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moozieman

Engine Building?

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I really want a project car. But im debating what will run it. Do I leave the stock L24 engine? Maybe bore out the cylinders? Do a complete swap? If i swap it, what's a good cheap engine to use? I dont really know where to start with engine builds.

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I would start with money and convenience on engine builds.  If you live down the street from a shop that knows how to work on these old engines, and has a machine shop with a guy that knows what he's doing, for a good rate, you're probably in good shape.  Most of us these days have trouble finding anybody who knows much about them and won't charge a ton for simple operations.  I had problems finding somebody that would turn a flywheel for a reasonable cost.

Edited by Zed Head

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Just now, Zed Head said:

I would start with money and convenience on engine builds.  If you live down the street from a shop that knows how to work on these old engines, and has a machine shop with guy that knows what he's doing, for a good rate, you're probably in good shape.  Most of us these days have trouble finding anybody who knows much about them and charge much money for simple operations.  I had problems finding somebody that would turn a flywheel for a reasonable cost.

Yeah I know plenty of people. I'm just not really sure where to start as far as what I want to do.

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If you’re unfamiliar with engines then you should probably just keep the l24 (or l28, whatever engine it comes with) to get your foot in the door with how they work and what it takes to keep them running well. The L engines aren’t boring, especially if you push the car the way it was designed. 

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My experiences with the straight 6 L motors, the 2.8 is easier and cheaper to rebuild.  A 2.4 will be harder to get parts for and you'll pay higher prices.  My $.02 after building both within a couple of years of each other.

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I hesitate to use the word cheap maybe you’re looking for the word economical or best bang for your buck I don’t know. I did some research on this and other than L series engine it’s going to cost you a lot more money due to modifications required. My humble opinion a good L 28 would probably be great for that car

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Ain't nothing wrong with an L28 from a 280Z. In fact we stopped building our race engines using ZX blocks. Walls thickness was the issue. more meat in a 280 block or at least on the three so far in comparison to the ZX ones.

Either are fine for a hot street engine and of course going turbo with the F54 block is a no brainer. Low compression as opposed to what we build (13.5:1) NA.

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I just bought a running 82 ZX engine to put in my car. ($400) I might put an N47 or N42 head on to boost the CR but not sure. I have the original engine but wanted to build the ZX motor while my car is in storage for the next 6 months. If your thinking RB...think $$. The engines alone run $2,500+. The engine mount mod brackets are $499 where I looked. Then there are many more things to make the engine a smooth install so unless you have 5k+ laying in a box asking to be spent then go with an L28


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Forgot to add. I ordered all the parts to rebuild this engine. Total cost was $738. That’s For everything including all stainless bolt kit and new valves, timing chain kit seals, gaskets, oil pump, water pump, freeze plugs, rings (not pistons) , bearings, thermostat housing, PVC and a few other small items.

Local machine shop doing the following: Block Hot Tank - $50

Head Clean and Inspect -$45

Hone Cylinders -$45

 

So it’s a $1,000 plus the engine cost

$1,400 total.

I’m expecting at least $300-400 in “oh by the way” issues.

$1800 is what this endeavor will cost me. I think that pretty good. Don’t think you can do it for much less.

 

 

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After contemplating the various options for replacement engines, I decided very early on I wanted to maintain the "look" of the stock engine and mod it in ways to get a little better performance and sound. In the end, I found a used stroker motor for the car that saved me thousands in a build, along with giving me the look I was seeking in the engine bay. 

RB's are great to drive and they have a big "wow" factor too. But they are also a lot more work to install, support, upgrade... and engine management becomes an issue as well. $$$$$

Swapping in a V8 gives you awesome torque and straightline performance, but steals the spirit of the car... and $$$$ again, mostly for the supporting mods.

If a stroker is not available for a decent price, the next best thing is a clean L28 with your choice of FI or carbs. Lots of fun, great to look at and smiles for miles!

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