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Thread: Finally got one...now to make it mine: 1973 240z Refresh / Personalisation

  1. #1
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default Finally got one...now to make it mine: 1973 240z Refresh / Personalisation

    Hello All,

    I got serious about buying a Z over the summer. I've been in love with them since I was about 8. I've been reading the forums for about six months and after test driving two found Layla three weeks ago. She's a two owner car, originally from VA but owned since 1976 from the guy I bought it from. He bought it from a Datsun dealership when it was three years old. He drove it around TX and TN in the 70s and 80s and into the 90s. 159,XXX original miles. He said the first owner installed a roll bar, chrome rims, and headers.

    I have all of his registrations and most documentation of stuff he's done to it. It has pretty much sat in storage for the past 10-15 years with him spending $2,000 a couple years ago (have receipts) trying to get it back on the road. He said this car has outlived any relationship he's ever had, and backed out of selling it to someone else once before. I'm not going to say I stole it, but he gave me one heck of a deal in my opinion including a military discount.

    Before I bought it I had it put on a lift and did a dry compression test on the engine. It is "virtually rust free," with the factory undercoating still on it. It was repainted 10 years ago in the factory silver color. There is a 3"x3" patch pop riveted onto the driver's side floor, and 2"x2" hole on the passengers side under the seat, likely from the A/C condensation. He told me he never looked under the car. Not necessarily believable, but I believe some people never do so. I also have the FSM and the Mechanic's manual, not sure what it's called, and the carb balance meter. There is also a 1.5" hole under the batter tray.

    The interior looks great in my opinion; it has a dashcap with one crack, seat covers, stock floor mats, brand new carpet otherwise. Headliner is original and looks great.

    The engine compression yielded 145-150 psi in all cylinders except one; 1st cylinder was 135. I would've liked higher numbers, but the engine has a good amount of miles so I'm happy at this point. When I test drove it, the car was a little sluggish, but the guy was just frustrated saying "it's not the car it used to be." He said his local mechanic refused to rebuilt the SUs.

    Since I've had it, I've done the following things:

    Things I've done thus far:

    - Castrol high mileage 10w-30 oil change with "engine restore," Lucas oil treatment, and sea foam. Normally I wouldn't put this many additives in, but the car has basically been sitting for 10 years.

    - Filled gas tank with 93 octane gasoline and fuel system cleaner to help burn off carbon deposits. (I think I'll go lower next tank)

    - Adjusted intake and exhaust valves to factory specifications.

    - Replaced rattling muffler with a Magnaflow Turbo XL model.

    - Replaced 2 year old champion spark plugs with Bosch platinum version. I wanted NGK plugs to go with my wires but they weren't in stock. Plugs were gapped at the higher end of the factory recommendation to accommodate for the higher octane fuel to 0.035".

    - Spent two hours cleaning the upper half of the carbs and balancing them to factory specs. I will rebuild them within two months.

    - Cleaned/degreaser valve cover.

    - Next steps are to put in new distributor points, condenser, and oil pressure sending unit. Flush transmission and rear end gear oil. Buy a timing light and dial in the timing. Replace/upgrade coil.

    I have been meaning to start this thread since I bought the car; I am behind so I'll be updating the progress I've already completed on a gradual basis. The pictures are after the things I did listed above.

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    Thanks for reading.

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    Good looking Z.....

  3. #3
    No more body roll! SteveJ's Avatar
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    Welcome. Where in Georgia are you located?
    73 240Z
    74 260Z

    Blue's collection of tech tips - A great place to look for answers
    XenonS30 -The cheap source for FSMs
    Georgia Z Club
    Fiddling with Z Cars - Z car tips & tricks and pictures of my car-loving life.
    Steve's CARtography - Just car pictures.

  4. #4
    Torch Wielding Villager gogriz91's Avatar
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    Welcome from Warner Bubba.
    '73 HLS30 129806 ; L-28, street cam, SUs, 5-speed, Koni's, Suspension techniques springs, swaybars, 3.90 R200 LSD

    Heavily medicated for your protection

  5. #5
    Registered User 5thhorsemann's Avatar
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    So I guess you know where all the discretionary spending will be going. If I may make a suggestion, go Pertronics instead of points, set it and forget it. That comment will draw some hits I’m sure, but I love mine.

    Nice car!

  6. #6
    No more body roll! SteveJ's Avatar
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    By the way, you can get NGKs at a good price through Amazon. I stock up on them, myself.
    73 240Z
    74 260Z

    Blue's collection of tech tips - A great place to look for answers
    XenonS30 -The cheap source for FSMs
    Georgia Z Club
    Fiddling with Z Cars - Z car tips & tricks and pictures of my car-loving life.
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  7. #7
    Casey H Casey_z's Avatar
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    Welcome

    Love the silver z

  8. #8
    Still plays with cars kenz240z's Avatar
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    Welcome to the club. Looks like you got yourself one very nice Z car!
    Kenny P.

