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rb26det/tt s15. What does it entail? Casual discussion thread 

rb26 conversion silvia engine swap custom
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Poll: RB26dett in the S Chassis??

RB26dett in the S Chassis??

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#1 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 01 April 2013 - 08:02 PM

So, I have been enjoying my s15 very much lately, and I’m quite happy with the awesome little sr20det unit but I got to thinking late one night while on Google about people swapping the iconic straight 6 rb26dett into the s chassis cars. Did some research but didn’t turn up any concrete reading material or opinions.

If I was to spend 7-10 thousand on the sr20det over x period of time and aim for around 240-50ish rwkw would you think it’s a better idea to just put that sort of money toward an engine swap that is putting out similar power in its stock oem form? As opposed to spending money modifying an engine to reach said power level but hinder its life and reliability/driveability in the process?

As the topic says, this is just for general talking/chat/opinions. Try to keep the hate between each other to a minimal ^_^

What would you say is involved for the diy man to do such a conversion himself if they had access to friends with welding skills, good knowledge on the Nissan engines and mechanics etc. and was to leave tuning and final set up to a reputable shop? What parts, components, custom work, tools would be required? For a street car, how would you go about engineering it, insurance?

Thanks everyone, hope we can get a good, knowledge filled thread going here. I’m sure many Nissan enthusiasts would enjoy a read. Cheers :thumb:

Edited by revhead90, 03 April 2013 - 06:20 PM.


#2 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 01 April 2013 - 08:09 PM

ergh, go a 25 neo with a 30/76 and supporting mods. all the same shit involved as fitting an rb into either a s13/14

#3 scott black

  • Joined:31-March 12
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:180sx w/ RB25

Posted 01 April 2013 - 08:43 PM

engineering, talk to an engineer, custom work, very little, just wiring and fans really, parts required, a fair bit, be just as easy to go rb25, sure with a 26 u have a bit more bonnet clearance without the cross over pipe on top of the engine, yet then you need to mod sump to get rid of the diff, (or just by the adapter plate and get a 25 sump)
then you need x memeber, mounts, r33 box, uncut loom, radiator, tailshaft, a few other little bits and peices, pretty simple all in all

#4 davlos

  • Joined:14-August 09
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:180sx White 94

Posted 01 April 2013 - 08:46 PM

You don't need to spend 7 - 10k on an sr for 250kw, more like 3 - 4k and it's less effort than an rb swap.

Don't let me put u off tho. Rb's r excellent motors.

#5 harris.

  • Joined:01-June 04
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:180sx SR POWWAAAHH

Posted 01 April 2013 - 09:24 PM

View Postdavlos, on 01 April 2013 - 08:46 PM, said:

You don't need to spend 7 - 10k on an sr for 250kw, more like 3 - 4k and it's less effort than an rb swap.

Don't let me put u off tho. Rb's r excellent motors.

this.. unless your deadset on the RB and are keen to spend silly monies just pump the cash into the SR.. how much power have you got now?

#6 R32GTRS

  • Joined:24-August 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:RB25 R32gtst

Posted 01 April 2013 - 09:52 PM

I think you should go back to google and read about how much rb26detts can actually cost, not just a front cut either. MUCH better options out there for the average punter imo.

Edited by R32GTRS, 01 April 2013 - 09:53 PM.


#7 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 01 April 2013 - 10:16 PM

I suggested rb26 because it’s the ultimate in its platform. I know you could spend much less on an rb25 or rb20 so I though I may as well base the topic around the extreme end of the straight 6 Nissan platform. haven’t even begun to look at the Toyota jz platform.. And I’m assuming v8's.. Not road legal because they exceed the engine displacement to chassis ratio or something??

As a weekend car for the average Joe that doesn’t have squillions to blow on car mods I would be looking at an rb25. For either variant you would be looking at doing the following yeah:

View Postscott black, on 01 April 2013 - 08:43 PM, said:


engineering, talk to an engineer, custom work, very little, just wiring and fans really, parts required, a fair bit, be just as easy to go rb25, sure with a 26 u have a bit more bonnet clearance without the cross over pipe on top of the engine, yet then you need to mod sump to get rid of the diff, (or just by the adapter plate and get a 25 sump)
then you need x memeber, mounts, r33 box, uncut loom, radiator, tailshaft, a few other little bits and peices, pretty simple all in all


What other options are out there then for the average punter, engine swap wise?

