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Turbo into NA


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This may be the wrong forum in which to ask this question, and if so, I apologize. But there seems to be so many knowledgeable contributers here and I'm not sure where else to turn. My question: I recently purchased a 1991 300ZX NA 2+2 with automatic(from these classifieds!) with engine damage (the timing belt broke on the previous owner @ 130K miles). Would I be better off repairing this engine (valves/heads only vs. complete overhaul), replacing it with a used Japanese motor (is that JDM?), or could I swap in a twin turbo engine. If I could swap in a TT, what else would have to be swapped or modified?

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I'm really not sure how much help you'll get here since just about everyone here is more focused on the 69-78 Z cars and not much later. I personally think its possible to put in a TT motor, but that could involve a lot of rewiring. Repairing the damaged motor (if its really just heads and vavles) would be the easiset thing to do I think.

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You can indeed swap in a vg30dett into an NA car. There was a great write up of this procedure in a recent edition of Nissan Sport magazine.

My suggestions are this:

Find the Nissan Sport website and get a subscription (and back issues), and head over to twinturbo.net or z32.com

Both websites cater to your model of Z car, and will be a wealth of information for you.

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I've never owned a Z32 but I did own a 1994 Infiniti J30. Same VG30DE engine, basically. I don't know if I'd put a TT in an NA automatic trans car. If the timimg belt broke, there shouldn't be any other damage. Due to the engine's design, you won't get the 'valve hitting the piston' problem associated with timing belt breakage in earlier engines. I would suggest reparing the engine. At 130K miles, I would do what they refer to the 100K mile service on the engine. That includes the water pump, seals in the front of the engine and heads, tensioners, belts, basically everything that you can get to with the front cover off as well as a tune up. It costs about $1200-$1500 at a shop. Much more if you take it to Nissan. But much less that the proposed TT swap. Find a shop that knows those engines. You'll be happier with the car in the long run. If you really want a TT Z32 buy one. There's more to that car than just the engine.

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Thanks everyone for your input. I went to the suggested sites, which were helpful. I decided to stick with NA. Whether to rebuild current engine partially or completely or stick in JDM is still under consideration.

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