Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

View and post your Nissan/Datsun project(s)
RONSLYCHUK
Supporter
Posts: 616
Joined: 12 Sep 2004 19:42
Location: Abbotsford B.C.

Re: Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

Post by RONSLYCHUK »

All I can say is AMAZING!
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

September vacation update #1

Post by DADZSUN »

As promised updates will be coming more frequently over the next month or two.

It's pretty exciting to be back working on the 635. I've had a nice summer break and am recharged. Also cool is my oldest son has decided to dive right into the 280z project (now that he's suddenly decided it's now magically his), so both cars are progressing at a decent clip (I'll post more Z pics when I get a chance).

WorkToDo.jpg
WorkToDo.jpg (268.13 KiB) Viewed 743 times

Here's pretty much how it started the month. I recently reinstalled the motor/tranny and was very pleased how all the mounts beautifully lined up. It really was a 5 minute affair.

ToDo.jpg
ToDo.jpg (221.93 KiB) Viewed 743 times

By not means is that a comprehensive list of things to do, more like what I'm hoping to accomplish this month.

SpeedHutGauges.jpg
SpeedHutGauges.jpg (362.9 KiB) Viewed 743 times

The plan is to address the interior stuff inside the house at night. Gauges are an easy item to include in that list. Yes, the stock cluster is fragile...

FuelTank.jpg
FuelTank.jpg (239.27 KiB) Viewed 743 times

I epoxyied the outside of the tank where I welded, the used POR Fuel Tank pain inside. There was ZERO staging for this pic...

ClutchPocket.jpg
ClutchPocket.jpg (127.53 KiB) Viewed 743 times

I wanted a little more depth to the clutch throw and realised there's enough room between the cab and grafted G35 tower.

ClutchThrow.jpg
ClutchThrow.jpg (141.87 KiB) Viewed 743 times

I tacked a bit of metal around the pedal and will double check clearance next week before closing it in.

Bushings.jpg
Bushings.jpg (379.21 KiB) Viewed 743 times

This is my current task. Literally every bushing in the front & rear will be swapped out. I don't have a hydraulic press but something makes me think I will soon.

2020-MIG-STICK-202-min.png
2020-MIG-STICK-202-min.png (123.77 KiB) Viewed 743 times

Speaking of new equipment, after 5 or so years, and a TON of hours, my Lincoln Weld Pak 140HD crapped out. Perfectly, shitty timing of course. Hence the tank and bushing tasks while I wait for my new welder and installation of a proper 230V 40A circuit. I went with the Canaweld MIG 202. It's supporting local and the reviews have been very favorable. The welder has since arrived and despite not yet using it, it does appears to be quite a bit more professional/heavy duty setup compared to previous welder. I did seriously contemplate a multiprocessor MIG/TIG welder but the past few months I've decided that time to explore new projects/endeavors/skills is severely limited and I need to simplify.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
User avatar
Edm620
Posts: 108
Joined: 06 Dec 2017 20:44
Location: Edmonton

Re: Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

Post by Edm620 »

Speaking of your old Lincoln welder, I'm curious what settings you found favorable when welding the thin (sometimes porous) sheetmetal.
"If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there"
Ugandan Proverb
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

Re: Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

Post by DADZSUN »

Edm620 wrote: 09 Sep 2021 12:23 Speaking of your old Lincoln welder, I'm curious what settings you found favorable when welding the thin (sometimes porous) sheetmetal.
Honestly, my welder had very little settings, 4 to be exact.

WeldPak140.jpg
WeldPak140.jpg (191.48 KiB) Viewed 286 times

Here's my typical workflow when addressing thin Datsun metal:

1) Whenever possible that Datsun porous metal is cut out.

2) While 'A' setting on the Weldpak is actually pretty friendly for 18-21 Ga steel (0.025 wire), I'm not always convinced the weld penetration is strong enough. I typically only use that setting to tack really thin stuff, then move on to the following step.

3) Over the years I've learned that I like to weld hot and a bit quicker than some I've watched online. My goal is to add mass, then burn. Short bursts in 'B' setting with as high of wire speed as possible to lay metal around the perimeter. I focus on multiple areas to allow the heat to be evenly distributed. I then allow it to cool a bit then proceed with adding welds in the area of focus.

CopperBackPlate.jpg
CopperBackPlate.jpg (97.3 KiB) Viewed 286 times

4) If required, I add my copper backing plate. This is an immensely handy tool. It helps add mass and to fill larger gaps without allowing the weld to stick to it.


Below is a recent job on my pickup bed. There were a few spots where the gap was many times thicker than the weld wire (2-3 mm).

