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Old 04-26-2017, 09:02 PM   #1
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Brian's s14

Hey everyone, I'm Brian. I got my 240sx in 2012 when I graduated high school at age 16. It was my first car and I don't plan on getting rid of her anytime soon! I have moved on to a Subaru BRZ as my daily, and the 240 is now enjoying her life in the garage waiting for the weekends. She lived the first 5 years parked in the street at various homes, but I recently bought a house in 2016 so now I have a place to do real work on her! This build will start off with the progress over the "infant" years, and I will update as I start doing the bigger things.

Here is a before/after as of 4/26/2017:


Here is the current spec sheet:

Exterior
  • Staggered 350z anniversary wheels
  • 235/40/18 front, 245/40/18 rear
  • Clear Headlights
  • Clear corner lights
  • Clear side markers
  • OEM Front spoiler/ Rear Spoiler
Interior
  • Aftermarket head unit
  • Bluetooth capability
Engine / driveline
  • Rebuilt stock specs
  • - Arp head studs
  • - Bored 0.020" over
  • - New pistons
  • - FelPro head gasket
  • - Bottom/head rebuilt
  • - Bored block, guidelines installed,pressure checked,resurfaced, valvejob,cleaned block,polish crank, freeze plugs installed were all done by a local shop.
  • 4-2-1 DC Sports header
  • Injen cold air intake
  • Aem air filter
  • Hi-flow cat, 1 deleted from header
  • 2.5 inch cat back exhaust
  • DC Sports strut bar
  • Megan Racing Engine mounts
  • Megan Racing Transmission mount
  • Rebuilt steering rack
  • Aftermarket spark plug wires, maybe NGK?
Suspension
  • SPL Tension Rods @209k
  • SPL Toe Arms @209k
  • SPL Traction Rods @209k
  • SPL RUCAS
  • Tokiko / Skunk2 Lowering spring/shock combo @200k
Brakes
  • SPL Brake Deflectors @209k
  • Hawk HPS Pads
  • High temp brake fluid
Maintenance of note
  • New water pump, thermostat, radiator flush
  • New egr
  • New IACV or Idle Air Control Valve
  • New Sparkplugs @ 200k
  • New Knock Sensor
  • Front end replaced
  • -Bumper, fenders, headlights, side markers, corner lights, new fog lights, new paint.


Pictures of when I bought her in 2012:





Drew this as a representation of what I eventually wanted the car to look like:



After replacing the water pump, thermostat and radiator hoses, a friend of mine helped with an engine rebuild, to stock specs for reliability and uncertainty for the future (still didn't know much about cars at this point but this was a great opportunity to learn.) Here are some pictures of the engine rebuild:











YUCK, tear down:








Sent the pieces to the shop and they came back....Ohh, shiny...








^^^I regret not being able to afford forged internals now a days, oh well. new pistons, old rods.










This will always look like a Stormtrooper to me..



New Engine was put back in, drove like a champ, still is today. All done @ 193k miles btw. Not even a month later, some guy decided to run a red light and swipe the front end on my way home from college. So here's the damage that stayed with the car for while, looks like a real 240 now huh? :






Time for a DC Sports Strut bar! Super beefy, makes the steering nice and tight!




Time to finally get those Nissan 350z Anniversary wheels I drew beforehand!! Paid $400 for them with tires, drove 3 hours to pick up. The guy said he would swap my stocks on so he could drive home and install his mb battle, and the ship the stocks back to me since the had brand new tires on them. Unfortunately he failed to inform me of the curb rash on the wheels despite me asking about it before hand, and I noticed after 2 weeks of driving that the tires each had some kind of nail in it causing the pressures to drop every day... I was waiting on him to ship my stocks back so I could wear the tread out on those until I could afford the tires on the 350z wheels... but he screwed me there too saying he couldnt afford to send the wheels back and he went to a drift even and shredded the new tires up, still refused to send just the wheels. This was my first experience dealing with a fellow 240sx owner. On the bright side, I love the wheels!





More updates to follow...

Last edited by bjreynolds202; 10-17-2017 at 01:23 PM.. Reason: New parts installed
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Old 04-28-2017, 11:24 AM   #2
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You gotta resize some of these photos dude
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Old 04-28-2017, 11:34 AM   #3
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Holy massive pictures batman.

