3rd gen VQ35DE Full ECU Swap Progress Thread - Page 3 - Maxima Forums



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3rd gen VQ35DE Full ECU Swap Progress Thread

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Old 10-27-2008, 07:58 PM   #81  
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Yeah. Whenever you replace rings without boring out the cylinder, you are only making things worse unless the rings are in really bad shape, then anything would be better. If all you do is break the glaze with a light hone and use stock rings, it will seal just that much less.

I know what you mean and it make sense in a way that if it's not broken dont touch it. But I think that if the concentricity of the cylinder is within spec ( the maximum out-of round clearance on a VQ30DEK is .015 VQ35 should be similar)

If within spec I would then only polish the cylinder wall in order to only remove the carbon build-up, no need to shave any material. With a new set of stock ring and cleaned cylinder wall, I'm almost sure your compression test for each cylinder will be higher and very close to each other.

I guess my next step is to remove the heads and inspect the cylinder walls. Or do you think I should bother with a leak down test first? I can get a tester pretty cheap. But, I am not willing to spend the money on boring the cylinders right now. I'm already way over my budget because of the, "while you're in there, you might as well", mods.
Doing a leak down test is cheap and may tell you something that the guess work wont. Let say the compression is pretty much consistent from one cylinder to another after the test, then there will be no need to investigate further, you know you have a good engine. On the contrary if there is let say one or two cylinder that are off compare to the others, you will then have to investigate further to see what's the cause ( cylinder concentricity, out of spec ring etc.) or anything else.
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Old 10-27-2008, 07:59 PM   #82  
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If the crosshatch pattern is still intact, re-ringing the motor without honing is the proper method. You only want to hone if you absolutely have to.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:00 PM   #83  
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I did not rehone and I do not burn any oil. The factory x-hatch hone pattern was still clearly visible on the walls so I just left them.

My leakdown numbers went from about 40% to about 5% on a cold engine. Originally I was leaking air past the rings and through a few of the exhaust valves.

If you are pulling the heads anyways then don't bother doing a leakdown.
Thanks. Did you replace any of the valve seals since you heard air escaping from the exhaust valves?

I am guessing that since the engine is so cold, compression or leak down test numbers will vary from one cylinder to another. I will go ahead and yank the heads and inspect everything thoroughly. I will post my findings.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:03 PM   #84  
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Doing a leak down test is cheap and may tell you something that the guess work wont. Let say the compression is pretty much consistent from one cylinder to another after the test, then there will be no need to investigate further, you know you have a good engine. On the contrary if there is let say one or two cylinder that are off compare to the others, you will then have to investigate further to see what's the cause ( cylinder concentricity, out of spec ring etc.) or anything else.
That's the thing. I'm not sure if my numbers are considered inconsistent. I didn't like the dry numbers, but when I put equal amounts of oil in each cylinder, they were all near perfect.

I can get a leak down test kit for only $30. If you think it will help, then I can do it.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:21 PM   #85  
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Thanks. Did you replace any of the valve seals since you heard air escaping from the exhaust valves?
I bought the top end gasket set so all the stem seals were replaced.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:30 PM   #86  
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To be clear, new valve oil seals will not fix a leaky exhaust valve. The leak eng92 is referring to was occuring where the valve meets the seat.
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:38 PM   #87  
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Gotcha. Thanks guys.

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I bought the top end gasket set so all the stem seals were replaced.
eng92, did you happen to visually see any imperfections in the exhaust valves, seats or seals?

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To be clear, new valve oil seals will not fix a leaky exhaust valve. The leak eng92 is referring to was occuring where the valve meets the seat.
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Old 10-28-2008, 12:56 PM   #88  
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eng92, did you happen to visually see any imperfections in the exhaust valves, seats or seals?
There was no physical damage to any of the valves or seats.

There were a lot of carbon deposits in the seat area and on the back of the valves. I suspect they were preventing the valves from closing fully. Fortunately none of the valves were burned and there was no seat errosion.

I just cleaned everything up with a brass brush/wire wheel and hand lapped the valves to the seats.
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Old 10-28-2008, 01:36 PM   #89  
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There was no physical damage to any of the valves or seats.

