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Its about time I made a proper build thread, its always nice to get peoples feedback and advice when playing around with these things.

As soon as I was getting near my opens up here in Queensland, I was starting to itch for a turbo car (i went through to early for the new rules where P platers couldn't own moderately powered turbos, but I was too late by 3 months to have open slather) and after a while I got myself a nice R32 gts-t. It provided me with some nice trouble free motoring for 3 years out of uni and into the workforce however after a while I wanted more. At the time I figured I could either do the GTR treatment (guards/bonnet/bar etc) to it but for a similar price I could upgrade to an actual GTR. So, at the end of 2013, this:


Became this. Magic Transition!:



I probably rushed into buying it too quickly, and in hindsight I probably should have kept looking for a better car, but more to come on that later...
It was certainly more powerful than the gts-t, (biggest smile on my face ever accelerating when i turned onto the highway picking it up) and the seats made it feel much more sporty (i'd have to say, bang for buck best mod you can do to a gts-t would be gtr seats) but it didn't have the handling of low end that the gts-t did. Part of that was the turbo's.. here's a quick list of the interesting points of the car when i got it:

Tomei ARMS turbos with tomei dumps/turbo back exhaust

TE37's, 17x9

HKS coilivers

Greddy EBC

Nistune ECU

mines 320kmph speedo

nismo front bar

water lines behind the block replaced

I've deduced that the previous previous owner flogged the shit out of the car with the stock turbos until a point which they decided to stop working in a reasonable fashion at which point he flogged off the car to the previous owner, who decided to replace them with the Tomei items. Without supporing mods etc the car was making pretty average power, no better than stock.

So, cue acquisition Z32 AFM's, 850cc injectors and a Walbro 400lph fuel pump and booking in a tune at EFI.

After a struggle I got the Z32's on using an Ebay intake adaptor kit (due to the bigger body size of these AFM's), in hindsight i'd probably have been better off buying Genuine Nismo items that would have bolted right on, but i got a good deal on the Z32's so it wasn't to bad. Turns out the pump I had wasn't suitable for E85, so i had Sean supply and install one in the morning, and it was on the dyno in the afternoon. Cue...



Blown intercooler hose that night.


new hose clamps


Anyway, after a few more months I noticed I had a leak between the afm and the turbo (thanks, dodgy china intake kit!), fixing it caused the tune to be thrown off, so I thought... might as well get it tuned on E85. the car really needed it, full boost was extremely late, car really wasn't great to drive despite having a bit of power and would bring itself back out of the power band on gear changes.

So, this happened. New cooler on the recommendation of Sean, Made 398hp on E85 but valve float struck though. Was good enough for then, picked up something like 800rpm of response on the turbos so i was pretty happy


A few other little projects over the next few months. Undertray:


Posing with a non nissan leopard




Local lookout with my dad




Anyway, around the end of the year I noticed that there was a small drop of fluid appearing just in front of the rear drivers side tyre. Closer inspection showed the subframe bushing was shot. Inspired by Cadmoon doing a similar job with his car, I set about doing a full entire suspension refresh, minus shocks. All new ball joins, adjustable upper arms, new bushes throughout. After a lot of help from knowledgeable friends and people here I accumulated the parts and set out doing the changeover over a Christmas break.



As it turned out, the entire front right subframe bush crush tube had completely separated from the outer (no danger of falling out, but its not really doing much bushing), a few days of buggering around and they were out. Got some help from a friend who kindly did the wheel bearings and ball joints for me.




Back together. There's a fronts photo but its even worse.



After this, a good alignment are the car was driving pretty dam amazingly. Bit of road noise and you can feel the bumps more but you it feels so much more planted than it ever did.

Note you can see from the photos the sils aren't in great condition, particularly in the rear right. That's one of the reasons I probably should have passed on the car, as I mentioned at the beginning. However as many are I was simply to excited and looking to much at other things to ever actually check them when I got the car. Its something I will need to address soon, though as yet I haven't fixed them.

