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AldaMax

The tale of the rusty Z

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    Hi everyone,

    I've been looking for a Z in all California for several weeks already and finally bought one. It's not perfect but it was Christmas and I got seduced by that light blue metallic color.

    Biggest problem, and the biggest of all Zs in general, RUST!

    I've been talking to my local Z garage and read a ton of documentaion and I'm well aware of the effect of rust on Zs. The owner of the garage and a a couple threads on that forum were listing values of rust-free Zs sometimes well below the bar of 5000$ but after looking methodically in all the US for such cars I couldn't find any even close to that price without a major problem somewhere.

    Coming from a wet/salty road/close to ocean area in France, I'm used to see rust on cars and I guess it doesn't bother me like most Z owners in the Sun Belt. That being said, I do want to treat that car the best I can for my limited budget and I seek advices.

    I got the car for 4750$, I dropped the price of a couple thousands due to the rusty parts (initial price was way too much). The body and inside is perfect, nothing to complain aboute. I drove the car for a couple miles and it's running strong.

    The pictures here show the worse of what I could find on the car, the front car picture is just to show that the Z is still a gorgeous lady and not a total piece of rust.

    I believe that the rust is mostly on surface on most (or all) part so I won't have to get parts removed/replaced, but it's all over on the underside of the car. The paint of the car isn't infected except for the front underside (see picture) + tiny dents which created rust on that line of metal at the very edge under the car (it might have a name in english but I don't know it...

    I'm thinking of getting a car jack and and stands and sandpaper everything underneath before treating it with the most appropriate set of anti rust chemicals.

    I'm not a car mechanics but I'm willing to learn. Every advices or comments is much appreciated.. and I'm of course happy to finally join the Z family!

    Thanks!

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    That's a nice car and not too rusty for being as old as it is. You probably should replace all the rubber associated with the suspension and steering components before undercoating. Clean all the electrical connections you can, the engine bay looks untouched so they're most likely corroded. Here's a helpful link, Tech Tips

    What's the color code number by the radiator? Looks like a yellow color. http://www.zhome.com/History/ZColorGallary/

    Edited by siteunseen

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    Grats, Looks nice and clean. The rust in the photo's doesn't look bad at all. What took you "serveral weeks" took me two years, but I finally found one near to rust free.

    The colour looks like 305 Light metalic blue, but the engine bay is the original colour.

    The original colour could be a dirty 904 white. There was a yellow (411) in the 77 year model, but it was a bright yellow. I wonder if they changed the sticker?

    Mine car has a Blue 305 engine bay and red outside.

    Chas

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    Using just sand paper to remove that rust is going to be a hard slog, an easier way would be to use an angle grinder like this

    4-1/2" Electric Angle Grinder and some or all of these,Bristle Disk 4 1/2 in, 50 grit Green, or a good old wire wheel.

    Post some pics of your progress, we love pics.

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    I like to use a wire brush or a brass wheel, then soak it in rust dissolver then use an encapsulater to get any I didn't see. Then prime and paint.

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    Rust... what rust... That looks great compared to what most Zs look like in the midwest. If that is the worst rust you find consider yourself blessed. It looks great to me.

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    Sorry for the late reply, I took a break from the Internet for the Holidays (happy new year to you all btw!)

    I took a picture of the color code. It says 216, which is white.

    I spotted some dark green paint somewhere too... I need to inspect it again. The current color seems to be the light metallic blue.

    I took the car for a 450miles trips in the SoCal desert over the holidays and it didn't fail on me. Baptism by fire!

    The main 'problems' I noticed is a very loose stick shift, and in the past few miles the stick also started to rotate a bit on its axe and vibrate quite a lot. Other than that the car runs pretty great. The RPM needle gauge got stuck for 100miles and started working again.

    If any of you are from Los Angeles, would you recommend Mike's Z shop over Z Experts in Venice ? I live in Venice but feel like Mike's Z is even better and worth the drive (but maybe not?).

    I want to treat that undercarriage rust as well, so maybe Mike's is more able to do that. (the Z Expert in Venice is a tiny garage which might not be able to perform some heavy duty work on the car).

    Any advice appreciated!

    Attached is a picture of the hood and 3 other pictures I took of the car (I know you guys love pictures :) )

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    Thanks

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    Yep, We like photo's. I use the playboy reading;)LOL

    The Color code 216 is called Polar White. That is the original (grubby, after years of service) colour in the engine bay. Looks like they painted it Light Blue Metalic 305.

    There is also a Sky Blue 510 Non Metalic that looks similar, but its hard to tell with photo's.

    It lloks great on the photo's

    Chas

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    Sounds like a keeper to me. Just keep looking for rust you will find it some spot on these cars all the time. Their is a lot of places things can get in and start the rusting process that are hard to clean out or see the rust start. So the best thing is to always look for it and treat it when you find it.

    Have one of the shops walk you through the car and show you how it works and what to watch out for with the car. That time will be well spent and will pay 10 fold (if not more) in the future.

    I hope you drive it I loved my drive in the high deserts of northern Arizona the flat areas leading to the hills. The car just feels like it belongs their, so surprising when you look at what Japan is and how well the car performs it that environment.

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