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Ryan's Micra Blog

Been so busy with life.
At the end of next week I'll be finishing off the engine swap. It's managed to go to London and back twice though.
Then, once it's working fully, I'll clean it, and fix a whole heap of tiny broken things everywhere.
For now, my rear wiper blade detached, I couldn't find an old spare 16", so I put my previous 18" front left wiper on.
Actually I really like this. Will use 18" in the future.

It tucks under the spoiler perfectly. Now I can see more.

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My AC backlight has gone faulty! Now I have to remake this backlight.

Action photo of me hauling ass into uni, you can see the nose raised under acceleration.

This was, however, the last action shot for a while! Something went terribly wrong.
After some somewhat excited driving, suddenly I lost the ability to change gear. I had to push the car to a suitable location. It was early morning hours by then.

Had a little walk to see if anything was on the road instead of on the car.

I called for some help, and whacked out the beacon.

I've been keeping tow rope and a beacon in my car this whole time I've had half of an engine.


Help arrived!

So let's both tow a car for the first time ever.
I still had the engine in neutral so I kept it running for brake and steering pressures.


Hazards off (to indicate) and beacon on, away we went.

Chucked on my front foggies to better see the rope without shining light at Eddie.

That was actually really easy. The rope tightened quite a bit on both ends so un-knotting was probably the most difficult part.

A couple of days later, a brand new Luk clutch appeared from another K11 fella.

Time to start pulling stuff off to get this done.

Guess what? This brace wasn't even fully done up at the back. And that mount/anti-vibration thing on the front wasn't even attached to the engine at all. Nice.
We had to stop there though as we didn't have a 17mm spanner.

The next day we continued, 3 of us this time. Some more of the car was taken apart.
Guess what else was loose? The starter wasn't even bolted in at all.

Old clutch out. Failure detected!


I got the new clutch in, but spent the rest of the day trying to get the gearbox on. We just couldn't. We had to give up!

Now I've got work all weekend, so I'm actually staying at Eddie's as it's near work.
I'm car-less for the first time in a long long time! This sucks!

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So, back at my home, after a few nights over at Eddies.
My brake disks are now looking like coral reefs, but they'll be fine once the wheels are on. I really really need to replace the pads on the right anyway (but the piston gets jammed).

Out comes the gearbox. This time on the creeper trolley.

I tried and tried, but couldn't get it on before night. I had to reassemble the clutch as it had kept going out of alignment.


The next day (or whenever it was), I got it so close! So I called Eddie over once more.
I didn't get many photos, but. We got it on! What a horrible job it is, getting a gearbox on, when the engine is in the car. We only had one jack at this point and it wasn't even the big one. I absolutely could not have done it on my own.
The next step was to get the starter motor on, fix a coolant leak near the back of the engine, then just reassemble everything.

I got tired of being up close with my left front foglight, so I took it off and emptied loooooads of water out from it.
With my garage hair dryer, I took off the glass.
It seems that the glass is the only part of the entire construction that is in good shape.

The bulb was somehow in at an angle, so at the top, and around the hole, it had burnt, and even melted a little.

At the bottom, as I knew, the whole bottom was black, and the wire things had curled up and fallen off. There are even black spots around.
The bulb itself was okay, but the plug on both the bulb side and car side were totally burnt out.

The next day, with a little help from Eddie one last time (until 3-4pm), I fixed things and assembled things. I found that the alternator was loose! So I tightened that. Also, the exhaust manifold was loose. In fact, one of the studs/nuts was completely missing. So I tightened them all down and replaced the missing one. Sadly the exhaust blow is still happening, though hopefully quieter (probably not).
The coolant had been leaking from a metal pipe that appears to come from the water pump, which feeds a bunch of pipes near the front. This was in the way when removing/replacing the gearbox and had been pulled out. I replaced the foglight with a blanking piece from Cassie's bumper.
It turned out that my 27mm socket was missing. So I had to hand-tighten the driveshaft nuts for now. Being on splines and having nowhere to go, I wasn't concerned I'd lose the shafts. But I did put pins in the ends, and the wheel centrecaps in case the nuts free themselves. I've been told that it's bad for the wheel bearings, but I'll be tightening them tonight as my socket has been recovered.
So... the car was finally reassembled.

And it started, drove, and changed gears. Actually, it starts up most of the time currently. The starter motor solenoid seems to get stuck. Probably gotten bad from it not being attached for a month or so.
The power steering is intermittent, especially when cold. It also grinds when at about half lock in either direction. So something's off with the power steering.
There is a slight whirring sound when the clutch isn't being pressed in. Initially I thought it sounded like the release bearing, but now I'm thinking it's more gearbox internal. I know I never completely filled it up with oil, and it does make cool whirry sounds in 1st and to a degree in 2nd gear.

Today, I did a few more things. I forgot to attach this front mount/vibration thing, so I did so. I accidentally snapped the plug for the front O2 sensor, but whatever. I also tightened down some bits including my ghetto coilpack holder studs.

I also changed the wheel nuts on the rear wheels so that they now have the correct taper angle, and are fitted right. I removed the rear right wheel spacer too. The wheel still pokes out a bit more than the left one, but at least now it's not rubbing on bumps. Unfortunately the tyre has gotten a little shredded from that. It won't happen now, but I may need to try a different tyre before the upcoming MOT.

Finally, proper wheel nuts and centrecaps. The car is at record levels of filthy, so some time, I'll buy a bucket and sponge and really give it a good proper clean.

I'm so glad it's done. Even though my car still isn't fully assembled, it's driveable once again. When the exhaust (front and back) is repaired, the oil leak stopped, and the coilpack setup is tidied up, I can focus on smaller things and clean it. We're getting there, just slowly.

These damn cars. I love them. If only I wasn't so busy at work and uni all the time.

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Update: Shafts are tightened down. I checked the fluid level for the power steering. It's way below minimum. So I'll buy some Gear oil and some ATF some time soon. Maybe we just hadn't burped out all of the air in the PAS when we filled it last.
Update 2: The gearbox certainly sounds rough at high speed. I'll try adding some more oil, but I may well need to look for a new one. Luckily a facelift 1.0 gearbox is pretty cheap and quite easily found.

One thing I kept forgetting to add: I removed a plug from the gearbox which is rumoured to be the "5th gear sensor". It's the one near the gear linkage. It's not on any wiring diagram, and I found that the reverse sensor is on the side of the gearbox. The rumour is that in 5th gear, the ECU deliberately adjusts the fuel ratio to limit power and fuel consumption. I didn't notice any effect tonight on the motorway, but that plug must be there for something. For now I'll leave it disconnected.
I got some ATF for the power steering, and some gearbox oil.
Power steering feels much lighter now, and consistent. Sound has gone.
I topped up the gearbox (not sure how much is in there now), doesn't seem much different but may be slightly quieter. Seems like the gearbox may need replacing. Not now though, after the trouble of getting it on.
I also added some engine oil as it was low.
Dirty car.

I just noticed, looking at my 1:24 model March, that the rear arches seem to be lower than the front ones.
Is that the case?

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So, in the last week my gearbox was sounding seriously rough. It was whining in all gears, as much as it sounded pretty cool, it was also making a few other noises which didn't sound good. There was a undescribably rough sound when decellerating, and the gearbox itself was whirring when it was spinning. Soon, it became very difficult to get into reverse gear. I had more luck shifting into reverse with the engine off and starting it then.
But in the last day, after a fairly long drive, it became almost impossible to change to reverse or even first. The gearstick did't seem to be in the right place, and gear shifts were nasty. It even started to clunk and shudder while driving.
The next day, I decided to drive to a friend's garage... But...

