'90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

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Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

'90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » November 21st, 2017, 1:23 pm

Hey guys

I've been in the (imports) car scene since about 2009, didn't really get into the East coast car scene when I moved over to Canberra from Perth...still have a lot of my old performance stuff and parts laying around though.
Never owned a 4x4 myself, but been out plenty of times with mates, it was good fun but never really felt the itch to get into it myself.

Almost bought an '87 model earlier this year but missed it...I loved the redneck look of the 2-door models though, so kept my eyes peeled for any others for sale.
Spotted this on GumTree in Melbourne.
Cool color IMO, 2-door but has electrics (power windows, power mirrors) and had some aftermarket goodies, compared to all the other dead stock ones for sale, for about the same price.

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Pros
Z24s with Weber carby
Genie headers
possible aftermarket cam
Decent 31s
Side steps
Bull bar
Roof racks

Cons
Fuel pump wasn't working
Engine bay was a mess,
There was a massive oil spill on the carpet under the passenger seat.
Later found a couple of rust spots

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Headed down to Melbourne with just a backpack of clothes and tools to check it out, I have family in the same area so accommodation was easy.
The seller had it running on an external pump from a jerry can, but when I checked it out, he helped me open the tank and check the pump and wiring, and he towed it to where I was staying for me.
Good bloke :cool:

Ordered a new pump off eBay, and fixed up some little stuff while I was waiting.
Took out some of the unnecessary wiring...including an old sat phone

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Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » November 21st, 2017, 1:27 pm

Had a couple of minor issues on the way home and it was running pretty badly, but made it all the way eventually
Once I was home, the intake and exhaust manifold came off

Found apart 10 different intake/vacuum leaks like this
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Sandblasted the intake, ordered a service kit for the carby, a correct adapter plate, and an air filter for it.
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I found this rust spot while I was digging around inside the brake light access area
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Decided that needed to be fixed up ASAP before rego...fibreglass would do for the time being haha
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Cleaned up the headers with a wire wheel, and coated them with a high temp ceramic paint (& cured)"
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Engine bay starting coming back together, after going way over budget fixing *****
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Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » November 21st, 2017, 1:34 pm

Next was to fix this rusted area at the top of the windshield...I thought it was going to be really bad because water was coming in...once I sanded it back, it turns out there was actually not much rot in there...the water coming in was from a bad seal on a windshield replacement at some point.
In some areas, the old seal was still there, while in other areas it wasn't...

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Cut out, treated and filled the few tiny rust holes I could find, re-sealed the windshield, primed and painted with some color coded cans from SuperCheap

The old carpet didn't look too bad until I pulled it up, the sound deadening stuff was soaked and still had liquid dripping out of it, so I binned all that and bought fresh carpet and under lining.
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Finished tidying up all the electrical mess inside and out. I removed the spotties (front and back) that were on it, some other dodgy *****, installed my own stereo, etc

Around the battery was starting to look at least half presentable now
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Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » November 21st, 2017, 1:51 pm

Got my local mechanic to check it out, tell me what I'd need for a roadworthy pass...
ball joints, shocks etc, which I kind of expected.
Some stuff like the exhaust hitting the gearbox crossmember is going to be a right PITA to sort out but I'll figure it out

They only said front shocks on the list, and I went and accidentally ordered rears...figured I'd just keep them and order fronts as well...rears were pretty shot anyway
Don't want to know how old they were but they were flogged
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Just ordered some eBay cheapies...I figured with planning to do a lift later there wasn't much point in investing in good shocks now.

