HonDatsun NL320 Build

1962-1965 Datsun L320 and NL320 forums - The truck that started it all in the US. All 320-specific topics and discussion can be found here.
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1963 NL 320
Posts: 65
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 5:00 pm
Car: 1963 Datsun NL320
1964 Datsun NL320

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Finally getting around to doing something with a NL 320 that I have had since 1991. Bought the truck from Jim Wolf of Jim Wolf Technology back in 1991. Truck was featured in Mini Truckin magazine in the late 80's if I remember correctly. When I bought it from Jim, it had a L20-B Nissan engine and 5 speed from a Z car in it. I used it as a semi-daily driver for about a year until it blew a head gasket. I decided to swap in a KA24E Nissan engine and 4 sp auto with lock up torque converter. Got the fab portion of the swap in fairly quickly, then life got in the way. The truck had been sitting under a tarp in a friends backyard for 30ish years. I have since moved to Arizona from California, but had a reason to visit and decided to drag the truck back to AZ and maybe get it going finally.



I showed pictures of the truck to a buddy that is into cars out here, and he convinced me that what I needed to do was swap a K24 Honda into it with a 6 speed trans from a 350Z behind it. What could possibly go wrong. Apparently the K24 Honda is swapped into all sorts of vehicles as it is capable of handling gobs of power on the stock internals.











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Here is the only pic I have with the Nissan engine still installed. It was a pretty tight fit, but it has been done by others, and I am sure I could have made it work.











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Here is a torn down K24 Honda in the engine compartment to check for clearance issues. First issue that popped up was the steering link between the steering box and idler arm was in the way of the oil pan, and there was no way I could modify the pan there as the oil pump was in the way. I ended up taking out the link and am in the process of making one that can mount to the bottom of the box arm and idler arm using 5/8" heim joints and 5/8" rod. The only other clearance issue seems to be the water pump and alternator which sit off to the drivers side of the K24 when mounted in a rear drive vehicle. I think I have it figured out well enough that I am going to get a complete JDM engine and start in on the mods needed to clear the steering box.











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Looks like there will be plenty of room for a good size radiator and single electric fan.









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There even appears to be room for a turbo since the battery is being relocated outside the engine compartment.









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Frame and transmission hump are going to need generous massaging to get this beast in there, but at $2000 for a brand new 6 speed, I could not pass up using the latest edition of the 350 Z trans.



That is all for now until the JDM K24 is sourced and I get an adapter to mate the pieces together.


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AZhitman
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Posts: 71066
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 58 L210, 63 Bluebird RHD, 64 NL320, 65 SPL310, 66 411 RHD, 67 WRL411, 68 510 SR20, 75 280Z RB25, 77 620 SR20, 79 B310, 90 S13, 92 SE-R, 92 Silvia Qs, 98 S14.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
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Welcome aboard! I have an NL as well - What part of AZ did you relocate to?

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1963 NL 320
Posts: 65
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 5:00 pm
Car: 1963 Datsun NL320
1964 Datsun NL320

Post

I am in Mesa near Las Sendas. I visited Datsun Ranch many years ago, so long that I do not exactly remember the year. You are welcome to visit if you are ever in the area.

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AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 71066
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 58 L210, 63 Bluebird RHD, 64 NL320, 65 SPL310, 66 411 RHD, 67 WRL411, 68 510 SR20, 75 280Z RB25, 77 620 SR20, 79 B310, 90 S13, 92 SE-R, 92 Silvia Qs, 98 S14.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

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Gotcha. I used to hang out with a guy who was the owner of the construction company that built that development...

Didn't know we had met, apologies for my poor memory!

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1963 NL 320
Posts: 65
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 5:00 pm
Car: 1963 Datsun NL320
1964 Datsun NL320

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No worries, it was a long time ago. Your 320 was adjacent to your house under one of those canvas shade covers. I was out in the valley visiting my mother in law.

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AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 71066
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 58 L210, 63 Bluebird RHD, 64 NL320, 65 SPL310, 66 411 RHD, 67 WRL411, 68 510 SR20, 75 280Z RB25, 77 620 SR20, 79 B310, 90 S13, 92 SE-R, 92 Silvia Qs, 98 S14.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

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Ah, that was before Datsun Ranch.
She's still awaiting restoration... but a lot closer now!

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1963 NL 320
Posts: 65
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 5:00 pm
Car: 1963 Datsun NL320
1964 Datsun NL320

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I would have sworn you called it that, but maybe I read that somewhere and it stuck. How long ago did you move?

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AZhitman
Administrator
Posts: 71066
Joined: Mon Apr 29, 2002 2:04 am
Car: 58 L210, 63 Bluebird RHD, 64 NL320, 65 SPL310, 66 411 RHD, 67 WRL411, 68 510 SR20, 75 280Z RB25, 77 620 SR20, 79 B310, 90 S13, 92 SE-R, 92 Silvia Qs, 98 S14.
Location: Surprise, Arizona
Contact:

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We built this place in 2014... Finally got my huge shop! :)


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