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'84 Maxima Road rally advice


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#1 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 22 February 2015 - 10:54 AM

I have an 84 Maxima that I am fixing up for a $500 car/500 mile rally this summer in Oregon. Course is a mix of paved roads, gravel, and then some tough patches on rutted dirt fire roads

I want to raise the car, but don't have any experience with suspension work. I changed the front rotors and pads, that is about the extent of my mechanical prowess to date. I was wondering if anybody had any specific recommendations on shocks/springs.

Also, I have my eye on a set of 4x114.3 15" 300zx wheels with nice used 215/60/R15s. HRH said in PM that he thought they would work, but I want to see if anybody has actually run something that wide in a maxima- i have searched through the forums and it seems like 205/60/R15s will work, but I am wondering about the extra 10mm in the front especially.

Car is in the process of getting a japanese dragon painted on it. I put that '79 810 steering wheel on it too. I am obviously not a serious gearhead, so will not be offended by some dumbed down advice :). Thanks!

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#2 datzenmike

datzenmike
  • Location:Vancouver Island
  • Cars:'74 710 sedan, '76 710. prevoius... '78 620, '71 521, '68 510 new '76 B-210

Posted 22 February 2015 - 12:28 PM

Welcome to Ratusn, Racco. Here's your pictures so everyone can see them.

 

 

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I like the rims you have now so don't throw them away.

 

 

Why the 300zx rims? You can get wider tires on your rims you have now. I would get the zx rims if you want for later, but put taller tires on the rims you have to raise it. Go to a tire store and look in the pile out back or maybe they have some that were traded in? Look for 4 tires that match and are better treaded for off road rather than wider. What size tire is on it now???

 

Are you thinking of lightening your car?


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#3 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 22 February 2015 - 01:18 PM

Thanks for the reply. I was looking at the 300zx rims because they have an 80% set of pirellis on them and they are 15" rather than the stock 14". I thought the wider tires would look cool too, but maybe would make it squirrely-er int he ruts. I like your idea of taller tires on the stock rims though (because they are cool too, and in good shape). Maybe a light truck tire. Current tires are the stock 185/70/R14.

Acceleration and quick manuevering isn't too important for this event so I am not concerned about the weight, although it wouldn't hurt to shave some. HRH's Ugly Betty thread make it pretty clear how that could be accomplished. The main thing is to make the car reliable and toughen it up for the rough stuff. Looking good and sounding good is my goal too.

#4 datzenmike

datzenmike
  • Location:Vancouver Island
  • Cars:'74 710 sedan, '76 710. prevoius... '78 620, '71 521, '68 510 new '76 B-210

Posted 22 February 2015 - 01:35 PM

185/70/R14s are 24.2" diameter and 7.28" wide

215/60R15s are 25.16" diameter and 8.46" wide... roughly an inch taller and wider, not really a clear advantage.

Being 15" instead of 14" rim doesn't really matter much except maybe for tire choices. Otherwise the rim is 1 inch taller but the tire height is less by this amount. A 190/75R14 would be the same diameter as a 215/60R15.


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#5 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 22 February 2015 - 02:53 PM

That makes sense. Seems like a combination of taller tires and longer/stiffer springs would be ideal. With my limited knowledge, the only struts that I know would work would be stock replacement, which I guess I could put spacers in, but wondering if there are other options.

#6 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 23 February 2015 - 09:30 PM

C'mon guys, don't make me go to a Subaru forum! Those guys are weird.

#7 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 23 February 2015 - 09:45 PM

And I promise to slam it after July. All I want is 2".

#8 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 28 February 2015 - 09:09 AM

Like this:
http://m.imgur.com/gallery/UzAgbwk

#9 datzenmike

datzenmike
  • Location:Vancouver Island
  • Cars:'74 710 sedan, '76 710. prevoius... '78 620, '71 521, '68 510 new '76 B-210

Posted 28 February 2015 - 11:02 AM

You won't get that. Those are extremely long travel suspensions to absorb the punishing bumps.

