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"Zeke"- '72 510 2Dr

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Thanks, Lockleaf. I think this is the thread?


Anyway, the take away for me was that the O-ring seals are available at hardware stores or Napa, sizes 007 and 115. I'm going to try this. Unfortunately the 620 heater valve that people were cannibalizing is now NLA.


Shack, thanks. Yes, I'm well aware of the binding issue with urethane bushings in the control arms when using an adjustable crossmember. That said, I have been running prothane bushings in my DPR crossmember in my SR car for 20 yrs, and they still haven't gone wonky. I know it's a compromise and I'm sure they have probably worn faster than if they were installed in a non-adjustable crossmember, but I have noticed no ill effects regarding handling or alignment. Not a daily driver, but it's probably gone >50,000 hard driving miles since installation.  So, I chose to go that route again, and spend the $$ for the spherical bearing kit on other things. When I redo the SR car, it will get be getting the full monoball treatment...

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Meanwhile, got the heater assembly all back together (except for the valve) after cleaning, painting and replacing the weather stripping. Cleaned and painted the plastic plenum:



Here's the flapper door and blower closeout painted with new weather stripping:



Heater core back in with new outlet hose routed to firewall pipe:



Plenum re-installed:



Missing one of the two clips that clamp the bottom of the plenum.  Add that to the list of annoying little parts that need to be tracked down...



Just need to finish rebuilding the valve assy and the heater/blower assy will be pretty much ready to go back in the car!

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Went to Ace Hardware today for heater valve O-rings. The part numbering did not coincide with the 007 and 115 #'s from the previous referenced thread, but we matched the originals up to these. Since I had two valves to rebuild, picked up a pair of each size at $0.59 each. 



 Re-assembled the valve assy using the new O-rings and lubed everything up with Permatex silicone grease:



Happy to report that both valves are now leak free and operating good as new!  Here's my test apparatus. Used a portable tire inflator compressor, with one of the inflatables adapters that was supplied with compressor jammed into a 5/16 hose jammed into a 5/8" hose. Filled the heater valve assy with water and pressurized with the tire inflator to 30-35 psi. No leaks whatsoever on both valves. Stoked!





Here's the refurbished valve assy installed on the heater/blower assy, which is now ready for re-installation into the car. Almost looks brand new!



In other news, Some parts have come in over the last few days. Koni strut inserts (AW11 MR2 rears):



S13 H&R 15mm spacers, which come with the longer 12x1.25 wheel studs which is a nice touch. These will need to be slightly machined to fit over the 280ZX hubs.



Stoptech slotted 280ZX rotors:



ZX front wheel bearings and speedbleeders:



Length comparison between the 280ZX Tokico Illumina BZ3038 (14 7/8") and the MR2 Koni 8641-1142SP  (13 5/8"):



Looking forward to getting my shortened struts back from TSR. Hopefully The Keeper hasn't forgot about those ZX hubs I still need. Still working on sourcing some ZX calipers...

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Still waiting on some parts.  Front calipers and hubs are on the way. Advanced Auto Parts/CARQUEST is the only place I could find remanufactured 280zx calipers with brackets. TSR is almost done with my struts.  In the meantime, today I decided to clean the grimy tranny tunnel. Here it is after rustproofing:




Also blacked out the front of the radiator core support like they did at the factory. Makes the grille look so much better without a body colored background in my opinion.



Here's how the car looks currently with no driveline, rear suspension done and some stock 510 struts on Mulholland springs temporarily installed with 14" Libres so I can roll it out of the garage. I think the Roadster Comp rear springs cut 3/4 coil will be about right ride height-wise once it's at fighting weight.


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Still waiting on struts...

Meanwhile, 280ZX hubs were delivered (Thanks, James!). They are in real good shape. Stripped down, degreased, ready for painting:



Painted, with bearing races and wheel studs installed:





Wheel studs are NISMO 50mm. Long studs for S13 supplied with the H&R hub spacers were too fat at the knurl to press into hub:



280ZX Brake calipers from Advance Auto Parts were delivered.  Not bad for $41.99 ea plus $5.00 core charge. Already have the Porterfield R-4S pads for 'em: 



Something I've been kind of putting off for fear of messing up the new headliner is installing the interior c-pillar vents. Fortunately I have another '72 2dr to take measurements as to where to cut.  Not having any vents to start with, found a set of beige vents at the Eagle Rock swap meet and painted them black (also sprayed the plastic B-pillar garnish at the same time):



First incision into pristine headliner:



Left side done. Other side also went well:



With any luck I should get my shortened coil-over 280ZX struts back any day now. I have every thing ready to install- hubs, bearings, calipers, rotors, pads, brake hoses,  springs, camber plates.  Really looking forward to finishing up the front suspension...

