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Restoration of BringaTrailer 240z - HLS30-35883

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I happened to come across this pic while researching (again) pics of 901 silver.  This picture illustrates what I am seeking to avoid the final look of the "belt" line of the car.  High resolution pic available:

1970-1973_Nissan_Fairlady_Z.jpg

When you examine the body line closely, you can see that it varies both in direction and in sharpness.  At its origination point at the fender, it is a bit soft (instead of sharp).  As you move your sight from there towards the back of the fender, the line sharpens and then softens at the rear fender edge.  Moving onto the door, the first couple inches is soft and actually moved down.  Then you can see the line move up and down  along the door.

That stuff is what I am looking to avoid.

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Anyone ever see this on the 240z gas tanks?  A second drain on the corner?  I didn't notice it until it came back from the shop that cleaned it out.  If not stock, looks like I have another welding project.  

IMG_20200716_215516.jpg

Edited by inline6

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That would've been an issue for me. That weld looks terrible. Get them to buy you a new one that's been on here last month. I mean call somebody when changing/disregarding your instructions and a plan for restoration. Jeez, everyone ASSumes they doing what's best for you.

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If it doesn't leak, I would leave it and paint it black

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If it wasn't there before and they didn't tell you about it before, I'd ask them why they installed it. I'm betting it was for complete drainage at the time of cleaning and or coating. I'd leave it and paint it.

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On ‎7‎/‎20‎/‎2020 at 9:13 PM, inline6 said:

If not stock

It isn't.

For the quality of your restoration this won't do. Weld it up or find an original unaltered tank.

On ‎7‎/‎4‎/‎2020 at 5:00 PM, grannyknot said:

A stiff long board should take care of those soft areas.

The long board coupled with repeated taping of the line and working both above and below the tape is how my painter established the line on Zilver.

 

 

 

Zilver at ZCON 17.jpg

 

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14 hours ago, Zup said:

It isn't.

For the quality of your restoration this won't do. Weld it up or find an original unaltered tank.

The long board coupled with repeated taping of the line and working both above and below the tape is how my painter established the line on Zilver.

Wow!  Zilver is super nice.  I think for the next steps of sanding, I will use tape in the manner you said.  I have been making some progress without, but will need to do that to get it just right.  These pics clearly show imperfections, but at least I am getting closer.  Guide coat is visible below the belt line...

Front left fender...  Back of front left fender and front of left door...

IMG_20200712_112027.jpg  IMG_20200712_112019.jpg  

 

Left door in front of handle (line is not sharp here)...  Above rear wheel well arch (not as defined as it needs to be)...  Rear quarter panel...

IMG_20200712_112012.jpg  IMG_20200712_111933.jpg  IMG_20200712_111926.jpg

 

I didn't think that drain was stock, and don't know if it was or wasn't there when I dropped the tank off to have it cleaned out.  It had about an inch of goo in it from gas that sat for 25 years.  So, maybe they did that to facilitate cleaning it out.  Tank is nice otherwise with just a little work needed to straighten out where the original drain plug is.  I will cut that additional drain out and weld in a repair section.

What brand did you use for undercoats/paint on your car?  I thought Glasurit didn't have a base coat in silver for my car, but I figured out that their database is just incorrect.  They have 901 silver listed for the 240z, but their year range does not include 1971 (I think it shows 72-74 in their system).  They only have the base coat in their 90 line, which is water based.  I watched some videos and learned that it is no problem to use that and then follow with any of their solvent based clears.  That is a big weight off of my mind, as I was thinking I would have to mix brands and hope for the best - not exactly a risk I want to take after spending some much time and effort on getting the body work right.

Edited by inline6

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I use that tape technique to straighten lines. I use a pencil and mark the high points on the door, for example, then I use a 4' level and draw a straight line down the door in pencil, Then I tape one side of it and block it. Then switch to the other side and block it again. Spray high build or filler then repeat...

