280z re-injected! The Z gets new fuel injectors

 [shit – found this old post from 9/20/15  in Drafts (yes, two years ago!) with a bunch of pics but no write up. Well, let’s do it then! You’ve got time for Daily Datsun, right? Thank you! Let’s read on!]

As you’ve guessed from the title, we’re replacing fuel injectors!

 

After purchasing a classic Z, or any old car for that matter, there’s always a list of things to inspect, test, and replace. After what’s now coming up on…3 years (oh my!), I’m finally diving into the engine – specifically, its ignition and fuel injection.

The injectors in this Z have always been unknown to me..well frankly because I didn’t take the time to inspect or get to understand them. They clearly look like they were replaced by the previous owner (Wild Bill’s brother), they worked, it ran, and that’s all I needed to know.

But whenever I looked at those electric signal connectors fastened by a wad of silicon glue, it always made me wonder what the heck was going on. Until now I’ve been in the ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ camp, but one day, I had the gumption to poke at it while the engine was running… Immediatly, the engine started choking, gasping for fuel. You know, it’s about time we give it love and clean these up!

Let’s get our hands dirty!

What you’ll need:

  1. 280z Fuel Injectors – I went with the FJ707 fuel injector from Standard Motor Products
  2. Fuel Injector signal trigger – (I don’t know the real name for this but that’s what I’m calling it…) Standard Motor Products SK25
  3. Long Philips screwdriver, PH1
  4. Razor blade
  5. Wirebrush
  6. Rag to catch the gas
  7. M5-.8, 30mm machine screws (optional)
  8. Easy-out (optional, but i highly recommend SpeedOut or Aisxle )
  9. Hammer (optional)
  10. About 1-1.5hrs

 

Remember those FJ707 fuel injectors I bought a while ago? (7/25/2015)

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Here’s what comes with the FJ707 fuel injector for the 280z:

Tip: Before diving into any project, it’s good to understand what’s the current state, or steady state – basically, what the heck is going on. I listened to how things ran, did a quick inspection of bolts, and made a mental note of where everything was (of course I made a digital “note” with camera too!). Are bolts rusted? What other parts are in and around the area that may need replacing? It really helps to visualize what you’ll be doing BEFORE you go and do it.

On with it!

Prepare to use a long Philips screwdriver to take out the screws holding in the fuel injectors. Or I suppose a right angled driver could work too. A long Philips will help get passed all the fuel rail business.

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I didn’t have the right angled Philips but this extension I had lying around did just the trick.

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Start by removing the screws that hold down the portion of the fuel rail above the injectors you’d like to replace.

Loosen up the hose clamps that connects the injector hose to the fuel rail. Getting the old injector hose off can be tricky. Just use a razor to cut a slit length wise where the hose meets the fuel rail. CAREFUL! Gas is going to leak out, so get that rag ready and handle it properly. You’ll notice that the fuel rail is separated into several sections. This is perfect because you won’t have to remove the whole thing to change the injectors out. I loosened one end of that sectional hose in the rail just to relieve stress and give the rail some flexibility. Now you can change 3 injectors at a time.

Note the silicon glue / electrical tape holding the injector’s signal trigger…

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I started with the set of three closest to the cabin. Of those three, it’s easiest to start disassembling from the cabin forward, and then when re-assembling, start with the one farthest from the cabin. It easier this way because the motion of the fuel rail as you’re working on each injector can pop off the assembly of the previous one…you’ll see.

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Here you’ll see the old injector on the left and new one installed on the right. When disassembling be sure to remember the sequence of parts and process.

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Here’s the old injector with flange, gasket, and seal (cut). The rubber seal maybe all worn out and stuck to the flange or injector. Just cut that sucker off. I also used a hammer to get the flange off of one of them. Light taps!

Use the wirebrush to cleanup the parts.

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The gasket was a bit out of shape when we pulled the assembly apart…

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Our buddy Christian working the metal gasket straight.

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Ugh stripped head. That’s what you get with a 38 year old bolt – rust and dust! I use the Speed Out easy out (Amazon) for all stripped heads – they’re amazing.

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Replaced it with a stainless M5-.8 bolt, 30mm long from Home Depot or Amazon. You’ll notice the head a touch larger, bolt a bit longer, but it works just fine. Make sure to pick up new lock washers while yer at it.

Reassemble everything and that’s it! I think you’ll know if the injector isn’t working properly – the Datsun’s engine is pretty transparent, you’ll notice the misfire.

Next up: Shocks? Bushings? Hey, how come in one picture I see some blue wire in the background?!

Let it rain

This morning’s adventure started out w/ getting three simple plastic pieces installed and hopefully end with a new battery tray and un-cracked center console. Perhaps a bit too ambitious.

Inspect, Inspect, Inspect – I’ve been trying to avoid the rust issue just a little bit longer (at least until the honeymoon phase is over), but you know, you’ve just gotta face it. Luckily this machine truly hasn’t seen much aging, and is pretty rust free – i just don’t want to be surprised. I took another look at the bondo’d driver side rear quarter panel, and it looks like it was a broad dent that just popped back out – almost no crease lines from the dent, just two small holes from which they probably popped it back out. There was some quarter sized surface rust forming, but nothing to be concerned about. One thing i did notice was the brace that holds quarter panel plastic was bent – ah ha! the true nature of the dent showing itself through the remnants of the damage. As you can see, pretty bent out of shape, but nothing a little force won’t correct. Tagged the inner panel w/ rust inhibitor and even did the whole for the antenna.
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Engine Cutting Out at Idle – yep. I was going to take the 280z out to pick up the center console from whale-tail Andrew, but it wouldn’t stay idle! The car would start just fine, stay at idle for a little bit, then just slowly drop and drop, then *poof*, cut dead. This morning was no different, it wouldn’t stay at idle. After reviewing yesterday’s air-filter-to-AFM hose, and fusible links I remembered that I didn’t quite fix the squeaking belt noise. Then it hit me – engine cuts / rpms drop when gas is pressed… Engine spins the alternator, alternator converts that mechanical energy into electrical, electricity for spark plugs! Once I tightened up that alternator belt the engine stayed idle and actually ran better – huh, imagine that!

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Ugh! – Damn, can’t wait to get that manual. For anyone putting on the 280z driver side rear quarter panel plastic get your tools out – it’s not just a pop-in job. Long trial-and-error story short, I had to take out the rear deck panels, the deck stand, the seat belt AND the seat belt fastener plate in order to push that thing in. 45min royal pain in the ass. No wonder it wasn’t put back in place! But man, so much cleaner now. Shined up the back plastic as well, and fit that into place – it’s coming together.

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Here’s Wild Bill! Currently running a great Datsun truck – but take a look in the back! Panasport 15×7 for only $400! They’ve seen better days, needs some new enamel, but hey, $400! And every paragraph referring to wild Bill is not without an exclaimation!
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