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Waking the sleeping beast?


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Hi There.

I have been offered a free '73 that has been parked for the last couple of years. Apparently the hood release cable broke and the car got parked and left. What would you guys think needs replacing in starting the car up? I was thinking that I would use fresh gas, clean out the float bowls, and replace items as neccesary just to get the car to run. Since my experience is wholly with MGs, I thought that I would ask you guys what you thought might need work.

Thanks,

Mike

quintale013.jpg

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That hood scoop is called the "Competition Hood Vent". It was offered as a last ditch effort to resolve the vapor lock problem that plagued some of the early cars, mostly 1973 models, only when application of the 3 different dealer "Modification Kits" failed to do the trick. The idea behind it was let the hot air escape from the engine compartment and let the coool air in. It required cutting a large hole in the hood.

Carl has an article on the dealer mods here: http://www.zhome.com/ZCMnL/tech/73Mods.html and a link on that page to some pics and a further explanation here: http://zhome.com/History/ComHood.htm.

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If you are inclined, I'd love to get a plug of that hood vent to reproduce them. I'll more than cover you $$ wise so you know you'll get it back. Otherwise, if there is someone in your local area that does fiberglass work investigate the cost of producing the plug and additional hood vents. I'll go in with $$ to get one of these. PM me if you're interested.

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Hi Mike, welcome to the group. Man I love a Z with American Racing Libra wheels. Nice looking find you have there.

The fuel tank probably need a good clean out. New rubber fuel lines at the tank and in the engine bay as well. If its still got the "flat top" carbs on it, then you might have some trouble.

Enrique can certainly help you if you're in his neck of the woods.

Good luck and have fun.

Chris A.

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Mikemeade,

I saw your posts on Classic Motorsports' board - glad to see you picked it up! As one poster mentioned, that's a rare competition hood - you could probably sell that to someone here and use the money raised to put back into the Z (take ezzzzz up on his offer!).

At a casual glance, it's tough to say what it needs - you also need to decide if you want it completely done over or just refreshed. Some people here know I am one of the "purists" - since 240Z's are becoming more cherished and rare, I'd go the restoration route...it's gonna cost you, but these are special cars as you'll soon find out. As an owner of a classic Brit car ('66 E-Type), I get as much enjoyment out of my Z as I do any other vehicle I own.

This is the best Z board bar none. Many are here to help...good luck!!

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Hi Mike:

First - Don't get near the car with a starting battery.... until you have everything ready to actually start the car. Can't tell you how many people damage a perfectly good engine, simply because they get in a hurry - and want to see if it will crank over, let alone start. You don't want to wipe out a good cam, or scuff the rings/cylinders by forcing crud, that's built up from sitting for prolonged periods past the rings or running dry cam lobes over their rockers... So lets hope no one had dinked with the car... before you got it...

Did you get the hood open yet?...

Prior To Start-up:

1. As mentioned, I'd drain the gas tank and see what comes out. If it's full of rusty partials - drop the tank and have it boiled out (some radiator repair shops off that service). Plan on replacing the old rubber fuel lines as well as the vapor recovery lines that run into the passenger compartment. You will more than likely have to do this anyway - as the vapor recovery lines leak gasoline vapor into the passenger compartment - and it will give you headaches and drive you out of the car. Do it now and be done with it. It's not fun, takes some time - but you'll be glad you did it all at once....

2. As mentioned, replace all the fuel lines in the engine compartment.

3. No doubt you need to check the carb's for operation - the vacuum slides get stuck... pull them apart and clean them... The flat tops look odd - but they are pretty much the same as the earlier SU's.. as far a basic operation goes..

4. Might as well replace the upper and lower radiator hoses - you'll have to do that anyway - do it now before you loose the fresh coolant you put in later.

5. Pull the spark plugs and poor a couple ounces of ATF in the cylinders... let it sit over night.. poor a little more in the next day... then - see if you can rotate the crank pulley by hand... if you have a large Strap Wrench it helps... of course you'll remove the old fan belt first - as you have already bought a new one... (when you bought the new hoses, oil, filter, coolant)... If you can't rock the crank back and forth by hand - put the car in low gear and push the car forward/backward (air the tires up and it's easier to hand push!). The idea here is to break the cylinder rings loose, and get some oil between them and cylinder walls. The ATF is very high detergent and very thin... Once you break the cylinders loose by rocking the car - poor a bit more ATF in the cylinders and see if you can now rock the engine back and forth by hand...

