Car wash

We’ve got Hurricane Sandy one the way and I plan to unfurl my new car cover to protect the 320.  First I needed to wash the truck so I’m not grinding all kinds of dust and leaf debris into the paint under the car cover.

Here’s the truck surrounded by the autumn leaves.

The paint looked much improved after washing off the dust.

Gratuitous soapy grille shot:

Nice and clean!

Radiator sent out for re-core

Today I dropped of the radiator to be re-cored.  Last week I tried to take it to a big place down in Baltimore called Cummins Radiator, which has been in business since 1911.  Unfortunately when I got down there it was more of a warehouse selling new radiators with a small office in the back where an older gentleman handled the repairs.  He quoted me a price of $550 for a re-core and assured me that my radiator needed to be re-cored.  When I had my roadster radiator re-cored with a three-row core it was like $200.  Granted, that was a few years ago but I decided to look for alternatives.

I found a place up in York, PA, called West York Radiator Service that seemed to get positive reviews online.  I called them and they said to drop by.  So today, after a pre-school field trip in that general direction, we shot up to York (my wife was thrilled to find out about this) and dropped off the radiator.

The owner, Harry, asked me if I was certain the radiator needed to be re-cored.  I said I wasn’t sure, and he said if it didn’t I could save some money.  After I got home later in the afternoon Harry called and told me the radiator didn’t need a re-core, and he had pressure tested it and found a leak, which he had repaired, and I could come pick it up.  Great!

Fuel pump?

Part of my plan is to replace the fuel pump.  Unfortunately, the 320’s E-1 engine fuel pump is no longer available from Nissan and as far as I can tell, not really available in the aftermarket anymore either.  I did some research and found that the J-series fuel pumps should fit the E-series motor in the 320s, but haven’t been able to chase down one of those yet either.  I’m pretty sure the fuel pump on my engine now is a J-series engine pump.

I’d really rather stick with a mechanical fuel pump if at all possible.  Rebuilding is an option, but I haven’t had any luck finding a rebuild kit.  They are probably out there.

Mike Klotz, in a couple of posts on the Ratsun forums, discovered that the four cylinder Datsun L-series engine, found in 510s and the later 521 trucks has the exact same footprint as the 320 and 520 fuel pump.  Since those vehicles are much more common than the 320 trucks the aftermarket parts support should be considerably higher.  However, the L-series fuel pump is not a direct swap for the J-series, as the arm on the L-pump is much longer than the J-pump.  Mike’s idea was to transplant the arm from the J-pump over to the new L-pump and install the new one.  It should work and is something I plan to attempt if I can’t find a new J-series pump.

Here’s the fuel pump on my truck.  It is a Nikki brand pump but I don’t believe it is the original OEM pump that came on the truck based on its appearance, but a later-style J-series engine fuel pump.

Radiator removal, part 2

Today I finally got back to working on the truck and finished pulling the radiator. Last month I removed the upper hose and mounting bolts.

The lower hose was too stubborn to pull off the water pump outlet, so I used my utility knife to slit it. Coolant!

Last time I was worried that the engine and cooling system had been dry, but the coolant flowed out and into the drain pan I had stationed underneath.

With the lower hose liberated, I was able to pull the radiator up and out of the engine bay.

I lifted the radiator out and put it in the pan to drain.

Here are the mounting bolts. They were of two different sizes, top and bottom, and I suspect they were not the original factory bolts.

I removed the remains of the upper radiator hose from the thermostat housing, first loosening up the hose clamp with a slotted screwdriver.

And then I slit and peeled the hose off the outlet.

And I pulled the upper radiator hose off the thermostat outlet.

The lower hose was still connected to the radiator, as I had freed it from the water pump. I slashed the hose around the radiator inlet and pulled it off by hand.

Here are the two old braided hoses.

Next I wanted to thoroughly flush the cooling system. I attached a gallon water jug to the water pump outlet on the lower end of the system to catch the effluent and held a garden hose to the thermostat outlet at the upper end.

This worked surprisingly well and I was able to flush the coolant out of the system by repeating the process.

Afterwards I captured the coolant from my drain pan as well.

In total I flushed around a gallon and a half of coolant and water from the engine and radiator.  I took the waste coolant to my local landfill where they accept it for disposal.

I tidied up by stuffing some shop towels into the openings in the cooling system to keep out the mice and also to soak up anything that may drip out.

Here is the fan, which is now visible from the front with the radiator removed.

And here is the engine bay on the generator side.

Now that the radiator is removed I plan to send it off to get it inspected and repaired or re-cored.