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Discussion Starter #21
I did toss in the 180, when it was in the low 50s it would barely creep past 160(with the 160 stat). It's more or less 1:1 with increase in ambient to increase in water temps.

This winter the headers will get coated and/or wrapped along with probably a 4l80 for overdrive which will both help.
 

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Awesome build. I have a 74 260Z 2+2 myself. I blew up two IRS rear ends, so I had a 4-link and a 9 inch put in. 29 inch dia. tire is about the tallest I could fit, using a 29 X 12 slick now.

The Factory Datsun radiator is just too small for a SBC. I tried the header wrap stuff (yuck, killed set of Hookers) and got a new set of the Hookers (this was in 1995) and with coating, still ran a bit hot on the street. Going to upgrade soon to something better, since I no longer drive it on the street.

Mine sat on jack stands for 10 years, now I am planning its return to action. Its a bit tired.

By the way, I am looking for a way to convert the front lug studs to 5 lug, if you find a good way, let me know.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
Awesome build. I have a 74 260Z 2+2 myself. I blew up two IRS rear ends, so I had a 4-link and a 9 inch put in. 29 inch dia. tire is about the tallest I could fit, using a 29 X 12 slick now.

The Factory Datsun radiator is just too small for a SBC. I tried the header wrap stuff (yuck, killed set of Hookers) and got a new set of the Hookers (this was in 1995) and with coating, still ran a bit hot on the street. Going to upgrade soon to something better, since I no longer drive it on the street.

Mine sat on jack stands for 10 years, now I am planning its return to action. Its a bit tired.

By the way, I am looking for a way to convert the front lug studs to 5 lug, if you find a good way, let me know.
I never trusted the stock R180, even when the SBC had no balls. Especially because when I bought the car it came with a spare.


Define "good" for 5-lug, as there are billet hubs to change it to 5x114.3, but, they're $375 and also change the front rotor to the 5 bolt Z31 pattern. http://www.silverminemotors.com/featured/5-lug-front-hubs-for-240z-260z-280z-cnc-aluminum.

I'm not that worried about wrap killing the tubes, I'll probably have them ceramic coated first and the wrapped. At most, they only need to make it two summers that way. If everything goes as planned, it only needs to make it through next summer with the SBC.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
I went racing this weekend. There is a casual hill climb put on by the MN Austin Healey club that I also did last year with the car. While most of the field was old British sports cars there was a hand full of pro touring American cars and a 5.3 swapped 240z. There were two caterham/lotus 7's and a couple of race cars as well.

I'm really happy with how the changes I've made improved that car and I had a decent showing for my time, especially since it was the first time driving it hard for more than a quick rip in a straight line. I managed to beat one of the pro-touring cars which I was pretty happy with since he has a lot more seat time with his car than I do with mine. It took until the last run of the day to really grow a pair and make my quickest run, including the 2 second penalty.

The only issue I had was that the sender for the oil pressure gauge took a shit as soon as I started my 2.5 hour drive to the event on Friday. Currently it only reads disconnected and 50psi. Since it didnt seize up in the 300 miles I put on over the weekend including the racing that the oil pump and motor itself is still actually fine.

I've not actually checked if it is the sender or the gauge. Either way I'm fairly annoyed since both have only been in the car since June of this year. In the scheme of things it's a pretty minor issue to have.
 

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Great car. These Z cars are in my top 5 of always want one. Lol. Love what your doing to the car.
 

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The only issue I had was that the sender for the oil pressure gauge took a shit as soon as I started my 2.5 hour drive to the event on Friday. Currently it only reads disconnected and 50psi. Since it didnt seize up in the 300 miles I put on over the weekend including the racing that the oil pump and motor itself is still actually fine.

I've not actually checked if it is the sender or the gauge. Either way I'm fairly annoyed since both have only been in the car since June of this year. In the scheme of things it's a pretty minor issue to have.
Was smack in the middle of the points chase 1 season battleing to retain #1 from beginning to end of season, Race #8 making a competition pass and watched oil psi goto 0. Held it to the wood, go or blow with nothing to lose but the points and my #1 spot.

Thankfully, just a faulty sending unit (electrical Autometer) so finished the weekend not looking at the oil guage stuck on 0 then replaced it that week and all was right with the world, shit gets your attention quick huh? LOL.

Cool car!!
 

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Great job man! You and I have some notes to compare. I have a 76 280/ 408sbc/700r/r200 w/3.54's. Same gauges, hood prop, etc. Mostly bracket raced, but it does have plates. I am at the crossroads on what to do about the r200 , halfshaft, stub axle upgrade right now.
I am on HybridZ as well, but have not seen anyone selling the 8.8 conversion kit. If you could post up a link, I would appreciate it.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I don't know anyone that actually sells/produces one now.

