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Restoration is back on track (with a lot of help)


Mike

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Hey guys,

Well, it looks like my restoration project is back on track. We blew the dust off the car and moved the project to a new home in Salem for the job.

Bryon Nichols, an active Datsun guy and college student, is currently working on my car in the Ztherapy garage. He offered to put the car back together to make a few extra dollars before starting school. Byron is a student in mechanical engineering and, let me tell you, is very meticulous in his work.

The Ztherapy garage is an excellent and fun place for any Datsun enthusiast to know about. Aside from the obvious restoration of SU carburetors (which most Zcar fans know about), they also work on vintage race cars, Datsuns of all flavors (510, Zcar, Roadsters), and have a huge collection of memorabilia. Their shop is full of goodies for any restoration project and I can count at least 4-5 people who love to pitch-in and give a hand whenever possible.

In fact, whenever I show up to check on the progress of the assembly, there are frequently 2-3 other people pitching in and helping out. This is truely an amazing shop with lots of character and giving people.

Anyway, I've uploaded a few pictures of the progress and will continue to post more as the weeks progress. I think Byron wants to get this car done by the time he starts school so we're looking at another month of continued progress.

I'd like to give a special thanks to Bryon, Steve, Bruce, and all the other guys helping out on this project. Without these guys, my project would still be sitting in the garage!

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Hey Mike, that's great news! That is, unless you plan on bringing it to next years West Coast Nationals! Just kidding, I'm really glad to see your car coming together and I'm sure it will be fantastic when completed. Hope things are going well for you. Come down a day early or stay a day late and we'll hit the water out in Catalina.

Please continue to post pictures. I'd really like to see how it's coming along. Hard to tell the actual yellow color. It changes with the light in each picture.

Bob

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Hi guys, here are some additional photo updates. The rear bumper is on, hatch is assembled, and the doors are 99% done. Next we are working on installing the dash. Before that we need to install some vinyl trim around the window frame.

What do you think of the painted rear tail-light panel?

-- Mike

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Well, it's all personal, but I don't care for the color-matched rear panel. Somehow that hust seems wrong to me on a Z, especially with the stock chrome bumper. But it's your car, so if it's good for you, go for it.

But it's sure looking good. I'm really looking forward to getting to the body/paint part on mine. There are lots of yellow Zs in Oregon (Mike's, beandip's, azcarbum's), but none in original 919 yellow, so mine will still be a bit unique. I can't wait.

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Yea, the rear tail-light panel was a bit hard to get used to at first. But, it's growing on me. The reason for the painted panel was due to my last body shop. I believe I gave them a box full of parts and they just painted everything yellow. It's been sitting in a box for a long time and I hadn't really paid attention to it until we put it on the car.

Steve has an extra set of rear panels that we are going to paint black. I will put that up against the car with the chrome trim-ring and compare before it's permanent. The panel is actually quite easy to remove and replace in the future as well.

I am VERY glad I didn't sell her now!! It's going to cost me some more money to finish her off, but, I am excited to see the progress and can't wait to drive her.

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Is it my imagination or is the left side (driver's) tail-light finisher in flat black?

Look at the pic of the bumper, and compare it to the one of the passenger tail light / finisher.

For my 2¢, I think that although it has been painted very nicely, and it has good shine, that it leaves something to be desired. The Z does not have a lot of contrast as far as different colors / textures / surfaces, and changing one of the more visual aspects of it to a monochromatic look....well it kind of leaves the car washed out.

While I was never a big fan of the "matchbox gray" as W. Humble describes it, and I have seen several in Flat Black, personally I prefer the Satin Black look, or even a Metallic Black.

But that's just my opinion.

E

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While I was never a big fan of the "matchbox gray" as W. Humble describes it...
Ha! While I recall seeing that term in Humble's book, and I agree that the description of the color is accurate, as a long-time collector of vintage Lesney die-cast toys the term "Matchbox" brings to my mind things not at all related to Datsuns. LOL
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Looking good Mike, glad to see you went forward with it. With all the yellow cars in the area keeping mine 918 orange. I am not a big fan of the tail light finishers the same as the car but, then it is not my car. I am going to put mine back to the original color. Can not wait to get the windows back in mine.

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I'm really looking forward to getting to the body/paint part on mine. There are lots of yellow Zs in Oregon (Mike's, beandip's, azcarbum's), but none in original 919 yellow, so mine will still be a bit unique. I can't wait.

Great, now my car is demanding to go to Oregon to see all of it's yellow siblings! If this keeps up, we're going to need a yellow car subgroup! Seriously, glad to see the restoration back underway, that car is going to look terrific when it's done! BTW, what color of yellow is that?

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Great, now my car is demanding to go to Oregon to see all of it's yellow siblings! If this keeps up, we're going to need a yellow car subgroup! Seriously, glad to see the restoration back underway, that car is going to look terrific when it's done! BTW, what color of yellow is that?
Doug, your car (and you, presumably) are welcome to come out West to visit any time. Just let me know, I'll have a bottle of homebrew waiting for you.

As for the yellow-ness, I recall Mike calling his "Ferrari Racing Yellow". (Probably ought to kill the ad in the USA Cars For Sale forum, Mike.) Beandip's car is a Mustang GT color, as partially seen in the attached picture. Azcarbum's 280Z is similar to Gary's in color, with graphics. My car's factory yellow looks rather pale in comparison, but VERY '70s.

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Is it my imagination or is the left side (driver's) tail-light finisher in flat black?

Look at the pic of the bumper, and compare it to the one of the passenger tail light / finisher.

E

to me it looks like the taillight gasket just draped over the outside of the lens (awaiting installation).

nice paint, but i vote for the original finish on the panel.

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I'm going to have to see it head-on when its all together, but that pic makes the rear finisher look pretty good. It look clean, and you still have the metal trim to give it a 'touch' of contrast, but as Escanlon says it is just a tad washed out. From how it looks there, I think it will look really nice when its done. Post a pic of the complete rear so we can have a look at it.

Zak

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Bart:

The pic I was referring to:

http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=13830&d=1156272640

If you look you'll note that the black surround above and below the lens is kind of a flat black and way too big to be any of the gaskets back there. Besides, the tail light gasket would have already been installed, as evidenced in this shot:

http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=13832&d=1156272652

E

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It's looking great Mike. I think the finishing panel looks fine, although I too prefer the contrast the darker finished provide. I think a satin black looks the best with bright colors like yellow or red, but the stock gray look pretty good with darker colors. In any event, congrats on getting things back underway.

Is that some rust I see on the inside of the roof, or old adhesive?

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Hi guys, I do like the black rear tail-light panel as well. But, I'm going to stick with the yellow for now. Unless I can get a 2nd set of panels, I won't bother repainting them. This is an easy enough swap in the future.

FYI, I like DougN's yellow car. The black does set it off well. Take a look at his yellow Z.

Enrique, we did have a flat-black panel (from a parts car) just to see the difference between black and yellow in a side-by-side comparison. I didn't care for the flat black. But, a semi-gloss may look ok. I'll get to that point sometime in the future. There are a lot of other things I need to finish and focus my attention.

I recently ordered carpet, vinyl, window-vinyl trim, and a firewall kit from Classic Datsun. Les has some good prices on this stuff.

Today I'll be making another order with Motorsport Auto (major sponsor of our site).

I've decided to go forward with this airdam. It's a nice and clean look for the car. I borrowed one from one of the other cars in the shop and held it up against mine. It looks pretty good. The recessed license plate holder cleans up the front very well. Since we are required to have front plates in Oregon, I need something to clean up that area.

Anyway...... more to come.........

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