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My 1977 260Z 2 seater, RB25DET converted (lots of pics, be warned)

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I figured that since I get asked so much about my car, it would be easier to

post a build up/story thread.




I was only 17 when I fell in love with zeds.  A friend owned a nice clean

240Z and had aspirations of big things, but as usual things change.  I

offered him money time and time again, but he wouldn’t sell.

So, I joined the army and finally after training ended up in Darwin.

I made friends with a guy who was from Sydney and went to his birthday party

in Sydney.

So, I was in the army, full of money and shiver and on leave at a friends

place in Springwood, Sydney.  His old man had a Z31 and I liked the look of

and mentioned I would love to buy a zed.  He suggested we go down to

Castlereigh near Penrith to have a look and at least learn what to look for

when buying a zed.


As I arrived to see a few nice rally cars of different makes, I was shown

into the garage where there lied my zed.  Covered in dust, but sexier than a

really sexy thing (Jessica Alba?).  He showed me all the right places to look for rust and things that can go wrong with them, but nothing appeared wrong on this car.  He then (like all

good car sales men do), told me it was for sale.  A quick check of the bank

account and a few dealings later, it was mine.


It had a carby L28 at the time, but for a bit of extra cash he swapped the motor for his spare

280ZX engine (bugger all K's) and some fuel injection and better springs and



Just before it went for the conversion








I took delivery of it a few weeks later after everything had been completed.

  I couldn’t believe its handling and torque and was the envy of a few of my

friends from my school days.


Around the same time I was considering getting a loan for an R33 GTST.  But

after seeing insurance prices for an 18yo, it wasn’t going to happen.


Some time passed and I was only using it to drive around when I was home in

Canberra on leave, when I got a great opportunity to go overseas to a

certain sandy country.  4 1/2 months later and $45k tax free, I was

wondering what to spend it on, not really, I always knew :D

I paid off my loan for the N15 Pulsar SSS I had and got to work.

I was also posted to Puckapunyal near Seymour in Victoria on arrival back to


First was a few small things like Whiteline swaybars which is where I met my

suspension man Chris (Inline steering and suspension, Queanbeyan).


Swaybars being fitted






Now it was time to get down to business.  I found a RB into zed setup

(thankyou Drunkenmaster) and started calling around different importers to

find an RB25DET, box, loom and ecu.  It was surprisingly hard to find at the

time and finally found it in Newcastle for $4200 delivered (was an ok price

at the time), though none of them were from the same car.


I booked it in at the workshop and the engine arrived a few days later. 


Just after delivery







This was my first mistake, I booked it into Jakes Performance in Canberra...

Anyway, I was told it would take 2 weeks and cost $5500, 6 weeks, many

arguments and false finishing times and $7000 later, I got it back.  We

later found that his intercooler piping was full of pin holes and that he

didn’t really do much to my car, but sent it to other places, the only good

work done by him was the compressed surge tank and the gearbox mount.











Enough whinging now.

So it came back with:

RB25DET and gearbox fitted and wired in

3 inch exhaust, no cat, just resonator and muffler, 96 decibels.

Compressed surge tank (1litre or so)

front mount intercooler and pod filter, making 155rwkw


Just after getting it back




As soon as I got it back, I installed the front hilux 4 pots calipers and slotted DBA

rotors which coincidently I bought from a guy in Springwood.  Ken was his

name, he’s part of the Sydney zed car club and has a pearl white 240Z, very

nice car. Heres a pic I found in our gallery:



The brakes and my tubby butt installing them





Next to go was the stock seats.  I went through a number of different ones

trying to find something that fits due to the thin space provided, in the end

I settled for 2 wide black OBX Daytona fixed back seats.  I used the

original rails and did a bit of modifying, but got them there in the end.


They are a bit dirty,but interior will come later



Also got a pair of 4 point harnesses, damn they make a huge difference.


The next step was to get engineering done so I could get rego.  It passed

engineering, but it was slightly too low because of my exhaust.  I couldn’t

get the exhaust any higher, so I went to Pedders Suspension to get the car raised.  At

this stage I ended up getting new shocks, enter Koni Red internally


It failed on a few small things like reverse lights, speedo etc. (glad it

passed on sound though, just).


I wasn’t very happy with the response, albeit turbo lag that was there, so I

spoke to a guy and asked him to design and remake my intake plenum as a front facing

one.  So in the end, the throttle body went from the middle of the plenum

and going across the top of the engine, to facing forward, down and to the

right, so essentially cutting out about 1 metre of piping.  It made a huge

difference, in fact it lowered boosting to around 2700rpm.


