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Barefootdan's 280z Build


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Thanks @Patcon and @Av8ferg
 

That makes me feel better about not getting every nook and cranny. I ended up doing most of the front half to make sure the scraps of tar were also taken care off. I stopped in the center console after reading the feedback. Not sure if it looks better now or worse since we can see all the rot 😅 I’ll POR15 the nearly everything except the rear hatch that has sound deadening still. It’s solid back there so no need and it’s under carpet. Ill do the front by the storage compartments and spare tire well for uniformity and there’s slight surface rust. The annoying part of over at least!

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Spent some time getting a grasp on the floor pan patches. If you’re scared of shoddy body work, look away now! First time ever doing something like this so I’m just aiming for function over form 😅 I originally had about 4 small cuts in the driver panel but then I realized it is probably way easier to just make one large cut  looking back I should have made it a nice square but I was trying to keep as much original floor as possible.

 

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I used 18g steel sheet to get my panels. A trusty hammer to form it and a lot of hand bending for the curves. I really need a bench vise…

 

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I warned you to not look didn’t I?! 
Well if you’re still reading after THAT then I’ll let you know I’m about 80% there. A few more bends I want to get straighter and closer, I’d like to smooth off the corners and edges, and cut out my holes for the drain plugs. I’ll then use rivets in the corners and down the frame rails to hold down the sheet. This, combined with 3M panel bond and seam sealer should give me a decent patch….functionally. I could probably get away with only panel bond but the old school in me begs for a mechanical bond in addition to the chemical bond. 
 

Once the seam sealer and panel bond cure I’ll be doing POR15 over the entire floor to hide my “body work”. 
 

Happy Thanksgiving 🙂 

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On 11/20/2021 at 1:21 PM, Av8ferg said:

Even after I finish my Z and make the interior look like it wasn’t parked on Venus for a decade my wife will probably never want to ride in it.
1. Too Loud
2. Too Bumpy
3. No XM radio
4. No heated seats
5. Too many rattles
6. Embarrassed to be seen by others
7. Smells funny
8. No cup holders
9. “Is that gas I smell”
10. No airbags...”Is this safe”

 

 

My wife took my 280Z for a test drive once and I doubt she will ever do that again. We almost missed the driveway. When she finally parked is and rattled of your top ten plus "stupid car has no power steering". Her last remark was; I can't beleive you wasted all your time on that...

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29 minutes ago, Barefootdan said:

I used 18g steel sheet to get my panels. A trusty hammer to form it and a lot of hand bending for the 

Well if you’re still reading after THAT then I’ll let you know I’m about 80% there. A few more bends I want to get straighter and closer, I’d like to smooth off the corners and edges, and cut out my holes for the drain plugs. I’ll then use rivets in the corners and down the frame rails to hold down the sheet. This, combined with 3M panel bond and seam sealer should give me a decent patch….functionally. I could probably get away with only panel bond but the old school in me begs for a mechanical bond in addition to the chemical bond. 
 

Once the seam sealer and panel bond cure I’ll be doing POR15 over the entire floor to hide my “body work”. 
 

Happy Thanksgiving 🙂 

I'm no expert at rust repairs, but the floor does have a degree of structual rigidity and riviting the patches may compromise that.

@grannyknot has done a couple of S30 restorations and knows more about this than I ever would. Maybe he can enlighten me at least.

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If you have no other options then a rivet is better than nothing but if you want a permanent fix then it really should be welded,  mind you, the new panel bonds are tremendously strong and as long as the both sides to be bonded are properly prepared then you could probably get away with what you're planning to do.  If the metal of the original floor pan has any rust then you'll need to sand that down to clean fresh metal and be sure that epoxy seam never sees any water, seal it a couple of times.

I haven't used the 3M bond before but comparable products that I have used recommend 80 grit sanding of both surfaces. Your car is coming along well, do you think you will have it on the road next spring?

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Definitely not the best option, welding would always be my number one…if I had a welder 😞 

Since I can’t, that’s why I’m doubling up on the 3M panel bond (chemical bond) with rivets (mechanical bond) and top it off with seam sealer. 
 

I did some research on panel bond and it’s a fairly popular form of construction in newer OEM cars, specifically in the German market. I’m not worried about it failing if I ensure proper preparation. It’s not that I don’t trust using only panel bond but I want the rivets since I don’t trust myself 100% and if I don’t get a perfect adhesion, the rivets will hopefully give enough support. 
 