I reversed off of my driveway, and it clunked hard. Now it would only barely select reverse, and would lock up hard when the clutch was in. It wouldn't select any other gear. Gearbox oil began dripping out.

I managed to move it forwards a little bit but this was as far as it could go. I couldn't push the car, the wheels locked up. Even with the clutch pressed, it was locked. Notice the spots of gear oil on the road.

I had no choice, barely on the side of the road with hazard lights on, but to disconnect the drive shaft from the hub to allow the differential to spin and the wheels turn.

Luckily after disconnecting just one side it rolled. I wrapped the shaft spline with electrical tape as it had to sit in the wheel and it was scratching it. Notice the unusual hole in the centre of the wheel.

Someone came and got the car, I was still going to the garage. A donor car had just arrived there and a good CG10 gearbox was waiting for me for just £30.

So then, let's get this done...

Some time passed. It was the next day. Technically. It didn't feel like it. Is it Thursday now? I don't know, the gearbox change took so many hours I lost track of the day/night cycle.
Again had big troubles getting the gearbox mounted on this engine. It seemed that part of the trouble was the new clutch. It was a bit damaged at the centre hole. We ended up using a used clutch that wasn't damaged, but it's not got loads of material left on it, which is a shame.
Anyway, it was done. I was filthy, and had several cuts (one from a crowbar slipping and hitting my forehead)(and one from the cross-brace landing on my cheek).
It seems that the bolt that holds the rear gearbox mount and linkage together was too thin. With the proper bolt in place it feels a bit different, in a good way. I'm still using the nylon gearbox mount but vibrations seem stronger yet smoother. Feels a bit like riding a high-revving motorbike.
There was a power steering leak, but I think it was just a loose pipe, I think I've stopped it now.
The rear gearbox mount bracket seemed to be bent too. So I used the one from the donor car.
I finally tightened down the front strut brace. It's been totally loose since the CG13 swap. Not sure if it's a placebo effect but the steering feels different. Also in a good way.
Had to do a coolant change as the radiator was making the swap difficult.

Today, after getting home, I removed some unused brackets, to tidy up the engine bay. And lose weight of course. Yes, one of the bolts snapped.
I also connected the speed sensor as I was apparently going at 0mph all day and the mileage hasn't changed. I've still left the "5th gear sensor" unplugged.

There was a little leak. It's coolant. Seemed to stop after the engine was off for 5 minutes though. It seems to be coming from around the water pump. I know that's exactly where the PAS leak was coming from but I'm cerain that was ATF and this is coolant.

I've adjusted the clutch cable as this clutch disk has much less material.
It's so nice to drive now. Changing gear feels great. Could be partly to do with having the right bolt holding the mount together. The new gearbox is in great shape. I think it's from about 2000. There's still a million things to do, mainly finding and stopping the engine oil leak, and putting a proper cam cover on (along with my old CGA3 camshafts!). As long as it's done before Japfest in May.
I've found some front foglights for just £10! It's great to be in this club and communicate with other people, what a steal. I'm looking at buying some yellow bulbs for them, to see what it's like. They're like £3 so it's not hugely important if they suck.

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'and the gearbox itself was whirring when it was spinning. Soon, it became very difficult to get into reverse gear. I had more luck shifting into reverse with the engine off and starting it then.'

I have had the above issue for the last 3 years! but mine didn't get any worse tho luckily.

Glad yours is back up and running!
'and the gearbox itself was whirring when it was spinning. Soon, it became very difficult to get into reverse gear. I had more luck shifting into reverse with the engine off and starting it then.'

I have had the above issue for the last 3 years! but mine didn't get any worse tho luckily.

Glad yours is back up and running!

It may be worth storing a gearbox and being prepared for in case it happens! They're cheap!
Make sure you've got enough oil in there too.
Just had a weird thing happen. I put the key in the ignition barrel, popped the bonnet to fiddle with some stuff, closed it and went back to the door only to find that the car had locked itself!
I've seen some unusual locking behaviour lately, usually when reconnecting the battery, so it's very likely this is related to my battery going bad.
I tried to unlock the door with many spare keys to K11s I don't even have anymore, but the locks on this new car are all in really good shape and wouldn't budge.
One of my last attempts at getting in was trying the Cabrio key, and luckily, that one worked.
Looks like I'll have to be more careful until I change the battery.
Interestingly enough, it had lost a reasonable bit of coolant, and despite getting up to operating temperature and staying there (in a normal time too), the interior heater wouldn't get hot.
So I filled up the radiator with water and immediately the air became hot.
So I guess I need to locate and stop that coolant leak sooner than I hoped.

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Today I decided to have a go at replacing my keyfob. I was considering swapping out the rubber buttons, but there's no need. It's actually really easy to reprogram the fobs. I'll write up how to do it at the end of this post.
Seems that every battery in the old fobs I have were all flat. While I wasn't at home, I just took the existing battery from the old one and used that.
Look at how much nicer that is now! And it feels so much better to press.

I also chucked in a new MAF sensor, as it had been unplugged for ages. This one is once again a cheap remake (from the UK suprisingly, not Corona-spec), so if it goes bad like the last one did, I've got a few spares lying around, it's just that they're ~20 years old. Also they're still on throttle bodies, with the original hollow 5-point torx screws. For some bloody reason. It's nice to not have an engine management light on anymore. And it does feel like it's got more pull than it did.

When I got home I looked into why the dimmer switch backlight was going bad. Seems to be in the spade connectors at the back. They were very wobbly. I tightened down the spades so that they're on solidly, but it's still a bit flickery. For now at least it's staying on more frequently.

Then, I grabbed all of the keys I could (ones with remote fobs that is). I eventually found the spare key for my car too. So in total, 4 keyfobs, 2 with keyblades, and just one with the correct immobiliser chip.
I gave them all new batteries as they were all bad, and the one I was using was starting to lose its range a bit.
And after a little programming, I've got 4 remote lock keys. And more excitingly, my main key has some nice fresh buttons.

Now, onto reprogramming the keyfobs (since I don't see a post dedicated to it currently).

This will work on early & late second facelift K11s (2000-2003) with the integrated keyblade/fob, and will likely work on all other K11s fitted with stock remote central locking. This is also likely to work on other Nissan vehicles of the era.

First, I recommend replacing the battery. These keyfobs take the very common CR2032 battery, with a lifetime of ~10 years or more.
They can be split from the keyblade, and opened using another key, or better yet a flat screwdriver.

First, you need to put the remote locking unit into its programming mode. Insert a key into the ignition, and turn the ignition from OFF to ON, 6 times, within 10 seconds. You can remove the key from the ignition after this.
The unit will now enter programming mode, and will signal this with two flashes of the indicators.
It will stay in programming mode until the ignition is set to ON, 120 seconds pass, or if four fobs are programmed.
It will flash twice if it exits programming mode, or flash three times if 4 keys are added (also exiting programming mode).

To add a key, hold the UNLOCK button on the key, press the LOCK button 3 times, then release the UNLOCK button. The car will flash the indicators once for every key added. If the key isn't detected, it's likely that the battery is too weak (or even the buttons are too worn).
Bear in mind, it seems as if any keyfobs that were previously linked will no longer be linked to the car. So make sure that every key you intend to remotely lock/unlock the car is with you and you add them to the system during this time.

Remember that only 4 keyfobs can be linked.

If you intend to get an entirely new key, you'll need to program the remote fob, you'll need the keyblade cut, and you'll need a chip programmed to disable the immobiliser.

