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BayAreaZ650

Picking up a 1977 280z 6 Hours Away. Tips?

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5 hours ago, charliekwin said:

I blasted and painted all my suspension components. A lot of work, and mostly just for looks (here in California, at least), but I'm happy with it and would do it again. I spent a bunch of money on Eastwood's chassis black paint that wasn't worth it. If I had a do-over, I'd just spend $10 on a quart of black Rustoleum.

Thank you for the recommendation. I'll take your advice and just use Rustoleum. What would be the best way to remove prep the parts before painting? Would a orbit sander work best?

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Media blasting is probably the most effective because the parts are all oddly shaped and have lots of surfaces that are hard for tools to reach into. I bodged together a very-makeshift setup out of a Rubbermaid tub. It made a fantastic mess, but did get the job done. Otherwise, a wire wheel and/or scuff pad works too.

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Eibach lowering springs work quite well.  KYB says not to use stock shock absorbers with lowering springs, but I've been using them for a bit now and I haven't put it in a ditch. KYB Gas adjust for the rear are easy to come by.  consider Rota Shokotan rims. 

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Are the parts you want to clean up badly rusted? Have you considered using a rust converter vice the time consuming process of physically removing the rust?

 

“The first ingredient in common rust converters is tannic acid which reacts with iron oxide (rust) and chemically converts it to iron tannate, a dark-colored stable material. ... The overall chemical reaction converts rust into a stable, black protective polymeric coating that serves as an excellent primer for both oil and epoxy based paints.”

If the rust is mostly surface this is a good way to good. Deep or rust thats flaking needs to be removed before using a converter.

I have used rust converters on one of my other cars with success. I’ve also used it on my steel garage door 3 years ago and the rust never came back. Just giving you options.

 

There are lots of converter products on the market. My neighbor used POR-15 on the frame of his entire classic car. Came out awesome!

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

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13 hours ago, charliekwin said:

Media blasting is probably the most effective because the parts are all oddly shaped and have lots of surfaces that are hard for tools to reach into. I bodged together a very-makeshift setup out of a Rubbermaid tub. It made a fantastic mess, but did get the job done. Otherwise, a wire wheel and/or scuff pad works too.

We were thinking alike!  Maybe just good ole common sense? :victorious:

EDIT: You posted in that thread too! 

 

Edited by siteunseen

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I'm looking to get the 280z painted very soon. I've never had an older car before and I'm a bit unsure about the best way to get it painted and dealing with rust. The 280z doesn't seem to have any rust except in a few spots but very minor (1 inch radius rear quarter panel lip where the wheel is and below the driver's side door 2 inch radius). The bottom of the Z and wheel wells still have the original wrinkled undercoating. I'm just worried about getting it painted and missing certain areas where rust can start. 

I don't plan on driving the Z at all in the rain either.

-Are there any hidden spots I should have the body shop look at?

- Is it best to have the body shop mask off certain areas (taillights, headlights, etc) or pull the panels off?

- Do you guys have any advice on what to tell the body shop to look for when painting and repairing the rust?

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Common rust areas:

under the battery, front frame rails, rocker panels, dog legs (it sounds like you have this), wheel arches (this too), slam panel under the hatch - especially the drivers side, spare tire well

As for paint, take as much off the car as you can. The paint job will be cheaper and look and last better. If you can afford to do it with the glass out, even better.

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20 hours ago, Patcon said:

Common rust areas:

under the battery, front frame rails, rocker panels, dog legs (it sounds like you have this), wheel arches (this too), slam panel under the hatch - especially the drivers side, spare tire well

As for paint, take as much off the car as you can. The paint job will be cheaper and look and last better. If you can afford to do it with the glass out, even better.

Thank you for your reply. I rechecked today and found rust in the 2 locations i mentioned. I brought it to a shop and here's what the quote I got. The Z was resprayed once by the original owner.

 

$5500 - Remove parts (taillights, headlights, bumpers, etc.), repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

$3500 - Leave parts on and mask, repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

$8000 - Sandblast, remove parts (taillights, headlights, bumpers, etc.), repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

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1 hour ago, BayAreaZ650 said:

Thank you for your reply. I rechecked today and found rust in the 2 locations i mentioned. I brought it to a shop and here's what the quote I got. The Z was resprayed once by the original owner.

