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Hi all,

I've just received my 1973 240z! The previous owner towed it out from MO for me along with piles and piles of parts. We went over it together and it's in better shape than I expected (it was a Craigslist transaction over the phone between MO and NJ).

I'm sure that I'll start finding nasty surprises once I start into it, but for now I'm basking in the glory of having a Z in my garage.
 

 

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 1

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 2

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 3

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 5

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 4

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 6

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 7

Delivery Day, May 23, 2015 - 8

Edited by Matthew
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A few things about the car:

The block is not original. Apparently the car was in Alaska for a while and someone used water instead of antifreeze. This opens up possibilities and frees me from slavishly restoring to original condition if I choose to veer off.

The engine is 0.5 mm over. It supposedly runs, but there's a fuel leak somewhere in the back, no battery, and the carbs need syncing.

The rear break cylinder is seeping.

The floors need to be replaced. There's some metal riveted onto them and I see bindi underneath. That is the biggie for now.

The clock works.

Edited by Matthew

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Seriously? He towed it from MO to NJ for you??? Wow!

 

A laminated wiring diagram included with the car is never a good sign.  :)

 

And I like the multiple generations of cycles. Yours and the kids? You two ride together?

 

Good luck with the project. Looks like a great starting point.

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Thanks Captain!

I'm not worried about the electrical. I'll probably be buying all new wiring harnesses for the entire car. This ones going on a rotisserie. Probably.

We have ridden together, actually. It's a great way to work on my low speed maneuvering skills. Up and down the culdesac, over and over. Good times.

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My one kid is eyeing my cycle. "Can I have a cycle when I get older?" I can't legitimately tell him he can't with mine sitting there...

 

I tell him "After you're out of college and living on your own, your mom can't tell you "no" anymore."

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So the current plan is to do a rotisserie job on the body and upgrades not unlike what HaZmatt has done to his 280Z.

The power plant is a big question: Need to do some research to compare a 20-over but otherwise stock motor with SUs vs. an '83 ZX L28ET.

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... a working clock without a battery, that's spooky. 

a broken watch is right twice a day ;}

seriously though - the clock in my '78 keeps absolute perfect time, dead on to my iphone after over a year, and yet the digital clock on my stereo picks up 5 min. a month.

 

congrats matthew - ya got a healthy project :) she looks straight and doesn't appear to have a lot of PO bodywork. when i got my z i was fully intending to do a sbc swap because i know that motor well from my teenage years and always liked the glug-glug-glug sound. i was advised to try out the L6 first, as it is a great motor with lots of character and i have to say i'm glad i did. something about the hard-pulling revvy nature of it coupled with a raspy exhaust note just really seems to fit the car. it grows on you.

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Speaking of previous owner body work, here's a question: have you ever heard of anyone skim coating the roof with bondo in order to strengthen it? This is the one thing (other than riveting metal to the floor) that I feel like I have to undo immediately.

I knew these cars have thin metal, and I knew people did things to them to "fix" it, but this is the first I've heard of this.

He said it was rust free before he did it, and looking from the underside there aren't any dents, but this seems like a recipe for an unintentional convertible to me.

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Edited by Matthew

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I'm on my phone so I can't show the pictures but above the rear quarter windows is a weld that kind of ties the rear to the front. Back when we didn't have the internet a friend of mine made his a targa top. It started folding up. He had to get some iron welded to the bottom to keep it straight. You can see a crack on my '77 where that weld was smoothed over with Bondo.

The roof is like a support bridge.

Edited by siteunseen

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Sure, if you cut on the roof it will cause problems, but does a roof with no dents and no rust need a skim coat of bondo or is that just inviting problems?

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Did the PO tell you there was a layer of body filler or have you started sanding?  It's pretty common, I think, to lay a thin layer down on most large surface areas to fill any small dings and defects.  Because they'll stand out otherwise, after painting.

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Bondo is not gonna add any strength!!!! Fiberglass maybe, but not much. The real strength in the roof comes from the perimeter frame not the roof skin.

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Dug around in my boxes of parts today. Looks like there's a lot of nice stuff and a lot of junk.

The next two weeks will be about getting the garage & basement in order for parts storage, as well as prepping the motorcycle for sale (the Z was the bargain for getting rid of what my wife calls the "death machine." If you've ever ridden in NJ you might see her point).

After that I plan to give all of this stuff a thorough but careful bath.

Then the fun begins!

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Edited by Matthew

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I quit riding when I had little kids. My wife didn't like being left behind and both of us riding seemed foolish for our kids. I don't enjoy it any more. I've been hit too many times and too many close calls. I hope you enjoy the car...

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I quit riding when I had little kids. My wife didn't like being left behind and both of us riding seemed foolish for our kids. I don't enjoy it any more. I've been hit too many times and too many close calls. I hope you enjoy the car...

I quit when when everybody started texting and driving.  I was so nervous watching for what was coming next it wasn't enjoyable anymore.  4 ankle fusions a torn PCL and rotator cuff, cracked ribs punctured a lung and busted my spleen, I look like Frankenstein.  :(

 

Haven't been able to run since 1985 when I first broke my ankle and had it fused together.

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Patcon - Exactly! That and teenagers trying to intimidate me with mom's SUV for sport. They change their tune when you confront them in the parking lot covered in armor, but you have to make it there alive first.

Siteunseen - Dude! Dude.

Edited by Matthew

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We've been having quite a discussion in this thread about engines and rust and stiffening. I'm encouraging everyone to move it over here so people get to follow what I'm thinking and make suggestions.

 

Also, I printed out the FSM, put it in sheet protectors and a 3 ring binder today. So I did actually work on the project, such as it is. You would not believe how long that took, but it was a nice way to skim the contents.

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I downloaded the '77 FSM and EFI bible on a flash drive, took it to a office supply place and had them print it, hole punch then put them into 3 ring binders.  Cost around $50 bucks!  I've used it once to get the transmission and differential fluid amounts.

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Okay, I need some recommendations:

 

Does anyone have a good northern NJ resource for welding in new floors and possibly rails? I want to start looking into places now, because I want to have the place selected by the time I'm ready for the work to happen. I have considered learning how to weld and doing it myself, but this is something I think I want a pro to do.

 

Does anyone have any recommendations for body shops who can media blast, epoxy prime, and paint the car? I've been looking into soda blasting because of the thinness of the metal, so I'm also looking for feedback on what people have had success with in that area.

 

I'm also looking into doing the blasting myself. Looks like Harbor Freight has a unit for < $100.

Edited by Matthew

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