    '73 240Z
    '82 ZX L28
    '82 ZX 5-speed
    Round top SU's
    Tokico HP struts
    Tokico Springs
    Urethane bushings

    my gallery

  9. #9
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    I'm in Augusta, GA.

    Thought I'd take some time to show you guys where I'm at. I'm trying to not get too far ahead of myself buying parts, tearing it up, etc. Since I bought the car I've put about 300 miles on it. A complete joy to drive. It's funny how my Corvette costs 10 times more than the Z but the Z puts a bit wider smile on my face.

    It ran A LOT better after adjusting the valves and doing the minor work on the carbs. I bought the 240Z Tune Up video from Z Therapy and that's helping a lot too.

    The car has been on jack stands for a couple weeks now.

    I installed a Sony MP3 CD Player with iPod input and amp pre-outs. Also a Boss Powered Subwoofer I originally purchased for a different vehicle. It's about the size of an encyclopedia. The car has 4x6" speakers in the rear body panel from the 80s. I have Planet Audio 4x6" plate speakers to install. The front had 4" round speakers in the front kick panels (80s too) but one wasn't there so the fronts aren't hooked up yet.

    I replaced a blown blinker and map light bulb. Installed Sylvania "Cool Blue" headlights. Not sure how they look yet but are supposed to be a large improvement over standard headlights. I also have 55W fog lights to install, either below the bumper or the bumper bar.

    I replaced to used oil jug caps on the brake booster with new Tokico caps (the first item with a price that scared me). I installed a new Nissan Oil Pressure sending unit. This also solved a leak I had on that side of the engine.

    I soon realized that the engine bay was simply dirty. With some elbow grease the inner fenders, under the hood, etc., look as nice as the exterior paint. This led me to start to partially disassembling the engine for cleanup.

    I have a Pertronix 3 ohm coil which from what I understand will cause me to lose the ballast resistor. Soon to be installed. The distributor cap and points were new (2 years old and hardly used) so I'm keeping them on but readjusted the points gap.

    There was no smog equipment on the car. I took the carbs, linkage, intake, heat shield, header, and exhaust off. I've never worked with aluminum parts before, and it was amazing to see that a little bit of degreaser and a bench grinder with wire disk will do to old, dirty, oxidized aluminum.

    I have spent a couple hours cleaning the intake and balance bar. It is motivating to see how good they look. All hoses will be replaced. Most broke or would not break free during removal. I took pictures of everything on the way, to serve me when I put it back together. Here are some shots of the teardown so far:

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    I'm going to get the header sand blasted and repaint it, then cure it on the car once the carbs are rebuilt. I purchased a NOS kit from Ebay, without directions unfortunately. I'm hoping with the FSM and mechanic's manual I'll be ok. I'm thinking about tracking down some SM needles.

    My next steps are to finish the tear down on the passenger's side. I removed the remainder of the water/coolant hose going around the engine. I removed battery hold down, battery, battery tray. Next step is to drop the starter/solenoid to clean and repaint it.

    The passenger's side is a lot messier thanks to the (factory?) A/C. For those of you who have been in my shoes, how did you deal with the original A/C on your car? I'm trying to be cheap nowaways due to the holidays and I've already amassed enough parts to keep me busy for a while. The PO told me the A/C works, it just needs to be recharged. I haven't tried it yet. It will be very difficult to degrease/repaint the block and leave all the A/C components (mostly the hoses are in the way) where they are. Advice? Tear it all out and leave it out? Tear it all out and put it back in? Leave it all in and work around it while cleaning that side?
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  10. #10
    Still plays with cars kenz240z's Avatar
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    You are making good progress with the cleaning and repairs. Degreasing/repainting the block will be difficult unless you can remove everything on/around the engine. Painting the block will require a lot of masking which is time consuming even with the engine out of the car, unless the engine is disassembled (no head/timing cover/oil pan, etc...). But, take your time and you should get good results.

    As far as A/C, you can have your existing system recharged. May require some work to get good cooling, such as sealing any air leaks between the blower housing and the evaporator. There have been a few threads about this, do a search for more details. Another option is to install a Nostalgia Air or Vintage Air system. Again, there are several threads about these systems, search for more details.
    Kenny P.

    '73 240Z
    '82 ZX L28
    '82 ZX 5-speed
    Round top SU's
    Tokico HP struts
    Tokico Springs
    Urethane bushings

    my gallery

  11. #11
    Registered User Travel'n Man's Avatar
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    Welcome to the site - pull that header and send it to JetHot for refinishing - you'll be glad you did!

    http://www.jet-hot.com/
    Life's a journey; enjoy the ride!

