to match the dimples. I also cut this notch to reform this corner detail. I used this piece of plastic between the door sill, and the board as a pad to gently hit with a wide face body hammer. Notice the hole in the plastic to avoid flattening the dimple. This is another piece of plastic that I sanded the edge round to work the "U" channel in the door sill. After flattening the flat areas on the door sill, I put the door sill on the rounded plastic edge to straighten the "U" channel of the door sill. You can push down on the door sill, holding the "U" channel on the rounded plastic, to remove a bend that goes up on the door sill. This door sill had this kink in it. I used these duckbill pliers to straighten the kink. I clamped the duckbill pliers on the kinked area, at the bottom of the "U", and then clamped the kink again closer to the top on the groove a few times to work the kink out. This is after the kink was removed with the duckbill pliers. Here I am trying to fit a bent door sill into a groove in a 2x6 tongue and groove board. In this picture, I am just sighting down the door sill to see where the gentle bends in the sill are. The bends I just removed by holding the door sill in both hands, one hand on each side of the bend, and just gently bending the sill in the opposite direction . You cannot concentrate too much force in one area, spread the bending you are doing over the whole bend. If the bending puts a kink in the "U" channel again, remove the kink, and then try to bend the channel some more. When the door sill is close to straight, it can be worked some more by putting the "U" channel in the groove of a 2x6 tongue and groove board. You can also position the "U" channel on the end of the 2x6 to remove a bend that goes down, on the door sill, by holding the door sill in the groove, similar to removing the bend on the rounded edge of plastic above. I also used this narrow cross peen hammer to gently work the bottom of the "U" channel. If you do not have a cross peen hammer, sanding a round on the edge of a narrow piece of wood would also work. This is a wider cross peen hammer, this hammer works the edges of the "U" channel a little better. Again, a piece of wood can be cut and sanded to work for this. This picture is after working the "U" channel. The door sills above the rubber sanding block have been straightened, the one just above the block is the one I was working the "U" channel in the above pioctures. This is that same door sill piece on edge, leaning against the rubber sanding block. I used the same techniques to straighten the rest of the door sills. This is one of the door sills back on the door weather strip on one of my 521 trucks.
  14. DanielC

    My Dragon Datsun 521

    A little bit of work on Dragon. I went ahead, and put the 20 tooth speedometer pinion in the transmission, this one. To do that, I carefully backed Dragon's rear wheels up on these ramps. A picture of the rear of the truck in the air. The ramps got the rear of Dragon about this high, for reference, the bottom of the tail lights are normally about 18 inches off the ground. This is the speedometer pinion in the five speed transmission in Dragon. It was a bit difficult to remove, being right above the cross member. I removed the bolt and tab just above the speedometer pinion, and was able to pry it out with a small pry bar, and then by putting a pair of vice grips on it. It is sealed with an "O" ring, and as long as the "O" ring in in the bore, it is hard to move. Sorry, no pictures of the actual removal process. I will try to talk you through it. Work the pinion holder out of the bore, and when the "O" ring is free, gently push it in just enough to stop the gear lube from leaking out. Get a container to catch the gear lube that will run out. Then I held the new speedometer pinion and holder in my hand, with my little finger, used my thumb to grab the old pinion holder, pulled it out, dropped the old pinion in the container for the gear lube, and quickly put the new pinion back into the hole in the transmission. Only a few fluid ounces of gear lube came out, I think because the rear of the truck was high, and I did not waste a lot of time with out the pinion hole in the transmission having something in it. I mixed up some paint, and painted the inside and window frame on the left door I am going to put on Dragon. A little while ago, When paining some small parts for Dragon, I ran out of paint, and only painted the back side. I did not want to mix a tiny bit of paint to do the front of the gas cap door, so the front of the door was still on primer. I had just enough paint from the door to paint the front side of the gas cap door. Another picture of the gas cap door.
  15. DanielC

    My Ratsun Datsun 521, now with L-20-B

    Thanks again on the explanation on the carb heat and EGR controls on the engine and air cleaner, Mike! This is what the air cleaner lid looked like when I brought it home, last week. I hope to use it on Ratsun pretty soon. In Oregon, a Datsun runs pretty good in the summer, but in the winter, they really like heated air going into the carb. I have actually had a 521/L16 Hitachi ice up before, because most 521 trucks had a manual air heat control valve on the air cleaner. I still have some paint I had mixed up that is very close to the stock air cleaner color. 1968 or 1969 VW Chrome Blue is very close, and I had a auto paint store either tint, or shade the paint to match an air cleaner lid I had. I stripped the old paint off the 1974 620 air air cleaner I got last week. I started with the 3M Clean and Strip disk on an air sander. The 3M Clean and Strip disk cuts right through the old decal. More paint removal. I also cleaned the air cleaner body. I also used a small orbital sander to clean more old paint off the air cleaner body and lid. These are Nylox brushes. They are at Ace Hardware, in the USA. They are made of Nylon, I think, with an abrasive embedded in the nylon bristles. The bristles will go down into shallow pits pretty good, and will remove rust too. You have to keep than moving, if you stay in one place, at too high of a speed, the metal will heat up, and melt the nylon. Keeping the speed slow also helps reduce metal heating The Nylox brush goes in a drill. The majority of the paint removal was done with this. The brush is flexible enough to get into the depressions in the air cleaner lid, and into tight places on the air cleaner body. Sorry, I messed pictures of the almost all of the paint removed from the air cleaner parts. After cleaning the old paint and some rust off the air cleaner parts, I primed them. I had some other air cleaners, and I primed those two other lids as well. I primed the air cleaner body. The next day, I painted the air cleaner parts. The air cleaner body painted. This is how I painted both the top and bottom of the air cleaner. You first prime or paint the bottom of the part, and then you can paint the top, after turning it part over. After letting the paint cure for two days, I reassembled the air cleaner. This is a picture I took of the hoses on the bottom of the air cleaner, before I took it apart. This picture came in very handy when I put the air cleaner back together.

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