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Author Topic: How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET  (Read 16618 times)

Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« on: 09:36:36 PM / 20-Jun-06 »
This could possibly go in the FAQ section, but I don't have any photos on the internals of the motor, just a video to prove it runs.

I took a stock CA20E from the S12, but the R31 Pintara CA20E has thicker side walls I've been told so would be better to use (unconfirmed). You'll also need the head from a JDM CA18DET.

I replaced the stock pistons with ACL (Australian) new standard (non-forged) items that had the 4 valve recesses. I also completely stripped & cleaned the head, block and intake manifold and replaced all of the rings, seals, gaskets, etc.

The head gasket lines up perfectly (same part number between the CA20E & the CA18DET). What doesn't fit are the timing belt & head bolts. The timing path I used was a custom job using an alloy plate to mount the fixed bottom belt pulley, leaving the stock CA18DET top adjustable pulley in place on the head. I had the block re-drilled & re-tapped to suit the CA18DET head bolts but I've ben told VG30 items may fit the stock holes (unconfirmed).

Other items that don't fit are the timing belt covers & the intake manifold bracing. I will have to make up extensions for both of these.

The wiring is a relatively simple conversion, but I left it to someone else to do & I'm still yet to work out what was spliced in for things like the ignition, tacho, water temp, etc.

Note: This engine will never be as strong as a CA18DET as it doesn't have the crank girdle & the cylinder walls are thinner. Even 15psi would probably kill the thing. I'm limiting boost to 5-10psi with the TD05-16G turbo from an Lancer EVO-III.

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Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline Jokes801tmc

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #1 on: 10:36:09 PM / 20-Jun-06 »
Could this be used to build a beefier NA motor ie. CA20DE?
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Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #2 on: 11:52:55 PM / 20-Jun-06 »
Certainly could and has been done. I spoke to someone a few years ago who said it worked quite well, but that an SR20DE would be just as good if not better. Nice and torquey but still revvy.
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline Umai Naa

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #3 on: 03:45:05 AM / 21-Jun-06 »
Hasn't someone on here fitted the DET crank girdle to an ET?? Theoretically, this should fit the 20E as well, being the same generation CA as the ET.

This is gonna be a project I wanna tackle sometime in the future.

Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #4 on: 05:29:23 AM / 21-Jun-06 »
You may be right. At the time of bulding the motor I didn't want to mess around trying to get it to fit, but I'm sure either the CA18 caps could be machined or maybe the girdle machined to fit right over the CA20 caps.
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline Jono

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #5 on: 06:18:31 AM / 07-Aug-06 »
Do you know if the Pintara CA20 has stronger rods than the S12? I'm in the research phase of building a CA20ET at the moment.

I have both a U11 (Bluebird) CA18ET and a U12 (Pintara) CA20E sitting on the workshop floor, in the process of stripping them to compare everything.

Are you positive the CA20E and CA18DET head gaskets are the same? My CA18ET gasket has slightly thicker metal cylinder rings.

Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #6 on: 10:05:47 PM / 27-Sep-06 »
Quote from: Jono
Do you know if the Pintara CA20 has stronger rods than the S12? I'm in the research phase of building a CA20ET at the moment.

I have both a U11 (Bluebird) CA18ET and a U12 (Pintara) CA20E sitting on the workshop floor, in the process of stripping them to compare everything.

Are you positive the CA20E and CA18DET head gaskets are the same? My CA18ET gasket has slightly thicker metal cylinder rings.
I can confirm the standard head gasket is the same part number for the CA16, CA18 & CA20.

I've been told the Pinny block has 2mm thicker walls. I haven't confirmed this, but I do intent to do this at a later date.
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline Nebuchernezzer

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #7 on: 12:19:31 AM / 28-Sep-06 »
i would have thought the rods would be the weak point?
Did you use the OEM matchstick rods?

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Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #8 on: 12:20:35 AM / 28-Sep-06 »
I used the matchsticks but had them shot peened.
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #9 on: 06:09:07 AM / 25-Oct-07 »
Long overdue update on the Big Block CA20DET. It's running very well making 239hp (178.1kw) @ 6000rpm and 317.1nm (32.34 kg/m) @ 4333rpm before popping the stock CA16/18/20 head gasket. A new metal HG is going in now.



And here's some very recent footage with the blown gasket still making 155rwkw - http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=ODbzUVn94Cg
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline TalkingGoats

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #10 on: 06:57:11 AM / 25-Oct-07 »
Im doing this. lol

That looks like a really good powerband for a CA.... What was the setup cost? Its cool if you want to keep it private.
I'd rather be a matchstick than a lighter.

Offline Candellan

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #11 on: 07:01:46 AM / 30-Oct-07 »
It cost far too much compared to a CA18DET, but I'm happy with the result. The car is very easy to drive given all that torque but as you can see it peaks a little and I'd like to smooth that out with some cam timing (vernier cam gears).
Gazelle MotorSport
RPJS12 Gazelle - "Big Block" CA20DET
S12 RXG Silvia - "Green Machine" SR20DET

Offline aux

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How to make a Frankenmotor - CA20DET
« Reply #12 on: 12:04:59 AM / 28-Jul-10 »
Quote from: Candellan
The head gasket lines up perfectly (same part number between the CA20E & the CA18DET). What doesn't fit are the timing belt & head bolts. The timing path I used was a custom job using an alloy plate to mount the fixed bottom belt pulley, leaving the stock CA18DET top adjustable pulley in place on the head. I had the block re-drilled &  re-tapped to suit the CA18DET head bolts but I've ben told VG30 items may fit the stock holes (unconfirmed).

here in the states, a good friend of mine used to build with some circle track racers, and he said that they would shave the heads down on their ford 2.3's so much that they would have to cut the difference off the cylinder head bolts, and that worked just fine.

considering this, are the holes on the ca20e block not wide enough for the de/t head bolts? or are they just too short..

i wouldn't think the blocks would be drastically different, hell i bet even the ca18de/t block is the same thickness as the ca20e. i just cant see nissan, trying to make money, invest in a bunch of different castings and specs for the same series of engine, just doesn't seem rational. however, if im wrong id love to see the facts.

it would be great to know all this before i start collecting parts for the project.
« Last Edit: 12:06:10 AM / 28-Jul-10 by aux »
originally quoted by baller status:
DONT: do intake, header, exhaust (you'll be disappointed) and then modify the fuel and ignition system (will get you nowhere at this point).
DO: raise compression (pistons) and upgrade the cam. Then do the things I told you not to.