There were a lot of carbon deposits in the seat area and on the back of the valves. I suspect they were preventing the valves from closing fully. Fortunately none of the valves were burned and there was no seat errosion.

I just cleaned everything up with a brass brush/wire wheel and hand lapped the valves to the seats.
OK thanks. I went ahead and bought a leak down tester today. I know it won't hurt to do the test and it will give me a good idea if I may run into any valve sealing issues as well. The more I know about this engine before I remove the heads, the better.
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Old 10-28-2008, 03:21 PM   #90  
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I know you are getting lots of good advice Aaron but I am on my 3rd 3.5 and haven't pulled a head off yet or modified the stock block and have never got an oil burner. I think I would run it like it is before doing anything and if it gives you problems or doesn't perform then go for it but the old " if it ain't broke don't fix it" comes to mind. I dont like to borrow trouble or do work if it isn't necessary and I hate spending money. So far it has proven to be the best route.

If you have the whole winter with nothing to do, hmmm maybe but I have other stuff I can do that is more fun.

Last edited by Jime; 10-28-2008 at 03:24 PM.
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Old 10-28-2008, 08:23 PM   #91  
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I know you are getting lots of good advice Aaron but I am on my 3rd 3.5 and haven't pulled a head off yet or modified the stock block and have never got an oil burner. I think I would run it like it is before doing anything and if it gives you problems or doesn't perform then go for it but the old " if it ain't broke don't fix it" comes to mind. I dont like to borrow trouble or do work if it isn't necessary and I hate spending money. So far it has proven to be the best route.

If you have the whole winter with nothing to do, hmmm maybe but I have other stuff I can do that is more fun.
Thanks. I can work on this engine through the entire winter, but I'd much rather get this car back on the road as soon as possible. I definitely would like to do cams, ARP bolts, and HR springs. While I'm that deep, I might as well put in HR head gaskets and do headwork.

Today, I did a brief leak down test with results of 13-15% pressure loss. I plan to conduct a much better test tomorrow to see if anything differs between cylinders with regards to the valves. That will give me a better idea of which cylinders I need to pay closer attention to once the heads are removed. But at the moment, it does not appear that I will need to touch any of the rings.
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Old 10-28-2008, 08:37 PM   #92  
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Hey Aaron, if you need new valve seal, I have an extra set of Toga valve seal I can sell you, I've posted it in the 5th for sale forum.
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Old 10-28-2008, 09:55 PM   #93  
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what about using the vq30 fuel rail. its a return system right?


i havent looked at injectors at so for all i know vq30 fuel rail will plug n play wit vq35, thus having a return system.

which for the ve fuel pump im 99% sure u will have to convert to return system
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Yes, VQ30 is a return style setup. The rail won't work with the VQ35 LIM, though. So to use the VQ30 fuel rail, you'd need a VQ30 LIM, which only matches up perfectly with the Pathfinder VQ35 heads (or VQ30 heads obviously).

As has been said, it's a trivial thing to convert the VQ35 to a return style fuel setup. Many aftermarket companies make return systems for this motor.

Of course, you could always look into the 4th gen VQ35 swap threads, there are instructions there for cobbling together a return system.
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makes sence, jus do what 4tg gen guys do to convert to return system!


i didnt think of that.
Not sure if someone mentioned this previously, but if you are using the A33B ECU then you need to convert to a BYPASS fuel system, not "return" setup. Most A32 guys switched over to return systems because they were able to utilize the stock style return system that has variable fuel pressure. The A33B likes the FP to remain at 51 PSI. You are better off using the stock VQ35 fuel rail with a bypass style FPR, just bypass the bleed off pressure to your return line and set the static FP to 51 PSI. No need to change out fuel rails or such.

BTW, my 3.5 has 30K+ miles on it and has yet to consume any oil at all. (knocks on fake wood)

Good luck man, I like the Gen 3 Maxima the most!
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Old 10-29-2008, 06:51 AM   #94  
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Hey Aaron, if you need new valve seal, I have an extra set of Toga valve seal I can sell you, I've posted it in the 5th for sale forum.
I don't think I will need any aftermarket seals. But thanks.

