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BRE Spoilers and Spooks are back

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Nissan had their own stylists, designers and engineers at the time we are talking about. They even had their own wind tunnel. They were quite capable of designing that rear spoiler themselves, and I believe that they did.

Hi Alan:

I don't recall "Nissan" having a wind tunnel in 1967,68 or 69. At least it was broadly reported that they used models in a fluid dynamics simulation - and later used a wind tunnel at one of the Universities in Japan. Yes/No?

FWIW,

Carl B.

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Hi Alan:

I don't recall "Nissan" having a wind tunnel in 1967,68 or 69. At least it was broadly reported that they used models in a fluid dynamics simulation - and later used a wind tunnel at one of the Universities in Japan. Yes/No?

FWIW,

Carl B.

Hi Carl,

Not sure if you ever saw this "Datsun Styling" press release from April 1969 that I posted last year http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/showthread.php?t=35384. In the attached picture it shows "wind tunnel research" in the #2 photo. I'm not sure if this was a Nissan owned facility or not, but it seems they did use wind tunnels as part of their design work.

-Mike

post-9102-14150811645473_thumb.jpg

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post-9102-14150811646492_thumb.jpg

Edited by Mike B
typo

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Hi Mike:

Yes - I wasn't questing the fact that Nissan made use of a wind tunnel - only the fact that they had their own at that time. All the reports I've seen said that they used a University wind tunnel because they didn't have their own at that time.

FWIW,

Carl B.

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Neither Nissan nor BRE designed that rear spoiler - instead it looks like they both adapted almost directly - the rear spoiler designed, developed and styled by GM/Chevy for the 1967 Camaro.

Now Carl, you know what I'm talking about here. I'm not talking about the theory and concept of rear spoilers in general ( of course not ), I'm talking about the size, shape and fitment of that particular rear spoiler, and I'm quite sure you know that.

I look forward to seeing you apply the same kind of warped semantics to the rest of the car. When you meet up with Yoshihiko Matsuo next week, you'll be telling him that his title of 'Chief Designer' on the 'Maru Z' project was false, as nothing on the car had been 'designed' first by Nissan.

Here's some advice: Don't. It's going to sound a little silly..... :rolleyes:

Front end "lift" reducing chin spoilers and rear spoilers for added downforce were all used on mass production models here in the U.S. years ahead of the Z.

I see we are back "here in the U.S." again, and the rest of the automotive world is playing catch-up. After all, your President claims that the USA is "...the nation that invented the automobile..."

So whilst we have your attention, perhaps you'd like to comment on the claims made in this thread that both Pete Brock and Carroll Shelby had design and/or engineering input on the S30-series Z before launch?

If I popped up and claimed that Mike Costin and Colin Chapman had contributed to the design process, I'm sure I'd be inundated with requests to both prove and quantify it. Shelby ( LOL ) and Brock perhaps sound a little bit more likely as candidates to you, I guess? After all, those 'Japs' just copy everything, don't they? Especially when they are designing an "American Car, Made In Japan".......

Or is it just a matter of semantics....?

Alan T.

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Hi Alan:

I don't recall "Nissan" having a wind tunnel in 1967,68 or 69. At least it was broadly reported that they used models in a fluid dynamics simulation - and later used a wind tunnel at one of the Universities in Japan. Yes/No?

Wrong, Carl.

Nissan did have their own full-size wind tunnel at their Chuo Kenkyujo facility.

They also contributed to the building and running costs of the university wind tunnel you mention, as this kind of philanthropy would help to produce graduates who were skilled in the use of such facilities before joining the Nissan workforce.

It's all written up in Nissan's 1964-1973 ten-year report book, including the financial reports.

Alan T.

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Now Carl, you know what I'm talking about here. I'm not talking about the theory and concept of rear spoilers in general ( of course not ), I'm talking about the size, shape and fitment of that particular rear spoiler, and I'm quite sure you know that.

Hi Alan:

Yes, I know what you are talking about. I thought it would be productive to look at where it originally came from, rather than argue about who used it first on the Z.

There seemed to be a question of "who" designed it. It has always been broadly reported that Nissan "used" MacPherson and Chapman Struts, the A/T used was a Ford design produced by JATCO, S.U. Carb's etc etc - No one seems to argue with that - - I don't see the rear spoiler as being any different.