TruckBed.jpg
TruckBed.jpg (154.95 KiB) Viewed 286 times

Here is the backside where my backing plate rested. You can see the weld penetration is quite good and level. It makes cleaning up quite easy.

Baskside.jpg
Baskside.jpg (457.97 KiB) Viewed 286 times
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

October update

Post by DADZSUN »

Probably par for the course on this build, I wasn't successful in getting as much done in September as hoped.

Replacing the welder was FAR more of a PITA than expected. Breakers and appropriate wire are in short supply due to COVID, and somewhat surprising but understandable, is the increase demand for high voltage/amperage circuits fed to garages for electric car.

As a result I was stuck doing mostly non-welding things which are still necessary but not as visible.

I did manage to finish the gauge cluster. I like the titanium color cluster with white trim (truck will be white) that will contract the black dash nicely. I will eventually cut out the right side for a double DIN headunit but for now I have higher priorities.

GaugeCluster.jpg
GaugeCluster.jpg (349.19 KiB) Viewed 279 times

Also finished is the baffled 720 (19GA) tank modifications. The Tanks PA-4 (250 lph) baffled setup was completed once I found a proper submersible fuel hose - after I discovered the supplied example wasn't long enough and held the pump assembly about 1" off the bottom of the baffle.

TanksIncPA4.jpg
TanksIncPA4.jpg (135.85 KiB) Viewed 279 times

If you're in a similar situation, be sure to spec a 'submersible' fuel hose, SAE number is circled.

SubmersibleHose.jpg
SubmersibleHose.jpg (96.64 KiB) Viewed 279 times

The recessed electronic fuel sender and pump are now sealed and fastened. I just need to reinstall and wire it up.

72019GATankDone.jpg
72019GATankDone.jpg (128.93 KiB) Viewed 279 times

Finally I was able to move onto the front suspension. It turned out that 5 of the 6 (!) front ball joints needed replacing.

MainBallJoint.jpg
MainBallJoint.jpg (188.22 KiB) Viewed 279 times

Unfortunately, I discovered the ball joints within the arms are not replaceable. So more cash had to be coughed up for something I thought was done - again, par for the course when doing a full rebuild.

NewBallJoints.jpg
NewBallJoints.jpg (176.05 KiB) Viewed 279 times

These new arms then had to get permanently altered as I proceed with my goal to replace EVERY bushing on the 635 with Whiteline.

TCRadiusArm.jpg
TCRadiusArm.jpg (182.02 KiB) Viewed 279 times
RadiusNewBushings.jpg
RadiusNewBushings.jpg (199.09 KiB) Viewed 279 times

After the Lower Control Arm bushing was replaced I noticed that action was not as smooth as expected.

LCABushing.jpg
LCABushing.jpg (103.32 KiB) Viewed 279 times

Turns out there was a tab on the lower subframe to keep the washer in check. In this case it had to be removed or else the bushing would definitely be torn.

LCAMountCleaned.jpg
LCAMountCleaned.jpg (108.15 KiB) Viewed 279 times

I'll be starting on the rear bushings next and hopefully the experience I gained doing the front will make this a bit more efficient.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

Crossbar modification

Post by DADZSUN »

One more quick update that I decided to partition (mostly due to the 10 picture limit).

Due to the increase engine torque this frame will be facing, I've added several strong bracing along the frame rails.

Crossbar.jpg
Crossbar.jpg (192.78 KiB) Viewed 276 times

One bar comes close to the driveshaft. I was assured by the driveshaft vendor that flex along the 5' length would be minimal and that clearance was enough but I figured it's never going to be easier to rectify than now.

BeforeClearance.jpg
BeforeClearance.jpg (63.27 KiB) Viewed 276 times

When considering this modification one of my concerns was weakening the brace. Thankfully Curt came to the rescue with a nice .25" walled tube from an old hitch mount. There was a time in the past I'd throw this stuff out but metal is so damn expensive now...

Curt.jpg
Curt.jpg (182.97 KiB) Viewed 276 times

This also gave me a chance to try my new Canaweld welder (fabricated in Ontario I believe). I really love this thing and the original hassle to setup the circuit has proven to be totally worth it.

Pocketed.jpg
Pocketed.jpg (99.58 KiB) Viewed 276 times

After a quick cleanup I now have additional clearance, and more importantly, peace of mind.

AfterClearance.jpg
AfterClearance.jpg (90.05 KiB) Viewed 276 times

Tasks like these are only taking me just under an hour to complete which is a testament to increased experience and better equipment.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
User avatar
Edm620
Posts: 108
Joined: 06 Dec 2017 20:44
Location: Edmonton

Re: Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

Post by Edm620 »

Thanks for sharing about your welding setup. I have a Lincoln Mig-pak 180 which is essentially the same unit, has 5 voltage settings (A-E) with 180 amp output max and runs on 240VAC. I still am struggling to find the settings that work best for me, grew up doing stick welding on structural steel but lordy this isn't the same!
"If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there"
Ugandan Proverb
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

Bushings... done!!!