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Nothing too special to report today, but some minor progress has been made. I try to adhere to the philosophy of "do something each day" towards your goal. No matter how big or small, at least get something done! So I began re-installing the wire looms, beginning with cabin/trunk loom. The new rear side marker lights that came with the car had spade connectors, so not being one to cut wires unnecessarily, I made adapters to go from spade to bullet. Maybe I'll snip the spade connectors all together and splice in bullet connectors for a cleaner look...or not. After all, it's in the trunk.




Here's the side marker installed on the fender. It took a surprising amount of effort to get the stainless frame to seat properly into the rubber seal:



On to a different bullet. Randy had shaved the license plate lights and installed hot rod style bullet LED license plate lights on his "Snoop Dog" wagon. These lights do double duty as they attach the plate to the car, and also illuminate it. I found a pair in the parts assortment that came with Zeke. Since the license plate lights had been shaved, clearly he intended to go the same route with this car. The LED lamps are terminated in bare wire, so I soldered spade connectors to the LED lights and crimped t-connectors to the factory license light wires in the loom. This way, the loom remains intact in case a future owner wishes to revert to stock license lights. Here's the lamps installed:



And here's the wiring:



I also re-installed the dash loom. The female connector to the turn signal indicators had been cut off. It attaches to the instrument binnacle 3-prong male connector shown here:



I found a throttle switch assembly in my parts stash which fortunately has the mating female 3-prong connector which I can cannibalize.


Since I'm on to the dash bits, I realized I was missing the cigarette lighter. Some scrounging in my parts bins turned up this one, which came from my very first 510, a '71 2dr that met its ultimate demise in a landfill circa early '80s.




One last triviality- here's what can be done with two minutes and a silver Sharpie:



I've got a few wires to sort under the dash, then it's on to the engine compartment loom...

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Got a call from TSR to come pick up my modified struts today. Woohoo!  Behold:



Those hex gland nuts are the round ones supplied with the Koni inserts that have been machined by TSR to hex. Gotta get a coat of paint on the strut housings, then I can assemble and install and the suspension and brakes will be complete!

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Finally installed the front struts and brakes today. Stoked! Zeke's new suspension and brakes are now complete.






Ride height is coming down. Here's Zeke sitting on his new suspension for the first time (still no drivetrain installed):



Next up, send the car out to have the driver's side front floor repaired. I had the LF fender straightened and will be sending that out to get repainted, along with an Interpart Spook. Meanwhile I can work on pruning the engine room harness of unnecessary wires. Also, it's getting to be time to dig out my old crate L20B and start freshening it up. The plan is to install new bearings, rings and get the bottom end balanced. The closed chamber A87 head could probably use a valve job, too. It's got a nice .480/280 cam in it with larger valves.  I've got a set of 44PHH Mikunis with short runner intake that are already set up for this combo. Thinking I might be willing to sacrifice a little top end and run the stock exhaust manifold. Less noise, underhood heat and expense vs. a proper Tri-Y L20B header. I also have a good 280ZX 5-speed with shortened driveshaft and modified tranny mount, plus a 6-bolt 200mm Tilton aluminum flywheel and Roadster clutch kit for it.  Should make for a nice setup for street and occasional A/X or track day.    


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You know, if you haven't bled the brakes yet, you should really swap the struts side-to-side.  ;)

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I know about the caliper/tie-rod interference issue with 280ZX struts/brakes on a 510, but I've always used 1" RCAs. I suppose I've remained blissfully ignorant to the possibility that there could still be an interference issue with well worn pads.  I'm pretty sure I've gone well past 50% pad life without issue, but since you've got me wondering, I think I'll make some measurements. Fortunately I have a set of used R-4 pads that are ~50% worn. I will measure the pad thickness compared to the new pads, then install the worn pads and check how much clearance I have at full lock. This should be interesting... 

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I know about the caliper/tie-rod interference issue with 280ZX struts/brakes on a 510


I know this ins't your first rodeo.  ;)



but I've always used 1" RCAs.


I did that once. Didn't like it, so never did it again. Hence my compulsion to swap sides. I do it on everything, ZX brakes or no...    :P

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Ok, today I took a look at caliper/tie-rod clearance.  First, a review of the setup:


280ZX struts shortened for AW11 MR2 rear inserts

280ZX calipers and rotors 

Stock '69 front crossmember

Ride height set at 6" at rocker horizontal surface aft of front wheel arch as measured at notch in pinch weld

Stock 510 Lower Control Arm w/ DP Racing monoball bushings

Stock tie rods

DP Racing 1" Roll Center Adjusters (aka Bumpsteer Spacers)


Here's a few gratuitous pics showing the ride height. Wheels are powder coated AR Libre 14x5.5 with some old 195/55 tires and 15mm spacers (front only). Keep in mind there's no drivetrain installed. I just adjusted the front coilovers to mimic something close to the final ride height. Like I said in a previous post, it keeps getting lower which is a good thing!







