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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Thanks, it's still N/A and quite slow by today's standards. But it's still a bit faster than OEM and handles very well. I got the coilovers dialed in just by driving and making adjustments. Might start sourcing parts for a turbo build. Many of the companies that really supported the the GA16DE are gone though. So no more Turbo manifold available, JWT may not be making the ECU anymore. I heard the QG18DE has turbo manifolds available that bolt to the GA16DE, but the ports aren't perfectly matched.

My plan would be 370cc injectors and a MAF out of a 240sx and the JWT ECU tuned for them and the turbo/boost etc. Just seeing if these things are available anymore is a challenge.
 

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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Lately I've just been daily driving it. But a few maintenance things have been needed and will need done soon. I've done a radiator and went back to regular upper/lower hoses because the silicone ones are of poor quality and always leaked. I had to tighten them so hard the old brittle plastic collapsed on the radiator. So a new radiator and hoses went in. Unfortunately I was unaware of a thermostat issue I'm having at that time and will have to get in cooling system and replaced that too. I believe I have a 192* one in and need to replace it with a 180* so my fans don't run so much.
I just replaced my trunk and door locks for new cylinders and keys because my trunk lock acted up on me and damaged my only key making it hard to get in the trunk or doors at that point. Now they are all new and I have two keys.
The oil pan has developed a pretty good leak. I'm thinking because this last oil change I went to synthetic and the molecules are smaller etc. It went from a minor seepage to an actual leak. Either way, the pan will have to get resealed.
The rear brake drums are warped and make noise/vibrations under hard braking even though the life is good and all adjusted correctly. Considering a disk brake conversion for that. It would be pretty cheap to pull the parts off a donar car and use new pads/rotors.
 

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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Still just daily driving it. Have developed a nasty tear in the drivers seat with the foam coming apart and looking terrible. Since the car is not worth new upholstery I have decided to do the duct tape patch method and seat covers as well as a steering wheel cover and new rubber "cut to fit" floor mats. This will make for a much better looking interior. Everything is just so aged and used and the current floor mats are undersized and never fit right always sliding around. Will post some before and after pics of my $50 budget Amazon interior upgrade!

Besides that, all the car has needed is a new distributor o-ring seal and just needs the oil pan resealed still. I have taken care of all the other stuff. Car just turned over 250k miles and is proving to be one of the most dependable vehicles I've owned. Just wish it had more power. I had to take off the intake, header, and resonator for emissions testing and am dealing with the car being slower than ever again :(. Debating putting them back on or just selling them and dealing with it.
 

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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I put the two easier mods back in and surprisingly the car feels a little quicker. The intake and 2nd cat delete. I guess that gives me some motivation to put the headers back in too since that's the one that makes the biggest difference. I need to set some time aside for that since I have to pull the radiator to do it. Nice to wake this thing back up though. It can run with A/C on and actually accelerate again :D.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Finally got around to putting some care into the old Nissan. Resealed the oil pan when it was due for an oil change and put the headers back in since the oil pan job requires removing exhaust parts anyway, so got some more power back! Just replaced the distributor shaft seal as well to make the car totally leak free. I also put on a new set of Hankook Ventus V2 tires as well for the winter coming up. Insides were worn out, so I installed camber bolts and aligned it to stop that from happening again. My next thing is to upgrade the electrical system via my own custom "big 3" wire setup. The little 80amp alternator, though working, seems to have a hard time running several electrical components at once and there is a noticable drag on the car when its being over worked. So I'll be running a 1/0 gauge power wire (100A fused) from the alternator directly to the battery, and the same for a chassis and engine ground. I want to see if this helps the ignition system out when driving with several electrical loads on. This is usually an upgrade done for audio/sub and amp additions, however it's pretty common knowledge that it frees up a few horsepower too. And this little 1.6L needs all the help it can get.
 

