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Thread: Time Required for Engine Work

  1. #1
    Registered User Threehz's Avatar
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    Default Time Required for Engine Work

    I'm thinking about digging into my engine, but I will be moving soon and don't want to get into a sticky situation. Can anyone chime in on the time it takes to do the jobs listed below? I know times vary significantly between people and engine, but any estimates are appreciated.

    Engine is out of car on a stand with exhaust and intake manifolds removed. I want to know how long it may take to 1. remove the head and check it and the pistons/rings 2. re-ring the pistons 3. rebuild the head 4. refresh timing components 5. full rebuild.

    Thank you!
    Different Strokes for Different Folks
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    It totally depends on your machine shop. The rest of the work you would likely self perform can be done in a long day or two.
    Charles

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    I've never done any of these. But here's a few comments for discussion.

    1. remove the head and check it and the pistons/rings - removing the head and checking its parts for wear should be pretty easy. You can check the cylinder bores for wear, at least the ones that have the pistons down, but you can't tell much about the rings and pistons with just the head off. This is assuming that you plan to do only the head and have locked the tensioner in place, so can't spin the crankshaft.

    2. re-ring the pistons - requires removing the oil pan and rod end caps to get the pistons out. But, ideally, the cylinders would be honed, which, ideally, means the crankshaft is out also to make room and keep things clean. People do replace just rings, but it's a halfway job.


    3. rebuild the head - depends on how worn things are. Valve seats, valve guides, valve seals.

    4. refresh timing components - easy, it's all bolt-on stuff.

    5. full rebuild - what patcon said, but from what I've seen on the various forums, it's hard to find a shop that really knows what they're doing. Many seem to make mistakes on shaving the head, installing the cam and rockers, keeping parts in order, etc. Plus the fact that aftermaket parts don't seem to last very long.


    Just some thoughts, open to criticism. I keep seeing threads from people who seem to know what's needed but can't find a shop to get the work done right. "New" engines or assemblies destroying themselves in relatively few miles.
    Last edited by Zed Head; 10-22-2014 at 02:39 PM. Reason: Stupid colors!
    1976 280Z, with some minor modifications

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    Digging into it for a known problem or just thinking refresh?
    What's your experience? If your asking how long it takes to remove the head then I would assume you have little Z experience
    Like Zed said- if you run into anymore then a refresh it will take time to find an experienced L machinist. If it's just bearings and rings and crank polish - it shouldn't take long.
    Usually it's the head that will cost the most time and money.
    Steve
    71 240z,bw-5sp 2.4-40 over,balanced,e-88,big valves,ported&polished, stage2,header, triple Mikuni's 40's
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    I have struggled in my area to find a good machine shop. Many of them are setup like production body shops and don't want to mess with vintage heads. I have even had a chevy 350 block sit in a machine shop for weeks waiting to get my turn. Have gotten frustrated and gone someplace else. So some of my comment is based on whether you can find a competent machine shop and get a decent turnaround. Our engines are really not that hard to machine. The heads can be harder to do because the geometry and wear patterns need to be right. For good head work I would probably look to one of the reputable builders since that is where the power is, but be sure and bring your wallet.
    Charles

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    Also, you never know what you're going to find once you crack open the engine. Look at some of the grim and sludge that I found in my 1972 240z (one owner car w/ 104k miles)...bigger mess = more time & more $$

    Dave's 1972 Datsun 240z: Engine Rebuild: Part 2: Engine Tear Down

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    Dave
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    Registered User siteunseen's Avatar
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    I got so engulfed in my first rebuild I can't imagine squeezing in a move. It's all I thought about until I cranked it.
    1972 240Z #918 New Sight Orange
    1977 280Z #305 Light Blue Metallic
    1972 240Z #110 Persimmons Red

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    Torch Wielding Villager gogriz91's Avatar
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    Patcon, if you're willing to make a drive down I-85 Not on Main Street Garage in Sugar Hill GA does a lot of L-series heads. A reputable Z builder is a cross the parking lot from them and takes all his head/machine work there.
    Address: 720 N Price Rd, Sugar Hill, GA 30518
    Phone 770 932-9311
    Last edited by gogriz91; 10-24-2014 at 04:51 AM.
    '73 HLS30 129806 ; L-28, street cam, SUs, 5-speed, Koni's, Suspension techniques springs, swaybars, 3.90 R200 LSD

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    Thank you all for the good advice. One of my big fears is opening it up and finding a mess. This isn't a problem in the long-run, but I don't want to have to move with the engine half torn down. Even if I were to open it up and things looked good, I would still want to do some work while I'm there.

    Anyhow, choosing to clean her up and throw her back in, and see what she thinks after an 11-year nap. Worst case I pull the engine and rebuild post-move.
    Different Strokes for Different Folks
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    Quote Originally Posted by gogriz91 View Post
    Patcon, if you're willing to make a drive down I-85 Not on Main Street Garage in Sugar Hill GA does a lot of L-series heads. A reputable Z builder is a cross the parking lot from them and takes all his head/machine work there.
    Address: 720 N Price Rd, Sugar Hill, GA 30518
    Phone 770 932-9311
    I appreciate that info. I'm about an hour west of Cartersville and used to go to Road Atlanta some before they built Barber's in Leeds. I had been thinking of trying Eddie Raditz's shop, it's over in that area also. Thanks again.
    1972 240Z #918 New Sight Orange
    1977 280Z #305 Light Blue Metallic
    1972 240Z #110 Persimmons Red

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    Registered User siteunseen's Avatar
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    If you haven't done this before I'm here to tell you Tom Monroe's book "How to Rebuild Nissan/Datsun L motors" is a must. I just got done finishing disassembly of a motor I bought a couple of months ago, when I tried getting the main bearing caps off I had a hell of a time until I remembered his tips. Use the 2 bolts as a handle to wiggle them and pull them out, use a front cover bolt on the center and rear main to pry them out with a 2x4 and a crowbar. All kinds of helpful information for $20.

    It's only $13.50 now, How to Rebuild Your Nissan/Datsun OHC Engine: Covers L-Series Engines 4-Cylinder 1968-1978, 6-Cylinder 1970-1984: Tom Monroe: 9781931128032: Amazon.com: Books
    1972 240Z #918 New Sight Orange
    1977 280Z #305 Light Blue Metallic
    1972 240Z #110 Persimmons Red

  12. #12
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    Thanks for the lead on the machine shop. I like to drive so a couple hours or so is just a Sunday drive.
    Charles

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