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Not sure if someone mentioned this previously, but if you are using the A33B ECU then you need to convert to a BYPASS fuel system, not "return" setup. Most A32 guys switched over to return systems because they were able to utilize the stock style return system that has variable fuel pressure. The A33B likes the FP to remain at 51 PSI. You are better off using the stock VQ35 fuel rail with a bypass style FPR, just bypass the bleed off pressure to your return line and set the static FP to 51 PSI. No need to change out fuel rails or such.

BTW, my 3.5 has 30K+ miles on it and has yet to consume any oil at all. (knocks on fake wood)

Good luck man, I like the Gen 3 Maxima the most!
Thanks. I have a Nismo AFPR that I hope to be able to use in order to set pressure to 51psi.
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Old 10-29-2008, 02:47 PM   #95  
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I did some further leak down testing today.



Here are the average results with over 5 tests per cylinder:

1: 16%
3: 15%
5: 16%

2: 15%
4: 16%
6: 16%

I'm guessing that since this engine hasn't ran in a while, that's why the first dry compression test was erratic between cylinders. But, now that I've turned this engine over so many times by hand and with the starter, the numbers have now gotten better.

Also, during the leak down test, I paid close attention to where the air was leaking out. In all cylinders, a good rush of air could be heard in the crankcase (air slipping by rings). And the same exact amount of air was coming from the intake ports, exhaust ports, and coolant housing. I could not tell any difference between any of the cylinders.
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Old 10-29-2008, 06:17 PM   #96  
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clue me in - is 15% a good result?
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Old 10-29-2008, 07:45 PM   #97  
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I am mainly happy that all the cylinders are close to one another with valve and head gasket leakage that is consistent. But, 15% is doable. If it were under 10%, that would be a pretty good race motor. But, considering how most VQ35s have sub par rings, I am happy with it. Some motors can still be just fine as high as 20%. But when you start to get over that, you really need to think about a complete rebuild.
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Old 10-29-2008, 07:49 PM   #98  
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I am mainly happy that all the cylinders are close to one another with valve and head gasket leakage that is consistent. But, 15% is doable. If it were under 10%, that would be a pretty good race motor. But, considering how most VQ35s have sub par rings, I am happy with it. Some motors can still be just fine as high as 20%. But when you start to get over that, you really need to think about a complete rebuild.
Ah, so I guess my engine being at ~95% leakdown could contribute to my loss of power?





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Old 10-29-2008, 07:51 PM   #99  
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Ah, so I guess my engine being at ~95% leakdown could contribute to my loss of power?





Haha Yeah, I think so. 95% usually means that your rings are gone or the valves are completely stuck open or the cylinder isn't at TDC.
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Old 10-29-2008, 07:53 PM   #100  
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Haha Yeah, I think so. 95% usually means that your rings are gone or the valves are completely stuck open or the cylinder isn't at TDC.
Rings? Oh...I was wondering why they gave me so many cool bracelets with my rebuild kit.
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Old 10-31-2008, 03:24 PM   #101  
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Finally got it on the stand! Now it's time to have fun!

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Old 10-31-2008, 06:29 PM   #102  
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Finally got it on the stand! Now it's time to have fun!


Shweet. Make sure you rotate it every 15 minutes to ensure even cooking.

Your toys make me jealous.
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Old 10-31-2008, 10:25 PM   #103  
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That engine is well taken care of and definitely in great condition damn! Nice pick up.
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Old 11-01-2008, 05:43 AM   #104  
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hey were you planning on cams
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Old 11-01-2008, 06:08 AM   #105  
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Finally got it on the stand! Now it's time to have fun!

FRAM



FTMFL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!
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Old 11-01-2008, 08:06 AM   #106  
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I am mainly happy that all the cylinders are close to one another with valve and head gasket leakage that is consistent. But, 15% is doable. If it were under 10%, that would be a pretty good race motor. But, considering how most VQ35s have sub par rings, I am happy with it. Some motors can still be just fine as high as 20%. But when you start to get over that, you really need to think about a complete rebuild.
The VE I built had <1% in each cylinder at 30k miles.
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Old 11-03-2008, 07:55 AM   #107  
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That engine is well taken care of and definitely in great condition damn! Nice pick up.
So far, it's clean on the inside. I'll know more once I remove the timing cover and heads.