Where in NC you at?
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:05 PM   #4
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Holy massive pictures batman.

Where in NC you at?
Judging by those trees, I would bet somewhere in the 828.
I could be wrong though
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:18 PM   #5
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I'm in the Youngsville, Wake Forest Area, so 919, worked on resizing the pictures, let me know if these are still too big.
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Old 04-28-2017, 12:36 PM   #6
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Hit a dear on my way to the hospital because my girlfriend had to go. Was blinded by a jeep with off road lights and brights blinding me. Couldn't see the deer in time. (Good thing I never repaired the friend end from last time! now I needed to though...)





Can you can see where the deep poop is inside my headlight?




After repairs, replaced the bumper, fenders, repaired the hood, new corner lights, headlights with clear covers, new fog lights.





Replaced the shocks/springs because the car looked like a pogo stick going down the road, tokico/skunk2 combo.
Also replaced the brakes with Hawk HPS pads, new rotors, and higher temp fluid.
Replaced the leaking steering rack.
Replaced a knock sensor and egr, as well as IACV.
Also put in clear side markers and signals to match the rest of the lights.



Before:

After:


Before:

After:


Of course after the full front end being replaced, someone backs into it at my new job as a Web developer/Software engineer... I have bad luck apparently when it comes to other driving around my car.


I bought a house!! I can finally have a garage to put my car in to work on bigger projects!! Super exciting, bought the BRZ for my 21st birthday at this point to take over as my daily driver.










Plenty of room for both cars to open their doors:






Noticed my engine mounts and trans mount were in need of replacement so I got megan racing mounts and now that I have to place to work... I of course, got to work:

Jack point for transmission mount:




driver side mount:




Recent pictures:





Now that the car is visually where I want it, the engine is solid, and I have the income to do actual upgrades I'll go ahead and make a note of my goals. I'll be open to suggestions, advice and warnings along the way.

My brakes are needing replacement so instead of spending 500 dollars to replace the stock stuff, I may as well upgrade them since I can't lock up the tires right now and stopping effort is pretty scary right now.

Brakes - CTS-V Calipers, 350z track rotors, SS Lines, Hawk HPS pads, and the bracket needed for the calipers. I also want to switch to a z32 rear setup, with e brake setup as well, and then go with a z32 Master cylinder.

20 year old rubber hasn't held up too well judging by my mounts, so I intend to go either full SPL arms or VooDoo13 arms. I'd appreciate feedback on the VooDoo13 though since they are about 800 as opposed to SPL's 1000. I will also put in the Energy Suspension bushings while the subframe is out, and swap in the J30 Diff I've had for 2 years.

I have more plans but I expect these to take a few months to finish as I really want to go all out on the rear subframe build.
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Old 04-28-2017, 02:25 PM   #7
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Such a clean starting platform! I started out with a very similar s14, and proceeded to be young and dumb and ruin it. Looking back at old pictures definitely made me realize my mistakes.
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Old 04-30-2017, 03:55 PM   #8
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Figured it wouldn't hurt to change my 20 year old fuel filter and hoses.


Replaced it with a K&N filter.


Removed the gas cap and fuel pump fuse located in the driver side foot well on a s14. Started the car until it died. Cut off the the top hose, cut a new hose to length. Cut the bottom hose off, and had fuel continuously spill out all over the engine bay and driveway despite my collection of rags. Real messy. Cut that hose to length as well, put the new hose and filter back in place. tightened the clamps down.

Haven't driven the car yet since I'm waiting for the fuel to evaporate completely. Wasn't too sure on the best way to get rid of the fuel in that tight area. I nuked it all with brake cleaner since that's what I had on hand. Figuring that if I wait a few hours it will have all evaporated. I will update later on any changes I notice while driving. Not really expecting much to happen though.
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Old 04-30-2017, 06:21 PM   #9
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funny question bro, were you on the way to wake med on Thursday night? Clean car though, good build fellow highschooler in WF with an s14.
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Old 04-30-2017, 07:53 PM   #10
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funny question bro, were you on the way to wake med on Thursday night? Clean car though, good build fellow highschooler in WF with an s14.
Thank you! Trying to keep things simple. Nope I don't drive her at night. Last time I hauled ass to wake med I hit a deer. I went to WF as well! Poat a pic of your 240 if you dont mind. I'd love to see it. I've only seen another white one around here.

