JDM fans - is an Infiniti J30t worth resurrecting?


Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

Some of you may remember my ex-wife Florence, who accompanied me on some Arcane adventures back 10-15 years ago. She passed away recently, and though her daughters are handling her affairs there are a few things I need to deal with. One of them is her daughter's 1993 (?) Infiniti J30t, which was a very nice car when we bought it but was predictably abused and neglected in normal teenage-driver fashion. It's been parked at my property in Ben Lomond for twelve or thirteen years now. It had multiple electrical problems and ran roughly last time I tried to start it, which has been a number of years ago now. I will have to deal with DMV bureaucracy to do anything with it, as the car was in Florence's name only. From the few examples I have seen on Craigslist, it seems the value of a nice clean one is only a few grand, so I had planned to just send it to Pick'n'Pull whenever I can get the title stuff sorted out. Before I do that though, I want to check with this group if anyone who is better plugged into the JDM scene can tell me if I should try to do something more productive with it.  Thanks for any input!

Best,

Geoff Kirkpatrick


Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

I should mention it is on non-op, so back DMV fees are not an issue.


Tom Rymes
 

On 04/26/2021 2:55 PM, BritCarNut via groups.io wrote:
Some of you may remember my ex-wife Florence, who accompanied me on some Arcane adventures back 10-15 years ago. She passed away recently, and though her daughters are handling her affairs there are a few things I need to deal with. One of them is her daughter's 1993 (?) Infiniti J30t, which was a very nice car when we bought it but was predictably abused and neglected in normal teenage-driver fashion. It's been parked at my property in Ben Lomond for twelve or thirteen years now. It had multiple electrical problems and ran roughly last time I tried to start it, which has been a number of years ago now. I will have to deal with DMV bureaucracy to do anything with it, as the car was in Florence's name only. From the few examples I have seen on Craigslist, it seems the value of a nice clean one is only a few grand, so I had planned to just send it to Pick'n'Pull whenever I can get the title stuff sorted out. Before I do that though, I want to check with this group if anyone who is better plugged into the JDM scene can tell me if I should try to do something more productive with it.  Thanks for any input!
Best,
Geoff Kirkpatrick
Geoff,

I have a J30, and there are definitely folks out there that are interested in these cars. If you forward some photos, perhaps I can put them out in the groups I know to see if there's anyone looking for one of these cars.

They're capable RWD beasts with four-wheel steering on the "t" models, and a driveline shared with the 300ZX, more or less, so there's a lot to love. Unfortunately, they still haven't caught on, just yet.

With a little more detail, I might be able to find someone willing to save it, or at least make sure that the parts stay in the community instead of getting crushed after a short while at the pick-n-pull.

Tom


Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

Thanks Tom, I'll take some photos next time I'm there.


Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

Hi Tom, here are some photos of the Infiniti I took today. It's got a dent on the trunk lid but is otherwise pretty straight. I don't think it has any major mechanical issues. The problems were primarily electrical and I think ignition-related. Last time I started it up, the sound system was producing an earsplitting wail that I couldn't shut off. It makes the car undriveable, at least for me, as it's probably dangerously loud. When we bought the car, the owner was proud of the high-end factory sound system he had taken pains to maintain. Now it's clearly messed up in some major way.

Best,

Geoff


David Russel
 

Somewhere there is a Silence fuse— remove the fuse and blissful silence is turned on. 
;-)

David 

Sent From Mobile Phone

On Apr 27, 2021, at 4:47 PM, Geoff Kirkpatrick via groups.io <britcarnut=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:

Hi Tom, here are some photos of the Infiniti I took today. It's got a dent on the trunk lid but is otherwise pretty straight. I don't think it has any major mechanical issues. The problems were primarily electrical and I think ignition-related. Last time I started it up, the sound system was producing an earsplitting wail that I couldn't shut off. It makes the car undriveable, at least for me, as it's probably dangerously loud. When we bought the car, the owner was proud of the high-end factory sound system he had taken pains to maintain. Now it's clearly messed up in some major way.

Best,

Geoff
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Tom Rymes
 

On 04/27/2021 7:47 PM, Geoff Kirkpatrick via groups.io wrote:
Hi Tom, here are some photos of the Infiniti I took today. It's got a dent on the trunk lid but is otherwise pretty straight. I don't think it has any major mechanical issues. The problems were primarily electrical and I think ignition-related. Last time I started it up, the sound system was producing an earsplitting wail that I couldn't shut off. It makes the car undriveable, at least for me, as it's probably dangerously loud. When we bought the car, the owner was proud of the high-end factory sound system he had taken pains to maintain. Now it's clearly messed up in some major way.
Thanks, Geoff. At some point this probably ought to migrate off the Arcane list. Those Bose radios are excellent when in good condition, but at this point are tough to keep working well. I had mine repaired recently, but most replace them with modern units (which I just cannot stand). Nothing money can't fix!

I'll put some info out there and see what pops up for interest.

Tom


Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

I've cleaned the Infiniti up a bit and have attempted to start it, without success. It cranks nicely but there's nothing resembling an attempt at catching. I'm not accustomed to working on cars that have fuel injection, coil packs, ECUs, and all that newfangled stuff from the 1980s on up. It's been at least seven or eight years since the car last ran. Is there perhaps some priming of the fuel pump or the injection system needed? Are there any other "Semi-Modern cars for Idiots" suggestions for where I might look? I'm torn on what to do with this car. It turns out it was never put on non-op so the DMV wants $700+ if someone should try to register it. Its market value even if it's up and running is negligible. But it's fundamentally a nice and rather rare car. The title is lost and I'm on my own, having to do a lien sale just to get the title so I can dispose of it somehow. 