You can see the throttle body and intercooler pipe coming forward from the plenum



I had been doing a fair bit of research (not enough it would seem in the

end) into doing a height adjustable coilovers.  I wanted to be able to not

only adjust my ride height to suit different races, but for the good variety

of springs and ease of disassembling too.  At the same time I came across a

camber adjustable strut top that gets welded into the body where the top

spring seat would normally bolt in.  This requires that whole section to be

cut out.  I committed and bought all the parts required.


Surface rust *shudders* (I have fixed the rear towers on the outside, just

gotta do the inside and front.





This was a very lengthy process and at the time I had decided I wanted to

enter in the Vic round of the Dutton Rally.  It was a tight finish, but the

car only just made it out of the suspension shop in time, but there was too

much work to be done within a week. :P Disappointing really.


The black ones are the 240Z struts I replaced.  (Some fool decided to

put 240Z struts into a 260Z)







So I drove it around for a while as it was and was enjoying kicking V8 and

shiver box ricer arse for a while, but then, the dreaded RB coil problem.

Que splitfire coils, Iridium sparkies, high flow turbo, boost controller and

Apexi Power FC.  It took a week or so, but in the end it pulled 249.5rwkw.

Unfortunately, the stock blow off valve couldn’t take it and was releasing

around 17psi and 5500rpm.  I fixed it with a GFB stealth FX, but after that

came the injectors maxing out at about 6000rpm.  The engine has a 7500rpm

redline and the power was still climbing, I’ve recently ordered some

Sard 550cc injectors, it will be interesting to see what happens.


I had it down in Vic for a short time and whilst there, I attempted to do a

quater mile and 0-100 time test on a stock clutch.  It got fried, and could

hardly accelerate to 100kph, so I got a 5 puck cushioned Extreme clutch

installed for $1200, it’s reasonably driveable considering the horsepower it

can hold.




I left the army in December 2006 and all the time since being posted to

Puckapunyal, I was driving up most weekends to work on the car.  Needless to

say, my Pulsar clocked up a lot K's in a short time.  The Pulsar was stolen

about a month after moving back to Canberra, $16k insurance helped pay a few

debts and fund some more stuff.  So I bought an R31 Silhouette as a daily.

Since I was unemployed for about 5 months (comes into play a bit later in

the story), the money helped, but I needed to get a job, so what else do you

do when you leave the army and don’t join the police, become a Security guard

:D I scored the best security job, patrol driver so now I get payed to throw

a Hyundai Getz around instead of 13 tonne armoured vehicle :P. It pays well

and is a pretty satisfying job.


It was around this time the car developed a very Smokey out poor from the

exhaust.  I knew it was the turbo, rings or valve stem seals.  I had

a look around and toyed with the idea of getting an already built forged

internal engine, or my mechanic friend rebuilding it with stock internals. 

After pulling the then very new turbo off and finding it wasn’t the

problem and not having enough money to go with forged internals, we pulled

the engine apart.  This was in January, 2007, I’m still waiting on the engine


    So since I obviously had a lot of time on my hands, I brought the car

minus engine back to Canberra to get the suspension sorted out, once and for

all.  This turned out to be a good move, since now it is complete and I have

time to fix and finish all the little things before the engine is back.


Around April I took ownership of a HJ75 Landcruiser Troop carrier as a tow

vehicle, so far it has towed the zed twice, but been off road about 30 times

:P I can’t help myself.  But come next year, its going to get a work out, so

I’m looking at doing a turbo engine conversion from a 60 series Landcruiser. 

Its a beast and I have already started pumping money into that too :D


The beast in action (front and rear air lockers)


> 25.jpg


Since its tax time and I was unemployed for 5 months and making only $30k

this year, but being taxed as though I was making $40k+, I got a nice big

return of $3800!! So of course I bought injectors and payed for my




So that’s where I’m up to now, I think I have covered most things.


What’s next...


At the moment I’m putting things back together and installing new parts I

have like my CV conversion kit and rear brake setup etc.,  But I hope to be

finished by the end of September to race in the Phillip Island 6 hour relay


Soon to have: Urethane front air dam and flares (spoiler on its way from

states), rear disk brakes, CV conversion,  appropriate spring rate in Eibach

springs, 550cc injectors, put the engine back in and a tune.  I also have a

Wilwood brake bias adjuster that I will try and get put in soon too, but

that one might have to wait depending on the braking with the rear disk



The car at the moment:


Nissan/Datsun 1977 RS30 260z 2 seater



Power fc with hand controller

Intake upgrade

Front mount

3inch exhaust

Cut and shut intake manifold

Splitfire coils

High flow steel turbine turbo

Irid sparkies

*Drive train:

Stock RB25 manual box

Extreme 5 puk cushioned button clutch

Single piece tail shaft

Longnose R200 diff with Cusco 2 way LSD

Front brakes LN105 Hilux 4 piston calipers with DBA slotted rotors

Rear disk brake conversion, R31 callipers


Whiteline adjustable swaybars

Complete after market bushes

Ex T3 strut braces now welded to the welded in T3 adjustable camber tops

Ground control height adjustable coilover kit

Koni internally adjustable shocks front, Bilstein shocks rear.