At the moment my car is stock, bar the turbo back exhaust the previous owner fitted. With 3-4k (as mentioned above) what would you do to the sr then to make the most of it while maintaining reliability? Ecu, injectors, front mount, electric boost controller, turbo, bov, waste gate, exhaust, maf...How much would you invest in an rb swap?

#8 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 01 April 2013 - 10:25 PM

honestly, a 26 isn't as good as you make it out to be. what do you want out of the engine swap?

26 is like 2.5 to 3k for an average example, plus sump mods, clutch and 25 box is another 1.5 to 2k plus fuel pump, intercooler and piping, radiator and fans, tailshaft, wiring etc. allow 10 and you might get 200rwkw with the stock computer

with the coin you are spending i'd be spending that on suspension/wheel/tyre/brake upgrades before doing anything else.


#9 endlss

  • Joined:19-June 06
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:350z/LS1

Posted 01 April 2013 - 10:42 PM

Do it, i dont care what anyone says, ive owned every combination of S chassis out there from 13 to 15, ca to rb26 and this car was by far the most menacing thing ive ever driven or owned, still kick myself every single day for letting it go after pouring the effort and time and money into it that i did

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#10 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 01 April 2013 - 10:57 PM

i put one in a patrol haha

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#11 The Big Fist

  • Joined:10-December 12
  • Location:Australia WA
  • Car:s15

Posted 01 April 2013 - 11:57 PM

For $7-10K you're better off building the sr20. Blingcommander is on the money.
Friends and I put an RB26 into an R34 gt-4 over christmas. By the time you include the front cut, sump mods (we didn't need to do any obviously), harness work, mounts etc, it just won't be worth it unless you don't mind spending more money.
Personally I would go the v8 option. My GTO has over 250rwkw on just a tune. To get one with gearbox, new clutch, cam and head work, brake mods, exhaust, fitting kit you would be looking at $13K to do it properly. You can push these engines easily, but if you aren't interested in v8's it's not a viable option.

VSB14, 5 x car weight = recommended engine size in CC, so up to 6.1L
Doesnt cost anything to ask an engineer for costs and what he would want done.

For what it's worth, I am sticking with the SR20 in my s15.

#12 R32GTRS

  • Joined:24-August 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:RB25 R32gtst

Posted 02 April 2013 - 07:08 AM

View Postblingcommander, on 01 April 2013 - 10:25 PM, said:

honestly, a 26 isn't as good as you make it out to be. what do you want out of the engine swap?

26 is like 2.5 to 3k for an average example, plus sump mods, clutch and 25 box is another 1.5 to 2k plus fuel pump, intercooler and piping, radiator and fans, tailshaft, wiring etc. allow 10 and you might get 200rwkw with the stock computer

with the coin you are spending i'd be spending that on suspension/wheel/tyre/brake upgrades before doing anything else.

yep and thats just if nothing goes wrong with the engine itself.

#13 WPN-X7

  • Joined:20-November 05
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:LS1 FC vert

Posted 02 April 2013 - 07:42 AM

View PostR32GTRS, on 02 April 2013 - 07:08 AM, said:

View Postblingcommander, on 01 April 2013 - 10:25 PM, said:

honestly, a 26 isn't as good as you make it out to be. what do you want out of the engine swap?

26 is like 2.5 to 3k for an average example, plus sump mods, clutch and 25 box is another 1.5 to 2k plus fuel pump, intercooler and piping, radiator and fans, tailshaft, wiring etc. allow 10 and you might get 200rwkw with the stock computer

with the coin you are spending i'd be spending that on suspension/wheel/tyre/brake upgrades before doing anything else.

yep and thats just if nothing goes wrong with the engine itself.

yep. factor in another 10k for when the oil pump shits itself and grenades the motor haha

#14 Wizard

  • Joined:09-February 10
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:Moneypit

Posted 02 April 2013 - 07:47 AM

The unstated problem with rebuild vs. different motor, is that you get a used different motor. There's a few guys that have swapped in an unbreakable 1JZ and one of the stock turbos failed on the dyno and lunched the motor.

#15 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 02 April 2013 - 07:49 PM

Hmm, so the consensus is to work on the SR for around 220-40rwkw and save an engine swap for when the SR goes boom (hopefully never!) and if you happen to win the lotto in the same week.

