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Turbo a 2nd gen.

Old 12-10-2002, 12:41 AM
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Turbo a 2nd gen.

At first you probably thought this was someone else going to ask how to go about adding a turbo to a 2nd gen Max. Well, I am almost done the conversion, and let me tell you, it isn't an easy task. I had started to post pictures awhile back but deleted the thread as I got grief from a couple people. Anyway, whoever tells you that it is a simple little swap, forget it. Oh sure the easy way out is to pay a shop to do it all for you, but who really has that kind of money to play with??? I took some of the money that would have gone to a shop and my cams ground to a better profile suited for a turbo profile. Aside from some of the obvious issues (intake, etc.) there are a whole series of little trinkety things to consider as well. For those of you who are interested, I will be following this thread up later this week with a link to a site where I will be posting all the pics and details of the swap. All I can say is it most certainly isn't a simple bolt on procedure of swapping parts. As an example, you have to have the stock Max oil pan modified to accept the oil drain back from the turbo. You have to fabricate a custom motor mount for the front side. There are several plugs (tps, airflow meter, AIC, ACC, etc.,) that all have to be lengthened . . . considerably, the knock sensor barely fits beside the read motor mount . . . and I mean barely, and the exhaust routing is a major issue. The turn down that mounts on the turbo while in the 300ZX does not work in the Max, if you try, it plows right into the starter, so there is some major fabricating needed there, as well, the steel inlet tube for the turbo works great to clear the alternator but totally interferes with the A/C compressor. And the list goes on. As someone else stated, if you have enough money, anything is possible. I am trying to do this swap to demonstrate that it doesn't need to cost a truck load of coin, but that it does take quite a bit of effort. I am almost done and as mentioned above, I will post a link later this week to all the pics and details. Hopefully this will help some people out.
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Old 12-10-2002, 07:07 AM
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I will be keeping up with your progress as well and let me know when the site is up Ill post a Sticky for it for the forum.
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Old 12-10-2002, 09:23 AM
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Finally!

I've been waiting to see if someone was going to do the turbo! I can't wait till I see the pics. What are you seeing in terms of cost so far?

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Old 12-10-2002, 09:44 AM
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Costs.

I will have a rough breakdown on the site when I post the link. It isn't too bad really. I incurred extra expense in have my cams re-ground, having my heads rebuilt, having the crank ground, etc., etc. But one will be able to discern between the costs as it will all be broken down.
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Old 12-10-2002, 12:30 PM
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Re: Costs.

Originally posted by KALSC
I will have a rough breakdown on the site when I post the link. It isn't too bad really. I incurred extra expense in have my cams re-ground, having my heads rebuilt, having the crank ground, etc., etc. But one will be able to discern between the costs as it will all be broken down.
Hell, I know a bunch of the guys in the Sec gen group on yahoo will want to see this too. You should join.

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/...nnissanmaxima/

In fact all second gen. owners should check that out too. Great resource there as well as here, just be sure you don't get the other second generation maxima group on yahoo, with the green and white color scheme. The guy that runs it is a complete *******, hell I bet ya Q can vouch for that.

Sarin
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Old 12-11-2002, 11:49 PM
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I thought that you can just change the manifolds, or headers, or something? I know that I inquired about this before and it was said that swapping the VG30 with the VG30T (along with the ECU and timing and such)was all it took. Am I wrong or you have to really change the entire engine?
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Old 12-12-2002, 12:03 AM
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Hmmmm . . .

Well, it's like I said, I too had heard about a lot of speculation regarding the swap and it seemed as though no one had really performed it (the swap). So, that being said, if you want to do it right, then you really should either get a turbo motor or build up a real turbo motor. If you study how turbo motors are built, for the street and daily drivers, you will see that they are typically lower compression engines. If you take a higher compression engine (like the stock Maxx motor) and slap a turbo on it, not only will you suffer from gross detonation, but you have to really watch the psi your turbo pumps out, can you say blown head gaskets to name a few? Also, you can play around with higher boost levels as easily either. One thing I think most guys overlook too is the oil pan modification needed. Oil is fed to the turbo cartridge, but, how is it supposed to get back to the pan??? On the 300ZX the pan has a drain back spout that hooks up to the drain back spout on the turbo. So you have to take a stock Maxx oil pan and install (weld) one of these drain back spouts to mate up with the one on the turbo. Also, like I mentioned, the intake tube for the turbo is a real P.I.T.A. It bends right up into where the A/C compressor goes. Sure you can ditch the compressor, but then what, no air? If you ditch the compressor you can use a longer belt to wrap around the alternator but the belt contact patch is diminished and that is something you don't want to do on an alternator. Also, as mentioned, the exhaust is another butt ugly snake. The stock 300ZX exhaust down spout slams right into where the stock Maxx starter is, so you have to take that piece, cut it a certain way (you will see pictures) and then weld up the new exhaust pipe to wrap down and around to mate up with the stock Maxx flex-pipe. Dude, the list goes on and on and on. Like I said in my original post, there is a hell of a lot more to this swap than just changing the intake and exhaust manifolds, trust me. In other words, don't count on it being a nice and tidy weekend project. Hope this helps a little. I am on target for getting the site ready and posting the link here, no worries guys, it's coming. I am just fighting with rebuilding my cv joints right now. The boots were showing signs of wear so I figured while I had them out I might as well clean then up, re-grease them and put new boots on. Messy, messy, messy.
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Old 12-13-2002, 11:44 PM
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Link.