Now, back to the experiment. I have a set of worn Porterfield R-4 pads and compared them to the new R-4S pads. Total thickness was approx. 20.3 mm for the new pads and 11.4 mm for the worn pads. Pad material thickness was approx.10.6 mm for the new pads and 5.4 mm for the worn pads, so pad life was at approx. 50%. Comparison pic of the pads:



I installed the worn pads in the RF caliper and moved the caliper fully inboard such that the outer pad was snug against the rotor. Then I cranked the wheel full left lock. Here's how much clearance there was:



Full right lock was similar, but harder to photograph, hence no pic.  It's hard to project the amount of clearance in the correct plane from the photo, but I'm pretty confident from what I observed that there will be sufficient clearance (>5mm) even with fully worn pads. In my case, I don't see a need to swap the struts side-to-side.


In other news, shortly after this experiment I loaded the car onto a trailer and took it to my buddy's shop for replacement of the damaged driver's side front floor, final fitting of the repaired LF Fender, and rolling of the fender arches. Really looking forward to getting the metal work completed! 





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I'm pretty confident from what I observed that there will be sufficient clearance (>5mm) even with fully worn pads. In my case, I don't see a need to swap the struts side-to-side.


Indeed. With the "bumpsteer" spacers, there's no real need. For me, just a want.   ^_^

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FYI you have the front rotors on the wrong side so now you should just swap the struts..lol. They are directional rotors. Also I would get fully insulated male spade connectors for the license plate lights, looks like the connectors could short to ground the way you have them.

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FYI you have the front rotors on the wrong side so now you should just swap the struts..lol. They are directional rotors. Also I would get fully insulated male spade connectors for the license plate lights, looks like the connectors could short to ground the way you have them.


Actually, they are correct according to the instructions, and the way they were marked and packaged as L and R. I would have been inclined to install them the other way, too, as it just seems more intuitive.



Good point about the spade connectors. Fortunately, a good friend donated some OE style bullet connectors to the cause (thanks Michael!), so as soon as I get the proper crimp tool I'll be redoing that trunk wiring.


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I am used to seeing brembo and powerstop rotors going in the opposite direction. Carry on with the awesome build

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Today I brought the car back home after the driver's side floor was replaced at my friend's shop. Here we are back in the driveway ready to unload.



The install of the replacement floor looks to be top notch. Here's a pic of the new floor and a pic of all the old sheet metal that was removed and tossed into the passenger footwell. :





I will need to apply some seam sealer along the outboard perimeter of the floor repair to fully protect it.  I also had the LF fender repaired and fitted, and had the front fender arches rolled for tire clearance. The rears had already been done. I will be pulling the fender back off the car and sending it out for repaint along with the front spoiler that will be going onto the car. Feeling pretty good about finally getting that floor and fender damage fixed!

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Decided to rebuild the driver's side lower door hinge yesterday. I had replaced the upper hinge with a rebuilt one hoping it would cure my sagging door. No such luck. The lower hinge was even more worn out than the upper. So I purchased a hinge repair kit from Troy Ermish. Before attempting to fix the lower hinge, I decided to first try and fix the worn out upper hinge that was removed from Zeke. This went well as I was able to punch out the old hinge pin with a drift and hammer, and install the new bushings and pin. Now I have a good spare upper hinge.



It was with this new found confidence that I tackled the lower hinge, which proved to be much more of a challenge. I should note that the spring was missing from this hinge, and to date I have made no attempt to find or install a spring. I understand it's a PITA. As for the hinge, I could not get the hinge pin to budge, even using a 3lb sledge with my drift. So off to TSR for some pro help. Mario was able to remove the pin and worn out plastic bushings. He also bead blasted the hinge parts for me. It was at this point that I may have solved the mystery of Zeke's original paint color. Under the red paint there was a distinct layer of yellow!  Until now, I have not found any evidence of the original color on this car, so this was a revelation. Here you can see the yellow paint which looks very similar to the period factory yellow. Of course, no guarantees that this was an original hinge, but it's the most promising info I have to date regarding the original color:



I painted the hinge with rust preventative black paint and re-installed it.



Took me a few hours of fiddling to get the door re-aligned and latching properly, but stoked to have solid door hinges in Zeke!