New ball joints, the old ones were an absolute prick to get out even with a ball joint splitter
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Worked out cheaper to buy a new trailing arm and set of ball joints all-round than to just fix only what was busted.
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Hit up a local wreckers for a bunch of parts that were missing off mine.
Front bash plate, Front recovery point, Steering damper, etc

Gave the wheels and bar a fresh coat of matte black
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Picked one of these up for $20 :D
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So, I just have a few more little bits & pieces to sort out for rego, then I should be all-good

Immediate plates
Add another front recovery point
Find a tow bar (hayman reese)
add air compressor
add recovery tracks
add recovery gear

Further plans
ARB bar
Clean up and paint, or replace side steps
TD27 or VG30 conversion
2" lift

BigDutchy
Need to get out more
Posts: 5040
Joined: November 6th, 2009, 6:58 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by BigDutchy » November 26th, 2017, 9:20 pm

Nice one mate. I like these budget 4WD's. Of course I like a V8 Cruiser but they do not have the charm these old girls have.

cbd
Here and there
Posts: 72
Joined: November 17th, 2017, 7:38 am

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by cbd » November 26th, 2017, 9:34 pm

G'day
I saw the pink colored bog on your rust repair and I could almost smell the sanding dust. Wow brings back memories of rust repairs.
Keep posting your pics, it's a proper hands on rebuild as opposed to a paid custom.
Love your work!
Cbd

hoyks
Avid Poster
Posts: 718
Joined: April 13th, 2003, 9:19 pm
Location: Marburg, QLD

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by hoyks » November 27th, 2017, 11:03 am

I had a Terrano II, newer and more rounded, but most of the running gear was interchangeable with that model.

I replaced the ball joints and they were a pain in the bum. Used a tie rod separator, preloaded it up hit them with hammers, pried with tyre irons, preloaded them more, sprayed with WD40, heated it with the pissy little blow torch I had, but nothing, so then cracked it and went inside to watch TV.

20 minutes later with no one going near it and BANG! and the tapered pin lets go. So that's how I did the other 3. Sprayed WD40, cranked on the separator and did something else for a while.

Mine would eat idler arm bushes too. A roo had clipped the idler arm pivot on the way under the vehicle and it didn't take much of a bend in the shaft for it to chew out bushes. Replacing it was an easy enough job. 3 bolts from memory.

Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » November 28th, 2017, 10:02 pm

BigDutchy wrote:
November 26th, 2017, 9:20 pm
Nice one mate. I like these budget 4WD's. Of course I like a V8 Cruiser but they do not have the charm these old girls have.
Cheers mate
Might have the charm but don't have the torque of a V8 cruiser :(
it's so gutless at the moment haha
cbd wrote:
November 26th, 2017, 9:34 pm
G'day
I saw the pink colored bog on your rust repair and I could almost smell the sanding dust. Wow brings back memories of rust repairs.
Keep posting your pics, it's a proper hands on rebuild as opposed to a paid custom.
Love your work!
Cbd
Haha, there was soo much dust when I sanded that flat for painting...was in everything, my clothes, hair, nose....
I get a pretty good sense of satisfaction fixing dodgy stuff up in every car I've owned, especially electrics...as much as I stress, swear and carry on about other people's dodgy work :rolleyes:

hoyks wrote:
November 27th, 2017, 11:03 am
I had a Terrano II, newer and more rounded, but most of the running gear was interchangeable with that model.

I replaced the ball joints and they were a pain in the bum. Used a tie rod separator, preloaded it up hit them with hammers, pried with tyre irons, preloaded them more, sprayed with WD40, heated it with the pissy little blow torch I had, but nothing, so then cracked it and went inside to watch TV.

20 minutes later with no one going near it and BANG! and the tapered pin lets go. So that's how I did the other 3. Sprayed WD40, cranked on the separator and did something else for a while.

Mine would eat idler arm bushes too. A roo had clipped the idler arm pivot on the way under the vehicle and it didn't take much of a bend in the shaft for it to chew out bushes. Replacing it was an easy enough job. 3 bolts from memory.
I had the same experience with the ball joints....put the separator on, loaded it up, and nothing, even gave it some love taps with a hammer, so I walked away to do something else, and BANG!!! off she came....must've been in there really tight!

I thought these things destroyed idler arms and bushes just because of their weak design...Haven't bent anything myself yet, but have been contemplating a Calmini setup if I do.


I'm having some issues sharing certain images here via PostImage
Getting an error message saying images can be a max of 2000 pixels high, even when trying to embed an image approx 1280 x 720 . . . forum error ?