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hey were you planning on cams
Oh yeah.

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FRAM

FTMFL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!
I didn't do it.

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The VE I built had <1% in each cylinder at 30k miles.
Did you use Total Seal rings? Or just stock replacements? Did you bore or hone the cylinders?
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Old 11-03-2008, 04:50 PM   #108  
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I used whatever rings that came with the 11:1 JE pistons I bought. I think I remmeber hearing Total Seal during my discussions with the machine shop. I just told them to put something in there they'd be willing to stick their name on. He said he'd use good stuff.

When the rings didn't seat after 10k miles, I called the machine shop back and talked to them. He mentioned they were Chrome rings and it's not uncommon for them not to seat due to the nissan cyl walls being so hard as well as the rings. neither of them wear enough to seat properly. DOH.



(I had them build the bottom end since I didn't have the time, tools, or experience to deal with mic'ing the crank and bearings and etc. Plus I had them balance the bottom end, so no point in me building it for the $100 they charged to assemble the shortblock.)

fortunately the guy said he'd stand behind it too. bring the engine back in anytime and they'd go through it and install new rings for only the parts cost. sweeeet.



Cyls were bored 0.5mm over. (87.5mm)
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Old 11-03-2008, 04:59 PM   #109  
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I used whatever rings that came with the 11:1 JE pistons I bought. I think I remmeber hearing Total Seal during my discussions with the machine shop. I just told them to put something in there they'd be willing to stick their name on. He said he'd use good stuff.

When the rings didn't seat after 10k miles, I called the machine shop back and talked to them. He mentioned they were Chrome rings and it's not uncommon for them not to seat due to the nissan cyl walls being so hard as well as the rings. neither of them wear enough to seat properly. DOH.



(I had them build the bottom end since I didn't have the time, tools, or experience to deal with mic'ing the crank and bearings and etc. Plus I had them balance the bottom end, so no point in me building it for the $100 they charged to assemble the shortblock.)

fortunately the guy said he'd stand behind it too. bring the engine back in anytime and they'd go through it and install new rings for only the parts cost. sweeeet.



Cyls were bored 0.5mm over. (87.5mm)
Some of the Total Seal rings are chrome. It definitely sounds like you went with the best (Total Seal). It's really the only way you can get the leak down numbers you were getting. If you went with new OEM rings with a fresh over bored block, you'd probably still get 5+%.

It's quite a good setup you have there!
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Old 11-03-2008, 05:50 PM   #110  
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Good luck Aaron.
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Old 11-04-2008, 06:39 PM   #111  
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damn took me a while to read all this useful information that all you guys have posted about Aarons motor swap. Aaron, i hope you finish this damn swap already so that the 3rd gen community can finally leave the 160+hp range and step up into the 200+ N/A. i think i will just pick up a 3.5 along with all the parts that you will use for yours and do the same to my 3rd gen. Aaron finish this swap buddy and good luck.
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Old 11-04-2008, 07:09 PM   #112  
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Amazing Aaron. Subscribed!

The Raleigh guys haven't been out to the track in years, but I'll keep up with your progress and maybe we can meet up in the future.

I've got to get my 328i running again

Jon (JMAXIMA) now has an Infiniti I35

Will (KINGMAX) wrecked his 97 maxima, and recently got a 99 maxima

and Brandon (Ladeesman) now has a 04 Audi S4
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Old 11-05-2008, 08:30 AM   #113  
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Good luck Aaron.
Thanks.

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damn took me a while to read all this useful information that all you guys have posted about Aarons motor swap. Aaron, i hope you finish this damn swap already so that the 3rd gen community can finally leave the 160+hp range and step up into the 200+ N/A. i think i will just pick up a 3.5 along with all the parts that you will use for yours and do the same to my 3rd gen. Aaron finish this swap buddy and good luck.
I'm stepping up from the 170whp VE to 260whp 3.5!

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Amazing Aaron. Subscribed!

The Raleigh guys haven't been out to the track in years, but I'll keep up with your progress and maybe we can meet up in the future.

I've got to get my 328i running again

Jon (JMAXIMA) now has an Infiniti I35

Will (KINGMAX) wrecked his 97 maxima, and recently got a 99 maxima

and Brandon (Ladeesman) now has a 04 Audi S4
Awesome! Thanks for the update. I hope we can do another track meet next Spring.
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Old 11-05-2008, 06:17 PM   #114  
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Thanks.



