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tmanhwm

1976 B210 -- Finally Found my Baby

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Well, I've been lurking around here for quite some time now, and I just haven't been able to find the time to do a proper intro post.  You all know how it goes.  So, without further ado, here's the story of how I finally came to own my B210. Grab some popcorn...

 

My wife and I moved up from Anaheim, CA to Ventura, CA late last year, and during that whole process she finally got her wish of getting me to sell my motorcycle.  She always hated it, worried about me, and it wasn't running well at the time.  I started looking for a new one after we got settled but she quickly put her foot down.  So, with that money burning a hole in my pocket, I started looking for something with four wheels.

 

I stumbled across this website one day looking at old Datsuns, and eventually, the B210 hatchback caught my fancy.  Only problem...a little hard to come by. I searched and searched, but no luck.  At one point I was contemplating driving to Portland to take a look at one, but after talking to the owner, it was just too rough to take the chance.

 

FINALLY, in June of this year, I stumbled across a tiny classifieds website that I had never heard of with an ad for a 76 hatchback.  No pictures. No phone number.  I fired off an email and figured I'd never hear back.

 

About a week later I get a response.  They still have it and I get one picture:

 

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Little dent...pretty straight looking...I started to get my hopes up.  I emailed back with a few other questions asked for some more pictures.  It took another couple of days, but they said she was running well, good tranny, and other than the dent in the front, some dried out weathestripping.  Oh, and one more picture:

 

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Now I'm interested.  We agree that I'm going to come by and take a look that Saturday...it was about a 4 hour drive from me and I needed to wrangle up a trailer just in case.  I email the sellers back for an address, and they send me this:

 

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Saturday rolled around and I loaded up our truck with some tools and the wife, and off we went.  Nice drive until we got near their house.  It was easily 20 miles from the nearest town, waaaayy out on the edge of the Sequoia National Forest.  The road was narrow, and we hadn't seen a house for a couple of miles. As we got close, my wife turned to me and said, "I really hope they aren't murderers."  :unsure:

 

Turned out to be an incredibly nice retired couple who lived most of their lives in Long Beach.  The car was bought by her brother in 1981, and given to them when he moved to Japan in 1989.  They brought it with them when they moved up there in the mid 90s, but didn't really drive it all that much. The husband was a machinist by trade, so the engine ran like a top. 122k miles, tons of documentation from over the years, shop manual, and a few extra parts.  It was a no brainer for me.  The wife and I went inside to sign everything, and while we were sitting at the table, she said to me, "Jim and I thought you were going to come and murder us."  :rolleyes:  We had a good laugh.

 

Here's a few more pictures from the day I picked her up:

 

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Missing a bit of carpet, but no real rust down here:

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Here she is finally at home:

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The POs said that they resprayed the car in the late 90's, but they matched the color right and laid down a thick coat of single stage.  A solid weekend of polishing and it looks fantastic.  I've been driving her almost every day since.

 

I was originally thinking I wanted to buy a hatchback that was in ok shape, and do an engine swap.  But this girl is just too nice.  So I've been collecting parts and cleaning up what I've got.  Almost all the rubber was rotting away...slowing finding a piece here and a piece there.  Scored a tachometer a few months ago from Australia, and a complete set of the rubber endcaps for the bumpers too.  Getting ready to to replace the carpet and I want to have the seats recovered, but I still can't fine a woven vinyl that looks close enough to the original.

 

That's about all for now.  One more shot of her in my parking lot at work...love how small it is!!

 

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Sweet looking ride you scored on.. Reminds me of my first car bought back in the day.. Also a 76 hatchback in the same color as yours. I have it pictured on my post I did..

http://community.ratsun.net/topic/67836-back-from-a-long-time-absence/...

What other plans do have in mind for your new ride.??

Welcome to the B210 crew.!!!

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Me too! Bought a new '76 2dr sedan and couple of years later got another '76... a  hatch from a family member. Both were butterscotch color. That one looks great but is it yellow? or mossy? Good score and you got out alive!!!

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For now, I'm just gonna keep driving it and working on tidying her up a bit.  The interior needs a bit of work, and I'd like to get the radio working.  Eventually I'll have to tackle the dash, which is pretty baked.

 

Also, I just recently noticed that either the horn will work, or the headlights, but not both.

 

datzenmike - It's a weird yellow that totally looks greenish depending on the light.  My color code has worn off so I'm not totally sure what it its, but the respray matches the spots that are still factory, so I think it's an original color.  Definitely turns heads!

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Nice hatch! Love the story! I just scooped up a 76 hatch too..stoked. I live in coarsegold, not to far from Yosemite national park & I picked up the hatch 5 miles away from some friends of ours that had the car put away right under our nose. I go up into the sequoia national park every year to hike. The outskirts of the sequoia can look real remote. Your story had me laughing when your wife said "what if they are murderers". Lol! My wife thinks the same way... i was going to sell the hatch but you just don't see them around anymore & I just think it's a cool little car! What kind of response do you get from hatch when driving around?

Greg

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Nice hatch! Love the story! I just scooped up a 76 hatch too..stoked. I live in coarsegold, not to far from Yosemite national park & I picked up the hatch 5 miles away from some friends of ours that had the car put away right under our nose. I go up into the sequoia national park every year to hike. The outskirts of the sequoia can look real remote. Your story had me laughing when your wife said "what if they are murderers". Lol! My wife thinks the same way... i was going to sell the hatch but you just don't see them around anymore & I just think it's a cool little car! What kind of response do you get from hatch when driving around?

Greg

 

It's a blast! Everyone has either owned one, or known someone who did. I've heard every kind of story...a woman told me that one of her high school friends had one that you could start with a butter knife. The whole group knew it, and if you saw it parked around town and needed it, you'd just jump in and go.

 

The guy who runs my coffee shop in town told me he grew up with one on a farm in Texas. He was the third of 4 brothers, and by the time he got to learn to drive it (pulling donuts and figure 8s in a field) the entire drivers floor had rusted through.

 

She's slow but reliable, and other than hitting my head on the roof when I go over speed bumps (I'm 6' 3"), I wouldn't change a thing.

 

I've also got quite a stack of notes I keep in the glove box from people leaving offers to buy her!

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Nice..... sounds like great response. When I use to drive my 66 Datsun roadster around the town where I live the response was great! I was very surprised that people in the mountain town where I live knew what it was.. I've been driving my b210 & 510 wagon around my neighborhood, they are both on a non-op & trying to figure out which one I'm going to license. My 72 510 wagon runs real strong & smooth with the ka24de & 5 speed that it has. The b210 is just a cool car to roll in! It's so quiet you can't even hear it when I'm driving it. My goon I still have the exhaust to do & have a windshield installed. The b210 needs some tires & it's pretty much ready to go. Can't wait to start driving them like I want too. :)

Greg

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