6 - Now drain the old oil - replace with fresh oil and new filter...

8. Install new NGK BP6ES spark plugs

9. Install new starting battery... and make sure that the oil battery cables are in good shape and very clean at the terminals..

10. Remove the valve cover - and poor some clean oil over the cam lobes and rocker arm pads..replace the valve cover - (just check to be sure all the rockers are on/in-place..)

11. pull the wire from the coil - and crank the engine over rapidly - you should at least see the oil pressure gauge move... at least a little to indicate your getting oil pressure... replace the coil wire and crank it over - it will take a few seconds to get fuel though the new lines and into the carb.'s... USE THE CHOKE! (you almost always have to choke the old Z's to get them started when the engine is cold).

If it doesn't start - then you can start checking for Fuel at the Carb.'s - and Spark at the plugs etc...

From the picture - it looks like a car worth saving...

good luck,

Carl B.

Carl Beck

Clearwater, FL USA

http://ZHome.com

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Excellent tips Carl,

Might I suggest oiling the cam and rockers before trying to turn the motor over with a wrench. Who knows how long the valve train had to drain off the oil.

Otherwise, you've got plenty here to get going on. I wish I could help you, I love doing this kind of thing.

Chris A.

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Thanks guys! This is exactly the information I was looking for. I am in Portland, Oregon. I don't even have the car yet, but I am driving to Boise this weekend to get it. I still can't believe that it will be free, but I guess that I'll find out on Sunday.

It looks like I'll be making a shopping list of hoses, gaskets etc. Enrique, can you tell me if there is a local place that sells Z parts? or am I best getting them online? I have the next couple of weeks to spend evenings with the car, so I would like to have as many parts on hand before I start.

Here's a no brainer question, all the nuts and bolts should be metric right? I'm used to standard nuts and bolts so I may have to look into some more tools...

I figure i'll take a look at the hood when I get it back. It looks kinda funky, and I'm not a real fan, but you never know how it will look in person. I kinda like that it makes the car kinda rare.

And Carl, thanks for the super post. That will really come in handy.. I plan on making the car a driver, and then evaluating my options. Most likely there will be pressure from the wife to sell it, but I've always wanted a Z. I figure I have the ragtop MG for summer, and the hardtop for less dry days. Now if I only had a two car garage, I could make them both perfect!

The car has been sitting two years, and the owners wife is giving it to me for free, title and all. I couldn't be happier to try to save this car.

Thanks again for all your help, and I'll try to be back with updates!

Mike

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Here's a no brainer question, all the nuts and bolts should be metric right? I'm used to standard nuts and bolts so I may have to look into some more tools...

Yes, everything is metric. Fortunately almost everything you do on the car is 10mm, 12mm, 14mm, or 17mm. Of course your existing 3/8 or 1/2 socket wrenches and extension bars will work since even metric sockets come in those drive sizes. I like the somewhat recent ratcheting combination wrenches and you really only need the four sizes there as well.

In your situation there's only exception to the rule: you'll probably want to pick up a 27mm socket for the crank pulley for when you want to turn the engine over by hard.

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Also, I would turn the engine over a few times prior to installing the plugs. Just in case there was an abundance of fluid in the combustion chambers. This could save you some bent rods. Enjoy your new find! The second car I ever had was a 65 MGB. I love my 260Z, it's BIG FuN!

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Well I got the car home! It looks pretty good, especially since it turns out that it hasn't ran in 10 years, not two like I thought. I'm working on the hood, but it is proving to be a real tough job. Escanlon, I pulled the bolts at the fron of the hood, and I pulled two at the bottom side of the latch. I am not getting any movement.... Do I need to do the ones on the top side of the latch? I'm having some insane trouble getting to those....

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The Latch Pin attaches to the hood with a pair of 10mm bolts. When you remove these the hood will be free to move.

Since you're mentioning that you've removed a pair from the bottom of the latch, I'm wondering if the two you removed were for the latch mechanism which is attached to the body. If so, the pin is still secured to the latch and the hood won't be free to remove.

Let us know if you're still having trouble with that.

E

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The Latch Pin attaches to the hood with a pair of 10mm bolts. When you remove these the hood will be free to move.

