The polyurethane bushings and the Whiteline swaybar end links are heavy duty so they should make a nice improvement. Got the Powerflex camber bolts for +/- 1.75* adjustment and that'll be good enough to get me going until I can get some camber plates in there later. With the stiffer polyurethane bushings everywhere I'm hoping I can keep my camber negative enough that I can reduce some of the AWD understeer I'm seeing currently. Looking at the Ultra Racing upper strut bar to stiffen up the strut towers/uni-body as well but that can wait a bit to save some money. Still waiting on my Siberian Bushing subframe mounts but they'll arrive shortly in the next week. This weekend I'm going to start stripping down the subframe, swaybar, & steering rack for the repaint/rebuild and swap that back in with the new/reman steering rack, tie rods, whiteline endlinks, polyurethane bushings, & fresh bolts/hardware. Need to order up (4) cans of the VHT Rust Converter for the subframe. Hopefully won't take longer than 1 week.
I placed an order with Bill Kay Nissan for factory RS brake rotor shields, RS control arms, Front L/R wheel hubs, & all mounting bolts/nuts. The front steering knuckles will get media blasted to remove every trace of rust/corrosion and repainted gloss black and that'll save me about $500 as well. Still need to order the SuperPro front control arm bushings ($170). I have to buy a bushing install kit from Amazon and then I can install the SuperPro bushings in the RS control arms which should take a few hours. The 12 ton press should easily be able to handle it. I might tack-weld the bushing sleeves into the control arm to secure them from shifting as I don't like to disturb a press fit joint more than once.
Except for the coilover struts and braking system.........done for performance parts with a couple exceptions. Still need a new condensor core, drier, & radiator core plus radiator hoses. Then I'll have to pull vacuum and recharge the A/C unit which I have the equipment to do so no issue. The upper & lower radiator supports have to be stripped and repainted as they have some slight corrosion. This isn't a show vehicle but I cannot stand rust. The RS front bumper cover might happen later this year/early next. Braking system TBD for a bit and I'm still thinking over the Bilstein B14 vs. BC coilovers but the braking system upgrade happens first and coilovers maybe after the winter. Wheels/tires can wait awhile as I have stock 17's or older aftermarket 18's to get me by for now until I can save up some money for next year.
Mention this in my CVT build thread but I bought additional new OEM internal CVT components from the dealership (2012 Altima application) for my CVT upgrade. That'll replace some refurb parts I previously bought online & installed with brand new OEM components for basically 1/2 the cost. Then there are a couple of additional internal upgrades I'm adding as well to finish out the CVT build. Hopefully that'll be completed in the next 5-6 weeks as I now have all parts ordered to wrap up both project(s).
Yeah, so project is going on 4 years now and basically I have to get most of this project done by this mid-November to get the Juke running/tuned/registered in time for winter season.
Nice find, I was almost tempted last year to buy those. Got mine on sale from Nissan for $188 ea @ 15% off. Spendy but I feel better knowing they are OEM tested by Nissan but it's possible those meet/exceed the factory components.
Here are the subframe bushings from Siberia Bushing CA. Yes they are made in Russia, found that out last minute but their website and distributor is in Canada so I was thinking it was a marketing gimmick.
I don't have a durometer tester but I'd put them at a Shore A 90 durometer. Looks like I'm going to have to hit these with some black paint as they are raw steel. My guess is that they reconditioned some old bushing mounts and shot the new polyurethane onto them and sell them as the upgrade. I'm fine with that for the price but I have to now paint these things which is adding to my list of chores to do. Bought a set of front swaybar bushings which probably I won't use since I have the nicer Powerflex SB bushings instead which have a more street friendly durometer. They did send me a 22mm rear sway bar bushing set so I'll swap that in next year when I get the Stillen AWD rear sway bar upgrade. I had to guess that it's 22mm but they also offer different sizes (i.e. 16, 18mm, et.c) but they are cheap enough I can order another set if needed.
Yeah, so this build is going to really start accelerating now I have basically all the parts needed to finish it for this stage of modification.
Been doing some research and trying to repurpose my older Enkei RSV 18x7.5 (35mm offset) wheels off my Eclipse GSX that have been sitting around for the last 6 years now. The reason here is that my proposed braking package option(s) require extra wheel clearance and my stock 17" wheels won't allow that. These Enkei wheels are very brake clearance friendly but will have to test fit the brakes to confirm.