    Mitchell
    L28 - N42 Block w/Flat tops - N42 Rebello Head & Cam - Triple 40 PHH Mikuni's - Headers - Recaro Seats -
    R180 3.9 Diff - Close Ratio 5 Speed - Toyota Vented Brake Upgrade w/ Porterfield High Performance Pads & Shoes

    1972 Datsun 240z
    HLS30-75040


  12. #12
    Registered User Bonzi Lon's Avatar
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    Welcome to the club. You are making great progress. I agree on the Corvette comment, I had a 75. It ran like a scaled cat, but the rest was a piece of junk. Cost me a small fortune. I told everybody my Z was 10 times better than that 'squeaky Vette'.

    I have a thing for 73's. What would be the VIN & build date be?

    Bonzi Lon
    1973 HLS30-168500
    1968 SPL311-18100
    1969 HLS30-000110 SOLD Shipped to Dubai UAE
    CZCC#11300

    Ones and Zeros

    "We drive only blue cars." Dishwalla

  13. #13
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Looks like I'm just going to pull the L24. With the entire driver's side of the engine disassembled, along with the starter, fuel rail, etc., I decided to go ahead and remove the three or four bolts to lift the motor right up and out. A full degreasing/painting of the engine will follow. I figure then it will be that much easier to remove dirt and grime from the engine bay.

    I think I'm leaning towards leaving the A/C intact. It is a dealer installed (my impression) York unit. I just don't like how messy it seems to make that side of my engine bay look. Not to mention I imagine the system adds a solid 60-90 pounds.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  14. #14
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default Update Sep 2012

    Alright, I'm bringing this back from the dead, but I have a bunch of updates. I'm having an F54/E88 combo built by Dunnaway Race Engines in Washington, GA. The block is from a 1983 280ZX with 140,000 original miles. I also acquired the 5 speed for a total of $300. Not a bad deal I believe.

    The shop is building the motor exactly how I want it. I'm hoping for 220 plus crank hp. The shop did extensive work on porting the head, 280z stainless steel valves, new hardened valve seals and guides, the whole nine yards. Everything is going to be new except crank and connecting rods. I purchased a stage III Schneider Cam Kit that includes new springs and rocker arms. It wasn't cheap--I hope it's worth it. I'm going to go with 0.5 mm overbore cast flat top pistons. The head was CCed and the shop owner said I should be at 9.5:1 compression ratio given my stroke and bore combo. Everything I've read says F54/E88 will be at 10.4:1 as a baseline. If I'm between those numbers I'll be happy. And if I have to buy a few gallons of 100 octane every tank to save myself from retarding the timing, I won't be bothered either.

    I purchased a set of rebuilt JDM Triple SK Carbs with TWM intake to run on the engine. Not cheap and again, I hope it was worth the money. I also have the original set of SUs on rebuilt by me on the shelf if I change my mind.

    The motor will be done in about a week and a half so I'm hurrying to prep the engine bay.

    Yesterday was spent marking wires and removing the block. I decided to keep the 4 speed transmission in for now and save the trans swap for another project down the road. All in all it only took about 15 minutes to pull the engine. I intend to keep it forever if I want to go back to 100% original (maybe Rebello rebuilt) some day.

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    All in all it was a good day! Today I'm welding in a 2x2" patch panel for the battery tray. The frame is in impeccable condition. I can still read the sticker on the steering rack even! Making progress with Layla really brightens up my day and makes me appreciate life.



    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  15. #15
    Registered User siteunseen's Avatar
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    The day you crank it for the first time you'll be the happiest and the most anxious person in Georgia.

    "Layla, you've got me on my knees.
    Layla, I'm begging, darling please.
    Layla, darling won't you ease my worried mind."

  16. #16
    Registered User 5thhorsemann's Avatar
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    Go man go.

    I think you are getting carried away by you're new car, perhaps a bit of OCD developing where your Z is concerned. It usually takes a year or two for someone to get this far into their car after they drive it for a few thousand miles. Looks like you went passed kiddi pool and straite to the high dive.

    Lookin' good!

  17. #17
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    The addiction is in full mode,,,,,that is just fine, I have the same syndrome with my silver Z
    Last edited by 72 OJ; 09-02-2012 at 10:13 AM.

  18. #18
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default Battery tray -- and finally...some power!

    I did this shortly after my last post waaay back in September:

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    I'll post a picture later of the finished product. Again, that was a whopping four months ago. What have I done since then? Let me think. Waited FOREVER for my engine to be finished. There were some hiccups along the way. Sourcing ARP rod bolts. Choosing a cast piston. Re-ordering a few different sized lash pads for the proper cam/lobe wipe.

    I'm on my way out of the Army, so that means the funds won't be flowing quite so well but I still have a little nest egg to work with. Good news--more time for Layla!