Indeed most of the automotive magazine articles about the 240Z in 1970, all mentioned the fact that there really wasn't a lot of new technology created, but it was the combination of technologies selected to work well together, and the packaging of them, that made the Z Car such a brilliant design.

No reason we shouldn't recognize the rear spoiler as well for what it is and where it came from. Indeed the automotive reporter from the L.A. Times made the first comment about the Z having a Camaro rear spoiler at the Tokyo Motor Show back in Oct. of 69. Nothing really new there...

I look forward to seeing you apply the same kind of warped semantics to the rest of the car. When you meet up with Yoshihiko Matsuo next week, you'll be telling him that his title of 'Chief Designer' on the 'Maru Z' project was false, as nothing on the car had been 'designed' first by Nissan.

Here's some advice: Don't. It's going to sound a little silly..... :rolleyes:

I have to say I was very pleased that Mr. Matsuo accepted my invitation to join me and all the Z Car Enthusiasts at the 40th Anniversary Celebration Of The Z Car in Nashville. Several of the Directors and Supporters of the DHM will be there as well. The ZCCA Officers working with Nissan have planed a really great event. It is especially nice that many people in the Eastern US will now also have the opportunity to meet him personally.

Of course Mr. Matsuo will also be visiting the Datsun Heritage Museum in California the following week. We have some exciting plans there are well.

As to original design, no question that the styling of that beautiful body and many of the detail features were created by Mr. Matsuo and his team. In that regard, I'm sure that lots of people there will have many questions they would like to ask him directly and I wanted to assure that they would have the opportunity to do so.

Mr. Matsuo's visit this time will also be covered by several automotive magazines and news press people. My hope is that perhaps finally - they will learn for themselves "who" did design the Z - and we won't see the myth repeated so often in the future.

So whilst we have your attention, perhaps you'd like to comment on the claims made in this thread that both Pete Brock and Carroll Shelby had design and/or engineering input on the S30-series Z before launch?

I believe that my original Post about the origins of that rear spoiler was the best information I could add to the discussion.

FWIW,

Carl B.

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If you read the ad:

This BRE Datsun 240Z Rear Spoiler (highlighted in yellow above) is similar to the one Datsun offered for the Zs at the time but is not identical. The rear spoiler BRE ran on their 1970-71 Championship 240Z racers was slightly higher so as to be more effective at the higher speeds the BRE Zs would run and be balanced with the affects of the front BRE air dam. It'll fit 1970-1973 240Zs.

It states BRE modified a Datsun design for racing purposes. What is the big problem folks?

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Hi Guys, not that I want to get involved in this, however, my understanding is that the BRE 46 ran the Nissan (432) rear spoiler. Early and late photos of the BRE 46 car support this theory as it is a ribbed spoiler, there is no way to confirm or deny that their could be a slight height difference in the BRE product vs. the Nissan product.

My car has the Nissan (432) unit, and so does Gerry Mason's original #3 BRE 240Z.

I am sure that the Brock's in this case are not certain of the exact situation here. They remember it their way. Please keep in mind are talking about events that happened 40+ years ago, and quite frankly it is easy to mix this information up to some degree. I will be seeing Gayle and Peter in a couple of weeks and will talk to them about it. I am sure that they will correct the website as I know that they do their very best to be clear about what is, and is not correct. As we all know they have made a small correction already.

Also keep in mind that Peter ran the race team, and although he was involved in all aspects of the car, I am sure he had one of the team members working directly on this and he had some (but not a lot) of involvement with this.

My recollection is that there is a similar spoiler on the Shelby (Brock) Coupe which pre dates the Camero's rear spoiler. I know that Brock & Shelby had issues at high speed down the Mulsane <sp> Straight at Le Mans and as the story goes they went to a series of aerodynamic engineers and settled on this same type of rear spoiler design that you see on the Z.

As for the original molds. Really there are no "original" molds, you can make X number of parts out of a single mold and then it has to be replaced. In this case I know that these molds have been used and replaced, as needed. Again, copies of the original molds have been made and are used currently. I also know who has these molds and who gets parts from them. I believe Les and the Brocks get them from the same guy.

BRE Spooks are three pieces, the main unit with two fiberglassed covers for brake ducts. Most often the spook is sold without the fiberglass ducting. This unit is a Peter Brock design, and the idea comes from the front spoiler he designed made for the Roadster.

I think it is important to clarify the historical significance of these items, but I do think that we as a group can be a little more polite, spirited debate is fine, but this thread reads like a championship prize fight. Let's ratchet this back a little and discuss this like gentlemen.

