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Project Boondoggle (or, so I went and bought a Z!)

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    8 hours ago, ryanotown22 said:

    What is your setup for spraying? Compressor size/gun?

    21 gallon and 10 gallon Harbor Freight compressors joined together with a T-fitting and check valves.

    I used two guns: Devilbiss Finishline FLG-4, for the sealer and color. I didn't want to spend big money on a gun, and at $200, it seemed to be one of the better values out there. The other gun was from the two-piece kit from HF (https://www.harborfreight.com/2-pc-professional-automotive-hvlp-air-spray-gun-kit-61472.html) to shoot high fill. That's why I bought it, but the small detail gun turned out to be surprisingly useful. I've used it a bunch of times on small parts.

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    Going back in time a little bit for a recap of some of the things that happened in December and January trying to get the car back on the road.


    The only new thing on the interior (so far) was re-doing the trim around the sides of the roof. I remember going home on a Friday afternoon and thinking "this shouldn't take more than an hour or so." Then I screwed up the windshield piece three times. I didn't get anything else done that weekend. The first time my brain short circuited and I stuck the piece on backwards. The second time, I cut it too small. The third time had too many wrinkles. The fourth time was good enough. The trim along the doors, at least, went on easier. I still need to do something about the sun visors.


    Rubber and Seals

    When Black Dragon closed down their Z store a few years ago, I bought everything I thought I might need one day. It's been sitting in a box in my office since then, and finally that decision paid off. Good thing, too, because almost every part that wasn't missing outright was long perished. Off the top of my head: there's new seals for

    • quarter windows (body seal and door)
    • hatch glass
    • outer hatch weatherstrip
    • upper door trim
    • window glass
    • door to fender
    • door to sill
    • windshield
    • fender (these weren't even on my car before, and I ended up installing them wrong and having to cut them. Oops.)
    • hood to cowl
    • headlights

    Side Mirrors

    One of my Christmas presents: a new set of side mirrors from Z Car Depot. Drilling holes in my newly painted doors that I spent hours fixing...that's nerve-wracking. Measure five times, then once more. The mirrors come with sheet metal screws. That doesn't seem particularly robust, and I think contributed to my driver side door getting torn up over the years, so I thought nuts and bolts would be better. Since I could reach through the back, I again thought "this shouldn't take more than an hour or so." I'm a slow learner. Being able to reach an area and threading on nuts and washers are totally different things. If I knew exactly how long it took to get those mirrors mounted, I would be embarrassed to share it. Because they have a long base, they don't fit quite as tight against the door as I'd like, but at least they look good, even if the passenger side mirror (being flat) is basically useless.


    Windshield Wipers and cowl

    The wiper linkage was a dirty mess and tough to move. Everything was taken apart, cleaned thoroughly, and re-greased. I cut some new washers from leftover felt that I've been holding on to for about a decade (I knew I might need it some time!). While I was at it, I brushed some black Rustoleum on the cowl and the wiper motor bag.


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    Continued from above...

    Cleaning things and polishing the shiny bits

    All the nuts, bolts, and other miscellaneous hardware pieces were cleaned up as much as I reasonably could with a red scuff pad, wire wheel, or buffing bad. One day, when I run out of projects, I think I'll try re-plating some of the hardware. Meguiar's 105 did a great job buffing up the stainless trim pieces. My old Black Dragon order also included a new set of outer door window trims. Can't say I'm super happy with them: the tips were bent in transit, the protective film was cut badly and super glued on, and to top it off, don't seem to fit very well.


    Power Locks

    The power lock kit has a soft zinc block that connects the actuator rod to the door rod via set screws. It would always fall off. Never more. Please don't judge my welds.