I personally would probably go the RB25det route if my SR went boom. Cheaper to maintain and more parts out there, lower initial parts cost.

Do you think we would be able to compile a complete parts list for those wanting to engine swap an RB25/26 into their s chassis? There seems to be a lot of variances out on the web at the moment when I had a look for parts required/procedure. I’m sure many Nissan owners would find it hugely useful having the info all on one site, and on one page.

Now, the interesting thing is the now more common LS swaps going around. I have read a lot about drift/track Nissan's with LS swaps but not so much about street registered s chassis' with the love/hate LS. Is it legal? What about more of a Nissan purists v8 such as the VH45de/t??? You could also argue that the LS engines are much newer (you even have the option of getting a brand new one in a lovely wooden crate with zero ks) therefor almost removing the problem of purchasing an engine with hidden problems due to a hard past/false ks declared/internal wear so it will be much more reliable and cost less to maintain?

#16 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 02 April 2013 - 08:01 PM

there is all you need to know in the tech articles

#17 scott black

  • Joined:31-March 12
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:180sx w/ RB25

Posted 02 April 2013 - 08:09 PM

there are many lists with many options for the s series rb swaps, and most of the time they all work

Crossmember, r32, r33, possibly r34, a31,
mounts, landcruiser, cortina, nissan, ls1, all depends on clearance on the bonnet you run with manifolds and where you want the motor to sit,
mount brackets generaly chosen to suit the crossmember
engine rb25, rb20, rb26, rb30
gearbox, r32, r33, r34
tailshaft, stock 5 speed or modified to suit gearbox
gearbox cross member, some stock ones, some modifited ones
wiring, loom to suit motor patched into car
clutch, stock rb clutch or not stock, up to you
radiator, can use skyline radiators, or even some silvia ones,
cooling, options to mod radiator suport, custom radiators, thermofans, clutch fans, whatever works realy
intercooler, many ways to pipe and many ways to mount coolers

so many different ways to acheive similar results, its impossible to make a list with every option that works, and its sooo easy to find information on combos that already work


edit : bling said it alot quicker than me lol

Edited by scott black, 02 April 2013 - 08:58 PM.


#18 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 02 April 2013 - 08:40 PM

gtr crossmember won't fit. not even close

#19 scott black

  • Joined:31-March 12
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:180sx w/ RB25

Posted 02 April 2013 - 09:03 PM

yeah, dunno what i was thinking there, not even remotly possible without extensive fab work, and then it has the wrong lca mount to

#20 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 02 April 2013 - 09:05 PM

View Postscott black, on 02 April 2013 - 08:09 PM, said:

there are many lists with many options for the s series rb swaps, and most of the time they all work

Crossmember, r32, r33, possibly r34, a31,
mounts, landcruiser, cortina, nissan, ls1, all depends on clearance on the bonnet you run with manifolds and where you want the motor to sit,
mount brackets generaly chosen to suit the crossmember
engine rb25, rb20, rb26, rb30
gearbox, r32, r33, r34
tailshaft, stock 5 speed or modified to suit gearbox
gearbox cross member, some stock ones, some modifited ones
wiring, loom to suit motor patched into car
clutch, stock rb clutch or not stock, up to you
radiator, can use skyline radiators, or even some silvia ones,
cooling, options to mod radiator suport, custom radiators, thermofans, clutch fans, whatever works realy
intercooler, many ways to pipe and many ways to mount coolers

so many different ways to acheive similar results, its impossible to make a list with every option that works, and its sooo easy to find information on combos that already work


edit : bling said it alot quicker than me lol


Yes, bling gave a nice easy answer :) but it nice that you went to the effort to compile a basic list, it’s all I was after so thanks mate.

So, what about the LS engine hey? Good idea? Car balance? Weight distribution out the window? Insurable for street car? Better option than used Nissan power plant? Gear box and drive line for LS??

#21 big_jeza

  • Joined:04-November 10
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:Silvia S13

Posted 03 April 2013 - 07:22 AM

Ask urself the number one question. Do u want to be different?? Or do u want the same as everyone else s15 sr20.

I said i wanted a 6 banger in my s chassie and wouldnt go back. Dont worrie about power yet. Worrie about how different it is and what u can do.

How long are u planning on having the car also.

Edited by big_jeza, 03 April 2013 - 08:35 AM.


