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i am balding, a ginger, and have a penchant for non-standard vehicles. i also have too much stuff


so, i got this bug up my butt that i want a pickup truck again, it has to be smog exempt (so i can do whatever i want with it here in CA), and a manual transmission. For various reasons Datsun came to mind and BAM: i stumble across this website following a CL ad! awesome


you see, i like motorcycles too and my primary bike for several years has been the Ratzuki:




a 1997 GSXR 750 that i've never dumped but somebody sure did. i bought it for the Ohlins rear shock with a rocker switch spliced into the battery leads to substitute for the busted ignition, and it just so happens that the clean title, straight frame, and otherwise running bike that came with it have served me quite well. but i digress... I figure the leap to a Ratsun from ratzuki makes sense to haul the bikes around, and maybe someone wants to trade me a 521 pick-em-up for this 1975 GL1000:



for anyone interested more details on the goldwing can be found: here


and now for the question portion:

once running, what kind of care and feeding do these animals need?

i have been reading and searching, and maintenance seems pretty typical for the vintage.


i see that rust is an issue which is typical of anything old and japanese so i'm comfortable with that.


are there critical design issues that make the freeze plugs shoot out thus dumping all your oil on the freeway without your knowledge prior to the engine seizing? (thank you mother toyota)


anyway, cheers, happy new year and perhaps i'll be joining ya'll as an owner rather than an admirer!

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From one noobie to another ... welcome!

I live near Santa Cruz, coastal moutains, but work in Sillicon Valley. I too wanted a pre-smog truck, and back in the day (1970's) Datsun kicked ass over the other small trucks. My brother drove a 510 wagon for years (decades) only doing basic maintenance, that thing never let him down. I wish I knew he was selling it, because I would have loved it. I had several friends with Datsun trucks,. my grandfather had a 521 when they came out. Great little trucks. I thik the biggest "flaw" with an older Datsun pickup truck is the poor drum brakes, even at their best they suck compared to modern cars and normal stop-and-go traffic these days. A quick search here can get you the parts you need to convert to disc brakes - problem solved.

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welcome, the 521 needs no special care. It has the bulletproof 1600 OHC engine which can run at 6000 RPM for extensive periods and so can do 60 MPH. Come to think of it, it's a bit like a motorcycle. Rev it up and put on your earplugs.


The 521 really doesn't have any flaws that cause it to die.

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It is not an impossible problem to fix, but 521 trucks have kingpins, instead of ball joints on the front end. they should be lubed every 3000 miles. Few were. They wore, and the tire now wobbles.


It was possible to get a kingpin repair kit at the Nissan dealer, fairly recently, but maybe not now, but they are still available from other sources.


To check kingpins, grab the front wheel at the top. Push in and out, hard, if the wheel moves in and out, and makes a clunking sound, it has bad king pins.


Use that to renegotiate the price.

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thanks for the info all, it seems these are like miniature tanks only without the armor and crash protection. i like what i'm seeing


"Bald red-head" can either mean something really really nice, or really really less than nice. :P


ya know, i've used this alias on and off for about 10 years and you're the first one to make that leap. myself included. this is somewhat remarkable as many of my friends are like me in that their minds stray toward the gutter when they can manage to pull them up out of the sewer. i think we'll get along just fine

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