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I have just joined as I recently purchased a MQ style side ute to restore. It’s a 3.2 diesel with 200k on the clock. I’m keen to hear thoughts on what I should be focusing on in regards to upgrades ie. new suspension, tyre size, exhaust etc
 

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MK Wagon, and an SD33T in pieces...
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Welcome to the forum mate. MQ's with tubs are cool, and rare, you're lucky to have one for sure. The in-house MQ expert we've got, @james008, also has one that he's doing up at the moment.
Put up some pics so we can see what it looks like (y)
 
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Rust is just natural weight reduction.
1986 SD33T SWB
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11,501 Posts
As @rgren2 posted, I'd at least look into the extent of the rust before modifications, which it will almost certainly have lol.

Beyond that 2" lift kits are still easily available, buy a quality kit like OME that includes longer leaf springs to gain lift not just std length with a heavier spring rate. Extended shackles are also an option but they have a habit of contributing to cracked front spring mounts.
If you have an SD33T a 3" exhaust, intercooler etc is worth doing. If its an SD33 N/A, not so much, for the minuscule gains something like headers will get you are just wasting money, if you want more power look for a turbo engine, or turbo yours.

The tubs are fairly rare on Patrol utes, so if its salvageable its worthwhile doing. They are only a single skin tub though, so anything that dents the inside of the tub also dents the outside, so not really suited to heavy/hard objects sliding around. The lighter duty 720, which was manufactured at the same time, had a double skin tub which makes no logical sense, but that's a common 80's/90's Nissan theme.

Welcome to the forum mate. MQ's with tubs are cool, and rare, you're lucky to have one for sure. The in-house MQ expert we've got, @james008, also has one that he's doing up at the moment.
Put up some pics so we can see what it looks like (y)
Doing up is a very optimistic way of looking at it Ethan lol.
I have so far pressure washed and poked rust holes into the tub and cab, or made them worse, and broken the chassis. I did clean the interior and cover the little remaining seat foam with seat covers though.
 

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MK Wagon, and an SD33T in pieces...
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As @rgren2 posted, I'd at least look into the extent of the rust before modifications, which it will almost certainly have lol.

Beyond that 2" lift kits are still easily available, buy a quality kit like OME that includes longer leaf springs to gain lift not just std length with a heavier spring rate. Extended shackles are also an option but they have a habit of contributing to cracked front spring mounts.
If you have an SD33T a 3" exhaust, intercooler etc is worth doing. If its an SD33 N/A, not so much, for the minuscule gains something like headers will get you are just wasting money, if you want more power look for a turbo engine, or turbo yours.

The tubs are fairly rare on Patrol utes, so if its salvageable its worthwhile doing. They are only a single skin tub though, so anything that dents the inside of the tub also dents the outside, so not really suited to heavy/hard objects sliding around. The lighter duty 720, which was manufactured at the same time, had a double skin tub which makes no logical sense, but that's a common 80's/90's Nissan theme.


Doing up is a very optimistic way of looking at it Ethan lol.
I have so far pressure washed and poked rust holes into the tub and cab, or made them worse, and broken the chassis. I did clean the interior and cover the little remaining seat foam with seat covers though.
Ahh well every $100,000 build starts somewhere! 🤣
 

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Rust is just natural weight reduction.
1986 SD33T SWB
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Thanks for your insight. I will start with removing the tub and giving the chassis a clean and paint. I may then look at some raptor paint for the body. The suspension upgrade is a definite. I will take pics once I start.
cheers
Depending on what you want, a short term fun run or long term survivor. Fibreglass will be your best friend, though always appreciate the hard yards on repairs, replacing with steel is satisfying
 
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