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Old 08-09-2017, 12:52 PM   #11
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s14 Got some of my SPL arms in

I finally bought some SPL arms for the rear subframe.
Found a great deal from a great seller: @I6_Power here. So thank you!
I got the RUCA, Toe and Traction arms.

Overview of all:


Ruca:


Toe:


Traction:


I had Circuit sports tension rods before, but I never installed them because they seemed pretty weak and I didn't like the overall quality. I chose SPL due to their great reputation, passion for their products, and they just look incredible and I expect them to perform the same.

Hopefully I will get to install and compare over the weekend.
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Old 08-11-2017, 12:52 PM   #12
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lol @ the dude swiping those wheels from you. Dick move for sure.
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Old 09-08-2017, 12:11 PM   #13
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SPL Arms Installed

I got the SPL arms installed, and got the car aligned the weekend after. It was really out of whack. Driving just 7 miles was nerve racking. Definitely get the car aligned even if you measure the arms to match the stock ones.

20+ years of lacking rubber:


SPL Traction Rods:



SPL RUCAS:


SPL Toe Arms:



SPL Traction Arms Installed:


SPL RUCAS Installed:


All of the arms installed:


Installation was easy, unbolt the two bolts for each arm, take the arm out, measure the new one against stock, put the arm back in, put in the 2 bolts and torque down. And don't drive it until your get an alignment!!

Here is what my alignment looked like beforehand and after. The front's need some work but I have yet to get the SPL Tension rods yet so I will worry about that later.


Driving impressions:
Feels great, got rid of whatever squeaking I had and bounciness the ride had before hand. The rear feels a lot tighter and less spongy and floaty. The front feels mushy in comparison now when it used to be the opposite. Haven't driven the car hard enough to get any better impressions, but its definitely better just to have something that's not that ancient lack of rubber. If anything my ride feels more comfortable and less annoying. No increase of noise yet. I love them so far.

While I was working down there it made me realize how badly I need to upgrade these brakes, and also how heavy those anniversary wheels are!
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Old 09-09-2017, 03:43 AM   #14
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I love how pure and simple this build is.
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Old 09-28-2017, 12:16 PM   #15
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S14 SPL Tension Rods (Offset)

Ordered and received my s14 offset Tension Rods.




They look fantastic, very high quality parts from SPL.

Hoping to get the brake deflectors for my birthday and if not, then I'll order them the day after.
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:53 PM   #16
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This build makes me want to start over on a virgin S chassis...
Man if I could only go back and do it all over again.
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Old 10-03-2017, 03:12 PM   #17
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This is a great build you are taking your time and doing it right. What are your plans for the engine? Your S chassis is extremely clean
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Old 10-03-2017, 06:42 PM   #18
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s14

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This is a great build you are taking your time and doing it right. What are your plans for the engine? Your S chassis is extremely clean
The engine was rebuilt maybe 10-13k miles ago, so it's reliable for a N/A Engine. There is a lot of age that needs updating before throwing any kind of power at this thing. I've got to get the brakes upgraded all around since those 350z wheels are heavy in combination with the stocks sorely lacking much potential at the track. The springs/shocks probably aren't the best for the car and I'd like to upgrade to really nice coil overs in the future. As I've gone through with the SPL arms, all the rubber in this car is sorely lacking in any kind of confidence. So with that said, brakes and suspension need to be solid for me to look into any power mods.

To actually answer your question and sadly inform you that you wont see any power mods anytime soon though, I would eventually love to go with the KA24DER setup if I can ever piece together the kit. I plan on getting this car to autocross events and sparingly take it to the track as well. The instant and reliable throttle response of that setup would be great for me, especially for taking it around in my 35-45 limit zones around my house on the weekends. The whole point of this car is to have reliable, controlled mostly legal fun.
With that setup I know that heat management is gonna be a tough spot and I've got some thinking to do there before committing to that idea.

I could go with a basic t28 setup done with quality parts and proper tuning once again for the quicker response and minimal lag. I have no interest in massive power surges and making my engine explode.

Also, a ls3 swap would be great if there was any real financial reason to do so, which there will never be so I'll cut that short.

