I've had my titled truck for almost three years. Here's the story:
I bought a janky house, scored a good deal on a cool chameleon d21, and learned how to fly a paramotor. Everything was going great! Then I got a dog. A big-*** doodle dog. He's a daily shop creature who quickly outgrew the single cab in that little d21.
Winter came and I had forgotten that the little truck needed a new heater core. Have I mentioned I'm in Indiana? We have winter. That was a terribly frustrating job in the bitter cold and the dashboard was completely roached. I began to sour on the little truck.
I also began fantasizing about driving long distance to fly. That would require something with a few more creature comforts and more power than the mini-truck and mighty ka24e had to offer.
One of my worst habits is browsing Craigslist. It's cost me thousands of dollars and hours upon hours of frustration. I had decided to shop for Frontiers since I'm not a big dude, don't want a big truck, and I guess I'm a Nissan guy by the number of s12s I've owned + the hardbody. Problem was, all the Frontiers were out of my price range and I don't do auto loans.
After talking myself out of a lifted and boosted Honda CRV (it was really cool - wish I had a picture), I kept shopping and finally stumbled across this truck about an hour and a half away from my house. I think the listing was $8,700 which was still well outside my price range. Normally I would have let it slide and kept shopping and saving, but on a whim I decided to offer my little truck in trade + basically all my cash.
Surprisingly, the guy said yes. He was trying to eliminate a car payment and still wanted a truck in the fleet. He even agreed to meet halfway. My little d21 made the drive down some backroads to a gas station where I handed over the keys and all the cash I owned. Here's the truck fueling up for the drive home. 4x4, 5 speed, short bed with a rebuilt title.121,000 miles. It's the newest and nicest vehicle I've owned.
It's been reliable as heck and I've enjoyed doing little things that make it a lot better. I even towed for my first time a few weekends back. It went well enough except for the obvious lack of power on the highway. Frontier isn't pictured but I promise it's connected to that trailer.
I've told myself a million times that I'm going to leave this truck alone, and to a large extent I have. I've changed the oil, spark plugs, head lights, added speaker, subwoofer, remote start, tonneau cover, new tires, replaced a door hinge, window motor, dashboard LEDs, reverse light switch, backup camera..... and I think that's it.
However!! I am a fool. After towing with the truck it has become clear that I will no longer be able to leave it alone. I had been passively shopping down this path for some time, and I don't want to consider a new truck right now. It also seems that Nissan doesn't make the shorty 4x4 crew cab 5 speed Frontier in the configuration I'm after. Or if they did, it's in limited numbers. I like everything about this truck except for its juice.
I lowballed a seller a week or two ago just to pretend that I tried and maybe buy myself another year or two of stock goodness. Then, this popped up for almost the same price as my lowball -- including shipping.
So the plan is to get this motor, tear it down, and have the parts ready to go onto my truck whenever my convertible is back on the road. I understand the differences between my motor and the supercharged motor but I'm not too worried about it. Seems like enough people have done it without blowing up their NA motors. I'll use the SC injectors and hope for the best. If it does go poorly I'll have a backup engine.
The main thing pushing me to use the original motor is an inability to find a 4x4, manual, supercharged ECU. Again, if Nissan made any in that configuration it wasn't in large numbers. I would love it if somebody could prove me wrong and provide a part number for an ECU that will work with the truck I'm hoping to build.
Right now I've got a tracking number and a dream. This project may not officially kick off for a couple months or even years, but I've been lurking this forum enough to make an account and an introduction.
Glad to meet y'all. This forum has helped me a bunch already.