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I rebuilt the door hinges yesterday with new pins and bushings I got off the seller from Malta on eBay.  I needed to sand the door frame to prep it for paint also, so the doors came off the car for the first time since I have had it.  While off, I will do some light prep to the insides of the doors so that I can spray Spectrum sound deadener in them.  I got it directly from the manufacturer.  I did this with my other 240z way back and it made a big difference in the sound the door makes when opening and shutting.  Just in case I enter the car in shows, that kind of improvement doesn't hurt with judging, right?

 

Hinges as removed - some rust formed between doors and hinge, but not body and hinge.  A grey primer was used on the mating surfaces:

IMG_20200725_131235.jpg  IMG_20200725_131248.jpg  IMG_20200725_131338.jpg

 

Note - doors were mounted on the car when it was painted.  See lack of paint and factory paint run.  Third pic shows back side of my fix to door gap by putting some weld beads along the edge.  Some body filler will be used to finish this area on the back side.

IMG_20200725_131423.jpg  IMG_20200725_131430.jpg  IMG_20200725_131449.jpg

Old hinge pins and bushings had some wear.  I don't know what the old bushings are made out of but they are seem like a "soft" metal.  Factory pin securing "roller" has to be removed to replace the main hinge pin.  I was surprised at the good condition of it.  Lower hinge:

IMG_20200725_142218.jpg  IMG_20200725_142225.jpg  IMG_20200725_145413.jpg

Upper hinge:

IMG_20200725_151501.jpg  IMG_20200725_151544.jpg

 

Nearly all the wear occurs on the pin and bushings.  The replacement pins and bushings fit very well.  Though movement was only slight with the hinges prior to rebuilding for this car, the doors will be not wiggle up and down at all after this fix.

Edited by inline6

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I would use a little fiberglass instead of plastic filler on the weld beads at the lower edge of the door. The fiberglass is much more water resistant than plastic filler

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6 hours ago, Patcon said:

I would use a little fiberglass instead of plastic filler on the weld beads at the lower edge of the door. The fiberglass is much more water resistant than plastic filler

I'm not a body guy at all, but from what I thought to be correct, the statement confuses me.

It is my understanding that all of the liquid and gelled and putty portions of all the body products are plastic (polyester or epoxy). You can smear plastic resin over fiberglass matt. Or you can smear plastic putty (available with or without fiberglass strands dispersed in it) on without the fiberglass matt.

But in the end, you're always using some sort of plastic filler, aren't you?

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On 7/26/2020 at 9:41 PM, Captain Obvious said:

I'm not a body guy at all, but from what I thought to be correct, the statement confuses me.

It is my understanding that all of the liquid and gelled and putty portions of all the body products are plastic (polyester or epoxy). You can smear plastic resin over fiberglass matt. Or you can smear plastic putty (available with or without fiberglass strands dispersed in it) on without the fiberglass matt.

But in the end, you're always using some sort of plastic filler, aren't you?

I learned this from Kevin Tetz's videos. My understanding is that plastic body filler is not water proof. Moisture will actually migrate through it. Fiberglass in contrasts is very water proof. I have found this to be the case in my  own work too. Several years ago I quit using bondo for rotten exterior door jamb repairs and began using fiberglass. the repairs seem to hold up much better over the long haul.

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I have read/heard the same thing about bondo vs. fiberglass.  Since both use the same activator, I would think the resin isn't the part that is susceptible to water, but the other primary material might be the issue.  And now searching (via Google), it looks like the other primary ingredient in body filler is clay/talc which absorbs water, whereas fiberglass does not.  So, that is the difference.

In applications for which I can not be 100% sure that exposure to water is eliminated, I use fiberglass filler.  For example, I used a bit in the inside of the dog leg of the quarter panel/rear of the rocker, in an earlier repair, mainly to fill pitting and a few very small holes left after sandblasting prior rust damage.  I will attempt to seal the car so water will not get in there ever again, but I used a bit of fiberglass filler there just in case.  For repair areas where I am sure water will not ever be present, I use standard body filler.  Along that door edge, seam sealer will seal the lap joint of the skin to the frame, primer and paint will seal the outside of the repair, and I will be using a spray on sound deadening coating on the entire interior of the door which will seal the joint on the inside and keep any water away from the area.   

