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Discussion Starter #1
how much max horsepower can i get out of a 79 280zx non turbo if i rebuild the engine and put alot of engine mods into it such as turbo chargers turbo exhaust system, and the works? or would it be better to try and find a 280zx TURBO engine and swap that with my non turbo?

now for the V8 question... i talked to one of my friends and he claims that if i do put a 350 chevy v8 into my Z then ill have to change everything from exhaust to suspension and everything else... he says thisll take alot of money and the v8 is expensive. i love my Z engine but i want it to be fast you know? so can the z engine live up to or come close to the v8? if so then how close? im looking to make a monster out of my Z :)

sorry in advance for so many questions... just curious :)
 

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yes, a non-turbo can boost to 30psi, a turbo can go way more... just need blue coloured booster cables and a big barometric chamber to drop ambient to -30psi.

(I am turning into TonyD)
 

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In a low milage 83 turbo automatic


less wear due to age and rev limiting transmission


hit the classifieds on this web site or ebay


they are always for sale
 

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Best place to find a good turbo engine is in a running 280zx. Then you know that its good.
Switch engines and sell or donate the 280zx.

Can get one from a junkyard, but then after all the work of putting it, it might be shot. Dont know unless you tear it apart on the stand.

-BlaZed
 

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You'll need to probably check junkyards or just buy a whole complete running 280xz turbo to do the swap. Personaly I would just buy a junker and rebuild it that way I know for sure that everything is ready to handle what ever I throw at it rather than worrying if the 200,000+ mile engine will survive. As for the non turbo you can get it ro run high 12's and 13's fully modded and with good driving skills but to be honest it would be cheaper in the end to go with a turbo to achieve the same time slips. If speed is really that important then turbo is probably the best way to go. Most stay with the non turbo when they want to be different or don't worry about hitting certain time slips. As for the V8 you will need a new engine, tranny, driveshaft, differential, beef up the suspension, beef up the frame, new motor mounts, etc. Again it would probably be cheaper to go with a turbo set up rather than the V8 set up. Also the option of going with a V8 in a datsun is a personal choice. I personaly think, like many other here, that dropping in a chevy or ford engine into the Z takes away from the Zness. I mean I still can appreciate a nicely done V8 Z but it's not something I would do. I'm more of a puriest when it comes to engine swaps. If you have a Nissan stick with Nissan, if you have a Ford stick with Ford. I guess thats the great thing about these old cars is that there are many options, many opinions, and if there wasn't things would get very boring. My best advice is to do all the research you can on all options that interest you, then make a plan for your car, price how much this project will cost, see if the cost meets your bank account, and finally once all checks out then start buying parts and modding. Best to start out with a plan before you go spending your money. Good luck
 

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Yeah, but you have to replace the efi (incl injectors) oil pan, exhaust manifold, re-plumb the intake, and get a different head to lower the compression. The turbo block is stronger though so its just better to go with the whole turbo engine.
Its possible, but only really viable if you have a good NA l28 and a whole turbo motor with a toasted block.

-BlaZed
 

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Discussion Starter #16
ive been researching for the past 2 hours now... all of my interest right now is into the turbo... i guess it would be kool to have the v8 chevy in there but now that i think about it... it wouldnt be a 280zx with it in... it would be a z-chevy... i dont think that would be nice so im sticking with the search for the turbo. if anyone has any information on anyone selling a turbo engine please e-mail me... my e-mail is [email protected]. my current non turbo is at 150,000+ miles so ive got time to find that turbo and rebuild it before the engine runs down... the only problem about rebuilding the nonturbo is that this is my only car and i have school.... i dont think i can take the engine out... work on it for about 3-4 hours afterschool and put it back in rdy to drive the next day for school... same thing with the whole restoration of the car. itll be really difficult to do so especially on the interior. any help is very much appreciated...
 

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you can buy a 400 HP chevy crate engine wit ha 1 year warranty for $4200. you do not have to do any suspension mods to run that engine either.

the r180 rearend will hold up to a point, a r200 rear will hold up alot better.

i have friends that are running over 600 HP in a small block chevy in their Z's with the LS1 engines and also the older LT1 engines, and just as many guys pushing that much with a iron block 350 with alum heads. i wouldnt run much over 400 due to twisting of the frame etc.

just depends on how fast you want to go.
 

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SlateFOx, For a V8 swap you do not need to upgrade your suspension. The V8 with cast heads is only about 300 lbs more than a L6. Use aluminum heads and the weight it almost the same.
The good thing about a V8 is that the weight distribution of the car is better. It's true you will need new exhaust and a new driveline.
Check out www.hybridz.org for real information about this type of swap and quit listening to your friends unless they have done this swap.
 

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The turbo-swap questions you're asking have been posed on this forum at least once a day for the entire four or five years I've been visiting. You can get day's worth of reading on every aspect of this subject by clicking on "search" at the top of the page and typing in "turbo swap".

Although it is a relatively common swap and can give you lots more power, this is not exactly a plug-and-play exercise that accomplish on a lunch break. It is a rather involved process to switch an NA car to even a stock turbo setup because the engine management system is completely different in the two cars. That means you need all the sensors, wiring and black box out of the turbo in addition to the motor. Plus Datsun saw fit to produce the turbo ZXs with a different, beefier Borg Warner 5-speed rather than the standard issue Nissan 5, and that takes a different driveshaft. The turbos also had different rear end gearing than that NA's, etc. etc.

If your '79 is a tired beater with a shot interior, it might make more sense for you to just buy a turbo car (production years '81-'83) and sell the '79. You haven't mentioned what area of the country you're in, or which eBay you looked in, but I found two turbo ZXs there in about five minutes. And three or four other turbo cars in another five:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=2494323848&category=6187

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=2494470678&category=6187

http://www.craigslist.org/pen/car/45060551.html

http://www.craigslist.org/eby/car/44826966.html

http://www.craigslist.org/eby/car/44526538.html

http://www.cars-new-used.com/view.jsp?id=152151

http://www.cars-new-used.com/view.jsp?id=613200
 
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