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Forgot to add, the window wash reservoir cap was rattling and making noise, for now I've slightly popped it off on one side.
Next morning, engine management light returns. I've cleared it again but it's either the cheap MAF sensor, or because of the massive exhaust blow out of cylinder 1.
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So then! It turns out the engine management light was for a different reason.
I can never get the fault code when it's showing, the app always says "no codes stored on ECU0". But it seems that I can get it to show pending (unverified) faults sometimes. So after resetting the warning, I left it for a little bit and requested any pending faults.
And there it was:

Park/Neutral Position (PNP) Switch.
So obviously that's because the "5th gear sensor" is unplugged. This of course makes me feel like the rumour isn't true about the ECU leaning the fuel ratio in 5th gear. However, it may still be the case, if so, I'd be interested in finding out how the switch works. Perhaps I could trigger the "is plugged in" but not trigger the "is 5th gear".
To be honest though, I'm thinking it's just a myth. I think it's two wires, so the only way two signals could travel through that layout would be a variable resistance/voltage, kinda like how the airbags are tested.

Apparently there's another lean-out mode, based on the speed. So if I could find which wire reports the car speed to the ECU and break it, I could see some interesting results at high speeds. Or, everything will go wrong and the warning light will come on again.

Also, I've always wondered why the ECU reports the throttle to only go between something like 8% and 87%. Could this be calibrated properly and allow the ECU to deliver more power?

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Foglights arrived. As I saw in the photo, they weren't very clear. The discolouration was actually a weird swirl of dirt on the inside of the glass.
They came with bulbs! Which is good, because I wouldn't want to use the crappy one from my original set.

Later, I found some time while waiting behind someone at a jetwash. He had a Sprinter and got 15 minutes on it, but he'd parked the van there before going inside for a ticket for the machine. Really bad jetwash etiquette.
Anyway, I put a normal SMD T3 in the AC button as the big bright one had failed. It was like a traditional LED but huge, and a rough stained plastic.
This standard one really doesn't work well here though. Even without having the cap on the switch, it's barely lit. I guess I'll have to try a different type then.

I copied Eddie (for once that way around), and replaced the red T3 in the rear demister with a white one. Wow, that looks better.

Home, and you can just about see the AC button lit up if you cover it up. Actually the camera picks it up more than your eyes would.

But the rear demister warning looks amazing. Look at how bright that is!

I cracked out the soldering iron and fixed a few things. First of all, I chopped off the melted foglight connector and put the one remaining spare on. For some reason it wouldn't solder together well, both the existing wire and the new plug wire were dark. But, it worked.
I then wired in the left corner light, as the wire got chopped in the last engine swap. Actually this time I tidied the wire up a bit using some of those sticky wire clip things.
I then made a whole new set of wires for the horns, which were both totally broken. It didn't work at first, but it turns out the horn fuse was blown. Probably pressed it with the dangling wire grounding on the alternator or something.
Oh, and I have washed the car a bit. Of course that wasn't nearly enough, but it's looking better. First time this year...
I noticed (I think you can see in the photo below still) that the coilpack for cylinder 3 was way too high up. The temporary bodge seems to be failing, which is resulting in unreliable sparks on #3 and oil coming out of the gaps around the stud. This may be fixed next week.

I took the glass off of the new foglights. It was really difficult, it took much much longer compared to the existing lamp I had. Speaking of which, these ones are genuine Nissan ones. At the bottom of the glass it says "Nissan" and "Hella". Where as on my old ones there was just some part code there. Also, these ones still have fully functioning adjuster wheels, and even the metal tabs where the bolt screws into were in better shape. These also have some angled rubber tubes coming off of the vent holes. So it seems my original set was bootleg and definitely not worth what I paid for them.
I was only meant to pull apart the left one to replace it, but after spending so long taking it apart, I realised I had separated the right one.

After cleaning the glasses, I polished and waxed the outside. I was going to wax the inside but thought maybe that wouldn't go too well with the heat these generate.

Getting them back on was tricky. When I thought I had softened the glue and stuck it back on, the glass would just fall out again. The glass actually weighs more than the entire rest of the unit.
In the end I decided to get the hot glue gun and glue them closed using that. Seems to have worked.

Back on the car. Now with proper bolts too. They look great. By some factor the cleanest part of the car right now. I've once again angled them as low as possible since foglights are meant to be aimed low, and I don't want them to be too bright to have on occasionally.

For some reason the camera didn't pick these up anything like how they actually looked. First of all they've got a warm-white, golden colour. Secondly they reflect in quite a weird way, lighting up a slight halo around the outside edge and not actually looking bright at all until you look at a lower angle.

A look at the two new lights in darkness. Again the AC light doesn't really look this bright.

And with backlights. I think something's wrong with the camera on this phone.

After a quick drive, it seems as if the hot glue was enough to hold the glass on. So I've actually achieved a bit today.

I also plugged in the neutral sensor (AKA "5th gear sensor"), because I don't feel like it works as rumoured. And I don't want to see the EML.
And after a drive, and testing the foglights, I feel like these ones are much much brighter. The reflectors were definitely a much shinier chrome. They really light up the ground in front of the car well.
Forgot to say, they both had some silver paint on the glass. Seems like someone tried to do some paint repair on the car as it was on a silver K11. Well, one that had been hit so hard from behind that it was more of a K7 than a K11, poor thing.

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I had 20 minutes after getting home to do something before heading off again, so I swapped the SMD T3 for a classic incandescent T3.
Again it looks much brighter than it is in the photo. It's barely noticeable, and I knew I'd leave them switched on.

Much better, this is how the switch looks like normally anyway. Much more turquiose/teal now. Also stone-age incandescent gets quite warm! And has such a slow on/off.

Big chunky bulbs are in the post.

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Some neat photos to start with. A friend took a snap of me when I arrived at his place.

Showing off my cool foggies.

So then! Here we are again...
The task was to replace what was left of the exhaust system with my spares. The old manifold was quite buggered. One of the nuts somehow managed to make its way through the stud hole in the manifold. The bolts at the bottom snapped off too, so that one's only really good for recycling now.
We also got to work on the cam cover. Turns out that the gasket was quite destroyed on the one I was using, so I'm borrowing a good one until I buy a new one (when I paint the cover some time).

I got a look at my differential from my old gearbox... Apparently this was jammed, which is why the car was locked in place.

While I had the exhaust off, I removed the heat shield from below the gear linkage. As expected, the gearstick spring was missing, and luckily enough I had a spare lying around. So I fitted it, and the gearstick behaves like it's supposed to. Neat!

Also, we made an adjustment to the new exhaust. That being removing the resonator. This should allow gas to flow better (I hope), and has made a very nice subtle exhaust note. Without the backbox, it sounds very rumbly. But for now I've got a regular backbox on the end.
It sounds nice. No more blowing from the manifold, and the exhaust isn't dangling along scraping the floor anymore.

As for the cam cover, I had them tidied up. Using an old coilpack cover for parts.


Looks good! Very happy with this, no more oil escaping from holes, and no more coilpack trying to escape! The existing holes had to be covered up of course. Apparently there may be more of these made in the future.

On the way home, being in Wales, there were a lot of flooded roads. I actually drove right into one (only seeing it at the last moment in the dark), and it seemed to be way too deep. So I stopped and reversed out. Doing that actually pulled the splashguard/aero-thing nearly off. So I'll have to re-attach that when I get a moment. Luckily the freshly-cleaned foglights didn't seem to fill with muddy water. I hope.