After this I enjoyed a good start to 2015, working back in Brisbane on a nice Monday to Friday gig instead of site work, i got to use the car quite a bit on week nights and weekends. Lot of cruises, few happylaps sessions (non 100% rate cruise sessions at the track basically) and went to the skidpan in Gympie for a day. However, after this I started to have a few issues. AWD pump decided the pressure sensor should now be a vent point and spilt fluild all over the diff. Pulled the diff out and got it refreshed while I put in a new unit however it failed to bleed properly or had some other issue and started spilling fluid out again. Refreshed diff was nice though. Spent most of the time running the car in RWD from then on while waiting for a fix.


I had other issues crop up aswell. The tune on the car started using more fuel, averaging 15L/100 on E85 everywhere, even on the highway. I developed some sort of fuel pump issue, causing the rather large drama's from fuel starvation, and I also developed an intermittent miss. Ontop of that, some kind of oil leak in the turbo side of the engine bay started up.

New fuel pump solved one issue, though what was left in the tank was distrubing. Oil leak turned out to be blowby oil stuck in the vertical part of the rear turbo intake pipe that was a slightly oversized diameter causing a spot for it to pool, and and slowly leaking past the hose clamp onto the dump of the front turbo. It caused some rather wild smoke though! Chucked a dodgy catchcan in to try rectify that one.

The miss issue came and went, annoyingly. Plugs would get rid of it for a while, so I managed to get a track day out at QR in. I managed 61.8 on sprint, which was pretty respectable I thought, though I needed more grunt to get past the AMG in the group who was lapping 2s slower but always going out at the front. in the second last session I had brakes decide to go foot to the floor, so I called it a day. I had some Brembo's I was in the process of putting on, so that would easily resolve that.

The miss and fuel usage issues didn't abate, so after a lot of researching and pondering future goals, (the tomei turbos were becoming very annoying by now) I decided on going down the haltech route for the ECU. I was also planning a road trip to Phillip Island with some friends so needed the ability to run 98 when required, but didn't want to loose the response that E85 gave the car with the laggy turbos. It seemed like a nice package, did all I needed, reasonable price, though if I were doing it again now I would probably go down the Link path.

Anyway, come July, before the ECU is going in, and i'm out scouting the charity cruise route for 2015 with da prez, and on the way back home suddenly he's flashing his lights and Calling me. Wonder what's wrong with, I thought. Cue "TURN OFF YOU CAR" being yelled out... not good. Turns out a water line under the plenum (water to oil heat exchange returnto be precise) had just decided to randomly go while just driving back home. Cue plenum out.
I seriously considered doing an engine out, and doing the oil pump, sump mods, front diff HG and valve springs and headstuds, and new turbos instead, it did seem to offer a slightly better effort to reward ratio, but in the ended up pulling the plenum in the bay and doing a hose refresh. Not a fun job. Also did a water to oil heat exchanger removal and put in an oil filter relocation+thermostat controlled oil cooler.

Back together it went, the haltech went in and i got a flex tune done on it a few weeks before going to Melbourne.

Unfortunately the miss came back in short order, as intermittent as usual, and I noticed that a bit of coolant had gone missing post tune... but it went away with 98.

E85 and petrol tunes


Also did the brembos and MCA purples (X-R series) as i'd need both for Phillip island and a semi comfortable drive down. Turns out the HKS coilovers had just busted a seal in the rear right, so that was lucky.



Anyway, drove down in late October to do a session at PI, winton, the melbourne cup and swing by wakefield on the trip home.


As it turns out it was an eventful trip. 200k's north of Melbourne the car started to get temp spikes, after pulling over and waiting for it to cool enough found the radiator was missing a few liters of water. So I had a leak somewhere. Filled it back up and had a nervous rest of the trip to PI but made it. Decided to take it on the track anyway and keep a close eye on the temps. It was a slow leak so should have been right on short track sessions. Had a blast at the track, it is really amazing, everyone should drive it at least once I reckon, however after my 4th session I parked up but then returned to the car to find a patch of oil on the drivers side of the engine bay.