What I have was the spawn from this thread. But, Will seems to be no longer interested in Zs and I'm fairly sure I got the very last kit produced.
http://forums.hybridz.org/topic/117668-the-ultimate-irs-swap-for-s30s/

zcardepot seems to offer something similar, but, their thread on HybridZ didn't go will with being unable to answer some questions. The guy whose car the kit was developed on has since been sold.

http://forums.hybridz.org/topic/125879-ford-88-irs-differential-swap-mounting-kit-s30/

Next year I might try bracket and road racing the car. There's a few things to tidy up this winter that I never finished once the car was road worthy to make it legalish to pass tech inspection.
 

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Discussion Starter #30 (Edited)
I think I have a solid plan of what to accomplish with the car this winter. At best, I expect to have another three weeks of driving the car before they start to salt the roads around here.

Semi in order. I don't actually need to do any of this stuff over the winter, aside from make it able to pass NHRA tech so I can see what it runs.

Transmission
I'm going to go with a 4L80E, probably buying one built with how the car will eventually be and with a brake.
Rear Diff
It makes noise, probably needs a new ring/pinion and likely change out the TracLok for something else. It was from a junkyard. It works, it's just noise and feels like it has more lash than it should.
Carb
Convert the secondary to jets, then have it tuned by someone that knows what they're doing in the spring.
Electrical
Add a remote cutoff and battery box for NHRA tech. Also add a breaker near the battery.
Fuel system
Get rid of the rubber fuel line(which only runs from the mechanical pump to carb) and enclose the bottom of the fuel cell to make it NHRA legal.
Engine
SFI approved damper. The one on there now is probably the original one and has no timing marks.

The breathers leak onto the headers, I'll probably just buy one of the pan-evac kits to see if it works(I need the breathers anyway). I'll plumb the line to the collectors to my catch can.
Exhaust
Coat/wrap headers. Make the exhaust mount I meant to in the spring. Possibly add flex sections.
Brakes
Install the proportioning valve I already have. If you stand on the brakes hard enough, you can lock the rears first which is bad. Flush system with high-temp fluid.

The rear lock up is at least partially due to the current suspension setup, either way with the prop valve there will be adjustment for this.
Body
Buy/install replica 240z bumpers in fiberglass.

Make ducting for the radiator/trans cooler to improve cooling.

Replace the hatch seals, which I bought recently.

Weld my front diff mount to the car, instead of being bolted in as designed.
Suspension
I'm going to install camber plates so that can be adjusted directly instead of cheating it by changing track width.

I'll buy tie rods with an adjustable pickup point to correct for bump steer as well.

After all that I'll take it for a real alignment.

With the exception of the transmission change, everything else is fairly cheap/easy to do or have done.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
The same week as my last post here, one of the head gaskets let go.

There was a lot of ripping on it in October since I figured that was going to be the last I would get to drive it before winter.

I'm sure the gasket losing it's seal is due to running just a steel shim gasket sprayed with copper coat on a block with a questionable at best deck surface. I was running out of time before spring so I cut that corner, which came back to get me anyway. At least I got the whole summer and nearly 5000 street miles out of it between the end of June and end of October.

It needing to come back apart isn't really a big deal, it's just time. I'll probably get it taken to zero then run the correct thickness gasket.

I might not do the trans swap this winter afterall, I'd rather have everything else 100% than spend time/money fixing something that isnt really broken.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Been awhile since updates.

Changes this winter:

Engine:
New bearings.
Block decked
Carb(4160) converted to jets for the secondary
MSD module for the HEI for a limiter, so I dont accidentally wring it to ~7k again.
SFI damper.-I dropped the ancient one that was on it and it separated, so who knows where timing actually was.
I made some ducting for the radiator that should help with cooling, as well as reduce lift and drag.

Trans:
Derale trans cooler that is mounted at the rear.

Electrical:
Taylor battery box.
Remote battery shutoff

Random:
I had a lot of diff noise and slack. I opened it up and lash was loose, I re-shimmed. I also added pinion preload, as that was also below what it should have been.

How it sits right now:


Radiator Ducting:




I'll probably make a structure behind the airdam so it doesn't deform and make a small splitter. That should also improve cooling, drag, and reduce lift.

I want to have it on the road for this weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #36 (Edited)
No build updates, but, I did get to go racing the past weekend.

