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I'm responding to the challenge from Carter to get my S!@#$ together and document the VG30 transplant. 

This car started life under my care in a relatively good state for an east coast 510. One of the previous owners had rattle canned it blue. Then another PO decided to try their hand at some amateur bodywork. Together it looked much worse than it actually was. I was able to powerwash most of blue off and even some of the bondo. I put a 200sx 5speed in it, lowered it, wheels and tires, seats, 32/36 carb, etc......and drove it for a year or two as my DD.

Then I came across a fairly complete VG33, trans, parts for sale down in TX. Made the deal and I was on my VG way. Then Dave in MD offered me his running, but totalled Z31 along with many conversion parts. So now I have the means to convert both of my cars to VG power. The first is the VG30 JTIN project. I will get my feet wet and then be able to make some better experienced decisions when the time comes to put the VG33 in the full restoration on the other car.

The VG30 JTIN car will be more of a rolling restoration (subsections of the car will be addressed one at a time while the rest is left intact and mostly close to running and driving)



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Got the VG30 mounted and in the 510. I have been working on plumbing, exhaust, wiring, etc. One of the items that I'm not sure of or undecided upon is the configuration of the air intake, filter, and MAF prior to the throttle body. I would like to use the stock MAF which has a OD of 3 1/8" on both ends. The intake which is from a 200sx has the z31 throttle body on it(same diameter as the 200sx) has a diameter of 2 3/4". Most of the aftermarket air intake pieces and parts that I find from suppliers are sized for 3", 3 1/2",, 4" etc. I have seen various pictures of VG30 install using the 200sx intake, but have no idea what is done to get around the sizing issues. 


The other challenge is that I will need to provide air supply for the PCV system and the idle air control valve. Spectre makes/supplies fittings so that you can drill a hole in the intake tube to accomplish this, but I haven't found other sources.


What filter media is preferred for this application as there seem to be many options?


Lastly I have read a few threads that claim decreased performance from the aftermarket air intakes. I know that they are louder due to no factory baffling, but not sure about the performance issues and what could be done about it given that the engine swap almost requires this form of air intake.


Thanks as always for your input.



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On my VG30 I had a Team Thump intake elbow that fits the throttle body on one side and the Z31 MAF on the other.  It includes two ports, one for the PCV valve and the other for the idle air control if you are using it.  See the photos below.  I am not using the piece anymore and it is available if you need.  Just send me a message if you want to discuss.


The filter is just a small K&N Cone filter.





Good luck with the VG30.

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Got some work in on the VG project today. I received some of the parts needed from Riley at Lynchburg Nissan. Secured the valve covers with new hardware, the same for prepped and painted upper front timing cover and new lower cover. Powder coated pulleys and front damper. 


Also made a visit to (2) local pick and pull lots and found a couple Z31s. 86 Turbo I was able to pull starter, alternator, lower intake, injection harness, heater piping, coil, and some misc. stuff. 85 NA also got the starter, alt, full intake with all the items, harness and computer, MAF, distributor/wires, in-tank fuel pump and flange to weld in 510 tank, misc stuff. Also found a 92 Jetta with the digifant fuel sump pump.


So I've got more than enough stuff to do both cars when the time comes.


I used the turbo alt mount to put the alternator on the passenger side. Installed the 200sx manifolds with the down pipes...hope to start building the exhaust....waiting on a 1 3/4" into 2" merge collector. The old fuel tank is drained and pulled, should get the modified(300zx pump)tank installed in the morning. I would use the current hard line to the front as the return except that when I bought this car it was plugged up with rust and dirt....got it unplugged/new filter and used it with the 32/36 no problem...don't want any rust issues with the fuel injection so I'll be running (2) new 5/16 hard lines to the motor. I think the best spot for the ECU and Can/Am box is the passenger toe kick....1/8" panel suspended by anti-vibe mounts...that way I could see the code lights if need be...cover it up with removable cover. 


Couple of recent pics



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The  VG30 project is getting closer to start up. I began the wiring this afternoon. I am using a Braille Lithium 15lb battery mounted under the rear seat between the crossmember and the drop for the floorboard. Also using a remote solenoid to keep the B+ starter wire powered only during start. I also decided to use the stock engine harness, but lighten it a bit and re-wrap it to improve the aesthetics and protection. I was able to remove several circuits...the external regulator and wiring, the third gear relay and wiring, and lastly the electric choke relay and wiring. If I can get a little time in tomorrow I might be able to actually test the start circuit.



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I completed the battery/starter/alternator wiring yesterday and was able to do a circuit test...all good...motor turns over....getting closer. Next will be wiring up the fuel injection to see if this puppy will start and run. Lots of little stuff to do.

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The starter/battery/alternator circuit is up and working. The fuel injection harness was a lot of work....stripping out the circuits that aren't needed. Then planning the installation and shortening the harness to fit the 510 was time consuming, but I'm fairly happy with the results. I ordered an aluminum sheet to mount the ECU, CanAm box, and fuel pressure regulator controller on...should be here this week. The goal for the weekend is to final mount the upper intake and get it running. If possible I'll start on the exhaust build. Coming along....



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  • 2 years later...

The car has been running for about (2) years now. I've had it out to Canby twice and run it in the Motherlode 400 Rally a couple of times. I will get around to updating this thread in a bit, but feel free to ask any questions. Thanks

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