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'73 240z - Project Build


demo243

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Picked up a '73 240z today! Been hunting for a Z for a little while now and this one popped up down in MD. The price was right and a deal was made!

 

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Its a project for sure, but a solid runner. Already 2.8L swapped from a 280zx.

 

First plan of business is to get it buttoned up to pass safety inspection here and get it Reg'd.

 

Then wheels, coilovers, front air dam, rear lip... 

Long term - probably roll bar, race seats, wildwood brakes, cam, and some side drafts or Moto carbs. 

Lots to come!

Edited by demo243
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4 hours ago, datsunfreak said:

That is very cool!  👍

 

Did they swap in the EFI also? 


Deleted all the EFI - as I would have done too. It’s running SUs. At some point would like to swap to triple OERs or maybe some Mikuni Moto carbs.

 

I’ll get a few more photos up soon.

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51 minutes ago, yenpit said:

Nice!  What part of MD (I grew up in Silver Spring) & where did you find this?  I would say it looks like a GREAT Z to start with!! 😎


Ellicot City outside of Baltimore.

 

It was a Facebook marketplace find- I jumped on it basically as soon as it was posted and the guy was nice enough to hold on to it for me to get down there the following weekend. Nice guy who just decided he didn’t have time to finish it and decided to replace it with an S2000.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Ok- Some updates on the Z

 

Ultimately I ended up taking a few steps backward with the car before I can move forward... 

 

The car had quite a funky musty smell to it, and I ultimately decided that the vinyl was too far gone to be saved - moldy on top and underneath - so I ripped it all out! Little did I know there would be so much residue and sound deadener left behind... 

 

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With the funk I decided the seats had to go too.. I have been planning on putting some proper race seats in the 510, so I had the idea to steal the seats out of that car, drop them in the Z, and get race buckets for the 510... 

 

Sounds simple... but its not... stole the passenger seat from the 510, but the WRX seats were just to big for the Z.

 

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I have a set of sport seats on order now... but I fear they may be backordered... more to come later.

I mounted up a hatch spoiler. Initially I bought a 432 style fiberglass one but the quality on it was pretty poor... lucky for me a carbon BRE one popped up locally right at the same time so I snagged that - should have just paid the extra hundred bucks and bought a carbon one in the first place, but I was really after a flat black look initially so figured the fiberglass was worth the savings... oh well. 

 

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Also ordered up a Xenon Urethane air dam - quality on this was pretty poor (terrible) but I plan for this car to be quite low, so figured it was worth it over the chance of shattering carbon or fiberglass- It will definitely need some reinforcing, but Ill deal with that later...

 

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Next up was dealing with the sound deadener - to see what was underneath... I tried briefly with a chisel, but that seemed like a terrible idea... 

So I went the Dry Ice route- 

 

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It worked wonders! I almost couldn't believe it! Dump it on... let it sit... hear it crack... wack it with a dead blow hammer a couple times and pop it right off with a putty knife. Took about 40lbs of Dry Ice pellets (~$60) and a couple hours.

 

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I was a bit afraid of what I might find... because she is definitely crusty.... 

But lucked out- only one small hole on the driver side and some rust - and a couple pin holes on the passenger side. 

 

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I will also admit a mistake here... I knew there was a rust hole near the battery tray from the photos I got, but in the moment I didn't even check it when I bought the car... Its TOAST... something I will have to deal with at some point. I don't think it would have changed the purchase... the seller was very straight forward and fair with his price - so if I did it again I would likely still buy it. 

 

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Got some new wheels on the way too!

 

Next steps--- 

 

Get some seats back in it, wire up a few things and get it to pass MA safety inspection. 

 

I like the no front bumper look... but I think a pair of black bumpers would work nicely on the car. 

 

Need to make some suspension decisions--- coilover for sure --- but do I do a home-brew budget build, spec big $$$ on T3 Evolved coil overs, or go BC racing. BC is definitely the best bang for your buck and where I am leaning, but need to pick up a spare set of strut housings as donors.

 

Also need to decide on carburation - The car has SUs on it (and I have 2 more sets) but its just not my cup of tea. With the value of the Yen being so low right now I can pick up a set of OERs with manifold, heat shield, and small parts for a really good price (ie sell off all my SUs to cover it). But I have a dream of running 6 Mikuni HSR Moto carbs... but that is not a simple thing, and will require some fab and figuring stuff out, only a handful of people running them and not much info... so leaning toward grabbing some OER sidedrafts for now.

 

Short term also need to decide what to coat the floors in... 

 

More to come!

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On 4/15/2023 at 8:59 PM, demo243 said:

Also ordered up a Xenon Urethane air dam - quality on this was pretty poor (terrible) but I plan for this car to be quite low, so figured it was worth it over the chance of shattering carbon or fiberglass- It will definitely need some reinforcing, but Ill deal with that later...

 

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For "reinforcement"?  😁 

 

https://skillard.com/products/front-lip-splitter-type-1-datsun-240z-260z-280z

 

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Bolts to crossmember underneath...

