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1983.5 4x4 - retirement truck


Madkaw

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19 hours ago, Lockleaf said:

The motor assembly can be inserted anywhere in the column or shaft.  Might be worth getting turbo and manifold bolted in and then seeing if you can fit the motor in the engine bay on the steering shaft rather than inside the cab?

I’ve actually been trying to do that . I was going to make use of that space behind the brake booster to fit the motor . It’s tight but I think I can get it done . I don’t see it fitting inside the cab . It would require boxing in part of it at the floor level . It’s a bit of fab work . I have a parts truck at the local JY that I can use to mock up - it’s pretty well gutted . These truck are so small it makes it a challenge to alter anything . 

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Went in a tuning run yesterday . The MS ECU had self tuning capability . Just drive and tune !  I was happy with the performance on the highway . Very easy to cruise 70mph . Power up the hills was good. 
I have programmed in some lean numbers at cruise and that doesn’t seem to affect power much . Still running 87 octane .

 

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This is because the perfect stochiometric is at the top of a broad bell curve somewhat like a dyno torque curve with 130 peak torque at 3000 but with 129 at 2500 and 4000 on either side. So basically the same amount over a wide range. 14.7 is the ideal but it's not much change on either side. For cruise and mid throttle you can run well into the 15s for good mileage saving full throttle low 13s for performance. At some point of throttle input and leanness the cooling by evaporation can't prevent pinging and that has to be avoided.

 

My a/f read 9.6 (I think this was as low as it would go) at full throttle. I swear I could see black smoke out the back.  I re-jetted to low 12s and you could feel more power. It takes a lot to register on the ass dyno. I worked my way up to high 12s with little to no change so there is a point where over rich absorbs combustion heat from evaporation of excess fuel and harms performance.  

 

Carburetors being what they are I get about 15- 15.5-ish at 50-60. The slightest input and it drops. Let off and it drops into the 13 clears itself and goes into the 18-20 range and even 22 at times if gearing down. This is idle air volume so not much gas or air so not producing hardly any heat that could damage a valve. 14.8 while technically 'lean' is no where near dangerously lean. Just my experience.

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You could also consider (if useful and enough space) adding to the brake booster spacer, making a little more space behind it?  just a thought. I'm not there looking at the problem, so there is too much I am not considering.  either way, big fan of your build.  I have long wanted to FI a Z24 with the Z22E manifold.  Just never pulled the trigger.

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3 hours ago, Lockleaf said:

You could also consider (if useful and enough space) adding to the brake booster spacer, making a little more space behind it?  just a thought. I'm not there looking at the problem, so there is too much I am not considering.  either way, big fan of your build.  I have long wanted to FI a Z24 with the Z22E manifold.  Just never pulled the trigger.

It’s working out well. I also have oversized pistons so my cylinder pressure is 180psi hot . So my CR is around 9ish . Only running 4 plugs so my ignition is very advanced compared to stock . The engine is not as smooth as I think it should be - I did not balance the assembly - so it might be part of that . 
I think if I can pull off the electric steering and I go electric fans , it should give me some add hp - thought I might need an even bigger alternator . 

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I really like you 720 build, the color you picked is perfect for the truck.

 

Do you have anymore info on the MS install? I'm interested in how you are firing the coil(s), and why you picked MicroSquirt over MegaSquirt 2 or 3? I've been thinking about going MS on my Z18T since I'm still running on the stock ECU and distributor. 

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2 hours ago, Z23T said:

I really like you 720 build, the color you picked is perfect for the truck.

 

Do you have anymore info on the MS install? I'm interested in how you are firing the coil(s), and why you picked MicroSquirt over MegaSquirt 2 or 3? I've been thinking about going MS on my Z18T since I'm still running on the stock ECU and distributor. 

It’s actually MS2/3.57 . I only picked it because I found a used one cheap . It’s a VW Beetle coil . It’s a logic coil and that works well with a simple MS because no additional hardware changes . It was also very small . I might eventually go with COP , but this coil seems to put out good spark . 

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I didn't explain my question correctly about firing the coils. What I meant to ask was how are you reading engine speed, are you using a crank trigger of some sort?

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12 hours ago, Z23T said:

I didn't explain my question correctly about firing the coils. What I meant to ask was how are you reading engine speed, are you using a crank trigger of some sort?