Flash6
Getting to know the place
Posts: 15
Joined: November 18th, 2017, 9:31 am

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Flash6 » December 2nd, 2017, 2:43 pm

I love these. Imported one from Melbourne to Cambridge in the UK. Good to see you putting the time into it. I bought a qd32 as an engine swap in mine instead of keeping the z24 engine. Sold it in the end but still miss it

Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » December 3rd, 2017, 12:03 am

Flash6 wrote:
December 2nd, 2017, 2:43 pm
I love these. Imported one from Melbourne to Cambridge in the UK. Good to see you putting the time into it. I bought a qd32 as an engine swap in mine instead of keeping the z24 engine. Sold it in the end but still miss it
How much work was it to get the QD32 in?
Did you have to swap the gearbox or any driveline ?

Flash6
Getting to know the place
Posts: 15
Joined: November 18th, 2017, 9:31 am

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Flash6 » December 3rd, 2017, 9:14 am

going from a petrol to a diesel is a nightmare job. And when all was investigated fully I didn't end up putting the QD in it and sold the vehicle and engine as a going project. There were a host of things to consider such as flywheel, engine mounts, wiring (I thought this'd be the easiest of it but was told not) harness. Also told the clutch and gearbox wouldn't last that long with the QD in it... so it turned out to be a much bigger job than I had time for. I do wish I'd followed it through though... not many things get the better of my stubborness but family circumstances mean't that I lost the will on the project.

Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » March 20th, 2018, 9:33 pm

Long time no update.
I had it just about ready to go and get a roadworthy, when I checked the oil, aaaand.

*** Expletive Deleted ***

So that became a thing.
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I did the oil pump, timing chain etc while I was doing that....didn't get pics of that though
Water pump looks like it's been replaced recently so I didn't replace that.
Got a new set of Bosch leads on as well
Finally bought my own torque wrench to get the job done :lol: :lol:
Was pretty nervous starting it up again after all that, but it started and ran pretty well for a second (died out because fuel is stale), big relief.


Found these on eBay...going to put all my wiring through this...headlights, spotties, UHF CB (later), etc
Even bought myself a label maker to add the finishing touches :waycool:
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I ordered some nice battery terminal covers and I'm going to re-do that whole side of the engine bay, it'll be real tidy when I'm done but it's going to be tedious as *my "vocabulary" is so small*

Aaaand, saving the best news for last.
I found a cheap ARB bar with an IronMan 12'000lb winch (plasma rope)...has the battery isolator and all....I need to get an in-cab switch and figure out how to wire that up.
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Got the bar on and run the wiring up into the bay, I'm probably going to do all the terminal ends of it from scratch rather than having it setup how the last owner did...
I've got 2 of the factory recovery hooks now but because of their shape I can only run 1 on the ARB bar...so I might ditch those and get aftermarket recovery points...just can't seem to find them online anywhere...not sure if they're the same as D22 ?

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Next plans

V6 radiator upgrade
New tyres
(by this point it should be reliable AF)
Roadworthy

Find a 2-door Terrano with a sunroof....carry over the good stuff.

Nic_A31
Getting to know the place
Posts: 14
Joined: November 19th, 2017, 12:41 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Nic_A31 » March 27th, 2018, 8:40 pm

Rear bar painted.
I only did minimal prep work, so it isn't going to last long, I might re-do it again later, but for now I just wanted to make it look a bit nicer.

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Ripped out the amp relays for the low and high beams. Now to run them into the box.

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Got the winch power figured out. Need to hunt down a switch to finish that job as well.
Not really in a rush to do the electrics for now, so probably no exciting updates for a little bit.

Matlincoln
I'm new, be nice!
Posts: 4
Joined: June 24th, 2018, 9:19 pm

Re: '90 WD21 Pathfinder - First 4x4 project

Unread post by Matlincoln » June 25th, 2018, 6:35 pm

I had a 93 v6 wd21 a few years back, 4” lift 33”muddies and a front locker thing was an absolute animal. Love these things

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