I left my OBD2 reader monitoring on the journey home. It gave some random fault codes that I couldn't identify. Thought it was interesting to see the min/max values for a usual journey.
Only noticed just now when I was uploading, that some gauges show weird negative results, and the rev gauge doesn't even show a minimum.
Could be related to a bad battery. On that note, I think there's a small problem with my ignition barrel. As sometimes when moving from ON to ACC, it'll disconnect for a tiny amount of time, enough to make the radio restart. I thought that was a bad battery but I'm now thinking the ignition barrel needs some attention. Well, it needs aligning properly anyway, so I'll look into it.

New brake pads fitted, finally. I've been hanging on to those for years. They were an advisory on last year's MOT. I've adapted to hardly use the brakes anyway. The ol' lift-and-shift is better.
And to finish off, 4-doors are weird. I feel like I have to squeeze to get into them because the door is so much shorter. Then when you're in there, the B-pillar is just there covering up the side view.


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Oh yeah and I tightened the smaller engine belt as it was squeaking when cold, and making the power steering judder. Seems to be tightened just like the alternator, but on the power steering pump, from underneath.
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Recently I've been having a really really REALLY noisy rattle sound coming from inside the car behind the dash, somewhere in the middle. It's been so noisy I actually can't hear the radio or engine over it. Yesterday I pulled apart some interior and found the suspect. It was the ECU and/or the plate the ECU mounts onto. For some reason the plate was bent, so I bent it back into shape, which made the vibrations happen slightly less frequently but otherwise didn't fix anything.
Later that night I happened to be investigating the engine bay. I've noticed a collection of oil at the front, near the gearbox. Luckily it didn't smell like gearbox oil, so it's definitely from the engine. Then I found out something interesting.

There are two little holes here in this oil pipe! Small, but definitely full holes. Well then, that's another oil leak point found!
I also noticed a lot of oil around the air intake pipe, suggesting that I should put the breather filter back on (it was off because it's quite clogged, and when the cam cover had holes in it I felt like building pressure would result in oil coming out of the top [evidenced by oil on the bonnet, and even one of the coilpacks popping up]).

Today, I tightened down every single 10mm bolt I could find that was on or near the ECU plate. Seems I gave up with one of the 3 bolts that the ECU itself is held in with, as one was missing. They're a real pain to access. Hopefully this has stopped the rattling. There was also a loose 10mm in there, but it's so jammed in place it's not going to rattle, and it wasn't worth the effort of taking out.
I also cleaned out a bunch of crap from inside my car. I hate having stuff in the interior.

I also tidied up that hose/pipe and put some tape around it to hopefully stop or limit the leak. My spare engine doesn't have the right pipe as it's a real coilpack engine.
Chucked in the last of my coolant as there's still a slight coolant leak from the pump, but very little.

I may consider fitting my summer wheels again, the weather seems to be getting much more summery, quickly! Just need to watch out for the bottomless potholes scattered everywhere here where I live (must be because of the flooding).

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Looks like I've run into a problem with the cam cover! I've lost coilpack 2! I'll have to occasionally poke this back down, then. I did a launch later that day and the coilpack actually split off leaving the coil itself bending down into the hole. The engine wasn't impressed.
Got a slightly scary noise in the city, which I correctly guessed was the radiator fan. The (now a bit more loose) front O2 sensor had gotten into the fan blade and was buzzing in it.

Today, I replaced the broken footwell light. This time I've put it in diagonally as to limit the curves (as these always lose stick first).

Now with some light, it turns out that the rattling didn't go away. It perhaps became a little less frequent and loud but it was still well and truly there. I found exactly what it was. The ECU itself. The ECU is contained in a metal box made from a couple of bits of metal, they're held together with bent tabs. Using a screwdriver and wire strippers, I hammered the case around the tabs and it stopped being rattly.

While I had the soldering iron warm, I figured I could have a go at remaking the rear demist switch backlight. I got some wire from some spare car bits as it's thinner than my usual ones (and space in there is tight).

Feed wires cleaned up and fed through the blank plug holes.

Final test to see that I've got the polarity right (careful not to let the two wires touch!).

And soldered in and ready to go.

That's more like it!

Ludicrously bright, I love it. Seems that the slightly bigger SMD T3 bulb on the bottom is slightly at risk of popping out if the button is pressed hard, the existing one got a little chewed up so I put a new one in.

Exhaust smoke/steam finally coming from behind the car, not the rear right wheel. Cool photo. The car sounds nice now. Fully stock exhaust system (in good shape) but minus the resonator box. Definitely an acceptable level of volume but with a slight purr not like before. I would assume that the gas flow is better compared to the normal stock boxes.

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Yesterday I took some spare headlights with me to my friends. These lights are one of my 3 current sets, but the glass is a bit damaged and so is the plastic lip near the glass. There's a crack in the right one too, so I'm just using these temporarily.
I had a little problem with the right headlight though. The lights are held in place in 4 places. One little plastic clip in the lower outside corner (which usually breaks, so don't worry about that one). Then there's a bolt on the top. Then there are two studs on the inside with nuts holding them in.
Those studs both came out of the light and were stuck to the car.
The lower one didn't matter as the temporary light is missing its stud. But the top one was in the way with the one on the replacement light. I couldn't get it off.

So, I had to put the original light on the right. At least the right one isn't the one that's pointing wrongly. Though the entire light on the right is misaligned. From bending the stud/body.


Corner lights / indicators aren't even the same colour.

Next day... What a sight. Mismatched lights, flappy dangly thing, oil on the ground...

This time I had my molegrips.

Got it out! But... the nut was still attached. The nut actually made its way out through the hole. Hmm...

So, got the headlights changed out. It looks much nicer even though they're completely stock.
My yellow foglight bulbs arrived too! So I got one in for comparison..:

And the other! I wasn't sure if I'd like it, but actually, I really do! Also the orange lenses on the headlights make the corner lights a very deep orange. Rather than a yellow-orange.

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Extra photo from last night. The camera doesn't get the colour right. It's actually a really deep yellow. I kinda really like it. I wasn't sure if I would (in fact I thought I probably wouldn't).

Today, I finally cracked out the old summer wheels. It was a really dry day today and was quite hot. So it seemed perfect (it was like a monsoon tonight on the way home!).
The perspective of this shot makes the wheels look the same, but of course the SRi is 14" and the GTi is 15". I'm going from one extreme to another with the tyre sizes here. The snow tyres are 195/60 I think, and the summer tyres are 155/55, I think.

Look at that ridiculous difference. 155 on the left, 195 on the right (with 0.5" wider wheel).
The difference in tread pattern is crazy too. And not that you can tell in the photos, the compound is so different. The summer tyres are quite hard, and the snow ones are super soft. You can literally squeeze the blocks.

The front wheels had rubbed into the body a bit. Very clean rub considering this was before I cleaned it up. I sprayed over it with underseal.

Oh man. The fitment looks ridiculous.

For the first time on this car I took off the drums to clean them up and see where the shoes are wear-wise.
They've got a reasonable amount of material left on them, and this side even had some colourful springs.
I emptied them out from brake dust and rust, so they should perform a bit better now. The other side was difficult to get off, and the drum was very very crusty, so new drums would be a cool idea some time. I would avoid changing the shoes as it's so difficult. That's the main reason I want a disk axle. That and they look really cool.

I'm trying something new regarding wheel fitment now. In the past I've used wheel spacers on the rear wheels. They're maybe 7 or 8mm (I should measure them). Now I'm trying them out on the front too. It might look a litte weird compared to the back, but I'm curious to know how it changes the handling.
The stock headlights make this look like a totally different car.
I really want a new set in perfect condition that I can put the black inserts into (or make new ones).