Well, here is the link to the site where I will be documenting the VG30ET swap. I haven't posted anything yet, there is an explanation at the site. You would do good to visit the link and then bookmark it as well.

http://www.sqntech.com/maxima/
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Old 12-17-2002, 11:30 PM
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Finally!

I posted the link last week, today I finally had a chance to publish some of the text and pictures. There will be many updates to the site and it will be revised often. Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. Cheers!!!
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Old 12-18-2002, 12:27 PM
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Re: Finally!

That is an awesome page. It looks like you ran into issues and had good success in fixing them. Also are you going to use the Z31 ECU? If you do it is the same except that you will need to add a wire to pin #29 for the detonation sensor. Other than that its plug and play.

Originally posted by KALSC
I posted the link last week, today I finally had a chance to publish some of the text and pictures. There will be many updates to the site and it will be revised often. Feel free to shoot me any questions you have. Cheers!!!
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Old 12-18-2002, 02:28 PM
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Thanks.

There is A LOT more information and pictures to come. As for the ECU, for now I will be using the Z31 ECU and running the wire. Eventually I am going to install near the same ignition system I did on my 5.0. I bought a Boost Timing Master from MSD and love it. You can adjust the amount of retard via an in-cabin dial which is relative to each pound of boost, so I have total control over the ignition retard. That will be in the spring, so for now, the stock Z31 ECU it is. Once I start playing with the boost though, then comes all the rest of the goodies!
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Old 12-18-2002, 04:11 PM
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Old 12-18-2002, 06:39 PM
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dude GREAT WORK!!!!! and gret job on the documentation, it always helps to have pics and a writeup! I'm helping Max O/D with this same swap into a 3rd gen, we are almost done...check out some of our pics on Turbomaxima.com

I have one question if you don't mind...
do you have any pics of the oil pan and where you welded the return bung?? not even really pics but maybe a measurement of how far down from the top of the pan it should be welded on.

Great job man, and you are right its not an easy job, from helping out Jahlil I've realized once the motor is in and all that its the little things that catch up with you!! BEST OF LUCK can't wait to see the final product!!!!
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Old 12-18-2002, 07:39 PM
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Hmmmm . . .

As for exact measurements, I don't have any. What I did was a mock up of the Maxima oilpan with the turbo mounted and then pinpointed the exact location needed for the bung. I then took the pan off, cut the hole and welded the bung on. I will try and take some better close-ups for the site.

Also, you are dead on when you say, and I said, this isn't as easy as it looks. It isn't no plug and play, it isn't no bolt on swap, and it sure as heck isn't a weekend project.

Once complete, it will look like a factory install. Once I get all the bugs worked out and have it running ultra-reliable, then comes the performance hop-ups and eye candy. :-)
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Old 12-18-2002, 07:43 PM
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Wow, way to go! I wanted turbo, but it was all of the little things that made me go for a NA build. Hopefully you can inspire others to follow what you've done.
BTW, did you get the block O-ringed and install a copper head gasket? Because with that set-up the max's 9:1 compression won't be a problem at all for the turbo. Also, could you just use the z31's oil pan? or will it not fit under the car?
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Old 12-18-2002, 08:13 PM
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I used the . . .

The blocks between the VG30E and the VG30ET are the same. What I did was locate an actual 300ZX turbo engine and rebuilt it, thereby using the dished pistons and retaining the stock turbo spec. compression. Yes you can griive the heads and use the ringed head gastkets, but that doesn't solve the SERIOUS detonation problems when using a higher compression engine with forced induction. For this round, I chose to rebuild with a stock set up AND THEN start adding the goodies(boost timing master, intercooler, hybrid turbo, higher boost levels, BOV, external wastegate, etc.). It's that some old attage, start with something you know and then make one change at a time otherwise if things go south, you won't know what change screwed things up, especially considering this is fairly untouched territory in that not to many other people have done this with the 2nd gens. Better to be safe than sorry for now. As I progress in adding the goodies, I will for sure keep the site updated.