Anyway, for that car they looked right with a 1-2" drop. On the Juke they just don't look right. I think it's because of the smaller Falken Azenis 25" tire diameter and not having a suspension drop they looked really tiny in the wheel well. The silver color also doesn't work with the Juke though I liked it on the Eclipse. Was thinking of some Yokohama Advan APEX V601 in 225/45/18 size with a 280 AA compound treadwear and 26" diameter to give the tires a little taller look and still maintain a square tire profile stance. These are available from Tirerack for $690 with a $100 online rebate which ends shortly. The taller 45 section tires should help fill out the Juke wheel well and the future suspension drop will definitely correct the small look. Thought here is I unmount the older tires and respray these rims a gloss black and save $1,000 from buying new rims. Or I sell these for a few hundred and go all-in with a wide 18x9 setup and drop $2,000-$2,500 like a mad-crazed fool. Functionally I could be happy with a 225 section wheel/tire combo for the short term.
Kind of working towards getting the Juke track capable and lots of stuff later on such as additional heat-exchangers will help support that. Going to be where I get the vehicle running/registered for this winter then pull it off-line again next spring/summer to get the extra oil coolers, suspension, braking, wheel/tire back on to finish it up.
I'm about to dig into the subframe. The old steering rack has to come out for the reman $200 core refund.
Definitely some corrosion going on near the front subframe under the radiator support, pics to follow. There is some decent rust internaly especially where the welds are that have some bolt/weep holes to access inside. Going to be tricky as the subframe is built in (2) stamped halves and stitch welded together. Ideally I'd break the weld(s) & disassemble and remove the corrosion on both halves, then re-paint with some weldable corrosion inhibitor and reweld it back together. That might be the correct way to restore the subframe I'd imagine but it would be a massive amount of work. Alternatively, I can get a long brass brush inside those holes or add more access holes and brush thru the heavy rust scale/paint and flush all that junk out. Then I can use some diluted Rust Kutter corrosion converter while submerging that part of the subframe in a shallow pan for 8 hours. Need to figure out where to drill extra holes to access the inside of the subframe and use my boroscope camera to inspect the internal corrosion. Eastwood sell a kit used to internally ceramic coat deep/long headers that looks like a long hose with a 360* spray nozzle sprinkler head that would work great to spread a rust converting primer/paint deep inside the subframe to further protect it. Wouldn't be perfect but would work well enough to slow/prevent further internal corrosion and maintain the structural integrity of the subframe. Outside surface(s) I should have no trouble eliminating most of the corrosion with a rotary scotch-brite disc and any remaining rust will get hit with some rust converter and a good primer & top coat and should look brand new. This is going to take me a bit to figure this one out as body work isn't my thing. Otherwise there isn't much corrosion on the Juke except for a few minor spots on the unibody that are easy to access that I can hit with the disc sander and some primer/undercoating and then call it done. Engine bay get's a good pressure washing and it'll look good as new, no time to completely repaint that but I'll see how it goes.
Stock front brake rotors where practically new when I took the vehicle down in 2018. They look like hell sitting for 4 years but I'm going to refinish them using the aluminum oxide media blaster & repaint the hats and internal cooling vanes a high temp black. Since the rotors weren't warped and have full rotor thickness I'll follow up on the rotor surfaces with a 220-320 grit disc sander and see how they feel on the car. This should allow the brake pads to properly bed-in. Little bit of a field fix but this is going to save me $150 I can then put into the upgraded brakes. Not a fan of tossing rusted parts on my car especially with brand new wheel hubs so this has to get done. I'll follow that up with some Centric ceramic brake pads for $44 and some Motul high temp brake fluid. Then I'll install the new brake master cylinder at the same time and also bleed the braking system as best I can.
A bit later on I'll follow up with the front steering knuckle restoration/refurb. That'll start the process of getting the suspension all squared away so the Juke can receive the newly re-built/upgraded engine & CVT transmission but that is about 4-6 weeks away I'm hoping.
I'll take some before/after pics but generally I'd prefer to strip the rust off mechanically where possible. After that the Blaster metal rescue basically just dissolves the rust where it contacts it but doesn't convert it. Then that gets cleaned with Acetone/paint cleaner as best I can. Followed by the VHT SP229 rust converter for anything I couldn't get to. And finally self etching primer & top coat paint.
For the internal subframe again the Blaster metal rescue will dissolve as much rust as possible and that'll get flushed out. I'm then going to use the Eastwood Internal frame coating (black) which is a rust converter and also a black zinc phophate coating/paint in (1) step. With the long hose 360* spray nozzle attachment it'll get deep into the subframe and cover everything. This should be a functionally good solution to strip the rust, then convert it, and zinc phosphate paint it to protect against any future rust intrusion.
