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240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I bit the bullet and finally decided to get a engine and attempt the SR swap. A couple of months ago me and three other people, who all have much more automotive mechanical ability than I do, pulled a KA from a hatch and got rid of it and pulled another KA from a coupe and swapped that into the hatch during a weekend. Participating in this swap was very useful in helping me to remove my KA and the knowledge that I got will be useful in helping me to perform my SR swap as well. After reading other peoples build threads I don't think I can call mine a "build" because I'm just shooting for the bare-bones basic SR swap. I plan to swap out as many gaskets as I can, the front/rear main oil seals, waterpump, thermostat, spark plugs and possibly add a few aftermarket parts over their stock counterparts. If somebody sees something that I am doing wrong by all means chime in because I need all the help I can get.

I decided to put up a quick table of contents for those basic SR swap guys who just need a answer to that one question or just need to see that one pic to verify something.
PAGE 1------------------------------------------------
Introduction and engine breakdown(no pics).
Front oil seal replacement
Intake manifold breakdown
Thermostat replacement
Engine paint
Engine cleaning
Aluminum steering bushing install
PAGE 2------------------------------------------------
Heater hose installation
Engine bay painting
Powersteering pump problem #1
Sidemount intercooler
PAGE 3------------------------------------------------
Water pump installation
Water pump aftermarket pulley installation
Upper and lower radiator hose install
Speed sensor swapout
Intake manifold gasket install
CAS(Crank angel sensor) Replacement
Vacuum hose replacement
Turbo oil return hose install
Dipstick swapout
Fuel injector seal replacement
Fuel regulator install
Oil filter sandwich plate...YOU FAILED EBAY!!!!
PAGE 4-----------------------------------------
Rant Of The Day!!!
Coolant temp sensor replacement
Coolant gauge sensor replacement
Alternator aftermarket pulley install
Vacuum hose install(intake manifold)
Fuel injector seal replacement cont.
Fuel rail install
CAS cover swapout
Turbo breakdown OEM T-25
Turbo gasket install
PAGE 5-----------------------------------------
Water outlet/neck gasket install
Bolt/nut replacement with part #'s
PAGE 6-----------------------------------------
Altima fans vs. Permacool???
Altima fan modifications(get a dremel!!!!)
Altima fan breakdown
Spark plug replacement
Altima fan modification cont.
Altima fan mounting to Koyo rad
Clutch pivot ball problem!!!
Transmission dust collar replacement
Transmission slave cylinder replacement
Wire harness clips part#
Transmission gasket replacement
Power steering pump problem #2
PAGE 7---------------------------------------------
Knock sensor replacement
Transmission gasket cont.
Transmission rear seal
Transmission mount install
Clutch pivot ball install
Clutch pivot fork
Turbo stainless steel line install
Transmission drain plug install
Motor/Engine mount install
Turbo lines install cont.
PAGE 8--------------------------------------------
Turbo manifold/outlet install
Turbo locking nuts install
Turbo manifold gaskets install
Rocker arm install
Transmission insulator mount install
Valvecover part#
Fuel line replacement
Greddy oil pan install
Oil strainer replacement
DiF Fan controller wiring
Valvecover install
Valvecover gaskets install
PAGE 9--------------------------------------------
Turbo manifold install cont.
Flywheel (no install)
DiF fan controller wiring cont.
PAGE 10------------------------------------------
Hotpipe/B.O.V. (no install)
Oil filter relocation kit install
Clutch (no install)
Power steering pump aftermarket pulley install
Power steering pump install problem #3
PAGE 11------------------------------------------
Valvecover install cont.
O2 sensor install
Boost controller (no install)
Wire harness (no install)
PAGE 12------------------------------------------
Power steering pump problem SOLVED!!!
Ignition grounding plate install
Water temp gauge install
Coolant/water line replacement under intake manifold
PAGE 13--------------------------------------------
Water temp gauge cont.
Clutch line (no install)
Gauge wiring for Boost/Oil pressure/Water temp
Engine install (no pics)
Steel braided Valvecover T lines install
Intake filter & MAF install
Altima fan fitment modification cont.
Downpipe (no install)
Shifter bushing install
Engine startup
PAGE 14--------------------------------------------
DiF fan controller problem #1
PAGE 15--------------------------------------------
Snap ring problems
Radiator feet part #
PAGE 17--------------------------------------------
DiF fan controller problem FIXED!!!!

I got my engine in from JSA Motors. Everything was intact, no missing pieces or parts(MAF/Ignitor chip), no broken crank angle sensor and a complete uncut wiring harness. Shipping was swift and I was able to track it to my delivery point. My only complaint was that the block was a little grimey, they said they would clean it before strapping it to the skid.

S13 Redtop SR20DET

The transmission is intact and very clean...

no transmission crossmember but I can use my KA's crossmember.

First thing I did was bust open the valve cover and inspect the internals, during my research I read some horror stories about people getting engines with rust and dirt inside.
Apparently someone wasn't too fond of oil changes.

After that I completely broke down the exhaust side of the block. Striped everything!

Did the same for the intake side.

I removed the alternator, P/S pump, A/C compressor and the belt driven fan.