Sparco swede steering wheel

OBX Daytona fixed back seats

Monza 4 point harnesses

Autometer sports comp oil temp, oil pressure, boost and water temp gauges.

VDO speedo and tacho


H4 100w lights

17 x 7.5 and 8.5 Simmons FR17s with toyo RA1 semis


The steering wheel (mmm, swede)




More to come soon when I’m done.



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Originally no, but since the suspension tops have changed, I will have to mount them on the original seat belt points, but that will be fine.  I dont have pics.

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Really interesting read...

Thanks a lot for the write up Scott.

You were right in thinking that we were all a bit lost as to what you were up to with your zed.

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More pics of the suspension tops being added, surace rust *cringes*, havnt had a chance to fix up.


Thanks, yeh im constantly being asked so....


The gear box mounts are mated to a plate:


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excellent ! Thanks for all the piccies and all. Interesting to note about the switch to a front facing manifold. was going to ask you separetly but you got it right there!



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Well done Scott. Sounds like you have done a shit load of work to the car with more to come. All that time running around, dropping the car off, waiting and checking to make sure things are done the way you want them is massive. It seems you are on the home stretch. Mind you once you get it on the track you will make a new list of things to improve. Good luck with it. Hopefully we get to see it here in Vic.

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Thanks,you will for sure.

My intercooler goes on the oposite side of the radiator support, so in front of the radiator.  I chose the the grill because there was still a lot of air flow between the oil cooler and the intercooler and it wouldnt affect the performance of the intercooler.  Plus its more efficient for the oil cooler.

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Very nice.  Looks like it's already an awesome car and will be even better once you finish the things you're working on at the moment!


Had the body been restored when you bought it or was it original.  The body looks to be in abnormally good condition for a Z   :)

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Someone was a master at bogging.  When I bought it, the body looked perfect, I have found a few bog spots since that make me cringe.  The plan is to do the interior and exterior in a year or two, I dont want any of the very small rust patches spreading, so sooner is better.

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I finally got the engine back from the rebuild.  I still have to put the water pump on which will act as a cover plate until I can replace it with a different custom cover plate.

Also have some 550cc Sard injectors and collars which will go on the engine soon before it goes back in the car.




I have this new front bar which is Urethane and flexible.  Im still tossing up whether to match the paint or just leave it black, but ill see when i get it on the car.  THOUGHTS?





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Is there an easy way of shrinking these pics so they can be clicked on to be made bigger?  Would be so much easier to read then, its shitting me.

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Yeh thanks, it was, but I dont have the patience to load them individually from my photobucket account, it took a while just to do 1 and I cant upload them from my computer because a lot of my images on photobucket are from my laptop, im on my desktop now.  Some others are from the net too, so unless there is a way of uploading heaps at once via URL on image shack, we will just have to live with it.

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Yeah, I have to admit, image shack doesn't seem to be the fastest service around  :(


However, I just had a bit more of a look around on imageshack to see if there was some way around your problem. I found that they have a toolbar you can download that allows you to upload images from a website, or multiple images from your computer.


Too tired to check it out, so I hope it works  :)


Hope this helps.



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Unfortunately it never worked :(

Well I finished putting the Sard 550cc injectors in today, was pretty easy to do, just had to be really carefull.

Im about to go out to the garage to put the alternator back on, then on sunday we are putting the flywheel and clutch back on.  I have leave for 2 weeks starting on Friday, so ill be spending every hour i can on the car till its driving again.  My plan is to have running again for "Marque in the park" which is massive car show here in Canberra on Sunday 25th Nov..

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Injectors are in, ill post a pic when I get the chance.  Unfortunately, a friend who was meant to help put my clutch back in kinda stuffed me around and im 2 days behind, which means im not going to have it ready for Marque in the park, little dissapointed, but I can spend a bit more time getting it done properly now.

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It's getting close though. I am excited. I been ogling your car for yonks now it almost feels like it is mine! Make sure you do the ye olde " video of me starting it up and laughing like a crazy loon " youtube post there arent enough of them.

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lol, will do.  So what you reckon on the front bar?  Normal black, or colour coded?


I think your new spoiler will work being black so long as there are other black pieces of trim for it to work with, otherwise it may look out of place.



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Yeh, well i will be painting the flares black and so it should look fine.  ZD44TT has the same bar on the same colour and it looks good, but im trying to decide whether it would look better or not.  Im leaning towards black so that its easier to maintain since the car will be pushed hard most of the time, but i do want it to look good.

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