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outlawswine

Barn find 73 in North Alabama

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Hey guys. I'm new to the Z car world. I inherited a "barn find" '73 240 this week. 
It was my grandfathers and it has been tucked away in his barn for 25 years. I had actually forgotten about the car. Anyway, it is mine now and I'm trying to figure out what to do with it. Should I restore it or just sell it. I don't have a tremendous amount of time to work on it so I'm kind of torn on what to do.

It is completely all original. Interior is in good shape (needs a good cleaning). It only has 35k original miles and only a few spots of surface rust. I gave it a wash and it looks pretty solid. Planning on pulling the plugs tonight to be sure the engine will rotate. 
Anyway, looking forward to chatting with you guys.

 

Here she is all cleaned up.....

20190203_120857.jpg

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Always nice when a 240z drops into your lap,  it looks good.  So you're thinking about restoring it or selling it, if you sell it as is you will get less for it than if you put in some time and money and get it running well, making sure all the lights, signals, horns etc are working properly.  Also, try and find as much original paper work on the car as you can.

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43 minutes ago, outlawswine said:

It was my grandfathers and it has been tucked away in his barn for 25 years.

It only has 35k original miles and only a few spots of surface rust........... Planning on pulling the plugs tonight to be sure the engine will rotate. 

Very nice.  Somewhere around here there is a good writeup of things you should do before even trying to rotate the engine.  Surprising amounts of water can condense in a cold engine and surprising amounts of rust can happen on what should be dry metal.  Maybe somebody knows where that list is and will post a link.

At least, pull the valve cover and check the camshaft for rust, drain the oil to see if there's water at the bottom of the pan, and squirt a bunch of oil in to each cylinder if you plan to try to turn it over.  Plus, drain all of the old fuel out and look for rust.  There's a drain plug on the tank.  Almost no way that the fuel is good, but you might get lucky on rust.  Drain the carbs too, if there's anything in them, they're probably gummed up with dried fuel residue.  Probably need to rebuild them.

Don't get in a hurry and spin the engine too soon.  25 years is a long time.

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Nice! Waiting on more pics.

1 hour ago, outlawswine said:

Should I restore it or just sell it

Depends on what you want. If you "really" like the Z car I would imagine you wouldn't bring up the other part of that statement, (or should I sell it)

 

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Somewhere in the process, you need to address whether the car project or the potential cash suits your lifestyle better. Either could be a life-changer, depending on your situation. 35k on the clock means the value is there to enjoy, one way or the other.

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7 minutes ago, NVZEE said:

Somewhere in the process, you need to address whether the car project or the potential cash suits your lifestyle better. Either could be a life-changer, depending on your situation. 35k on the clock means the value is there to enjoy, one way or the other.

That is something the wife and I will need to address. Time and money right now are at a premium because we are in the middle of opening a new brewery and distillery. All time right now is spent on beer and whiskey. I really want to keep it to work on as a father/son project with my 9 yr old. I was a mechanic as I worked my way through college and he's been wanting a project to work on together. 

Edited by outlawswine

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You aren’t the first Z owner to spend time on beer and whiskey 😉

Good to consider all the options. If you can see a future with the car, the returns could be enjoyed for years. The tough thing with an original car is balancing maintenance and upgrades with preserving its unique value. There’s plenty of wisdom around here to help with the process. Good luck with all your ventures!

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Just looked at the pics, that is in great shape for 25 yrs parked, some soap and water would bring back most of the interior. For me that would be a keeper, as soon as you sell it you're going to kick yourself.  As a mechanic you already know that engine is going to need some TLC to get it going but with 35,000 miles it is just broken in.

If you do decide to keep it there is a small army of guys willing to help with any problems that come up.

Edited by grannyknot
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14 minutes ago, outlawswine said:

That is something the wife and I will need to address. Time and money right now are at a premium because we are in the middle of opening a new brewery and distillery. All time right now is spent on beer and whiskey.

Is it a pub type brewery?  Awesome place to display a Z.  Have it behind some glass, a work-in-progress.  People could come down just to check it out.

Be careful with those tires.  They look ready to blow.

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Just now, Zed Head said:

Is it a pub type brewery?  Awesome place to display a Z.  Have it behind some glass, a work-in-progress.  People could come down just to check it out.

Be careful with those tires.  They look ready to blow.