I don't have any track experience, so it'd difficult to pick an engine route since I dont know what I enjoy, event wise. Once I know that, I need to get the most out of the car as it is power wise, and only then will I be able to reliably (in my self) be willing to add significant power.

TL/DR: For the next long while, focusing on prepping the rest of the car (brakes / suspension) to reliably handle the power. KA24DER if kit can be sourced and heat management solved. If not then proper t28 setup.
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Old 10-03-2017, 07:22 PM   #19
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s14 Tension Rod Installation

Alright, time to install the tension rods. Supposed to be one of the easiest things you can do to this car.
Some images of what I was about to get into:


I think this is supposed to be up and down, not slanted 45 degrees...




Pics of them out:





And now some comparison shots:



This is where things started going badly. I could not get this guy out, I knew I was in trouble when it started slipping off and rounding. I got a hack saw, but couldn't get any position down there to try and cut it. So I got a gator socket, that has like a bunch of metal cylinders to try and wrap around any shape, and those things suck really bad. So I had to get an impact wrench, FINALLY got the sucker off. So here are my victory shots.



Pictures of the arms in the car now:



Now to torque everything down...



Except that 2/4 bolts given with the tension rods won't tighten or show any resistance. So I contacted the seller, and was directed to SPL Parts, so I've sent an email to hopefully get replacements or at least figure out where I can get replacements. like the size of the bolt and such. I know they are grade 10.9 (stamped on the hardware).

So until thats resolved the car is stuck on jack stands and hogging the center of my garage all week for a "30 minute job". Can't wait to get her back down and on the road again!
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Old 10-08-2017, 03:26 PM   #20
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s14 SPL Tension Rod Review

SPL sent me replacement bolts and upheld their amazing customer support. I found it odd that the bolts I had originally were 19mm, and the replacements were 18mm though. I went ahead and installed and torqued them down and took the car around the neighborhood for an initial impression.

Surprisingly, there was a huge difference, we all saw the condition of the originals though, so maybe not surprising. The steering wheel no longer vibrates aggressively, and is actually extremely smooth aside from idle. That's because of the engine mounts though I am sure. Steering feels much more predictable and braking doesn't jerk the wheel to the side anymore. Braking doesn't make the car dive so much either, although the brakes still need replacement. They are all subtle changes that make a big difference in the overall driving feel, and I'm sure the its also the unison of all the arms installed too.

I couldn't contain my grin while driving it and these arms have definitely sparked a hope and confidence that this car has a lot more potential. I'm excited to move onto the next step!
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Old 10-09-2017, 08:26 AM   #21
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I had the same thing with my coupe; completely new car now.

Don't S/C the KA bro, all that work isn't worth it, honestly.
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Old 10-17-2017, 01:20 PM   #22
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s14 SPL Brake Deflectors

My girlfriend got me some SPL Brake Deflectors for my Birthday!



Will hopefully install sometime this week. Drove the car around more this weekend and I am absolutely loving the new SPL arms.
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:40 PM   #23
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I had the same thing with my coupe; completely new car now.

Don't S/C the KA bro, all that work isn't worth it, honestly.
For the newbs, what does S or C or R stand for?
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Old 10-17-2017, 07:43 PM   #24
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For the newbs, what does S or C or R stand for?
S/C =supercharger. Ka24de-r = ka engine that is supercharged. Ka24de-t is one that has been turbocharged.

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Old 10-19-2017, 10:13 PM   #25
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s14 Update

Installed the SPL brake deflectors tonight. Passenger side went in no issues. Driver side doesn't line up with the control arm hole. (Mine was newer so it already has the hole SPL specified/designed for). Pretty frustrating, I just secured that side with a ziptie, and we will see if there is any vibration issues. There shouldn't be any clearance issues with brake lines and such.



I doubt I will notice any difference given that I'm not currently driving the car hard enough to notice any benefit. This build is about prep work though and doing it right the first time, so brake cooling has been taken care of!
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Old 09-19-2018, 10:59 AM   #26
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Ordered most of the parts for a z32 brake upgrade. Hopefully will have another update in the upcoming month or so.

On the other hand, update on the new BRZ of the family hogging attention from the 240.





New 255/35/18 square Michelin Super Sport 4s.
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Old 09-19-2018, 06:47 PM   #27
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Ive seen your s14 parked outside your house, super clean man!
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