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So I've been trying to figure out why my steering wheel doesn't fit on Zeke. The signal cancelling pins bottom out before the steering wheel hub is fully seated. This happens with a stock wheel, and with both Datsun hub adapters (Momo and Formuling) that fit just fine on my other '72 510. I pulled the wheel off my other '72 with known original column and it's obvious that the upper column on Zeke is different. Here's the known good '72:




And here is what is in Zeke, also a '72:


It's totally different. There is no snap ring, nor provision for a snap ring, and the distance from the end of the shaft to the bearings is shorter by at least 1cm, which would explain the hub fitment problem.  You can see from the next two pics the difference in length from the end of the shaft to the bearing carrier surface. 1st the "good" '72, then Zeke (after I pulled the upper column out of the car):




It would appear that this is not the correct upper column for a '72 USDM 510. Here's a pic of the entire thing:



You can also see that the oval cutout for the ignition lock in the inner shaft is misregistered with the hole in the outer shaft.  Here's a closeup. The steering wheel end would be to the right:



This would explain why the ignition lock only worked intermittently. There is just barely enough overlap of the oval hole to occasionally engage the steering lock. Curious, I stuck a large screwdriver blade into the oval hole and tried to gently lever the inner shaft to the right. There was spring-like resistance, and it would move, but was threatening to spill out all of the ball bearings at the steering wheel end, so I let it be for now.  I have no idea where this shaft came from. Here's another pic of the hub end which might help someone to possibly identify it:



At any rate, it looks like I'll have to source a proper '72 upper steering column for Zeke (anyone got one you want to sell?).  I'm bummed because I just noticed in the events section that there was a Datsun swapmeet in Long Beach today which could have been a great opportunity. Oh well...

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Well, today I figured out what the problem is with the steering column.  Someone had removed the snap ring, and since the shaft is spring loaded inside the column (learned that from the parts book), the spring expands, recessing the shaft into the column tube by about 1/4"-3/8".  With enough force on the lower end of the shaft I was able to compress the spring and push the shaft out far enough to expose the snap ring groove. I took some measurements and plan to visit the local hardware store to see if they have a suitable snap ring as it is NLA from Nissan, or I might have to order one from McMaster Carr or the like.


Here's the column in my vice. I used a couple of exhaust clamps to hold the column tube while pressing a large socket against the shaft to push it back out towards the steering wheel end.  The second pic is a closeup of the column end where you can now see the exposed snap ring groove.




Relieved to finally get this sorted out. Now my steering wheel will fit AND the ignition lock should work the way it's supposed to!  

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Got my steering column re-installed today. Everything fits properly and works as intended. All it took was a 75 cent snap ring (1" size) from Ace Hardware, and a pair of snap ring pliers from Harbor Freight. Here' the end of the column with the snap ring installed.



In 510s I like my steering wheels a little lower than stock height, so I lowered the column with these hard plastic hexagonal spacers. I think they are actually seat spacers from a 240Z.



Installed the ignition switch, signal lever assy, and new steering wheel. Everything works perfectly now! 



Also bought a tube of seam sealer today, so re-sealing the new floor will be my next task. Unfortunately, I have to report for jury duty on 510 Day tomorrow, which really sucks!  Hoping they let us go early and I have time to work on the car.  Happy 510 Day!

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Been a while since I last updated- 


Re-did the rear sidemarker and license light wiring using proper factory style bullet connectors. 





Seam sealed the floor repair. Used this stuff, Dynatron No. 550 Gray:










Bought some brush-on paint today to cover the seam sealer and coat some surfaces under the frame rails that have escaped painting thus far. 


Also installed the Suspension Techniques (ST) 1" front anti-roll bar and TMC adjustable end link kit. Next steps are to get the repaired and straightened LF fender painted, and sort the engine compartment wiring harness...

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Made some more progress over the last week. Sent the straightened LF fender out for paint, along with the front spoiler. Hope to get them back next week. Brad still has left over paint from when he originally painted the car in 2008 for Randy, so we were able to verify that it was painted BMW Bright Red #314. Brad recalls the car being red or orange originally. Based on what I can see, I'd say it's a pretty good bet it was originally the same color as my other '72, #905 Cherry Red, which some call tomato red since it has a lot of orange in it.


While the fender and spoiler are out getting painted, I did some painting myself. Got a couple quarts of gray Rustoleum Hammered finish paint.



Painted over the red oxide primer on the repaired floor:



Then I got more ambitious and decided to paint the fender wells and inner fenders. Seeing how much easier it would be with the fender removed, I decided to remove the RF fender as well. Here's the LF fender well after I had scraped off any loose undercoating and degreased:



And after brushing on a coat of Rustoleum:






Did the same on the RF fender well:



You might also notice that the entire new front suspension I had previously installed has been removed. It was just easier to paint without the struts and stuff in the way. Also, I needed to remove the front crossmember and TC rods to paint the underside of the frame rails and TC boxes which hadn't been previously addressed. 


While the RF fender was off, I coated the inside. I'll do the same when I get the LF back from Brad. 



Once I get the front crossmember re-installed, I can support the car under the crossmember and finish painting the underside of the floor repair. Then I plan to paint the rear fender wells in the same fashion.  In the meantime, I will need to scrub/degrease the rear fender wells in prep for paint. Then, finally, all the messy work under the car will be a thing of the past and I can get on with assembly!



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