Post by DADZSUN »

Here's a second update on the bushings. I can finally say the front & back are done.


For document's sake here's my master list.

WhitelineBushings.jpg
WhitelineBushings.jpg (198.78 KiB) Viewed 118 times

As I worked through the back it became apparent that quite of few of the stock rubber bushings were toast.

Before:
Done.jpg
Done.jpg (53.41 KiB) Viewed 118 times

After:
RearSpringBucket.jpg
RearSpringBucket.jpg (227.19 KiB) Viewed 118 times

The suspension component that required the most work was the rear upright. 6 bushings in there!!!

RearUprightBushings.jpg
RearUprightBushings.jpg (219.69 KiB) Viewed 118 times

The easiest OEM bushings to remove were ironically the bigger rear subframe and diff bushings.

SubframeBushing.jpg
SubframeBushing.jpg (186.2 KiB) Viewed 118 times
VLSDBushings.jpg
VLSDBushings.jpg (222.21 KiB) Viewed 118 times
RearSubframeBushingsDone.jpg
RearSubframeBushingsDone.jpg (177.45 KiB) Viewed 118 times

While working on the subframe I upgraded the rear camber (spring bucket pivot) with a more aggressive eccentric bolt.

EccentricBolt.jpg
EccentricBolt.jpg (117.87 KiB) Viewed 118 times

Here's the difference between the stock (background) washer and the new one.

EccentricDelta.jpg
EccentricDelta.jpg (127.7 KiB) Viewed 118 times

This larger eccentric washer required a wider slot to accommodate the larger change in positioning.
WidenedSlot.jpg
WidenedSlot.jpg (147.88 KiB) Viewed 118 times

Rear suspension is now done. New sway bushing and end links also installed.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

Last cab fitment and frame strengthening

Post by DADZSUN »

I haven't spent much time covering the work I put into the frame so here's a little update.

The frame has quite a bit of additional strengthening. Most of it was torsional in focus to offset the VQ35DE's torque. In the pic below I'm pointing at the only two stock cross bracings.

StockBracing.jpg
StockBracing.jpg (199.69 KiB) Viewed 112 times

When working on the rear subframe bushings I noticed that when I put weight onto the rear of the frame it would flex about the jack stand point.

PivotPoint.jpg
PivotPoint.jpg (166.22 KiB) Viewed 112 times

After quite a bit of thought I figured the cab and bed act somewhat as structured members when mounted (bushings are pretty stiff, read: Hockey pucs :lol:). So my longitudinal focus was directed to the point between the bed and cab along with the apparent weakest point on the frame. I added some tubing and 1/4 plating to the those areas. I'm not sure how much it helped... seemed to flex less when I applied weight? Either way it can't hurt and the weight location is ideal (low and not in the front half).

Reinforcement.jpg
Reinforcement.jpg (80.04 KiB) Viewed 112 times

After galling one of the original frame bolts I installed, I decided to beef up the four main rear subframe bolts. Primary changes were a thicker grade 8 bolts, bolt head to resist being pulled out, and two layers of 1"x2" .120 wall tubing to keep everything in place. A stronger welder and deeper nuts will also help. After they were installed I fabricated proper bolt-in double shear bracing for the front & rear.

NewSubframeMountsVSOld.jpg
NewSubframeMountsVSOld.jpg (278.15 KiB) Viewed 112 times
NewSubframeMounts2.jpg
NewSubframeMounts2.jpg (127.25 KiB) Viewed 112 times

Finally I reinstalled the cab for what I hope is a final fitment.

FinalCabMount.jpg
FinalCabMount.jpg (157.65 KiB) Viewed 112 times

The good news is that it slipped together quite easily which is a good sign.

CabMounted.jpg
CabMounted.jpg (175.63 KiB) Viewed 112 times

I took the time to double check interior fitment, it has been a few months since I properly sat in it. LOTS of room! The shifter location (hole) is perfect but I will be removing the offset in the shifter arm and going straight.

Interior.jpg
Interior.jpg (217.62 KiB) Viewed 112 times

I have a few small things to double check/weld up and then the cab will be pulled for seam seal followed by sound dampening paint.

CabMounted2.jpg
CabMounted2.jpg (182.38 KiB) Viewed 112 times

It really does feel like the truck's progress is moving quickly. I'm putting a steady 15-20 hr/s week into it.

Next step is to disassemble, flip the frame to weld/clean/paint, then clean/paint the top. Add brake lines, then mount a painted bed and cab (not before I confirm the VQ fires up).