Thought that maybe the sunny(ish) day would show the foglight colour a bit better. I guess it's closer now but still a bit pale.

I'm not sure if I showed off my MCM merch I got at Christmas. I haven't used any yet. Not sure what I'll do with the sticker yet.

With the summer wheels on, on go the dustcaps. They look great. A nice subtle mod.

Even though the fitment isn't great, the look quickly grows on me. Plus it's just worth it for the performance of the thin, stretched tyres.
Also now there's no tyre rubbing at all, very functional.

I'm getting there. Slowly. But it's coming along.
By Japfest I hope the car is in the same state that it was at JAE. Or at least close.

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So, whenever it's wet outside I get these big rainbow puddles when I stop. It's not a massvie leak but it's built up over the gearbox cross-brace and when it gets wet it all kinda deposits on the floor and makes it look like I've got a hole in my sump or something.

Ignoring that for now though, I'm still super happy about switching to these smaller tyres. Not only does the car corner much much sharper, but the much smaller radius means the car accellerates so much better. They've still got a good amount of tread on them, but the rear ones are wearing thin now.

Nice, managed to get quite a few miles out of this tank. If we use 200 as the general target, then account for the +13% read due to the wheels/tyres, that puts this at about 236 miles.

I had an hour to spare, so I washed the car. Properly, finally. It's been filthy and coated in grease and oil for like 4 months now.

I even washed the engine bay. Hopefully now I'll see the sources of the oil leaks much easier.

Nice, that's more like it! Just need the new headlights and then we're back on track. I also cleaned up the interior over the weekend, and will hopefully finish that soon.

I even cleaned to the lowest points of the bumpers and sills. Usually I don't because it really dirties up the cloth.

When I got to my friend's house, I had a go with his "whizzer".

I managed to polish up the car in no time, with not much effort.

I did have to buff it off manually though as the cloth on the "whizzer" dirtied up quite fast. Despite just cleaning the car quite thoroughly.

Meanwhile, Eddie cleaned his car with that same friend's bucket and sponge.

I like this photo.

I added some touch-up paint all around the car as the thorough wash left a lot of unpainted spots. Just as I was going to leave I noticed that my front right indicator broke. The bulb looks fine but it won't light (the photo is with the corner lights on).
Still the fogs look more white than yellow.

Back home, replaced the bulb, and noted down where oil leaks were coming from. Then I thought "screw it" and got the wax out. After all, I polished off whatever wax might have been left on there.

And there we go. Back to shiny! I even waxed on the upper half of the bumpers, which I usually miss.

That looks awesome. Just need the headlights.


I really really really hope Japfest doesn't get cancelled.

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A singular bulb arrived in the post. I was lucky enough to find this one and only bid £0.02 on it, with free postage. I ended up winning on that bid. This T5 has 3 SMD chips on the end as opposed to the usual one.

The existing bulb in the LCD screen deteriorated as I pulled it out. That's weird, I wonder if it overheated (brown colour) and started to fall apart that way?

I put it in the LCD screen as otherwise it'd be uneven somewhere else. It looks better in daylight! A bit brighter perhaps, but a more even spread of light. Very nice. I knew it wouldn't look right in the photo. Just imagine a crisp, solid white background despite it being bright outside.
It turns out that during night time, it is a little ridiculous.
I'll change it some time, but for now I kinda like it in a silly way. I actually want to overhaul the entire backlighting system on the gauges.

Quick photoshoot with some friends, both of which have purchased the wrong car. The far right one owned that red second facelift that got scrapped after receiving a small dent. It's my life goal to convince him to come back to the good side.

He got this nice shot of my car with his phone, the colour is more accurate.

Today, I read that distributor engines have two slightly longer bolts on the cam cover, at the distributor. This looked like a minor oil leak area, so I opened up the cabrio to steal some bolts.
However, it seemed as if all of the cam cover bolts are the same length, as like on coilpack engines. So I'm not sure what to think about that.
While I was intending to steal parts, though, I suddenly realised that the cabrio has the exact oil pipe that I needed... (these differ on engines)

Old one off, with the tape removed (it wasn't doing so well holding the oil pressure). You can more easily see the two holes.

And the new one in. That there is a genuine JDM oil pipe, nice. From a cabriolet too. I noticed the oil in the pipes was a little mucky, but an oil change is on the list of things to do. I cleaned up the oil in the whole area too to help see if any more leaking was happening. And just to clean it up.

In fact I cleaned up a lot of the engine bay. It's not visible on the photo, but I cleaned the inside of the bonnet as it was covered in oil splatters. I even cleaned the engine belts, properly.
A quick topup of water in the radiator was more required than I had thought, but there weren't any heat problems. Guess I'll take the water pump from my spare engine some time soon as my existing one is leaking a little.

Yes, it was raining. But the wax is making the droplets fall right off of the car, it's beautiful.

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I finished work early today, and it was sunny! So I did some car stuff.
I found out that the different bonnet release latch on the cabrio just turns out to be an extension on what we got in Europe. It could be removed and added to a normal car. Though, I'm not sure if there's much point.

Finally able to air out the cabrio properly! It was going quite swampy in there.

I noticed something that made me a bit jealous on the cabrio. Other than a lockable glovebox, it has a panel above it to stop things from getting launched out of the glovebox and behind the dash, something that happens to mine occasionally!

I figured I may as well put my spare coolant expansion tank in my car, as someone broke my old one (don't ever ever ever touch it!). I didn't realise they had different caps. I ended up using the one on the right that was already on the car, after cleaning it up a bit more.

I figured I may as well tackle the side indicator situation. I got these aftermarket ones from Taiwan years ago. They're good, but they come with plugs that don't fit Euro K11s. So I used the existing plug and wrapped it in tape. I also painted a bulb orange. These fill with water and get gross and green, and just look awful and dim. I made them look better when I put them on my existing car by bleaching them, but I didn't have any.
When I removed them, one had a broken LED, and I broke one on the other one when taking it off. For now I'm not going to use the LEDs as I've run out.
In the end I decided to split them. They weren't even holding water around the edges and the green stuff was deep in the corners.
That's aftermarket quality, but they were cheap.
I took them inside and washed them. I noticed that the reflectors may well have been a slight silver colour once but were now white.

To fit the plugs that they came with (to keep things watertight), I pulled apart a spare plug in my garage and used the bare pins to go directly onto the light plug. I actually used the last of my solder doing these. The last few milimetres just kinda got sucked in to the wire.

I gave the reflectors some reflective paint. Didn't have any lacquer it seems, but from what I've seen in the past, this chrome paint looks better without it anyway.

Did a little test, this time with actual orange bulbs and not crumbly painted ones.

Woah, that's so much brighter than before!

Since I wasn't using the LEDs and wanted it water-tight, I glued over the LED holes.
I also superglued the lens on this one but after taking the photo it just fell off again.

I had to hot glue the lenses back on, which is a shame as they're messy now. But this should hold, and from afar they don't look too bad.

And now for the test, look at that! Brilliant. In fact I had a look at the cabrio clear indicators, the bulb sits way further deep inside the unit compared to this. It's better on these ones as the bulb is more exposed.

Very good!



I forgot to take pictures until now, earlier I cleaned the door jambs up (it does make a difference having those clean), and I also tightened the bolts holding the dash in place. The dash had been buzzing and it was annoying. Pushing it inwards made it stop, so hopefully tightening it up like this helped.

Seriously happy with the light refurbishment.

