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New Guy '71 Datsun 1200 Build

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1971 Datsun 1200 coupe build in progress


It started out something like this



I Own a small resto shop in Tempe, AZ



Motor Out, Doors off.



Stripped the fenders and hood



Hood had a small tear



Roof was covered with bondo from the 80's



Starting to take shape



The doors were pretty beat up but after a lot of hammering just needed a skim of polyfil





Stripping the body. This thing had like 4 or 5 layers of paint



The color i chose is called Tantalizing Turquoise




Camber plates Finished up and ready for:



Carrera coilover kit in the front with carrera panhard bars in the rear and koni reds



Engine bay painted and A12 in.




Fenders done.






I was trying to make it to a Datsun rally in Williams, AZ.


Didnt make it... stupid wheel bearing.





205's ate up the fenders, so flares happened.

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Motor build, Its got Tomei everything... literally. Tomei pushrods, tomei double valve springs, retainers, oversized valves, Cylinders were rough so it's punched .50 over, custom pistons, shot peened, Balanced supposedly to 8k (im skeptical), Total seal rings, My friend from full race built me the headder, It seems like the kameri cam is a bit hot for this DGV 32/36 junk carb and it hates to idle but once its gets going it livens right up. if i were to do it again I would have spent $6,000 elsewhere but what the hell.

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The only thing i kinda skimped on was the headgasket. Anyone know if ill run into trouble? Apparently the head and block had to be decked pretty aggressivly and I believe the compression is 10:1 or so. Kameri, Nismo, and Tomei make thicker metal headgaskets but I'm not sure if its worth the $300+ bucks. I always just used factory nissan headgaskets on my RB's and never had an issue (even though the compression on an RB is much, much less).

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If the deck and head were clean and true, I don't think you'll have problems with the nissan HG on this engine. There are of course a lot of variables! If you do have problems, better the HG be your fuse than the expensive TOMEI parts!


Nice brake line bending on the firewall BTW! - I see patience and experience.


Even though the wheelbearing gave it up - good for you for trying. Running these cars is always a shakedown, and running them in the real world helps you stay focused on the most important things.


I like the color choice! -reminds me of the blue in the blue + orange GULF livery

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I put this thing somewhat quickly. I spent years building the motor but I got the rest of it together in a month. The datsun rally was kind of a trial by fire. I got it together the night before the rally and then drove 160 miles. It ran like a champ but I must have put the wheel wheel bearing in wrong. Thanks for the good words guys.

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  • 1 month later...

I like where this is going

keep up the good work

color is beautiful

Thanks! I've been building My dads 260z for the past few months and havent really had time to do anything on the 1200 with customer's cars and the old guy's car but I did manage to get it unburied from the pile of stuff that was on it.

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The orange 260 is my old man's car, The Dark Grey 280 is my little brothers, and the monster truck 280 is a girl customer of mine.

So basically If anyone cares that orange car went from that, to this:


Im trying to get it ready for the multi state datsun classic in williams, AZ in a week.

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So, how many Datsuns are you bringing to Williams :poke: , I would really like to see the 1200 myself. Sorry I wasn't carrying any wheel bearings last rear. All those cars look awesome and that A12 motor looks killer.

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So, how many Datsuns are you bringing to Williams :poke: , I would really like to see the 1200 myself. Sorry I wasn't carrying any wheel bearings last rear. All those cars look awesome and that A12 motor looks killer.

The Now gold 260z is going, the 280z is going, I didnt get my 240z dialed in time and the 1200 still has no exhaust so i think just the 2 z's are going this year. I'm making it with the 1200 next year to williams and to JCCS. Its my goal.

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just a little curious why you decide to build the a12 and not pick up an a14 or 15?


car looks great though, i love the look of the flares

I have the original a12 (correct matching number) in the car and a spare plus about 2 crates full of spare parts. I could care less about going mildly faster with an a14/15 as my RB powered 240sx is my fast car. This is just my fun car. This car was at one point raced SCCA some time back in the 80's and when I got it i decided not to muck it up with motor swaps ect. I'm kind of building as an homage to its former glory. Ive been kind of collecting 80's race parts and trying to do it as correctly as I can. It's the same reason i got the era correct Carrera made for datsun 1200 coilovers and panhard bars. i totally could have gone with something newer and cheaper but I guess the 1 guy who actually knows what they are will be geeked. Carrera shocks/coilovers aren't even around anymore.

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