 

I would remove the springs and cut some of the coil off. This will increase the spring rate (stiffness) There are formulas for working the amount out. Then I would stack rubber spacers under the spring to raise it the 2" you want plus that lost by cutting. Stiffer and higher.

 

The stock spring rate ('84 wagon) is about 145 lb/in. Removing one active coil should get you near 200 lb./in.


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#10 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 03 March 2015 - 01:45 PM

It is counterintuitive that the springs would get stiffer as they got shorter. Seems like they would get...well, just shorter. But the internet confirms it. We'll see, I have some time... would like to find an option that doesn't decrease the travel. As far as tires go, I see that the vw vanagon crowd uses the 195/75/14s, so I am watching out for a used set of those with all-terrain tread to use on the stock rims - glad you steered me away from new wheels.



#11 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 07 March 2015 - 04:42 PM

Dragon is done
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#12 captaingamez

captaingamez
  • Location:Phoenix, Arizona.
  • Cars:2002 civic si, 1984 Nissan Maxima 910.

Posted 12 March 2015 - 11:20 AM

Sweet project. One of the few that are the same color as mine. Good luck. Your maxima should make that 500 mile rally no problem



#13 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 12 March 2015 - 07:59 PM

She gets new front shock inserts this weekend. Ball joint dust boots are completely gone. I am wondering if I can get away with new boots, or if I should replace the control arms/ball joints.

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#14 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 22 March 2015 - 07:30 AM

Houston, we have more higher. In the front. And a fresh set of KYB inserts. In case anybody else ever wants to lift an 84 Maxima (which will be never) here is one way:

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Ride effex spring spacer with bottom spring channel cut off on the bottom of the spring. Pics of the car when I get some good ones. Yes it looks goofy. Next for some stiffer springs for the back and maybe taller tires.

#15 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 22 March 2015 - 08:29 AM

Allright, here is before/after. Subtle, but it will help.
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#16 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 02 May 2015 - 09:50 AM

So I replaced the rear springs with '81 mercedes 300D front springs with 3-3/4 coils cut, which makes the rear perhaps 1-1/2" higher and stiffer than sh*t. Ride is rough rough but very stable on corners and bottoming out is no longer really possible. Check out how much thicker the mercedes springs compared to the stock:

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Those are 205/60s on the back with a more aggresive offset. I think that once the rally is over, I will cut another coil off the rear and run with those, and something similar on the front. Stock rims go to the tire place today to get a set of near-new blizzak studless snows from CL. 195/70s for the rear and stock 185/70s for the front. If the rears fit without rubbing (may have to roll the fenders) that will be the rally setup.

#17 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 23 May 2015 - 08:35 AM

Blizzaks are on- offroad ready! See you at Canby!
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#18 HRH

HRH

Posted 21 June 2015 - 09:32 AM

Ah hah!  I DID see you at Canby, but only for a short while.  I noticed the height difference but didn't check this thread.  The height may work but you need to slot the rear control arms to get the camber away from extreme positive.



#19 ]2eDeYe

]2eDeYe
  • Location:Marysville, WA
  • Cars:78 620 KC, 77 620 KC, 72 CJ5, 04 G35 coupe mmmm

Posted 22 June 2015 - 07:30 AM

Looks great, love the lift tech. :cool: 

 

 

In addition to the rear camber, your front camber likely needs adjustment as well. Some camber plates up front maybe. 


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#20 Rakko

Rakko
  • Location:Portland
  • Cars:'84 Maxima

Posted 29 June 2015 - 08:53 AM

I am not going to worry about the positive camber due to the lift. The Blizzaks will be toast anyway after 500 miles on/offroad in July, and it handles just fine for my purposes (This race is a far cry from autocross).

 

I'll take out the spacers and cut down the rear springs if she survives the race. Ok, WHEN she survives the race (got to visualize success).