Broke out the bucket O' water, scrub brushes and Mean Green and started scrubbing away but I got tired of killing my back working on this engine on that old tire....

and borrowed a buds engine stand. This thing is a life saver!!!!!!

Look at all the stuff I pulled, hope I can remember where everything goes when I try to put it back.

After cleaning every knookie and cranny on this block I taped off everything I didn't want to get coated and laid down a couple of coats of high heat iron cast aluminum engine enamel to the block.

Turned out better that I thought it would.

Now that I had everything cleaned up I turned my attention towards replacing parts. The first parts that I attempted to swap out were the main oil seals. I read up on what should be changed out on any basic engine swap and the oil seals were at the top of the list among other things such as oil pump, water pump, thermostat, spark plugs, various gaskets, motormounts, oil pan, etc.


Tools needed:
Socket wrench
Socket extension
27mm socket
1 transmission bolt
2 flywheel bolts
Pulley puller
Breaker bar
Seal puller or prybar/screwdriver
Seal driver

I want to change out the front and rear main seals but I can't get to the rear with the engine on the stand but the front is accesible. To get to it you need to remove the crank pulley but I couldn't get the pulley bolt off because the crank kept spinning when I tried to man up on it and I don't have any air tools so I had to think of another way. I decided to use the chain and the links that I used to pull my KA to help me.

I put two flywheel bolts through the chain and threaded them into the crank.

I looped the chain around the engine stand, stuck a transmission bolt into the link and threaded that into the transmission housing.

This kept the pulley from spinning.

This allowed me to use my 27mm socket and breaker bar to bust the crank pulley bolt loose.

Now I just need to get a pulley puller from the parts store to pop it off so I can replace the front main seal.

Here, you can see the rear main seal that I can't get to yet. Anyone know how it comes out? Does it pry out with a screwdriver or something?

1,302 Posts
Nice man! Way to go ahead and take care of all the maintence stuff that alot over look. Everything looks good thus far. All I would suggest that you do for aftermarket is front mount and aftermarket turbo elbow and downpipe, they will be hard to swap out later on and will be cleaner since there will be less hacking to the battery trays and such.

3,015 Posts
Something really important you forgot to do. Clean my motor and paint it too!!!!!!!

Anyways, The only thing I can really think of is check and make sure that you have NO dents in the oil pan.

Now is the time to think of any intake/exhasut manifold or any other bolt ons that can be difficult with the engine in the car. I would probably do electric fans but that wouldnt be too hard to do later anyways.

326 Posts
Well i will say oppose to using a crank puller...To get my Rb crank pulley off i used some of (My MUSHROOM POWER ALONG WITH MY FRIEND LUIGI)..aka...We used pry bars and took turns prying on each side....It was so easy even a cave man could do it...Only other thing i would suggest is to read up on the rocker arm situation..Hmmm only other thing i could think of since you have the injectors off is to get them cleaned basically...

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
DO NOT forget to grease the inside of your crank seals very well before installing.
Grease the insides of the front and rear main seals before I place them in, I didn't know that so thanks but I have another question. What type of grease should I use? I think I am going to get an aftermarket turbo manifold and elbow, still haven't decided on the front mount intercooler yet. I do have an electric fan and I also plan to replace the oil pan, there is a small dent. Thanks people!:1bowdown

Premium Member
3,040 Posts
You can use a prybar to get the crank pulley off... just work it from both sides as was said before. The rear main seal is in its own housing that you can pull off if you undo all the little 10mm bolts you see holding on the rear cover. Pull the housing off and you'll be able to replace the seal without even taking the engine off the stand.

Also, now would be a good time to check that your water pump is still good, your oil pickup is uncracked and your oil pan is not dented. Replacing the thermostat, head gasket and manifold gaskets is a good idea, but refer to the FSM before attempting to take the head off the engine, there are a few tricks to it. Plus the head bolts are a bitch.

1,390 Posts
You can very carefully, without damaging or marking up the crank, pry the crank seals out with a flat head screw driver. You'll fuck em up but it doesnt matter since you are replacing them. Then use some bearing grease or motor oil and grease up the outside and mainly the inside of the crank seals and set them into place straight. Tap them in with a hard rubber/plastic hammer and you are done.

I am in the middle of my second rebuild of my motor now. Last time i somehow forgot to grease my rear main and the fucker ripped and leaked like a bitch. NEVER FORGET TO GREASE A SEAL!!

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
OEM Intake Manifold

Today I took my intake manifold apart and cleaned it up. I'm gonna replace the gaskets and maybe the IACV as well.

Broke it down, intake runners, intake collector, IACV(idle air control valve) and the throttlebody.

The first thing I did was clean up the throttlebody...

It was pretty dirty.


I'll replace the throttlebody gasket when I put the intake manifold back together.

The intake collector was full of carbon buildup.

I got some brushes and cleaned it out pretty good too. I'll replace the intake collector gasket as well.


I can't decide whether or not to clean this up or just replace it. I came across a write-up on how to clean one but I can't find it again.

Carbon build-up.

Got some new hoses to replace the ones on the intake manifold.