The event was a combined total time between Drag Racing, Auto-X, and a standing start time trial on the road course.

I had a ton of fun, and was happy with how the car handled it. I regret not having my friends that know how take me for a ride in it for the Auto-X and Road Course to see what it should be capable of.

Anyway, here's the timeslip from drag racing. It was the best of 3 runs(and my only 3 runs ever in this or any other RWD car) on street tires. Tires are a 275 Continental Extreme Contact DW, so not all seasons but not max performance summer tires either.



With real tires and someone who knows what they're doing setting up the carb it would probably be a fair bit quicker.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
Started ordering stuff to get all my projects for this year done during my spring break when it is hopefully warm enough to work in the garage.

The event I went to in the far really drove home the need to address the front lift these cars have. Going around corners on the road course above 100mph wasn't exactly confidence inspiring.

I've been around that track a lot in both the Raptor and Evo 9 I used to own, and the Datsun felt sketchier than even the Raptor.

Plans for this project season:

  • Diff rebuild
    • It was really making noise by the end of summer, it will get new bearings and ring/pinion.
  • Fiberglass Front/Rear bumpers
    • Ordered these last week. Front bumper mounts will also support a splitter.
  • Fiberglass hood with cowl.
    • Less weight and I'll actually be able to close it all the way. I'll add vents just behind the radiator to help remove heat and reduce lift.
  • Front splitter.
    • In the name of both reduced front lift and help engine cooling. I have a pattern already made, just need to fab the thing.
    • The engine undertray and leading edge will be separate pieces so it is easier to replace when it eventually gets banged on things.
  • Sheetmetal to enclose bottom of fuel cell for NHRA rules.
    • I have a pattern, just need a sheetmetal guy to bend it up for me.
  • Driveshaft loop.
    • Probably will be mounted with plates that sandwich the trans tunnel like my trans crossmember.
  • Drag radials.
    • I already bought these, and extended ARP wheel studs for the rear. 26" tall 275s on a 15" wheel. A 28" tire would have been cutting it really close.
  • Wideband O2
    • I have the mounting for the gauge figured out, just need to buy one.
  • DIY Datalogging
    • I really only need to record RPM and Wideband for now. It seems I can do this pretty cheap with either RasPi or Arduino
 

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Discussion Starter #39 (Edited)
Quite a few items have been finished or near finished(like having to wait for warmer weather to bond the cowl to hood).

Here's a video of my DIY data logger. It will be mounted in the glove box on rails.

For now it outputs to a .csv file I can make graphs with in excel, but, I'm going to setup Nginx, HighCharts, and MySQL to have everything available as a web interface directly from the Raspberry Pi.

There's an example of it here:
http://www.instructables.com/id/Raspberry-datalogger-with-Mysql-Highcharts/

And my working demo taken earlier today:

Right now it arbitrarily logs at 10hz. I can go as high as 150z limited by the serial data rate from the X Series AEM wideband gauge.

https://youtu.be/FMwHMelOK_A


I have the ability to log upto 8 0.5v inputs for sensors.

On the topic of sensors, I can add a 10hz GPS, throttle position, or something like a weather station(temp, humidity, pressure) for cheap if I want to. I also have room for a couple frequency inputs like driveshaft/wheel speed.
Plans for this project season:

  • Diff rebuild
    [*]It was really making noise by the end of summer, it will get new bearings and ring/pinion.
  • Fiberglass Front/Rear bumpers
    • Ordered these last week. Front bumper mounts will also support a splitter.
Fiberglass hood with cowl.
  • Less weight and I'll actually be able to close it all the way. I'll add vents just behind the radiator to help remove heat and reduce lift.
Front splitter.
  • In the name of both reduced front lift and help engine cooling. I have a pattern already made, just need to fab the thing.
  • The engine undertray and leading edge will be separate pieces so it is easier to replace when it eventually gets banged on things.

  • Sheetmetal to enclose bottom of fuel cell for NHRA rules.
    • I have a pattern, just need a sheetmetal guy to bend it up for me.
  • Driveshaft loop.
    • Probably will be mounted with plates that sandwich the trans tunnel like my trans crossmember.
Drag radials.
  • I already bought these, and extended ARP wheel studs for the rear. 26" tall 275s on a 15" wheel. A 28" tire would have been cutting it really close.
Wideband O2
  • I have the mounting for the gauge figured out, just need to buy one.
DIY Datalogging
  • I really only need to record RPM and Wideband for now. It seems I can do this pretty cheap with either RasPi or Arduino
 

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Discussion Starter #40
I've had a few people ask about the DIY Datalogger.