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Thanks, laptop, for going back and losing all of the text I just wrote!
Because of this there may be less text than planned...

Gave my car a quick rinse with some soap a few days ago.



Another day, the new AC switch backlights arrived. Time to fit these chunky bois in.

Had to sand it down, like last time, for it to fit.
It turns out, the problem last time was to do with the cap. The two hooks that hold it in place are not quite the right shape. So this time I cut them a bit more to the right shape and forced it in.

Works great again. If the cap fails later, I have more bulbs I can put in. I'll try to take the cap off of an incandescent one and fit it to the LED one, then it should fit perfectly.

Such a nice change. It looks quite white in photos, but in reality it's a really solid blue. And it's even visible on a sunny day.

So, today I decided to swap the Cabrio wheels and mine over. I've got an MOT test tomorrow morning, and one of my Nankangs is a little low on tread on one side (damn, I really should have gotten an alignment before fitting those!).
Since I gave Eddie back almost all of his stuff, I had to use my crappy old jack. And my jack stands were missing. So I had to come up with a plan to swap all 8 wheels over.
I came up with a sequence:
•Jack up Cabrio
•Take Cabrio wheel off
•Fit a steelie
•Drop Cabrio
•Jack up my car
•Take off SRi wheel
•Fit Cabrio wheel
•Drop my car
•Jack up Cabrio
•Take off steelie
•Fit SRi wheel
•Drop Cabrio.
Repeat four times. It was quite tedious.
Since I didn't have Eddie's breaker bar either, I went back to the classic days of standing on the wheel nut wrench. Got a cool high up photo while standing on a particularly tight one. Ignore the white sunroof seal, it's got wax in it.

The rear drum of the Cabrio. Different drum. Too bad it's all rusty back here. It's got a rear anti-roll bar too which is cool.

One wheel done, the car is pointing slightly down where the front wheel is smaller.

Front brake of the Cabrio. A bit crusty, but a vented disk, and some ABS stuff.

This is how the Cabrio looks on steelies. A slightly flat one, that is.

Both 14" wheels, I think both are 5.5" wide. Offset may be a little different but that could just be in the shape. Quite different tyres though. The ones on the left are 175/65, which is fairly chunky, Especially compared to the 155/55 on the right.

They're definitely an all-season tread pattern, and the compound is quite soft. They're a bit wide and baloon-y, so I'm expecting to lose a lot of tightness in the corners.

One side swapped on the Cabrio. Bear in mind it doesn't have lowering springs or spacers.

Once the Cabrio wheels were on, I had to give them some air. They were all at around 25PSI. I upped them to 36/35PSI.

I noticed one of the front foglight bulbs was sitting way off. Remembering the old set and how they melted a bit with one bulb too close to the reflector, I fixed it.
I also had a look online before doing so to see if I could use the yellow bulbs for the MOT. It seems as if they aren't tested at all on the MOT test. And it also seems that they can be white or yellow for road use, so that's good.

There we go then. Gave it a quick wash again as it had gotten really dusty!

Moved the Cabrio forward to get some more room. These wheels and tyres definitely have a better fitment to the old ones. Though, the car is now sitting a little higher.

I have gotten myself a new preface boot handle. This one is in almost perfect condition, so it shouldn't poke out. So I started to paint it. This time instead of taping over the seals around the outside, I pulled the top one off. It's plastic and glued in. The 3 bottom seals are foam, and too hard to remove without breaking, so I just painted over them.

There's also a mod I've been considering for ages. It's stupid and pointless, but maybe I'll do it anyway just for fun.

I painted it.

Went to go and get fuel as it was empty, and the battery was getting weak. The colour of the new wheels really matches the newly refurbished side indicators. They're also really clean. Too bad they're curbed a bit.

Light test ahead of tomorrows MOT test. This is one of the uses of the brakelight lock switch!

I'm liking these wheels. I gave them a quick go on a windy back road, as predicted the cornering sharpness is nowhere near as good, but these are still better than big fat winter tyres.

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Thanks. Looks like you and nissan boy both saw it before I was done writing the text in though!
Lol, ATM FB and MSc arnt working right

Tyres I run mine at 34 front 30 rear on little bigger but softer build tyres
Give it ago on the bigger as in mine it handles really well, and can get thrown about like no one's business on the road roads , 195/50/15 toyos struggled to keep up in the warm dry ,

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Never got along with toyos never found em to perform like their reputation says, and they use old yokahama tread patterns from like 2002 lol
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Unfortunately, the MOT test didn't go well.
So, the same day, I bought some new disks, as one was bad. Got a discount of ~52% using Honey online! So these were £18 for the pair, win.

Back to a graveyard of K11s (one more off-shot).

Look at how good that looks! I can't get over how cool that is. So fresh!

With the wheel on.

That looks great! We also adjusted the rear brakes and grinded the inside of the drums so they were nice and flat.

We used some gasket sealant on the timing cover (it was totally missing its seal) and on the cam cover, as it was still leaking. I'll buy a new one some time, when I paint it. I also found the one hex bolt that was missing for months, in some trousers I was binning!

Had to tidy up some of the wires in the engine bay. Decided to flex the MCM merch from the other side of the world.

Alright! Ready for a retest tomorrow morning. Should be fine this time.

Side shot with the Si wheels.

Axles are quite heavy! This one has an anti-roll bar!

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How's that for fitment then?


While I was cleaning off the oil deposits, I found where the oil was coming from near the distributor! I mean, it was coming from the bad gasket too, but there's a crack here! I thought I saw it when I was making the last post on here last night. It was confirmed when I was spraying water over this area with the engine on. The water was getting spat back out from the crack.
Some gasket sealant would probably be a good temporary fix, but that's not at my place. I might even consider using some of the adhesive I stuck my spoilers on with. Since I'm going to get a new cam cover some time anyway.
I actually pulled off the cam cover breather in hopes that it'd relax some of the pressure at the crack, but all that did was coat my bonnet in oil! There's actually quite a lot of oil coming from the breather. I'm going to buy a fitment to go into the air intake and pipe it to that, as it's supposed to be. I guess I'll stick some sponge inline in the hose to stop loads of oil going in the air intake.

Here we are again, the next morning. Feeling more confident than last time.
We passed! Hooray!

Of course, on the way home from the MOT test, my throttle cable fell out of the guide. Totally lost throttle this time. I had just been faffing with it. Every time I fiddle with it, it falls off.
Luckily I brought the spanner with me, so I tightened it down properly here. Hopefully it's adjusted right now.

I've been thinking about ways to discharge static electricity from the chassis. That's why all that dust was sticking to it. And I'm getting electrocuted every time I touch it, which is really not nice. Might try just dangling an exposed wire under the car.

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More screwing around with this spare AC fan I have. Now it's red. It's high temperature red, mostly because that's all I had.

I sanded the boot handle until it was starting to shine a bit. I really need new sandpaper, this sheet was pretty ineffective. I last bought sandpaper like 4 years ago.
I polished it a bit too.

I figured I may as well put some preventative glue on the back of the handle, to strengthen it up a little. Actually, one of them had some glue on it already, so it's not totally 100% condition.

And then I chucked on some KY5 Techno Grey.

Back inside, I decided to do a little repair on the G# model. The wraparound spoiler had fallen off last year, I was sick of seeing it separated so I put some glue on it and stuck it back on. Hopefully it holds. The paint doesn't go well with the glue.

I also want to build the Nismo preface too. But I want to do some cool mods, such as lower it, get some custom wheels, and custom plates. May also consider working lights, but not sure.

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The fan is looking great!