The Z oilpan will not fit due to the lower brace the Max's use, AND because of the way the exhaust is routed on the Max. The rearward (relative to the front of the engine) recess in the Max pan is where the brace and exhaust slip through. If you put the Z pan on, the brace won't fit (you'd need a custom solution) and you would really have trouble routing the exhaust.

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Old 12-18-2002, 10:08 PM
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Re: I used the . . .

You won't need a BTM with a Z31T ECU, it would cause you to lose power rather than gain it. Given intake, 3in exhaust from the turbo back and 11-13psi the car should make 210-218whp. Since you have cams and hopefully headwork you should see 228-245whp. After that you get close to maxing out the stock injectors, fuel pump and MAF. If you want more power your going to have to go stand alone or JWT. You can get the upgrade info here http://z31.com/tfaq/.

Originally posted by KALSC
The blocks between the VG30E and the VG30ET are the same. What I did was locate an actual 300ZX turbo engine and rebuilt it, thereby using the dished pistons and retaining the stock turbo spec. compression. Yes you can griive the heads and use the ringed head gastkets, but that doesn't solve the SERIOUS detonation problems when using a higher compression engine with forced induction. For this round, I chose to rebuild with a stock set up AND THEN start adding the goodies(boost timing master, intercooler, hybrid turbo, higher boost levels, BOV, external wastegate, etc.)
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Old 12-18-2002, 10:18 PM
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Originally posted by surfermax92
Wow, way to go! I wanted turbo, but it was all of the little things that made me go for a NA build. Hopefully you can inspire others to follow what you've done.
BTW, did you get the block O-ringed and install a copper head gasket? Because with that set-up the max's 9:1 compression won't be a problem at all for the turbo. Also, could you just use the z31's oil pan? or will it not fit under the car?
When your done with the 85, you wanna do an 86?

Sarin
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Old 12-18-2002, 11:02 PM
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LOL!

Sure! I am having fun with this. The cool part about this is that if I do any other 2nd gens, they will be a heck of a lot easier to do since all the funny stuff will be sorted out.
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Old 12-19-2002, 06:28 AM
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Turbos...

You could probably make some extra cash by offering some of the 'fabbed' parts needed for sale. Like, making the modified mount and oil pans, etc..., that you needed to build, and selling them to those who are interested...since you already have the information at hand.
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Old 12-19-2002, 03:48 PM
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87 maxima looking to be hiped up

whats up people.. i had baughten a 87 nissan maxima.. and i want to fix it up... i have been in contact with the people at swapjdm.com and thay set me to this site.. and i dont know anyone who actually likes maximas besides me.. but this is perfect that i found a site for maximas.. and i was told that a vg30et would fit in my car almost perfect.. cause from what i'm told that the vg30dett will not fit correctly and i love the maxima.. but i'm used to fixed up hondas.. and as soon as i got my maxima i fell inlove with it.. and now the max is the only import i'll drive now.. now i really need help if anyone can please help me cause i want to turbo my maxima.. but dont know if i should find a vg30et or fabricate a turbo onto the car..
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Old 12-19-2002, 06:36 PM
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Re: 87 maxima looking to be hiped up

Originally posted by x_x_maxima_x_x
whats up people.. i had baughten a 87 nissan maxima.. and i want to fix it up... i have been in contact with the people at swapjdm.com and thay set me to this site.. and i dont know anyone who actually likes maximas besides me.. but this is perfect that i found a site for maximas.. and i was told that a vg30et would fit in my car almost perfect.. cause from what i'm told that the vg30dett will not fit correctly and i love the maxima.. but i'm used to fixed up hondas.. and as soon as i got my maxima i fell inlove with it.. and now the max is the only import i'll drive now.. now i really need help if anyone can please help me cause i want to turbo my maxima.. but dont know if i should find a vg30et or fabricate a turbo onto the car..
The VG30DETT is a too wide, you would have it up against the firewall and radiator. Though it you made modifications to both it might work, because all the stuff that is around the firewall, you don't want to **** with it. Your better off with just a VG30ET.

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Old 12-19-2002, 07:35 PM
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I agree.