    I picked up this bad boy last Friday:

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    Here are some details:

    F54/E88 with a very intensive port job
    Oversize 280zx stainless steel valves
    ARP main, head, rod bolts
    L28 polished/balanced crank, connecting rods
    cast flat top pistons .020 overbore
    full timing chain kit
    Schneider Stage III cam kit (including rockers, springs, etc.)
    polished water pump/timing cover
    (to be installed)
    new NISMO high flow oil pump (any reviews for this--part number 15010-S800A)
    new 280zx gear reduction starter
    new 60 amp alternator w/ plug adapter

    I will be painting an area of the passenger's side frame rail today and welding in the battery tray. Then bolting on the engine accessories!

    Question: the local pull-a-parts have no Mazda RX7s for the fuel pump swap (I have triple SKs). What PSI does the factory mechanical pump put out? Will it at least let me run the engine for 15-20 minutes at 2000 RPM as my engine builder suggested? Has anyone over tried to run triples with only the mechanical pump? I figure it'll just die out at the upper RPM range?

    Otherwise I think (for now) I'll put my rebuilt SUs back on for a simpler, quicker way to break in the engine ... and take it for a ride!

    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  19. #19
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    One last note: the engine builder said the compression ratio is right around 9.9:1.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  20. #20
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    My N42/N42 L28 is running about 10.3:1 according to my builder and I run 93 octane gas with 14 DEG BTDC @900 rpm and 32 DEG BTDC @ 3100 rpm. No pinging at all at this point. I am going to try 17 deg BTDC. You should be fine. There are many pumps you can use to run your SK's. Find out what kind of pressure they need though. You will most likely need a regulator, but some pumps are self regulated. I went through 3 pumps before I found a combination of pressure and noise I liked.

    Did the engine builder put the eccentric ring on the front of your cam? If so then you can probably get away with starting your car on a mechanical pump. I would also suggest you get a WIDE band O2 sensor to help you in tuning those carbs. Or esle you will be just relying on plugs to give you a good reading, and that can be misleading depending on your technique.

    good luck and keep up the great updates.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  21. #21
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    My N42/N42 L28 is running about 10.3:1 according to my builder and I run 93 octane gas with 14 DEG BTDC @900 rpm and 32 DEG BTDC @ 3100 rpm. No pinging at all at this point. I am going to try 17 deg BTDC. You should be fine. There are many pumps you can use to run your SK's. Find out what kind of pressure they need though. You will most likely need a regulator, but some pumps are self regulated. I went through 3 pumps before I found a combination of pressure and noise I liked.

    Did the engine builder put the eccentric ring on the front of your cam? If so then you can probably get away with starting your car on a mechanical pump. I would also suggest you get a WIDE band O2 sensor to help you in tuning those carbs. Or esle you will be just relying on plugs to give you a good reading, and that can be misleading depending on your technique.

    good luck and keep up the great updates.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  22. #22
    Registered User Hardway's Avatar
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    Great write up 73 and glad to see you are making progress. Your pics and info are great and look forward to more updates. Good luck!
    08/1970 240z Series-1 #8011 - Silver, black int., 2.4L I-6, 5spd, 90% restored.
    06/1973 VW Karmann Ghia - Black convertible, 4spd, 1600cc air-cooled engine.
    11/2013 Scion FR-S - Silver, 6spd, a car with the soul of a Z for the modern times.
    Restoration thread of my old '72 240z -> http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/o...1972-240z.html

  23. #23
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Zedyone_kenobi,

    Do you ever regret going to the L28? I don't think I will performance wise, but I'm tempted to keep my numbers matching block and ebay found 90,000 mile E31 head for the forseeable future.

    Also, are you running triples? I already have a regulator, need to source a good pressure gauge as well. What pump did you end up choosing?
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  24. #24
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default

    I have investigated the plating process for nuts and bolts. So far I have been using a large wire brush mounted to a bench grinding machine. Laborious holding a bolt for a while at all angles; but it does make them shiny! The cheapest fake self plating kit I saw was about $54 for a three stage zinc/cadmium kit from Eastwood with less than stellar reviews on Amazon.

    It's looking like many of my nuts and bolts will either be clear coated or painted Datsun engine blue to contrast the polished aluminum parts.

    I recently purchased the double barrel rock tumbler from Harbor Freight Tools. Looking back, I could have gone with the single barrel. I bought some rust removal product from the same store, as well as a 40/70 glass mixture. I filled the barrel about 2/3 of the way with the rust removal product (small glass feeling pyramids with a funky smell), put water up to that level, then threw my bolts, nuts, and washers in. I wrote down which ones they were. They were pretty greasy, and the ones that weren't greasy had some rust in the threads and on their heads.

    Attachment 60756

    After 24 hours of it running in my garage, I checked out the bolts and they looked pretty clean and most of the rust-removal product had turned to a dirty sludge. I decided to stop the machine and rinse all the parts off and to restart them in the 40/70 grit mixture. It says it won't harm soft materials, and I'm hoping it'll polish them a little bit. I'll check on them in another 12 hours or so.