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While the doors are off, I finished prepping the insides for spray on sound dampening material.  I had some sitting in storage for something like 15 years?  And I was shocked to open it up and see it was still usable.  I don't think this stuff is sold anymore under this name, but I suspect it is the same as the Spectrum product I bought from Second Skin in this second pic.  We'll find out soon enough as I spray more of the inner panels of the car. 

IMG_20200808_134317.jpg  IMG_20200808_132021.jpg  

 

Pictures showing inside of the doors before spraying the sound deadener.  I sandblasted a few spots I could reach to get rid of surface rust.  Interestingly, there is bare metal that didn't even have full surface rust inside the door: 

IMG_20200808_141111.jpg  IMG_20200808_141122.jpg  IMG_20200808_141129.jpg

IMG_20200808_141133.jpg  IMG_20200808_141142.jpg  IMG_20200808_141154.jpg

IMG_20200808_141200.jpg

After spraying the sound deadener.

IMG_20200808_212514.jpg  IMG_20200808_212522.jpg  IMG_20200808_212530.jpg  

IMG_20200808_212557.jpg  IMG_20200808_212616.jpg  IMG_20200808_212625.jpg

IMG_20200808_212647.jpg  IMG_20200808_212708.jpg  IMG_20200808_212718.jpg

IMG_20200808_212724.jpg  IMG_20200808_212737.jpg

 

When the sound deadener is fully applied to the car and the truck bed liner underneath, it will have substantial reduction in Noise Vibration and Harshness (NVH) compared to stock.  The doors will have a very different sound and feel than stock ones.  I think it will be quite a noticeable improvement around the whole car.

 

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I found myself with the inspiration to work on the gas tank today.  I thought it would be pretty easy to be honest.  But, when replacing the brazed on secondary drain plug, I ended up having problems welding one side of my patch panel.  The metal was too thin and I kept getting contaminants causing pin holes.  After chasing that problem for hours, I ended up cutting another section out and making another patch panel.  Both patch panels had compound curves... so they took a while too.  After something like 8 hours of work on it, I pretty much got past trying for perfection and made a slight mistake with the alignment of the second patch panel.  Anyway, I sealed up the openings in the tank and rubbed soapy water on the repair area while I put compressed air in the tank and after sealing one tiny pin hole, it is finally sealed.  

Starting point - extra drain plug brazed in place an dented bottom where original drain plug is.  Paint removed with high speed angle grinder and red 3M paint removal disc.  Interestingly, there is a bright silver coating on the outside surface of the tank that I ground through in places.  Must be galvanized from the factory.

IMG_20200716_215516.jpg  IMG_20200809_115121.jpg  IMG_20200809_115134.jpg

 

After using a crow bar tip under the edge of the drain plug to pull it up some (with leverage against wood strip set in place against the tank), I used the stud welder to put pin in low areas.  I pulled them with the slide hammer puller carefully.  Several rounds of welding pins in place, pulling, and cutting them off were required:

IMG_20200809_120500.jpg  IMG_20200809_120515.jpg  IMG_20200809_125239.jpg

 

Original shape for the most part restored.  Next, I progressed to the extra drain plug:

IMG_20200809_125248.jpg  IMG_20200809_125315.jpg  IMG_20200809_125306.jpg

 

I cut it out and made a replacement (compound curve).  Unfortunately, many more hours and another patch were required.  One edge of the second patch panel is not well aligned with the original tank metal.  That is the "line" in the third pic here... because the patch panel is recessed a bit more on that edge.