 

$5500 - Remove parts (taillights, headlights, bumpers, etc.), repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

$3500 - Leave parts on and mask, repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

$8000 - Sandblast, remove parts (taillights, headlights, bumpers, etc.), repair dents/rusts, and a two stage Axalta paint job.

What if you remove most of the parts and save the 2k?

Glass is still a question? You could have a glass company remove the windshield and hatch glass. You could do the quarter windows. $2,000 is a lot of money to strip the car. I can do it solo in maybe 4-5 hours if I drag butt. So double that or so for R&R. Even if it took you 20 hours to R&R all the outside bits, that's $100 an hour. If you make more than $200k a year, it makes sense to sub it out. I don't so I self perform stuff like this.

If the rest of the car looks good, I don't know that I would remove the existing paint. It would be nice to sand it down good, so you don't have excessive thickness but the factory primer is bonded pretty well. Are they going to be doing metal patches for the rust repair? Any specific spot rust treatment?

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I agree with removing parts yourself.  That way you can clean/ polish/repair while the car's in paint jail. You might even discover more rust spots that way and help avoid any surprises of more rust spots.  All of that stuff is pretty easy to remove, except for the door handles and those aren't too difficult,  just awkward for my gorilla fingers....       

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 Another thought. Is the body shop aware of the thickness of the sheet metal in a Z? Sand (media) blasting on thin sheet metal should be done very carefully. It's easy to warp the panels.

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Thanks for all the replies!

- Good idea, I think I will remove the parts by myself. Should I just have the car towed to the paint shop since it'll be missing some parts? What parts should I remove?

- Is sandblasting or stripping it down to the metal necessary? Honestly, I'm just not too sure if there are any hidden places with rust. It's obvious when you see it in certain areas because of the paint bubbling. So far I only saw it on two: Dog leg (2 inch radius, bubbling), Wheel Arch (1 inch radius, bubbling). Besides that, I didn't see any rust in the interior/exterior.

- Removing the glass is a great idea. I'll probably pay a glass company to do it since I'd be saving money by removing the parts myself.

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Basically you remove anything that is not sheet metal.  That means tail lights and panels, running lights, mirror(s), door handles, antenna, bumpers, headlights, badging, quarter windows, door window frames, probably not the grille. Are you going to paint door jambs and the hatch panel also? Then you might need to remove the hatch hardware and door hardware also  and the metal (aluminum) step plates, but the paint shop could handle that with very little effort.   The front and back glass is not hard to get out if you just cut it out with a razor knife. Just cut around the edges and have someone help you lift them out.  Depending on how well the first refresh was done, there could be rust behind the rear taillight panels or under the front and back glass seals, if it was not handled before.  Mine had to be rebuilt.😟

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gwri8 has a pretty good list.

One item I find difficult to remove with out mangling is the drip rail trim. It takes a little practice to get them off with out distorting them. If your window seals are hard at all, I would just cut them and remove the glass. If they are still pliable, I would try to remove the glass with the seal or have a glass company do it. The front windshield is easy to break if you push it too hard.

Mark, also makes a very good point. The sheet metal is very thin on these cars and a careless blaster will destroy a car very quickly.

I would have them DA the whole car really well. They will find any trouble spots at that point. I don't think I would go looking for extra work. There are risks associated with stripping the car back to bare metal. You can develop surface rust and that can cause paint failures later. Even rust that is really not obvious; been there , done that. If the existing paint is adhered well, I don't believe I would pay someone to strip it off...

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I would think about how you want to spend your time. I would definitely fix the leaks at some point but maybe you don't want to do it now. If you do everything else on your list, plus install a set of KYB strut inserts, you can start driving and enjoying the car. And, you can assess further what all needs to be addressed. If you pull the suspension apart and start painting all of the black under the car, you are starting a big project that likely renders your car on stands for a decently long time. Same goes for fixing the leaks. Those jobs open up multiple boxes of worms and could leave you without a car to enjoy for a while. Also, fixing the transmission seals is totally doable but it isn't an insignificant exercise. I did it last summer and it was pretty challenging getting the bolt that connects the shift fork to the shift rod removed (without damaging it) so I could replace the shifting o-ring and seal. Not trying to scare you. It is just not a clutch swap. It is a messy less than intuitive job if you have never been inside of a transmission before. Again though, it really depends on how you want to spend your time. If you really want to devote 6 months to getting all of these things right so you can drive and enjoy after then great. If you think you will get worn out and a bit frustrated when the car has been on stands for months and you can't drive it then maybe that tells you something also.

