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interested in buying a 280z in France, does those pics look alright or sketchy


nico

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hello

I'm lusting for an s30 since a few years now and i'm starting to look for one seriously... Just found this forum from reddit and it looks like i have a lot to read 🙂

I found a 280Z imported from california that the owner is selling after 2 years. I asked him to send me pics of the underside and here is what i got... what do you think (rust wise)?

cheers

 

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Edited by nico
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Hard to say without seeing more.

What I believe I see is “boxed out” frame rails and at least a patch welded in there at the driver’s foot well and not much else, meaning they just patched those areas and didn’t do a crazy full resto. Could be ok, could be more to do

I’m not that familiar with the earlier Zs so I’m sure others will have more


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Frame rails look standard to me. Need a lot more photos to really get a good sense of the car's condition but from what you've posted it looks fine to me.

I do see a patch at the front of the driver's floor, and it does looks like there's a weld seam on the frame rail in that area, but I'm not sure if that's what it is since I only see one weld, and no actual patch. Also looks to be a patch on the passenger side under the seat. Need better photos of that area. 

Edited by rturbo 930
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From what you've posted, It seems to be in fair condition. More inspection will give you more answers.  I've definitely seen worse.  All Z's need some attention and this one is no different.  Some surface rust underneath but it can be managed.  Floor board has repairs, that's a good thing.  Of course you'll need to see it all up close.   Engine sounds great and I'll assume it's drivable.  Your decision will depend on what you are able to put into a 40 something year old sports car.  It's a journey for sure.  If the price is good I would definitely consider it.

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That looks like a fairly average S30 that you'd find in the Southwest US or California. The stock frame rails have definitely been covered with an aftermarket repair rail not unlike the BadDog rails. The floor has been patched on the left side as noted above. The undercarriage could use some attention but that's pretty common - make the top look good, people rarely look underneath.  I've seen a lot worse even here in Arizona where we have almost no water...

Those pics aren't going to tell you the whole story. You're going to want to look under the hatch at the sill corners, the door bottoms, the rockers, the dog leg in front of the rear wheels, the bottoms of the front fenders, under the cowl, under the carpet and seats in the cockpit and maybe the spare tire well. On a 280Z you might want to check around the windshield frame as well. Look for bulging of the paint in any of these areas.

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47 minutes ago, gwri8 said:

From what you've posted, It seems to be in fair condition. More inspection will give you more answers.  I've definitely seen worse.  All Z's need some attention and this one is no different.  Some surface rust underneath but it can be managed.  Floor board has repairs, that's a good thing.  Of course you'll need to see it all up close.   Engine sounds great and I'll assume it's drivable.  Your decision will depend on what you are able to put into a 40 something year old sports car.  It's a journey for sure.  If the price is good I would definitely consider it.

thanks for your answer

yeah it's driveable and will pass the local mot before it's sold, dashboard is new, interior is ok... comes with 240 bumpers, has a 5 speed zx gearbox.

Ac and heater apparently not working... Don't care much about AC i would probably get rid of it.

It's actually from Florida and not Cali, my mistake.

the price is 21k usd which will probably make you fall from your chair if you live in the us... i regularly see Z for more than 30k usd here in france and EU. Rust buckets are often 10-12k usd here.  I will try to go see it with a mechanic when our lockdown ends.

 

 

 

Edited by nico
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Unfortunately $20,000 is about the price just to get into the game these days, from your pics it looks pretty solid, previous repairs show someone has cared for it.  They are not nice looking repairs but they look strong. Ask to see a pic with the battery removed, that's always a trouble spot for rust.

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A interesting, possible option for you is to contact a member we have in France, I believe he is about 400 to 500km southwest of you.  He is Sean Dezart, owner of a very high quality exhaust system supplier as well as other unique parts for our cars.  He is very experienced & knowledgeable with S30's and may be able to give you his opinion on the car.     Another possibility is the Fairlady Z Car Club of France.

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The picture of the battery tray is: A HOLE IN ONE ! (sidepanel..) 😆

I think that if you are a good welder you can make something of this car..

I don't know about boxed frame rails.. you @mailnome mean there are framerails over the old ones?.. i don't like that.. i think you (nico) have to consider new floors and rails and ad the cost to the car...  i would go for a 240z not a 280z, carbs are so much more simple.   Have you looked on www.marktplaats.nl here in the netherlands for a zed? sometimes there are good cars for the money.. 

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