Anyway, this'll take some time as the subframe is large and difficult to handle. I'm going to hang the subframe thru the mounting points so I can prime & paint it to get it up off the ground when the time comes. The upper & lower radiator channel rails are also rusting a bit on the seams but those I can toss into my media blaster and do a proper job of stripping and repainting. Need to color match the factory olive green color then I'll re-spray those parts for a factory fresh look. I'll toss some pics up later to show the before shots.
Video of the basic process I'm going to be taking to make the subframe restoration possible:
Ignore the dirty steering rack and swaybar. New steering rack is going in later and swaybar is getting repainted satin black.
Tools I used are below. I found out a couple of things. Firstly most rust remover chemicals don't work that well. I found something that does. Napa sell an Aluminum Brightening spray for mag wheels. Any of these sprays for raw aluminum mag wheels (NOT powder coated) will work as they generally have an aggressive acid. This is possibly the most aggressive acid I've ever used so gloves and eye protection are 100% mandatory and respiratory mask as well. It strips metal so clean the surfaces typically will flash rust shortly afterwards without cleaning them with water or solvent and quickly dried, do NOT use this on zinc plated materials. I tried the Blaster Metal Rescue and the Rustoleum Rust Dissolver and no these are nowhere near effective compared to the mag wheel cleaner but they have their purpose later-on. When they say acid dipping a frame.......it's something like this but obviously much higher concentrations. Let sit for a maybe 30 seconds max & then start scrubbing with a steel brush and the rust dissolves very effectively. Takes time, but it works.
For stripping paint and heavy rust a medium grit 2" nylon 100-120 grit sanding pad mounted on a 90* air grinder worked great. Went thru about (5) to get half the subframe stripped but pricey at $1.00 ea. I'm going to switch tactis here and use my trusty new 4.5" angle grinder with the $8.99 multi-layer sanding wheel for the big flat surfaces, then switch to the smaller 2" grinder for the tricky/tight stuff. This strategy seems to be paying off as it's by far the most effective/clean way to strip paint and get the job done quickly. Any remaining rust requires a good Drill with a mounted steel wire bristle brush & abrasive cup brush. Then as mentioned I hit that with the mag cleaner acid.
I got most of the front rail of the subframe rail stripped of rust which was bad. Trying out different techniques before attempting to remove rust on the remaining sub-frame. Stripping the paint is almost mandatory at this point though the rust is predictably just in the welding joints & seams. The pitting requires the use of the wire cup brush and acid to dig the rust out. The interior of the subframe will be dealt with using a different strategy. That'll require some long rifle brushes, small chains, and any metal that can whip around inside the subframe to knock old rust and paint chips off. The goal will not to remove all the internal rust as that is physically impossible without a full acid dip. But to get enough off to treat it with the rust converter and the Eastwood internal frame coating to seal it up. Having said that, I am going to try and setup a bath using the Blaster Metal Rescue rust remover and a large pan to dip the Subframe in and see how much corrosion can be removed to start with. But generally trying to get the majority of the rust off and let the other products do their thing is the typical approach.
The welded joints & seems are kinda tricky as no amount of rust removal can get all of it out, always some is left behind. This is why the Dupli-color Rust Fix will be used. This'll convert any remaining rust to a black iron phosphate coating I can use as a first primer coat. Followed by an etching primer coat which will help prevent/delay further rusting in the future. The rust pitting will get fixed on those few spots with some filling primer and with some sanding should be good to go with a topcoat. I'll probably use a 180-220 grit final metal finish to lock the base primer and with the amount of coats I'm using it'll smooth coat that over on the final top-coat. Prior to that the entire subframe will be dropped and hung on a rack for stripping & priming/painting.
I considered POR-15 but decided against it. Most folks just use this to simply encapsulate heavy rust and somehow that seems wrong to me. If I can mechanically/chemically remove as much rust as possible that'll be best. The Pros simply media blast or acid dip and ultimately that is the best approach so I'm going for something close to that wherever possible. Functionally if this lasts 10 years then that works for me.
The picture looks bad, but the only other significant chassis rust are the (2) tow hook brackets and (1) spot next to the swaybar that was rubbing and a couple of other small spots......that's about it. I'll fix those quickly and then prime/paint. I won't be painting the engine compartment because it actually doesn't need it though the picture makes it look bad it's just mostly dirt. Little bit of cleanup on the exhaust heatshielding with solvent but again all in great shape. I was pretty good about pressure washing the engine all the time and this probably kept chassis corrosion to the minimum. With a good pressure wash it'll cleanup like new in there and I might even do some paint correction to polish that up as well.