I have another customer build in the garage right now which will take most of my focus throughout the winter. When I have time I'll work on the electronics/interior.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
RONSLYCHUK
Supporter
Posts: 616
Joined: 12 Sep 2004 19:42
Location: Abbotsford B.C.

Re: Project 635 - 300HP RWD 620

Post by RONSLYCHUK »

Some amazing work going on there. I can’t wait to see it finished.
User avatar
DADZSUN
Supporter
Posts: 503
Joined: 08 Aug 2011 18:35
Location: Ottawa, ON

Project 635 gets some drifting bits

Post by DADZSUN »

Since my last update I've been throwing a steady 15-20hrs/week at project 635. Unfortunately I haven't painted yet (nor seam sealed) because the final cab clean-up has been taking quite a bit more time than anticipated. Rest assured my To-Do list is damn near done for this phase and I literally have to look for stuff to do.

In an interest to spend more bonding time with my boys this coming summer, I recently decided to add some minor drifting tweaks to the truck. I don't want to compromise streetability, but subtle little mods to make sliding sideways that much more fun & reliable.

ChaseBaysHandbrake.jpg
ChaseBaysHandbrake.jpg (306.5 KiB) Viewed 45 times

First up is the Chase Bays inline hydraulic handbrake. Reviewed by many as a quality product, and although there's still a little more lateral play in the main pivot than expected, it's a pretty nice unit. I like that I can convert it to 'independent' to power dedicated rear calipers down the road if I want to get more serious. For now it will be plumbed into the existing rear brake hydraulic line.

HydraulicHandbrakeBase.jpg
HydraulicHandbrakeBase.jpg (122.66 KiB) Viewed 45 times

I wasn't sure where this would be best placed. Using the optional (but affordable and highly recommended) mounting plate, I decided to mount inside the shifter and ahead of it. In the end I was super pleased with the location & natural ergonomics to reach.

HandbrakePlacement_1.jpg
HandbrakePlacement_1.jpg (119.33 KiB) Viewed 45 times

The next thing that stood out was the damn offset in the 'shortened' shifter.

HandbrakePlacement_2.jpg
HandbrakePlacement_2.jpg (85.32 KiB) Viewed 45 times

Despite being advertised as coming with a straight shift lever, it came with the offset which curiously removes most of the point of having a top-mount 'shortest possible' location. Speaking to the vendor I was told that customers requested the offset and there was no optional straight shifter, nor was he really interested in building one. For anyone who's curious, it's a M18 x 1.5. Turns out 02 sensors use the same specs so I ordered O2 sensor bung extenders and it threaded up beautifully. Now my machinist can build the upper lever and tap/thread the O2 sensor bung.

O2SensorBase.jpg
O2SensorBase.jpg (114.44 KiB) Viewed 45 times

Finally, for Black Friday I ordered two more drifty stuff - steering rack spacers and differential brace.

GKTechSteeringSpacer.jpg
GKTechSteeringSpacer.jpg (3.75 KiB) Viewed 45 times

The steering spacer is a little curious because it is placed between the rack and inner tie rod - forcing you to cut the threads on the outside of the inner rod to regain proper toe alignment. Seems like one step forwards and then one step back... I can only assume these spacers change the working angle on the tie rods thereby giving an extra 19mm throw (both sides total). As FYI there are two pieces in the pic, one is a female/male spacer, and the other is a thick washer with the logic that there's enough extra tie rod thread to handle it. There are thousands of 350z/G35 being thrown around out there and I have yet to read of one tearing out the tie rod due to lack of threads, so I'll assume my lighter 635 (~2500-2600lbs) should be ok.

GKTeckDiffBrace.jpeg
GKTeckDiffBrace.jpeg (32.81 KiB) Viewed 45 times
GKTeckDiffBrace_2.jpg
GKTeckDiffBrace_2.jpg (8.06 KiB) Viewed 45 times

Next up is the differential brace. The 350Z R200 is only fastened on the rear via a single threaded stud off the cover. It's been known to snap. This brace takes advantage of a pre-drilled hole within the aluminum subframe to provide a second mounting point. That along with my Whiteline bushings should make for a responsive and reliable setup.

I guarantee my next update will have pics & info on the application of seam sealer and 'Second Skin' Thermal/acoustic deadening paint to the cab.
'72 Datsun 510 - MS KA24e, Watanabes, STI R180 w/CV axles, R&P assisted steering
'76 Datsun 620 - VQ35DE, CD009, G35 suspension & brakes.
'76 Datsun 280z - 2021 Datsun Restomods R&D project
Creativity outlet: www.datsunrestomods.com
Post Reply