And now I present to you:
The most useless mod I've done.
Actually, that may not be true. After all, we modify our cars because it's fun. I had fun doing this, and I like the look of it. It's kinda silly but kinda cool too.
Actually, realistically, there is supposed to be a blanking plate covering this gap. Presumably to stop the exhaust from cooling down when the air comes in through the grille. Of course, the exhaust needs to run as hot as possible to speed up gas flow, and I believe to make the catalyst more efficient. So this fan is filling the gap where that panel is missing.
On top of that, should my car get hot some day, in a hot summer, sitting in traffic, this might actually contribute just a tiny teeny bit to cooling it. It's even high-temp paint, so it shouldn't flake off with heat.

But really, it looks neat. I wired it up with the radiator fan, so they should both come on at temperature. I'll clean up the radiator fan some time so the yellow shows a bit better.

I had to redesign the horn wires again. They broke once again! I must be doing my crimping wrong. I couldn't even get the right one off, the bolt is spinning but nothing's happening. The other one was one rusty bolt.

I had to ground the horns elsewhere due to the fan being in the way. I also reattached the fan plug (I chopped it off last night), so it can be removed easier.

Some more paint on the new boot handle, looking good.

I'm going to cut this hose and fit it into the intake pipe. That's how it's supposed to be anyway. It's supposed to relieve the engine of crankcase pressure. I'll need to fit some foam or something into the pipe to limit the oil transfer, as quite a lot of oil makes its way out from here. And in the stock setup, the pipe leads to some sponge, then the air filter.
I might need to look into using an oil catch can. Gonna do some research.

I took these pictures for my own reference, but may as well put them up here. The external diameter of the oil pipes. Roughly.

And the rough internal diameter. This is about 0.6 inches.

I can't test the fans yet, for a couple of reasons. One being that the fan doesn't seem to come on when idling anyway, it doesn't get hot enough! The second, and possibly bigger reason, is that the crack is going to let out a lot of oil.
Good news is, I think that's the last of the oil leaks!

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just ran mine up to temp today to hear the new pipe, took me 40 mins and the last 10 were at about 3k rpm before it got enough heat to put the fan on, I was worried for a while as the temp just sat in the middle but it did eventually creep up lol
And there is no such thing as a pointless mod...well maybe welding a turbo to the end of the tailpipe but other than that....
Id your having cooling issues run a 1.3 or auto rad?,
Never had a issue on mine even when it had a 1ltr rad at one point, find it rare for the fan to com on and a run a board at the bottom of the rad specially in cooler weather
Thermostat is a fairly new oem nissan just seen to be a thing with it ,
Coil packs seen to warm quicker tho

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Id your having cooling issues run a 1.3 or auto rad?,
Never had a issue on mine even when it had a 1ltr rad at one point, find it rare for the fan to com on and a run a board at the bottom of the rad specially in cooler weather
Thermostat is a fairly new oem nissan just seen to be a thing with it ,
Coil packs seen to warm quicker tho

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I'm not having any problems with cooling. The radiator is a preface one, they're a bit better made. The yellow fan ones.
Looks amazing with new discs and them wheels one. I really really like the look of it for some reason. I have 3 more Si alloys if i find one i will have a full set. If i don't ...sell them...why not. Better have spare if you have a set

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Paint is looking good on the new boot handle. I'm going to go over it once more to cover over some patches where I slowed down and it looks a bit off. Painting with metallic paint is annoying. This time I'm going to put lots of lacquer on, and polish it down well. Might even get some sandpaper.

Found a use for some old wheel weights, propping it up so I can paint it better!

Today, I had to drive to work despite the oil leak problem. I stuffed a used dash cloth over the crack at the start of both journeys.
I forgot to mention, when I got the brakes sorted, I got myself a new badge. This one is from the boot of a late prefacelift (possibly '96 judging by the marking on the back).
I was curious to see how it compares to the first facelift bonnet badge.
Guess what? Turns out it's even smaller! Not by a lot, but still. So I'm going to be putting this one on some time. I'll just have to really tidy up the existing badge area as I superglued it on. It'll also need a touch up of black paint in the lettering.
So if you're going to put a first facelift badge on your second facelift, wait! Put a preface boot badge on instead!

Unlike the second facelift boot badge, this one has the alignment bits. The only problem is, the thin one and thick one are reversed on this, compared to the others. So I'll have to cut down the sides of the thick one to fit it.

Back home, oil dripping out, but I noticed that the new fan is working alongside the other one!

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Yesterday, the oil catch can arrived! It's really nicely made despite being so cheap. The two screw-in hose attachments are plastic though. It came with two strange screws that had O-rings, I'm guessing to reduce vibrations or something.

The can can be unscrewed and emptied, or a large hex grub screw on the bottom can be removed to empty it.
Inside, there's a filter for the oil and a baffle. Looks like a cheap design but hopefully effective.

I bought some oil hoses once I had the measurements.


Later, I figured I may as well see where it can be fitted. First of all, I wanted to use standard bolts found all over the car, so I had to drill the bracket holes a bit bigger. A vice would have made this a lot easier. I have one, it's just not fitted to the desk.

I then realised that two 10mm bolts would not fit in there. In fact, even with one bolt, there was a clearance issue. Had to find a bolt without the double washer thing.

The original plan was to attach it behind the intake. I'd drill a hole in the firewall and attach a rivnut. But I ended up using an existing hole with thread. I think this was from the original intake pipe.

While I was attaching the can, I realised, I can rotate it. So I rotated it to face the engine, as the hose I bought isn't particularly long.

There we go! So, from the 90° hose from the cam cover, a smaller hose (outer diameter is the same as the large one's inner diameter) will feed into that with a clamp or two, which will go to the catch can, then another small hose will go out from the catch can into the intake. I'll now tap into the intake just behind the filter, which means I'll need only a little hose, and it'll be easier to add, being right near an open end.

Onto something else, I decided to get on with the badge. Stupid me thought I'd never remove the first facelift badge, so it was glued on with superglue. This is a really tough thing to remove.

Here's a direct comparison of the badges. Up at the top is the second facelift bonnet badge. It's hideously large.
Next one down is the first facelift bonnet badge. Much nicer size.
Then finally the prefacelift boot badge. What I didn't realise until looking at this photo later, is that the shape and text is a little different on the smallest one. The middle shape is much more straight, and the font, like the one above it, is quite narrow compared to the top one.

I managed to squeeze it on after sanding down the thicker "stick" on the back. It's actually on there really tight, and was difficult to take off. This means no glue is needed this time! Hooray! I'll fill out the thinner "stick" with some blue tack again.

Actually, it seems that the March has the smallest badge too. The one I'm holding up here is the first facelift badge. I later checked that it's the same as the one I'm putting on my car. I wonder if the mounting "sticks" are different, or the bonnet holes are? I also just noticed while writing this, that the grille is a single piece rather than two. Interesting.

Later on, I got some paint out and started to tidy up the ruined paint on the lettering. I had "flat black" from when I made the March model, or Techno Grey touch-up paint from my car. I decided to go with the black.

N I and S first coat done, already looking more fresh.

After two coats, it was looking much better. Some brush strokes can be seen but that's mostly because it was still wet here. Besides, it's so small on the car that any imperfections wouldn't be noticeable anyway.

I got a little carried away and started painting the Nismo preface model!

Today, hopefully, I'll get that nasty glue off of the bonnet and get the badge on.
While I was coating the glue with some chemicals, I noticed that it's used to thin paint too. Which might be the cause of my bonnet having so many chips in it, same thing happened on my old car, around the time I changed the badge. I might need to respray the front of the bonnet.
At least the badge will come off without leaving glue.

