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The Bluebird from Japan

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It's pretty cool seeing this car state side. Look forward to seeing how things end up turning out with it!

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Can't hold it any longer... 


One of the highlights of this purchase was the trip to Adam's Garage http://sodo-moto.com/to finish the transaction.


Though he has a lot of neat little kei cars and trucks, my attention was focused on the race cars in his stock - especially this CA16DE powered Nissan Saurus:






They fired up the motor for us and I got to sit in it but barely fit in the seat!














Oh man it's a good thing I don't have a trailer or space in the garage.  In '94/'95 as a University of Washington mechanical engineering student I competed in the Formula SAE competition where we designed and built a 600cc formula car.  That was an amazing experience and I've wanted to build my own car ever since.  I walked many laps around this car soaking up the inspiration.


Adam also has a Saurus Jr with a 1 liter motor.








It's currently on BAT auction.  Check out the drive by videos! 




In the corner was this old 1974 Bobsy sports racer.






That looks like a pretty serious car as well.


Having fun with our various 510's and bluebirds and enjoying building the Swamp Thing with Jeff and Sam at the moment but I really am going to have to give serious consideration to building a tube frame Formula or Sports car in the future...


Fun trip!  I encourage you go visit.


Adam, thank you for your hospitality and thanks again for helping us bring over this awesome 1300DX Bluebird.

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Thanks for adding the trip to Adams place Carter! I have a video of the Saurus Jr so we can hear the engine on that thing. Pretty cool.



Adam took great care of us so I think he deserves another plug




Here is the video Carter made of me driving away with the car on the trailer



So I got the L13 to run using starting fluid and putting the supply line to the fuel pump in a gas can. Step one.


Added coolant to see what would happen if I kept it running for more than a few seconds. Turns out the radiator is leaking and the water pump bearing/seal are completely shot. The water pump pulley was flinging rusty water at me as I got it running. I had to use card board as a deflecor shield. It made a mess, but the Bluebird is alive! While I was listening for rod knocks and such, I heard something hit the floor and the exhaust got a lot louder. I guess I figured out what happened on the trailer when we loaded it up/rolled it off. lol





Some Datsun trivia I learned here, If you have an early car like this one, the Y pipe is a little different. The pipes are smaller and the flange gasket bolt holes are a little off. I measured the diameter of the pipes and found a replacement from my good buddy Carter


Having proven that the L13 was worth trying to save, I started a list of stuff it needed and sent off for some parts. How about that water pump?




Yeah that is pretty gross. I would really like to know how long it sat before we shipped it over.



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It looks pretty bad but cleaned up better than I thought. I found an ASIN pump that replaced it. Off the list!


The engine would not idle without my help holding the throttle. Time to take on the carborator (guessometer). I had not yet rebuilt a Hitachi carborator. I figured my early days as an auto tech rebuilding carbs on 80's era cars would come back to me so a went after it.




Apparently the L13 uses a different carb than the L16 found in the states. I did manage to replace the important parts and clean it up. As an indicator of how this car was driven, the secondary throttle plates were frozen shut. I was wondering If I could save it but decided to press on. I ended up having to pop it loose with a punch/hammer on the throttle plate to get it to move.




On to fuel supply. The hoses were original and pretty cool looking, but I didn't trust them enough to keep them original. After I managed to get the fuel cap off, I added some fuel to the tank to see what happened. I don't recommend sucking on a fuel hose. Bad idea for sure. The compressed air/blow gun method didn't work for me so I went after fuel lines and such.  When removing the rubber lines from the steel lines under the rear of the car I realized that I would have to go deep on the fuel system. No need to save the rubber lines as they crumbled off in my pliers.




Compressed air and carb cleaner worked on the hard lines, but no fuel came out when the rubber lines were removed under the tank. Time to remove it and see what is up.


When I removed the seat I found the original color had faded quite a bit. There was a swatch of cloth under the seat. Pretty nice of them to do that so I could try to match it later. That explains why the seat color looked so odd to me. It was supposed to be red ha ha.






Wonder what I will find in here?






Is this who I think it is? Going back a bit in time here lol



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One of the things I found to be different on this car was the interior dome light. Mounted on the drivers B pillar, not overhead like other 510's I have seen. The lens cover was missing which bummed me out because I was thinking it would be a hard to find item. Maybe one from another car would work? Thinking I would cross that bridge later I forgot about it.