#22 Red_Gem

  • Joined:18-October 04
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:gtr

Posted 03 April 2013 - 09:02 AM

Rb25 is not easier to maintain, or easier to get parts for. In fact I think the SR20 probably has the largest aftermarket offering of parts than any motor that has ever existed (possibly except the 350 chev).

Ask yourself the number one question. Do you like your car to be "different" (rb in an s chassis is nothing different) or do you want to be able to drive it every day with 240rwkw and very minimal failures at that power. Not to mention if there ever was a big failure, another motor is less than $1500

#23 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 03 April 2013 - 06:31 PM

I didn’t say it was easier to maintain than the SR, I was comparing the RB25 to the RB26. I don’t care so much about being different, it’s my car and I want it how I like J couldn’t give a shit if people say "it’s been overdone, saw that same thing last week, bla bla" I want a fun car, that I can enjoy day in day out, that has plenty of power (240-250) for the street, and will be reliable, and maybe something else than the SR when i get tired of it in a years time. I love the s15, have for the past 10 years. Im just worried that il get tired of the power plant and want to move on, but instead of selling the car shape that i have loved since i was 12, why not change it up with a fun engine. Stubbled across an SR20 VET swap before...?

Am I correct in saying that a heavily modded SR will be less reliable than a slightly modded RB25?? Or even a stock/slightly modded v8?? Big factor is, street legal! I don’t want to be hassled by the cops for stupid things like, "sir, why do you have an ls7 with twin high mount turbos, four long pod filters, bonnet cut up, half the front bar missing, and an exhaust with an idle tone loud enough to annoy my deaf elderly next door neighbour"

I want to please myself, and by force, the authorities.

#24 davlos

  • Joined:14-August 09
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:180sx White 94

Posted 03 April 2013 - 06:44 PM

The whole reason sr20's are great is because you can get excellent, reliable power for not much coin. Compare this to a 6 cyl where you have to buy 6 of everything, it adds up a lot quicker.

If you're going to do an engine swap just to chase numbers that the sr can do comfortably then I feel like you're kinda missing the point.

Do your research, do it neat, and dont drive like a dick and you shouldn't have much to worry about. Theres always going to be a trade off between being hassled and owning an import, but you knew that when you started.

#25 blingcommander

  • Joined:05-October 06
  • Location:Japan
  • Car:Scooty-Puff Jr.

Posted 03 April 2013 - 07:08 PM

lol, 6 of everything. injectors... and that is it unless you go pistons and rods haha. sweet logic :rolleyes:

#26 davlos

  • Joined:14-August 09
  • Location:Australia QLD
  • Car:180sx White 94

Posted 03 April 2013 - 07:11 PM

yah I know. imagine a v8

#27 revhead90

  • Joined:15-March 13
  • Location:Australia VIC
  • Car:2002 s15 Spec R GT

Posted 03 April 2013 - 07:24 PM

It’s not so much power chasing for the SR, I’m not going for big numbers, like is said 220-250, its a street car. It’s about keeping the fun factor alive for years to come. And as new engines come out and tech improves there will be even more options. For guys and gals chasing that fun factor now, I’m sure the RB engines will be the go to, I know I would. At the moment I love the s15 as it is. Over the next year I will bump up the power (already spent money on wheels, tyres, coils, suspension arms) then when I get over the feel of the SR or something goes pop, new engine. The discussion here is about engine swaps, not just the BR26.

Imagine something like a German manufactured v8 in an s chassis!!

I know there is HEAPS of work that goes into swapping an engine. Learning about some of the changes that need to be made can also be mentioned in the thread.

#28 R32GTRS

  • Joined:24-August 09
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:RB25 R32gtst

Posted 03 April 2013 - 08:18 PM

If all you want is 250 max, it a mild sr and very reliable. Thats nothing these days. And best of all stock drive line appart from clutch will handle it day in day out. There's many things u need to consider.

#29 Wizard

  • Joined:09-February 10
  • Location:Australia NSW
  • Car:Moneypit

Posted 03 April 2013 - 08:34 PM

Poncams and T518Z, 550cc injectors, nistune, done. SR will still be responsive, you'd be hitting 250kw, and you'd have trouble hiding your erection. Lot of money to swap an engine to do the same power.

#30 Vestiphobia

  • Joined:12-July 10
  • Location:Australia SA
  • Car:S14a

Posted 04 April 2013 - 08:04 AM

Why don't many people put VE heads on SR's?





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