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soymilk

1973 economy restoration

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First time here as a member

I live in west los angeles. I just got two quotes for body work on my 1973 240z. The original color of the car is Datsun color code 115. It was repainted in red by the P.O. The car has a scratch like dent on the passenger door ( not deep at all) one ding on the rear tailight panel and one ding on the left corner edge of the hood. Two rust bubbles (2mm in diameter) on the windshield cowl cover, thats it for rust. I love red 240Z's but the P.O replaced the dash with a crack free one and the engine compartment and wheel wheels are still looking good with the original blue metallic paint so I decided to go original. The interior is white ( aka beige or off-white). I need to have that restored as well. Any suggestions for body and interior shops in the los angeles area that take good care of Z cars are welcome. If you have pictures of your car painted in the 115 color code please send them to me at: oatmilk@hotmail.com

Both quotes came within a $200 of each other.

R&I front & rear-$150

Strip paint down to bare metal for cracks and chips-$600

Repair dings & dents ( whole vehicle), remove parts to gain access-$500

Primer and wet sand car complete and paint car complete in BC/CC $1850

Paint door jam, underhood, inside trunk-$295

Color sand & buff complete-$300

Total-$3695, other shop was $3500. 1-2 months to do the work

What do you think? I have seen both shops work and they both are good. One shop will use Dupont and the other PPG. I asked about imported paint systems...Sikkens, Glassurit and so on, and the typical response was they are good but your mostly paying for the name and importing costs.

Thanks for the help in advance,

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Prices look right but I still shutter at $3500 for body and paint... I would ask for references and follow up from that direction to make sure that the people that have used them before got things in the "two months" and that the job was done right...

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In the SF Bay Area you'll pay a minimum of $4000 if you want paint and minimal body work (no major repairs) done "right". And you may have to wait 6 months or more to get your car into the shop.

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Hey he said he wanted something inexpensive. Either that Earl scheib or One Day Paint and Auto. Maybe to him the car is only worth so much any more might be a waste of money. Im not trying to put words in his mouth im just taking a wild guest of what he is thinking.

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He also said "body and interior shops in the los angeles area that take good care of Z cars are welcome." Having someone learn (and make the inevitable learners mistakes on your car) is not what most people would call taking good care of a car. But, hey if it works for you.....go for it.

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When he said economy restoration i was thinking the lower part of the spectrum. Just enough to make his car look ok. Well there are shops that might not specialize in z but does a good job with other cars. Like Modern, classics, low riders and so on. LA is the place theres tons of shops with good prices. Its a judgement call i seen people and knew people that spent thousands and thousands of dollars on paint jobs and it did not hold up. While i meet other who spent little to nothing and to this day their car is still looking good.

Just shop around some more and fine the right price for you. If they have a photo book of what they done in the past that should help a lot. Also look at their past history problem with BBB.

Good luck,

Ah yeah if you find a place that you like at a cheap i mean economy price hit me up as well. :D

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In my case we spent $3145 which included bodywork (battery tray damage, rust damage below gas door). My car had never been hit and there was still a lot of prep to get her ready for paint. All the rivet holes for the door ding strip had to be filled and sanded. Price included a new windshield and installing all new weatherstripping after paint by the glass guy. Mine is def not a restoration but more of VG refresh for a nice Z driver. Paint is BASF Diamont BC/CC Nissan code 611. Car was painted everywhere but the engine bay itself and interior. Because it was done by a regular body shop it took 4 months......

http://members.cardomain.com/jmark

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Jmark I like the work on the car do you have any before pictures. Im not sure if it going to help soymilk, but it will help me to decided how much work and money i want to spend on my car.

Solmilk i took out my Z today and while i was driving through El Monte(LA area) i saw so many body shops it was crazy. So i think you should be able to find a good price. There going to compete for your business.

