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Thread: General s14 issues. Need Help!!

  1. #1
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    General s14 issues. Need Help!!

    Hey everyone this is my first post on here and my first time posting on a forum so go easy!

    Last year my Grandad gave me his 200sx that he had owned since new and it was awesome, the car has always been a dream of mine to own and it did not disappoint.

    When I took my car into Garage-D to fix an ABS light I had on and they came back with a crazy list of issues which scared me to drive the car:

    - Rust and holes in the boot (Where the spare tire goes), this caused the boot to get wet and break the ABS computer. This has since been replaced and is in a bag temporarily until all the holes in the boot are welded.
    - Sticking front right brake caliper. It makes a noise whilst at higher speeds which is scary to drive.
    - VVT sprocket / hub. makes a noise on acceleration, a grinding noise.
    - Small crack in the turbo manifold, causing more noise and a loss of power.
    - They said the clutch was worn and needed replacing.
    - Subframe bushings and other bushings throughout the car are worn.
    - My front left tie rod link and drop link are worn.
    - A small oil leak at the front of the engine. No oil is ever on the ground but the front of the engine is wet.
    - General rust in wheel wells and near the suspension. Areas where my grandad had patches welded are now starting to rust again themselves.
    - Rev counter is broken.

    So unfortunately my car is now sitting under a cover on the drive and I have bought a Honda Jazz to get to and from work

    Just really on here to ask for advice. I want to own this car for the rest of my life and keep it in as stock of a condition as possible. I'm not looking to slam it on coil overs etc I want to keep it the same way that he had it. The only "mod" I have done is put an apple car play stereo in

    I just want to get the car back into a condition where I can drive it for fun and go out at car meets to meet other car but that list of issues could easily set me back 5k and I don't have that money right now to plow into a car.

    Any help would be appreciated, just looking forward to meet more Nissan car crazy people!!

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    Not really sure what help you are after really. If you can't do any of the work yourself then it's gonna cost money to get it done. I think I can break the list down into easy to hard jobs though so you could try and tackle the easy jobs yourself to save some money.

    Front cover oil leak is a common problem. It weeps out of the gap between the front cover and the head or from an old rocker cover gasket. The fan then blows it all around making it look bad. Cheapest way to try and sort it is to clean all the oil off the front of the engine, change the rocker cover gasket and then try and wipe some sealer into the gap between the head.

    Rebuilding a front calliper isn't that hard as you as you have basic tools. A full rebuild kit for both front callipers is around 60. There's plenty of guides on YouTube of how to do this job.
    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/284098524656

    Suspension links and bushings are a bit more complex as you usually need to burn out the rubber and cut the sleeves. This can be done DIY but will take a long time for someone doing the job on the weekend. You can get a full poly bushing set for around 200 and poly subframe bushings for around 140. It's worth noting that doing the rear diff bushings at the same time is very worth while to stop the diff moving under acceleration
    https://www.tegiwaimports.com/energy...MaAk-3EALw_wcB
    https://au.gktech.com/polyurethane-rear-subframe-bushes

    Crack in the manifold could possibly be welded up in place which would save money. If not, you will need a new exhaust manifold gasket, downpipe gasket and new copper washers for the oil and water lines.

    Rev counter is a common problem. Dry solder joints is usually the cause, you can try and fix it by re-soldering the joints or replace with a working used item.

    VVT sprocket is a bit more of a task to replace and it costs 300+ for the new sprocket. Would say that's a garage job unless you are clued up on what you are doing. Can also replace the rocker cover gasket to help with the oil leak while doing this.

    Clutch would be a garage job unless you like laying on your back and having to bench press a gearbox off and on while trying to line up splines and dowels.

    Rust is the big problem and usually responsible for the death of these cars. Unless you can fab and weld yourself, this is where most of your money goes. Depending on how much rust there is, you can bank on paying 200-300 day for repairs. Sill repairs usually take 5-10 days depending on how bad they are. You could probably get it done cheaper but from the previous patches you mentioned, it's probably already had 'MOT style' repairs done to just get it through.

    Main thing to remember is that these cars are around 25 years old, you will be replacing worn out parts much more often than a modern car. They will cost you money every year, especially if it's not been kept on top of for a while.

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    Cheers Mike, that's exactly what I was looking for.

    Gives me enough information to start knocking out the problems one by one.

    Thank you very much!

    To get stuff like the VVT and clutch done. i.e garage jobs do you think it would be better to go to specific garages that work on Japanese cars every day like Garage-D and pay their premium. Or would a good backstreet garage with a good reputation be fine?

    I have a similar question for the welding, would I need to look for a specific car shop that does rust repair or will most body shop guys be good enough?