Oh shit, day over. there was a decent amount of oil all over everything, wasn't great. First suspicion was a leak from the oil relocation/cooler kit, which was second hand. Trailered it back to our accommodation and cleaned it all up but found nothing, which was even more disturbing really. There was still a decent amount of oil in there, above low (was overfilled for the track), so fired it up. Oil pressure goes straight up to the top of the guage... well, that's not good. Oil change and it comes down a bit but still a tad high. Take it for a short drive to the other end of PI, runs alright and pressure settles down a tad. Drain the oil pan... struck gold... or bronze.... shit.

I deduced that the blowby has popped the dipstick off, and the righthander onto the straight at PI has pushed oil up it and out the end, causing the leak, but i've also run low at a point and started to chew the bearings out. As the car was running with no noises/issues with the fresh oil I decided, what the heck i'll see if i can't do the great ocean road, and go from there, see if i either drive it home or drive it to a car transporter. We set off, and I made it to Torqay just past geelong before the car suddenly got rather hot, and then pumped a rather large plume of white smoke out the rear. Headgasket for sure.

At this stage I left the car overnight and jumped in with someone else to do the road. Luckily one of us had a trailer, so the car was trailered back to storage and then onto a Brisbane bound car transport.

Anyway, this takes it up to November last year. I'll continue on in another post tomorrow, i've written enough thisarvo. Apologies for all the inevitable spelling mistakes.

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A very good read. You must have a lot of patience. Could not handle taking the car out and constantly worrying about what was going to happen next.

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PC decided to die and i'm back at work so this has been delayed a bit.

After I got the car back from Melbourne it was running but with a bad knock. crawled it up the driveway and shut it off. Dropped the oil out... not great, couple of liters of coolant where it shouldn't be.

Before Christmas with the help of my dad and a few friends we pulled the engine out through the top. Fun process... on a summers day. Had considered taking it out the bottom but in the end decided to go from the top. All in all not as bad as i expected, though had a lot of fouling on the AC compressor so may need to remove that to put it back in.



Got the gearbox off after a bit of head scratching, the car is a 1994 it has a pull type clutch. That done, up on the stand. Pictured: one broked engine. Note the weird water cooling arrangement, out of the block, into rear turbo, out of rear turbo into front turbo and then back to the cooling return. Not sure what Tomei was going for here, going to have to rectify that one.


Started stripping the engine down in my spare time over the holidays. Tomei!!!111one turbos off


Starting to untangle the intake side. Will probably be simplifying this more where possible. The cold air idle actually started to leak after i replaced the plenum earlier, i didn't realize i could delete it when running the haltech.


Cam covers off. Not pretty in there... nice glycol and oil sludge


more mess:


Head off. Dirty but not damaged. some head bolts had oil penetrating around them, others not. Not sure what the go is with that, any comments would be welcome for that one..


Gasket at the location pointed too on the previous photo. Not great...


Same area, other side


I also noted this on the rear of piston 6. Its rather odd, gasket has been pushed up by the piston a tad. looks like its been there for a while?


Bores look.. alright i guess


Rod bearings out... yeah, not good. Know where the sparklies came from. Cylinder 5 is the obvious one:




All stripped, ready to be sent off for... bigger and better things


So that's the descent into ruin, next up the future plans, in a few days.

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Sorry for the delay, been busy at work. Anyway, here goes.

First, a bit of a trip back in time. In the last half of last year I started to get seriously interested in the new garrett GTX turbo range. I was after a turbo with a bit more top end than garrett -9's, but without a heap of extra lag. To that end I acquired a set of GTX2860's complete with rear housings from a set of -5's. The attraction was light weight compressor that had good flow. That being said, the rear of them is the same size as a -5, so perhaps I should have picked up a pair of -9's or -7's, bought the compressor wheel and swapped it over. That's for someone else to try. ;)

The gtx2860's (and 63's, 67's etc) ship with an anti surge housing, designed with slip over couplings, 3" inlet 2" outlet from memory. Due to the placement of the turbos on the 26, any silicone joiner on the inlet of the rear turbo sits about 3cm from the front dump, and quickly fails as other people have found out. To that end the guy I got the turbos off had welded on a set of plasma man clamps to the front with some pipes of a decent length to get them out of the area.
To maintain a stock look however, I decided to get a set of stock gtr turbo's and scavenge their front housings, have them machined to suit and chucked on the front. I'm not 100% sure of the housings origin, as the wheels that were inside them originally were N1 size, though the rears were odd. Regardless, the turbo shop got them to fit with no issues, leaving this:



Anyway, flash forward to having a rather broken engine. After bouncing around between options, chatting to some friends and reading around SAU I settled on a general build.

