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Thread: New member searching for a Z, have some questions

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    Default New member searching for a Z, have some questions

    Hi guys, I haven't purchased my z-car yet, but I'm searching. I'm looking at 1970-74 cars, and I'd really like a 240. I've noticed a few things about the cars I've seen and I thought this might be a good place to turn for answers.

    1) Chrome trim down the length of the body side: some cars seem to have this trim and some don't. I don't notice a correlation with model year or state of repair/modification; was this an option? Does it indicate any other option package or content? Or does it just come down to whether or not an owner has removed it?
    2) Small button or switch on dash to the right of the tachometer: in some photos I can clearly make out "ON -- OFF" (arranged vertically) but I'm curious what this is for. It's just stuck there on the dash and looks aftermarket, but all the cars have them.
    3) Last, I read in one ebay auction about 1971 manual trans having "problem-prone shift shafts"... I haven't read anything else about this - is this any kind of serious problem?

    Thanks for any help! I'm really looking forward to joining you guys here and digging into one of these cars.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bacarl View Post
    Hi guys, I haven't purchased my z-car yet, but I'm searching. I'm looking at 1970-74 cars, and I'd really like a 240.
    Hi bacarl:
    I wish you the best of luck in your search. Lots of advice here on the forum about what to look for ect. Of course it depends on what you want - A car that is ready to drive and enjoy, a Project Car that needs refreshing or restoring, A Classic Z for show or one to Race.

    Quote Originally Posted by bacarl View Post
    I've noticed a few things about the cars I've seen and I thought this might be a good place to turn for answers.

    1) Chrome trim down the length of the body side: some cars seem to have this trim and some don't. I don't notice a correlation with model year or state of repair/modification; was this an option? Does it indicate any other option package or content? Or does it just come down to whether or not an owner has removed it?
    The Body Protective Side Moldings were usually Dealer installed prior to the original sale of the Datsun 240Z's. Some owners over the years have deleted them when the car was refinished.

    Quote Originally Posted by bacarl View Post
    2) Small button or switch on dash to the right of the tachometer: in some photos I can clearly make out "ON -- OFF" (arranged vertically) but I'm curious what this is for. It's just stuck there on the dash and looks aftermarket, but all the cars have them.
    It is for the Hazard Warning Lights Switch - the switch was required, by our Safety Standards to be marked for the 1972 Model Year. The Hazard Warning Switch was a different design and Lighted on the 73 240Z's - so no decal on the side of them either.
    See: Details About 240Z Dashboards

    Quote Originally Posted by bacarl View Post
    3) Last, I read in one ebay auction about 1971 manual trans having "problem-prone shift shafts"... I haven't read anything else about this - is this any kind of serious problem?
    Not really. The transmissions were "improved" with the 1972 model year. The shift linkage gave a more positive feel in the newer Type B transmissions that the older Type A trany with the "monkey motion shift linkage. There were other improvements as well - but the old type "A" were pretty much trouble free for 100K miles if not abused.

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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    Welcome!

    1.) Not factory original or option. Dealer or owner installed if present.

    2.) Hazard flasher switch.

    3.) No clue. I drove a '71 for years, no problems with the "shift shafts".
    Arne - Former owner, HLS30-37705, 7/71, 905 Red
    Car blogs - 240Z - Porsche 911

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    Thanks gents, good to know!

    Carl, my goal is to find a relatively unmolested car that's rough around the edges, but not too far gone for my meager skill set. That way I can add my touches to it without re-doing someone else's work, and ensure things are done properly (to the best of my ability). A modest but quick autocross-able street car is the end goal. There was a fantastic 1970 barn find on ebay the other day, and my dumb ass forgot to get a bid in before the auction ended. It went for $50 less than my max bid *would* have been. Still kicking myself. So the search continues.
    Last edited by bacarl; 04-16-2013 at 08:59 AM.
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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    I saw this car in person a couple weeks ago. I think it's what you're looking for. I'd buy it but I already have 6.
    Rare Find - 1971 Datsun 240Z - Wow! One Owner Garage Find 94xxx Miles 4 speed and A/C - Cars for Sale - HybridZ

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    Here is the same car that Chuck is talking about on this forum.

    http://www.classiczcars.com/forums/c...oast-find.html
    Michael 11/75 - 76-280 - HLS30-281,114
    Web site -Click Here and ORIGINAL OWNERS OF THE 280Z (1975-1976 -1977 - 1978 - ONLY) REGISTRATION[

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    How cool, thanks Chuck. Condition- and price-wise, that's pretty much what I'm looking for. I'm not a fan of the BRG/butterscotch, but I'll think about it.

    Interesting that you can see where the side moldings that I asked about earlier have been removed on that car. Also, looking at qwik510's detailed photos generated another question: what is the "temp" knob at the driver's right knee?

    edit: I bet that knob is for the A/C, isn't it...
    Last edited by bacarl; 04-16-2013 at 11:11 AM.
    Brian
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    Quote Originally Posted by bacarl View Post
    How cool, thanks Chuck. Condition- and price-wise, that's pretty much what I'm looking for. I'm not a fan of the BRG/butterscotch, but I'll think about it.

