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Introducing, Rugby the 620

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I wasn't going to start a thread about this yet but i just can"t wait.


Here is Rugby.  1974 Datsun California Stepside 620.   L18 with w53 head 4 speed manual. It was removed from 23 years of storage a few months ago.  Older gentleman health issues, had to move into rest home. Anyways, the body is in great shape. no rust through but  Some minor body work has been done here and there. Engine cranks over but struggles to start. Probably needs the gas system cleaned, has some electrical issues with switches and stuff. Probably needs brakes gone through.  Inspected the floor boards briefly, looks good.

Came with alot of parts collected through his years. Nothing of the "find of the century" parts.  Got some original slot mags with old bias ply tires and alot of J Series engine parts.


I paid more than I should of but oh well.  Pics















Now to go through all the boxes of parts to see whats there. Also will take pics of inside once I get to check it out.

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Gave it a bath today. Floor boards are in good shape. Driver side has rust but nothing through. Passenger side good. 




Found some rust through on bottom of front fender.  Found gas tank rubber hose is shot. Needs gas tank cleaned out.  Blinkers don't work and headlight relay faulty. clutch slave cylinder not engaging.  Master brake cylinder needs replaced. probably needs brakes gone through too.  Going to be awhile before I get this on the road.

Going to start making a list

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Some pics of the parts that I got with the truck. Went through one box and had parts from the 80's


The 1300 blocks look they were refreshed or never used,


guessing at parts here


First off : Fly wheels.   Possible 2 - j13 and one L16




I believe j13 head.  looks new




Chrome valve cover.  Not 100 % sure on motor  Datsun 320 truck??





Cams for j13




Cranks  2 possible j13 and one L16




L16 block with piston and crank installed




J13  block with crank installed.  No piston marks or top ridge on cylinders




J13  block with crank and cam installed.  No piston marks or top ridge on cylinders





And looks to be a 520 chrome grill with headlight rings



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p_016.jpg Middle one might be J or L16/18


The top two and bottom look like L20b or larger engine. All three need to be flipped over to see the clutch surface areas.


L series cranks have 5 main bearings. The J series only have two.

L series cranks are...

5 bolt... L16/18

6 bolt... L20B and larger displacement

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  • 4 weeks later...

Wheel fitment








Period correct





235 60 14 








Farmer when I put the 1985 720 4x4 springs under my 520 it pushed my wheels back in the wheel openings like yours are in these pictures.  I had to have my brother Garret re drill the centering bolt hole.  I had to move the hole 2 1/4" forward to center my wheels in the opening.

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Did a compression check on the L18 power plant  COLD START.   Cant due a hot test.  Have to drop tanks, clean lines and replace filler. And a few other things


#1  155

#2 155

#3 157

#4  151



At the same time, I did a comp check on my l20b cold start to compare. Got 157 155 155 154



So plans are for just a reseal, fix gas, fix water and clean it up.  Put Weber on and call it good. And replace trans with 5 speed

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  • 1 month later...

Did a little work today on Rugby.  Was planning just to remove intake to replaced but noticed the hoses and water passages rotted. So a little more than planed. 


Tear down






Took valve cover off to inspect and found this sticking up





Someone forgot to pull the wooden wedge out. 





So now it looks like Im going to have to pull everything off and flush. 

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