Spool 2.8L stroker, 9.5:1 compression ratio.

all the trimings for studs and gaskets

unigroup 260 cams

full head reco

tomei oil pump

Hi octane sump

Hi octane crank trigger

Quaife front diff

nismo coppermix competition twin plate

Fuel system to be determined... but big

The goal of the setup is to have a car that's a jack of all trades (and good at none I guess :P). Something that will be fine on the street, and look stock, hence the twins, but something that can go to a track day, and while not be at the bleeding edge of competitiveness, something I can have fun with, but not break, hence the oiling mods.

The turbo's have a flow potential greater than -5's, but do love big boost so i'd expect the car to be running 30+ PSI. That being said at that pressure -5's are capable of 450kw, so, in theory, with everything going well, its feasable I might see that much power. Time will tell. Would i have been better off with -9's? time will also tell there :P

Anyway, once it was decided on what I was getting, the orders went out and parts started rolling in.

First from just jap



More boxes arrived, this time from Sydney


More goodies inside. Sump extension, crank trigger kit and cam cover bafflesP1130799_zpsqjyya2hk.jpg

Should stop the oil from moving around on the track


I also got some overnight parts from Japan, tomei oil pump and greddy oil cooler parts. My old cooler was undoubtedly full of bearing, and I wanted something that would fit in. Additionally, the existing thermostat block i had setting infront of the diff wasn't exactly in a great spot and the new sump would get it in the way. However i incorrectly assumed the greddy cooler was the same size as the old Earls japan cooler i had (shorter so it could fit in easily under the passanger headlight), only to find it was the same size as pretty much all others coolers. Oh well.

I could have got the full gtr kit for an extra 400 bucks, but I can reuse my hoses somewhat, and make brackets and air guides for much less.



sump got welded up by Jfab. I literally only just now realised the angle that the driveshaft tube and sump base sit on compared to the engine block due to its mounting angle. Heh.


I also got something from Racepace in victoria that is probably classed as more of a... want than need... item, but to heck with it, it sounds really good on a Friends car.


I have quite a collection of front pipes now....
Bottom are what was on the car, where the front turbo was only a 2" for some reason. picked up some 2.75" to 3" ones, second from bottom.
There's also an aborted attempt at the equal length ones I picked up with the turbos.


Picked up a HKS exhaust as an interim. May not be big enough, but it was cheap and i'll get the flange modified to fit a bigger cat, ready for a bigger exhaust in future when required.


Also got the cam covers painted up


That's the future caught up to unfortunately, so updates will now slow to a crawl. Engine is still curently being build, there's been a rather large delay on pistons and I still don't have a more concrete date than a few weeks. After that there's the work involved with bolting up all the bolt ons, putting the engine in, attaching everything, getting it running, deciding on a fuel system and just getting it running. Lot of work ahead, any comments or suggestions would be welcome.

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Tip: check the angle you're O2 wideband sensor will be on with your R/P front pipe.

Mine is on a downwards angle for no reason at all, yours looks the same from here so I'd get that fixed before fitting it.

I will take mine off eventually and get another bung refitted as it's now the lowest point underneath my car by far and plenty of room to put it at a 90 degree angle from 12 o'clock.

I also noticed you have the same tomei oil pump as me so with those gtx turbos get a .8mm pill or restrictor at "least" for your turbo cartridges because your oil pump will kill your turbos oil seal.

If you're keeping your oe airbox remember to mod the shit out of it.

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Yeah, that's a good point, i'll get it looked at when i'm getting the exhaust fitted up, plenty of opportunity to get it right there, need to get it ceramic coated aswell.