As the saying goes, money can solve a lot of issues. If you have a decent amount of coin and want a trick looking set up and good performance, do the custom mod and trick it right out. BUT, if you want pure performance and aren't worried about good looking items that make you go any faster, invest that saved money into the go-fast parts. What's neat to is A LOT of people are running insane amounts of power through stock bottom ends on both imports and domestics. You don't have to spend huge dollars on the forged cranks and "H" beam rods, blah, blah, blah, unless of course you are a serious racer where the needs warants such expense and high torture reliability. Anyone ever hear of the guy who built up a stock 351W for his Thunderbird and did a custom TWIN supercharger set up and was running insane quarter miles??? No??? Check out this link, http://www.toohighpsi.com/SCTC/sctc.htm (be sure to check all the buttons on the menu, lots of good info there). That makes my point about stock parts (in good shape) can make good on the street too. I know that link has nothing to do with our Maximas, but it's the principle behind what those guys are doing. Ultra cool! The link to thier main page is http://www.toohighpsi.com. Enjoy.
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Old 12-19-2002, 09:26 PM
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Just a quick reminder.

Hi everyone! I just wanted to remind everyone to keep checking the site where the info is. I am making almost daily updates with pictures and text. Things are moving along swiftly now as I am nearing completion. I have set up a new interface for the site, it should make it a little more user friendly! Cheers!
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Old 12-19-2002, 11:11 PM
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KALSC, about the radiator fan setup...what are your plans for that?? just run one stock fan, will that be suffient? Me and my friend ran into the same problem doing this swap on his 3rd gen, the compressor hit the fan shroud. we decided to swap in a custom mounted 16" slim-line puller fan which will cover the left/driver side half of the radiator, do you fore see any possible "daily driver" issues with a single fan setup like this??(especially come summer time)

Thanks for any suggestions.
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Old 12-19-2002, 11:17 PM
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Hmmm . . .

Well, from what I have been able to tell, the second, smaller fan only ever came on when the A/C was on and the ambient temperature was above a certain setting. If I understand things correctly, and please correct me if I am wrong, but I truly thought the second fan was only for auxilliary cooling if/when the A/C was on and the larger, main fan couldn't keep up? Now, if that is the case, and in my case since I stripped my A/C right out to make way for an intercooler, I won't need the smaller fan anyway. If, however, I am wrong, I can simply put in a 10" slimline in the hole of the shroud or splurge and install two 12" slimlines. Time will tell, we'll see when summer hits. I guess too since the engine is going to be making more power than a stock Max engine, cooling may become an issue. Again, time will tell. If that is the case, then in go two 12" slimlines.
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Old 12-20-2002, 01:56 AM
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so you think that i could use parts from the vg30dett and replace them onto the stock vg30(e) if not.. how much would a vg30et cost me and where could i get one.. cause if i cane use the parts from a vg30dett i'll find another vg30(e) and rebuild it..
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Old 12-20-2002, 09:16 AM
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Not sure.

To be honest, I don't know much about the twin turbo version other than it is physicaly wider than the single turbo version. I didn't put much effort into researching the TT since I figured it would be a total bear to install, if at all. I sincerely don't think you can just bolt on some parts from the TT version and have it fit, there isn't much room between the engine and the firewall on the backside of the engine. That being said, I think you would do very well to install the VG30ET and play with that. Stock they come with a T3, maybe start farting about with some hybrid turbos and such. As for cost, check your local parts yards. If they don't have anything local, they should be able to find you something using thier vast network of connectivity. The cost if kind of a funny thing, I have seen the VG30ET range from as low as $350 CDN to as high as $1500 CDN, FOR THE SAME DAMN ENGINE!!!!!!! So, take your time and look around.
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Old 12-20-2002, 10:16 AM
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Originally posted by x_x_maxima_x_x
so you think that i could use parts from the vg30dett and replace them onto the stock vg30(e) if not.. how much would a vg30et cost me and where could i get one.. cause if i cane use the parts from a vg30dett i'll find another vg30(e) and rebuild it..
No, nothing would easily swap at all, as Nissan changed the block design slightly in 1989, for the 3rd Gen Max's. About the only thing you may be able to swap out would be the pistons, and MAYBE, the rods, depending upon the crank profile. The main journals, oilpan, etc, are all different. Even the heads are slightly different, even for the VG30E from that vintage, and the VG30DE was a totally different animal - the only thing shared between the 92+ vg30e & vg30de/vg30dett was the block. The specs I found show the bore and stroke to be the same for the entire vg30 series, but the cranks could have diffent diameter mains, etc...wouldn't bad if they were larger, but if they are smaller, it may be tough to find bearing to close the gap.