I think it's earlier in this thread. Drilled flywheel and a hall sensor 

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This week was brakes and starters. I found my MC leaking and peeling the paint off my booster so it was time to get a new one . Got lucky surfing eBay and found some OEM Nabco brake parts . Nabco MC and some Nabco rear wheel cylinders . Only reason I did the rear wheel cylinders is because I broke off the bleeder after installing the MC. Probably good in the end because those were cheap wheel cylinders I out in there before . Bleeder was rusted shut after 2 years of driving - sad . 
The starter has been acting up - solenoid has been sticking . So I ordered one from Rock auto and they sent me a Kenworth starter I think. Ordered another one from Oriellys - and it was wrong too. Maybe the third time will be the charm . 
I’m sad every time I get under the truck . One winter of snow and salt and everything seems to be rusting . I’m going to have it Ziebarted next week when it’s running again . Maybe I can catch the rust before it eats my truck . 

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16 hours ago, Madkaw said:


I’m sad every time I get under the truck . One winter of snow and salt and everything seems to be rusting . I’m going to have it Ziebarted next week when it’s running again . Maybe I can catch the rust before it eats my truck . 

 

Yeah, that kills me. I've got clients who use their FJ60/62s in the snow country and it kills me to see the beautiful undercarriage all rusty after only a few trips.

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This project has helped a lot for doing maintenance . Drilled some holes , install blind nuts and you have quick east access to the starter , alternator , oil filter , etc…

It works out best for my back vs leaning way over the fender . 

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Well my GM 1 wire alternator swap is haunting me . I think I have the dreaded parasite drain from the alternator . If the temp gets below 20 it doesn’t want to start with a brand new battery . I guess I need to do some testing . I have no issues on my Z with this set up. 

Other than that the truck runs great except I wish it was the engine wasn’t so buzzy at lower rpms . I thought it was a tune issue with the carb, but EFi has not helped . I either have a balance issue or some other issue . I do have a noisy tappet somewhere that I can’t seem to make it go away . Maybe I have a bad guide . 

Taking the truck to Zeibart tomorrow to get undercoating done . Hope it starts - lol .

 

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Unless the clutch was replaced or the engine apart there's nothing much to go out of balance.

 

Does ticking get louder under load?

 

Rocker to valve clearance may not be set properly, there are no lifters. Set all to 0.012".

 

If that doesn't rid you of it maybe the timing chain guides are worn.

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58 minutes ago, datzenmike said:

Unless the clutch was replaced or the engine apart there's nothing much to go out of balance.

 

Does ticking get louder under load?

 

Rocker to valve clearance may not be set properly, there are no lifters. Set all to 0.012".

 

If that doesn't rid you of it maybe the timing chain guides are worn.

It’s had about everything touched or replaced . 
 Any hear tick but at idle . 
 

Things smooth out over 1800 rpm or so 

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With all the rain I was getting pissed how slow my wipers were and also my foggy windows. Not ever owning one of these I don't know what was inherently bad features of these trucks.  I read where folks have cleaned up the armature and brushes and that helped . I wish I had taken a pic of the motor when I took it apart. The brushes were only half way on the armature, so they were wearing in half instead of all the way across the brush. This is the original motor off the truck and doubt it has ever been touched . Luckily I had a spare and it showed even wear across the brushes. I cleaned and lubed everything and the wipers are literally twice as fast and always park correctly now.

The fog issue I am hoping is a weak fan motor. I had replaced all the seals when I had the HVAC out. Drivers side glass in the top left corner isn't get enough defog . I ordered a new motor so we will see how that works. I have AC and don't know if that helps dry the air when selecting defrost. I did pull the fan switch so the compressor came on, but I couldn't get a cool air out of it so maybe my freon is gone already.

The truck is running pretty good but I'm beginning to think my catalytic converter might be screwed. My gas mpg is bad and it's idle is not the smoothest and I get serious amount of resonance at idle . I installed a universal converter and it probably isn't in the best location to get hot enough. Combined with how stupid rich the Weber would run at start up and idle, it was too much unburnt fuel in the exhaust. Now that I am efi I think I will start all over with another converter. I ordered the oem replacement type from Rock Auto that did not require additional air for catalynt . Why the converter ? It does help with the smell.     

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@MadKaw need some help, you posted a while back about the process of installing AC in your non-AC truck. If possible, Could you read the latest comments that I posted. My setup is the same as yours but I’ve hit a road block and need some help. Your post was titled “AC install 83”. Please, any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. 

