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Engine Refitting: 300ZX Manual Twin Turbo, RHD

08/06/2013 11:02 AM
Mike Duffy

I wrote these guides for my own use when I owned my 300ZX. I had the engine out of it so many times that I wanted a detailed guide to every step of the process so I didn't have to think about anything whilst taking it out or putting it in, and to make sure I wasn't going to miss anything. I got the whole process down to about 8 hours for removal or refitting using these guides.

The engine removal guide is located here: 300ZX Engine Removal

Engine Components
Engine Components (from Nissan Workshop Manual)
  1. Attach the engine slingers and lift the engine so the stand is just clear of the ground.
  2. Detach the engine stand from the engine.
  3. Bolt on the flywheel. You will have to find some way of chocking the flywheel while you remove the bolts (strong flat screwdriver wedged in the flywheel teeth worked for me, but be careful not to damage the teeth).
  4. Attach the clutch using a suitable clutch alignment tool. If you don't get this 100% right, you will have a lot of difficulty attaching the gearbox.
  5. Remove the bonnet if it has been reattached since removing the engine.
  6. Manoeuvre the crane so the engine is positioned above the engine bay.
  7. Slowly lower the engine back into position. Lower the engine slowly, taking great care not to make contact with any of the items tied to one side, brake lines, steering column, etc. Take time to walk around the car and check all sides of the engine every few inches.
  8. Once the engine has neared its mounting locations, now is a good time to reattach the following items:
    • Heater matrix hoses (2)
    • The main live cable going to the starter is secured to the block at the back.
    • The earth strap is secured to the block at the back.
    • The two hard to reach electrical connections at the rear of the plenum on the passenger side (AAC and FICD valves).
  9. Lower the engine the remainder of the way into the engine mount locations.
  10. You can now reattach the bonnet. Don't forget to reconnect the windscreen washer tube.
  11. Remove the engine slingers and replace the original bolts.
  12. Reattach the engine mount bolts.
  13. The gearbox now needs reconnecting to the engine. This can be quite a tricky operation as the box needs to be perfectly lined up with the engine to allow the input shaft to slide correctly through the clutch plate and pilot bushing. This can be aided by having a selection of bolts available cut to a variety of sizes to help guide the box on. These bolts are inserted into the holes on either side of the box, half way up. Once a suitable size has been found, gradually tighten the bolts to pull the box towards the engine. While doing this, check that the clearance between the gearbox and the engine stays the same at the top as at the bottom. Use the transmission jack to adjust the clearance. Once the bolt won't go any further, use a smaller bolt until the gearbox is right up against the engine. Keep checking the clearance at the top and bottom and use the jack to make continuous adjustments to keep it the same. Once the bell housing has been brought flush with the engine, reattach all the bolts.
    Transmission Bell Housing Bolts
    Transmission bell housing bolts
  14. Raise the gearbox to bring the rear engine/gearbox mount up into position. Reattach the bolts. The transmission jack can now be removed.
    Rear Engine Mount
    Rear engine mount
  15. Reattach the selection mechanism bracket and the bolt holding the gear stick to the selection mechanism.
    Gearbox Selection Mechanism
    Gearbox selection mechanism
  16. Reattach the clutch slave cylinder.
  17. Reattach the starter motor and reconnect the electrical connections to it.
  18. Reconnect the oil cooler hoses on the driver side.
  19. Reconnect the two vacuum hoses at the side of the plenum, near the back on the passenger side.
    Vacuum Hoses
    Vacuum hoses at rear of plenum (passenger side)
  20. Reconnect the vacuum hose underneath the rear of the passenger side throttle body.
  21. Reconnect the vacuum hose underneath the front of the passenger side throttle body.
    Vacuum Hose
    Vacuum hose at rear of passenger side throttle body
  22. Reconnect the vacuum hose underneath the rear of the plenum on the driver side that goes to the EGR system.
  23. Reattach the bracket that runs down the driver side of the plenum to carry the two vacuum connections. Reconnect the lower of the two vacuum hoses underneath the driver side throttle body. Reconnect the two vacuum hoses at the rear of these pipes.
    Vacuum Hoses at Rear
    Vacuum hoses at rear
    Vacuum Hose at Front
    Vacuum hose at front
  24. Reattach the wiring harness on top of the previous vacuum pipes.
    Waring Harness
    Wiring harness attached to plenum
  25. Bolt on the boost control solenoids.
  26. Reconnect the black plastic induction pipes going from the air intake to the turbo inlets. Also, fit the PCV hoses back to these pipes at the same time.
  27. Reconnect the black metal boost pipes to the other side of the turbo compressors.
  28. Reconnect the following electrical connections:
    • Throttle position sensor (2)
    • Boost control solenoids (one either side)
    • Fuel injectors (6)
    • Coil packs(6)
    • Earth connections to the plenum (2 along back of plenum)
    • Fuel temperature (near centre of plenum)
    • O2 sensor connectors coming up to the top of the engine from the turbo down-pipes (2)
    • Air regulator valve (passenger side, rear of plenum)
    • Detonation sensor coming up to the top of the engine from underneath the centre of the plenum
    • Valve timing control solenoid valves (one either side, cables coming up from back of inlet camshafts)
    • Water temperature sensors (2 in the water pipe at the front of the engine)
    • Crank angle sensor
    • Power transistor unit
  29. Reconnect the small vacuum hoses underneath the intercooler pipes at the front. The ones that go to the boost control solenoids.
  30. Reattach the fuel hoses and bolt onto the plenum.
  31. Reattach the throttle cables (pedal and cruise control).
  32. Reattach the idle tube to the hose going to the passenger side turbo inlet.
  33. Reattach the balance bar, reusing the old gaskets if undamaged.
  34. Reconnect the vacuum hose to the fuel regulator on the passenger side.
  35. Reconnect the six vacuum pipes to the balance bar and the vacuum pipe going from the plenum to the clutch servo just behind the balance bar on the driver side. The balance bar connections are four pipes on the driver side, one in the middle at the back for the idle control and one on the passenger side at the back.
    Vacuum Pipes
    Four vacuum pipes on driver side plenum and clutch servo pipe behind
  36. Refit the Nissan cover to the top of the engine.
  37. Refit the water pump pulley to the water pump studs.
  38. Locate the alternator back in position and insert the pivot bolt (remember there is a nut to go at the rear).
    Pivot Bolt and Tensioner
    Pivot bolt and tensioner
  39. Fit a new belt, reconnect the tensioner and adjust the tension. Tighten the pivot bolt when finished. The belt goes around the water pump pulley, the alternator and the inside track of the crank pulley.
  40. Locate the air conditioning compressor in place and refit the bolts (it's probably best to leave off the difficult rear one).
    Bottom Bolts and Tensioner
    Bottom bolts and tensioner
  41. Fit a new belt and adjust the tension using the separate tensioner. The belt goes around the air conditioning compressor, the tensioner pulley and the middle track of the crankshaft pulley.
  42. Locate the power steering pump in place and reattach the tensioner assembly. Secure the pump loosely with the pivot bolt.
    Power Steering Pivot Bolt
    Power steering pivot bolt
  43. Fit a new belt and adjust the tension. The pivot bolt needs to be tightened through one of the holes in the PS pump when finished. The belt is located around the PS pump and the outer track of the crankshaft pulley.
  44. Refit the fan and viscous coupling together.
  45. Put the radiator back in position and reattach the retaining brackets.
  46. Reattach the radiator overflow pipe to below the filler cap.
  47. Reattach the four big boost hoses at the front of the engine.
  48. Refit the upper and lower radiator hoses.
  49. Refit the upper fan shroud.
  50. Refit the lower fan shroud.
  51. Reconnect the oil pressure sender under the car.
    Oil Pressure Sender
    Oil pressure sender with plug removed (photo taken out of car with sump removed)
  52. Reconnect the front exhaust pipe sections.
  53. Now lower the front of the car to the ground and jack up the rear. Secure the car using axle stands.
  54. Place the propshaft in position and put a jack underneath the centre bearing. Raise the shaft and insert the input shaft into the gearbox. As the shaft nears the car, present the rear to the diff. Fit the shaft according to the marks you made when removing it.
  55. Reattach the centre bearing bolts to secure the shaft. The jack can now be removed.
  56. Reattach the bolts holding the shaft to the prop. You will need the car in gear to tighten each bolt. To make each bolt accessible, take the car out of gear and turn one of the rear wheels.
  57. Refit the exhaust heat shield.
  58. Refit the exhaust rear sections, reattaching them to the CAT sections.
  59. Refit the bracket that goes across the centre of the car underneath the exhaust tubes.
  60. Lower the rear of the car back to the ground as the car needs to be level to check the fluids. However, the gearbox oil also needs to be checked as oil may have been lost. This is easiest done with the front and rear raised slightly. This can be achieved by lowering the rear tires onto wooden blocks. The front can then be jacked and secured at the same level. The oil is checked by removing the plug on the side of the gearbox on the driver's side. Gearbox oil is then added via a long tube and a funnel until oil emerges from the hole.
  61. Refill the radiator with coolant.
  62. Fit a new oil filter and fill the engine with suitable oil.
  63. Refit the battery and reconnect it.
  64. Follow all reasonable guidelines for starting up the engine for the first time, bleeding the coolant system, checking for leaks, etc.