Bruce Dewing
 

Geoff,
Have you tried using ether spray?  Have you done a compression test?
Bruce

On Sunday, June 27, 2021, 12:14:42 PM PDT, Geoff Kirkpatrick via groups.io <britcarnut@...> wrote:


I've cleaned the Infiniti up a bit and have attempted to start it, without success. It cranks nicely but there's nothing resembling an attempt at catching. I'm not accustomed to working on cars that have fuel injection, coil packs, ECUs, and all that newfangled stuff from the 1980s on up. It's been at least seven or eight years since the car last ran. Is there perhaps some priming of the fuel pump or the injection system needed? Are there any other "Semi-Modern cars for Idiots" suggestions for where I might look? I'm torn on what to do with this car. It turns out it was never put on non-op so the DMV wants $700+ if someone should try to register it. Its market value even if it's up and running is negligible. But it's fundamentally a nice and rather rare car. The title is lost and I'm on my own, having to do a lien sale just to get the title so I can dispose of it somehow. 


Ken Nelson
 

Another thought Geoff - have you pulled a plug cable, stuck another plug in it and laid it on a grounding point on the engine to see if it sparks when ENG is cranked?  If it sparks then spraying brakekleen in air inlet should get it to fire.   Beyond that maybe injectors aren’t working or fuel pump.  

Ken


On Jun 27, 2021, at 7:29 PM, Bruce Dewing via groups.io <tralfaz42@...> wrote:

Geoff,
Have you tried using ether spray?  Have you done a compression test?
Bruce

On Sunday, June 27, 2021, 12:14:42 PM PDT, Geoff Kirkpatrick via groups.io <britcarnut@...> wrote:


I've cleaned the Infiniti up a bit and have attempted to start it, without success. It cranks nicely but there's nothing resembling an attempt at catching. I'm not accustomed to working on cars that have fuel injection, coil packs, ECUs, and all that newfangled stuff from the 1980s on up. It's been at least seven or eight years since the car last ran. Is there perhaps some priming of the fuel pump or the injection system needed? Are there any other "Semi-Modern cars for Idiots" suggestions for where I might look? I'm torn on what to do with this car. It turns out it was never put on non-op so the DMV wants $700+ if someone should try to register it. Its market value even if it's up and running is negligible. But it's fundamentally a nice and rather rare car. The title is lost and I'm on my own, having to do a lien sale just to get the title so I can dispose of it somehow. <IMG_9859.JPG><IMG_9856.JPG><IMG_9855.JPG><IMG_9854.JPG><IMG_9853.JPG>
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Geoff Kirkpatrick
 

Thanks all for the suggestions. I will try the ether idea. The car has individual coil packs, not a distributor with plug cables, so I'm not sure if the spark plug test works with this system. At first I tried starting the car on the old gas in the tank, then thought better of it. I bought a fancy siphon on Amazon and used it to drain the old, very stinky gas, then added a couple of gallons of fresh fuel. Matt also gave me input about checking the in-tank fuel pump and disconnecting the fuel rail to see if it sprays fuel when cranked. Worst case, I can get all new injectors, coil packs, and a fuel pump for about $350 online so if I get ambitious I may go that route. I just kind of feel bad about sending the car to the junkyard for what is almost certainly a repairable fault. Thanks all for the information!


Fred Cisin
 

Is that car new enough to have OBD?


Before you start replacing parts that don't have anything wrong with them, . . .

On some cars, an inductive triggered timing light will tell you whether the plug wires are "firing".

A compression test will tell you if stuck valve(s) are the problem.

If it is ALMOST starting, then a volatile spray, such as "starting fluid", or even just spray carburetor cleaner, can fire under marginal conditions.

And, of course, hook up a battery charger. It might not seem like it needs it, but "modern" cars sometimes will crank with no start if the voltage drops below a threshold. Automotive computers can be picky about voltage. A friend bought an "irreparable" almost new VW Squareback (from a dealer!) for a few hundred dollars that didn't need anything more than a stronger battery to get the voltage up a little more!


--
Grumpy Ol' Fred cisin@xenosoft.com


Ken Nelson
 

Yrs ago I learned from Matt Spielberg on Twin Peaks that good old brakekleen is a terrific tester for spraying in a carb or air intake to see if an engine will fire - who needs real starter fluid??  He got a Merc running and I think it was Byron Brill's car or Maras that Matt got running on that trip with just that stuff.  
Plus, Geoff, even coil on plug ignition should be testable by just pulling the plug with its coil out and connecting the plug base to ground to see if you get spark, and if one plug fires, the others should be ok.  The inductive timing light test should also be good and easier to do -

Ken

On Mon, Jun 28, 2021 at 5:20 PM Fred Cisin <cisin@...> wrote:
Is that car new enough to have OBD?


Before you start replacing parts that don't have anything wrong with them,
. . .

On some cars, an inductive triggered timing light will tell you whether
the plug wires are "firing".

A compression test will tell you if stuck valve(s) are the problem.

If it is ALMOST starting, then a volatile spray, such as "starting
fluid", or even just spray carburetor cleaner, can fire under marginal
conditions.

And, of course, hook up a battery charger.  It might not seem like it
needs it, but "modern" cars sometimes will crank with no start if the
voltage drops below a threshold.  Automotive computers can be picky about
voltage.  A friend bought an "irreparable" almost new VW Squareback (from
a dealer!) for a few hundred dollars that didn't need anything more than a
stronger battery to get the voltage up a little more!


--
Grumpy Ol' Fred                 cisin@...