    Cheers again mate
    Last edited by jack_d; 07-02-2021 at 17:01.

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    To be honest there is nothing there that sounds too bad. These are old girls now and will need some loving. The first thing on that list is Rust. Get that sorted and the rest can be done over time bit by bit. Let the rust go too far and then you are in shits-ville.

    My ABS computer got wet at Christmas and was throwing an ABS warning light too. I pick a 2nd hand one up here for 20 quid. Worn bushes- drive on and replace them one by one when you have the time and money. (Unless they are totally gone, but there is a difference between "worn" and "fuked").

    The cracked turbo manifold, can you remove it yourself and then drop to a garage to weld it? The welding should not cost much.

    - - "A small oil leak at the front of the engine. No oil is ever on the ground but the front of the engine is wet."" - Don't worry about it. They all do this. Mine has been like that since I bought her with 21k mile. And 16 years later it is still like that. Once out of all those years the tester did fail me for "an oil leak". So engine degreaser and a pressure washer it was "Fixed". And it will take another 12 years or so for enough of it to get dirty for the tester to notice. It is a seep rather than a leak.

    I am sure there are threads on here about the rev counter....

    RUST - get that sorted, even if bit by bit.

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    If someone can show me what the abs computer is I probably have it still as my abs was taken out.

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    It's this:




    It's the box on the passenger side in the boot underneath the aerial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jack_d View Post
    Cheers Mike, that's exactly what I was looking for.

    Gives me enough information to start knocking out the problems one by one.

    Thank you very much!

    To get stuff like the VVT and clutch done. i.e garage jobs do you think it would be better to go to specific garages that work on Japanese cars every day like Garage-D and pay their premium. Or would a good backstreet garage with a good reputation be fine?

    I have a similar question for the welding, would I need to look for a specific car shop that does rust repair or will most body shop guys be good enough?

    Cheers again mate
    I'd go to a garage that knows SR's for the VVT, haven't heard a bad word about Garage D as far as I can remember but I'd guess they know their way around an SR

    As for the welding, you can go to a body shop and get it done but I would make sure that you explain exactly what sort of job you want. If you just get MOT style repairs then you will be back over and over to get more rust done. If you want to keep the car forever then you need to get the repairs done to a high standard by people who protect the metal using weld through etch primer, rust converter and high quality cavity wax to max sure that it lasts. I'd recommend asking that pictures are taken through every stage of the repairs.

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    Yes good point Mike. I needed to get some rear sill welding done so I went to a Classic Car place that are well versed in cutting out rust! ;-) And they took photos at each step of the process.

    You could do it in stages to let the wallet recover - get the boot done.
    Then go back a few months later for the front turrets, etc. Although you would get a better price for the job as a whole in one go.

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    Also the leak in the rear is most likely from the rear lights leaking. They are sealed up with some horrible, sticky tar like substance that is a pain in the ass

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    Only hear good things about Garage D so well worth having a chat with them about money.

    The VVT is pricey as a part, unless you get a used one.

    On that list, the rust would be the one to work on first. As that will decided if the car lives or dies.

    Doesn't sound like the rest of the other problems are anything terrifying. What's the mileage and year?

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    Welcome to the forum!

    What I love about this forum are the amazing quality of responses to questions, as a recent owner myself (last year) this has been an invaluable resource

    Anyway, in response to the broken rev counter, here are some helpful links:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSIQ8f660ws
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4m0hrRJk4dg
    https://www.sxoc.com/vbb/showthread....ks#post4872287
    https://www.sxoc.com/vbb/showthread....-speedo-gauges

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    Cheers everyone for the responses, I should've gotten on here earlier.

    Its a 2000 car with about 120k miles.

    I have the car booked in at a body work place, they normally would only do mot style repairs so great advice in getting them to take photos throughout to insure a more thorough job.

    I have seen some replacement sills on ebay for sale would it be worth buying these and giving them to the guy who will do the welding to get all that done at the same time?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jack_d View Post
    Cheers everyone for the responses, I should've gotten on here earlier.

    Its a 2000 car with about 120k miles.

    I have the car booked in at a body work place, they normally would only do mot style repairs so great advice in getting them to take photos throughout to insure a more thorough job.

    I have seen some replacement sills on ebay for sale would it be worth buying these and giving them to the guy who will do the welding to get all that done at the same time?
    "they normally would only do mot style repairs "........... that would worry me alot to be honest. No good having photos after the job is done. Get them to keep you updated. I.e. no patches over bad metal MOT pass style. You want bad metal cut out and good metal welded in.

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    And yes, get all the welding done at the same time as it work out cheaper.

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