    Interesting that you can see where the side moldings that I asked about earlier have been removed on that car. Also, looking at qwik510's detailed photos generated another question: what is the "temp" knob at the driver's right knee?

    edit: I bet that knob is for the A/C, isn't it...
    Dealer-installed A/C. I like the color combo. It gives it a classy look.

    Chuck
    East Coast Z Nationals held at the Carlisle Import & Kit Nationals - May 16-18, 2014 Carlisle, PA
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    Too British!

    Thanks again Chuck, really nice of you to point me towards that car.
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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    bacarl:
    If you are serious - you'll look for years trying to find a better "Project Car" at anywhere near that price, anywhere East of the Mississippi. Of course that is a "restorable" example - and you would have to be willing to put the time and dollars into it - easly to spend $20K+ along the way just "refreshing" it.

    Full and proper repaint {stripped down to a bare shell by you} perhaps $6500.00 to get the job done in a couple months. Full suspension rebuild, with the component parts stripped and painted etc. Good Shocks, brakes, all suspension bushings replaced andmaybe new springs for autocross... another $1000.00. Fresh valve job with minor head enhancements at least - and maybe a full rebuild. {scuffed the cylinders and wiped out the cam/rockers as they threw a battery in it and cranked it over - who knows?}. Ah heck have the whole thing rebuilt - $3500.00/$4500.00 depending..{L26 crank and an over-bore maybe}.

    Then new tires with some "grip" and wider wheels another $800.00 to $1000.00 {with mounting/balanceing and sales tax or shipping charges}. Rebuild the radiator and cooling lines. Add new starter, alt. distributor and rebuilt carbs.. another $1200.00. Drop the fuel tank and clean it out.. New carpet and a set of racing seats.. another grand..

    And so it goes... don't start out thinking you can get the car they way you want it - for $10k, nor even $15K.. "refreshed" you'll have $20K and a lot of personal time in it..

    Or you could start with something like this one -if the bidding doesn't go to high.. pretty much finished {but you would have to have it checked over before buying}..

    EBay Item Number 161008859120
    Datsun : Z-Series 2 door coupe in Datsun | eBay Motors

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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    Carl - excellent advice from a wise and experienced man. Having restored and refreshed a few cars, I share your views.
    Hank
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    Hey Carl, thanks for the reality-check post. Interestingly, that's the ebay listing that generated my question earlier about the shift shafts. That looks like a super clean, perfectly-refurbished car.

    So this is exactly my conundrum: to buy a car like qwik's and spend an untold amount of time and money refreshing, or buy a car like that yellow one in NorCal (or this one which I really like) that is essentially turn key. The allure of the latter is obvious. However as I'm sure everyone on this site can appreciate, there is a joy in the process of refreshing, despite how painful it can get. And there's the sense of ownership and pride in starting/driving/having something you built (or refreshed, in this case). As qwik510 said himself in his ad thread, "If you didn't build it, it's not yours".
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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    Hi Brian:
    I guess that pretty much covers the spectrum. A Green 70 Barn Find {deserves a full restoration}, the Yellow Street Mod {pretty much ready to drive} or the Blue numbers matching fully refreshed 71.

    I'd grab the Green 70 and just stick it away. Then buy the Yellow Street Mod with the L28 if it sells for a reasonable price - For about $16K you could have the best of both Z worlds. Five or ten years from now - if you did a Show Quality proper Restoration - the Series I Z would be a Classic Car to keep. In the mean time you could drive/auto-cross the Yellow Z.

    I'd like the Blue 71 a lot more - if the undercarriage had not been undercoated. If it was clean, rust free and original I'd like to see it kept that way. Nonetheless it looks like it could be very nice Z to own and enjoy..The modifications like Euro Bumpers, 260Z seats, somewhat incomplete engine {no air pump, part of an A/C system} Speakers cut in the door panels etc - all lower the value of the car at this point. But that might be a good thing for the Buyer..

    decisions decisions..
    FWIW,
    Carl B.

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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    Regarding the Blue not-quite-original 71, all those things would be good for a buyer if it was a typical private sale where I could negotiate and subtract here and there for specific blemishes I noticed. Unfortunately, the nature of ebay means that folks who know nothing about Z-cars (myself included to some extent) must out-do each others' bids without necessarily being aware of those specific items. I didn't even realize the seats were from a 260, or that the air pump was missing; I only noticed the speakers and the missing A/C bits (those are included in the sale, though). I'm bummed about the undercoat as well - never know what it's hiding.

    Unfortunately I don't have the resources to squirrel away the Green barn find until the time comes to restore it. I would have to buy it now and restore it, or simply pass altogether.

    And of course, the option exists to hold off on all three and continue looking. Patience is a virtue... sigh.
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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    Regarding that air pump... that just feeds air into the exhaust somewhere to aid in combustion for emission purposes, correct? It's on the manifold side of the block, right? Where exactly?

    Also (in looking for its air pump) I noticed the Green car has a battery disconnect installed. I wonder if that points to a discharging issue that might have been the reason the car got parked. That's an assumption, but I do hate electrical gremlins.

    I wish they hadn't started that engine with 20 year old oil in it...
    Last edited by bacarl; 04-17-2013 at 09:52 AM.
    Brian
    73 240Z HLS30-151534

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