Time to pull the tank and see what surprises I find inside (not the good kind)






Early type fuel tank fill hose just starting to crack a little bit. If I am careful I will try to re use it.




After removal. I am kind of on the fence about it. We will see.




Guess what was waiting for me in the corner? Yup the dome light lens! The mounting points are not in the best shape, but I think I can work with it. If not at least I have an example of what it should look like.




Remember that no fuel came out of the lines when disconnected under the tank? Here is why. I used 2 gallons of new fuel to slosh around and drain out what you see here. Heavy sediment in the tank. My poor car barfed!



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I struggled getting my l16 clean. It was in that same condition. I ended up swapping it. It just had too much rust in the block that I couldn't flush out.


That tank is nasty too!!

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Yeah not a good sight. Since I don't have fuel tanks just lying around, I went after trying to clean this one. There were chucks of crud that would not come out of the fill hole because they were so large.




After doing some research about this I bought some strong de greaser at the hardware store. Poured about a third of it in along with a smaller sized chain. Sealed it off and shook it around until my arms were tired. I then took some advice I found here on Ratsun and strapped it into the bed of my truck and drove it around for a few days. Rinse with the pressure washer at work with really hot water and repeat. After a few sessions, some real progress has been made.




Repeat, repeat etc.... I have a kit from POR 15 coming so I can finish the job in a few days.


I wanted to check the valve adjustment and get a better idea what kind of shape the engine was inside. They were pretty close and adjusted just fine. Not too much crud on the inside of the valve cover after all. A good sign I hope.





And after some time in the dishwasher at work




Clutch master in poor shape. No pedal action




Slave cylinder not to be trusted either




Out with the old, in with the new.




My son helped me bleed the clutch and we have pedal!

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Since the car arrived on flat tires, something had to be done about that. So with Carter's help I have a set of shop rollers that hold air at least. How long has it been since you feasted your eyes on bias ply tires? Pretty sweet.




The irony of this picture struck me as you will see. Tubeless, now that is a feature you should put on the side of your tire




Except that the only way it holds air is with a tube installed!




Which color floor mats to go with? They were included in the car.



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That interior lamp housing and bulb are shared with the 410 and 411 series sedans.

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Great to know about the lamp cross over. Another search criteria for new replacement parts!

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When I removed the seat I found the original color had faded quite a bit. There was a swatch of cloth under the seat. Pretty nice of them to do that so I could try to match it later. That explains why the seat color looked so odd to me. It was supposed to be red ha ha.




Wonder what I will find in here?




Contact SMS fabrics in Canby Oregon.  I bet they will have something close.




Probably not an exact match - I think they have mostly American car fabrics, but you can at least reuphoster in the spirit of the original.

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Hey they are in Canby. As it happens I am planning a trip there! Maybe I can check them out on Friday. Before the show

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So the bottom of the door panels, is that a metal trim. Asking for a friend. Nice find.

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I want them now lol


With your speakers, they won't do you much good...    ^_^

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Tokyo-2U often has JDM door panels - usually in black.  Keep an eye out.  You can lift the trim off those and transfer to yours.

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With your speakers, they won't do you much good...    ^_^

I will make fit


Tokyo-2U often has JDM door panels - usually in black.  Keep an eye out.  You can lift the trim off those and transfer to yours.

I know i am always watching. He had a wagon set before.

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I know i am always watching. He had a wagon set before.


Therein lies the rub. He has sedan sets on there all the time. Wagons are a bit harder to find...

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I decided to put the suspension from my 2 Door 510 on the Bluebird. While checking the tie rods and ball joints, I found this on the adjuster. At first I thought it was a chunk of mud or something. I did not wipe off ha ha.  Is that a tumor?




Nope, it looks like someone took a cutting torch to the adjuster but didn't finish the job. Totally not safe for sure!




No idea what happened there. Time to raid the parts stash for a tie rod adjuster. From the 69 2 Door...




Which one would you rather use?




Things are looking up in the suspension department.




Carter and I did a group buy from Futofab to save on shipping some large items. Here is my load of goodies.



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