I hope that this helps to clarify this. If anyone has a problem with what I have stated above please feel free to PM me and we can discuss this off line.

thanks,

Edited by ron carter

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If you read the ad:

This BRE Datsun 240Z Rear Spoiler (highlighted in yellow above) is similar to the one Datsun offered for the Zs at the time but is not identical. The rear spoiler BRE ran on their 1970-71 Championship 240Z racers was slightly higher so as to be more effective at the higher speeds the BRE Zs would run and be balanced with the affects of the front BRE air dam. It'll fit 1970-1973 240Zs.

It states BRE modified a Datsun design for racing purposes. What is the big problem folks?

The perhaps not-so "big problem" was what was originally written on the BRE website. See a quote in post #2 of this thread.

See also posts #20 & 21. BRE changed the text on the rear spoiler blurb.

However, they might need to change it again. According to Carl, it might be more accurate if they change the text to "..this rear spoiler was originally designed for the Chevrolet Camaro...." :rolleyes: :classic:

Ron,

I think you're right. Although that ribbed rear spoiler was originally designated for the PS30-SB 'Fairlady Z432-R' ( note the 'R' ), and was initially developed and homologated by Nissan's competitions department at Oppama. It was then adopted as an option for other Z variants before launch.

I think the BRE site is still somewhat confusing, and also wrong about the height issue. If you order a rear spoiler from their website today, do you receive the 'ribbed' ( 432-R ) type, or the later, taller, non-ribbed type - as per the old Interpart catalog? They appear to illustrate the 'ribbed' version......

Alan T.

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Hi Alan,

Yes, the 432-R rear spoiler to be exact...

Also, based on the rules for SCCA C Production rules I think the rear spoiler would have to be an item that was available for the 240Z and was homolgated from the Japanese market place, just like the 5spd transmission that was used by BRE from the european and Japanese marketplace.

This was a production based class so adding aerodynamic enhancements that were not a option with or OEM for the car would be against the rules. I am sure that there are FIA papers for the 432-R spoiler to be used in competition. Just like there is FIA papers for the Roadster competition 5 Speed that was used in the BRE cars.

The whole story about the front spook was based on providing brake ducting for the Roadster, then the Z (that just happened to help the aerodynamics of the car back then).

I got my fiberglass parts for my Z from the same guy that is manufacturing parts for the Brocks, and it is the 432-R ribbed spoiler and not the later, non ribbed spoiler.

I have compared it to a right hand drive 240Z with an original 432-R spoiler and it is exactly the same.

Alan, I will speak to the Brocks and get this sorted out.

Ron

Edited by ron carter

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I spoke to Gayle via email, explained the concern and the site has been modified to the following:

"You've been asking for them and now they're available... our original BRE Datsun body parts as run on our Championship racers AND amazingly, made by the same company that made them for us originally in the '70s!

The rear spoiler featured on this BRE 240Z (highlighted in yellow above) is a direct copy of the rear spoiler BRE ran on their 1970-71 Championship 240Z racers and is designed to balance the affects of the front BRE air dam. It'll fit 1970-1973 240Zs.

Of course we had to also provide you the latest in technology. In addition to the original fiberglass body parts, we now offer them in carbon fiber. Be cool with either. Just select which you prefer when ordering. Carbon Fiber of course costs more and the drop down window will give you the addt'l charge for Carbon."

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No Alan,

They can't afford me :)

We help our friends out. The Brock's have been very good to me, I am more than happy to return the favor. It's a small world out there.

Ron

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Nissan did have their own full-size wind tunnel at their Chuo Kenkyujo facility.

Alan, is this a photo of a protype Fairlady Z at the Nissan Chuo Kenkyujo wind tunnel? I assume it is a protype since there doesn't appear to be any badges on the hood or fenders.

-Mike

post-9102-14150811730718_thumb.jpg

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gnosez,

I'm fairly sure that one was a purely American design. Certainly not a 'factory' / Sports Option part in Japan as far as I'm aware.

By late 1972, the Nissan works race cars in Japan were using the big three-piece rear spoilers, like this:

attachment.php?attachmentid=37199&stc=1&thumb=1&d=1279496856

Not that it matters, but this is the same spoiler that currently resides on my 240z for the past 30+ years. It's huge....