I’d like to get the car body work done right when I paint it, so if it should only last a couple years and I’ll be satisfied. 
 

Bottom will of course be seam sealed as well and undercoated. 
 

@grannyknot I hope to get in a couple nice cruises before summer hits here in Phoenix. I’ll need to get the floor done, wiring harness completed, and then interior put back together. I have a few months! 

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@Barefootdanwhat did you use to scuff down the floors? And how was it getting the tar pad off? I have it on my floors and am debating if I want to take it off or keep it? Seeing as mine doesn't have as much floor damage as yours, would you recommend leaving it on or removing it? I have pneumatic sanding equipment and sand blaster at my disposal so I'm torn as to which way I should go... Personally, I was thinking of removing it and using POR15 throughout. Also, what do you plan to do with the undercarriage? Thanks in advance for your input. 

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I started off chiseling away with a flathead and hammer. It works fine but is so slow. I then picked up some dry ice and it was so much faster. I crushed it in a bin and used isopropyl alcohol to help spread the freeze. A rubber mallet cracked it off pretty easily. Speed Academy on YouTube has a great example of it working on their Celica. 
 

Then I used a paint stripper disc on my grinder to get the remaining goo and paint off. I liked that I removed it so I know there wasn’t anything hiding underneath. POR15 will be my coating of choice too and probably just a general undercoating for the bottom side once I’m all wrapped up inside 🙂 
 

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Once the tar mat is really cold, it tends to come off in big pieces.

Most just spread it in the floor board,  chill, then use a hammer and a scraper. Some have even been able to use a rubbef mallett and just strike the floor and the mat shatters off in pieces.

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Finished getting in the panels this weekend. Feels super good to have floors again! The patches went in really smoothly with the 3M panel adhesive hardening like steel in my test cup. POR15 is on order so that will be my next step! I gotta figure out how to get the Datsun out to wash the floor without it running...

I began to pull the rear sub harness out but realized it has quite the runs behind permanent panels and such. I was going to run string to pull through but I thought that there really isnt anything I am removing from the rear sub harness like I am with the front. So I may keep it OEM for now. Then just update the main plugs that go into my new harness. 

 

I'll share photos after POR15...white seam sealer doesnt look great 😄 

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I am trying to decide on what sort of interior I want for the Z. After seeing how well @Av8ferg turned out with the diamond stitching, I am leaning that route. Looking at carpet kits, most, if not all 280z kits have the carpet on the transmission tunnel. Which makes sense as it is the OEM style. Ideally I'd like to find the floor pan carpet pieces on their own and then DIY the vinyl for the transmission tunnel, kick plates, and rear bulkhead. StockInteriors has the kits for the 240 and 260 which contains all the parts I want, but before I buy, I want to confirm it would fit a 280z? 🙂 

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So I bought MSAs loop carpet and plan to use it for the flooring.   Once the vinyl is in an glued down I’ll take those MSA floor pan pieces and cut them down to size and have a local carpet shop sew in the wrapped edges.  $3.50 a foot, so it’s cheap for the, to do it.  Maybe $40 to do that max.  Then I’ll glue idown so it transitions nicely between vinyl and carpet.  This is my plan

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Thanks that makes sense! Great idea to have a surefire way of the carpets fitting. If a 240z carpet isnt a good fit in a 280z I'll follow that route.

Edit: I think I found a good solution. Zspecialties has a 5 piece kit: 2 front carpet pieces, 2 underseat, 1 rear cargo deck carpet. Seems to be just what I am looking for. They even have sewn bound edges and they have a high quality dense padding glued to them!

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Worked on wrapping up my flooring this weekend. Started off with POR15 base coat which was silver. I used their fiberglass fabric to fill in any extra pin holes I had laying around. No longer in the stone ages like the Flintstones! 
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Then used the gloss black for the second coat. This helped a ton with finding where I missed a second coat. If I were to leave the floors raw, I would use their top coat. It adds UV protection and a satin finish. The gloss black shows every imperfection! But it does level extremely nicely. No brush strokes in site. 
 

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Lastly I used Killmat as my sound deadening. I started off with just trying to hit the main flat spots of each panel but I have way more material than I though I needed so I started to fill in the blanks. Overall I’m happy with how it came out. Not that it matters since it will all be covered with carpet 😅

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But boy what a nice change to be able to sit in the car and not worry about getting tetanus or dragging dirt into the house. No more smells of musk and I won’t hear every rock and pebble 😊

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