    Attachment 60757

    Attachment 60758

    Attachment 60759

    Overall I'm happy with the results so far and it lets me do other stuff while the machine is running. It's not too loud.
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  25. #25
    Registered User mgood's Avatar
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    Default

    Your finished nut and bolts look pretty good. Don't go cheep on the plating process. Use this one Here Copy Cad® & Zinc Plating Kits - Electroplating & Anodizing - Caswell Inc - get the 1 1/2 gal kit.

    I would also get this rectifier - 5 Amp Constant Current Rectifier - Power Supplies / Rectifiers - Electroplating & Anodizing - Caswell Inc

    This one is a little bigger and will plate larger pieces. I got the smaller on and it will only do 5 sq. inches at a time.
    Michael 11/75 - 76-280 - HLS30-281,114
    Web site -Click Here and ORIGINAL OWNERS OF THE 280Z (1975-1976 -1977 - 1978 - ONLY) REGISTRATION[

  26. #26
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default Update

    I've been busy with job applications and interviews during my transition out of the Army. Haven't had much time lately (odd given that I'm on terminal leave) but the weather has been nicer the past couple days and I'm getting antsy. I haven't driven the Z in a YEAR!

    I reinstalled all the fuel and brake line brackets. I finished up the battery tray area with roll-on bedliner to toughen it up. I painted it silver. Most of this will be invisible to the eye with battery tray, battery, etc. Instead of welding in the battery tray I'm just going to use self-tapping screws. I still need to touch-up the brake booster.

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    Sanding, cleaning, polishing, painting nuts and bolts is a long, tedious process. I'm hoping the finished results will pay off. I installed the fuel pump (after cleaning it up with a wire brush) with new gaskets and original spacer. Installed the timing chain cover. Installed the water pump. Installed a section of the coolant/heater hose T-bar and line.

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    Next is finishing the coolant/heater hoses, install the NISMO high flow oil pump, factory distributor (still haven't decided which one to use; I have the factory '73 dizzy and '83 dizzy on hand). Need to install alternator, starter, and motor mounts. I got pretty frustrated yesterday--it looks like my gasket set didn't include a thermostat gasket? WTH?

    I also picked up a NOS Clifford Research header. The plan is to get a competent local exhaust shop to build a full twice pipes system.

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    Here is the original header I had, sandblasted, primed, painted, and cleared with 2000 degree header paint:

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    I may use this original one first to break in the motor and have my original exhaust ready to bolt up.

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  27. #27
    No more body roll! SteveJ's Avatar
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    So are you staying in Georgia, or are you moving elsewhere?
    73 240Z
    74 260Z

    Blue's collection of tech tips - A great place to look for answers
    XenonS30 -The cheap source for FSMs
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    Fiddling with Z Cars - Z car tips & tricks and pictures of my car-loving life.
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  28. #28
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    Default

    I have a house and a mortgage here, so I'll be here for a little while.

    The current plan is to find a job, stay here through the rest of the year, then move to Austin, Texas to finish my Bachelor's Degree at UT.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  29. #29
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    Default Update time

    Made some decent progress with my 2.9L L28 swap in the past couple weeks.

    For the area where I replaced metal under the battery tray, I coated it with bedliner to add another layer of protection, then painted it silver. I also stripped, sanded, primed, and painted the battery tray itself. I made the decision to screw the battery tray in with self tapping screws instead of welding it in. I also have a new plastic battery tray with hose to place on top.

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    Now on to the engine itself. Obviously the first step was to install it! After dealing with ill-fitting and poorly made motor mounts from Black Dragon and Beck Arnley, I decided to bite the bullet and spent the $90+ on the factory Nissan mounts. Boy did it make a difference. The photo below shows the two new Nissan motor mounts. Then the old one. On the Black Dragon mounts, the small pin on the bottom which lines up in the crossmember below the bolt was about an 1/8 of an inch off. On the Beck Arnley motor mounts, it wasn't threaded for factory bolts--it required the use of a nut and washer. Also, the rubber was not cut/molded properly to attach the independent bracket supports.

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    I purchased the clutch/transmission spline alignment tool for about $4. It actually gave us a bit of trouble. About 30 minutes of fidgeting and adjusting the motor/transmission alignment it finally all came together. I installed the 60 amp alternator, flame thrower 3 ohm coil to delete the ballast resistor, 280zx gear reduction starter. I also stripped, painted (Datsun blue), and clear coated the battery hold down bracket. After that, my dad and I hooked up all the wiring in about 15 minutes. I don't like the look of old/dirty wiring next to a new shiny motor but I have heat shrink wiring wrap that will go on once it's on the road and everything is sorted out.