Since you're mentioning that you've removed a pair from the bottom of the latch, I'm wondering if the two you removed were for the latch mechanism which is attached to the body. If so, the pin is still secured to the latch and the hood won't be free to remove.

Let us know if you're still having trouble with that.

E

That sounds exactly like what I did. I'll have to spend some time tonight trying to get the other two bolts. I could get a wrench on one of them last night, but it was getting late, and I was tired from the trip to Boise and back. Thanks for the help!

Mike

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That sounds exactly like what I did. I'll have to spend some time tonight trying to get the other two bolts. I could get a wrench on one of them last night, but it was getting late, and I was tired from the trip to Boise and back. Thanks for the help!

Mike

Hi Mike:

If you can get to the bolts - why not just put a screwdriver into the bottom of the latch - and push the lever to open/release? I've never had to remove bolts - to open a hood with a broken hood release cable. Is something else jammed?

FWIW,

Carl B.

post-3609-14150798068375_thumb.jpg

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As far as I know, nothing is jammed, I just can't really see all that well in there, and this is my first Z. That image you attached is very helpful. I could get a wrench on the hood nuts with the very ends of my fingertips last night, but I was at the extreme limits of my reach. I'll have to see if I have any better luck with a screwdriver tonight.

Just so I am clear, it looks like I will need to push from the passenger side towards the drivers side?

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It is also very helpful - if someone can stand up above and alternatively press down on the hood - and release - as you push the lever with the screwdriver blade - then they can grab the hood and pull up as it releases... Sometimes if you are by yourself - the hood still won't pop open like it should - even if you have moved the release lever far enough...

glad the diagram was helpful...

Carl B.

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The hood is off! I tried the push on the lever thing, but it just wasn't working for me. I figured that I would give the two top nuts a try again, and it worked. I guess working in the dark with a flashlight while tired was not really the best way to approach the situation! Today I could easily see what I needed to get at, and removed the two bolts connecting the latch to the hood.

So far things look pretty good. The SUs slide with no problems at all, the sparkplugs cameout easy. The oil even looks to be a good color.

The previous owner drained the coolant from the block from below, so I am going to have to flush the cooling system to make sure there isn't much dirt in the system.

I'm off to the store to get ATF! I'm pretty excited. besides dirt, there isn't much bad about the car at all. That and the wasps nests that seem to be everywhere. I have removed about 10 dead nests, and I can see one that is alive.... I'll have to take care of that before they take care of me!

Oh, and the wheels stay. I love 'em too!

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After working on the car for the evening, I can tell that this car has had some work. It looks like the car has a header and a glasspack muffler. The carbs look like they have been backdated to round top carbs too... I assume there is a perfomance advantage in that? There are some fog lights below the grille that look aftermarket, the way they mounted in there. (crappy)

The down side, is that I cleaned the interior. I am pretty sure that the owner told me the car hadn't run for ten years... Inside I found magazines, paperwork, reciepts, etc, and they were all dated 1990. I am pretty sure that this car hasn't ran in 16 years. Man, I thought that it would be easy to get the sucker running if it had only been two years, but 16... There is so much more that I think I have to do...

Tommorrow, I will try to take pictures, there are some more questions that I have that just make more sense with images.

Mike

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Mike:

If you can, try to make it to PIR this Wednesday after 4:30pm for the Beaches Cruise-In.

Several of us in the PDX Area try to make it there weekly, and it will give you an opportunity to not only meet us but also ask questions that will help you in getting her running and looking good.

Our Z numbers are slowly growing, where it used to be only my 71 Gold 240, now we have as many as 5 of the early body style and even a couple of Z32's on occassion. Haven't seen a Z31 yet, but we recently did have a beautiful example of a 2+2 280. We've even had a couple of Roadster's show up.

Admission is $5 per car, or per person. Free Live Music, you can buy Food, Beer and Mixed Drinks as well. There's even Drag Racing gonig on in the background.

Hope to see you there.

Enrique

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Mike , welcome . Sounds like you hit the mother load. Like Carl said take this one step at a time. I know you are anxious to hear the engine run , but try and rain in the excitement. The same with jumping in and changing the hood or looks of the car. Get her on the road , make her safe first , then enjoy what you have . Then get involved in how you want the car to be. Believe me you will be glad you did. I live in the Cedar Mill area of Ptln , and I hope to meet you at the PIR show . I wont be able to make this next one , but Scanlon hits them all. All the best , Gary 240 driver

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