Just received the SuperPro front control arm bushings. Very interesting design. So what they've done is designed a sort of inverse toroid shape inside the bushing which allows the steel sleeve insert to pivot like a heim joint, yet not translate in the x & y plane. This takes the load off the control arm as it translates thru it's suspension travel. Much different than the PowerFlex bushings which have a straight cylindrical inside bore shape and require the polyurethane to compress. This has somewhat alleviated my initial concerns about control arm damage as the control arm is basically free to translate without pre-load stress. I've read this will alter the spring rate of the suspension but I can compensate later when I do the coil-overs. I'll post up some pics when I start the bushing install process. I also have my Amazon bushing install kt and it has all the fittings to make the bushing install a straight forward process.
Received the last big batch of parts for the build from the dealership.
Stock brake rotors were in good shape and were turned for $25 @ Oreilly's and they took the bare minimum off with a nice ground surface finish. That saved me $150 over getting new replacements that I can put towards a bigger brake package later. Going to run the stock brakes for the winter on the 17" wheels. Still need some upgraded pads from TireRack so that'll get ordered later. For a future brake upgrade I bought the RS brake rotor shields which are fairly flat so hoping they'll clear the bigger rotors I have planned. If not I'm thinking of reversing them so they will clear. Also have the new RS control arms and the SuperPro polyurethane control arms bushings to go with them and later I'll show how they get installed. As many know the RS control arms have the extra steel plate welded on the end near the steering knuckle ball joint to reinforce it and definitely it's beefier than the stock Juke control arm so it's worth it as an upgrade.
Below are the new OEM CVT forward clutch drum assembly complete, sun gear, and input shaft for the final CVT build completion which I'll cover in my CVT rebuild thread. Given that I'll be spinning the engine up to 7500 rpms I'll also be ordering up a new CVT oil pump chain and sprocket gears as well and some other minor components before I call it good. Some more tooling needed for the CVT install that I'll cover in that thread but then that'll be completed after the subframe rebuild.
Removed the stock steering rack and returned it to the dealership for the $200 core charge refund. Not going to go thru the steps but I used a handle-bar/frame tie bar for mountain bike repair to pin the steering wheel to the shifter assembly and preventing it from moving/rotating during the steering rack removal as this can damage some internal wires. I can drop the subframe possibly tomorrow and do some more work on stripping the subframe of paint and rust. The Harbor Freight Bauer 4.5" angle grinder with 120 grit sanding wheel is working awesome as it strips paint quickly and leaves a nice machined surface for sanding/painting prep without digging into the metal. Shown below is the bushing install kit from Amazon for the SuperPro bushing install coming up shortly.
So basically this is the main push to getting the vehicle prepped to get the engine/trans put into the Juke. Gonna be tough to get it all done by November but that's the goal I'm still shooting for. The subframe and steering knuckle refurb is going to take some time but now it's basically all downhill from here on out.
Well, finally got the swaybar out. Bolts were fairly rusted and the SWB mount brackets were also heavily corroded which was strange but I have new replacements. Interesting side note, the swaybar was rubbing on the chassis but the chassis is made of such a high tensile steel so it just wore the swaybar done a bit while the uni-body only had the paint worn off. I'll repaint the SWB and add (2) small collar clamps left & right and then loctite them in place which should keep the SWB centered up. This was a factory flaw in the SWB crimp collar mounting but this should fix that.
Anyway, starting to look like the PowerFlex swaybar polyurethane mounts aren't much of an upgrade over stock. I know people will say aftemarket is always better.......not really. The stockers have a very hard plastic insert base clipped into the swaybar mount sleeve which itself is a hard rubber almost like a polyurethane and fairly thin and not easily compressible. How that works is the base of the mount is most likely to be compressed with the twisting of the swaybar thus this solid insert is required. The PowerFlex street mount is almost squishy especially the vertical compliance though they have a stiffer Race version it wouldn't matter. The Siberian Bushing swaybar mount upgrade is a very hard solid harder polyrethane but still going to be more flexible than the stocker. I know this is going to sound crazy but actually the OEM swaybar mount is a better upgrade than the aftmarket SWB mount inserts IMHO. So I'm going to have to purchase a stock replacement bushings from the dealership though thankfully the are only $7.55 ea.