I hadn't forgotten about the restrictors, though I haven't got them yet. I did have a quick search and didn't find anywhere the sells them, (I think, i'm not even sure what they look like) but I might have just been using the wrong search term. Where did you get yours from?

As far as the airbox, I have a few idea's of what to do.
Do you still use the standard airbox to turbo pipes, and do you have any issues with them on your setup?

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any comments or suggestions would be welcome.

Fix those rusted out sil panels, get rid of that stupid hks exhaust and get a custom 4 inch exhaust.

Also go back your original idea 2 years ago, BW EFR 7670, full race manifold and twin gates :thumbsup:

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Thanks man. Progress has been ticking away. Visited the builder on Monday, the stroker kit and block were all laid out and the head ready to assemble so progress is being made. I forgot to take my camera but the dam crank pistons and rods looked sexy. Hell of a crown on the pistons to reach the 9.5:1 ratio also. With luck I may even have it this week.

Fix those rusted out sil panels, get rid of that stupid hks exhaust and get a custom 4 inch exhaust.

Also go back your original idea 2 years ago, BW EFR 7670, full race manifold and twin gates :thumbsup:


Since I don't have any other progress, will just post up some various videos from the car

note on 3rd to 4th you can hear it drop out of the power band. such shit turbos

Messing around on the skidpan:

SAU Happylaps out at QR:
warning, I probably start talking shit with Rick at the end

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More Pictures?
That I can do! Not much else.. No engine this week... and I just sold the GTX turbos... *something something dark side*...

anyway, more from that photoshoot






Down on PI


Up in the GC hinterland



Hanging out


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Thanks Pete

Just love white Skyline Pics

Have to tell you I only ever saw one white 33 up here , no 32s and it looked great.

Cannot believe I bought a black car , any type of black car. I think I had a brain meltdown because it was a Skyline ???

Loved the reflection "like" photo with the 34 :)

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New part arrived today.



Borg Warner ERF 8374, with the 0.92 AR internal gate housing. Also got the turbosmart dual port waste-gate actuator for it and the speed sensor so I can keep track of what the turbo is doing (though i don't expect it to be getting close to overspeed on the setup, it'll be nice to see what's going on)
First impressions of the turbo was "holy crap this is big". Second was "wow, I didn't expect it to be this big".
but all in all the quality of all the castings look great (I think they had some issues with them for a few months back when they were new), and the thing that really gets me is that it only weighs 13.6kg's as pictured, which is amazingly light. I'm pretty sure the gtx2860's I had were 12kg's each. Once you add up the weight of the BOV's and piping i can remove, It'll be interesting to see how much total weight, and its weight in front of the front wheels, is lost. I'm going to try to tally it up.

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That was quick, Pete. Where did you order from and how much?

What manifold did you end up going with?

Give the wheels a little spin. They're so light :D. That one wheel spins easier and "more free" than a single -5.

Good idea with the sensor display. If not needed, it's still cool to know and see how much you have left up your sleeve.

They're a massive unit. A PTE 646 looks so small in comparison. Not sure what it is with the BW's but a lot of their housings are massiv. Joeys 300 SX is the same.

Now hurry up and get it on!!!

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Yeah, that's a good point, i'll get it looked at when i'm getting the exhaust fitted up, plenty of opportunity to get it right there, need to get it ceramic coated aswell.

I hadn't forgotten about the restrictors, though I haven't got them yet. I did have a quick search and didn't find anywhere the sells them, (I think, i'm not even sure what they look like) but I might have just been using the wrong search term. Where did you get yours from?

As far as the airbox, I have a few idea's of what to do.

Do you still use the standard airbox to turbo pipes, and do you have any issues with them on your setup?

Sorry didn't get any notifications for some reason and something tells me I I'm too late anyway, looks like you've gone single.

but yeah I'm using all the standard intake rubber hoses just the slightly tickled cast alloy elbows on the turbos intake that I got from Paul and powder coated trust hard pipes & std twin turbo pipe and that's it but no issues at all

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