Why Did I Build A Car

With and engine thats just as notorious for ticking HLA’s as 4Gs?

Modified EFI loom passes the test.

Welcome to 1980’s patriarchy society, where woman need a car designed just for them. Seriously Nissan.

I Love It When A Plan Comes Together








2.5″ from the turbo back, two resonators, two 02 sensor mounts for narrow and widebands, Kakimoto N1 barrel.



Binned the factory hangers;


Along with the blue silicone reducers.


Turbo beanie.


Cured cancer.



40mm lower BC springs, pulled guards and increased negative camber completes the front suspension set up.












Chatting with a childhood friend “Big Mike.” He’s one of the people I know now that I’ve known for the longest time, of all the people I know in my life. It was his twenty-fifth birthday. He says, “that’s a quarter of a century.” He’s right about that. He says it plainly, “I turned twenty-five today.”

I tell him happy birthday. I remember the awkward moment when I turned a quarter of a century old, but I feel neither bad nor good about it. Neither a man or a mouse. At the end of the day, we, as people, feel generally neither good nor bad about things. Everything ends at zero on the number-line. It doesn’t depress me, nor does it make me feel especially indifferent, that when the smoke clears I’ll be left blissfully indifferent. In fact, it evokes a feeling rather closer to joy than anything unjoyous.

That is, as long as I get this thing to OS Nationals 2014.


IMG_20130406_192745_zps074f7614 IMG_20130406_192815_zpsf8fd3781


A friend who is an auto electrician made a 4 hour round trip last weekend to help sort the battery in the boot conversion. We used 0 gauge cable that I pulled out of a 3 series Beemer from pick-a-part for $6 where they come standard with the battery in the boot. The full conversion has a 500 amp master switch in the center console, properly crimped terminals, shielding for its full length, double heat shrunk, runs through the cabin in the factory cable guides so it isn’t noticeable under the carpet and then through the inner guards for the wire tuck.

Next stop is Racefab for the exhaust.

Milano Updates






Straight off the bat they fit alright. The fronts will be easy, once the guards are pulled it’ll be dropped 10mm more. The rears will need more camber to sit nicely along with a decent guard pull. I have rear camber plates but the the strut tops will need to be redrilled to suit them first. If I’m going to do the whole slammed thing with this car then might as well go all out.


There are a few things on the car that were temporary to get it running, namely the wiring and cooling. Now that I know it runs they can be tided up. The EFI loom has been removed from the car to be stripped back to the bare essentials. A spare CA18 loom was used so any wires that required lengthening could be done so using the factory colours, and in regards to the AFM the factory shielding which is very heavy duty. The majority of the loom runs below the intake manifold so is hidden, and the injector dropping resistor, ignitor, fuses, and ground wires now route into the cabin through the AC grommet. The entire AC loom has been removed and the main body loom now runs along inside the guards and front bumper support so it is completely outside of the engine bay. The main power wires and alternator wiring / relay box will be done by an auto electrical when the battery is moved to the boot.





As for the cooling, there are no more 20+ year old rubber hoses left in this thing.









I Love Yahoo Auctions Japan

It is a goldmine for obsolete electronics.

HKS IPM – Displays injector duty cycle


HKS VPC – Converts airflow to speed density




Also acquired a CA18DET bottom end for something to put the rebuilt four port head on and thus give a me complete spare engine.



Period Correct

The growing collection of 1980’s and 1990’s electronics for the Pulsar:


HKS Turbo Timer IV



Maxon Radar Detector

Bee*R Limiter


And the piece de resistance, a dash mountable Sony Car Discman. Just need a 1 button AFC or 5 button SAFC to complete the set. Will probably need to source it off Yahoo jp as they are quite hard to come by now.


Everything will be completely functional, except the radar detector – Ka band hadn’t been invented in 1985. Also the Discman only seems to play sweet sweet 80′s syth pop.


Car starts its workshop tour of Chch 7 January 2013.

Dial M for (Valve) Murder

The first start for the N13 was a no show. Spark yes. Compression yes. Fuel yes, wait, oh um, no. It wasn’t a terribly difficult diagnosis what with having already replaced or refurbished everything bar the pump in the fuel system; the pump is knackered. With it been a rubbish RB20DET one I’ll just chuck a Whinebro in but for now I can’t be bothered dropping the tank in the middle of a cold & damp winter, I wanted something I could tinker away with in the warmth and comfort of the lounge. So inspired by Jafros recent series of videos I’m doing a cylinder head rebuild.

This is the dummy for the project; the holy grail among CA18DET heads – the 4 port. This will be a good upgrade on the existing 8 port currently in the N13 if it gives me trouble and good practice for the eventual 4G63 build.

I got this cheap from the NZDatsun Admin a while back because he was going FJ20 plus he believed it had some bent valves. He was right. With the cams out the exhaust valves in cylinder 1 were still wide open. I’ve got spares galore anyway so this wouldn’t be a problem.

First step after stripping it bare was a good clean. The seats are quite badly pitted but hydro tested okay, they should be savageable.

Exhaust valve before and after.

Intake before and after.

Onto the meat of the project, lapping the valve seats. The next best thing to a engine coffee table is a engine on a coffee table. I did a couple each night after work while watching QI, I need to do my car related work like this more often. To combat the pitting I went with the 2 stage grinding paste, first course then fine and they came out great.

Valve stem seals, out with the old and in with the new.

Reinstalling the valve springs keepers. This was initially a right test of patience thanks to the valley design of the head giving very little room to work with, but after the first few I got the hang of it and they weren’t too bad. Also meant I got to buy a new tool. I like new tools.

The CA HLA’s suffer the same issues as the 1st gen 4G’s in that the oil inlet is larger than the outlet. This results in all sludge and trash been permanently trapped in the check valve. As the CA18 life span wasn’t long enough for Nissan to redesign them like Mitsubishi did the only way to clean them is via complete disassembly.

A popular trick among CA18DET builders is to run CA16DE cams due to the slighter greater lift and duration. People pay good money for these but fortunately I have a set sitting unused in a spare head. In they go then.

One 4 port head ready for service sir. I now possess the best CA18DET head that is possible from factory parts, and aside from the new cam and valve guide seals it cost nothing to build. As Jafro would say, “I’m a big fan of that.”

So Close

Just kidding this thing will never drive.


While I was finishing off the underseal we had the first shake in months (great timing) and also discovered that contrary to the manual that there isn’t a fuel tank drain bolt. The 4 year old stale fuel in there has to come out one way or the other, guess I’m off to buy a length of clear tubing and some breath mints. Urgh.