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    I went out and spent about $100 on various odds and ends. The ~ one foot coolant line from the lower radiator hose to the heater core lines. Various vacuum and coolant line block off caps for the triple SKs and to block off / remove the hard coolant line that used to wrap around the block and warm up the stock intake manifold. Rubber bushings to place between the aluminum radiator and radiator support wall to shield from vibrations. I also had to cut the tube coming out of the lower thermostat housing because the carb would not be able to bolt to the intake. I planned on buying a brass plug to screw in but was lucky enough to dig through my original intake/balance tube zip lock bags and found one that fit perfectly. It looks a lot cleaner.

    I finished thoroughly cleaning the insides of two out of the three 45mm SK carbs. Now there's only one left. Once the carbs are mounted with the Datsun Spirit heat shield and the aluminum 4 row radiator is installed, all I have to do is fill up the oil and fluids and crank her up. I'm hoping to be able to drive it to enter a local car show on Fort Gordon on Saturday.

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    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default My new daily

    And not Datsun related, but in between all this I flew to Houston to pick up a new daily driver. It's a one owner 2002 Subaru WRX wagon with 115,000 miles after the road trip back to Georgia.

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  31. #31
    Registered User Ptero's Avatar
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    Beautiful wagon! Love those cars.
    '73 HLS30 143820

  32. #32
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    I am a subaru guru of sorts, have had nothing but them for 12 years. My THIrd Subaur was a bugeye. Somebody spent some real money on that one as it has the nice JDM lights that were about a grand back in 2002. It obviously had aftermarket wheels before it was sold, as those are just OEM Subaru wheels. Remeber you will need a +53mm offset for any subie.
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  33. #33
    Registered User LeonV's Avatar
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    Nice work on the Z, and a nice wagon to boot!
    2/74 260Z

  34. #34
    Registered User Perfect240Z's Avatar
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    Beautiful Z, and engine.
    1970 Datsun 240Z "Delilah" HLS3000979

  35. #35
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    The WRX was a show car owned by a 55 year old woman. She traded it in to a dealer on a new WRX. The dealer stripped it for the most part before sending it to auction. Wheels, stereo, CAI, exhaust. Overall I'm happy but the dealer is withholding service records even though I am in contact with the previous owner.
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  36. #36
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    Default She's on the ROAD!

    It's been a while since my last update. Layla is breathing and running on the road. All I can say is it's an amazing feeling.

    A couple steps back:

    I installed a Champion 4 row aluminum radiator from eBay.

    4 Row Champion 1970 1975 Datsun 240Z 260z Radiator | eBay

    I swear I paid $225 for a 3 row on eBay, and was shocked to get the 4 row in the mail. I think they were out of stock and sent me the 4 row or something. I also found some rubber shifter bushings at AutoZone which I used to run the bolts through to provide a small amount of vibration dampening against the radiator support. All holes in the radiator lined up perfectly to factory mounting holes. With the thickness of the four row radiator along with the 280zx 3 row balancer pulley, it is a tight squeeze. I mounted the fan and clutch to the pulley before I installed the radiator for the sake of space. It is an extremely close fit with perhaps 1/2" between the 240z fan and the new radiator. I think it'll be fine and haven't found any issues.

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    The finish and craftsmanship look excellent; my thermostat stays below the halfway point with city driving (temps 70-85 degrees in May right now). I'm happy and feel as though it should handle Georgia and Texas summer temps of 100+ degrees just fine.

    The next order of business was to install my thoroughly cleaned and sorted triple 45mm Sanyo Kiki (SK) racing carburetors originally from Japan. Cleaning all three carburetors was a tedious process; they were pretty gunked up inside. I will be experimenting with Weber and Mikuni chokes/jets in the next 1,000 or so miles to try to find my best setup. I also installed a triple carb heat shield from Datsun Spirit for $116. It was a little disappointing at first to see how simple it was to make; but the quality of the zinc plated brackets and hardware were really nice. I will also apply 2000 degree thermotec heat shield/fiber/sticker to the top and bottom of it. It's nice because it has lips to keep any possible gas leaks away from the headers.

    At the moment I don't have any air horns or filters. YIKES! That's my next order of business.

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    I ran all the fuel lines, spark plugs, NGK wires, etc. I installed a Mr. Gasket liquid filled fuel pressure gauge from Amazon:

    http://www.amazon.com/Mr-Gasket-1564...pressure+gauge

    From my research and advice I received I decided to break in and run the engine with the factory mechanical fuel pump. The gauge will allow me to keep track of the pressure it produces. I dumped the Schneider break in additive all over the camshaft and in the timing chain area in the head to let it get to the block and pan. Next came the moment of truth. After being satisfied that oil was being pumped to all lobes of the cam (I blocked off the spray bar holes with the hardware supplied in the Schneider Stage III kit) and seeing sufficient oil pressure, I decided to go ahead and try to start it and let her fire.

    To much dismay, it just wouldn't start. I had spark. Spark plug and point gaps were set. I had fuel. FRUSTRATION ensued. My father's impression was that we had the distributor off by 180 degrees, which is the initial guess for every backyard mechanic. I was certain I did enough research about installing the oil pump and spindle at the 11:25 position. We removed the distributor anyway to double check; it was spot on. Firing order and spark plug wires were double checked. I slept on it--depressed a little I might add.