Including the display, I have ~$130 and many hours into this. That does not include the wideband I would have needed regardless of the logging solution.

It's built on a Raspberry Pi(RasPi going forward) that you can pickup for $34.

Which is a very small computer running a version of linux for the operating system.

It has GPIO pins which can receive or send digital signals along with the usual USB and HDMI ports. It has Ethernet, Wifi, and BlueTooth as well.

Addon boards are called hats. For this I have a high precision Analog/Digital hat and a (on the way) breadboard hat to build a circuit on.

My needs for logging are very limited, and temporary(eventually it will get a turbo LS and an ECU).

Anyway, for my purposes, I currently only need to log RPM and AFR from a wideband O2 sensor. Though, I can also log pretty much anything that outputs a frequency or 0-5v analog signal.

There's also pre-made sensors for things like 10hz GPS and weather stations. Either one of those can be had for under $40.

I bought a 7" touch screen for $70 for the in-car display.

My car has an HEI with a MSD module in it. That module outputs a 12v square wave as the tach signal, which I tapped into and isolated with a separate circuit which feeds one of the GPIO pins on the RasPi.

For a wideband I bought an AEM X Series that was on sale. It has CAN Bus, 0-5v Analog, and Serial outputs.

For simplicity sake, I'm using the Serial Out. This is limited to 10hz updates.

CAN is 100hz updates and 0-5v is 500hz updates. It's possible to use both of these as well, but, it's more complicated. Eventually I will use the 0-5v analog input.

Ignition circuits especially are really dirty signals and can potentially have large spikes. Which in an analog system usually isn't a problem, but, with a digital system like the RasPi it can ruin your day.

My solution is to use an opto-coupler/opto-isolator chip. This is just an LED on one side and a photo sensor on the other. This way light transmits the signal from one side to the other and not electricity.

If something goes wrong, that chip is all of 75cents from digikey or any other electronic component supplier.

Here is what I ended up with:

On the Tach side:
R2 is a 1/2W, 600ohm resistor to step the 12v signal from the tach down to something acceptable for the chip, it also limits current through the system. I know the schematic says 550, but, I actually have a 500, 50, 50, in series. I figured stepping the voltage down farther would leave some room for if the signal is >12v.

On the RasPi side:
The RasPi's GPIO pins work on 3.3v logic. So I feed 3.3v to the chip, when the chip completes the circuit, that is allowed on the signal wire, GPIO 21(it is actually on GPIO18 now).

Since the RasPi would get confused if that pin was allowed to just 'float' when the circuit was open, R1 is a 1/4W, 10,000 OHM resistor that pulls GPIO 21 to ground when the circuit is open. This is a "Pull Down" resistor.



Since RasPi has a fairly common use as a microcontroller, where needing to know the speed of (usually) electric motors is needed someone had already done most of the work for a program written with Python to make use of that signal now on GPIO21.

It uses the pigpio library. http://abyz.me.uk/rpi/pigpio/download.html

And the RPM Monitor example code here:
http://abyz.me.uk/rpi/pigpio/examples.html#Python code

For the AEM Wideband output, I just put a DB9 connector on the serial wires and bought a $4 Serial to USB adapter.

Again, the heavy lifting of programming is already done for reading serial data with Python. All I needed to know was the output string from the wideband, which is formatted as 14.7\r\n the "\r\n" are the characters to denote end of line and start new line.

pyserial: https://pythonhosted.org/pyserial/pyserial.html#

I then ended up with this code in Python, the 100 previous lines are how the RPM is calculated and is from the relevant link above.




That generates files that are comma separated value(CSV). Microsoft Excel and many other programs can make use of this.

Opening up my logfile in excel I can make simple graphs like this:




Right now I am working on writing directly to a mySQL database and then reading those HighCharts through a web interface.

That requires installing Nginx(open source web server), php modules(web coding language), mySQL(database), and highcharts.

Again, a lot of the foundation is already there. I just have to deal with differences in software versions.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Raspberry-datalogger-with-Mysql-Highcharts/

The cool part about that is I could then have easy to read charts on the touchscreen or, pull it up on my phone.


Now that missing $30 in my total is an Analog-Digital converter. Currently, I've just tested that it works and I'm not using it. When I have everything else working exactly as I want, I will then migrate to that.

Again, I've found the heavy lifting is done and there are Python libraries already written. But, I have not tested them. The test programs for the AD/DC hat are written in C that I know nothing about.

And eventually, it will get mounted in the glove box on sliders so it can be tucked away or pulled out.

 
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