Considering a 1980zx

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    Howdy y'all, i'm new to this forum so my apologies if this isn't the right place to ask this. I have a current daily driver (2008 Toyota tundra) and I'm finishing up my first project car (free 1998 ford expedition) so naturally being around hot rods all the time I'm looking for another project car. I've loved these Z cars for a long time and i love v8s. i found a 1980 280 ZX with a chevy 350 swapped in (i know these engines like the back of my hand) that I'm going to look at this Sunday. I know how to check engine trans ect. but is there some things that are Z specific to look out for? i know around the windshield, battery, rear hatch and spare tire are common rust spots, are there any places that are super concerning? I'll try to upload some pictures, cosmetically its not great and needs some wiring but i've started with worse before... Thanks!


    -Jackson Householder



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    On 1/11/2020 at 8:55 AM, Reptoid Overlords said:

    My '80ZX has bent up frame rails from the PO using the wrong jacking procedure.

    I have never seen one without!  Even the very good one i'm restoring has some damage.. one day i'll take those little bumps out..

    Things to check/worry about..

    I've got one concern for you.. a V8 in an already not so very strong chassis can be a problem.. even more when it's a T-bar chassis.  The longer length of a s130 makes it not strong enough for a V8.

    Look for rust direct under the floor where the front safety belts are hanging..  between the point were the rear axel is attached and the side of the car. There is a piece of floor that is double layered steel.. and Always a problem.. (I'll put a pic in my thread.. restoring a 1979 slickroof 2+2 280zx this afternoon.. after that i (now!) go into the paintboot for some more painting parts! )

    Edited by dutchzcarguy

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    well i ended up buying it, texas car ended up being rust free on the underside, almost no rust on the car in general, few whisky dings but nothing too major, fuel cell was empty so i won’t have to clean that, the wiring seems basic and shouldn’t be too bad, once it’s running and driving it should be down to paint body and upgrades. no damage on frame rails and no rust in the place you were telling me about. will update y’all when i get it running, thanks for the help!

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