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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Got my Big 3 wiring setup in and the install was pretty easy and straight forward. Put a 100A fuse inline for the positive cable for protection. I also removed the OEM ground that uses the same cable for both chassis and engine and installed a separate cable to each of the original locations.
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Hey man i just stumbled across your build thread..kinda cool to see anyone still giving some time to the ol forums. Anyhow i have a 1991 Sentra E ive been driving since 2014,basic as it gets 4 speed manual ga16de 100% stock powertrain for reliability/economy but has all SE-R body and interior/suspension. Same as you i have other toys with 4 times the power but id like to do a few bolt ons as well let the little GA rev a bit more freely...Have all the same plans as your build except im swapping my trans to an NX1600 4.1 final drive maybe something you want to consider also?
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Nice, I've grown to appreciate these simple old cars. Unlike the over-complicated constant issue junk of today, these are truly cars a person could keep going forever if desired. 90's to early 2000's is the pinnacle of mechanical technology in my opinion. Everything else has been worse since then with an emphasis on fancy electronics and an app based experience. Any well maintained car from this time will be on the road longer than whats been built in the last 15 years. That's just my experience as a professional technician anyway.

That's a cool plan. I do like my 5-speed trans alright and the clutch kit I put in it makes for a better experience. The car has consistently been a 40+mpg champ, so I don't want to do anything to hinder that. The taller final drive means faster acceleration, but higher rpm at all times and speeds, thus sucking more fuel. I did that on my C5 vette and really enjoyed the outcome in performance though. My biggest complaint about this car is the lack of power obviously. Still talking a hard look at forced induction or even a cheap nitrous setup. It about a $600 setup to get a wet nitrous kit on it. But not having the power all the time would be kinda lame.. Turbo setup is at least 3-4 grand to do right. Sucks.
 

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By now I see that there are no enthusiasts left in this part of the forum. But I'm still into this car and liking it more and more. It's almost a relic at this point because no one see them anymore. I'm surprised by the attention it gets after my mods. I am really wishing it had more power now because it is still a dog slow car. I'm very tempted to do a 50 shot of nitrous, or maybe even a JDM SR16VE w/ 6 speed swap. ECU and all. Nitrous is the cheapest route and can give it that extra kick when I need it. But the hassle of filling the tank from time to time. The other benefit is that the car stays stock and fuel efficient when not on the nitrous. Also easy to put my OEM cats back on and pass smog legit for $50 bi-annually.

An engine swap to a Neo VVL SR16 or SR20 would make around 200hp easily rather than the GA16DE's 115. More power than the GA with nitrous. But of course at a way bigger cost and major project. And the SR engines are no where near as economic at any time. The badass factor is still worth it, but at the cost of my daily beater no longer being what it is. I'd end up with another beat around car while I built and messed with it. The car would no longer be smog compliant either.

There is always turbo charging. But again, the GA can't take much and this is way to costly for the power it would make. I feel that similar numbers would be seen from a JDM engine swap and be way more reliable. And those engine's would actually be worth turbocharging in the future for a more crazy setup. However it would be cheaper than a complete swap and the power always there. No bottle filling etc. But no passing smog either.

Seeing if anyone has suggestions or reasons why one way vs the others would be good with all the factors I mentioned considered. Remember, I am a master technician with a shop and all forms of tools at my disposal. Labor isn't a worry. I can research and complete any project.
Man I really appreciate your time on this car I’m about to pick up one today and my goal is the same fun daily that handles well and great on gas
 

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1997 200SX base 5-speed
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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
They can be good cars if maintenance is kept up. I'm proud to have it running well with no leaks. I still use it as my daily beat around car. The SR20DE is a better engine for performance and I feel like the power would be sufficient for the car if I had that engine. The GA16DE is considered better for longevity, fuel economy, and less maintenance though. So I'm happy with it in that aspect. Just wish it had some more power. As a technician I don't mind doing the work, so the SR20 would have been more fun for me. What one are you looking at?
 
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