    The next day I was reassessing the situation without my dad there. After referring to the wiring diagram in my FSM, I realized that the condenser for the coil was on the wrong terminal. After switching it to the negative as it was supposed to be, SHE FIRED UP IMMEDIATELY! I was running my sandblasted and painted header that was originally on the car. She was LOUD! Soon thereafter I reinstalled the rusty 2 1/4" exhaust with a new Magnaflow muffler. I recorded some HD videos but I think they're too long to post.

    I let the engine rev at ~ 2500 rpms for about 15-20 minutes to let it reach operating temperature. My oil pressure was amazing (thanks to the NISMO high flow pump) and was over 45 lbs. I inspected for leaks--NONE!

    Here is a super low quality video I took on my cell phone. Trust me, it does not do it justice. This was before I used the synchrometer to synch the carbs. There is some bog and the linkage could use some attention.



    After dialing in the idle and balancing the carbs it runs amazing. I reinstalled the front sway bar with new end links and bushings. I also drove to a local tire shop to get my new Falken Ziex Ze 912 195/60R14s mounted and balanced.

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    I put the hood and grill on with my father on a Saturday morning and immediately drove to a local car show on Fort Gordon. All the rushing made me feel like I was on a car TV show rushing to complete a build.

    I was amazed at how much attention the car received. A surprising number of women came up to me talking about how it was their first car in San Francisco, Florida, etc. The older men reminisced about how fast they were in the day. Here's a shot from the car show:

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    I put about 80 miles on it in two days, always varying speeds, etc. So far I haven't gone above ~3800 rpms. It feels like a completely different car. I plan on emailing the PO who owned it since 1976 and show him the progress I've made. I can't wait until the engine is broken in and I can really drive it.

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  37. #37
    Registered User LeonV's Avatar
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    Sweet, nice work!!! It's a shame we can't get properly sized high performance tires in 14" anymore, without going to essentially race rubber.
    2/74 260Z

  38. #38
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LeonV View Post
    Sweet, nice work!!! It's a shame we can't get properly sized high performance tires in 14" anymore, without going to essentially race rubber.
    So far I'm really impressed with the tires. When I park in my garage dirt and tree buds, etc. stick to the tread all around the tire. Even touching the rubber feels very grippy as opposed to most tires I've felt before.

    Hopefully within 1,000-3,000 miles I'll autocross it and will definitely hit the drag strip a few times before buying some slicks.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  39. #39
    Registered User LeonV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 73str86 View Post
    So far I'm really impressed with the tires. When I park in my garage dirt and tree buds, etc. stick to the tread all around the tire. Even touching the rubber feels very grippy as opposed to most tires I've felt before.

    Hopefully within 1,000-3,000 miles I'll autocross it and will definitely hit the drag strip a few times before buying some slicks.
    I'm sure they're fine for regular driving but the Ziex 912 is an all-season tire and its diameter at that size is about 1.5" smaller than stock. I just wish there were summer performance tires available in 14" with a diameter of at least 24.5" but I don't see that happening any time soon, if ever.
    2/74 260Z

  40. #40
    Supporting Member Zedyone_kenobi's Avatar
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    Get some kind of filtration on that thing sir!!!!

    I do not want your new engine to suck up dirt!
    1971 240Z HLS30-38691
    93.9% done and getting better every day
    Now with 100% more DATSUN SPIRIT L28 Power
    1968 Datsun 2000 SRL311-03416

  41. #41
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Default K&N Air Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by Zedyone_kenobi View Post
    Get some kind of filtration on that thing sir!!!!

    I do not want your new engine to suck up dirt!
    The K&N air filters actually arrived from Pegasus Racing on April 30th I just didn't make the time to post an update. I'm a lot more willing to go for longer drives now. I did not factor the cost of the K&Ns into the figure for the carbs. It hurt a little. I keep thinking I'm done with spending money!



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    Since the last update I took the carbs, intake, and exhaust off. I figured I might as well get my NOS Jet Hot coated Clifford Research header put on with an exhaust made by a real shop instead of the hack job that was on there before.

    After some research and a recommendation I found Eddie's Custom Exhaust Shop in Augusta, GA. I got an estimate of $160 for 2.5" pipe including making the header extension from the 6-3-2 header.

    The owner told me I needed to supply the header reducers. After ordering from NAPA for $26.99 and waiting two days for delivery, they sold me a set for larger headers. The exhaust shop sent me to a local race shop I had never heard of. After walking in the 10-bay garage seeing all sorts of sweet rides, the owner of this shop guided me into the store area. There were about 15 isles of all the race parts you only ever find online. Ignition, AN fittings, fuel pumps, the whole nine yards. Fully built 383s and polished rear ends. I was like a kid in a candy store. The local race shop sold me the reducers I needed (pre welded together I might add) for $16.99.

