Jump to content

Bill McPherson

78 280z Rear ended...need parts

Recommended Posts

Due to recent accident where I was rear ended, I'm looking for a 280z rear valence and passenger side bracket that attaches to valence and frame. Possibly the passenger side rear taillight panel if I can't smooth out the one I have. Right now, I'm only finding 240z valences out there, which could work, if that's my only option. Also any good body shop recommendations in central Maryland (West of Baltimore). Need to straighten out and square off the body panel just under the tail lights that the valence is welded to. From the pictures, you can see how it has been pulled down as you move from the drivers to the passenger side. See attached pictures. Thanks.

IMG_4748c.jpg

IMG_4749c.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think I have what you need but I have found that is a difficult place to put back right. There is a lot of really solid metal right there. My car took a similar shot but less and I have had a hard time making it right. You will want to pull the tank or have the shop do it to have a good shot at getting it back the way it needs to be

Look on "Car-part.com" and find yards with the right year cars. Then call them and tell them what you want. I wouldn't search for the rear valance. I would search for rear quarters. If they have good quarters they most likely will have a good rear pan. Might take some leg work but you should be able to find one

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The rear valance was rusted on mine when I was getting mine ready for paint.  The guy doing the welding said it would be better to just replace it so I was kind of in the situation you are in. I really couldn't find a 77' valance in the time frame I was working in so opted for the readily available one from Banzai motor works.  It came as a stamped piece of metal but it was flat and needed to be shaped into that curve that it has which added more time and effort, not to mention that the bumper bracket holes do not line up the 280 holes.  None of those things were a deal breaker to me since I don't have a rear bumper although they are something to consider and compare too the time and cost of repairing what you've got.  

GLW8961R.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to both for your responses! I did reach out to Bonzai Motorworks yesterday afternoon and he said he did not have these parts. I do like the car-part.com reference. I didn't know about that site before. Nobody seems to have the 280Z panel at all. gwri8, thanks so much for the info on the bumper bracket locations and the need to curve the piece as well as the picture! Great looking car! I did come across a place that has the option to give me one identical to your piece in the picture or to get one that is the same overall shaped piece but is a totally blank piece (nothing stamped into it). With the blank piece, I'd have to cut out for the exhaust pipe. With either piece, I'd have to close up the bumper shock holes that are partially cut into the quarter panels on either side. I imagine it would look similar to the attached image when completed with the blank piece. gwri8, could you tell me where you got those tail light panels? Love that look! Ultimately, I won't be going with the bumper either, so no big deal going with the 240 style valence. I'd just like to protect the gas tank more. Maybe with a steel plate between the tank and valence and/or a tank that wouldn't rupture if crunched in an accident but still be able to mount in the same location. But that's another topic, I guess.

4298c.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is very little room between the rear valance and the tank. It would be difficult to make anything substantial enough for reinforcement to the rear and still be able to get the tank in and out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My rear panels are nothing special.  It's just a vinyl wrap over stock panels. It was hard to get right with all the complex curves on those but was realativly inexpensive .  Now they are about 3 yrs old and I should probably re-do them. Vinyl is temporary and doesn't last so I try to do something else next time. The tail light trim pieces are painted bright silver with a clear coat.

I agree with everything Patcon suggested.  If you want more protection back there, that's what that the original bumper (often referred to as the park bench) was for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Patcon said:

There is very little room between the rear valance and the tank. It would be difficult to make anything substantial enough for reinforcement to the rear and still be able to get the tank in and out.

 I agree but what if the protective piece was attached to the tank so it would come out with the tank? I'm imaging, as I sit by the wood stove, a piece of 1/4" steel plate at the rear of the tank welded to a 1/4" flat bar frame that would surround the tank. The tank would mount to the fabricated frame and the flat bar frame would attach to the chassis. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AlbatrossCafe: Maybe, maybe not. They were rusted out pretty bad. Plus, I like that booty without the park bench 🙂 . Mark/Patcon, I was thinking of slightly relocating the current brackets that are currently bolted to the original valence and are attached to the frame on either side (or making new ones) and bolting a piece of thick flat steel just behind the valence, in front of the gas tank straps. That way, I could unbolt them if I needed to get to the tank in the future.

image.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bill, those valence brackets that you circled are welded on as well as bolted on, on my 77/280. I removed all the bolts but I think there is a weld somewhere on the top that I can't get to. Just thought I would give you a heads up, I hit it a few times with a BFH and couldn't budge them.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have concerns about reinforcement around the fuel tank. I just see a piece of steel failing to yield and breaking instead, to end up punching the fuel tank it's meant to protect. I would think reinforcement would have to be very well thought out. I think a more interesting idea would be coming up with a puncture resistant liner like fuel cells have.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

grannyknot, thanks for the heads up on the brackets. Maybe I can work around them or figure how to get them out somehow. Patcon, I think we will look into a fuel cell that can go roughly in the same location as the original tank. Starting from ground zero on that. The other person's insurance came through today and cut us a check to fix the car. Their body shop didn't feel comfortable working on the car so I may do a combination of some work ourselves (gas tank) as well as searching out a reputable body shop to do the body work and painting. We will be ordering a 240Z panel from the Z Store as it seems to be a good quality piece (16 guage steel). Like that look (like gwri8's car) vs the smooth look with this car! Thanks for all your help!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/12/2018 at 11:43 AM, Bill McPherson said:

AlbatrossCafe: Maybe, maybe not. They were rusted out pretty bad. Plus, I like that booty without the park bench 🙂 . Mark/Patcon, I was thinking of slightly relocating the current brackets that are currently bolted to the original valence and are attached to the frame on either side (or making new ones) and bolting a piece of thick flat steel just behind the valence, in front of the gas tank straps. That way, I could unbolt them if I needed to get to the tank in the future.

 

I did the same thing on my 76, only I did install some 240z bumpers.  I wanted to keep the big bumpers for protection (the 240z bumpers do nothing...), but I've noticed that even with the larger bumpers, the bumpers sit too low and most modern cars on the road would just hit your tail light panel regardless.   It would be interesting to see how much the rear bumper really does, or if it is too low.  

I know that if a large truck (F150 or something) rear ended a Z, no bumper is doing anything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder how a 240 bumper would do against a new car that has no bumper. A lot of cars have large plastic panels attached with plastic clips. The crumple zones might mitigate the damage to the other car. Hopefully not a Z.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Mark Maras said:

I wonder how a 240 bumper would do against a new car that has no bumper. A lot of cars have large plastic panels attached with plastic clips. The crumple zones might mitigate the damage to the other car. Hopefully not a Z.

Are they really making them without bumpers now?  I know for a long time, the actual "bumper" was hidden behind the plastic/urethane cover.  At least it was on most of the cars I've worked on.

Either way, the likelihood of a Z surviving a mid speed rear end is pretty low...unless it did have the park bench bumpers, and the car behind you's bumper lined up perfectly with the Z's.  (One good thing I've noticed around here is that with the killer potholes, people are forced to not tailgate, so they can see the potholes coming)

Look at what happened to this nice blue Z that was just restored, then rear ended.... ouch...

 

z accident.jpg

Edited by ramsesosirus
new thought

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pretty much all modern cars have aluminum or steel bars under the bumper cover. One of the problems with the z is not the bumpers. It's where the bumpers mount. If the bumpers were super strong, the force would just be transferred to the chassis and hatch floor. It would do alot more damage if it were transferred further into the car. Even the blue car above are starting to be viable for rebuilding due to the price of these cars.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Patcon said:

Pretty much all modern cars have aluminum or steel bars under the bumper cover. One of the problems with the z is not the bumpers. It's where the bumpers mount. If the bumpers were super strong, the force would just be transferred to the chassis and hatch floor. It would do alot more damage if it were transferred further into the car. Even the blue car above are starting to be viable for rebuilding due to the price of these cars.

 

39 minutes ago, siteunseen said:

yes!  My 2000 Camry has a very similar aluminium bumper like this Cruz under the bumper cover.

 

That is what I thought, they're just "hidden" beneath the cover.

That blue Z actually was fixed, according to the guy who put up the youtube video.  But it looks like even the quarters got bent.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see lots of cars like this on the salvage auction. I bought a 330Ci convertible one time that had some slight bends in the quarters. When they put it on the rack and pulled it back they disappeared. Most of those wrinkles on the blue Z would smooth out when pulled back. One of the problems with Z's is figuring out where to pull them from with out tearing seams apart. The blue z's quarters would still need some dolly work but it is fascinating to watch them disappear when they're on the rack.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Patcon said:

I see lots of cars like this on the salvage auction. I bought a 330Ci convertible one time that had some slight bends in the quarters. 

That's a heck of a nice car to get a deal on.  I've never done much body work, but it's amazing what can be fixed by someone with the tools and knowledge.  I suppose you could have quite a side business just buying salvage vehicles, fixing them, and reselling them

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, ramsesosirus said:

That's a heck of a nice car to get a deal on.  I've never done much body work, but it's amazing what can be fixed by someone with the tools and knowledge.  I suppose you could have quite a side business just buying salvage vehicles, fixing them, and reselling them

You can if you know what to buy and what kind of repairs are easiest to make. I know several people in my area that make a living rebuilding cars

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/12/2018 at 11:43 AM, Bill McPherson said:

AlbatrossCafe: Maybe, maybe not. They were rusted out pretty bad. Plus, I like that booty without the park bench 🙂 . Mark/Patcon, I was thinking of slightly relocating the current brackets that are currently bolted to the original valence and are attached to the frame on either side (or making new ones) and bolting a piece of thick flat steel just behind the valence, in front of the gas tank straps. That way, I could unbolt them if I needed to get to the tank in the future.

image.png

I think even the stock 280z bumpers are too low, most modern cars would go right over the bumper and into your tail panel.. and if it's any kind of truck, van, or SUV.... you can imagine how well those bumpers line up

Edited by ramsesosirus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.