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My car's journal thread Top post has been re-formatted to just run down the mod list with thread links as appropriate. Current Mods/Setup: Base Specs: 2009 Platinum Graphite, 7AT, Sport

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Old 04-16-2009, 11:33 PM   #1 (permalink)
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My car's journal thread Top post has been re-formatted to just run down the mod list with thread links as appropriate.

Current Mods/Setup:

Base Specs:
2009 Platinum Graphite, 7AT, Sport and Touring Packages
No factory nav unit, no splashguards

Engine Performance Mods:
Engine block + heads replaced (spun crank bearing on original), donor car was a wrecked 2013 w/ 5K miles - June 2014.
Stillen Gen 3 Intake
Motordyne M370 Intake Manifold
Fast Intentions long-tube headers
Fast Intentions catback (18" res + CF muffler options)
UpRev Osiris ECU Flash + Dyno tuning

Handling/Safety Mods
SPL Front Camber Arms
Cage!
Stillen/APRacing BBK
JRZ RS1 Coilovers from Forged Performance - (pics) (review)
Hotchkis Swaybars
CZP Braided Brake Lines
Nismo Extended Wheel Studs (50mm front, 60mm rear)
Seats: Sparco EVO / EVO-II-US, Sparco Harnesses
Steering: Sparco R383 (330mm), NRG Hub + Gen3 QR

Reliability / Cooling / etc Mods
CSF Radiator w/o Condensor.
Setrab 25-row 9-Series Oil Cooler + Mocal 180F thermo plate
Spek-Pro Oil Pressure Gauge w/ Alarm
Setrab 19-row 6-series trans cooler (with smaller lines/fittings)
AM Performance Baffled Oil Pan
Z-speed aluminum front under tray
Elite Engineering Oil Catch Can
Stillen Front Brake Ducting
Stillen grounding kit
Intake heat-shielded
CJM Fuel Starve Fix

Deleted Factory Parts:
It's pretty much a completely gutted race-car now. No A/C, no heater core, no radio, no interior, no side windows, doors gutted. I did keep the upper dash cover, but that's about it. The only easy big-ticket weight reductions left are Lexan front/rear windows.

Misc
Evo2 Battery
Z1 Urethane engine/trans mounts
Race Keeper - Data logging system (A/V, GPS, OBD-II, Accelerometers, etc)
Spohn-style Custom mesh front grill
Speed Bleeders
FilterMag
Red Start Switch!

Fluids, Wear items, etc:
Oil: Motul 300V 5W30
OilFilter: K&N HP-1010
Trans: Motul Multi-ATF
Diff: Royal Purple 75W90
Coolant: 80/20 mix + MoCool or WaterWetter
Brake Fluid: Motul RBF600
Brake Pads: Carbon Lorraine RC6E
Brake Rotors: Stillen's APRacing BBK
Tire/Wheel Setups:
Dry: Forgestar F14 18x10 square, Hankook RS-3 275/35
Dry: Forgestar F14 18x10 square, Continental GT-O 285/645
Wet: Conti 265/645 EC-WETs, need some 18x9s to mount them on, though!

Stuff on the longer-term todo list:
Cool-shirt system is a must!
An aftermarket true 1.5-way LSD (thinking Cusco RS), + pumped cooler (maybe use my old Setrab trans cooler core).
Read end bushings, maybe subframe bushings as well.
More aftermarket suspension bits (various arms/joints/bushings - more adjustability, less random play).
GTM 7AT Valve Body Upgrade?? (or possibly straight to one of their full trans upgrade packages??)
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Old 04-16-2009, 11:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Great detailed start to your Journal.

As for the brake pads:
I got my Hawk HP+ pads today but I probably wont get a chance to install them as I'm going on vacation for a week starting Saturday. I will have them installed before my next auto-x session on the 25th so I'll let you know how they perform.
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Old 04-17-2009, 01:05 AM   #3 (permalink)
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great start ! i think i'll steal your idea about the crush washers and oil analysis service ! also, you may want to get a trickle charger for when you change out your battery... if i didn't already have one, I'd get the new kind that plugs into cigarette lighter socket
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Old 04-17-2009, 01:38 AM   #4 (permalink)
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great start ! i think i'll steal your idea about the crush washers and oil analysis service ! also, you may want to get a trickle charger for when you change out your battery... if i didn't already have one, I'd get the new kind that plugs into cigarette lighter socket
Steal anything you like, just don't steal my car I'm stealing lots of stuff from your posts (and everyone else's). This car is staying relatively comfy and pretty though (it's not a track car, and I plan to make road trips and go out to dinner in it and such) so it won't get the extreme weight reduction treatment like yours is.

BTW, both of our lighter sockets are disconnected when the key is off, so we can't trickle through them.
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Old 04-18-2009, 01:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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This is going to be a nice one to keep track of. Thanks wstar for the detailed updates!
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Old 04-19-2009, 01:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Just got done installing the underdrive pulley from Stillen. Crankshaft bolt was a bitch to get loose, but it seems that's always the case on every car.

Service manual references a tool to hold the starter gear teeth in place while you're loosening and tightening the crankshaft bolt (see Svc Manual, Section EM, top of pg 53), whereas Stillen's instructions go with the standard "remove starter and use a prybar on the teeth there". With two people on a lift, I think the Stillen thing would've worked better, but alone crawling under the car trying to work both ends of things, I really wish I had that stupid little tool. It's basically just a triangular piece of metal with two bolt-holes, I imagine it can be ordered cheap from Nissan, or just fabbed with a grinder and a piece of steel. Just FYI for anyone else doing a self-install on this, it might be worth it to look into that.