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I tried all I could to get the superglue off, including some harsh chemicals.

I even tried scraping it off. In the end, I decided to leave it like this. I think I've worn down the glue at least a bit. And it's not that noticable unless you get really close.

So, there's the new badge! This time held in without glue at all. It might look about the same as the previous one, but it's not quite. It's smaller and more straight.

Today, some stuff arrived! A hose and some gasket sealant. I forgot that the hose was braided! Looks great!

See if you can spot my other hobby in the background.

I learnt last night that someone's gonna give me a new cam cover, complete with bosses welded on for the coilpacks. So bodge time it is! I was actually going to borrow the cabrio's plastic cover and put a bracket over it to try and hold the coilpacks in, but this gasket stuff is actually really good!

While that was setting a bit, I put the pipes in. They look great! And there doesn't seem to be any leaks either. When the engine is running, there's a vacuum from the line out, so that's working. When that fitting arrives I can connect it to the air intake to complete it.

Since this gasket stuff is sticking so well... I wonder...

Hmm. Seems alright. Will report back again.

While I was back here, and had some more nice hose, I replaced the fuel line. The old one was old, and it's good to have fresh lines. That one is the most critical to keep from perishing. Plus it looks great!
As well as that, I removed a lot of pipes and stuff that was back here. It turns out that there was an entire pipe that wasn't connected to anything at all. Now that that's tidied up, it looks much better.
I had to look into the Haynes manual regarding the carbon canister. I found which pipe was from the fuel tank (by smelling them) and figured it could just attach to the valve near the throttle. Normally, the fuel vapours come through that line and go in the carbon can, then they get mixed with air and sent into the intake, I think. Now the vapours will just go into the intake when the valve opens. We'll find out if that's okay or not soon.

Everything back together, and the bay's looking nicer. Just waiting for that fitting now, so I can attach the oil can.

This was the stuff I removed from the engine bay.

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After a drive, I've noted a few things.
1: The sealant didn't hold the coilpack. Ah well, it doesn't normally pop out enough to lose connection and I'll get a new one soon.
2: The sealant might have limited the oil leak but it's not stopped it. As before there's even oil smoke from where it covers the exhaust.
3: That valve I was messing with. It should not be covered! The car ran like crap and kept stalling. Also, the fuel gauge, despite filling right up, only read to 2/3. When I pulled the pipe out (while it was idling) the car instantly got better, and the return journey had great power. Also the fuel gauge started climbing (Noticed the tank was very pressurised when I fuelled up, hissed very loudly when opening the cap).
When I got home, before turning off the engine, I had another look. As soon as I connected the fuel vapour line, it hesitated and nearly stalled. In fact, I then noticed that there was a hissing sound. The valve is pulling air hard and covering it both sucked my thumb in and nearly stalled the engine again.
I'm wondering if I should instead attach it to the air intake... or just leave it open.
I guess really now it's just a valve that opens to the intake once the engine is at operating temperature. Maybe I should disconnect the valve.
Also the fuel tank should probably have a pressure relief. It's not like it's all going to evapourate out of the pipe anyway, there is a valve closer to the tank according to the diagram.
Still adding lacquer to the boot handle. I had to add a bit more KY5 along the bottom as it hadn't really covered it all down there.

It was so shiny today that the plate was dazzling!

The new pipe adaptor arrived today. I've been waiting for this. Originally I was just going to attach the breather pipe to the intake but I went and got the catch can instead, so I needed a smaller adaptor. The large one can be used in the future.

Later on, the new cam cover gasket arrived too! It was twisted in the packaging, which isn't a good sign (from experience). It looks like it's in good shape regardless, though. It feels weird to get a distributor gasket. I feel like I've got the wrong one.

So, time to fit the last pipe for the catch can! I drilled into the intake pipe at the end. It's actually a really hard plastic. It was a bit sloppy but the adaptor covered up the clumsiness. Meanwhile, the Cabrio got some attention.

Not bad!

I've been saving this new air filter. Not quite sure what for, I guess for when the car is back to decent condition. But whatever, let's use it now.

Open ended cones are the best cones.

It's such a bright red. I love new filters!


And it's in. The fitting looks good.

And there we go! The oil catch can is now fully installed. It looks great, especially with those braided hoses.

Really happy with this setup.


I've been thinking about what I'm going to do with that valve that opens up to the intake manifold. I almost got another fitting to attach it to the intake pipe, but in the end I bought a hose adaptor (8mm-12mm) and got a tiny filter. I've put the rest of the braided pipe I bought on it for now.
The filter I bought is a genuine RamAir filter, which is kinda cool.
I might do something more creative in the end, but for now it'll do.

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I hate to say it but I think you've got your catch can plumbed to the wrong places, the hose going from the cam cover to the inlet tract after the air filter is to let (clean filtered) air into the top of the engine not remove it from the engine.
The one you want is from the pcv valve on the side of the cam cover at the other end going to the inlet manifold and is therefore subject to vacuum and will suck the crank case vapours pout and burn them in the engine.
I hate to say it but I think you've got your catch can plumbed to the wrong places, the hose going from the cam cover to the inlet tract after the air filter is to let (clean filtered) air into the top of the engine not remove it from the engine.
The one you want is from the pcv valve on the side of the cam cover at the other end going to the inlet manifold and is therefore subject to vacuum and will suck the crank case vapours pout and burn them in the engine.

Hmm, will look into it, though this setup isn't much different to the stock one.
I'll do some more research.
The 8mm to 12mm adaptor arrived. Funnily enough the filter is actually 13mm and the pipe is 9mm, but these'll be held on with clips.

I swapped my rear wiper arm for a prefacelift one! Now that looks much more smart. Metal too, no plastic rubbish. Matches the front ones now. It's quite a small blade though, 16" maybe. It's a different shape and doesn't sit as far out, so a bigger blade would be quite cool.

Filter added to the carbon can valve.

I decided to tuck it upwards to keep it away from oil and dirt. Maybe the air is more fresh up there too.

Time for a little service. The main plan was to get a new cam cover made, but it didn't happen. So I just coated the crack with even more sealant.

New oil filter, and the magnetic sump plug can now go on. This engine's needed an oil change for a while.

There we go. Soon the final oil leak will be sorted, and I can clean the bottom of the engine and the surrounding area, so it's not so oily.

While I was here... I got a rear bumper from a second facelift. But not just any second-face, it's from Cassie!
Now, since I chopped holes in the bottom for the rear foggies, the bottom was kinda ruined. This also meant it wasn't worth selling.
Now, for the future track car build, I wanted to have a chopped rear bumper. So, I made good use of Cassie's old one. I'll go over it again with the dremel at home, then some sandpaper. The idea I have is to smooth off the bump strips, and paint it black.

Test fit on a car, other than it being wonky due to the crash bar being bent. Looks cool, I like it.

Today, some sandpaper arrived! 1000, 2000, 3000, 5000 and 7000. First I worked on the new boot handle, then the spoiler, which was really rough.

Came out pretty good! The paint is bad in the first place (big things, with metallic paint from a can are hard). But it's much less rough now.

Time to fit the new boot handle. I nearly forgot the seal around the top! Finally finished my superglue off.

Looks pretty neat under there, all tabs are good with some reinforcing glue.

I also put a spare old wiper blade on the rear. It's like 20" I think. It wipes all the way up to the brake light and just misses the rear washer jet. It tucks under the spoiler really well.

The handle is held on tight, but I'm going to be gentle with it. Spoiler looks better and the wiper arm and blade is cool.


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