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Front Main Oil Seal Replacement

I got my hands on a pulley puller so I could finally replace that front main seal. I tried using a prybar to work the loosened pulley off but I couldn't get it to move without putting a lot of English on it and I didn't want to risk cracking the oil pump front cover.

3 jaw pulley puller-AutoZone loan a tool program.

Looks like this.

Just take the puller and hook the legs on the pulley and get the big screw on your crank pulley bolt. The forum says to have the crank pulley bolt threaded in a tad and to place the puller legs on the 2nd or 3rd ridges of the crank pulley rather than the first.

Use a 13mm socket to crank on the pulley...

until the puller pops it free. You'll be able to see the crank pulley as it gets backed off the crank while you turn the pulley puller.

Front main oil seal. Part#13510-53J10

The oil seal has two sides that are different and it has to be placed in a specific way so make sure you get it right the first time. This is the side that goes in towards the engine, notice the big grooves...

and this is the side that goes outward toward the front of the car.

I first tried to remove the old main seal with a small flathead screwdriver, be careful not to ding or scrape the crank says the FSM. I couldn't really get it out with this small screwdriver. This made me very uncomfortable when I couldn't get it out because I know this is a sensitive area on the engine and I didn't want to damage anything or mess this up. I tried to work the screwdriver around the seal and then tried to pry out the outer edges but only managed to tear it slightly.

It started to come apart after I ripped it

After trying that I got a prybar and in a clockwise motion was able to wedge the main seal out one side at a time...

until it popped out.

I took the new seal and oiled it up and inserted it on the crank.

The FSM says to use a seal driver or an appropriate tool to install the new seal which I didn't have so I just used the old seal. After getting the new front main seal in place, I positioned the old seal directly on top of it and used a small hammer to pop it into place. These seals are very hard so it was quite solid for the poundometer to do it's thing.

Got it in, checked it to see if it was seated correctly and lined up. Good to go.

Now is a perfect time to clean this area which is hard to get to with the crank pulley on.

I would advise anyone who attempts this to place a piece of metal between your crank pulley bolt and the puller screw to keep this from happening to your crank pulley bolt when you turn the puller screw. It dug into my crank pulley bolt slightly.

I put the crank pulley back on. I was worried about mounting the pulley back on...what about the timing marks, how is this pulley going to get back to it's original position? What I hadn't realized was that the crank pulley has a indention on it that matches up with the crank so it only mounts on one way which is how it remains in it's original position so problem solved. I'm going to get a lightweight underdrive pulley so I just barely put the stock pulley back on without torquing it down.

I was very nervous about doing this so if anyone who has done it before sees something that I did wrong then please let me know.

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Assembly looks perfect! I would have used lithium grease instead of just motor oil on the seal, but motor oil works just as well.

<3 positron & his digicam
Whew! Thanks rexbo, I was waiting for someone who had done this to check it.:thumbsup

151 Posts
mm sexy motor. hey u know u could come by any time and clean my motor and stuff =] i want to but its to cold.

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)

Today I got bored so I swapped out the thermostat.

Tools needed:
Socket wrench
Socket extension
10mm socket
Liquid gasket

Water outlet houses the thermostat.

Use a 10mm socket to remove the water outlet.

After I removed the bolts I had to man-up on the water outlet to bust it loose.

OEM thermostat. Note the position of the jiggle valve.

Pull it out.

Replacement thermostat.

Nismo vs. OEM-if it's anything like the suspension parts then it's a highly overpriced copy of the stock part.

I got a razor blade and removed the leftover gasket on the water outlet and the block.

Place the replacement thermostat in with the jiggle valve upward.

Get some liquid gasket ready and put a 2-3mm bead around the water outlet neck and position it on the block then hand thread the bolts on tight and let it sit for an hour.

Come back after an hour and then tighten or torque to 2.7-3.7ft-lbs. I didn't use a torque wrench here on account of possibly busting's only 2 to 3ft-lbs. come on.

4,582 Posts
Looking good! I love the fact you take tons of photos. I'll keep checking on this thread for updates!

Are you doing all of this in your house?

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Looking good! I love the fact you take tons of photos. I'll keep checking on this thread for updates!

Are you doing all of this in your house?
Thanks and yeah, I'm doing all this in the extra space in my kitchen...hopefully I'll be ready to drop it in next month.

240SX Padawan Learner
2,204 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Engine/Parts Cleaning

Believe it or not I couldn't find Simple Green at any store here so I got the next best thing....Mean Green.

So far I've gone through about 3 bottles of this stuff and it works wonders on cleaning up a engine and engine parts. Just spray it on watch the grime roll down. For example just check out what it did for my KA P/S pump.

The power steering pumps were the filthiest things I had to clean yet, they were totally covered in crap. I always thought the P/S pumps were black but to my suprise it turned out to be gray underneath all that filth that it was covered with.


Another little tip for all those grease encrusted nuts, bolts and miscellaneous parts. I just took them, put them in a cup and let them sit in pure Mean Green for a couple of hours and they came out looking almost new except for the scratches.

Quick question, my SR's powersteering pump appears to have two pressure hoses on it, would that be a HICAS pump?
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