Side topic here: So when you are getting your Juke repaired because of the high tensile steel in the chassis/unibody you really want OEM replacement components as it's highly doubtful the replacement components will be as strong/durable as factory. This topic will come up again but where I can and it's critical/safety related I always use OEM Nissan components. With very few exceptions in my build I mainly use Nissan OEM parts. Those exceptions are typically the same OEM suppliers to Nissan (i.e. electrical sensors) but sold thru other distributors at a much lower price. Anything aftermarket is the main exception and that is the risk of upgrading a vehicle as sometimes the upgrades are inferior reliability/quality but this is what we do for performance. Generally I try and use quality aftermarket companies (i.e. Injen, Synapse, Turbosmart, Carrillo, Cometic, ARP, King Bearing, SuperTech, etc.). Everytime I tried to substitute OEM with cheap aftermarket I got a surprise (with a few exceptions) and eventually had to spend the money on OEM parts anyway. Being an engineer I'm aware of what goes into designing/manufacturing/qualifying components and most aftermarket replacement parts are knockoffs and cheaper for a reason and thus it's tough to tell what's good and what's not though I'm sure there are good ones out there.
There are some reinforced body frame components made of high strength steel (HSS) that have a tensile strength as high as 142 - 192 kpsi while the main unibody are about 64 - 113 kpsi. I know aftermarket parts are cheaper and trust me I'm always tempted but this is why I don't typically substitute. Nissan also use a galvannealed steel which is highly resistant to corrosion and I can vouch that my Juke has minimal to no corrosion on the uni-body itself even with (6) Chicago winters seeing plenty of salt.
I just saw a Juke RS restoration video and although they took OEM Nissan parts off of another RS model they ended up drilling the spot weld joints out and then pop-riveted the panels back in place. It was horrifying to watch that as I know that is not the correct method. Had they used OEM new parts they could have ground those joints down carefully to remove the crushed panels and re-spot welded the new panels instead of drilling out the spot weld joints and being forced to pop rivet everything together. Ironically they were somehow super concerned about the vehicle being stock and not modded making extra sure the exhaust was OEM, yet had plans for some 400 w.h.p. upgrade later. I almost laughed out loud as the amount of hack in that video was legendary and many parts were from different years, color matching was off, etc. How they put that car back together wouldn't have passed an inspection and was massive cringe to watch. There is some commentary about how some of these parts aren't structural but most parts support the vehicle in a crash. Salvage vehicle title but this is why I don't buy used cars. Thankfully I don't have to replace any spot weld panels but if I did I'd follow the factory SM instructions to the letter or just contract it out to a body shop. Actually the Nissan SM for the Body Repair (BRM) is a fascinating read especially for you guys who have body work experience.
Below is a Juke RS salvage rebuild....somewhat cringe but interesting to watch:
Wife expressed interest since it came across my youtube feed on the roku so was checking out easy Cherokee Trailhawk mods like tires, offsets, spacers, and other silly accessory things. Then I ran across this horrible, horrible idea for a mod (linked to the explanation of the cringe. Cutting @ 5:44 and cringe @ 7:12).
Oh my god. Well, at least he had the forethought to primer the ground joint though he's missing the factory joint sealant and of course a whole bunch of weld that probably is critical. The look of pride is classic DYI hack at it's best and I think we've all been there at some point. This is why I don't buy used cars, I repeat I don't buy used cars and this confirms my worst fears. If I do something like this in my build thread please remind me and I'll correct it or have a professional take care of it. Lol....funny though.
I saw the video of that salvage RS and when they were just going full gorilla and chop shop on the front end supports I just shook my head. I was just thinking to myself the whole time; “but don’t you need those to be welded to the rest of the frame?”… it was very hard to watch
I may send out the sub-frame to ReadiStrip. Going to get a quote. I'll strip as much rust & paint as I can first. They use an electrolytic alkaline immersion process which is superior to acid dipping to remove rust completely and doesn't weaken the base metal or cause paint issues later. We will see how expensive this is going to be as a new sub-frame is $800. If not then I'll still go with the phosphate rust conversion and internal coating from Eastwood but figured I'd give this a shot as it's a tricky part to strip rust from. I'm a bit of a perfectionist so we will see how this goes.
ReadiStrip quoted me $250-$450 to chemically strip the subframe. At $250 might be worth it as time is now money for me as winter is going to get expensive with vehicle storage and whatnot. Will have to see after this weekend how far I get. Guys have done the DYI homebrew electrolysis rust removal method but I have to see if I can find a small kids swimming pool to do the chemical bath as the subframe is fairly big. Mostly likely I'm going this route but I need to get the chemical in bulk.