 

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18 hours ago, datsunfreak said:

 

For "reinforcement"?  😁 

 

https://skillard.com/products/front-lip-splitter-type-1-datsun-240z-260z-280z

 

S30Type1FrontLipSplitter2_600x.jpg?v=167

 

 

Bolts to crossmember underneath...

 

S30Type1FrontLipSplitter11_700x.jpg?v=16


I’ve  seen that- on my radar, but a bit more then I’m looking for. I’ll probably just use a bit of aluminum stock in a few places- at least in the center back to the front valence mount.

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7 hours ago, Duncan said:

On the plus side, those floors like really nice for a car from the East.  A running/driving s30 with little to no rust at a good p[rice is a very scarce commodity these days..

 

 

 

Yes they are! Most everything else I've seen in this price range was riddled with holes and rust, and barely if it all running.

The more I tear into it the more I wonder if it was a deal.... Short answer is yes I think it was, and am still very excited for it! Just taking longer then I hoped and a bit more work... but only cause I'm being picky.

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38 minutes ago, demo243 said:

Yes they are! Most everything else I've seen in this price range was riddled with holes and rust, and barely if it all running.

The more I tear into it the more I wonder if it was a deal.... Short answer is yes I think it was, and am still very excited for it! Just taking longer then I hoped and a bit more work... but only cause I'm being picky.

 

Datsunfreak and I often discuss that very topic, as we are similarly picky...

 

Looks like a fun car. Good luck with it.  I'll be following your thread.

 

 

 

 

Edited by Duncan
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1 hour ago, iceman510 said:

Plans to go back to original orange eventually?

 

Maybe? I do like the orange color - but also wouldn't mind something dark. Originally wanted black, but now I lean more toward a dark navy. Paint is currently pretty low on the list at the moment, and I don't mind the ratty silver.

Interior will be painted black shortly - at least the floors- might keep the fender wells, hatch doors, and a bit more orange. Trying to decide right now. Actually kinda wish I left the rear sound deadening in so that the whole back half would be orange, but wanted to get under there and make sure it was solid underneath.

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1 hour ago, demo243 said:

 

Maybe? I do like the orange color - but also wouldn't mind something dark. 

 

There's a few different oranges, and that is the best one by far. 👍

 

Same boat though. I like using the original colors, mine was 904 Ivory, love that color but it's a little "basic"? But I don't think my body work skills are good enough for navy blue, though I'd love it. 😁

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3 hours ago, datsunfreak said:

 

There's a few different oranges, and that is the best one by far. 👍

 

Same boat though. I like using the original colors, mine was 904 Ivory, love that color but it's a little "basic"? But I don't think my body work skills are good enough for navy blue, though I'd love it. 😁

Yea my body work skills are definitely not there…. And I’m sure my wallet isn’t deep enough either….

 

I need to find a up and coming or semi-retires painter willing to do some side work…

 

Or the most likely scenario is I’ll run it ratty for the next 10 years. 
 

mostly afraid of what else will be found if it gets torn down further.

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6 hours ago, datsunfreak said:

 

 mine was 904 Ivory, love that color but it's a little "basic"? But I don't think my body work skills are good enough for navy blue, though I'd love it. 😁

 

My Mom had a white '71 and bought it new.  I agree it was a pretty color, but very plain looking.  She did let the dealer add on some D-slot (jellybean) wheels on it, though 👍 I think an S30 would look good in the blue that I used on my wagon.

 

 

 

 

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22 minutes ago, benzo said:

Cool! I had a 73 with a L28 and SU's and the Xenon air dam and was such a fun car. Glad to see others have fun with these cars. If i'm lucky I can get another Z again.

 

 

Thanks!

there are still some deals out there- but they move quick! 

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21 hours ago, demo243 said:

I need to find a up and coming or semi-retires painter willing to do some side work…

 

This is what I have always done. I am friends with a retired painter who has done all my cars in the past 12+ years, but he said he doesn't want to do any more. But he did say he would coach me a little if I end up doing it myself.

 

Maybe take a class? 

 

 

Also, my feeling has always been that body work is easy, especially if you're willing to redo it a few times.  😁

Edited by datsunfreak
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  • 2 weeks later...

Wow, that thing is SOLID for an east coast car!!  The best repair panels BY FAR are out of kfvintagejdm.com.  Hes has the battery tray, the firewall section & the inner fender under the battery tray!

 

The race/resto shop where I used to work has a few dark blue Z's, two are a late model Nissan truck blue!  Check out Ignite Performance in Arvada CO on Facebook..........I think the website is down!

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On 5/1/2023 at 8:27 PM, yenpit said:

Wow, that thing is SOLID for an east coast car!!  The best repair panels BY FAR are out of kfvintagejdm.com.  Hes has the battery tray, the firewall section & the inner fender under the battery tray!

 

The race/resto shop where I used to work has a few dark blue Z's, two are a late model Nissan truck blue!  Check out Ignite Performance in Arvada CO on Facebook..........I think the website is down!

KF Vintage was my plan. Will likely grab the panels soon just to have them on hand for when I can find someone to weld em in or I finally decide to learn myself.

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