drive ability issue with '83 Turbo 280ZX 5-spd - Nissan : Datsun ZCar forum :Nissan Z Forum: 240Z to 370Z
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2019, 05:55 PM Thread Starter
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drive ability issue with '83 Turbo 280ZX 5-spd

Newbie here, 1st post... so I'll try to be as proficient with the problem as possible.... I am experiencing a slight idle surge from 600-900 rpm's at cold idle, and upon slight acceleration, the engine stumbles and will backfire seemingly thru the intake, and not so much thru the exhaust. After 3-4 min's of idling, or driving, the engine stumbles significantly more and won't accelerate, then within approx. 1 min. will cut off and not crank again until it cools down for at least a couple hours... The car has 81k miles and I purchased it from the original owner who let the car sit for about 16 years... I have replaced the battery, coil, fuel pump, fuel filter, distributor cap, rotor, new ngk spark plugs gapped at .0040, new 10mm accel plug wires with the correct placement firing order. I dropped the fuel tank and cleaned it thoroughly including the fuel lines also. I put 10 gals. 93 octane ethanol free fuel in it. I also upgraded the cluth, pressure plate, throwout and pilot bearing, including complete new brake system (lines, master cyl. (was leaking), new calipers, rotors, and raybestos ceramic pads all around.
I feel like it's an electrical issue, thankful it's not intermittent, but symptomatic from initial startup.
I recently removed the mass air meter and cleaned the blade terminals and applied dielectric grease. I then opened the box to find exceptionally clean internals. I noticed it (does not) have an idle-adjustment screw on the AFM near the inlet...Also the wire connector has 5 blade connectors, (not 7) and has an analog dash, (not digital)... I very carefully cleaned the nipple that protrudes inside the flapper door. which was, what I thought, unusually clean and virtually carbon / soot free. I then carefully adjusted the carbon track and re-positioned it no more than a thousandth or two of an inch, making sure the carbon track didn't intersect with the old grooves, then re-tightened the 3 screws holding the board stable. Finally I reinstalled the AFM cover and properly sealed it... After cranking the car again, same problem, with no improvement. I'm the type to test things before replacing and not sure where the voltage parameters (range / ratio's?) should be at say 75 degrees (room temp), or which of the 5 blade terminals should be checked or in what order? Before I send off the MAF meter off to be rebuilt, I want to eliminate any issue with other components...Not sure if I should replace the $40 cylinder head temp. sensor? and I've been suggested that the ECM may have a bad temp. capacitor internally.... Thanks in advance, and ANY help would be greatly appreciated.

Last edited by 83Turbo280ZX; 03-11-2019 at 06:08 PM. Reason: misspelling
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2019, 08:18 PM
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Hard for me to imagine a car that has sat that long would not have plugged or partially plugged injectors. I would think about replacing them or at least having those ultrasonically cleaned. But before you do that, try this: remove and refresh EVERY wire under the hood and at the ECU (or ECCS in your case). In other words, one at a time, unclip every connector from every sensor, fuel injector, fusible links and everything else - including the battery terminals and all ground wires. If you can get at one side or the other, clean them. If you can slightly recrimp with needlenose, do that. For grounds, clean the wire end and where it attaches with steel wool or a wire brush. If you can't get at the terminals, plug and unplug the connector like 10 times to freshen up the contact surfaces. Same with the ECCS - connect and unconnect those big multi-wire plugs a half dozen times at least. These cars didn't use the most expensive connectors and the contacts can corrode over time. I've had five running Z cars (and a lot more DOA ones), I've done this with all of them and every one ran better after I did it.

Other than that, my experience is that even after you clean everything up, cars that have sat for a long time sometimes need some miles on them to 'loosen up.' I dont' know why, but you put 100 miles on a car that idles uneven when restarted after a long sit, and it will smooth out a lot.

Let us know if this helps or not, or if you found another cause for the problem
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-11-2019, 08:19 PM
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One other suggestion: If your battery connectors are old and broken and corroded, replace the battery cables with new ones, the thickest you can find.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-13-2019, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input... this w/end I'll start with the removal and cleaning of the wire connectors and work my way thru the wiring and ECCS. Hoping I can gain some progress and report some improvement next post... I'm open for any further suggestions to smooth the idle and help diagnose the driveability issue
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-21-2019, 10:32 PM
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Have you checked to see if you have spark?Those turbo cars where bad about ignition modules in distributor going bad.I would always ditch them for a 300zx or sentra module(just make sure you use your original trigger wheel).
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-22-2019, 04:16 PM
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have you read the FSM on the fuel injection? Have you looked at the spark plugs for clue on fuel ratio? why do you feel its an ignition issue?
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-23-2019, 12:31 AM
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If your referring to me Dave, the car shutting off and not starting for a couple hours is dead on what I would deal with at least twice a week until I switched to 84 300zx turbo fuel injection.still had issues with ignition modules but always carried a spare in glove box took 10 minutes to change out.Now I will tell you I did run a 81 turbo crank angle sensor for a couple of years and never had any issues with it.Once I got rid of that airflow meter I never had many issues except for the ignition module.I cant even imagine trying to find ignition modules now,I cant even remember that last time I seen a old sentra or 300zx in the salvage yard.By the way if you do find out it is the ignition module I believe I still have my old turbo distributor in the garage somewhere.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-23-2019, 03:08 AM
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Don't know the construction of the MAF "blades", but is insulating dielectric grease good where variable signals are sent to the ECU vs. "on-off" signals? Just askin'.

zippityzda
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-23-2019, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alrighty View Post
If your referring to me Dave, the car shutting off and not starting for a couple hours is dead on what I would deal with at least twice a week until I switched to 84 300zx turbo fuel injection.still had issues with ignition modules but always carried a spare in glove box took 10 minutes to change out.Now I will tell you I did run a 81 turbo crank angle sensor for a couple of years and never had any issues with it.Once I got rid of that airflow meter I never had many issues except for the ignition module.I cant even imagine trying to find ignition modules now,I cant even remember that last time I seen a old sentra or 300zx in the salvage yard.By the way if you do find out it is the ignition module I believe I still have my old turbo distributor in the garage somewhere.
I was wondering why the OP was thinking an electrical issue, I read that as spark issues (my mistake). I always put in a fresh set of plugs and drive it and then read them any time I have drivability issues. I would start with the basic, get a plug reading, determine if the mix looks good based on that, then start working the issue. If the mix looks good based on plugs look into ignition, if the mix is wrong go to the FSM and work the various systems in the fuel supply and EFI.

Last edited by Dave M; 03-23-2019 at 09:49 AM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-26-2019, 01:23 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alrighty View Post
Have you checked to see if you have spark?Those turbo cars where bad about ignition modules in distributor going bad.I would always ditch them for a 300zx or sentra module(just make sure you use your original trigger wheel).
yep, it has spark, and runs for approx 4-5 mins with a little stumble... after it gets warm, the engine misfires and idle characteristics fluctuates then shuts off.... it will not fire back up and run again for about 2 hours (cools off) I just replaced the cy. head temp sensor, and yes, used dielectric grease on the connectors.... still experiencing same problem
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