My ongoing Xterra build thread


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My ongoing first gen Xterra build thread

I have a 2002 Supercharged 5spd manual xterra and it's still pretty stock, mostly been doing a lot of maintenance and little things, but I've got some cool plans in mind for it still, just gotta keep pecking away at the list as finances allow.
Quick run down of what I've done to it in the year and a half I've owned it:
New power steering pump
New brake booster
new distributor
new plugs and wires
Repacked wheel bearings
New brakes
Replaced the Knock sensor
New Valve Cover gaskets
New upstream O2 Sensors
New Cd player
Bandit 4x4 Steering idler arm bushings
Total Chaos Steering Idler arm brace
And I've just ordered a set of Bilsteins for it.

Things I still want to do to it.

New tires - Looking to get some new shoes for this thing in the next couple months
Rebuild the heads - with new lifters and high performance cams...
While I'm doing that I'm gunna throw on a set of headers as well that will really bring the supercharger to life, just waiting for the cats to pack it in to do all that.

Now for some pictures:

The day I got it, the plastic grill was covered in some sort of yellow build up, that I quickly took care of with some elbow grease, wd40 and a (old)dish sponge. I ripped those dumb double mudflaps off as well.

The next thing I did was change out the bad knock sensor, took about 10 hours since I did valve cover gaskets and spark plugs as well (Which ended up being the wrong ones, and I had to change them out again once everything was all assembled)

There I think I was doing my wheel bearings, I wanted to post this to show how much cleaner the grill is now.. Also I had painted the headlight surrounds a darker gray colour.

Just a lame picture of the steering idler arm bushings and brace.

Now I hope this is allowed, I would like to share some of the pictures of my X in its natural environment.

This is out near Carmanah Walbran Provincial park

This was the road to Obstruction point, at Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National park (Great spot definitely recommend everyone to go there)

On the beach at Ocean Shores, Washington

In the Redwoods

Somewhere in Idaho along the clearwater river

Near Nahmint lake on Vancouver Island

The beginning of the Lolo Pass in Montana

Lassen peak, California

Our campsite north of Ft Bragg California.

I'll try to keep on top of what I do to my truck in a timely fashion.
Thanks for looking, questions and comments always welcome
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Happy early birthday to me:D

Im pretty sure these were OEM.

These weren't, but were garbage anyways.

Cutting the rear sway bar free was a bit of a pain but it's gone... what a useless item that was. I have my front sway bar off too, and now with the new shocks its way more tolerable.

I know, I know. Exciting stuff, but it will get better, cheers guys.
Nice upgrades, those shocks will make a big difference. Looks like you've taken your X quite a few places, that's really cool! Welcome to ExPo, and keep on using that thing, it's what they're made for.


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So my engine decided it was tired of being an engine and really wanted to be a sewing machine..

So... in to the shop it goes.

hey look its inside! good thing my toolbox has wheels.

pulled the intake and rads

Recovering the refrigerant, cause im legit like that.

After I dropped the diff she came right out, they sure dont like to give ya anywhere to lift off of though..

Dont be ignoring those P0420/p0430 codes else this will happen to you, seems to me that this cat let go and the debris got scavenged back into the cylinders and took out my rings..

Got er on a stand and ready to strip down

Oh look this first causality.. Bank 2 cam decided to chew on my head a little bit...

Bank 2 head... eew

Bank 1 Head.. pretty normals

Cyl2 and 4 sure had a lot of play in em and they look gross

I'm amazed that cy; 2 and 4 had so much play in the bore yet the cylinder walls looked mint.


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Now we're cookin.. These showed up today, my block and heads are at the machine shop right now and I'm waiting on parts.
hopefully get some new tires soon, and at least ill have the engine to turn em.


Nice headers. What sort of power goals do you have, with the performance cams and these headers? Do you have to go with an aftermarket tune, or with the stock ECU be able to adapt to the increased air flow? I imagine you have some sort of upgraded exhaust in mind too?
Knock sensor it a huge PITA. I did the relocation, but it was getting false knocks, so I've been running the resistor for 6-7 years. The stock ECU isn't tunable. The only option is to getting it reprogrammed by JWT, or go stand-alone. I've got a Megasquirt I'm been waiting to put in mine, along with some laminova cores. Been on the shelf for like 2-3 years :S Regardless, the headers help out a lot. I have some friends with N/A Xterras that notice a big difference, and the plus side is that you get rid of the stock manifolds that like to crack.

JWT also sells cams, but other options are from the Z31 300ZX. I dont know if the N/A has different cams then the S/C, but I think they were stock a 210* cams. I'd like a set of 264*, I think. I haven't really found anyone with swappes cams on a S/C X

I also wouldn't mine some N/A pistons for a bit more compression.
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Nice headers. What sort of power goals do you have, with the performance cams and these headers? Do you have to go with an aftermarket tune, or with the stock ECU be able to adapt to the increased air flow? I imagine you have some sort of upgraded exhaust in mind too?
I had wanted to get cams and such, but the block machining ate up a lot of my money and I didnt feel like spending more.. especially with the CDN dollar going to ****..
Just got the headers to replace the stock cast manifold catalytic converter junk. With fresh piston rings and the headers it hauls pretty good now.


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Ok, so about 6 weeks ago my engine quit on me.. I've been buy rebuilding my engine and this weekend I fired it up for the first time and have since taken it on a 350km cruise and already done the initial oil change... everything's looking good!

Ill post a few pic and talk a bit about anything I can add to them..

The empy hole

Engines on stand, start of tear down

Eew.. real sloppy too. the walls were worn 11 thou over spec as well, although there werent any signs of scoring or anything. and only the bank 2. bank 1 was fine.

Bank 2 head

Bank 1 Head

Bank 1 Cylinders

Jeesh what a mess..

Just a pic of the cylinder walls

Con rod bearings


Oooo Shiny.

This stupid plug got caught on a comealong chain had to wire up a new connector... Dentistry tools FTW

Supercharger Rebuild!

Better than new

Oh boy, now thats its been 5 weeks since I took it apart lets hope I remember where every bolt goes.

Crank install.

Mhm fresh pistons.

Plopped them all in without issue.

The little mark on the piston goes to the front. the machine shop had to bore it over to the first oversize which is +0.5mm, they did a real nice job actually.

It's actually rather difficult to get good pics on a project like this. my fingers were always way to dirty to operate any electronics..

Blower is back on

and back into its home it goes

New clutch components new coolant hoses, new timing belt new oil pump and headers in addition to full engine rebuild.
Its so nice knowing that everything in my engine is good for once and not wondering how much longer i have..
having seen the condition that my clutch was in i suspect I would have had to pull my engine this winter anyways..

Now all that I want are some bigger tires still and maybe a new exhaust to complement the headers which sound great and Im very happy with..

Actually another thing I want to do is Electric cooling fans.
anyways thats it for now