The Silvia was running good on the highway and around town but it’s real test would be on the track where I could give it a proper shakedown. Friday was a national holiday (like Labor Day) so I went to the track but the car wasn’t 100% and it was raining off and on. I watched a bit, worked on the car a bit (adjusting the actuator), and took some pics.
Rainy day + offroad adventures = muddy cars
Fitment polar opposites. Oh, how I want a set of R33’s.
Saturday, I planned on going back and the forecast was calling for overcast skies but no rain! Happier with how the car was running, I set about enjoying the day. Here’s a video:
The car ran great with only one hiccup. I had installed the engine the way I pulled it from the donor 180SX and that was with the valve cover breather T plumbed into the stock catch can and the forward port plugged. The first run out I took it easy and all was good. While cooling down, a friendly passerby said to unplug the port or oil would spew everywhere. Not having any hose to route the open port away from the hot manifold in case oil came out, I figured it would be better to leave it plugged and put it on the do list.
I flogged it on the next run, and while parking, saw a couple puffs of smoke coming from under the hood. Fearing the worst, I quickly parked it, popped the hood, and luckily only saw massive amounts of oil all over the passenger side of the bay and no fire. The smoke was just the oil burning off the heat shield and down pipe. Phew! I spent the next 15 minutes cleaning up the mess and refilling the oil (which appeared to have erupted out of the dipstick). I pulled the plug off and ran it the rest of the day with the port open. It revved easier and was way more responsive! Lesson learned and the car was running even better!
Otherwise the car ran great and I was super impressed! I spent a lot of time fixing odds and ends during the swap and it appears to have paid off. It’s essentially a stock SR running the T25 at .75 bar with only cooling mods done – Koyo radiator, oil cooler, R33 fan, front mount intercooler – and downpipe back exhaust. The Nismo Coppermix clutch was somewhat of a gamble since it was used, but it was delightful on track and surprisingly easy to drive around town for being unsprung. The polyurethane motor and transmissions mounts caused more vibration as expected, but it’s a worthy trade off for the engine feeling more responsive and shifting more solid. Can’t wait to drive it some more!