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JohnnyBlaze

New to Ratsun/Datsun. Need 620 buying advice.

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I've been a fan of Datsun since I was a kid and always wanted one.  I decided I needed a small pickup for a back up vehicle, to haul stuff, and a toy to have some fun.  I bought a 1997 Nissan Hardbody and planned to use that, but I decided I finally wanted to get a Datsun.  I'm selling the hardbody to my dad and I've been searching for a 620.  The East coast doesn't offer many options close to me. 

 

My question is should I avoid a potential major project?  I am fairly mechanically inclined and typically do most work myself.  I have no experience with a carbureted vehicle, do not weld, and have never rebuilt an engine.  That being said, I'm going to look at a 1977 620 that has been sitting for 7 years, but "ran when parked" and is complete.  The price is unknown as they told me to "make an offer".  I said I will come look at it and discuss price then.  Based on the pics there is definitely rust and I know that can be typical.  They say the "frame looks solid, bed is rough, and the cab is salvageable with work".  I don't plan it to be a show truck and don't care if it is on the ratty side, but I eventually want it to run, stop, and drive well.  I've done research and have an idea of what areas to look for rot.  I don't want to get a money pit because I could drive further and buy a running truck for a couple thousand dollars.  Thanks for any advice.  I would include 2 pictures, but I'm not sure how to add them.

 

 

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Ah, the old "Ran when parked" lol

 

If it is a backup vehicle then having a bit of a project isn't a big deal. 

 

Any way you could show us the pics you have? 

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If it 'ran when parked' why was it parked?

 

I would look farther afield like the left coast where rain washes off any salt that may be used on the roads. 

 

Find the most complete truck you can find for the money that you can spend, rather that spend 3X as much fixing and finding the rare parts on the wrong coast..

 

Find one that drives and drive it home or have it shipped. 

 

I would prefer the '78 or '79 as it has up-graded braking with front disc brakes rather than drums that need constant adjusting. Has ball joint steering rather than king pins,  internally regulated alternator and high output electronic ignition (EI) all not available on earlier trucks. From '77 on, a 5 speed was optional so you might find one so equipped.  

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3 hours ago, ]2eDeYe said:

Ah, the old "Ran when parked" lol

 

If it is a backup vehicle then having a bit of a project isn't a big deal. 

 

Any way you could show us the pics you have? 

 

A project is one thing, I’m just concerned for a money pit if I have to redo almost everything..lol. I am thinking If I could get it for $500 or less it may be worth having anyway and find one that is already running and driving. 

 

I only have 2 pics and I’m not sure how to upload them to here since I don’t have the url.  I think I figured out how to upload the pics I have.

 

http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm234/JMM92EG6/Ratsun/1977 Datsun 620 PA2.png

http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm234/JMM92EG6/Ratsun/1977 Datsun 620 PA.png

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31 minutes ago, datzenmike said:

If it 'ran when parked' why was it parked?

 

I would look farther afield like the left coast where rain washes off any salt that may be used on the roads. 

 

Find the most complete truck you can find for the money that you can spend, rather that spend 3X as much fixing and finding the rare parts on the wrong coast..

 

Find one that drives and drive it home or have it shipped. 

 

I would prefer the '78 or '79 as it has up-graded braking with front disc brakes rather than drums that need constant adjusting. Has ball joint steering rather than king pins,  internally regulated alternator and high output electronic ignition (EI) all not available on earlier trucks. From '77 on, a 5 speed was optional so you might find one so equipped.  

 

I have been looking all over the country and do see some on the west coast. I had a vehicle shipped from Florida a long time ago and the price wasn’t bad. I’m just concerned what it could cost now. It kinda sucks to have to pay close to $1,000 or more for shipping on a truck that I pay $3,000 or less for. I was hoping to be no more than $3k for a running truck initially. I know I’ll spend more money on mods down the road, but want to spread that out as I can. I agree that a 78 or 79 is the ideal years. 

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Not a bad looking little truck. I would take a battery and see if it fires with a bit of gas down the carb. If it fires then I might believe the ran when parked.

 

Disc brake upgrades should be looked into no matter what year you pick up. 

You will spend about the same amount in the long run, if you are going through the brakes completely.

 

1977%20Datsun%20620%20PA2.png

 

1977%20Datsun%20620%20PA.png

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Well I went to look at it and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it could be.  Bonus is that it’s a 1978 with front disks and 5 speed. The kid had the wrong year listed. The engine is not locked up, the oil is clean, doors shut well, windows roll up and down easily, door cards and headliner clean, and it’s complete. It will need rockers and the bed may or may not be salvageable, but it seems like a great find. The story is the old farmer next door used it to haul stuff around the farm. He got too old to Farm and parked the truck. He died and the neighbor got the truck recently to flip it/part it out. The farmer might even be the original owner. I left a deposit and will pick it up ASAP. 

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Sweet!

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Buy it it will buff out!  LOL

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