    As the guy was ringing me up I asked if he had any exhaust tips for sale. He pointed to the other side of the wall and I could not believe what I saw. A NOS ANSA tip! I asked if he had another and he said there should be another in the box. I could not believe it and I felt incredibly lucky to have gone into this shop. I'm going to eventually weld them together and turn it into a twin tip design. I suppose this makes up for when WingZr0 ripped a few of us off for $400 a piece.

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    The exhaust shop finished around 1 p.m. after dealing with the hiccups. Instead of going for a Flowmaster or Magnaflow muffler, I opted for a used Borla Pro XS he offered me for $20. Overall I'm happy with it. I'll post a video--eventually.

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    I still haven't gotten around to swapping the rear differential. I just bought a fixer-upper investment/rental home that will be taking a great deal of my time.

    Last edited by 73str86; 05-26-2013 at 05:58 AM.
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  42. #42
    Registered User LeonV's Avatar
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    I bet it sounds glorious!
    2/74 260Z

  43. #43
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    Default Time for an update

    A year later...

    I just broke 1,000 miles on my new L29. I gave up on the triple SKs; they couldn't idle enough to my liking and I didn't want to mess with all the jets.

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    Sold them and made a couple hundred dollars. Back to my 3 screw SUs.

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    I cut my throttle arm from the firewall to the balance tube to use the SKs, so I had to find a new rod...difficult task. Stumbled on a local guy with a parts car, bought a bunch of carb parts, ended up with the whole dang car a couple weeks later in exchange for a 83 5 speed and p90 turbo head.

    There was something wrong with the rebuilt kit I bought a couple years ago (maybe I got a flat top kit) that I put in because once everything was together, she wouldn't run. What do I do? Put in the original needle valves along with some SM needles...and she purrs like a kitten. Amazing throttle response, with stage III schneider, clifford headers, and borla muffler, everyone looks when I step on it. Sounds like a V8 at idle but the glorious straight six sound under load.

    There's one catch. Once I hit 1,000 miles I started taking her over 4,000 rpms. At 5,000, she falls flat on her face and putters out. I'm going to dial in the timing this weekend with a timing light.

    Upcoming projects: my humming diff is still going strong at 1,000 miles after it started. I have a fully rebuilt R180 4.11 open diff ready to put in, just sourcing some bushings and trying to decide if I want the Ron Tyler diff mount.

    Also looking for a used 432 style rear spoiler and non-ducted spook airdam.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  44. #44
    Registered User Oiluj's Avatar
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    Nice work! Looks great.
    93 octane? I'm so-o jealous. Premium pump gas here is 91, contains alcohol, (and I think they are lying about it being 91 octane).
    Julio
    1972 240Z (in-progress, 95% complete)
    CZC# 15388

  45. #45
    Registered User 73str86's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oiluj View Post
    Nice work! Looks great.
    93 octane? I'm so-o jealous. Premium pump gas here is 91, contains alcohol, (and I think they are lying about it being 91 octane).
    Yes 93 is available here in GA. I try to stick to the non-ethanol version as well (around $4.39/gallon).

    I plan on moving to Colorado at the end of this year. I think she'll run ok on 91.

    Is there a video size limit for these forums? I want to take a good quality video of my current exhaust before I change it a little.
    http://www.hookit.com/members/triingsoldier/

  46. #46
    Registered User HaZmatt's Avatar
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    Cool, what part of Colorado? Theres only 91 octane here too and you may need to retune or re jet your carbs for the altitude.

  47. #47
    Registered User psdenno's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=73str86;461267
    Is there a video size limit for these forums? I want to take a good quality video of my current exhaust before I change it a little.[/QUOTE]

    If the video is too large, you could load it on YouTube and just post a link to it on this fourm.
    Dennis
    1971 240Z - Original Owner
    2010 Infiniti G37 Convertible

  48. #48
    It's awesome bartsscooterservice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 73str86 View Post
    Yes 93 is available here in GA. I try to stick to the non-ethanol version as well (around $4.39/gallon).

    I plan on moving to Colorado at the end of this year. I think she'll run ok on 91.

    Is there a video size limit for these forums? I want to take a good quality video of my current exhaust before I change it a little.
    At least you still have a choice on non ethanol.. I only seen that in Germany here across the border. Here everything regular contains 5% ethanol in it. I hope it doesn't effect the fuel system and carbs to much.
    HLS30 32581, 5/71 Matching numbers

    Jay Leno : You know one week after the Americans have walked on the moon, the Japanese introduced this sports car, and…if you’re a car guy pretty equal. I mean walking on the moon was pretty good, but how many times you’d gonna walk on the moon? But here was an affordable sports car that had real performance and looked like it cost a lot more than it did.

  49. #49
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    What cam are you using? that could be part of the flat spot issue?

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