IMG_20200809_144759.jpg  IMG_20200809_144825.jpg  IMG_20200809_214858.jpg

Another angle:

IMG_20200809_214910.jpg

 

It's not perfect, but I am confident that it doesn't have any pin holes.  I was able to seal all of the openings in the tank and repeated give it hits of compressed air while rubbing soapy water on the repair area.  I did find one pin hole that had to be taken care of, but can find no more.  I will test it again before stripping the paint on the outside of the tank and prepping for primer and paint.  Wouldn't it be awful if I got it all beautiful and in the car and then found a pin hole???  Yeah - that is what I keep thinking.  Going to make sure it is air tight before I go to the next step.

 

 

Edited by inline6
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The best way to find a pin hole I have found is to pour a little bit of rubbing alcohol or Methyl Hydrate into the tank, it is so thin it will locate any hole in seconds.  It evaporates quickly if you have to weld again.

How is that sound deadener  applied? Schutz gun?

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17 hours ago, grannyknot said:

The best way to find a pin hole I have found is to pour a little bit of rubbing alcohol or Methyl Hydrate into the tank, it is so thin it will locate any hole in seconds.  It evaporates quickly if you have to weld again.

How is that sound deadener  applied? Schutz gun?

Thanks for the tip.  Yes, Schutz gun. I run about about 5 feet of clear tube from the gun pickup tube, to another foot long stainless tube that I drop in the container.

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Progress (which at times feels absolutely like none) is happening with the body work.  I think.  Though most of it ends up on the floor after sanding, I am now two gallons in on the high build primer and need to buy a third.  That's going to be over $1000 in primer alone.  Not how you should do it folks.  Next time around, I think I will try applying body filler over entire panels and sanding down, followed by a few coats of sprayable polyester filler, followed by the high build primer (just a few coats should be needed).    

Here is a brief video showing the passenger front fender at the critical body line where it starts just above the wheel well opening.  You can see that there is some distortion in the reflection, indicating some more work to be done here.  Not quite there.  Much of the rest of the car is getting to where it needs to be however.  

 

I have been spending time as of late, working on additional panel fit issues.  The cowl panel is a bit of a challenge.  Because it is just a single thickness with no backside reinforcement, the large, flat areas in the front corners are susceptible to moving up and down very easily.  Before final sanding is done on this panel, I will be sure to replace the foam that resides underneath in these areas (proper thickness is important) to allow for proper location of the horizontal surface.  Then final sanding will be done to make these areas nice and straight.  

Inspection doors were hand twisted/straightened for near perfect fit.  These again, are made from single thickness metal sheet with little in their construction to hold them to shape.  Heights of fender top surface, cowl panel surface, and inspection doors were all massaged to make them line up.  I actually had forgotten to fit the gas lid prior to doing body work on it, and laughed at how bad it was when I test fitted it to the car.  Quite a bit of hand adjustment was necessary to give the right profile curvature to match the quarter panel appropriately.  

 

Passenger side door panel gap (with rebuilt hinges is looking good I think):

 

Edited by inline6
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So after another month of weekends, I have little progress to report.  I have been sanding more, and applying more primer in the quest for perfection.  The panels are slowly being transformed.  

Here is a video of the driver side fender with silicone/wax remover sprayed on to provide shine so the reflections can be examined.  Below the belt line is super straight now.  Above the belt, but still on the side of the fender still needs some straightening.  It has a high spot in the middle of the expanse between the back of the wheel well opening and the back edge of the fender.

 

 

 

Edited by inline6
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In a couple of more hours tonight, I was able to get the driver door, rocker panel, and most of the driver side quarter panel sanded with 240 grit.  The door is super straight.  I am very happy with it.  The quarter panel has a dip at the front that I can probably address when the next round of primer application.  The quarter panel is pretty good, but the belt line in the area directly above the wheel well is tricky and I see a couple of spots that are not quite right.  

Videos:

 

 

Edited by inline6
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Some more progress towards getting this thing painted!  Insert pretty boring videos here: 🙂

Roof panel:

 

 

 

Passenger door - not good enough yet!

 

 

 

Edited by inline6

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