Driving impressions:

Regarding the now-slowed accessory pulleys: I didn't notice anything different really with the steering or the AC, at least on a short night drive. The volt gauge moves a bit more, especially idling after startup (flicking the throttle moves it up a bit), so you can kinda tell the change in the alternator, but it's still staying over the 14 mark, I don't think it's going to be an issue.

I wasn't expecting to feel much difference driving, given that pulleys aren't generally a big power gain. However, my butt dyno was pleasantly surprised at the results of this mod. We'll have to see on a real dyno later if there are any actual HP gains, but I'm guessing at least a small bump there. What I really noticed though is that the car is just more responsive to throttle input now. Shifts (7AT in my car, remember) are a bit snappier, as the rpm changes (up and down) for shifts are even faster than they were before. You can really feel the difference when you sit around 4k in a given gear and ride the throttle close to even, alternating between accel and engine braking. The transition between those two states is faster and more responsive. Overall I'm really impressed with the change in the car's character from such a simple mod. I don't know what else to say besides re-iterating "more responsive" again

No pics of the car, it's not like a pulley is that exciting looking anyways, but here's a couple of install-related pics.

The pullers I had in my garage were all too long and bulky for the tiny cramped space you're working with on our crank pulley. I went by O'Reilly (generic auto parts place, like AutoZone, etc) and picked up one that worked well enough. It's a tiny cheap "gear puller" that happens to be small enough. I couldn't quite get both legs through the pulley at the same time (it's really cramped), so I took a bit of length off of one of the feet with a dremel cutting wheel (less than 1/4" I think). This is what you're looking for if you want to try to find it at a local place (and you can see my edit to one of the feet too):



Also, the belt tensioner on our car is rather tense. I was using a cheapo 3/8" socket wrench to hold mine open during the belt re-install. It couldn't take the torque, so the square drive got twisted. Poor little wrench:

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Old 04-19-2009, 03:47 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Bumping for the update above, since apparently edits don't bump the thread as unread.
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Old 04-19-2009, 03:56 AM   #8 (permalink)
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dang, you have suped up your car in a every short amount of time!!!!

i'll probably check here since you are doing all the things i want to do. thanks for your journal!
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Old 04-19-2009, 06:48 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Got a good drive in today, 30 miles each way on the highway. Bright sunny day, air temp about 80 outside, but bright hot sun and no clouds. Traffic was light enough on a couple of sections to really open up on the highway a bit too. Even top-gear acceleration seems better than before with the new pulley in place, I'm kinda surprised. No problems with the underdriven AC fighting the heat today, it was blasting very cold air, even in the parking lot.

I didn't cruise at about 125 for a number of those miles, but I imagined it in my head for a while, and oil temps stayed fine. Even dropping down to 5th for a while at those speeds with the AC blasting, it can't quite break 240 on the oil temp gauge. I can get it hotter with extended high rpm driving at low speeds, but on the highway I think it really doesn't *need* an oil cooler. Oh, and damn this car really tracks around long highway curves at speed like a train on tracks
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Old 04-19-2009, 07:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the write-up on the pulley install! That's actually the next thing I'm doing now that I tackled the headers. +rep.
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Old 04-19-2009, 07:51 PM   #11 (permalink)
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very cool, we tried installing mine over the weekend but we couldnt get the pulley out because we couldnt get the pulley bolt out. Just kept turning everything with it....
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Old 04-19-2009, 08:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
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very cool, we tried installing mine over the weekend but we couldnt get the pulley out because we couldnt get the pulley bolt out. Just kept turning everything with it....
First off, if the engine is turning, then you don't have the starter wheel locked down. Pull the starter off and put a prybar in there against the teeth so that you can hold the engine in place by that while you break the bolt.

I feel your pain, and then some. Imagine me laying under the car on Rhino Ramps taking that bolt off solo, one arm on the prybar at the rear of the engine, one arm on the breaker bar up front. It can be done, just takes a bit of creativity and a lot of grunting. At one point my prybar slipped and the elbow of my other arm went crashing into the pavement when everything let loose, I've got a nice bruise and some torn-off skin from that one.

Even my impact wrench didn't move that bolt, although it might have if there was a straight shot with it. Having to use an extension and a universal to reach it kinda kills the direct impact effect.

The trick that finally broke the bolt (I think anyways, the break wasn't very crisp, but I had success right after with some really hard pulling by hand again) was to use a floor jack. I held the prybar in place on the rear while I jacked up a floor jack with the other hand against the shaft of my breaker bar.
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Old 04-19-2009, 08:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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The trick that finally broke the bolt ... was to use a floor jack...
Holy sh-t, that's determination ! saves you from getting one of these anyways
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Old 04-22-2009, 08:29 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I deleted my washer fluid just now. I'm going to take a look at the TB coolant thing, but I may need to just button it up and make a parts run for that first.

Anyways, two other incidental things while I have the car in pieces. One, for those who were wondering about the closed-off ducts in the fangs of the front bumper, here's a pic from inside the bumper when the bumper is off the car:



Also, I had started the car up for a few minutes on the ramps and then shut it back down, and I started inspecting the exhaust. Turns out the big center flange (near the crossmember we had clearance issues with) has a bad gasket. The condensation in the exhaust system was leaking out from the bottom of the flange, that's how I noticed. When I went back and felt it cold, you can tell there's a chunk missing from the bottom of the gasket's edge. Hopefully replacing this gasket will solve some of my rasp issue, but I'll need to find an appropriate replacement first.

It probably got torn up from having that flange loosened and retightened (and the general area beaten and heated) many times over the course of a week or so while I was getting the crossmember clearance thing sorted out. Makes me suspicious of the other gaskets forward of this too, as they were also loosened and re-tightened multiple times.
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Old 04-22-2009, 08:46 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Hey wstar,

So what do you figure those closed-off duct openings on the bumper are? I don't have my Z yet so I can only guess from pictures.
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