 

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On 6/19/2019 at 8:33 AM, jonathanrussell said:

I would think about how you want to spend your time. I would definitely fix the leaks at some point but maybe you don't want to do it now. If you do everything else on your list, plus install a set of KYB strut inserts, you can start driving and enjoying the car. And, you can assess further what all needs to be addressed. If you pull the suspension apart and start painting all of the black under the car, you are starting a big project that likely renders your car on stands for a decently long time. Same goes for fixing the leaks. Those jobs open up multiple boxes of worms and could leave you without a car to enjoy for a while. Also, fixing the transmission seals is totally doable but it isn't an insignificant exercise. I did it last summer and it was pretty challenging getting the bolt that connects the shift fork to the shift rod removed (without damaging it) so I could replace the shifting o-ring and seal. Not trying to scare you. It is just not a clutch swap. It is a messy less than intuitive job if you have never been inside of a transmission before. Again though, it really depends on how you want to spend your time. If you really want to devote 6 months to getting all of these things right so you can drive and enjoy after then great. If you think you will get worn out and a bit frustrated when the car has been on stands for months and you can't drive it then maybe that tells you something also.

 

Good points. I definitely want to be able to enjoy the Z and I think I’ll just fix issues as they pop up.

Right now I’ll be installing the shocks and lowering springs. I also got a few things including speakers, a mini amp, and head unit to revamp the audio in the Z. 

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My fiancé and I worked on the Z’s audio system. We took out the old deck and installed a Bluetooth deck, infinity amp, and 2 6x9 infinity speakers in boxes

2EF9AE13-AC7B-4F87-8440-AC0502989F6D.jpeg

8C2B9960-EBE5-4A28-9CFB-7B1D66024CE8.jpeg

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do yourself a favor, if not done already, check the waterpump. look for any weeping of water, and play in the pump shaft. When it goes its no fun and you risk overheating the head.

IF it needs replacement read a LOT about removing the bolts and how to try and avoid breaking them.

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10 hours ago, Dave WM said:

do yourself a favor, if not done already, check the waterpump. look for any weeping of water, and play in the pump shaft. When it goes its no fun and you risk overheating the head.

IF it needs replacement read a LOT about removing the bolts and how to try and avoid breaking them.

Thank you! I checked and it’s still looking good.

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I took the Z out for a two hour cruise and it performed beautifully!

 

I did note a few issues with the Z:

1. Gas tank leak: there’s a few drops coming from the passenger side of the gas tank. I’m planning on getting it redone because there’s also a bit of rust in the tank as well.

2. Turn signal/headlights not working: I have to look into this issue more. Yesterday I plugged in a fusible link and within seconds, it burned out. Do auto parts stores sell fusible links?

3. Fuel Gauge isn’t working.

4. Suspension is bouncy: I bought kyb shocks and am waiting on Eibach springs.

4F7363BC-4A80-41AD-9398-BCE14A783E68.jpeg

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those fuse links do not look factory. I am not sure but if they supply the head light circuit, then you may have a problem in the head light switch itself, but of course could be a short anywhere in the circuit. You are going to have to review the FSM and look at the section that covers that.

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Yep the headlight have a fuse wire, I have the 76 fsm on BE-11 is shows the circuit. I would start by seeing if there is a dead short at the fuse link terminal that leads to the combo switch. Try operating the combo switch (lights on and off repeatedly) and see what effect you have. If no effect disconnect the lead at the combo swich (fsm shows a single red) and see if that clears the short. You are just going to have to work thru it with a multimeter to find the issue. that is IF the circuit is blowing the correct OE fuse link.

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you did not say if the fuse link blows instantly regardless of if the head light switch is on or off. that would help.

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