    The marker lights were all filthy, but mostly just needed a good cleaning Three out of four are passable, but the front lens on one is a mess. Alt least it's only $30 for a pair of replacement lights. Headlights were cleaned up too. The turn signals needed more attention. The reflectors were rusted, the housings were dirty, and the paint on the surrounds was coming off. I still had material left from the paint job, so everything was cleaned, sprayed with adhesion promoter, epoxy, then rattle can white on the housing, and metallic gray on the surrounds. White is still plenty bright, so rather than trying to repair the reflectors, I left them out entirely.



    The only badges I've left on the car are on the vents. Mine were pretty rough. Replacements aren't terribly expensive, but I'll salvage what I can. Removed as much of the old paint as I could, then sprayed with some Rustoleum, and scraped off everything that should be shiny. This'll do; I'll save the hundred bucks for something else.



    Hood and front end issues deserve their own post, but I think there's a football game about to start.

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    I'm not dead, just been too busy with other things to get much else done on the car, especially since I can drive it again.

    But, at least my new plates came...a775417761a286ecfc357ae8aa389693.jpg

    Sent from my SM-G950U1 using Tapatalk

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    Well I see it's been <checks thread> over a year! since posting anything (mods, you can move this to Build Threads), but life has been busy. I finally took the time to restore the computer with most of my photos on it and came across some of the small projects I photographed inconsistently --and poorly!-- so here are some of the things that happened:

    Fixed my grill. I'm not sure what it had ever done to anyone, but that person apparently got their revenge. I found on in good shape for sale for ~$100, but took the far less sensible approach and set to fixing mine. Drilled out all the rivets, sanded off the old paint and rust, and beat them into shape as best as I could. Finished with leftover epoxy primer, some filler, and painted with Dupilcolor wheel paint. Put back in without even thinking about the after picture. Also not pictured: I sanded off the old baby blue paint and hit the whole area around the radiator support with black Rustoleum, which will stay until I paint the engine bay.


    Then I cleaned, repaired and remounted the horns. No horn pad yet, but at least they work.


    Ordered and installed 240 bumpers! These came from Vietnam. There were some delays in shipping, but finally arrived after about 6 weeks and a number of emails. Some people have reported fitment issues -- especially with the rear bumper -- but mine fit fine. The mounting tabs needed a little bending to get into position, but that wasn't a surprise. Biggest complaint might be that the supplied hardware was a bit disappointing (I picked up some nuts and bolts at the hardware store), and the mounting tabs for the side pieces on the rear had comically oversized captive nuts (M10, maybe) that required drilling bigger holes into the body than I would have liked. Hardly a deal breaker.


    I didn't buy brackets, figuring I could just make my own. Front seemed easier, so tacked that first. Set the bumper in place with things in the garage (an aside: nothing I've done on the car has made me more nervous than moving the bumpers around, as I was convinced that I would drop them and ruin the bumper, the paint, or probably both. Disaster was somehow avoided, though not without a couple close calls.) then made a cardboard template and copied that to some thin steel. When I had what I thought was the right shape, I copied it to 1/8" steel; the thinnest available at the hardware store. The brackets might outlive the car. I whiffed badly on the positioning the first time and had to fix both brackets, but I got to use the welder, so it worked out. They came out nice, and the fit is excellent.


    Same idea on the rear: cardboard first, then a ton of fussing to get all the gaps right. I'm sure they were cut and re-welded 5 times or more. I still had a few ounces of paint left from the car, which I used for the brackets and the bolts. One regret: I didn't realize the holes for the bumper bolts on the rear quarters are different between the 280 and 240. I needed to drill new ones and would have closed up the old ones when I did the body work. Same goes for the cutout in the rear valence and a couple of the mounting holes in the back. The bolts are color matched, but would prefer to not have them at all. Ah well. The bumper looks good. Those rear lights could use some help.


    I got a ride home and a new fuel pump back in January.


    And replaced the blower motor with a Kia unit because the old one was squeaking and rattling. What a great upgrade!


    Now I'm in a bit of a holding pattern. Putting audio into the car doesn't seem like a good use of funds, especially since I've switched to full time remote work and barely drive anymore, so I'm mostly watching Craigslist for L28 engines. 

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