I was looking into swapping a 90 model vg30e into my wagon about a year ago, as i found a good, low milage 90 gxe that had been sideswiped, and was being sold for a parts car. But when I found out the engine would be such a pain to install, I backed away from the deal.
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Old 12-20-2002, 05:14 PM
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Originally posted by x_x_maxima_x_x
so you think that i could use parts from the vg30dett and replace them onto the stock vg30(e) if not.. how much would a vg30et cost me and where could i get one.. cause if i cane use the parts from a vg30dett i'll find another vg30(e) and rebuild it..
I would avoid trying to fit new vg30dett parts on an older vg30e. There are some revisions and plus that, it may be more hassle than what it's worth. If you really want performance, just do like KALSC.

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Old 12-20-2002, 09:36 PM
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YIKES!

Hey dude, I just checked out the race engine guys you posted, true enough, they boast 300hp at 7000rpm, but for $9000 US??? Yikes!!! Do you have any idea what kind of a set up I could build for just under $15,000 CDN (I'm in Canada). What's interesting is the engine they picture on their site boasts the turbo intake yet they list it as a non-turbo application motor. Anyway, I'm not being nit-picky, I still trying to find my jaw somewhere on the floor after seeing their price tag.
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Old 12-20-2002, 10:23 PM
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Re: YIKES!

KALSC,

When I was looking at your intake plenum setup, and idea popped up in my head. Couldn't you use a 3rd gen intake plenum? Granted you would have to run another throttle cable for the second throttle body, but that sucker bends down right near the turbo. Also I wanted to ask what how many psi of boost are you planning to dial in on the turbo? With the stock turbo, how much power maximum could the engine put out?

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Old 12-21-2002, 12:13 AM
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For starters . . .

For starters I am just going to run the turbo at "stock" psi, what ever it puts out all on it's own. As the swap proves to be stable and reliable, then I begin to play. I am not going to go too crazy on the boost until get an IC installed, etc., etc. I like the idea of the boost timing master which I dial in because then I have full control over the timing retard as opposed to the computer stepping in and making the car a dog.

As for the maximum power output, I am not sure yet. In my case, I also had the cams ground to a more aggressive profile, a far cry from stock. Once it's all ironed out in it's "stock" form, I plan on getting some "at the wheels" hp test done as I make each change. All that information will be posted on my site.

Hope this answers your questions.

Have a great weekend!!
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Old 12-21-2002, 12:36 AM
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Some good info here.

Here's a link to some interesting info I found. I don't know, maybe you guys have seen this before. Anyway, give it a looksie.

http://www.geocities.com/MotorCity/F...1/zedmods.html
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Old 12-21-2002, 11:37 AM
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Due to the axles???

I suppose it may pull a little under hard acceleration due to the very modest difference in axle length, it's called torque steer.

I alway understood it was more from the type of differential used to couple the axles. You don't notice it as much in a rear wheen drive car because you don't steer with the back end, but if you have unequal power to the wheels in the front end, you will definately notice it pull due to the unequal power transfer of the stock differential in the transmission.

The best case scenario would be to find a torsen type diff for these trannies, but I don't think they make one. I heard that a limited slip is available though.

So, I think the torque steer problem has more to do with the unequal power transfer due to the stock diff in the tranny as opposed to the modest difference in axle length. That being said, I have a second 5 speed here that I am going to rebuild (beefy) and install it in the spring. It will have all the latest goodies I can find for this tranny. :-)
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Old 12-23-2002, 07:06 AM
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Re: Due to the axles???

Since we all now know that a 3rd Gen tranny is installable into our cars with little extra effort, I beleive it's possible to locate a limited slip out of a 3rd gen. I know there were limited slip avail in the 4th gen, but not sure if those are compatible with our cars...this would be your best bet in combatting the torque steer. Even then, you will get some, due to the unequal length half shafts.
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Old 12-23-2002, 10:26 AM
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Re: Re: Due to the axles???

Originally posted by MaxWgn
Since we all now know that a 3rd Gen tranny is installable into our cars with little extra effort, I beleive it's possible to locate a limited slip out of a 3rd gen. I know there were limited slip avail in the 4th gen, but not sure if those are compatible with our cars...this would be your best bet in combatting the torque steer. Even then, you will get some, due to the unequal length half shafts.
There might be a remote possibility that a 4th gen will fit. I dunno had the mounting pattern is, nor how the mounts attached, but considering that the 4th gen tranny is similar to the 3rd gen with the VE motor, there might be a chance, since the tranny mounts are the same. You might have to fabricate an adaptor. I will look into this and see if I can find anything.

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Old 12-23-2002, 01:03 PM
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Splash Pans

Hey KALSC,

I was looking at your latest pics. I notice something. where you have your wastegate exiting, it goes right into where the one of the splashpan is. Will you be modifying the pan for the exhuast? I know for sure you don't want to leave that underside exposed to the elements. Ask maxwgn, he's been having issues no splash pans on his maxima.

Sarin
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