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Rebuilding my 71'


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Thought I would post some pics of what I've been working on the last few days. Took a week off work to get some real progress on my 71' 240Z that's in need of a new front end. So after 6 years of sitting in my garage, she's finally getting that work done she so dearly deserves. Careful the following pics are not for the faint of heart, and for those wondering I have no idea what I'm doing ;-)

Day one:


Finished the jigs to get the new front end somewhat close hopefully ;-)



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Day three was prepping the new front clip and getting the battery tray area coated in POR-15. Also had to make a repair on the firewall where the metal was paper thin. No way I was gonna be able to weld anything to that crap. The only pics I took today were test fitting the front clip to my car. Tomorrow will be the real deal!


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I'm happy to see the progress, but its a lot of work. The poor thing had been in a pretty bad accident that was very poorly repaired. It needed an entire new RH frame rail and the front corner was almost an inch low. I'm confident I can get it back much closer than that when I'm done. Stay tuned!

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So today was some major progress! My car is whole again and relatively straight! Got the new RH front clip installed after 1/2 a day measuring, pushing, BFHing and lots of straps. Was able to get it within 3mm the best that I can measure. Not bad considering all I had to work with was an old tape measure, torpedo level and a plumb bob ^_^ I'm pretty sure that's well within my margin of error in measuring so I'm quite content with myself! Just ended up drawing lines on the concrete and taking the major measurements from there. Worked out pretty well. Did notice some small design changes in the frame and fender well between early 71' and 73' as the front clip was off a 73'. Caused me to make some unplanned adjustments but nothing major. Well here she is in all her glory!

In mid re-constructive surgery with braces still installed but straps removed:


And here she is at the end of the night:


Still a couple patches to make where my welding skills were sub par, and a whole lot of grinding.....

Oh and word to the wise, be careful when welding on the firewall and cowl, there are lots of flammable bits on the other side of that thin metal :stupid:

Edited by er34gtt2000jp
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Holy COW!! Double WOW!! That is some awesome undertaking. Amazing what someone can do that says "I have no idea what I'm doing ;-)" ! ;)

Definitely the right way to do it tho - it'll be nice to have all those issues repaired in one swoop. Thanks for recording and showing it to us!

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Thanks for posting the photos of your project and for giving us "faint of heart" more courage! I'll be starting the rust repair on my '71 Z this summer after some other projects are complete. My friend and I just placed a large order with MSA, which includes new repair panels, floor pans, and frame rails for my car. I wouldn't attempt a project this complex without his experience to guide me, but I still get overwhelmed with the amount of work and my lack of knowledge. :)

I checked out the photos you posted 7 years ago when you made the trip to pick up this Z. It really gives perspective to the amount of damage you recently repaired:


Also, the photo of your Frontier pulling the Z reminded me of the trip to pick up my car:



Robert S.

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What steps are you taking to ensure the car does not... how can I say this... break in half..

Once the frame and apron are welded back to the same spots - with similar spot and tack welds - it'll be as strong as the factory set-up.

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