I'm stepping up from the 170whp VE to 260whp 3.5!



Awesome! Thanks for the update. I hope we can do another track meet next Spring.
yes, please step up with this cuz today i found out my friend who use to work for my local Nissan dealer has a '03 3.5L VQ from an I30 with less 60K miles on it willing to sell it to me for $400. what do you think? i think will get it off of him so i can start my build along with yours.
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Old 11-05-2008, 06:36 PM   #115  
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yes, please step up with this cuz today i found out my friend who use to work for my local Nissan dealer has a '03 3.5L VQ from an I30 with less 60K miles on it willing to sell it to me for $400. what do you think? i think will get it off of him so i can start my build along with yours.
Orly?
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Old 11-05-2008, 08:17 PM   #116  
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yes, please step up with this cuz today i found out my friend who use to work for my local Nissan dealer has a '03 3.5L VQ from an I30 with less 60K miles on it willing to sell it to me for $400. what do you think? i think will get it off of him so i can start my build along with yours.
That engine will work great. Does the engine run right now? Can you warm it up and test compression before you purchase it? If not, is he trustworthy and can vouch for where the engine has been? Can he guarantee it hasn't been run without oil or anything?

But, if you are really interested in doing the swap, I will be more than happy to help you out. Also, I will be posting as much information as I can in this thread about the details of my swap.
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Old 11-06-2008, 03:45 PM   #117  
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Subscribed. A NW guy and myself were thinking of fitting a VQ35 to a 2nd or 3rd gen just for the fun of it. Be good to see what you did for a potential future project.

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Old 11-06-2008, 05:54 PM   #118  
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That engine will work great. Does the engine run right now? Can you warm it up and test compression before you purchase it? If not, is he trustworthy and can vouch for where the engine has been? Can he guarantee it hasn't been run without oil or anything?

But, if you are really interested in doing the swap, I will be more than happy to help you out. Also, I will be posting as much information as I can in this thread about the details of my swap.
well, he told me that he has had the engine for almost a year now and that it came out of an '03 I30 that was involved in a crash. he was gonna swap it into his 240 but i guess he just bailed out and doesn't want to do it anymore. so he offered to sell me the engine for $400 and for me to swap it into my 3rd gen. but i will get more info from him about it before the accident to that I30. and trust me, i really want to swap it into my car.
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Old 11-06-2008, 06:06 PM   #119  
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Originally Posted by GRNMAXDMON View Post
well, he told me that he has had the engine for almost a year now and that it came out of an '03 I30 that was involved in a crash. he was gonna swap it into his 240 but i guess he just bailed out and doesn't want to do it anymore. so he offered to sell me the engine for $400 and for me to swap it into my 3rd gen. but i will get more info from him about it before the accident to that I30. and trust me, i really want to swap it into my car.
Run a carfax check. He should be able to find the VIN on that 03 I30. Maybe the junkyard he got it from still has it on file. But it's nice to be able to confirm mileage of the engine.
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Old 11-06-2008, 06:17 PM   #120  
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I finally got this dang crank pulley off!!



Since the engine is on the stand, I was scared of tipping the entire thing over with the cheater bar. I first locked the engine with the "suitable tool" (cough, screwdriver) in the driveplate teeth. It was tough holding the screwdriver while lifting on the huge cheater bar. And my impact wrench wasn't nearly strong enough. So I borrowed a friend's 675 ft-lbs max impact wrench and it didn't even phase it! And I've been soaking this thing in PB Blaster for the past 36 hours.

And I was about to take out the torch to heat it up, but just a little while ago, KRRZ350 gave me an idea to lock the engine in place. On the 3.5, there is a stud that sticks out of the timing cover used for the lowest nut on the front engine mount. Simply wrap a belt around the crank pulley and fold it under itself. The stud will keep the engine from turning. This pic is for illustrative purposes only. It's best to wrap the belt around the inside rib since it's closer to the stud. Then put a 3 foot cheater bar on that crank pulley bolt and that's it!



Thanks Kevin for the idea!
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