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So the installation of a new fan motor didn’t net me much gain . I guess the original wasn’t as weak as I thought . I did notice that the bottom flapper in the box was not closing all the way which bled off air pressure . I tightened it up and it did help some . I guess I’m expecting air flow of a newer car and I’m not going to get that . The air direction from the defrosters are more centered to the windshield which leaves the outside part with less flow . Don’t see a way to change that . 
Might tackle exhaust in the coming weeks . 

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The seals between components of the HVAC system are foam.  Those rot away and turn to dust, so you end up with a bunch of leaks in your air system.  Diverter flaps have the same foam and the same leak issues as the vehicle gets older.  You might find a significant improvement if you were to take it all out and put in new foam.  

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3 hours ago, Lockleaf said:

The seals between components of the HVAC system are foam.  Those rot away and turn to dust, so you end up with a bunch of leaks in your air system.  Diverter flaps have the same foam and the same leak issues as the vehicle gets older.  You might find a significant improvement if you were to take it all out and put in new foam.  

Yes - replaced all that stuff . I might have sold the new fan motor a bit short . I was judging flow with the truck not running . Once I had 14vs going the battery while it was running it did better . I also have more adjusting to do on the doors . They don’t correspond well with the levers . 
I noticed the worst gap was with the evaporator box . Not enough support for that . 

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On 2/7/2022 at 6:21 AM, Madkaw said:

So the installation of a new fan motor didn’t net me much gain . I guess the original wasn’t as weak as I thought . I did notice that the bottom flapper in the box was not closing all the way which bled off air pressure . I tightened it up and it did help some . I guess I’m expecting air flow of a newer car and I’m not going to get that . The air direction from the defrosters are more centered to the windshield which leaves the outside part with less flow . Don’t see a way to change that . 
Might tackle exhaust in the coming weeks . 

Your build is AWESOME! My goal is also a Nissan retirement truck, I have not started replacing/rebuilding the heater on mine. But, when I had an FJ40, revamped the heater system with parts from a late 70's truck (found a build on Pirate-bay with a similar idea) It would heat you out of the rig and powered additional vents for the side windows. Looking over the heater in the 720, the hookups seem close enough. The FJ required some special adapters, I carved out of 1/4 aluminum plate (what I had lying around) with a hole saw and a couple of grinders (poor man's C&C). The only potential sticking point is where it would fit in the 720. The idea might be worth consideration, because it solves your problem with parts that are more abundant aka cheaper. Then again, I built/rebuilt that heater over 20 years ago and times keep changing.

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4 hours ago, frankendat said:

Your build is AWESOME! My goal is also a Nissan retirement truck, I have not started replacing/rebuilding the heater on mine. But, when I had an FJ40, revamped the heater system with parts from a late 70's truck (found a build on Pirate-bay with a similar idea) It would heat you out of the rig and powered additional vents for the side windows. Looking over the heater in the 720, the hookups seem close enough. The FJ required some special adapters, I carved out of 1/4 aluminum plate (what I had lying around) with a hole saw and a couple of grinders (poor man's C&C). The only potential sticking point is where it would fit in the 720. The idea might be worth consideration, because it solves your problem with parts that are more abundant aka cheaper. Then again, I built/rebuilt that heater over 20 years ago and times keep changing.

Thanks. The fan pressure seemed much better with the truck running! I guess the real test will be this summer and AC. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

When I started my plans with this truck I heard mostly negative comments on the 390 gear set for the 4wd  and how this trucks are so slow - but  I really like it . Even with 30” tires the truck can really scat around well and keep up with traffic in the city very well. I buzz around town and I’m not always looking for the next gear . My engine smooths out considerably over 2k , but I think my engine could be smoother below that ,  but I also get some drone/resonance below 2k . I use my truck as a DD and I only have about 250lbs in the bed. 

I had  planned on keeping this gear set because I am going to turbocharge the engine anyway , but the truck does well NA . I bet a cam would really cool and might do that first and or additional to the turbo. 

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  • 1 month later...

So I have a college kid that helps me wrench . He’s been driving my truck doing errands and what not since I had the carburetor . He drove it for the first time with the ported EFI . He was like “damn - that things runs awesome - so much better than the carb . It’s actually pretty quick” 

Glad he said that so I know I am improving based on someone else’s perspective too. 
 

Curious how the cam will affect it . This week I do the trans swap to 71C . Might try and get the cam in also 

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