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L28 NA to Turbo rebuild


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#1 1979ZED

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Posted 31 May 2010 - 03:28 PM

Hi Guys,

I am a newby here.

I love Nissans and have had 300zx, R34 skyline, s13 silvia, s14 silvias etc since i was 18.

Approaching my 30s now I decided it's time to restore one of these great built cars and this lead me to buy a 1979 Datsun 280zx to restore.

It's a Non turbo auto and i want to rebuild the engine into a turbo.

I want to keep the original engine numbers so would like to re-use the existing block.

I want to rebuild the entire engine anyway, but what will I need to change to turbo it. Would I just purchase parts for the L28ET? Would these parts fit straight in?

I will eventually be doing a manual conversion also, but that's a job for another day.

Thanks for the help in advance.
Deano

#2 stevo_gj

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Posted 31 May 2010 - 04:29 PM

I would strongly suggest doing some research and coming back with more specific questions. Use the search function in the top right hand corner and have a look through the Engine section of the forum. These questions have been answered before it's just a matter of looking.

First search I did returned these threads:

http://www.viczcar.c.../topic,7.0.html
http://www.viczcar.c...13.html#msg1913
http://www.viczcar.c...7.html#msg62877
http://www.viczcar.c...0.html#msg52600

This is probably what you need the most:
http://www.viczcar.c...273.html#msg273

#3 1979ZED

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Posted 31 May 2010 - 04:52 PM

i did try searching, but couldn't find exactly what I was after.

Iwant to know if I can/need to put a turbo motor head onto the non turbo bottom and what bottom end internals should I use. Will the turbo engine bottom end internals suit? What are the differences etc.

#4 stevo_gj

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Posted 31 May 2010 - 05:28 PM

This thread has some good info as well: http://www.viczcar.c...88.html#msg7288

Apart from that I guess you need some experts, Scando perhaps?

#5 garvice

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Posted 31 May 2010 - 05:46 PM

If you say you have searched and haven't found anything then you haven't searched enough.
This has been done many times, it is a cheap motor to build in the states, so check out the american forums, inparticular

http://forums.hybrid...issan-l6-forum/

or the starting line document
http://www.xenonz31....s130/l28et.html

Plus, best search topic is "l28et"

You will find what you need there.

I also have some parts for sale but postage would be a killer
http://www.viczcar.c...pic,6592.0.html

#6 DatPilot

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 10:31 AM

Bottom line is: What is you power output goal?

If your after 150 rwkW then you can get that without opening your motor.

If your after 200kW then there are a few things that have to be done.

If your after more than 200kW then there is ALOT to be done, dont expect much change from $6000 for the engine head and internals alone.

#7 dat2kman

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 12:02 PM

P 90 head at 53 cc comb chamber was the turbo head, along with the 7cc dished pistons, make sure head has not been shaved,m as this will up the comp.
The F54 block was the "stronger" block, (fitted to some 280ZX)
One of these dropped onto your original block should do the trick, leave the rest of it alone, or, if wanting a bit more insurance, do a ARP main cap bottom end stud kit, use some decent conrod bolts, ARP or whatever, and, a Head stud kit, rather than the stock head bolts, better sealing and accurate torque setting.
Insurance costs, but worth it!

#8 1979ZED

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Posted 01 June 2010 - 03:40 PM

Well my R34 that I just sold was running 268rwkw  :D but i'm not chasing that sort of power with this car.

I want this car to be a restoration project, but at the same time give the car a bit of power to zip around with.

150rwkw would be plenty for this project.

I was thinking along the lines of a p90 head on my existing block and maybe chanding the pistons over to the turbo pistons as well.

Obviously I would need stronger injectors as well as fuel pump.

What about ECU. Do you guys go aftermarket? What type?

Thanks for the help. You guys on this forum really know what you're on about and I have found a lot of info for many different things I want to do.

#9 DatPilot

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Posted 04 June 2010 - 12:52 PM

Aftermarket ECU is the only way.
The standard one wont work past 100kW (bosch L-Jetronic is so basic its not funny, a calculator has more brains that it!)

Microtech LT-4 /MT-4 as a piggyback controlling your injectors will be the cheapest option for 150kW, but wont control timing. (will have to lock the dissy so it wont advance on boost.... bad)

If you have the cash, an australian company called adaptronic make an EXCELLENT unit, fully programmable, about $950 to purchase, and $300 or so on the dyno

#10 1979ZED

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Posted 04 June 2010 - 02:26 PM

is it easy to find people to tune it?

I come from the skyline scene where a apexi power fc was the norm and any good workshop could tune.