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Professionals use the words "economy" and "restoration" in a single sentance in only one way, and that is to say that economy and restoration do not belong in the same sentance. If the car is going to be sold, most knowledgeable buyers would rather have the car as is than have a cheep coat of paint hiding the care the owner has taken of the car. A cheep paint job is always done to hide something-and most people know that.

If you go the school route, talk to the teacher and the kids, the more they "buy in" to the project, the better the outcome will be.

Will

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Thanks to all for the help. Jmark your car looks great. HLS I understand what your saying.

There is no free lunch. But that is the problem with loving these cars. I will not paint it myself. I dont plan to sell the car. I want a good paint job. What constitutes good? Go to www.autobody101.com and try to find out. :cross-eye . When you pay $1500 for the car and then shell out another 3500, that's not lunch money. But in los angeles there isnt much between the 1 days and custom work? Using good paint (ppg,glassurit, spies...) and good prep work, whats the difference between a good paint job and a awesome paint job? I pay 3500 and the next guy pays 7500, what is an average joe like me going to see thats makes the difference. Granted I'm not going to pay 7500 anyway, but never the less I'm still curious. ( I did pay $5000.00 for a paint job on my old 72 240z back in my younger days). I remember a friend of mine saying that some of the show car paint jobs cost >$10,000. For custom yes, but for a regular solid color, I dont get it. Maybe its as simple as good prep (so many hours) versus awesome prep ( many more hours)?

I guess I could keep shopping around, but what am I looking for? A clean shop, satsified customers, a owner that cares about my z car, a shop that has done z cars before... I figure one of the greatest uses of a site like this could be customer feedback on the work people have had done on their cars. Think of the possibilities :lick:

Example:

Click on customer/consumer reviews > Click on auto body repair > Click on the state/city you live in > browse customer reviews for the body work done by shops/individuals in your area with a simple rating 1-5. No need to search every post with body shop in it. I guess I'm spoiled from the audio review sites I search from time to time.

Thanks for the advice and help. You guys are great. I'll keep everyone posted.

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You might want to ask Dennis at Classic Datsun Motorsports for his recommendation of a body shop, or ask for recommendations from a local car club.

The difference in "restoraton" body work and what you get at a body shop that does regular (i.e. insurance or standard) body work is in all the execution of all steps of the job. Prep, Application, and Finish work.

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Carl,

Great suggestion. Since I'm so tied up with family matters all the time, I rarely have a chance to go to car meetings. I'll try emailing Dennis and the local clubs.

thank you,

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I'm in the same boat as soymilk. I am ready to paint my 75 280Z. I don't want to sell the car, I do want a nice paint job. I also want to drive the car as a shared daily driver along with my 81 280ZX, with the 280Z getting the lions share because well its just a more fun car, just not as comfortable.

So I anguish over spending 4-5K on a paint job and stress over every chip or ding. Or I can pay 2K get a nice 2 stage paint job with quality paint and decent prep and not get all stressed out when there is a dump truck full of dirt and rocks on the freeway ahead of me, which happens a lot here in LA.

Good Prep, a clean shop, and good craftsmen are critical, but so was price.

So I decided that I would go with a Maico, 1 Day type of place but I would investigate all the ones in the area and find out which ones were the best.

I found two places which I have seen their work, and it is good. You have to look hard to find flaws but they are there but hard to find. I am going with the 1day in Glendale. For about 2K I am getting a 2 stage paint job with some minor body work and rust repair. I have only a couple of dings to fix and some rust on the cowl. I seen several Z's painted there and they look good. Even some that were painted a few years ago. So that another alternative for you. One other thing, they said they would need the car for a week. I admit they won't take the car to the metal, but if it looks good and lasts and your not afraid to drive the car every day, that good enough for me.

Whats good enough for others can be different. I have posted some before pics. I about three weeks I can post some after pics.

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I'm sorry, I read the title to this post and said "That's an Oxymoron". But either way, to each his own.

My motto; Pay cheap, pay twice.

You said you had no intentions of ever selling the car. Wouldn't you want a paint that will last that long.

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