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'73 Z and '74 Z


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Not sure what to say or where to start, but I've been a lurker periodically throughout the years on Ratsun. Back when i was in the military living in Georgia, i picked up my first Z and stumbled upon Ratsun and a couple other forums while reading. had a few Z cars back then and got rid of them all over time and haven't had much of a project since then other than my motorcycles. I'm happy to say that I am finally back in the Datsun world with a couple of Z's i recently acquired. Both cars are in pretty rough shape to say the least, but i plan to save them both in time. 


The first car i snagged was on a whim after a buddy sent me a facebook marketplace link in messenger. Its a 1973 240Z that's been mostly stripped and already blasted. its got a lot of cancer in it but compared to what I have been seeing around my area in Wisconsin, it was a gem. 


Edit: trying to embed pics from flickr..... anyone know how to make it work? the insert image tab doesn't work....



Edited by wiscodato
pics dont load
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as far as the body in concerned, i have 99% of the bolt on panels with a few things here and there that need to be repaired. 


the glass was left in the car when it was blasted so im getting new glass all around, the tail light panel was torn by the previous owner and i have to try to find one to weld in. 


other than that, the body is actually in ok shape. that being said, it needs massive interior repairs. The sunroof hole in the roof, both floors, fire wall on passenger side, floor area behind both seats, lower rear fenders, both inner rear fenders, hatch sill, lower rear valance...... it needs a lot of love for sure. currently on the hunt for all the panels I am going to need for the repairs.


(figured out how to get the pics to load finally...)

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On to the '74..... Originally it was going to be a parts car to cut panels for the 240. When I found it on the marketplace on facebox it was listed as a 280 from 77. drove 3 hours north to check it out only to find out that it was not in fact a 280 from 77, but a 260z from mid 74? not sure on the exact month yet. I also didn't get a title with it so I'm working that out right now too. structurally this 260 is in better shape than the 240, but the previous owners had a sick sense of how to modify a car. there is easily 100 gallons or so of bondo on the whole thing. the entire front end was welded together (horribly i might add) and then bondo'd to look ok. so the entire front end panels are shot. hood, fenders, buckets, lower valance... all of it. the saving grace is that the motor turns over smooth, the oil is clean, and the carbs are complete. As far as panels, im not sure what all is going to be needed just yet because im afraid to dig into the bondo yet other than tearing off the front end. ill get into it over time and see where it leads.




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i got antsy with the 260z sitting in front of my face for a few days and started cleaning it out and pulling off the front end. tried getting the motor to start a little too but was not successful. (found out why later during the tear down)

















during the tear down, i found the original color....... its gorgeous. probably going to paint it the original color when its done.






thats all for now. driving down to illinois for parts tomorrow. hoping to score a few things that i cant buy online and some that are a bit too expensive for my tastes. ill try to keep up with updates as things progress

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Went on a scavenger hunt today and made out like a bandit. got a line on a guy a few hours south of me that had a parts car that was getting scrapped, so i made the drive and got whatever i could that was usable. roof skin (without sun roof), passenger side quarter panel, tail light panel, both door windows, both quarter windows, a complete hatch, and a couple other small bits. everything will need to be cleaned up, but its in much better shape than it looks. 





looks like i know what im spending my turkey day vacation doing..... cant wait to get into it.

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got a little work done on the Z's last night. got the roof panel ready for the 240 and started cleaning up the 260 for a quarter panel replacement. the amount of bondo that came off the 260.....holy crap....





this is the hell that is the 260......





tonight ill be cutting out the bad panel on the 260 and fitting the replacement. i might also start cutting out the roof on the 240 if i get to feeling gutsy.....  thanks for looking.

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got some more done on the 260........ and its going to be a hell of a job to save this car. definitely overwhelmed with the amount of rot im falling into, but ill keep chugging along until its done. on with the pics...


first thing I did tonight was get the donor panel cleaned up a bit to see about test fitting it to the 260.




Once the quarter was mostly cleaned up, (it will still need patch work later) I got into the bad quarter on the 260. I started out by cutting an opening for the gas door on the donor panel to fit through to test fit the donor panel. which kind of backfired because once i saw how much needed to come out, I got distraced




these next two pictures are the longer section i cut out above the wheel arch....... the previous owners can kiss my backside for this.....



after i got started, i just kept going until i got the rest of the back end of the quarter panel out. i didnt get pics of where i left off tho. ill grab some tomorrow if i get out in the garage again. 




just in case anyone cares to see just how much bondo was used on this car..... heres a taste. its the little section of the wheel arch that i pulled out along the way...



time for a nap. tomorrow is another day. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I feel ya..........22 years in SW Michigan where classic cars are simply rotted...........Colorado is a playground, cuz they didn't use salt until about 10 years ago.  I have a line on some Z's in Western Iowa that we can't justify the logistics of picking them up, the older guys that have them are NOT computer savy, so I'm gonna try to help them find good home(s).  I will PM you here on Ratsun.............



Denver CO

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5 hours ago, yenpit said:

I feel ya..........22 years in SW Michigan where classic cars are simply rotted...........Colorado is a playground, cuz they didn't use salt until about 10 years ago.  I have a line on some Z's in Western Iowa that we can't justify the logistics of picking them up, the older guys that have them are NOT computer savy, so I'm gonna try to help them find good home(s).  I will PM you here on Ratsun.............



Denver CO


if you do manage to get a hold of those cars or some contact info for the guys that have them, let me know. id gladly make the 5 hours or so drive to pick up a couple parts cars to get things rolling again. 


as for these two old ladies, they are on hold right now. got a few paying jobs in the garage at the moment. once the holidays are done, i should have a little more free time to get some more work done. hopefully ill have a few more panels on hand to get some more rot taken out. 

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