#11 Scando

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Posted 05 June 2010 - 11:03 AM

Well my R34 that I just sold was running 268rwkw  :D but i'm not chasing that sort of power with this car.

I want this car to be a restoration project, but at the same time give the car a bit of power to zip around with.

150rwkw would be plenty for this project.

I was thinking along the lines of a p90 head on my existing block and maybe chanding the pistons over to the turbo pistons as well.

Obviously I would need stronger injectors as well as fuel pump.

What about ECU. Do you guys go aftermarket? What type?

Thanks for the help. You guys on this forum really know what you're on about and I have found a lot of info for many different things I want to do.


The turbo pistons are the same as what you've already got.

For the power you're chasing don't change the head.  The P90 lowers the compression ratio too far and you'll loose response.  The standard engine is more than capable of making the power you're chasing.  I had 174rwkw on a basically standard n/a engine at 10psi with my old setup.  I'm running a Haltech sport 2000 but a basic Microtech would be a lot cheaper and do the job fine.  The 174rwkw was made with a Haltech F9 but this was a fuel only computer and I'd suggest going for something that also controls ignition.

Read the thread below, it runs through the basics you'll need for a budget turbo build.

http://www.viczcar.c...9.html#msg62759

#12 ozconnection

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Posted 07 June 2010 - 09:44 PM

The turbo pistons are the same as what you've already got.

For the power you're chasing don't change the head.  The P90 lowers the compression ratio too far and you'll loose response.  The standard engine is more than capable of making the power you're chasing.  I had 174rwkw on a basically standard n/a engine at 10psi with my old setup.  I'm running a Haltech sport 2000 but a basic Microtech would be a lot cheaper and do the job fine.  The 174rwkw was made with a Haltech F9 but this was a fuel only computer and I'd suggest going for something that also controls ignition.

Read the thread below, it runs through the basics you'll need for a budget turbo build.

http://www.viczcar.c...9.html#msg62759


174rwkw is fantastic without ignition control....that's twice the average output from an L28. You can build me my next turbo engine!!!!

#13 Scando

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 01:20 PM

174rwkw is fantastic without ignition control....that's twice the average output from an L28. You can build me my next turbo engine!!!!


Easy to build yourself, just pull it out of a standard 280ZX  ;)

With the right bolt on bits, good fuel, and a decent computer you could easily make over 200rwkw on an internally standard L28.  Compression ratio is only 8.3:1 so the n/a engine is very turbo friendly.

My current setup is making 265rwkw on standard 2nd hand rods and crank with forged pistons and a slightly modified P90 head.

#14 pauly_adams

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 12:11 AM

hey all

i thought idd bring this thread back up due to me doing a l28e to l28ET swap what i have in mind for the moment is.

L28ET exhaust manifold and l28 turbo
standed l28e efi manifold
throttle i was going to use standed for now but I'm open to ideas
ecu will be standed for the moment
standed air flow meter for the moment
303cc Toyota supra injectors just too be on the safe side
90 psi turbo fuel pump
fuel pressure regulator
l28e dizzy from a 79 280zx with locked mechanical advance
I'm thinking i should run a blow off valve but unsure of legality

so there is my list I'm pretty sure that's it is there anything I'm missing i will only be running 5 too 7 psi boost also how would i go about registration will it need to be engineered or will it pass a blue slip.

cheers Pauly



#15 1979ZED

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 01:41 PM

I've read about locking the dizzy, but why is this?

#16 zzzzed

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 01:58 PM

so the timing dose not advance at higher revs. On boosted applications this can cause detonation and blow holes in pistons



thought i better add a full stop before i get a spank from lurch

#17 garvice

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 03:57 PM

Generally speaking, as boost pressure comes on you take timing out.

EDIT: SorryZZZed, just saw your post. What he said.

#18 pauly_adams

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 05:15 PM

the idea like the last two said is to stop it from advancing too much. if you use an unlocked dizzy you will have 8 degrees at idle plus your 15 degrees from the vacuum this will drop a little once the boost pressure goes up and then upwards of 20 degrees off your mechanical this will cause detonation almost instantly at anything high then about 5 psi and then it never ends well. from what i have read you can weld the weights in the dizzy in place or use a locking plate.

the other thing i thought of is to remove the weights altogether can anyone confirm if this will work or will it just cause more issues as it may then become out of balance at high rpm.

cheers pauly

#19 1979ZED

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 07:16 PM

with engine managementyou wouldn't need to do this though would you?

#20 pauly_adams

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 09:35 PM

yeh you will still need to do this as it still will advance mechanicaly




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