It is a pub type. Brewery/distillery/winery/restaurant/entertainment venue. All the above. LOL. It started out as a small little venture but now it has turned into an 8500 sq ft nightmare. 

Yeah, the tires are horrible. The left front blew hard when we took it off the rollback. I have the original wheels and hubcaps so I'm going to get some used tires to stick on them just so I can move it around the garage.

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Nice car.  I agree with the rest, get it running then decide.  Restaurants take all your time plus DAMN, 8,500 sq ft!  I'd hate to close that every night. LOL

What do the carbs look like?  Dual Webers I bet.

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10 hours ago, siteunseen said:

What do the carbs look like?  Dual Webers I bet.

Round tops - on an 11/72 build. There are signs of a re-spray. This car might have some stories to tell.

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11 minutes ago, NVZEE said:

Round tops - on an 11/72 build. There are signs of a re-spray. This car might have some stories to tell.

You are 100% correct.  I spoke with my uncle last night and apparently he was the one that purchased the care new and sold it to my grandfather in 1982. The car was resprayed at some point because my granddad didn't think it was "shiny enough".  This is according to my uncle. I'm hoping to get the whole story with this car soon. It looks like the plot thickens.... :)

Edited by outlawswine

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Wow. I'd love to find something like that in my barn! Of course, I'd have to get a barn first, but... Details.

Do you have documentation to support the 35K original miles claim? And do you have any pics of the underside? With all the rust on the stuff on the top side, I'd be most interested in what's going on underneath.

I gotta get a barn...  LOL 

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Interesting that the round tops are the early 4 screw version.

I'm thinking 135,000 on the clock.

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Cool find. Your decision is completely dependent on what you want and what you have time, money and motivation you have for a project. Do you want it to be a daily driver, a weekend cruiser? Old cars take time and space so you need to see if it fits your lifestyle and family situation now. I had wanted a project for the past 20+ years but with family, career, finances it was just not possible. I had too many other competing priorities. I bought a 280z after I retired from 24 yrs in the military and was ready and had time to tackle it. I’ve had lots of cool cars in the past that I wish I kept but you CAN’T keep them all. I had a 75 MGB, a 93 RX-7 and 69 Pontiac Malibu. I liked all of them but let them go for other priorities like reliable cars for work and family. The only one I really wish I kept was the 93 RX-7. You can always find your dream car in the future, you might pay more but I’ve learned it’s cheaper to pay for a car already redone than doing it yourself. If you love this car and have time and desire, then keep it. If you just thinks it’s okay, they you might not have the enduring motivation to see if through it’s resurrection, and you be throwing money at something you don’t love. If you think something else is more your preference then sell it and use the money for your other ventures until the time is right and then get exactly what your want. It’s had to throw $$ and time at something your don’t really love.
I bought a 280z over a 240z mostly because of it higher availability in the marketplace. Other smaller factors were: less rust issues, increased design refinement of S30 to include engine, differential, tranny, accessories and reliability etc. I still love the look of the 240 over the 280 but minus the bumpers and changes in lights and badging it’s almost unnoticeable to the untrained eye.
I’m always on the look out for a 240z. I wanna be like cliff (Siteunseen) and have both. I’m in the process of building a 5 car garage to fit my toys.
If you decide to sell it, there are folks on this forum including me that would be interested. If you keep it, then enjoy it and take the advice of the people on this forum, they’ll lead you in the right direction. Good luck with the Brewery...it’s something I have always thought would be cool to do.


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18 minutes ago, Captain Obvious said:

I gotta get a barn...  LOL 

Same thing I said last night. My wife just looked and me and said: What are you up to now?!

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13 minutes ago, Zup said:

Interesting that the round tops are the early 4 screw version.

I'm thinking 135,000 on the clock.

I don't know much about these cars yet, so I'll have to look up the 4 screw version to see what you are talking about. I'm just now reading up on the different types of carbs these things came with.

It's definitely 35K original. Proving that will be hard though without documentation. I can remember growing up that this thing was only driven once in a blue moon and then it was parked in the barn somewhere around 1992. 

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11 minutes ago, rcb280z said:

Same thing I said last night. My wife just looked and me and said: What are you up to now?!

This is the barn I pulled it out from. I wish it would have been concrete floors instead of dirt but I'm not that lucky.....

barn.jpg

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