Even though it seems tensions rises during these types of discussions, I still find the discussions to very interesting and thought provoking. My hat's off to all.... :)

**EDIT** Photo addition....

Edited by Z Speed

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The Large three piece spoiler you have Z speed was based around the Trans AM/IMSA cars post 1973, and is an american part as far as I know. Although I am sure that the larger spoiler at that time might have been used and designed across several markets for racing.

I agree spirited debate is interesting, provocative and a great learning experience. I just don't care for members calling each other out on a public forum. I feel that we are gentlemen (and ladies), and we could be a little kinder to each other and still get our point across. Maybe I am just too picky...

Ron

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Thanks Ron. I agree with your, "kinder" statement. I too try my best to adhere to that belief....

As for the spoiler, that statement is the best description I've heard. This car was setup (put together) in the early "70's) for local racing during that period. Besides the removal of the triple Mikuni's, (boy I wished I still had those) the car hasn't been altered from the original race form since that period. Thanks for the information. I always wondered about the spoiler on my car. I don't see many Z's running this particular unit....

Thanks for the input. Always appriciated....

**EDIT** The wheels where changed out as well.... :)

Edited by Z Speed

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I have seen photos from the 1972/1973 time frame with the early fender flairs and this wing. Looks like it was also available in 72 in Japan, and like I said, it could have been used across several markets including the Japanese market.

These types of parts are designed and fabricated to fit certain rules based on a racing class, or classification. Does your car have fender flares too? If so it could be a late C production car. Do you have any racing history that goes along with this car?

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My step father was a 747 pilot for Northwest Airlines and flew to and from Japan regularly during the 70's all the way up to the Delta merge. He was the original owner. He along with one of the managers of, what is now defunct; Downtown Datsun in Seattle built the car. He personally bought and imported many parts directly from Japan as he could just carry, what he bought, onto the plane during his trips....

I know the mirrors, spook, spoiler, fiberglass light buckets, and last but not least the light cover and chrome rings were brought over from Japan. From what he told me (he's passed on now) he also added Volvo needles to the SU's once he swapped them back in and sold the Mikuni's. I have never verified this. If they are they are still in there. The car has been sitting for many many years. When I got the car in the early / mid 80’s (can’t remember when it was passed on to me) I only drove it a few years then parked it. It’s been sitting in my garage ever since. I really want to do a full restore someday. I’ll need tons of help when I do.... :)

Off the top of my head, the only thing I've replaced on this car is tires, exhaust, mechanical oil pump, and little odds and ends. I know the motor was balanced and the motor mounts were redone after the stock ones broke pushing the fan into the radiator during a race. He use to race it a lot in the 1970-80’s at what was SIR at the time and now is called Pacific Raceways. I wish I could remember what class he raced in, but I do know it is no longer running for many years now. This was not a major competition car, but it has seen a whole lot of track time. ;) It has 98k org. miles....

The car does not have nor did it ever have any fender flares...

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I ordered one of the rear spoilers and received it yesterday. I was wondering if others here have ordered this spoiler from BRE and if what they received was of the same finish as the one I received. I did speak with an individual at BRE and was told all the ones in stock look the same as the one I received. I have to admit I was a bit surprised at the lack of finish as I was expecting a ready to bolt on spoiler.

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Today I thought I'd go ahead and do all the measuring/marking for installing the BRE rear spoiler. What I discovered is that the outer studs are not the same distance apart as the originals, making it impossible to install. The original studs, according to installation instructions I found on line, were 40 3/4" apart. The current spoiler has the studs at 40 5/16". I am disappointed that a BRE product doesn't meet the standards that the early year products did. I have great respect for BRE and this won't change my support for them.

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Edited by Galaxybj

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I can't see any excuse for the damaged finish along the entire top edge of the spoiler. That is not incidental damage, it has been ground or filed off. I suspect there is a problem with the mold and the edge is not coming out clean and this is someone's very poor "fix". This should be completely finished in gelcoat and ready for installation or paint to color of your choice. As to the mounting studs, one might presume no prior installation holes in the vehicle and therefore new holes would be drilled to the current spec. If BRE assured you that the spec was the same as original, then you have an issue to take back to them - along with the finish item.

As an aside, my dealer had already installed the 1st gen BRE "Spook" and spoiler when I bought my car - and they are still with it. The BRE site shows the current "Spook" as the original but it is really the 2nd gen. design for 1971 and after. Here are a couple of pics of the 1st gen. "Spook", used only for the 1970 competition season.

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